Spells & Rituals In Action

The most common category I get questions about revolves, in one way or another, around spells and/or rituals.  Performing spells & rituals is a big part of what attracts many people to the Wiccan faith.  This article is the first in a series where I will address a few of the most popular questions that people ask about spell work.

In this article, I’ll answer the following three questions:

  1. Can I spell cast with other witches even if I’m solo?
  2. Do I need to cast a spell more than once?
  3. How long does it take a spell to work?

Working With Other Witches

If you’re a solo practitioner, does that mean that you always have to cast spells and perform rituals alone?  The short answer is no, but there are a few things that you should take into consideration before you work with other witches in casting a spell.

Will adding people to the ritual enhance the experience & desired outcome?

Magick is, by and large, perfectly effective whether you’re casting the spell by yourself or with others.  The first question you should ask yourself if you want to cast the spell with others is: “Why do I want to bring others into performing this ritual?”  If the answer is something like “I want to make sure it works,” then you should do some deeper meditation and self-reflection on how you view the effectiveness of your own abilities.  We’ll talk about frequency and duration of spells a bit later.

However, if you’re bringing others into the ritual because the scope of the spell is very large (i.e. you’re performing a ritual for rain to end a dangerous drought) and you want to raise a considerable amount of energy to that end, then by all means, get as many like-minded witches together as you can.  That brings us into the second caveat, knowing who you’re practicing with.

Do I know/trust the individual(s) I’m going to practice with?

Performing magick is a very intimate, sacred practice.  If you decide to work with other witches for a particular spell or effort, make sure that you know them and trust them implicitly.  Be sure that you know, at a minimum, how long they’ve been practicing, what their level of experience in casting spells is, and what particular “flavor” of Wicca/witchcraft they practice.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t do ritual with your friend who is Gardnerian because you’re an Eclectic.  But it’s important to know that you share at least the basics of what you believe.  For instance, if you hold true to the concept of “harming none” but your friend has no aversion to placing a curse on someone, then you may not be an energetic match with them, and your spell may ultimately prove ineffective.

Casting a Spell More than Once

So you cast a love spell during the last full moon.  You felt the energy of the Universe come together with yours, and you closed the ritual feeling pumped and completely certain that it had worked.  Now here it is a whole 10 days later and Prince Charming STILL hasn’t swooped in and carried you off for your “happily ever after.”  Should you cast the love spell again?  The answer depends on a few factors.

First and foremost, you should ask yourself if you feel the spell was ineffective the first time.  You will likely know the answer to this intuitively before you even finish closing the magickal circle, or very shortly thereafter.  If you feel the spell was NOT effective, then ask yourself why.  Did you not feel as though the Universe was receptive to the spell?  Was there something internal that was “blocking” you from raising the amount of energy you feel was required?

Really dig deep and figure out why you feel the spell was ineffective.  If you ultimately settle on re-casting, decide when you’re going to cast the spell again and plan on taking extra measures to ensure that whatever went awry the first time does not go awry again.

Secondly, how was the spell constructed?  This can get a bit confusing if you’re new to magick, but the two main things you want to determine about the spell is intent and outcome.

Intent is the easy part.  You know (or at least, you should know) what your intent is before you begin performing your ritual.  The outcome in this instance means was the spell designed to be a “one and done” kind of spell, or was it meant to be cast a certain number of times, either over the course of consecutive days, moon phases, etc.  I’ll give you an example: You cast a love spell to invite love into your life on the night of the full moon.  The spell that you performed had instructions that, every night for the next seven days, you should light a candle while reciting a special incantation and focusing your energy on the outcome.  In this example, the outcome is that you perform the full spell once, then perform a separate set of acts after that.  In order to maximize the chances of this particular spell being effective, it’s important to follow through on all the aspects of the ritual.

Finally, urgency is a factor.  In the example of a love spell, there’s not as much of an urgent need as, say, performing a spell to aid in a health matter.  For example, if you perform a ritual to rid yourself of that nasty cough that’s been driving you nuts, and after a week it’s not any better, then you might consider re-casting the spell or finding a new spell altogether.  Of course, you should also avail yourself to professional medical care before you worry about the spell.

In the end, there’s no hard and fast rule as to how often you should cast a spell again, if at all.  One of the biggest things people have a problem exhibiting, it’s PATIENCE.  With that in mind, let’s take a quick look at our third question:

How Long ’til My Spell Works?

This one’s a tricky question to answer, and the short answer will probably make you grunt in frustration: it depends.  Magick is not a linear practice by any means.  It’s important to remember that, when working with magick, you’re working with the power and energy that permeates the entire Universe.  On the bright side, that means that you’ve got the potential to do AMAZING things!  On the not-as-bright side, it means that we have to be “rigidly flexible” when it comes to allowing the Universe to bring about the changes we desire.

When you cast a spell, you’re sending your intent out into the Universe.  The good thing is that the Universe instantly responds to that; but we may not be able to perceive that instant reaction.  Our lives are like a gigantic cosmic Rubik’s Cube.  In order for the Universe to get that one pesky little white square over to the other white squares, it may take hundreds of thousands of moves of the cube to achieve.  It will happen, but unfortunately for us, the Universe is not beholden to the man-made concept of time as we understand it.

So if your desired outcome doesn’t happen when you want it to, it could mean that you have to draw on the energy of that pesky “P” word again: PATIENCE.  One of the most maddening things someone can tell me is to “just be patient.”  However, time and experience have taught me that patience is exactly what is needed in order to perform effective magick.

I hope this has given you some additional insight into how spells and rituals work in action.  If you have a question about casting spells or performing rituals, head over to the Contact page and send me a message.  Your question may be part of the next article!

Until next time, Blessed Be!