Witch Tip: Anointing Oil Bars

I love to carry power objects like crystals and other tools with me in little pouches as I go about my day. I also love anointing oils, but these can be terribly messy to carry. Even a good, tightly sealed bottle seems to leak as it gets moved about and of course the glass could always break. So I’ve made a simple solution I’d like to share: anointing oil bars.

It’s very easy to make an oil into a solid bar and the result is lovely. You can select any oils, butters and fragrances that you like to create the perfect magical tool for what you need. I should mention that I don’t use available concordances but rather make up my own. So I even experimented with putting things like cinnamon and cocoa into the bars. Any powders or herbs you add will sink to the bottom, but if you’re using this for magic and not necessarily for a moisturizing lotion, it’s all good.

Here’s the recipe, and it’s dead simple:

2 parts oil, or an oil and a butter (think shea butter, etc, not dairy butter…though I like to use tallow)

1 part beeswax (or other wax, but beeswax is to die for)

+fragrance oils or even herbs, whatever your magic work requires

So all you have to do now is melt everything together, then pour it into molds. I love using those flexible ice-cube molds that come in different shapes, very easy to find at thrift stores. But just about anything will do as long as you can pop the bars out when they are cooled and solid.

If you find the bars too oily or too solid, simply melt them down again and add more wax or more oil. They should be a bit oily to the touch, or else they wouldn’t work! Which is why I keep mine in lightweight plastic containers.



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Dreams, Visions, Imagination and Ritual

I wrote in my last post about experiencing visions behind my closed eyes. I’ve come to decide that closed eyes function as the best scrying mirror one can possess. I still haven’t had time to fully investigate and practice this new skill, but already two of my visions have come true, very spontaneously.

Last night I dreamt of war waged by fighter jets in the sky — war above America, though I could see it from my home in Canada. It was a terrifying and immense fight with hundreds of planes and bombs. I never outright expect dreams to come true, though some have, so I’m not anxious about it. There’s some pretty crazy stuff going on in the world right now, but I choose not to focus on it or get upset about it, because that buys into the story of what is happening. I create the world as much as it creates me (and the same is true for everyone). So I neither have to rebel against the world or try to save it. I believe that there is some truth to the idea that we could change the world with a single thought. Certainly I change my own world that easily, moment by moment. I have had moments when I wanted to die, and moments when I was so happy I thought I’d reached enlightenment. The only difference in my circumstances was my frame of mind, my perceptions.

So I do believe that thoughts and the imagination are powerful things. I believe that the real god of the universe is story itself: the true creator of something from nothing. It might seem, then, that I would do a lot of guided meditating, purposeful visualizing and magic spells. I really haven’t done any of that. My spirit journeys always have a question behind them, but very little intent to accomplish anything other than reach some new insight.

I was never one for spells and rituals, mainly because I would have to create the entire ritual by myself, whatever it was for, and I hadn’t created my own context or theory or frame of reference from which to do that. Now I have. I understand for myself how and why ritual works. It fits into my self-created belief system. I believe in the complementary dualism of imagination and actualization, or story and fact. I believe that all enacted stories are really a kind of ritual. And I believe that everything flows from imagination to actualization and back again, and again. For me, enacting a story pushes imagination one step closer to actualization, by bringing it into physical reality.

Anyway, my point is it’s time to practice what I believe. For the first time I’m in a position to craft a truly meaningful ritual or spell that appeals entirely to my own belief system. It’s kind of exciting.



me and tree
me and tree

About a year ago I began to see what I refer to as energy emanating from everything and buzzing around the room. I tune it out most of the time but it never really goes away. When I first saw it, I thought it was a physical thing — it looked a bit like long spider legs dancing on the underside of my desk. But there is no physical explanation; it’s not smoke or mist, though it can look like that. When I look at my hand and focus for a moment I begin to see sparks fizzing off my fingers, or even what looks like interference waves between my fingers. It’s not quite as dramatic as it sounds, but it is real to me and extremely interesting.

I am not a very visual person and certainly never thought I would be able to see energy, so it was a surprise. I played around with it for a while, then largely ignored it. Part of why I gave up on it was because everything I looked at had the same kind of energy streaming off it. To me, if that’s all I could see, it was a useless skill. I wanted to see variations, something that would tell me something about what I was looking at.

Recently I have begun to see two more phenomena, without trying: coloured auras around people, and visions of odd things when I close my eyes for a while.

Seeing colours in the energy is extremely intriguing to me. It is subtle and I think it will take some practice, but I like that too — the idea of having a real skill that takes time to master.

As for the visions when I close my eyes, they are more mysterious. I know what hypnogogic hallucinations are like and these are different — they really are visions, as in pictures that appear in front of my closed eyes. They are something my mind thinks it “sees” through the eyes, not in my imagination (which I tend to feel occurs in the back of my head). They happen before I get to the edge of falling asleep, but you have to understand that I fall asleep very very easily and slip into dreams instantly, which I think is connected to my shamanic skills and generally to the idea of having a foot in both worlds (the ordinary and extraordinary).

Anyway, so far I have seen some baffling things: faces I don’t recognize, images of chaos, some seemingly random stuff. I haven’t been pushing too much to practice or test my ability to experience visions (mostly because I’ve been busy), but I intend to.  If anyone has thoughts or suggestions they would be most welcome!