There is a lot of talk about magical tools and if you need them or not when performing magic, ritual, ceremonies or other actions in the occult realm. My answer to that is NO and sometimes, YES! Great, I’ve already confused you, sorry, but the answer is not as simple as most think it is. Recently, I have seen a few articles about tools in the craft, as well as the regular posting in groups from newbies to the path lamenting that they don’t have money and can’t practice their path because of the lack of tools. Well, I feel compelled to chime in my few cents worth on the topic, as I don’t agree with some of the bits of information out there. Let’s take each part one at a time and see where I’m really coming from.
First of all, NO, you need nothing to follow a spiritual path other than an open heart that is humble and grateful. Ok, let me back up, there are plenty out there who are not humble or grateful and still practice just fine. So, NO, you can just practice whatever your belief is with out a darn thing. Energy and intention comes from you, from within you. You, we, all of us, are spiritual beings on this physical plane and have the ability to create intention, take action, and manifest our desires without anything more than that. You don’t need all of the equipment required to make the pomp and circumstance of some ceremonies and rituals, you can make do very simply without them.
You can honor nature with a little bit of water on a plant and give thanks. You can use something as simple as envisioning lighting a candle. So if you are new on the path, you can honor spirit with nothing more than yourself and intention. If someone is forcing you into purchasing expensive ritual items, run away! They are not acting in good faith, and there are plenty of people out there like that. A spiritual practice is a very personal thing and requires nothing more than your own dedication and practice.
Having said that, there are times that YES, you need tools, and things will go much more smoothly with them! I am NEVER going to cleanse a house without tools of some kind. I am not going to perform certain rituals, ceremonies, healings, etc without certain tools as well. So, if you are just starting out, I’d say that you need nothing but yourself and some basic knowledge, which by the way is a tool. However, once you reach a certain point on your path that you are involving yourself into other, more involved things, then tools are kind of important. Imagine a doctor for instance, he can see a bruise on your leg and say, okay, you banged your knee, be more careful next time. No tools needed to diagnose and recommend a path; however, if you show up at the hospital with a broken leg with the bone sticking out, you’re going to want that doctor to use some tools, correct? Well, that’s my perspective anyway.
So let’s talk a minute about what tools really are. I sort of hinted already that knowledge is a tool. Just like learning about any new subject, gaining new information is important and having that wisdom is a tool you can use and rely on the help you out. So not only is the knowledge a tool and how to use it, but also where you got it from, the internet, books, a teacher or mentor, whatever. Then you have your basic protection devices or substances, salts, drums, rattles, etc things that will shift energy and raise vibrations on yourself as well as your environment in addition to any visualization and inner practice you have for protection. These things are vital in my opinion. I’m not doing any casting or opening up my energy without making sure that I am in a space that is well protected. There are many things out there that would love to attach to a beautiful being like you. For me, these are the very basics that are needed. In my own work, I use many other tools. I have items that have been handed down from generation to generation, I have new items, I have stones and feathers, I have tools that I have been made for various purposes and tools that spirit instructed me to make. It depends on what I am doing or facing which tool I use, how I use it, and why. I don’t know a single witch, shaman, medicine person, or other spiritual elder who does not use some kind of tool, from herbs to feathers, to other sacred items to aid and assist in their spiritual practice.
There is a lot that one can do merely with the mind and meditation, places to travel, work that can be done on the spiritual realms without anything other than your self and your knowledge, but most often even then, it is with the assistance of some kind of a guide which, frankly, is another kind of a tool. If you only want to open your heart and send out love and gratitude, by all means, sit under a tree or in your living room and do that. It is plenty, but to do more, to go deeper, at some point you will require some kind of tools.
I read an article somewhere that stated that tools don’t have any power of their own that it is all only within you. It was really this statement that prompted me to consider writing this article. Everything has energy. Stones have their own frequencies; skulls are very powerful, more powerful that we can even imagine, bones hold onto energy, tools that have been passed down hold the energy of all the rituals and all of the people that have used them. If it were true that tools and other things did not have their own energy, there would be no haunting, no haunted possessions, or environments in the world that held strange energy. Think about it for a minute, why do we cleanse new items before using them if they didn’t hold onto energy? Why do we cleanse our own tools periodically? We do this because they do have energy and they do take it on and absorb it. Devas and other beings like to be in things that we are attracted to, negative entities also like to find things we are attracted to. Every plant, animal item, stone, everything has energy and a frequency, so while you may partner with an item, asking it to work with you, what you are really doing is creating a synergistic relationship between your own energy and the energy of the tool.
I’m a total Harry Potter nerd and there is a famous quote from the wandmaker, Ollivander, “The wand chooses the wizard, Harry.” This is not so far off. You may find that certain tools work better or are more willing to work with some people over others.
I’ll give you an example. I went to a psychic fair one weekend to see some of my friends working there, and one of them was selling some jewelry that caught my eye. It was basically a gemstone marble with a dragon encircling it and holding it in place. I was drawn to two pieces, intending both for myself. I purchased both of them, one was a silver necklace with a dragon holding a malachite marble of good size, the other was a gold toned dragon claw necklace with some rhinestones on the claw holding onto jasper marble of a smaller size, but still lovely. I personally prefer silver, but was compelled to buy both and was given a good deal. When I got home, I cleansed both pieces and I began receiving messages that the malachite one not only did not want to be a necklace, but rather a pendulum, but that it wanted to go to a friend of mine. Clearly, this stone and the entire necklace had its own energy, its own intentions of what it wanted to be used for and for whom it was to be given. I sent the piece to my friend and they are quite happy together. So, clearly these tools have their own energies without being used by any witch at all.
There is so much more to the Craft than just sending out some vibes of your desires and having some cool stuff, yet sometimes, it is only about sending out your vibes of your desires to the universe. It’s complicated. Most things are connected with layers and layers of the spiritual realms we hardly know at all. So if you want to start out on a spiritual journey in the Craft or any other practice, just start. Don’t worry about the tools. Just connect; Spirit will bring you what you need when you need it. Einstein said, “Everything is Energy,” and he’s right. It’s all energy and it will come when the time is right.
2016 copyright by Katie Pifer http://www.witchpetals.wordpress.com