The BW Halloween chat is today at 4:30 PM EST (That’s about an hour and a half from now). I will be taking questions from twitter (@thisblackwitch) and Ustream. If you want to submit starter topics, please comment below.
The BW Halloween chat is today at 4:30 PM EST (That’s about an hour and a half from now). I will be taking questions from twitter (@thisblackwitch) and Ustream. If you want to submit starter topics, please comment below.
It’s this month’s Ask Black Witch! Before we get to the questions of this month let’s pick the winnahs of Samhain Pickers!
– Alice O.
– Taryn M.
– Erika B.
W00t! You all have been contacted and remember folks, Halloween chat is at 4:30 PM EST on Ustream! Now on with the questions!
I’m 13 years old (And Black) and I’m just coming out about being bisexual. I’ve been interested in magick and Paganism for awhile, but in between school and the other activities I do, I never have time to focus on this. I’m not afraid about me interest in Paganism but it’s not really accepted in my area, since i live in the bible belt. I brought it up once and I got in a very large argument that left me wondering, Is there anything against Bisexual people in the Paganism religion? Other than that, do you have tips, or sites, that I can use to further my investigation and study of this religion. It’s been on my mind since I was 8 and it’s never left, so I’m positive that I am serious about this, but if you were to look at the knowledge of this topic, it would seem like I didn’t care. Any help??
Here’s the fun part about Paganism and what sets us apart from Christianity: We don’t care about your sexuality. You can be gay, straight, bi, pan, asexual, demisexual, it doesn’t matter in this religion. As long as you’re not a raging jerk and understand consent, all is spiffy. If anything, folks will embrace you, you’ll probably have an easier time finding someone to date and other fun stuff as you explore your sexuality. If someone was being a homophobe or bi-phobic, they have far less ground to stand on in Paganism (nature is rife with examples of pretty much chucking all sexuality and gender norms in the trash, for one, and so does plenty of mythologies, for two) and it definitely would not get nearly a favorable audience as it would in some Christian circles, like the Bible Belt. Keep in mind tho that bigots can exist in any walk of life but you ought to run into them less in Paganism. Way less.
You can see useful information about Paganism all over Black Witch, just click Resources and Information but here’s a basic clump to get you started:
African American Wiccan Society – Yeah, it says Wiccans but it refers to all Pagans, there’s also a facebook group!
Mystick Wicks – a great forum to interact and meet with other Pagans
Then there’s the book I always recommend: Where to Park Your Broomstick by Lauren Manoy
Now, you’re a young person so that means I’m gonna link dump some useful information here. Here’s some tumblrs about being bisexual so you can navigate your feelings and experiences better
Bi’s of Colour – This is UK based but fantastic nonetheless. And they even have a phone number, I recommend Google Voice to call it for free.
QPOC – This tumblr operates as an asks blog (where people ask questions and get them answered) but has outstanding information I think you’ll benefit from. And you can still ask relationship questions here at Black Witch. Sometimes it gets a tad raunchy tho (not really but definitely not exactly age appropriate for young teens) but that’s what the scroll button is for.
Bisexual facts – Also an asks blog with tons of helpful advice!
And when you get into a relationship down the road of life, it’s important for you to be super informed so every relationship will be a happy one and you can recognize the bad ones before they get worse. And do not forget to build a relationship with yourself and know what you truly want, like and dislike before you want to have a relationship with another person. Take your time, get to know yourself first.
What a Healthy Relationship Looks Like – very important because a lot of people get confused on it, straight, gay, bi and otherwise. Everyone should be reading this.
Condoms and sex safety – this is for the future, the better informed you are, the happier you’ll be. You don’t have to click on it now if the idea of sex squicks you out – which is totally fine – just store this post for future use.
Bisexuality myths and realities – Since you live in the Bible belt, you will probably hear a ton of these, best know how to get them out of the way because they will be annoying. And here’s another. And anudda.
Don’t forget to find a Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) at your school or any physical place that serves as one if you can. You sound like you’re on the cusp to high school so there definitely should be one there.
Sorry, but I can’t seem to find your name on your website, but my name is Khadijah, and I am 17 yrs old, in high school, and I have always been interested with the supernatural. But, now I am starting to take an interest in Wicca. I’ve seen shows about it, movies, and even read books about it. But I can’t really find any non-fiction books that really explain what it is. So I was just wondering if you could sort of be my mentor? Or just someone who can quickly explain anything you know about it…
If you’re willing to help me, that would be so, so great. However, if you’re worried about my maturity level, you have nothing to worry about, because, I’m in challenging classes and have always been told I’m mature for my age. I’m just someone who would like to learn about a religion that is open and peaceful, rather than having to sit for hours in church to prove I believe in God.
It really would be wonderful if you could help me, but now I’ve realized I have written an essay for you, and am just going to let you think about it.
Black Witch is the name! I can’t be your mentor because I can be major derpy with time but you can always ask questions here on BW, that’s no problem. If you don’t want to wait for the end of the month to get answers to them, that’s what the BW Twitter and Tumblr is for. And for the movies and books that touch on subjects like Wicca and Paganism and Witchcraft, I highly recommend you take those with a grain of salt (a salt lick even) because they’re full of stereotypes. I always recommend Where to Park Your Broomstick by Lauren Manoy, it’s the book that got me started and is a great piece of writing.
Maturity is very useful in this faith because there’s a lot to learn and trust, the more you learn and understand, the happier everything becomes. Keeping an open mind is the best first step you can take. And you haven’t written an essay, I am known for sending friends honest blocks of texts a page or so long so no problem. Besides, I like reading so don’t be afraid to get in contact again.
Can you make me a mermaid?
Since you actually wrote in a legible manner, I shall go easy on you.
I’d make you a mermaid but I’m all out of clay to do an ornament sized one but there’s a site that makes tons!
Hopefully you didn’t think I was gonna actually turn you into an actual mermaid? Lolz, not my thing and you most likely wouldn’t have been able to afford it, spells aren’t cheap and if I did pay for pray, I wouldn’t be either.
Remember folks, the Black Witch Ustream chat is on Halloween at 4:30 PM EST. Be there!
So, Samhain is around the corner and Afro-Punk asked me to write some pieces on it. No problem. Already was on it.
Samhain is Halloween and one of the biggest holidays for witches, wiccans and Pagans and personally one of my favorite holidays. It’s so nice and spooky and fun! And you get free food from your neighbors, always spiffy. Halloween is a fun holiday but also a holiday filled with a lot of stereotypes and misconceptions. Let’s start with the biggest misconceptions: The spells
Firstly, please do not sacrifice animals on Halloween. It won’t work, regardless what you’re trying to accomplish and this is the 21st century, Witches such as myself have other, far simplier methods for magick working. I don’t sacrifice animals and neither does anyone else I know and I’ve been practicing Paganism and witchcraft for about ten years now. Again, no sacrificing animals, not necessary. It’s cruel to the animal (and illegal). And in case I have to throw this in there: no sacrificing people either. There are other ways to cast effective spells that doesn’t involve a bottle of chloroform and a burlap sack. It’s cruel to the person (and illegal). No killing, no maiming, no harming. Sign up for the military if that’s what you’re into.
Now, the spells. What I touched on above is a pretty big stereotype, misconception and a harmful one. People who usually know nothing of magick but watch a lot of movies get this thinking that killing or maiming living things for Halloween will have some spectacular effect that frankly won’t happen. From summoning the devil to trying to revive a long dead relationship, there is really no need to take the life of another to make these silly things happen. None. Whatsoever. At all. It doesn’t matter how ridiculous or earnest the intention of the spell, sacrifice is not necessary at all. While it is true that sacrifices has happened in Paganism’s history and still continues in some pockets of the world, they’re done by extremely skilled practitioners and with respect to the animal’s life, not some random loser out for serial killer-esque kicks and giggles so again, refrain from doing any harming. No blood.
Since Halloween is associated with magick and spells, that means I could bet dollars to donuts that many people from the everyday dimwit to the well-seasoned witch is attempting some spell of some sort, whether they got the spell from the internet or from a book on witchcraft that very night. Actually, I usually don’t since it’s like shopping on Black Friday, not my thing, everything is clogged and not interested. I rather terrorize my friends for free snacks or watch It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and The Simpson’s Treehouse of Horror, I can cast spells any other time of the year, it’s no big deal. Other witches celebrate differently or the same, we’re our own individuals.
Next to spells, there’s the belief of summoning the dead, usually via Ouija board. Though it is correct that Halloween is the day that the veil between the living and the dead is thinnest, talking to the dead is no simple task. It’s too simple for things to go wrong and I would strongly advise against it. I don’t mess with Ouija board and neither do any of the witches or occultists I know. This is not to say no one does, but those who do are usually pretty skilled enough to handle anything that could go wrong because despite the honest fact that you could be trying to summon Jimi Hendrix, it’s still very possible you could get a demon or some other malevolent spirit. Without proper skill, anything can come through if you don’t know what you’re doing and most folks don’t. Last anyone needs is a destroyed room or haunted house.
Halloween, having its starts in Ireland as Samhain (meaning “Summer’s End”), is about the passing of the year and a day of the dead. It was originally the New Year’s Eve by the Celtics of the British Isles and France, marking the “death” of the old year and the “birth” of the new year. It was also regarded that the invisible veil between the living and the dead grew to its thinnest point at sundown, thus communication between the worlds is easiest. As written in A Witch’s Halloween by Gerina Dunwich, the folklore goes:
“Every Samhain, a deity known as the Lord of the Dead was said to gather together the souls of all men, women and children who had died during the previous year, and had since been confined in the bodies of animals while waiting to enter the underworld. With their sins expiated, they would be set free to begin their journey to the Celtic underworld of Ti-na-n’Og, whose open gates awaited them.
In addition, homesick spirits were free to roam the mortal world and return to their old earthly homes to seek the warmth of the hearth fire and the company of their living kin. Families prepared offerings of fruits and vegetables and hilltop bonfires, which illuminated the night sky with an eerie orange glow and served as a guiding light for the souls of the dead. These fires were kept burning throughout the night to frighten away any evil spirits intended to harm the living.”
This is roughly how Witches, Pagans and Wiccans celebrate. It is celebrated as a day of remembrance of those who have passed on or as “The Witches’ New Year”. This does not mean that we don’t have Halloween parties or anything of that nature, we just treat it a little differently than the average person. There are various rituals and divinations that can be done and the best way to go about them is through books. I highly recommend the book A Witch’s Halloween by Gerina Dunwich.
That’s all the Black Witch for today!
Also, this is the third annual Samhain Pickers where you submit your info and if you win, I do your divination (Tarot, cartomancy, basic natal chart or dream interpretation).
How to submit:
Type of divination
Send to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Samhain Pickers” in the subject line. Winners are picked on Oct 26. Good luck!
I have had a complete run of late posts for the past few weeks and this one is going to be no different, with a post on the latest day ever, Monday. I really feel like I’ve gotta say something now because this is getting ridiculous.
So, I’ve posted on the BW Twitter that my laptop is finally dead. It passed sometime during this week. Can’t blame it, I was pretty hard on it so it was a long time coming, either way, it’s dead.
When it wasn’t dead, it was on its last legs. The screen had stopped working so I had to hook my laptop to the tv which you could imagine reduced the portability of the laptop. Then there’s the fact the laptop had grown so slow and sluggish that it would freeze for minutes at a time if I wanted to just open a document. The longest freeze time was nearly ten minutes. The laptop was bought new in 2009, it’s almost 2013 and it has dealt with being treated pretty hard. So I kinda was waiting for it to go before getting a new one, which will be coming on Tues.
So now the lappytop is le dead. I did have a friend come over so I could borrow his hard drive reader so I could at least yank some of the latest posts for Black Witch and I did but they’re still in an unfinished state since there’s nothing to clean them up to the point I would like it and put them up. Yes, I do have mobile apps on my tablet and cell phone, Documents to Go, which is awesome, and Google Drive to share my files on between my devices but they’re not as good as finishing my works on an actual full sized computer. Linking is practically impossible, pictures are a headache and the spell checker is not as good on these mobile devices as it is on a computer. These mobile devices are good for me to write out ideas and columns in their rough shape, absolutely fantastic, but not to present writings to the world. This is the only exception because I gotta say something since I know readers are prolly wondering why BW keeps updating so late as of recent.
Thus, this does mean that I am writing. I’m working on this week’s write up, Afro-Punk’s extra piece and so on and so forth on my tablet and cell phone. I plan to go to the library if my cold isn’t that bad (well, it’s just a sore throat but I still don’t want to pass it to others and it’s been coooooooooooold in Baltimore) and update there or just wait for the new laptop and go from there. So I am writing, I just can’t update when I like. This means I’ll have to push the Etsy store reopening to Halloween (I’ve been keeping it under wraps because I wasn’t sure what would happen but it was going to be on the 16th) and no trips to NYC for Halloween.
So that’s what’s been going on. Expect the new piece on Monday (Tuesday at the latest).
So I was on the Black Witch tumblr, tumblin’ like always and look at what I found on my dashboard:
Oh. My. Gods. No. Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.
I don’t know what site this is – I shall hereby declare thee webpage Spellz-R’n-Us, and it is done – but man, I really hope no one took that seriously. I mean, really? Okay, let’s go over what’s wrong with the whole picture, starting with the glaringly obvious.
– It’s titled “Baby Spell”. Not fertility spell or anything potentially legit sounding but “Baby spell”.
– It’s either “to make a baby or find love”, a major red flag because those aren’t very similar. At all.
– ‘Dat ad. It does not help the corniness and shadiness of it all.
– What you will need for this spell: Rose peddles – I mean, petals. That’s it. Yes there is such thing as hand magick, meaning no materials used but your own mind and ability, and I am usually a fan of minimalism but this spell is a dud from the start
– The casting instructions: First of all, handclap for the American public education system and American politics snipping it up, what stunning prose we all have witnessed. It was a twist between a rejected Justin Bieber song and adolescent stupidity/horniness in pure form.
This whole spell is a total joke but the wording, oh dear gods. I am a big fan of free verse poetry but this person simply has zero idea how lines work but then again it could be cut into by the Spell Index, I wouldn’t know and perhaps no one will through this person’s aversion to punctuation. Let us put special attention on the spelling and wording, bearing in mind that this is a spell for either to make a baby or be given love (something the writer of the spell has zero concept of). Now, if someone made a slipsies somewhere by forgetting a comma or something like that, I would not be that harsh because even this blog probably has some typos lurking on here but the writing is super bad. Let us focus on the word “pragnetse”.
The word looks like it should rhyme with “magnet”. And the snippet it is in, “…baby give me pragnetse your so hot…”, oh my gods, the person who wrote it must be 12, there is no care towards fertility nor the desire of deep love which transcends the physical. This is not love, the person would have been more on point if she or he wrote “Oh man, let’s bone. Babezzzzzz.” And you can’t give someone a pragnetse or pregnant. While it is the creation of the gift of life, you still can’t give someone pregnants like, “Here you go, nine months of hormonal roller coasters and limited range of movement to finish with a pain that could kill a man and a new life with a wailing, shrill thing that hopefully won’t grow up to be a serial killer or genocidal maniac.” No. This isn’t even internet talk the person wrote, it’s incoherent and conflicting babble. (What if the person just wants love? Do they take that part out now?)
And this, “…baby baby come to me in reall life and my dreams” – No. Absolutely zero concept on love, I’m not letting up on this point. If you love someone (and all is healthy between you two), they shouldn’t consume your waking and dreaming life. This person has clearly never been in love or experienced a genuine relationship. This is, like, the 50 Shades of Grey of spells: innaccurate beyond belief, jaw dropping for those who are more informed and the question begs, “Who greenlighted this stuff?”
Speaking of the action part, “then throw the rose peddles in the air and the spellis done”, lol-worthy. Dude, “peddles” and “spellis”, I am dyin’ over here. Oh man, does this person really think this spell will work with no raising energy and incoherency all around? There is no structure, you’d have to do more than chuck some roses petals in the air and that’s that, especially to inspire something as deep as fertility or love. Way more.
Man, this spell – and site – is all sorts of terrible. And oh look, apparently there’s spells for body swaping so all the pathethic guys asking me this can perhaps go over there. Hopefully no one, animal or human, dies as a result of this and if the spell is as bad as this one it won’t work.
All joking out my system (not really), here’s the thing: spells like the one I just dissected above would never work, a forever dud. Believe it or not but spells – good spells, well constructed spells – do have a method to their madness. Regardless whether the spell requires a lot of materials, some materials or none at all, there is a form and function to them all. And this is for any type of spells, simple to complicated.
Spells need well defined purpose. The spell above wasn’t, it was supposed to be used for two extremely different things. For a spell to work, it needs a solid purpose, simple as that. If there’s no purpose, then there’s no point. The purpose could be as little as just wanting to have a good day after a long streak of strife and trouble, it doesn’t matter as long as it is well defined. Even multi-purpose spells (which is what that spell tried to be and failed miserably at) are closely related and pretty general in function, not asking for something in particular.
Like attracts like in spells, the person who wrote the spell above apparently had the faintest of faint ideas of that but still missed the mark about a mile wide. In case a couple readers couldn’t figure, love and fertility aren’t easy spells and would need materials of some sort or at least a lot of skill to go material-less. And the actions you perform also have to be more than what the pseudo-spell above wrote. There has to be some meaning in what you do, what would chucking petals in the air have anything to do with having kids or finding (fake) love? If you want something palpable to occur, there would have to be more than just that. Now, if this person had better wording and said to have the rose petals released on a gusty day, I’d be a little more lenient because the symbolism is carrying – if you just want the love part, the whole motion is pretty useless for the baby part. There just has to be a defined point in what is being done.
It would also be smart to mention that without energy movement, you pretty much wasted your time and money. There is no movement of energy here, just say some poorly written words and hurl some rose petals. There’s no pulling of energy, no raising of energy, nothing. Just empty movements.
Frankly, this spell is a fantastic picture of what a skeevy looking spell looks like and why you shouldn’t use spells you found on the internet.
That’s all for Black Witch, sorry this post was super late! Please know also that this is the third year of Samhain Pickers! Samhain Pickers is the yearly divination sweepstakes that I do. Here’s how to enter:
Send an email to email@example.com with “Samhain Pickers” in the subject line and your:
And winners will be selected on Oct. 26 so get crackin and submit! Also there will be a BW Ustream chat (I am learning to get better at those) on Samhain at 4:30 PM EST. Be there!