As the Pagan year slowly winds down, I again find myself drawing inward.
This year had been a time of action and growth for me, both inwardly and outwardly.
I achieved the big goal I had set myself at Yule, losing weight, as well as most of the others.
One of my goals was to build a stronger connection with my Matron Goddess, and in this I have found great success.
Over the year, I have really grown into my identity as a witch.
My magical power has strengthened, my knowledge has increased alongside my understanding.
I have finally developed a solid practice that is uniquely mine.
Reading back through my journals over the past year, my progress has been astounding.
The above photos are a ‘then and now’ collage of my personal altar, my shrine to my Matron, Hecate.
The bottom picture is my first altar, taken at Yule, not long after I began to walk this path.
The top picture is my altar as it is now.
Comparing these two pictures is an indicator of how far I have come.
I can see a greater understanding of my Goddess, as well as myself.
I know now where I am heading, what I wish to achieve in my spiritual growth.
Back in that first picture, I was only casting about, floundering about, at times.
It goes to show, that we must all begin somewhere.
It takes a lot of time, practice and trying things on, to finally reach that moment of clarity.
It took me years until I finally reached the point where I knew where I was heading, what I was doing.
I remember getting confused with all the conflicting information, practising ways that rang hollow to me.
I remember reading invocations from books, word for word, struggling to read by candlelight, and wondering what all the fuss was about.
I certainly wasn’t feeling the energy and magic the books described.
It wasn’t until I gained the confidence to go it alone, to do things my way, to write my own invocations in a way that was true to me, that I began to understand, to truly feel, that magic.
Now that I stand several years down the road from that first picture, I can see that the false starts were necessary.
That the books and traditions that tell you only their way works, only this specific incantation must be read at this specific time, that a circle must only ever be cast clockwise, were wrong.
The only thing that was wrong, was following word for word instructions.
Recipes and instructions work wonderfully for baking a cake, but fall flat when it comes to magick and spiritual growth.
It was only when I had the courage, and wisdom, to throw away the Wicca 101 guides, that I really began to make progress and truly find my way.
Looking back and evaluating my progress, I can only imagine what the future holds.
When I stand, many moons from now, looking back at this time, how much more wisdom will I hold?
During a meditation last night, I was shown a vision of myself as an old woman.
The words, “Work today for the woman you hope to be in the future”.
The only question, who do I really want that woman to be?
But I know the answer to that question, I only need to find the ways to work towards her.