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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!

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We have 342 terms listed in our glossary with more being added each day.

What you see on this page is the titles and first paragraph of the articles in our occult glossary whose titles begin with the letter C. 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.

cakes and ale

In the magical community, cakes and ale refers to a communal meal that takes place as part of magical ritual or a Pagan religious ceremony. This sharing symbolizes and celebrates abundance and our gratitude for it and often serves as a grounding activity. The meal is usually symbolic, a bite or two and a sip and often accompanied with the wish that those partaking may never hunger and never thirst . Although it may be referred to as cakes and ale, the food and drink vary. It is often a baked...

Calling The Quarters

Calling the Quarters, or Quarter Calling is a ritual performed at the start of magickal or spiritual work by many magickal practitioners and is prescribed by several traditions including many types of Ceremonial Magick, particularly Golden Dawn and Wicca and its many offshoots. It is an evocation to elemental energies tied to the the four cardinal directions of the compass meant to bring the energies into the magick circle to make them available for the practitioners' use and to bolster the...

Candle

A candle is a block of wax or tallow surrounding a central wick that is burned for illumination. Using Candles for Ritual Candles are used extensively for ritual and ceremonial purposes in many spiritual traditions around the world. Candles provide mood lighting and set the stage for many important rituals. A candle procession is a ceremonial act by a group that serves to raise focus and engagement of the group. The beauty and drama of the procession provides a subtle raising of energy....

Candomblé

Candomblé means 'dance in honor of the gods' and music and dance are an important part of Candomblé ceremonies. Candomblé originated with African slaves in Brazil. It is a mixture of traditional Fon, Bantu, and Yoruba beliefs blended with a generous portion of Catholicism. Catholic saints that bore a resemblance to African deities and ancestor spirits were worshiped since slaves were persecuted for the worship of non-Christian deities. The African slaves also fraternized with the indigenous...

Cardinal Sign

A cardinal sign is a zodiac sign whose beginning occurs at the moment of seasonal change. The sun passes into Aries at the moment of the Vernal Equinox, it passes into Cancer at the moment of the Summer Solstice, the sun enters Libra at the moment of the Autumnal Equinox and the sun enters Capricorn at the moment of the Winter Solstice. The word cardinal comes from the Latin word for hinge , noting that these signs mark turning points in the year.

Cascarilla powder

Cascarilla powder is a ritual powder made from crushed hens' eggs used primarily for protection and banishing. Cascarilla powder is popular in Latin American (ex Santeria and African diaspora (ex Hoodoo) traditions and can usually be purchased in shops catering to these markets. It is often packaged in a little white paper cup, resembling a disposable catsup cup. The powder is usually tightly packed and, if stored for any time, will have begun to solidify and may come out as a solid chunk of...

casting a circle

During spellwork and some magico-religious rituals, a Circle is cast to define the sacred ritual or work space and separate it from its mundane surroundings. This Circle is a construct of energy and it is designed to contain energy within it. Beyond that, the purpose of the Circle can vary by tradition. Casting a Circle for Spellwork During spellwork, the Circle creates a sort of storage unit for the energy of the spell. During the creation of the Circle, any energy not associated with the spell...

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 wands, swords and athames (depending on their size and the tradition) in symbolic representation of The Great Rite. FoldUnfold...

Celestial Longitude

Celestial longitude is a measure of the distance of a celestial body from the Vernal Equinox along the ecliptic in degrees Eastward.

Censer

A censer is a vessel that is used to hold smoldering charcoal (from a fire or self-igniting disks) upon which one burns the herbs, resins, gums, etc that make up their incense. Censers can take many forms, they can be large, elaborate swinging vessels hanging on three chains, similar to those used by the Catholic Church, they can be a metal dish upon a stand (like a tripod) or any fireproof vessel that is suitable for holding the smoldering charcoal. Your choice of censer will come down to...

Centering

Centering is an energetic practice. When we center ourselves we gather our energy, which may be scattered in many different places, and we harness it toward our intention. For example, if you are about to give a speech, you may find yourself nervous and scattered. Your energy may be focused on what other people will think of your speech, or it may be connected to a person you had an awkward encounter with yesterday, or it may be at home fussing over your convalescing pet rabbit, or all of the...

Ceremonial Magick

Ceremonial Magick is a magical modality involving specific ceremonial actions and magical tools to bring about the desired result. Ceremonial magicians are often working toward self-improvement or spiritual enlightenment. Evocation is very often part of the ceremony. Some ceremonial magical traditions include Thelema, Wicca, Enochian Magic and Hermetic Qabalah The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, A∴A∴, Ordo Templi Orientis and Builders of the Adytum are all organizations known for practicing...

Ceremony

A ceremony is an official or formal event, undertaken with intent and often solemnity, often ritualistic in nature or containing ritual elements that celebrates an official occasion (esbat, sabbat, rite of passage) or recognizes and honors an individual or group (including a God or group of Gods).

Ceromancy

Ceromancy is a method of divination using a candle. The candle is lit and the flame examined for clues to the mood and energy surrounding the situation and then the wax is allowed to drip into a bowl of cold water or sometimes onto a piece of paper. The practitioner examines the shapes formed by the melted wax and makes predictions based on his or her interpretation of the shapes. See also lychnomamancy

Chakra

Chakras can be viewed as gateways in the body through which subtle energy flows. These gateways, or nodes, are also points at which the subtle (or astral) body and the physical body are connected. When energy flows freely through the chakras, all is well, but blockages can lead to dis-ease. The word chakra comes from ancient Sanskrit and means wheel or disk with the implication of spinning or turning. According to Hindu tradition, the energy of the body is regulated by seven major and...

chaldean sequence

The Chaldean sequence or Chaldean order is an ordering of the seven classical planets in order from the slowest moving to the fastest moving as viewed from Earth: Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, Moon. The planetary hours are based on this sequence.

Chalice

The Chalice is a magical tool used in many magickal rituals in a variety of traditions. It is used to represent the female element and the element of water. The chalice is, simply, a cup, used to hold liquids for ritual purposes. Though its symbolism is similar to the cauldron, its use is slightly different. It is clearly more portable and thus easier to pass around for group ritual and more appropriate for drinking from than a cauldron, and so, the cauldron and the chalice, though they serve...

Channel

A channel is the person or thing through which energy or information flows. See also medium Used as a verb, the word channel describes the process of allowing an outside energy or consciousness to flow through your body.

Chant

A chant is a phrase, usually quite short, that is spoken over and over repeatedly in order to raise energy or induce a trance-like state. A chant may include words or simply syllables and is often spoken or sung to very simple rhythm so that some chants may seem song-like. Some chants include several lines varying on a theme to form a song-like structure, but all include repetition. To induce a trance-like state, a chant should be short and simple with a monotonous rhythm. Often these chants are...

Charge

To charge an item means to apply its energy toward a specific purpose. For example, you would charge a talisman for protection. Some use the word program to describe this process. Charging an Item It is generally believed that an item should be cleansed before it is charged. The process of actively charging an item generally involves raising energy with a specific purpose in mind and directing that energy into the item while declaring your intention out loud. This is often done within the...

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