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Question about Covens and/or Practicing Magic w/others

covens witchcraft magic practicing magic with others witches rituals workings family friends

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#1 bewitchingredhead

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 11:13 PM

I know there are a lot of solitary witches here on this forum (myself included), but I've been wondering what it would be like to practice magic with others and wondered if anyone has any experiences with either practicing magic in a coven or coven-type setting or even just w/other similar like minded people and are willing to share those experiences.

Now that I've been practicing "officially" for several years now, I've considered what it would be like to do some workings with others. I'm very fortunate that I live in a household where my husband was/is always very supportive, even before he really believed in witchcraft. Of course those on here who know me a bit better know that he's pretty much right there next to me now, lol.

I think I've mentioned before that I've done rituals w/my little one and they were particularly powerful even though the working was rather simple. When I mean powerful I mean energetically. There's no doubt about it that when we've done spells together the elements show up full force when called, the circle cast is really felt and the energy raised is just really strong.

Recently, within the past several months- my husband has been doing rituals and/or workings w/me. I've been teaching him over the years and he's fairly efficient with simple Hoodoo spells bc he's been using him the past few years he's been in school. If I need something of his for a working (i.e. personal concerns), it's no big deal. In fact, I keep certain ones in the freezer or fridge depending on when I intend/anticipate using them. Well he's moved past that and started doing workings with me, especially ever since he found out what his "second job" is, lol---- a psychopomp for those who don't know.

We consecrated a few items of jewelry and dedicated them for specific purposes (like protective talismans for when he's working during his sleep) during one ritual. In another working I decided to do a full ritual and cast a circle, called the elements, invoked the guardians, and he called upon his ancestors. What's super crazy to me is that he could actually see them- the boundary between the worlds (or a world, idk since I've never actually seen it, only felt it/knew it was there), his ancestors, and the guardians, which really surprised me, as I'll explain. It wasn't until towards the end of our working (or maybe after or both) that he told me what he saw. The crazy thing is that he told me he saw what he would describe as Angels sitting on top of a tower. He said that when they were invoked, they opened their wings- as if to indicate they heard and would be present/lend their help. He said when we released the spell that they all moved their wings, which to him, indicated their willingness to 'help'. He said some released their wings fully and others, just a bit.

I've never discussed with him what some of the lore states in books (nor has he ever picked up, much less read anything on his own) regarding the possible correspondences of the guardians relating to specific angels. Heck, a year ago he still considered himself an atheist/agnostic atheist. But back to the point. Practicing magic with another person, even though it's only been with family, has been successful and the energy amazing!

I've considered practicing magic with some other witches to whom I'm close. Not necessarily on a regular basis, but I'm def interested in the idea bc of the different types of energies we bring, not to mention different gifts. I've never practiced w/anyone aside from the hubby and my daughter. I'm not interested in joining a coven or assembling one, etc., but I am interested in hearing others' experiences with them if they have them.


Thoughts on practicing magic with others? Personal experiences you're willing to share? The benefits or drawbacks to working w/others (particularly in small groups)?

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I see you're getting your degree in art of the obvious~myself
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Immorality: The morality of those who are having a better time~ H.L. Mencken
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We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves~ Galileo

#2 travsha

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Posted 02 September 2015 - 11:27 PM

I work a lot by myself and a lot in groups. When I was more into western occult I worked with two different mystery schools and now that I focus on healing and shamanic work I still often work in groups. I often work with my wife, working with clients is common (they almost always participate with me rather then me working on them only), and sometimes ceremony might be a larger group with multiple healers working together. I recently hosted San Pedro ceremony in Peru with 4 other healers helping and a large group of participants/clients.

Solitary work can be very powerful on an individual level - when you dont have distractions sometimes you can go very deep. Group work has more overall energy and power in my experience - especially if the ceremony is led well and people work together. A lot of group work I do is also safer in groups because if you are busy dealing with one thing you have someone else to watch your back. If I host healing ceremony for someone partners/assistants become mandatory if the group goes above a certain size. For other ceremonies like making offerings ect a group can add huge amounts of power.

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#3 RoseRed

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 12:23 AM

It can be a beautiful thing. And we're not that far apart.
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#4 Michele

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 03:05 AM

The only thing with covens is, unless you're starting your own, you will have to work the way the leader of the coven works or else everyone is just doing their own thing and running in 8 million different directions. You can do your own thing on your own, but in a coven context it will have to be done the leader's way. So you have to be open-minded and willing to bend a bit in that respect. If you get in with people you get along with, it can be fantastic... or if you don't it can suck, lol. Also, most covens are founded on specific traditions - either known ones or made-up ones. And many if not most also adhere to a specific spirituality. So that has to be taken into account, too. I've been in two covens I loved, and I've checked out several I didn't like. But I'm also very spiritual, and if you're not spiritual there's a good chance you won't like a coven.

M

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#5 bewitchingredhead

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 06:21 AM

I work a lot by myself and a lot in groups. When I was more into western occult I worked with two different mystery schools and now that I focus on healing and shamanic work I still often work in groups. I often work with my wife, working with clients is common (they almost always participate with me rather then me working on them only), and sometimes ceremony might be a larger group with multiple healers working together. I recently hosted San Pedro ceremony in Peru with 4 other healers helping and a large group of participants/clients.

Solitary work can be very powerful on an individual level - when you dont have distractions sometimes you can go very deep. Group work has more overall energy and power in my experience - especially if the ceremony is led well and people work together. A lot of group work I do is also safer in groups because if you are busy dealing with one thing you have someone else to watch your back. If I host healing ceremony for someone partners/assistants become mandatory if the group goes above a certain size. For other ceremonies like making offerings ect a group can add huge amounts of power.

I believe my husband's gifs are more shamanistic. It makes sense considering the Mayans are his ancestors. About a year and a half ago he got a reading locally, as our local occult store has a "psychic fair" to drum up more attention and business for the professional readers, and was told that he needed to connect with his ancestors and that he was a a healer. He took everything with a grain of salt bc he still didn't believe in anything specific regarding the "how" everything we do works and he didn't think he was a healer. He wasn't even particularly fond of people in general :lol: Primarily the whole god/no god thing. He believed in ghosts bc he's seen them his entire life. He believes/ed in my magic, he just wasn't quite sure how it worked. Still neither one of us has belief system regarding anything involving a deity.
I basically went from agnostic to more of an animist/pantheist viewpoint.

Anyway, back to him- there's no way in a million years you could have told me 2 yrs ago that he'd wind up becoming a certified Reiki therapist and/or pyschopomp. Actually the Reiki/healer thing would have been the less probable of the two IMO. As I said, he wasn't even particularly fond of people. He was participating in a Reiki circle once a week, but they had to put it on hiatus bc they outgrew the space they were using (my mentor's shop) and will be starting up at a new place within the next week. He's still working on a degree in business (so he's in school full time and works full time!), but during summer break he utilized it for learning as much as he could about healing, magic and the whole pyschopomp thing.

What's really interesting is that I'm the incredibly outgoing one, but when it comes to the large Reiki healing circles/groups- it didn't vibe with me. He feels the energy in those sessions strongly. I do not. We're both aware that the main reason for that is of course myself. I'm just not open to it. It's hard for me to let go. As a solitary, I think you hit one of the nails on the head for me- it's easier to go deeper when it's just me, no distractions.

However, I'd still be interested in practicing magic w/a small group of people (literally just a few) on a new moon, full moon, or even one of the Pagan holidays.

It can be a beautiful thing. And we're not that far apart.


I actually thought of you when I was writing this! :) I wondered if it was something we planned enough in advance we could def do something.

The only thing with covens is, unless you're starting your own, you will have to work the way the leader of the coven works or else everyone is just doing their own thing and running in 8 million different directions. You can do your own thing on your own, but in a coven context it will have to be done the leader's way. So you have to be open-minded and willing to bend a bit in that respect. If you get in with people you get along with, it can be fantastic... or if you don't it can suck, lol. Also, most covens are founded on specific traditions - either known ones or made-up ones. And many if not most also adhere to a specific spirituality. So that has to be taken into account, too. I've been in two covens I loved, and I've checked out several I didn't like. But I'm also very spiritual, and if you're not spiritual there's a good chance you won't like a coven.

M


I think you're exactly right. Since I don't have a specific tradition or adhere to certain spiritual beliefs/practices, a coven is not something for me. I get along with women well, but any number larger than a few and I'm sure I'd have issues. My sun sign, moon sign and rising/ascendent are all fixed signs too, so that's not helpful, lol. Even though I know myself well enough to know that I don't want to join (or start) a coven, I'm still interested in hearing from people like you who have, particularly when it comes to workings. As Travsha mentioned the group work does tend to produce more energy and power in general/for the most part and I'd just like to experience that every once and a while.

For anyone who was brought up/raised in a religious environment (especially a Judeo-Christian one), it's kind of like going to church on Sunday's compared to "practicing at home" throughout the week. The power of the music, sermon, and positive energy in the room really does make an enormous difference compared to a week of solitary practice.

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I see you're getting your degree in art of the obvious~myself
Without music life would be a mistake~ Friedrich Nietzsche
Immorality: The morality of those who are having a better time~ H.L. Mencken
When nature has work to be done, she creates a genius to do it~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves~ Galileo

#6 Aria

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 01:19 PM

I think solitary work can be great, and it can be really frustrating.

I've always practiced alone, besides few times. A teenage boyfriend, who was also a crazy stalker. If I think back to what we learned together, and the experiences we had, it was great. But it al went shit, and the shit came harder because we were tied at a deeper level. It meant going through the break up magically too. That put me entirely off the path of working with others for a bit.

In my twenties, I met a woman who is still a fellow witch, with whom I practiced magic and celebrated moons with quite often. That was a very beautiful experience, that thaught me a lot of the things I know. Practice with her was free, spontaneous and very powerful.

What's really interesting is that I'm the incredibly outgoing one, but when it comes to the large Reiki healing circles/groups- it didn't vibe with me. He feels the energy in those sessions strongly. I do not. We're both aware that the main reason for that is of course myself. I'm just not open to it.



All the group rituals to witch I've been were cold performances, besides some of the voudon once in West Africa. The ones I've been in Europe were mostly Wiccan or inter-faith. I have rarely felt anything, and at times surely was me. But at times surely it was not. At one session, we were basically being the public of a known high priestess dancing around 'celtic' dance moves. The only thing that could be felt there was her ego, and I can't imagine how it must be in her coven. Still, some people there were AMAZED. I'm not saying that's your case, as my experience with Reiki is close to none, but I find sometimes it's just a general need to 'feel' something. That's human, it happens. Have you ever seen pentacostals speaking in tongues? Sometimes people get weird, one always has to look out for this, and trust his guts.

Said that, I would love to join a group or to find like-minded people to practice magic with. I have questions regarding the size of the group, as I've never really worked magic with more than one person and can't see myself working with more than three or four people. Still, I long for learning so much that I'd be willing to push that boundary.
The greatest thing I got from working with other people, was knowledge. Somehow, it unlocked in me things that I hadn't even thought of. That was also the time when I had my first 'spiritual' (I called it 'astral' at the time) experience with the person I was walking with. Before that, I was convinced that everyone who claimed to meet another person in spirit was a fraud.

The thing that I'd like the most would be to have a close group of friends to meet weekly or every other week and hold an informal circle, with mutual readings, spirit and magic work if necessary. But also the occasional ritual, technique or herb/oil experiment. That's been on my wishlist for a while :smile:

(Sorry, edited a bit cause I missed a major point I wanted to make !)

Edited by Aria, 03 September 2015 - 01:26 PM.

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#7 demetria

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Posted 13 September 2015 - 01:31 AM

Solitary work can be very powerful on an individual level - when you dont have distractions sometimes you can go very deep. Group work has more overall energy and power in my experience - especially if the ceremony is led well and people work together. A lot of group work I do is also safer in groups because if you are busy dealing with one thing you have someone else to watch your back. If I host healing ceremony for someone partners/assistants become mandatory if the group goes above a certain size. For other ceremonies like making offerings ect a group can add huge amounts of power.


Well said! I've found this to be very true.

Also, one of the benefits I've found in coven/group settings is that working with other people's energy/power has made me more aware of my own, which of course makes it easier to raise and focus. And like Aria said, it can unlock things that you'd never find alone.

That being said, I've been solitary for a while now and it works for me! I suspect that the more people you add to a magical working, the more you'll have to compromise to really make things click. While I don't mind compromising occasionally, I just find solitary work easier. ;) If you found a working partner who was on the same page, I guess that would be rather effective. Even though I have friends and family who are wonderful witches, I've not (yet?) found someone who works like I do.

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#8 Belwenda

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Posted 18 September 2015 - 03:55 PM

Michele's coments are spot on ( as usual).
IDK about covens. I tend personally to ascribe to the Groucho Marx quote about not wanting to be a part of any club that would have him as a member, however I have done specific work; over a longish period of time( 6-8 months), with a focused group of gals, for a clearly defined goal and the spells manifested nicely for all. There is so much power in numbers!

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#9 bewitchingredhead

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Posted 19 September 2015 - 07:22 AM

I think solitary work can be great, and it can be really frustrating.

I've always practiced alone, besides few times. A teenage boyfriend, who was also a crazy stalker. If I think back to what we learned together, and the experiences we had, it was great. But it al went shit, and the shit came harder because we were tied at a deeper level. It meant going through the break up magically too. That put me entirely off the path of working with others for a bit.

In my twenties, I met a woman who is still a fellow witch, with whom I practiced magic and celebrated moons with quite often. That was a very beautiful experience, that thaught me a lot of the things I know. Practice with her was free, spontaneous and very powerful.



All the group rituals to witch I've been were cold performances, besides some of the voudon once in West Africa. The ones I've been in Europe were mostly Wiccan or inter-faith. I have rarely felt anything, and at times surely was me. But at times surely it was not. At one session, we were basically being the public of a known high priestess dancing around 'celtic' dance moves. The only thing that could be felt there was her ego, and I can't imagine how it must be in her coven. Still, some people there were AMAZED. I'm not saying that's your case, as my experience with Reiki is close to none, but I find sometimes it's just a general need to 'feel' something. That's human, it happens. Have you ever seen pentacostals speaking in tongues? Sometimes people get weird, one always has to look out for this, and trust his guts.

Said that, I would love to join a group or to find like-minded people to practice magic with. I have questions regarding the size of the group, as I've never really worked magic with more than one person and can't see myself working with more than three or four people. Still, I long for learning so much that I'd be willing to push that boundary.
The greatest thing I got from working with other people, was knowledge. Somehow, it unlocked in me things that I hadn't even thought of. That was also the time when I had my first 'spiritual' (I called it 'astral' at the time) experience with the person I was walking with. Before that, I was convinced that everyone who claimed to meet another person in spirit was a fraud.

The thing that I'd like the most would be to have a close group of friends to meet weekly or every other week and hold an informal circle, with mutual readings, spirit and magic work if necessary. But also the occasional ritual, technique or herb/oil experiment. That's been on my wishlist for a while :smile:

(Sorry, edited a bit cause I missed a major point I wanted to make !)


Oh god yes.... :rofl: My mother's family was Pentecostal. I'd seriously be looking around the room going, what.the.fuck.?!
Thank god the compromise growing up was Baptist! :laugh:

You've basically described exactly how I feel about it. Close friends, informal, readings, some magic, etc. Lord knows nothing like an actual coven. No offense with regards to them or anything, but that starts to tread down the dogmatic path and I have NO desire to do that.

Thank you so much for your input Aria- now I don't feel too bad about not "feeling" the same things as others, etc.

Michele's coments are spot on ( as usual).
IDK about covens. I tend personally to ascribe to the Groucho Marx quote about not wanting to be a part of any club that would have him as a member, however I have done specific work; over a longish period of time( 6-8 months), with a focused group of gals, for a clearly defined goal and the spells manifested nicely for all. There is so much power in numbers!


Yep this is basically what I'm kind of itching to do next. Basically what I posted above to Aria's reply.

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I see you're getting your degree in art of the obvious~myself
Without music life would be a mistake~ Friedrich Nietzsche
Immorality: The morality of those who are having a better time~ H.L. Mencken
When nature has work to be done, she creates a genius to do it~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves~ Galileo





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