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The Basics: Terms, Tools & Trappings

Beginning with Basics

The preliminary steps of any process is called Groundwork

Learning anything new is a process, and there are pleasures and rewards along this winding path. In Wicca, this groundwork includes the holidays, the rituals and the trappings that go with them.

An awakening is a realization, a coming into awareness, or a revival of interest in something, especially religion. We all have to find our way, and if your way includes witchcraft and the Wiccan beliefs, you can find a place to start here. There are plenty of books and sites to help guide you, but the most effective way to learn is through experience. 

Groundwork is the foundation of everything else, and without a solid basis, the entire thing may fall in on itself. Start your Wiccan journey by taking time, traditionally a year and a day, to learn and discover what magick lies ahead and how it will affect your life. Being well grounded in these basics will provide you with the structure to build upon, making you stronger and better in the end.

Groundwork for Wicca, Rituals and Holidays and the Trappings
wiccan altar space with lit candles, burning incense in a cauldron, crystals, jars and a paper with glyphs
wiccan altar space with lit candles, burning incense in a cauldron, crystals, jars and a paper with glyphs

The Solitary Wiccan

Always Trust Your Inner Goddess

In the east where the sun rises and things begin, we open our circle. East is ruled by the element of air, representing knowledge. It is here the journey begins. To master anything, we start by learning about it, and this is no exception. Here we discover the lingo, the tools of the altar, and other groundwork that will provide a solid foundation upon which you can build.

Next, it is time to turn to the south, ruled by fire. The element of fire represents passion and energy; it pushes us to continue the journey, flaming up when needed, to drive us forward along the path. If we want to master someting, it takes time and energy. The passion and excitement for the subject provides this energy, to draw on when we stumble or get distracted along the way.

The circle continues to the west, ruled by water that represents the balance learned through experience. Mastery of anything takes time and experience, and these are what give us good judgement. This maturity brings with it a better understanding of how to relate the things we have learned into our lives in better and more meaningful ways.

We face north next, ruled by the element of earth. Earth represents wisdom, that hard-earned prize that combines knowledge, passion and experience into an entirety. When we have walked this path long enough, the lessons we have learned have been tempered in the process into the mastery once dreamed of.

"The most effective way to do it, is to do it."

~Amelia Earhart

“The beginning is the most important part of the work.” ~Plato

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” ~Sun Tzu

It isn’t unreasonable to allow some time to learn and decide if the path is for you.

Terms and Language

Lingo is the vocabulary or jargon of a particular subject or group of people. Here’s some Wiccan Lingo.

What’s with all these deities? Hecate, Pan, the Goddess, the God – Let’s break it all down.

Altar and Tools

Athame or wand, pentacle or pentagram; all about the Wiccan altar and the ritual tools.

Black, White or Grey?

What are we, Gandalf? What’s the difference? Are you a white witch?

What Kind of Witch?

Eclectic witch or kitchen witch? Is a garden witch the same as a green witch? Figure it out here.

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