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 313 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.

Absinthe - Absinthe is a distilled alcoholic beverage made from wormwood, anise, fennel, and other herbs. Absinthe is a very strong alcoholic beverage that is usually diluted with ice water and melted sugar before drinking. In good quality absinthe, with actual plant oils, ice water makes the absinthe turn from green (or sometimes dark brown) to milky white. Oils are fats which solidify when exposed to cold temperatures.

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".

Air Sign - In astrology, three signs are ruled by the element of air. These are Libra, Aquarius and Gemini.

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 aether

Alchemist - Alchemy is both a spiritual and magical practice and a philosophy. Its aim is famously to achieve immortality but also to achieve wisdom through transformation of both the alchemist and the substances he manipulates.

Alchemy - Alchemy is both a spiritual and magical practice and a philosophy. Its aim is famously to achieve immortality but also to achieve wisdom through transformation of both the alchemist and the substances he manipulates.

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".

Anointing oil - Anointing oil is sacred oil, blessed and charged and specially formulated for the purposes of sanctifying or elevating sacred objects or people in the service of a higher purpose.

Arete - Arete (ἀρετή) is a Hellenic virtue meaning "excellence". Arete is about being all you can be, the best at what you are, giving it your all, meeting your potential. The word arete is often translated as "virtue".

Aromatherapy - Aromatherapy is the use of fragrance for therapeutic purposes. This often involves the use of essential oils, other plant extracts and various fragrant parts of plants used whole or in pieces. Their fragrance may be inhaled alone, broadcast via a diffuser or added to other products such as massage oils, hygiene products, heat and cold packs and other items used for therapeutic purposes.

Asperge - Asperging is a form of ritual purification involving the sprinkling of liquid on the item, person or area to be purified.

Astral Body - The astral body is the theoretical subtle or spiritual body, a third option between the eternal soul and the body (according to Platonic theory) though some believe that the astral body and the soul are equivalent. The astral body maintains your personality separate from your physical body, the mind and emotions, separate from the physical brain. Some refer to this body as the etheric body. The word "astral" means "of the stars".

Astral magick - Astral magic is a general term for any magic performed on or using the astral plane or involving astral travel or astral projection.

Astral Projection - Astral projection is the act of separating your astral body or your consciousness, from your physical self. It is a (usually) voluntary out of body experience that allows the practitioner to perform any number of tasks as pure consciousness that would be otherwise impossible, or at least more difficult, due to the limitations of the physical body.

Astrology - Astrology is the art and science of predicting certain events and patterns based on the observation of planetary movements and relationships and the study of how these movements and relationships affect terrestrial world events and the health, moods, relationships and personalities of individuals. Predictions are made by observing the relative positions of the moon, sun and planets in relation to one another and their perceived locations in the sky as observed from Earth. It is important to note that while modern Astronomy calculates planetary position from the solar center of the Universe, Astrology uses the ancient geocentric model to make calculations. Once a single study, Western Astrology and Astronomy separated into two different disciplines in the 17th century CE.

Athame - An athame (pronounced: ath-uh-may) is a ritual blade used in modern Witchcraft tradition. In Wicca, it 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.

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