Welcome to the Witchipedia's glossary of occult terms. Here you will find terms often used in the Pagan, Heathen, magical and occult communities that may confuse a newcomer. This encyclopedia of magical terminology is a wonderful place to get started if you don't know where to start in the Witchipedia. If you don't see the term you are looking for here, feel free to bring your question to the community in our forums or Ask A Witch!
We have 115 terms listed in our glossary with more being added each day.
What you see on this page is the name and first paragraph of the articles in our occult glossary. To view the full article, please click on the title. You will also be able to comment, ask questions and add more information to the article once you've navigated to its page.
Acupuncture - Acupuncture is a traditional healing methodology originating in China. It utilizes small needles inserted into the skin at very specific points to direct the flow of chi. Acupuncture is popular in the West as a drug free treatment for chronic pain and nausea associated with surgery or the treatment of certain illnesses.
Adept - One who has studied and mastered (and continues to study) a magical system is often referred to as an adept. Some organizations have formal guidelines for conferring this title upon a member.
Aeromancy - Aeromancy is a form of divination using the element of Air by observing the sky, particularly meteorological and cosmological events, including the movements of clouds, winds and sometimes comets, the appearance of rainbows and other phenomena such as auroras. The word Aeromancy comes from the Greek words aero for "air' and manteia for "divination".
Akasha - Akasha is a Sanskrit word referring to the base material contained in all things. The literal meaning is "space" or "sky" and the closest Western synonym is Aether and it has also been related to modern Paganism's fifth element, Spirit or ether
Amulet - An amulet is an object that is carried or worn on a person or placed in a location in order to draw specific energy or luck toward that person or location.
Animism - The term animism comes from the Latin word anima meaning "life" or "soul".
Asperge - Asperging is a form of ritual purification involving the sprinkling of liquid on the item, person or area to be purified.
Athame - An athame (pronounced: ath-uh-may) is a (usually) black handled, double sided blade, ritual knife. Its purpose is strictly symbolic. The blade is usually strait and dull. It represents the male aspect of divinity and can be used to cast and cut a circle during ritual as well as to direct energy in much the same way as a wand.
Atheist - Atheist philosophy holds that there are no Gods. It does not mean necessarily that there are no spirits, that there is no magic or that we simply cease to exist when we die, although many atheists do believe that is the case. The word comes from the Greek meaning simply, Godless.
Aura - The aura is a subtle luminescence that surrounds all objects hinting at the energy contained within. With training, individuals can learn to see auras and "read" them, using their brightness, color, and consistency to learn about another's health, mood and personality. Some believe that the aura provides some protection against psychic attack while others believe that the aura is something of an energy overflow, that is, the energy that doesn't fit inside hovers around the outside in the form of an aura. The belief also exists that both ideas are true. Either way, the brightness of the aura is believed to be directly related to the spiritual strength and health of its owner and, as the spirit, mind and body are tightly connected, his or her physical and mental health and strength as well.
Balefire - A balefire is a ritual bonfire used by some Pagan traditions in Sabbat celebrations, particularly Fire festivals such as beltane and Litha. From Old English bǣl = funeral pyre though some believe it is related to Bel.
Banishing - To banish something means to send it away or drive it away from a location. In the mundane world banishment implies that whoever is banished can never return or is no longer welcome, but magical banishment is a little different.
Besom - A besom is a ceremonial broom. It is used to clear an area of negativity, to establish sacred space and for blessing and protecting the home. It is also used in marriage and other ceremonies to symbolize the end of one thing and the beginning of another.
Binding - A binding spell is a spell that symbolically ties the target up restricting his or her actions or keeping him or her tied to another individual, object, place or situation.
Black Moon - The term black moon is the dark of the moon's equivalent of the term blue moon applied to the full moon.
Boline - A boline is a functional ceremonial blade. It is usually kept sharp only on one side of the blade, which is often curved. You will sometimes see a hand scythe or small sickle called a boline. The boline is used for cutting herbs, carving and inscribing words into candles and other things.
Book of Shadows - The Book of Shadows is primarily a witch's diary. It is where he or she records spells, recipes and thoughts and dreams, it is in essence ones very own, unique, personalized and sacred Witchipedia…an ever evolving, encyclopedia, how-to guide, recipe book and personal journal.
Cauldron - The cauldron is a symbol of rebirth, the hearth, of abundance and of well being. Ancient Celtic tales tell of cauldrons that that no one ever went away from hungry and cauldrons that, when the dead were thrown into them, would bring the dead back to life. These days, cauldrons represent the female aspect of divinity, the womb, and are used thusly in conjunction with rods, wands, swords and athames (depending on their size and the tradition) in symbolic representation of The Great Rite.
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