Witchcraft is a river where the true medicine of Hekate abides. Under this is a deeper river that is Hekate herself. She is the river and the unseen river, and both flow within the veins of all of us called to the teachings of the Witch Mother, whose gifts are of magick, medicine and mystery. Dive into this river through these practices to deepen your connection to Hekate and strengthen your witchcraft.
We are called back to the crossroads where we stand on the bank of this river. It is the road that is a river, and a river which is a road. We see this river-road with our third eye. We know it in our souls. It is the looping road-river that always leads us back to our spiritual home. Our souls long to dive deep into this river, but our shadows may tell us that the water is too deep. It is not. The Witch Mother’s magick and medicine flows through us. We are strong swimmers.
Learning To Swim In The Sacred River Of The Goddess
While we may be infused with the wisdom on how to navigate this unseen river, learning ways to navigate is most beneficial. Venturing into the deeper self and the world of spirits requires bravery, practice and trust.
One of the most common questions that I’m asked is about how to go deeper into a relationship with Hekate. While spending time in deep connection through meditation, trance and other forms of ecstatic witchcraft are all ways to achieve this, there are practices that don’t require such intense work. Few of us have time to dedicate hours each day to practicing spiritual witchcraft. There are ways to dive deep without abandoning your responsibilities.
These practice are based on my own learnings and the lessons that emerge from the data I’ve collected from my students and readers who share their experiences with me.
Listen and pay attention: Hekate is already sending you signs.
Time and time again, I’ve seen in my own life and that of other witches, the ways in which we ignore the messages and meanings we are already receiving because we are so wrapped up in trying to get Hekate’s attention. At times, this means standing at the shores of the unseen river to observe what is already happening. At others, we’re already in deep but must tread water so that in our stillness we can allow her medicine to be digested.
Swimming aimlessly isn’t going to get us anywhere. Those signs of hers are our waymarkers, guiding us deeper and further into her magick and medicine. These signs are her medicine, they are the signs we follow to deepen our connection to her and strengthen our witchcraft.
The signs Hekate sends often (but not always) are symbols of her sacred talismans including fire, keys and wheels. She also sends animal messengers and members of her horde as our allies and guides. They will come to you during meditation, trance and in the dream world. You may find them in unexpected places. Unusual occurrences are another sign.
It’s natural to worry about “getting it right.”
Swimming in the unseen river can seem, rightfully so, incredibly risky. We are justified in worrying about making sure we follow the rules to avoid harmful consequences. However, our journey is as unique as the river in which we swim. Although there are some general practices, such as meditation and spellcrafting, that can help us learn how to navigate our river in our own way, ultimately it is yours alone. Hekate, in my experience and that of hundreds of others, does not require rigid practices or impose strict dogma. How could we dive deep if we were bound by such things?
When you find yourself excessively worrying about “getting it right,” gently remind yourself that Hekate cares little for anything besides your sincerity.
Start small and simple: a few minutes of daily spiritual practice will deepen your connection to the sacred within and to Hekate.
We become more skilled at spiritual deep diving by building our connection in small ways everyday. While we sometimes end up plunged in very deep through our spiritual experiences, the true depths are reached by regular practice. This is where we learn to become expert swimmers in the unseen river. In addition, integration after intense spiritual work necessitates enduring daily practice. If we are jumping in deep and then climbing back out to where we dove it, we aren’t getting anywhere.
Daily practice should be sustainable. If you have ten minutes a day while you are in the shower, then make this your sacred time. Connect to the power of the deeper river while the water pours over your body. Cleanse yourself with soaps and shampoos full of the plants of Hekate’s Garden such as lavender and rose.
My favorite daily practice is spending a few moments in the predawn darkness aligning my sacredness with that of the Witch Mother.
Take small strokes of spiritual bravery. Deprogramming takes time.
There is a natural urgency when we are called to the unseen river. How we long to dive right in, even when we are are afraid. Conversely, we are also often paralyzed by the years of spiritual programming. The invalidation, pain and restriction can bind us from even taking one stroke. Hekate passes us the key to unlock ourselves, but we are often quite weak from being so tightly bound. Take the time to strengthen your spiritual swimming skills through small strokes. Do a guided meditation, make a playlist that is evocative of Hekate, or write a poem.
There’s a guided meditation within this podcast that will definitely deepen your connection to the river.
Listen to others, but always follow what feels right to you.
Hekate’s signs are always true, and it is our work to interpret them. When we have visions, dreams and receive other knowings, it is helpful to talk to others as we process their meaning. I’m often asked for advice about what such experiences mean. While I can discuss the symbolism and archetypal meaning of objects and experiences, I may not know the personal details that give significance to them.
When something unusual or vivid happens, take the time to ask yourself what the importance is to you and do your research. There’s no need to rush this process; these signs will wait until you are ready to receive their wisdom.
Hekate and witchcraft aren’t going anywhere.
Building upon the last point is the importance of knowing that the natural urgency to dive deep is balanced with the enduring nature of the unseen river. This river gave birth to the universe. River time is not chronological, it bends and twists like any river does. It becomes the wheel that is the crossroads where we are offered the key.Pacing yourself improves your connection to Hekate because it allows you the time required for contemplation of your unique river.
You don’t need anything to deepen your connection to Hekate and strengthen your witchcraft, although beautiful and powerful objects are wonderful.
Our altars are beautiful portals connecting us to the unseen river that we experience as Hekate. However, we can awaken the sacred within and express our affection for our Witch Mother without spending one cent. Create altars out of objects you already own that have great meaning to you, from jewelry to curios.
We become stronger swimmers by expressing our creativity in whatever form it takes. That expression is truly sacred. The river creates life, allow yours to flow out through your hands and mouth.
Have a personal power talisman.
Use your sacred creativity to create a personal power talisman that is your tether both to yourself and the unseen river. It can be a kroki, a type of ancient sacred bracelet, or a stone crafted into an amulet. An image of Hekate adorned with symbols and infused with botanicals makes a beautiful connective talisman.
Perform sacred rites: go for a meditative walk, light a candle, take a ritual bath.
A ritual is any series of behaviors that allow us to enter into the unseen river. A beautiful ceremony honoring Hekate is only one way to perform a sacred rite. Meditation doesn’t require sitting with an empty mind waiting for her to fill it up with her river. Go for a meditative walk to reconnect to the splendor of Hekate’s Garden.
Ritual bathing is one of my favorite ways of diving deep into her unseen river. I do one on each Noumenia.
Choose crystals, herbs, bath products that speak of your sacred truth. Light a few candles, turn on an evocative playlist. Then sink into the river, allowing your connection to deepen.
Stay in your magic: do more of what speaks truth to you.
The most damaging lie we’ve been told is that we are not sacred. Perhaps we’ve even been tricked into believe that the things that are magical to us aren’t not valuable, or that our interests are wastes of time. How damaging that is to our river-wings on which we swim deeper. To restore yours, explore the activities, belongings and practices that speak of magic to you. My sister and I recently had a wonderful conversation about how our cosmetics and makeup are magical because they allow us to express our beauty through creativity, while also protecting us when needed. Whatever is your magic, find ways to stay in it.
Practice magick: use your powerful mind to cast spells.
Magick is different than magic. Magick is the intentional use of our minds in correspondence with spirits, plants, stones and other objects to craft spells. Magic is the experience of flow; the state of being when our inner chatter is silenced by our activities or beloved possessions. This is the flow of the unseen river.
Casting spells can be so intimidating. In my courses, many students experience great resistance as they begin to craft The Spell of the Seven Flames. This is a spell that positions their own will as the most powerful part. Our clever, creative and curious witches’ mind can be our greatest ally in any spell. Create your own candle magick spell by setting an intention, directing your words into the flame (by speaking or burning), and then envisioning the spell taking form in the smoke.
Witches create. We shape the river into our spell. It flows from us towards our destination. Focus on this mantra and your witchcraft will become invincible.
Abundance is the witches’ right. Claim the bounty of the river.
Somewhere along our journey, many of us picked up the idea that we don’t deserve abundance. Certainly, this is entwined with the trickery of those whose desire is to deny our power, and, sometimes, even rob us of our very existence. Yet another lie the unseen river washes away. Spend time contemplating your wildest dream. That’s where your river is going. How will you swim towards it?
Your voice is the song of the unseen river.
Use your thoughts and words to speak your truth to Hekate and in your spells.
There is much wisdom in the principle of keeping silent when necessary, but there is equally truth in the power of our voices. Sing your spells to life as Circe did. Her unique voice was ridiculed, but yet it became the sound that brought fear to the hearts of those who would harm her. There’s no need to sing at the top of your lungs, allow your thoughts to do the talking if you aren’t in a position to externalize. Hekate hears us always.
Your body is the sacred vessel of the unseen river.
Dance, walk, do yoga, wear makeup and great outfits. Whatever is your embodied expression of the sacred is what matters. Every time I wrap a scarf around my shoulders, I feel connected to something ancient. Sacred movements of ecstatic rituals allow us to swim deeper. Honor yourself and your goddess through your physical being. Our denial of corporeal pleasures is a symptom of being under the illusion of separation.
Seek the flow of the Goddess: connect with the elements, sacred places, and the stars above. They all emanate from her sacred river.
All the practices I’ve discussed serve to awaken the sacred river within you. This is the soul-flow that fuels our ability to dive deep into our connection to Hekate and to summon the river for our spells. It is the flow of Hekate that imbues all of the creation, from the stars to the darkness. They are the river, as are we.
Read my deep dive into more practices, including rituals, sigils, spells, meditations and more, in this guide:
Watch Awakening The Mystai for more ways to deepen your connection to Hekate and strengthen your witchcraft.