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The Pagan Path

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Below is a list of definitions of words found on this page, and also, words that apply to the studying of Wicca.

ACOLYTE: a beginner.
 
AEROMANCY: the practice of divination through the examination of the air and sky.
 
AFFIRMATION: the power of positive thinking.
 
AIR: one of the 5 elements.
 
AKASHA: the fifth and most important element.  aka. spirit, ether. 
 
ALCHEMY: the science of transformation.
 
ALEXANDERIAN TRADITION: a Wiccan tradition which came from the teachings of Alex Sanders.
 
ALMANAC: a calendar of months and days relating to the stars and planets.
 
ALTARS: aka. shrines, is your main working area during a ritual.
 
ALTAR CLOTH: is a special piece of material which is used to cover/decorate
your altar, at all times, or just during a ritual.
 
AMULET: an item, usually a necklace or pendant, whcih has been m,agickally charged to ward off negative energies.
 
ANKH: egyptian symbol of eternal life, rebirth and fertility.  Associated with Isis.
 
APPARITION: a vision of a ghost/spirit.
 
ARCANA: secret or mysterious knowledge.
 
ASPECTING: any advanced magickal activity in which a practitioner manifests a particular aspect of the Goddess or God, in thought, feelings, behavior, appearance
 
ASTRAL PROJECTION: out of body travel.
 
ATHAME: is a black handled knife, used solely for ritual work. 
 
AUGUR: a sign of future events.
 
AUGURY: divination based on signs and omens.
 
AURA: the energy field of the human body, visible to the third eye and those with psychic vision.
 
AUTUMNAL EQUINOX: a time when night and day are equal length.
 
AVALON: the mystical Isle of the Dead.
 
AVATAR: the appearance of a deity in animal form.
 
BALEFIRE: a fire usually lit outdoors, which is used for magickal purposes - traditionally at Yule and Beltaine.
 
BANISH: to forcefully drive away negative or evil energies.
 
BARROW: an ancient Celtic burial place. 
 
BELLS: used to magickally cleanse and purify an area which is going to be used for ritual purposes.
 
BELTAINE: aka. May Day, is a time to rejoice in the sun.  Is a fertility festival. 
1st May.
 
BIND: to restrict someones powers.
 
BOLINE: aka. Burin, a white handled used for cutting herbs, cords and inscribing
candles.
 
BOOK OF SHADOWS: is a journal of your magickal journey.  Is a sacred book, which every Wiccan should have.
 
BOWL: used primarily for scrying.
 
BLESSED BE: this is a traditional Witches Greeting.
 
BROOM: aka. Besom, used for magickally cleaning the working area of a ritual.  Usually made from wood.  Often used in handfasting rituals.
 
CAKES AND WINE/ALE: a ritual meal shared between the Goddess and the God, near the end of a ritual.
 
CALLING THE QUARTERS: invitation for the 4 elements - Earth, Air, Fire, Water - to join a ritual.
 
CANDLEMAS: imbolc.
 
CARDINAL POINTS: North, East, South and West.  Can be marked by coloured candles of green, red, yellow, blue.
 
CARTOMANCY: a form of divination using cards.
 
CATHARSIS: the release of magickal energies at the height/climax of a ritual.
 
CAULDRON: is used during many magickal rituals.  Can be used for scrying, and is a feminine tool.
 
CELTIC KNOT: a piece of celtic artwork created from a single unbroken line.  They represent nature of eternity and the Universe.
 
CENSER: is an incense burner, used to burn the incense offered to deities during a ritual.
 
CENTERING: balancing your energies through meditation and breathing excercises.
 
CHAKRAS: are areas of energy in the body.  There are seven main chakra points on the body.  Can be opened through meditation.
 
CHALICE: is used in ritual to hold the wine.  Is symbolic of the womb.  Represents the Goddess.
 
CHANNELING: guiding, transmitting or directing energy or power.
 
CHARGING: filling an object of your choice with power.  Items that can be charged include athames, gem stones, herbs, jewellry etc.
 
CHARM: something which protects the bearer from evil.
 
CIRCLE: most ritual work in Wicca is done within a magickal circle.  Used to form a ring of protection around the practitioner.
 
CONE OF POWER: energy raised during a ritual.
 
CONSECRATION: the act of creating sanctity/purity.  Most Wiccan items, especially the Book of Shadows should all be consecrated.
 
CORDS: type of special ropes used during specific rituals.
 
COVEN: the name given to a group of Wiccans.  Usually lead my a High Priestess and Priest.  Traditionally a coven would have 13 or more members.
 
COVENSTEAD: the meeting place of a coven.
 
COWAN: a once derogotary term for a non witch.
 
COYOTE ENERGY: trickster energy.
 
CRAFT, THE: another name which Wicca is known by.
 
CRONE, THE: the last stage of the Goddess, in her triple aspect.
 
CURSE: negative energy brought or directed towards a certain person.  Usually used to create bad luck or pain to said person.
 
DARK MOON: when the Moon is totally elipsed by the Earths shadow.
 
DEDICATION: same as initiation.
 
DEITIES: are the Gods and Goddesses worshipped in WIcca and other religions.
 
DEOSIL: clockwise - sunwise.
 
DIVINATION: name given to all forms of predicting the future.
 
DRAWING DOWN THE MOON: taking in the moons energies.
 
DRUID: a group of Celtic people who saw nature as the divine.  Followed a religion similar to that of Paganism.
 
EARTH: one of the 5 elements.
 
ECLECTIC: a Wiccan tradition which is based on the various belief systems of Wicca.
 
ELEMENTS: Air, Fire, Water and Earth.  Are the things that make up nature.
 
ELF: a mischevious fairy.
 
ELIXIR:  water charged by a crystal.  Elixirs can be made more powerful if made during full moons or sabbats.
 
EMPOWERING: moving energy into a specific object, usually done during a ritual.
 
EOSTRE: Is the Spring Equinox.  21st March.
 
EQUINOX: the two times in any one year where day and night are equal.
 
ESBAT: this is the word given to the celebration of the full moons.
 
EVOCATION:  the calling up of spirits and other non - physical deities.
 
EXORCISM: expelling a demon or negative energy from a person, animal or property.
 
EYE OF HORUS: a symbol of protection against evil spirits and of seeing spirits.
 
FAMILIAR: an animal, either a pet or spiritual entity, which will help and guide you through your magickal journey.
 
FAST: to purify body and mind.
 
FIRE: one of the 5 elements.
 
FUTHARK: runic alphabet.
 
GAIA: mother Earth.
 
GARDNERIAN WICCA: a tradition of Wicca desnceded from the teachings of Gerald Gardner.
 
GLYPH: a talisman, which bears the name and date of birth of the wearer, which will protect the wearer from ill luck.
 
GNOMES: an "entity" or "elemental" that is closely associated with the Earth element.
 
GNOSTICISM: a religious movement which believes in the intuitive spiritual knowledge.
 
GOD: is the name given to the male deity in Wicca.
 
GODDESS: is the name given to the female deity of Wicca.
 
GREEN MAN: another name for the God - particularly while he is in his fertility aspect.  Is seen as a champion and environmentalist.
 
GRIMOIRE:  is a magickal workbook/diary similar to the Book of Shadows.
 
HADES: is the Greek God of the Underworld.
 
HAG: the crone aspect of the Goddess.
 
HANDFASTING: a Wiccan Rite of Passage - is the name given to a Wiccan Wedding, and the eternal joining of two people.
 
HANDPARTING: similar to a divorce, where the ties created in a Handfasting are symbolically cut.
 
HEDGEWITCH: a witch who practices alone, according to their own beliefs.  A hedgewitch will be very involved with nature.
 
HERB: any plant used in magic.
 
HERBALISM: the art of using and working with herbs to achieve a desired result.
 
HEREDITARY WITCH: a person who has inherited their craft from a closely linked family member.
 
HIGH PRIEST: the male leader of a coven.
 
HIGH PRIESTESS: the female leader of a coven.
 
IMBOLC: represents the quickening of Light and Life.  1st February.
 
INITIATION: a process where a person is initiated into a coven.  Self initiation is when you personally initiate yourself into the Wiccan religion.
 
INVOCATION: an appeal or petiton to a higher power - such as deities.  Is like a form of prayer.
 
JUJU: an African magickal charm.
 
KUNDALINI: is a type of meditative concentration. aka, chakra meditation.
 
LABRYS: a symbol of the Goddess.  Is a double headed axe, commonly found in ancient Crete.
 
LAW OF THREE: a Wiccan belief that all our deeds, whether good or bad, will come back to us three fold.
 
LITHA: Is the Summer Solstice.  21st June.
 
LUGHNASADH: Is the first festival of the harvests.  1st August.
 
MABINOGI: traditionally a set of 4 welsh folk tales.
 
MEGALITH: a huge stone momument or structure which can be used for religious purposes e.g. Stonehenge.
 
MENHIR: an ancient single standing stone.
 
MODRON: is the Autumanal Equinox.  21st September.
 
NECKLACE: represents the power of the Goddess, and the circle of rebirth.  Most commonly tend to be made from Amber.
 
NEW MOON: when the Moon is completely covered by the earth's shadow.
 
OGHAM ALPHABET: is the sacred driud alphabet.  Based on certain trees.
 
OIL BURNER: used to burn oils offered to deities during a ritual.
 
OLD ONES, THE: Wiccan name given to the Goddess and God.
 
OLD RELIGION: another name given to the Craft.
 
PENDULUM: a divinatory device usually made out of a quartz crystal, and a thick piece of string or a chain.
 
PENTACLE: is another of the most recognised symbols of Wicca.  It has the form of a 5 pointed star, but is not surrounded by a circle.
 
PENTAGRAM: is one of the most universally recognised symbols of Wicca.  Has the shape of a 5 pointed star inside a circle.
 
POLARITY: concept of equals/opposites e.g. Yin Yang.
 
POLYTHEISTIC: a religion - like Wicca - that does not adhere to any one deity.
 
PRAYER: when you focus all our energy and wishes onto one single deity.
 
QABALA: a body of occult knowledge which is said to contain all of the secrets of the universe.
 
REINCARNATION: the name given to the rebirth of a person into a different form, after they have died.
 
RITE: another name given to a ritual.
 
RITUAL: a time when we offer gifts, prayers, and worship deities or nature.  Is a special/sacred ceremony.
 
ROBES: a special garment which is saved specifically for spell working.  Can be made from any colour or material. 
 
RUNES: an ancient form of Scandinavian divination.  Consists of 25 letters.
 
SABBATS: make up the wheel of the year.  Are the eight special festivals celebrated in Wicca.
 
SALAMANDER: an entity that is closely associated with the Fire element.
 
SAMHAIN: aka. Hallowe'en, is the Death Festival, and marks the descent of Winter.  31st October.
 
SCOURGE: is a tool of discipline, and can be used to generate energy.
 
SCRYING: the technique of focusing thought onto a magickal tool such os a mirror or bowl of water, in order to recieve an image or message.
 
SEPHIROTH: spheres on the Tree of Life.  Each sphere represents an aspect of life and spiritual enlightenment.
 
SOLITARY WICCA: when Wicca is practiced by a single practitioner, alone, without the aid/help of a group/coven.
 
SOLSTICE: the winter and summer solstices are the shortest and longest days of the year.
 
SPELL: a form of magickal ritual.
 
SPIRAL: a symbol of the element spirit.
 
SPIRIT: one of the 5 elements. aka. akasha.
 
SUMMERLANDS: the land of the ever young in celtic mythology.  It is also said to be the place were Witches go once they have died.
 
SWORD: is a tool which is interchangeable with the Athame.  Is a masculine symbol.  A sword is only ever used for cutting the hand fasting cake.
 
SYLPH: an entity that is closely associated with the element of Air.
 
TALISMAN: a ritually charged object, usually a cyrstal or other precious gem stone, used to attract a certain force or energy to its bearer, and the ritual work being performed.
 
TAROT: a set of 72 cards, which are used as a form of predicting the future or learning of our past.  Symbolise different aspects of events, character and influences in our lives. 
 
TREE OF LIFE: is based on the ancient symbols of the Qabbalah. 
 
UNDINE: an entity closely associated with the Water element.
 
WAND: is a tool traditionally made of wood.  Used for opening/closing circles, to draw symbols on the ground, direct energy, and invoke deities.
 
WANING MOON: the shrinking cycle of the moon.
 
WATER: one of the 5 elements.
 
WAXING MOON: the growing cycle of the moon.
 
WICCA: is a nature based, neo - pagan religion based on the pre Christian traditions of Britain.
 
WIDDERSHINS: anti - clockwise.
 
WITCH: is the name given to a person who practices Wicca, or Witchcraft. 
 
YING YANG: the idea of opposites, found mainly in Chinese Philosophy.
 
YULE: Is the Winter Solstice.  21st December.
 

this page is constantly being updated so keep checking back for more definitions of Wiccan terms. Vicki x

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