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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 326 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 H. 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.

Handfasting

A handfasting or handbinding is a ritual that binds two people together. It is often done as part of a wedding ceremony or as the ceremony itself, in place of a wedding or it may be a more temporary arrangement. A handfasting is a magical contract, binding two individuals together as partners in life for a specified period of time - till death, as long as love lasts, forever, a year and a day, etc. Although the ceremony does vary by tradition, it generally requires both individuals to be willing...

Harvest Moon

The harvest moon is the full moon closest to the autumnal equinox. In the Northern Hemisphere, this usually happens in September, though it may happen in October on occasion. In the Southern Hemisphere, this takes place in March or April. Throughout the year, the moon rises at a different time each day. Every moonrise is usually about an hour later than the previous moonrise and the moonrise times cycle throughout the hours of the day all month to rise right around the time of the sunset when...

Heathen

Origin The etymology of the word Heathen comes from a Gothic word meaning person of the Heath or dwelling in the Heath and is similar to the Latin word paganus from which we get Pagan. It evolved to refer to anyone who had not been converted to Christianity and was often used as an insult to mean that someone is barbarous, uncivilized, undisciplined and is often used as a synonym for Pagan as both words have been used in translations of the Bible in place of the word Gentile . Modern Usage...

Heathenry

Word Usage The word Heathenry is used in two ways. The first is to designate a specific polytheistic reconstructionist path based on aboriginal Germanic tradition. The second is to refer to any polytheistic reconstructinist path based on aboriginal traditions from Western Europe including the British Isles, Scandinavia and mainland Germany. These include Odinism, Asatru, Forn Sior and, sometimes, certain forms of Druidry. One who adheres to these faiths usually self designates as Heathen. Moral...

hedgewitch

A Hedgewitch is a witch who practices both wortcunning and hedge jumping, that is, she has knowledge and skills about herbs and also astral projection. Many hedge witches also accumulate a great deal of wisdom about the natural world in general, particular their local ecology. Hedge witches often practice divination as well and act as a intermediary between the spirit or astral realms and the material realm. A hedgewitch is similar to a shaman in many ways but there is no central hedgewitch...

Hellenic

The term Hellenic refers to all things Greek, usually referring to ancient Greek deities, religion, culture, cosmology, tradition, etc. when used within the Pagan community. The term derives from the hellenic language family which includes only Greek, ancient and modern and in common usage, refers as much to modern Greek people, religion, culture, tradition and language as ancient. See also hellenic lore. hellenic polytheism hellenic reconstructionism

Herb

In botany, an herb is a non-woody plant that flowers and sets seed and then dies back to the ground as opposed to a tree, a shrub, a vine, etc. For everyone who isn't a botanist, the word herb refers to any plant that is useful to humans. This includes plants used for flavoring food, plants used for medicine, plants used for aromatherapy, plants from which fibers, dyes and other crafting materials can be gathered and plants that can be used for magickal purpose.

Herbal Bath

An herbal bath incorporates herbs into your bathing experience. This may be in the form of whole herbs, (the most convenient way to do this and the least messy is via bath tea) or by adding infusions, essential oils or other herbal products. An herbal bath allows the magickal or healing attributes of the herbs used to surround the user completely. The skin is the largest organ of our body and can absorb medicine in the form of herb-infused water at a great rate. Ritual baths are also an...

Hex

In common language the word hex is often used synonymously with the words curse or jinx to refer to an unfriendly spell meant to bring about mischief. However, hex is the Pennsylvania Dutch word referring to witchcraft and the people who practice it. One of the most well known of these hex traditions is the hex sign or hexafu. The word hex derives from the Germanic word originally meaning witch. Middle High German hecse, hexse witch . Modern German hexen means to cast a spell/charm, to hex ...

Hieros Gamos

Hieros Gamos (Greek: ιερός γάμος) or Hierogamy (ἱερογαμία) is the sacred (or holy) Marriage and refers to the union of God and Goddess or the combination of masculine and feminine principles. In ancient Mesopotamia, the Priestess of Inanna was symbolically married to the King to ensure the blessings of the Goddess on his rule. I have heard tell that similar rituals were celebrated among Celtic Kings as well, but documentation is scant. The celebration of the Hieros Gamos is often associated...

High Magick

High Magick is magick undertaken to accomplish transformation, self-improvement on a spiritual level, connection with the divine and/or the All. In an historical context, the term High Magick would describe those magical practices, arts, rituals that were primarily practiced by the Higher social classes. These folks would have had all of their basic material needs met with time and money left over to them to engage in sometimes long and elaborate ceremonies and specialized tools and materials....

Hoodoo

Hoodoo is a word that in a general colloquial context may refer to witchcraft or spellcasting in general, for example, someone may refer to witchcraft as hoodoo or say that someone who has been bewitched has been hoodooed . However, in a more specific context, Hoodoo refers to African American folk magick tradition that evolved from a blending of the Central and Western African cultures from which many natives were taken for the American slave trade and the European Christian lore of their...

Hydrargyrum

Hydragyrum is an old name for the metal mercury. From the Greek hydro meaning water and argyros meaning silver.

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