African Violet: Burned for protection and to promote spirituality within the home.
Allspice: Burned to attract both good luck and money.
Aloes: Burned to attract good fortune, love, spiritual vibrations and strength.
Althea: Burned for protection and to stimulate the psychic powers.
Anise seeds: Burned as a meditation incense.
Basil: Burned to exorcise and protect against evil entities and to attract fidelity, love, good luck, sympathy, and wealth.
Bay: Burned to facilitate the psychic powers, and to induce prophetic dream visions.
Bayberry: Burned mainly to attract money.
Benzoin: Burned for purification and to attract prosperity.
Bistort: Burned with Frankincense to aid divination.
Bracken: Burned in outdoor fires to magickally produce rain.
Cedar: Burned for purification, to stimulate or strengthen the psychic powers, attract love, prevent nightmares.
Cinnamon: Burned for protection and to attract money, stimulate and strengthen the psychic powers and to aid in healing.
Citron: Burned in rituals to aid healing and also to strengthen psychic powers.
Clove: Burned to dispel negativity, purify sacred and magickal spaces, attract money, and stop or prevent the spread of gossip.
Coconut: Burned for protection.
Copal: Burned for purification and to attract love.
Damiana: Burned to facilitate psychic visions.
Dittany of Crete: Burned to conjure spirits and to aid in astral projection
Dragon’s Blood: Burned to dispel negativity, exorcise evil supernatural entities, attract love, enhance psychic awareness, and restore male potency. Makes all other incenses stronger when added at the same time.
Elecampane: Burned to strengthen the clairvoyant powers and scrying abilities.
Fern: Burned in outdoor fires to magickally produce rain. Also used to exorcise evil supernatural entities
Frankincense: Burned to dispel negativity, purify magickal spaces, protect against evil, aid meditation, induce psychic visions, attract good luck, and honor Pagan deities.
Fumitory: Burned to exorcise demons, poltergeists and other evil entities.
Galangal: Burned to break the curses cast by sorcerers.
Ginseng Root: Burned to keep wicked spirits at bay, and for protection against all forms of evil.
Gotu Kola: Burned to aid meditation.
Heather: Burned to conjure beneficial spirits, and to produce rain.
Hibiscus Flowers: Burned to attract love.
Horehound: Burned as an offertory incense to the ancient Egyptian god Horus
Jasmine: burned to attract love and money, and also to induce dreams of a prophetic nature.
Juniper: Burned to stimulate or increase the psychic powers. and also to break the curses and hexes cast by evil sorcerers.
Lavender: Burned to induce rest and sleep, and to attract love
Lilac: Burned to stimulate or increase the psychic powers and to attract harmony into one’s life.
Mace: Burned to stimulate or increase the psychic powers.
Mastic: Burned to conjure beneficial spirits, stimulate or increase the psychic powers, and intensify sexual desires. The magickal powers of other incenses are greatly increased when a bit of mastic is added. Mesquite: The magickal powers of all healing incenses are greatly enhanced by mesquite.
Mint: Burned to increase sexual desire, exorcise evil supernatural entities, conjure beneficial spirits, and attract
Myrrh: Burned (most commonly with Frankincense) for purification, consecration, healing, exorcism, and banishing evil.
Nutmeg: Burned to aid meditation, stimulate or increase the psychic powers and attract prosperity.
Patchouli: Burned to attract money and love, and also to promote fertility.
Pine: Burned for purification and to banish negative energies, exorcise evil supernatural entities and attract money.
Poppy Seeds: Burned to promote female fertility, and to attract love, good luck, and money.
Rose: Burned to increase courage, induce prophetic dreams, and attract love. Rose incense is used in all forms of love enchantment and possesses the strongest love vibration of any magickal incense.
Rosemary: Burned to purify, aid in healing, prevent nightmares, preserve youthfulness, dispel depression, attract fairyfolk, and promote restful sleep and pleasant dreams.
Rue: Burned to help restore health.
You decide what you want to include. You can leave things from this list out if you don’t feel like including them. You can add other things that aren’t on this list if you feel like including them. It is your personal Book of Shadows — make it your own!
Title Page Include your name, contact information, and the dates you start and end that Book of Shadows. If you end up keeping different Books of Shadows for different subjects, then label the subject too.
Dedication Page Write down your spiritual commitment. Things like why you are practicing Witchcraft, what you hope to learn, how you hope to grow, that kind of thing. If you want to dedicate your book to a particular God, Goddess, or more than one, write that down and why. Include the date and whatever astrological information you know. Over time, you may find that you want to change your dedicattion. That’s cool. In that case, add a new dedication page and keep the old one — you will want a record of how you have changed and grown in your craft. Don’t be embarassed by old dedications — that’s a record of how you grew in the craft. Some Witches add a new dedicattion once a year, four times a year, or even at each Sabbat.
Invocation of the Goddess This is an invocation of your Goddess. You can have more than one Goddess (or not even have one yet). You can start by including the famous Charge of the Goddess from Leland’s Aradia or you can make up your own. Feel free to add additional invocations of the Goddess to various Goddesses as you discover them or make up your own.
Invocation of the God This is an invocation of your God (and this can be Jesus, if you are a Christian Witch). You can have more than one God (or not even have one yet). Feel free to add additional invocations of the God to various Gods as you discover them or make up your own.
Altar Diagrams You may include diagrams, drawings, even photographs, of altars that you plan or make. Include any notes that you feel are important.
Circle Write down how you call or cast your circle. Include any chants or poems you recite or make up. Include any notes about anything special you do. Save old versions. You may start with the version at casting a circle.
Rituals Keep notes on all the rituals you try. Write down what you did and how it turned out. You can also include rituals you are saving for later (so they are handy when it is time).
Lunar Keep notes on your Esbats (Full Moon and New Moon), as well as any other lunar rituals (dark moon, waxing moon, waning moon, quarter moons, etc.). You can also include notes for lunar things you might want to do in the future.
Drawing Down the Moon If you do a Drawing Down the Moon ritual on Full Moon, keep notes on what you did, any visions or inspirations, and how things turned out.
Sabbats Keep records of what you do for each of the eight Sabbats in the Wheel of the Year. You may also want to save ideas for upcoming Sabbats (rituals, recipes, crafts, decorations, incenses, potions, spells, etc.).
Holy Days If you celebrate any holy days other than the Esbats and Sabbats, you will probably want to keep records of those. And you may want to save information on holy days you learn about in case you ever want to celebrate them in the future.
Other Special Days Keep records of any other special days, including your own birthday, and the birthdays of friends and families, anniversaries, and any other days that are special to you.
Magickal Calendar If the sections on Esbats, Sabbats, Holy Days, lunar cycles and other special days becomes large enough, you may want to consider keeping a seperate Magickal Calendar book.
Poems These can be your own poems, poems you find inspiring, or any combination.
Songs These can be your own songs, songs you find inspiring, or any combination.
Dances These can be your own dances, dances you find inspiring, or any combination.
Chants These can be your own chants, chants you find inspiring, or any combination.
Prayers These can be your own prayers, prayers you find inspiring, or any combination.
Invocations These can be your own invocations, invocations you find inspiring, or any combination.
Wisdom You may include wisdom you receive from visions, from power animals, from spirit guides, from dreams, from friends, from rituals, from books, even from school or your parents.
Astrology Keep the astrological charts of yourself, your lovers, your friends, your family, and anyone else important to you. You can use Western astrology, Chinese astrology, Hindu astrology, or any other kind of astrology, or any combination that you prefer.
Tools Keep records on your magick tools, their purposes, connections to the elements, markings, etc.
Magickal Information This section is all of your magickal information. This includes spells, of course, but can also include tables of correspondences, potions, oils, brews, incense, ointments, inks, tinctures, herb baths, bath salts, ritual soaps, sachets, powders, gems, crystals, candles, talismans, sigils, charms, magickal alphabets, runes, elements, knots, divination, etc.
Recipes Some Witches keep their recipes in their magickal information section. Others have a separate section for recipes. It’s really a matter of personal preference.
Magickal Diary Some Witches keep their magickal diary at the back of their Book of Shadows. Some Witches keep their Magickal Diary in a seperate book. It is a matter of personal preference. Some Witches even keep a sepearte detailed Magickal Diary, but include duplicates or summaries of the most important notes in the appropriate pages of their Book of Shaodws. Your Magickal Diary records all the divination you do (astrology, Tarot, I Ching, Drawing Down the Moon, etc.), all the spells you perform (with the results), all of the rituals you perform, and anything else you do in your magickal life. You will also want to record dreams and visions. And you will want to keep notes on how you feel, how your life is going, what your plans and hopes and dreams are, and anything else that you feel is important about your life or your magick.
If you’re a practitioner of Green Witchcraft, you’re in the habit of using herbs. Here’s a list of ten herbs that everyone should have on hand for magical purposes. Think of it as a basic witch’s arsenal of helpful herbs - keep these in your magical cabinet, just in case the need arises.
For the ancients, the apple was considered a symbol of immortality. Interestingly, it’s also seen as a food for the dead, which is why Samhain is sometimes referred to as the Feast of Apples. In Celtic myth, an apple branch bearing grown fruit, flowers, and unopened bud was a magical key to the land of the Underworld. The apple is often found as a component in love magic, and the blossoms may be added to incenses and brews.
Basil is known far and wide as a culinary herb, but it also contains some interesting magical properties. In Mediterranean countries, it is strewn on floors to purify a home. It also can bring luck to people moving into a new residence - a gift of a potted basil plant guarantees good fortune. Magically, basil can be used in love magic and in love divination. Basil can also be used to guarantee fidelity — or detect the lack of it. Learn more about Basil.
Chamomile is known as an herb of purification and protection, and can be used in incenses for sleep and meditation. Sprinkle it around your home to ward against psychic or magical attack. If you’re a gambler, wash your hands in chamomile tea to ensure good luck at the gaming tables. In a number of folk magic traditions, particularly those of the American south, chamomile is known as a lucky flower — make a garland to wear around your hair to attract a lover, or carry some in your pocket for general good fortune.
The use of Lavender has been documented for thousands of years. Magically speaking, lavender is often associated with love spells, as well as for workings to bring calmness and peace. To bring love your way, carry lavender flowers in a sachet on your person, or hang stalks of it in your home. To get a good night’s sleep, with calming dreams, stuff a pillow with sprigs of lavender. It can also be used in a purifying bath or smudging ritual. Learn more about Lavender.
Mugwort is an herb that is found fairly regularly in many modern Pagan magical practices. From its use as an incense, for smudging, or in spellwork, mugwort is a highly versatile - and easy to grow - herb. In some magical traditions, mugwort is associated with divination and dreaming. To bring about prophecy and divinatory success, make an incense of mugwort to burn at your workspace, or use it in smudge sticks around the area in which you are performing divination rituals.
Note: Mugwort can be harmful to pregnant women.
Patchouli is a popular herb found in many modern Pagan rituals. Its exotic scent brings to mind far-off, magical places, and it’s often used in incense blends, potpourri, and ritual workings. Associated with love, wealth, and sexual power, patchouli can be used in a variety of magical workings. Place patchouli leaves in a sachet, and carry it in your pocket or wear around your neck. In some traditions of hoodoo and folk magic, a dollar sign is inscribed on a piece of paper using patchouli oil. The paper is then carried in your wallet, and this should draw money your way. There are some traditions of modern magic in which patchouli is valued for its repelling power.
Pennyroyal is well known as a magical herb. In some traditions it’s associated with money, while in others Pennyroyal is connected to strength and protection. In Hoodoo and some forms of American folk magic, Pennyroyal is carried to ward off the “evil eye.” For some protection magic, make a sachet stuffed with Pennyroyal and tuck it in your purse. In a few traditions, Pennyroyal is associated with money magic. If you own a business, place a sprig over the door to draw in customers and prosperity. Try making a bar of Money Soap to wash your hands with, or use Pennyroyal to brew up some Prosperity Oil.
Note: Pennyroyal can be harmful to pregnant women.
Rosemary was well known to ancient practitioners. It was an herb known for strengthening the memory and helping the brain, and was often cultivated in kitchen gardens. Roman priests used rosemary as incense in religious ceremonies, and many cultures considered it a herb to use as protection from evil spirits and witches. In England, it was burned in the homes of those who had died from illness, and placed on coffins before the grave was filled with dirt. For magical use, burn rosemary to rid a home of negative energy, or as an incense while you meditate. Hang bundles on your front door to keep harmful people, like burglars, from entering. Learn more about Rosemary.
Sage has long been burned to purify and cleanse a space. The ancients burned dried sprigs of sage in temples and during religious rituals. The Greeks and Romans wrote that the smoke imparted wisdom and mental acuity. In magic, carry sage leaves in your wallet or purse to promote financial gain. Burn leaves to increase wisdom or gain guidance from your spirit guide (be warned - burning sage does smell similar to marijuana, so keep that in mind if you think the neighbors might be inquisitive). Make a wish and write it on a sage leaf, and then hide it beneath your pillow — if you dream about your wish over the next three nights, your wish will come true. Learn more about Sage.
Yarrow was often called Woundwort or Knight’s Milfoil, thanks to its use in treatment of battle injuries. Scotland’s Highlanders use it to make a healing ointment, and in the Orkney Islands, yarrow is used to make a tea that “dispels melancholia.” Yarrow can be used in magical workings related to healing, love, and courage. Wear it on your person to boost your self-esteem and courage, or carry a bunch of dried yarrow in your hand to stop fear. A sprig hanging over the marriage bed guarantees at least seven years of passion and love. Taking a ritual bath with yarrow can help increase your psychic abilities. It can also be used to exorcise negative energies from a place or person. Learn more about Yarrow.