Tutorials Tools of the Craft – P1
Here is a list of the more commonly used tools in Wicca with a description of their uses and perhaps a suggestion or two. We will mostly be referring to ritual and magical use.
- The Altar:
Even though the altar is not exactly a tool to be used, it must be said that a proper altar really makes a difference for me. Now Wicca is a nature religion and to be honest and fair anything in nature with a flat surface could be used as an altar.
If you can fit all your tools that you will be using onto a left over tree trunk in your yard or a forest, then it would make a pretty good altar. However, that being said, for most of us that live in the cities, we don’t always have a smooth flat rock, tree trunk or similar object that can be used and having an altar makes all the difference. We use many tools and having a space to keep them all helps a lot. When selecting an altar, keep simplicity and functionality in mind. What do I mean with that, well first the altar should be high enough, you don’t want to have to bend over every time you need something? So an altar that stands at about hip height or slightly higher should do just fine. Secondly, you want an altar made of wood, the type of wood in my mind is not all that important, but as natural as you can find. Try to have as little metal in your altar as possible, during ritual the altar grounds and stores built up energy and can even function as a sort of battery for your energy, if you include metal parts then all that energy will drain at an alarming rate. Metal conducts energy. You want something that is non-conductive. Finally, a round altar always seems like a good idea. All ritual workings and magic workings should be done in a circle, this is literally a circle draw on the floor or in the dirt (we will discuss this in another tutorial) and you move quite a lot during ritual. And all of your movements happen within the circle or on its edges, so a round table allows for easier movement, where a table with corners might make the movement a little complicated if you have a big altar and a 5 to 6-foot circle.
- An Athame:
The athame is a ritual dagger commonly used in Wicca. An athame (a-tha-me) is one of the tools I find I use the most. Typically, it is a double edged knife with a wooden hilt. If you can picture in your mind the throwing daggers used in the movies, they are similar. The athame is used for the directing of energy, this is done by concentrating your energy into the palm of your hand and through your finger touching the blade, it is then expelled from the tip of the dagger, so having a wooden handle might be the traditional choice, but a metal handle would also work. When holding the athame you would close you hand around the hilt and let you index finger rest on the blade in a “pointing” fashion which means that the blade is simply an extension on your index finger and because of its sharp edge, it helps concentrate the energy better.
Not exactly a traditional ritual tool, it is still something I find that I use every single time I work magic or do any form of ritual. As part of casting the circle I use the salt to purify water used in the consecration of my circle. Also the purifying nature of salt makes it a multifunction tool that can be used in many ways.
Again, not a traditional tool, exactly. But I find I use water quite a lot. It works as part of my circle casting and also for many cleansing rituals. It can also be used in healing magic combined with gemstones. Subjects for a different section of the website.