You know that moment when you instantly click with someone? I think this happens because some part of us says “you have a heart like mine.” In my case, it’s a black witch’s heart full of hope, determination and more than a little rebelliousness. My heart’s driven by curiosity and the need for wild places. Black is it’s color because it’s protective, mysterious, and great at hiding a few extra pounds. This old heart of mine’s been hurt a thousand times but keeps on healing. Black is good for that since it hides all sorts of stains.
Instantaneous Intense Connections
When I meet someone and experience that “click” of recognition, different reactions can occur. There are times when that instant connection burns out quickly or goes up in flames. I do think, however, that the instantaneous intense connection we feel in this situation can be a sign of past life thing catching up with us in the present.
Recognizing Another’s Soul Spark
Somewhere along the crooked path of my life, I picked up the idea that if we soften our gaze we can see a small light over the left shoulder of a person with whom we have that sort of connection. It’s like a soul-beacon signaling to us. All souls have this beacon, but ours only recognizes another’s when it’s time to connect, like having unfinished past life business or the opportunity to start a relationship with a new soul mate. While this connection can occur with people very different from us, there are times when we meet some and our soul says, “oh, you have a heart like mine.”
I’m talking about that moment when our soul makes the decision that another person has a similar heart. The very thing that gives them life is akin to that which fuels my soul (heart). I’m using “heart” the way we often think of the metaphorical symbol of describing a person’s core characteristics and beliefs. Also the things they hold dear and their very essence.
The Witch’s Heart
Getting back to my idea about this little “soul spark” over our left shoulders, if I have such a thing mine would be a black heart with a pentacle in the middle. I thought that it would be easy to find an image with a black heart in it and that there would be lots written about a witch’s heart. There isn’t much, with the exception of the fantastic book written by Christopher Penczak (here’s a good review.) While this book is great, it’s not about the sort of heart-to-heart connection when we have that moment when we meet someone and our soul is reflected back at us because they have a heart like ours.
Emoticons as Soul Mate Identifiers?
While this can happen in person, we can make this connection in other ways, like online or through reading. I’ve noticed that in the land of social media, many people that I believe would understand a heart like mine use the black heart emoticon as an indication of witchy love and support. No one ever said to me, and I’d bet none of them, “use the black heart emoticon as a reflection of who you are.” Somehow we just started doing it. I think it’s because we want to put our black witch hearts out there like that soul-spark over our left shoulder. The use of this black heart emoticon was one factor that motivated me to explore the idea of the witch’s heart. The other was my newly renewed adoration of the venerable Doreen Valiente. Other colleagues here at Patheos Pagan have written about her, including this excellent guide.
The Heart of Modern WitchcraftMy witch’s heart has been aching for the sort of witchcraft that I used to do in the good old days, so my mind ended up thinking about the Mother of Modern Witchcraft. As I was reading her biography, (read this one and not the other one) I was struck by the thought that, while the book was fascinating, the author hardly mentions her heart. It’s left for the reader to evaluate her character, her passions and what fueled her soul. Certainly witchcraft did. But what made her so interested? What drove her curiosity? I want to talk about those things.
She was a witch when it was illegal (more or less) in Britain. It was necessary for her to go on a witch hunt to find information, including Gerald Gardner and others. She didn’t drive. There was no internet nor were there any Doreen Valiente books to read. It’s safe to say that her heart was very determined. She also kicked down a lot of doors, from dealing with troublesome men to speaking out about witchcraft. She had a rebel’s heart that was fueled by an insatiable thirst for knowledge. I think we should start calling her “The Heart of Modern Witchcraft.”Although decades and approach to witchcraft separate us, I like to believe that she would understand a heart like mine.
“Let my worship be within the heart that rejoices for behold all acts of love and pleasure are my rituals.
And therefore let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honor and humility, mirth and reverence within you.” From Charge of the Goddess by Doreen Valiente
The Origins of the “Witch’s Heart”
Like me, she felt that witchcraft was for healing. I decided to focus on the witch’s heart for the Full Moon circle that I host on Keeping Her Keys because when we cast a spell we are manifesting our “heart’s desire.” The idea of using the heart symbol in witchcraft extends beyond the black heart emoticon to it’s use in love magick. The history of the heart symbol as we know it reveals that it began, most appropriately, as a talisman known as “the witch’s heart” during the Middle Ages. This charm was much like our soul-spark that helps us identify someone with whom we share a similar heart.
Do You Have a Heart Like Mine?
That idea I had about finding a cool image for this blog? I couldn’t find anything I liked, so I headed to the workshop. This heart made out of heavy artist board is the result. I frayed the outside because my heart is definitely a little rough around the edges. If this makes sense to you, then maybe you have a heart like mine.