I was asked to turn this into my own official post, so I’ll do that and save it in the Grimoire for my followers to read at their leisure. I’m expanding upon it for the purpose of my Hylian Sorcery work, as it’s been a while since I wrote something pertinent in that vein.
As a huge fan of the magical practices of Europe in general, but especially Northern and Western Europe and the British Isles, I studied the practices and folklore about bardic magic and minstrelsy for several years. In recent years, I’ve expanded upon the kernels of musical magic practice I’ve found, and turned them into a viable tradition. That tradition sat on a shelf and I didn’t use it for much of anything, as I love singing but I can’t play instruments or read music or anything really useful.
Imagine my surprise when I started working out the Hylian magicks… and discovered that my musical magic practice might in fact be useful.
Now, my favorite piece of lore was the one about the three kinds of magical music:
- geantraighe, music of joy and animation and motivation
- goltraighe, music of sorrow and release
- suantraighe, music of sleep and fascination
These fascinated me. And when added into the practice of Hylian Sorcery, the three kinds of magic become actually very significant indeed. Each associates with a different one of the three goddesses, you see. Din, for example, connects to geantraighe, the magic and music of Earth. Nayru’s magic is goltraighe (which incidentally is also about love and emotion, in addition to sorrow), connected to the magic of Time (which heals all wounds). And of course, Farore, who wields the magic of Wind, also summons the music of suantraighe.
In addition, these are the guidelines of magical music in the Hylian tradition, which I pieced together from various places (some fictional, some folkloric)-
- When making music, the instrument is your “circle.” It sets the stage for your singing or chanting. Other methods might include singing in a group with other voices acting as the “circle.” Either way, the solo voice/ main thread is the casting agent of an actual spell, and the instrument creates a circle of force around them. The instrument played doesn’t even have to be a melodic one- a simple rattle will do.
- The power of the song is in the voice, not the words. The words merely direct the power, giving the listener something to latch onto while the wave of force is carried on the song. Sometimes the words confine and bind the power too, which I liked- I’m a wordy person. But it interested me that someone could sing a simple song that had nothing to do with spell-breaking, and instead had to do with weeping about lost love, and one could use it to break a curse.
- True enchantment doesn’t even require a subject to hear the song. It’s the power of the caster which is moved by the song’s magic, and sometimes that’s all that’s needed. Of course, if the subject is also a listener, the spell will often hold longer. But I liked the knowledge that I could sing into something’s spirit without having to actually be in audible range.
For fictional references, I recommend the Mermaid’s Madness by Jim C Hines, the Spellsong Cycle by L E Modesitt Jr. and the Bedlam Bard series by Mercedes Lackey, for starters.
As for folklore… well, you’ll probably do well by starting your research in Irish harper and bardic traditions, like I did.
(For good luck and general success)
Find a coin that is slightly bent or damaged and keep it in a dark place until the new moon.
On the night of the new moon, once the sun has set, fill a glass or crystal bowl with water, stirring in one teaspoon of salt for every cup you include.
When it is completely dark and you are sure you will be able to see the new moon, take the water outside, with the coin in your pocket or in your hand, and place the water under the the moon.
Then with the coin in your hand, look up at the moon and incline or bob your head, and say:
"Bright fair moon
This coin I turn
Once for you
Once for me
Once to good fortune earn”
Turn the coin over in your hand as you say it, then place it in the water. Leave it a minimum of three minutes but take the water in before the light of dawn.
Use the water to sprinkle on yourself or anything you want good luck and an extra boost with, taking care the rest of the water isn’t exposed to daylight.
Return any you haven’t used to the earth before the next new moon appears. Keep the coin in a dark place also and you can reuse it each month.
From my book modern charms.
Dr. Walter Freeman and the Ice Pick Lobotomy,
During the late 19th and early 20th century many doctors began to experiment with psycho-surgery, the use of brain surgery to treat mental illness. In 1935 a Portuguese scientist named Antonio Egas Moniz introduced the lobotomy, a procedure that won him the Nobel Prize in 1948. Moniz believed that by severing the connections between the frontal lobe and grey matter of the brain, he could calm a patient’s wild emotions and stabilize personality. In the world of psycho-surgery the lobotomy was a groundbreaking procedure that revolutionized treatment of the mentally ill. Eventually the lobotomy became a cure-all for almost any mental illness or developmental disorder. 40,000 were conducted in the US, another 17,000 in the UK. Tens of thousands more were conducted in mainland Europe, the Soviet Union, Japan, and the Commonwealth Nations.
While many patients did benefit from the lobotomy, many more suffered terrible effects of the surgery. It was not uncommon for patients symptoms to worsen. Others suffered permanent brain damage, emotional and psychological instability, memory problems, and decreased cognition. About 5% of all lobotomy patients died from the procedure. One notorious case of a botched lobotomy was that of Rosemary Kennedy, sister of President John F. Kennedy.
Rosemary Kennedy had many learning disabilities during her childhood, but regardless was a very intelligent and sociable young woman. In her late teens and early 20’s she suffered from occasional wild moods swings which psychologist would now diagnose as manic depression. An embarrassment to the Kennedy family, she was coerced into undergoing a lobotomy. In 1941, at the age of 23 she underwent a lobotomy at the hands of Dr. James Watts and Dr. Walter Freeman. The results of the lobotomy caused permanent brain damage that reduced her intelligence to that of a 2 year old. She had to be hand fed, bathed, diapered due to incontinence, and institutionalized until her death in 2005.
Regardless of it’s negative consequences, physicians only focused on successful cases and continued practicing lobotomies. Originally the lobotomy was a complex procedure. Then in 1945 Dr. Walter Freeman, the same man who helped perform Rosemary Kennedy’s procedure, invented the transorbital lobotomy. Also called the “icepick” lobotomy, the procedure was very simple and crude. After administering an anesthetic, the surgeon placed an orbitoclast (essentially an icepick with depth increment markings) above the eye but below the upper margin of the eye socket. The surgeon would then tap the orbitoclast with a mallet to puncture the thin plate of the sphenoid bone located behind the eyes. The orbitoclast was then inserted 5 cm into the brain and rotated to sever the connections in the frontal cortex. The procedure was then repeated through the other eye.
The icepick lobotomy was so simple that surgeons were not even required to perform the procedure. As a result the icepick lobotomy was a common procedure in mental asylums, then terrible hell holes run by people who had little or no credentials. Dr. Freeman himself performed icepick lobotomies on an outpatient basis from his office. It even became common for parents to have their children lobotomized for minor problems such as minor depression or even misbehavior.
Eventually, health care professionals began to realize the negative effects of the lobotomy, with the procedure being recognized as dangerous pseudoscience by newer physicians. By the 1960’s lobotomy procedures began to decline in prevalence as it was replaced with new treatments such as therapy and administration of medications. By the 1970’s the lobotomy died out all together, and was banned in many countries.
- DIY: Make New Candles out of Scrap Wax
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- Make Your Own Aromatic Beeswax Candles
- 25 DIY Decorative Candle Making Ideas/Tutorials
A spell for protection for all your animal friends and familiars in your life.
What You’ll Need:
- Sage (White Sage is endangered so I used a sage scented candle as to not further the harm)
- A sprig of Juniper large enough to lay across a candle (if you pick this fresh, be sure to thank the tree for aiding you)
- A green candle (if you didn’t substitute one in earlier. White also works)
Step One: Gather as many of your animals together in one area as possible. For those not able to be present you can take the blessing to them at a later point.
Step Two: Lay the sprig of Juniper (and the sage if you have it natural) across the candle top near the wick but not smothering it. Light the candle and let the flame reach up and burn away at the juniper.
Step Three: Walk a circle around the area with your candle and chant the following:
Juniper protect them from ills inside and out
From matters of heart to matters of doubt
May their days be long as your branches are tall
And may my love for them protect them from any and all
Burn on, burn bright, let my magick cast its spell
Against every harm let this enchantment repell
Let them be happy
Let them be healthy
Let their lives be filled with fun
And now with this fervent wish
Let this spell for them be done
Step Four: For any animals not present at the circle, this is the time to take a blessing to them. Hold your hand above the candle and let it soak in the energies of the smoke from the burning juniper. Then press your hand (finger if it’s a smaller friend) to the head of the animal and say I protect thee.
Step Five: Let the candle burn itself out naturally and the spell is done.
Vamp Attack Halloween Cake
I made a red velvet cake figuring the deep red colour is nice and vampy and perfect for Halloween. The filling added to the look in all its raspberry deliciousness oozy gruesomeness. But the best part about the vamp attack cake? Its pretty simple to decorate.
The vampire bites were made easy thanks a set of plastic costume teeth, you know the ones that make you look like your wearing a mouth guard rather than having fangs. Who knew they’d have other uses than looking dorky, pressing the fake fangs into the outer fondant layer of the cake leaves a prefect bite mark. A bit of red makes the bites stand out against the stark white of the cake, giving you a yummy Halloween centrepiece.
Vamp Attack Cake
- 600 grams white fondant
- plastic vampire fangs
- 2 cup fresh or thawed raspberries
- 6 tablespoons sugar
- 3 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
To make the filling-
- Combine the raspberries, sugar, cornstarch, vanilla and lemon juice in a small saucepan. Cook, until the raspberries begin to break apart and lose their juices.
- Press the mixture through a fine sieve to remove the majority of the pips, return the strained mixture to the pan, Stir, and cook until the filling boils and thickens (about 5 minutes). Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely. While the filling is cooling make the cakes.
- Put 2 tablespoons of the filling aside to make the fake blood for the outside of the cake.
Red Velvet Cake
- 3 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted
- 170 grams butter, softened
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 6 tablespoons red food colouring
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
To make the cake-
- Preheat your oven to 180°C. Grease and lightly flour two 8 inch cake pans, line the bottoms with baking paper circles and lightly flour the sides.
- Add the butter and sugar to your mixer bowl, beat on medium until very light and fluffy, it will take a few minutes.
- Add in the eggs, one at a time, beat well after each addition.
- Stir the red food colouring, cocoa, and vanilla in a small bowl to form a paste . Add the red paste to the batter and mix well, evenly dispersing the colour.
- Mix the salt into the buttermilk. Add a third of the buttermilk and a third of the flour to the batter, beat until just incorporated (do not over beat). Repeat with the remaining thirds.
- Stir the vinegar and baking soda in a small bowl. Add to the batter and mix well.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl making sure all the ingredients are evenly mixed and the batter is smooth.
- Divide the batter evenly between the two cake tins. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for 1 hour. Gently remove the cakes from the tins and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. While the cakes are cooling make the vanilla frosting.
Fluffy Vanilla Frosting
- 200 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon of milk (if necessary)
To make the frosting-
- Beat butter with mixer on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Switch the speed to low-medium so you don’t end up in a cloud of sugar.
- Add the confectioners’ sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the side with a spatula.
- Add the vanilla and beat frosting on high for about 3 minutes, it will get very pale and be light and airy. If the frosting is too thick beat in a little milk.
Raspberry Chocolate ‘Blood’ Sauce
- 2 tablespoons raspberry filling
- 1 tablespoon cornflour
- 1 teaspoon red food colouring
- 1 teaspoon chocolate syrup
To make the fake blood-
- Strain the raspberry filling to make sure there are not leftover seeds. Add all ingredients to a small bowl and mix well . The Chocolate syrup will give the fake blood a bit more realistic colour.
To Assemble the cake-
- Trim the raised tops off each of the cakes. Cut each of the cakes into 2 even layers. ( I finally bought a cake cutting wire, its the best thing ever people! If you don’t have one I’d really recommend it, even layers every time!)
- Spoon roughly 1/2 of a cup of the vanilla frosting into a piping bag. Place bottom layer of cake onto plate. Pipe a ring of frosting around the edge of the cake to stop the raspberry filling escaping.
- Spoon in a third for the raspberry frosting and smooth over. Top with the next layer of cake and repeat the piping and filling, finishing with the top layer of cake.
- Spread a thin crumb coat of vanilla frosting over the entire cake.
- Spoon on the remaining frosting and spread in a thicker smooth layer over the entire cake.
- Dust your work surface (I use a silicone mat) with a little cornflour and roll out the fondant to roughly 7mm thickness.
- Drape the rolled fondant over the cake. Smooth the fondant over the cake, starting at the top then working down the sides. Pull the fondant away from the cake sides as necessary to avoid creases forming.
- Run the fondant smoothers over the top and around the sides to get a nice flat Finish.
- Trim the excess fondant from the base of the cake with a sharp knife.
- Now for the fun part. Press fang marks all over the cake using the plastic teeth.
- Spoon some of the raspberry chocolate ‘blood’ into a small squeesy bottle. Fill each of the teeth marks with a little fake blood. Add drips and puddles where you like.
- To make the spray splatter look, start by placing the cake on top of newspaper to ensure you do not make a mess. Make sure you cover the wall behind too.
- Empty most of the remaining raspberry chocolate sauce from the squeezy bottle.The little bit of sauce left the the bottle should squeeze out in a splatter. The less sauce in the bottle the finer the spray with be. Go crazy and cover the cake as much as you like.
Materials: jar (with tight lid), glitter (silver and purple), dried lavender, olive or veggie oil, warm water, confetti stars (white and purple), dash of purple food coloring, clear glue.
Purpose: To not only promote a sense of calm and control, but to give you an item to actively shake to boost the spell’s effectiveness.
Procedures: Place the glitter and stars in the clean jar first, then add the lavender. Pour just enough oil, glue and coloring in to cover the ingredients in the bottom. Fill the rest with water. Seal the lid up tight, say anything you might want to add to the spell. Shake the jar once sealed, and from then on shake it daily or whenever you need a calming boost.
Colors have many associations and uses in witchcraft. Colored candles are often used as tools in spells, but for a sea witch a candle may not always be the tool they would prefer using. When you need a color association in a spell, try using some colored sand to replace a candle or other item.
If you’re like me, you’ll prefer using items you’ve collected yourself, so buying the brightly colored sand from the craft store may not be best. Here are 3 methods to try out for coloring the sand you’ve collected yourself.
Method 1: Tempera Paint Powder
- Place sand in a suitable container
- Add 1 teaspoon of powder per cup of sand
- Mix thoroughly
- Add more powder if the color isn’t to your liking
Method 2: Food Coloring
- Put sand in a container that will not easily stain
- Add just enough water to cover the sand. If too much is added it will dilute the color and you will have to add more food coloring than necessary.
- Put 1-2 drops of food coloring in the sand and water mixture.
- Gently mix the contents, making sure not to spill any
- Add more food coloring or water to get the desired color
- Strain all of the water from the sand. Try using a cheesecloth over a strainer or sieve to prevent any sand from falling out.
- Spread the sand out evenly on a suitable surface and allow to dry completely.
- Store in a sealed container that will not leak or spill. It’s important the sand is completely dry before storing.
Method 3: Alcohol Based Ink
- Place sand in a sealable container (something like a ziplock bag). Be sure there’s enough leftover room for the sand to move around in the bag or jar.
- Use 1-2 drops of ink
- Seal container tightly, making sure there’s no chance it will open while mixing
- Shake and knead the sand
- Add more ink as needed and repeat step 4 until the desired color is reached.
- Store in a sealed container that will not leak or spill.
There is also a chalk method listed on the source site, but I’ve decided not to include it here. [x]
Although I am not a sea witch, I have lived at the beach for 21 years, so I thought I might have some advice to share for those who are drawn to the practice but have limited access to the water.
This is a big post under the cut. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. I worked very hard on this, please keep links and reblog, instead of reposting.
I’ve been having terrible insomnia lately so a few nights a ago I threw this blend together with what I had on hand. So far it tastes great and has been knocking me out. Great for helping get into a relaxing mode for sleeping.
Materials needed, Mix equal parts of
- Lemon balm
- Cat mint
- Raspberry leaf
Boil then steep for 10 minutes, drink before bed