A little practical magic…cast your spells now while the moon is waxing


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I’m not a witch, but I’m friends with one.  I was pretty surprised when she told me.   She’s a conventional person, a school teacher, but she also happens to be a witch.  If you met her, you would never suspect this.

I’m not sure exactly what a witch is, but I know what she’s not: she’s not a devil-worshipper, and she doesn’t cast spells against people.  I don’t think she believes in magic per se.  She meets up regularly with other people who believe what she does, just as other people go to church.  There is pagan ceremony and ritual involved but most of it seems to revolve around celebrating natural cycles, such as the vernal and autumnal equinoxes (I haven’t been but she has told me about them).  She also has a rather uncanny gift with Tarot cards.

Anyway, I’m a huge skeptic about almost anything I cannot actually observe, but I think all positive and life-affirming rituals are interesting.  She gifted me with a few books of magic spells and a kit.  One night, about four years ago, I did a spell, following the instructions in the book.  Darned if it didn’t work! Or at least, the outcome was positive.  Probably just a coincidence.  Anyway, she was aghast when I told her.  “Mary!”  She said, “You’re not ready to do cast spells!  That could have gone all wrong!” “Then why didn’t you tell me that before you gave me the kit?” I asked.  Looking back, I laugh that two grown people actually had this discussion 🙂

I don’t like superstitions, but if you think of it as just focusing or channeling a little positive energy toward a positive goal — kind of like meditation with the condiments of a few simple rituals — and you do it with a sense of humor, I don’t see any harm in it.

Candle Magic

We all do candle magic when we put birthday candles on a cake and make a wish.  It’s as simple and harmless as that.

My friend told me that candles of certain colors are burned for different needs.  A black candle, for example, she says will remove negativity.  I bought a beautiful, wonderful smelling black candle in Old Town.  Just the ritual of lighting it and inhaling that beautiful perfume is often enough to snap me out of a funk.

Often now, if I want to get in touch with my creative side or remove a little writer’s block, I light a candle and just pause for a moment.  I really find that this harmless bit of “magic” works for me.

Burning Sage

Another simple trick is to cleanse a room of bad vibes by burning sage.  Believe it or not, they sell these sage bundles at Whole Foods, just for this purpose.  Native Americans have been doing this for who knows how long.  Anyway, she came over and burned some sage in the room of an ex.  I told her it just seemed like that room always smelled like him (in a bad way).  Darned if that room didn’t smell a lot better after she burned the sage, and of course, I did feel like we removed all of his nastiness and bad humor.  A simple ritual, but it made me feel a lot better.

Salt Spells

So you know about the superstition when you throw salt over your left shoulder to undo the bad luck of spilling salt.  Salt is also supposed to have magical properties.  You can rinse something in salt water to purify it of negative energy, or get it ready for a spell — coins and keys are rinsed in this way.  Or you can sprinkle some salt in the corners to purify a room (for example, if you had an argument in that room, or a bad dream), or around your house and walk ways  to protect yourself from toxic people.  Throw a handful out the door after a person leaves so they can’t come back and bother you.  I’m laughing as I write this as I imagine some of you sprinkling salt in the corners of your cubicles and offices!  But, seriously, try it.  It feels really empowering, just this simple act.  It’s as if you are committing to yourself that you’re not going to let people mess with you.

Divination Spells

There are many divination spells — that is, spells that foretell the outcome, or provide a yes or no answer to a posed question.  I’m not a big fan of divination spells, because I think there is such a thing as self-fulfilling prophecy, and I think we should all feel in control of our fates, to the extent possible.  The apple and nut divination spells around Halloween are harmless enough.  But I’m amused by readings and good spells.

Some Spells to Try

So, if you’re ready to embrace your inner enchantress, now is the perfect time to try.  According to the Gypsies, (who have been casting spells for centuries), when the moon is waxing until the moon becomes full is the best time to have your spells turn out well. The Gypsies, also known as Romanies, believe that our bodies are affected by the phases of the moon, and that psychic energy is highest at this time.

There are a number of spells in Gillian Kemp’s book, The Good Spell Book.  Here are a couple of spells you can cast tonight and through Friday

For money: light a green candle.  Let it burn for five minutes, then snuff it out.  Rub your hands in the smoke and imagine money coming to you.

To find your lucky word: light a white candle, take a dictionary, and face south.  Close your eyes and turn the book around several times.  Keeping your eyes closed, fan the pages until you feel ready to stop.  Let your finger explore the page until you feel ready to stop.  The word under your finger is your magic word.  Whenever you need a boost of luck or energy, say this magic word.  Snuff out the candle.

For love: on Friday night (dedicated to Venus, Goddess of Love) take a new, never used pink candle.  With a pen in your favorite color and white piece of paper, clear your mind of distractions and write your name and your loved one’s name.  Draw a circle around both names. Close your eyes and visualize the two of you, happy together.  Then watch over your candle for a short while. Snuff it out.


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  1. #1 by kayla on October 19, 2011 - 3:09 pm

    how do you know when the moon is waxing I get all that confused? do they all have to be cast at night?

    • #2 by Mary Fletcher Jones on October 19, 2011 - 3:39 pm

      The moon is “waxing” between the new moon and the full moon. When it’s getting bigger — from crescent to half moon to almost full. The moon is “waning” after the full moon when it seems to get smaller and smaller. So, you just go to a lunar calendar to find out when the new moon is and the full moon is, and the dates in between are when the moon is in its waxing phase. There are lots of them online: here’s one — http://kalender-365.de/lunar-calendar.php The moon will be waxing in October from the 27 through November 8. Now, I’m not a witch 🙂 so i don’t know if the spells have to be cast at night but it does feel more fun to do it night. Remember to cast spells during the waxing moon when you want things to increase: more money, longer hair, more love, etc.

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