This past weekend, I did some Magick with a couple of friends.
It felt just like “the old days” of my Magick–before running a Coven, planning a Sabbat, advertising a public event on FB, dealing with park permits and gawkers, set-up and clean-up and all of the stuff necessary to do public Witchcraft. It was just me and two of my oldest, best friends, and a sweet lab-mix named Riley. We had a special intention. We each contributed some herbs, candles, and bought a jar of honey. We bundled up. We were doing our rite on the beach and the Oregon coast is cold in early March. And off we went to do our Magick.
How quickly I remembered that sometimes the simplest acts of Witchcraft can be a little complicated!
In an age of Instagram Witches, with perfect altars and gorgeous images, I’d forgotten how messy Witchcraft can be. I also forgot how it can be uncomfortable and definitely inconvenient at times. Maybe it should be. Maybe Witchcraft isn’t supposed to be easy.
I’ve been traveling a lot. One friend has been sick for weeks and the other left a sick kid at home. We all live over an hour from the coast. It was an inconvenient time to do Magick on the beach, but we felt our spell called for it.
Pushing through the inconvenience strengthened our Magick.
If Magick is too easy, it doesn’t give it the spell the power it needs.
The beach was cold and dark. It was a new moon. We stuck a stick in the sand to mark our way back. We made an offering to the ocean and immediately got soaked from our waists down. My feet throbbed from the icy water. Shivering, we stumbled to a piece of drift log and struggled to light the charcoal in the wind. We focused and made it happen, even though the wind, temperatures, and cold, wet pants made it a very uncomfortable experience.
But pushing through discomfort strengthened our Magick, too.Finally, we opened the jar of honey and turned it into our spell vehicle. We each added a few strands of hair to the honey, along with our chosen herbs. It should be lovely, right? A little piece of each of us tucked into a glass jar of real, local honey. A perfect fit for Instagram!
It wasn’t. It was gross.
The hair balled up on top of the honey and it just looked repulsive. We shoved it in the jar and got honey (and because we were on the beach, sand…) all over our hands and wet pants. It was all pretty gross. It was no well-lit, smoking cauldron surrounded by crystals on a pristine altar. It was Witchcraft–messy and sticky. And it was glorious.
Embracing that which is a little gross was also a boon to our Magick.
Sometimes, it’s inconvenient. Spirits need us to go somewhere or do something outside of our routes and routines.
Other times, it’s uncomfortable. If we want the powers of nature, we need to be outside. Nature is not always comfortable. In fact, it’s usually not.
Sometimes, it’s even a little gross. Ingredients may not be pristine. Sometimes they goopy, smelly, sticky, or just look really funky.
Witchcraft isn’t always pretty.
And that’s what makes is great.