As I worked in my kitchen, saving chicken meat from leftover bones after dinner, Chicken Spirit decided to give me an interesting experience. Holding a cleaned up piece of wing bone in my hand, I received a strong sense of “keep this.” Surprising but not unwelcome. So, after holding the small bone a moment longer I set it aside.
However, as I continued my work the same thing happened with other bones —keep this one, not that one. Following this prompting, I continued setting aside bones, thanking the Earth Deity and Chicken Spirit for guiding me in the best bones to keep for future spellcraft. Because it soon became clear what was guiding my fingers in this activity.
Keeping the Bones
In my post, Green Earth Witch: Honoring Earth Mother In Nature-Based Witchcraft, I mention that I do not often work with animal spirits. This is true. However, that does not mean I never do.
When the need arises I work with animal spirits willing to ally with me. Also, I am not averse to bone or blood (my own) magick if the situation warrants. My natural inclination just happens to be “green earth” things: herbs, plants, trees, stones, soil, water, etc.
So, working with an animal spirit is not a big deal. What I found interesting is how this interaction came unbidden. As a gift, if you will. It reminded me of the conversation we had not long ago with Gwion Raven, author of The Magic of Food, for the podcast about honoring where our food comes from.
Working With Chicken Bones
The first time I worked with Chicken Spirit happened during a class on how to make a Gris-Gris (in this case, a New Orleans Voodoo protection amulet) taught by our friend, Witchdoctor Utu. He provided the cleaned bones and other materials, explaining how to use the Gris-Gris in our home. And we called Chicken Spirit in the bones, to give thanks and ask for its empowering energy.
Not long after I got home, I decided it might be a good idea to have a small supply of chicken bones in my apothecary. Why not? Always good to be prepared. So, I got us a rotisserie chicken for dinner and went through the process afterward of boiling the bones, cleaning them, bleaching them, and storing them for future use. I made sure to be respectful, intentional.
What I experienced in this cleaning and setting aside of the chicken bones was very different. Chicken Spirit called to me, chose to ally with me, directed me on what will go into my Bone Throwing set, what will be used for spellcraft. It became a deeply spiritual experience, finding the correct bones, setting them aside with a grateful heart for this chicken that fed my family, and will now assist in my witchcraft. It was very humbling.
Intuition Is Key As A Green Earth Witch
As a Green Earth Witch, I have learned that following my intuition is very important. While it is helpful to learn from structured witchcraft or spiritual traditions (and my background is eclectic because I have walked a number of paths with a variety of teachers), some things will resonate while others do not.
In my solitary practice, I have the option to go with what feels right for me. And I encourage others who are interested in learning about Green Earth Witchcraft as a solitary practice to do the same thing. If I mention something that doesn’t work for you then no worries. Find a workaround that suits you best.
So, if you want to be a Solitary Green Earth Witch as I am defining the path but feel squiffy about working with animal bones from time to time, no worries. What you do in solitary practice is up to you. If you choose to join the (now) future coven, then just be aware that working with animal spirits through bone remains an option.
But let me be clear: No animals will ever be intentionally harmed in Green Earth Witchcraft.
Green Earth Witchcraft News
First, thank you so much to those of you who responded with such kindness to my initial post about being a Green Earth Witch, and expressing interest in the information I’m creating, supporting the idea of a book, the creation of an online coven. I’m so honored that what I’ve written resonates with you.
So, I will continue to write about this path as I go to work on creating all of the above. One of the first things I want to share is that I want the coven to be inclusive, therefore I am going to be adopting gender-neutral terms for use in the coven in addressing the Earth Deity and participants.
I gave serious consideration to if what I’m creating is a goddess exclusive path. And while in my solitary practice “Earth Mother” is how I understand the deity of Green Earth Witchcraft (and everyone is free to determine what works in private practice) when it comes to public references I want all people to feel welcome: cis, trans, non-binary, queer, straight, et al. Therefore, gender-neutral terms seems the best option.
My family and I have spent nearly three years encouraging tradition, group, and coven leaders to find ways to be more inclusive. If I’m going to create the Green Earth Witchcraft Online Coven, then I need to “walk the talk.”
It will take a bit to get things going but I will continue to post articles here about the journey. Blessings of the Earth Deity to you all.