As witches and Pagans, we often have to build our own practice, at least in part. This area of the site has tools to help you do that, and to help you deepen and expand your practice over time.
The basic steps
It can be a challenge to figure out where to start. These five steps will help you figure out how to get going, hopefully with less frustration.
- Look at your self and your current life.
- Learn about different paths.
- Choose somewhere to start.
- Start with some simple practices.
- Build deeper practices.
Where are you right now?
- Taking inventory: your interests, history, limitations, and resources.
- Initial steps for better learning: how to help yourself as you start out.
- Pagans, privacy, and online conversation
- Being open to change: advice as you begin to look at making changes in your life
Learn about different paths
- Some general suggestions to help you sort through common options.
- Why religious witchcraft? An essay about why you might consider religious witchcraft in specific, and what that might mean for you.
- “I believe X, what path am I?” turns out not to be a useful starting place. Here’s why, and what you can look at instead.
- As you get started, give yourself the best start by being open to different options.
- Set aside assumptions from other religions : These may get in the way while you’re trying to figure out what does suit you.
- Resources for learning more about different paths: some ideas on places to start.
Choose somewhere to start
This next step is where you start looking for materials that will help you learn about your chosen path. What these are will depend on the path, but they might include:
Finding books, websites, and discussions that tell you more about the path you’re interested in. Check out the Doing section of this site for common religious witchcraft practices, and Learning and Resources sections for some recommended titles and resources.
Connecting with other people who follow roughly the same path. Explore books, podcasts, local events, and other options. The Connecting section of this site has more.
Picking a couple of initial sources to start with. Don’t feel you need to read or learn everything immediately.
Start with simple practices
My articles on practices in religious witchcraft have their own section, but the links below talk about how to make use of these practices. (You may also want to check out the Adapting section for working with specific needs or limits you may have.)
- Starting practices : Five practices that will help you get started with a good foundation.
- Starting tools : A guide to building up a collection of simple, inexpensive, and widely available tools (and advice about the others.)
- Am I ready to try this? Figuring out about when you’re ready to try a new skill or practice.
- ‘right’ ways and ‘wrong’ ways – why (and when) does how you do something matter?
- This feels really silly. Should it? We can feel very odd when we’re trying new things. Sometimes that’s just fine. Sometimes it’s a sign of a problem.
Build deeper practices
- Constructing a path: A full resource on constructing a personal path is beyond the scope of this site, but here’s some things to think about.
- Five ways to deepen your practice: Ways to take your practice deeper over time.
- Plan what you want to learn more about: Here are some suggestions including three examples of approaches that can last a few months at a time.
- Why a year and a day? Why do witchcraft groups talk about this as a timeframe?
- A possible first year of training : This is how I’d train a student, to give you an idea of the scope of what might be included and why. (You should not try to duplicate this: a lot of it will not apply to your situation, but it may be useful as a model.)
What my practice looks like
Examples often help me with figuring out what I should do in my own practice. These articles talk about more of how my practice have changed over time – and about things that aren’t part of my practice for various reasons.
Don’t feel yours should look like this! Do what works for you (and as relevant, the Gods, powers, or other beings you build relationships with.) There are obviously also a number of details of my practice I don’t talk about here.
- My practice (historical and now)
- Things I don’t do: some things are not part of my practices, for different reasons.
- A Witch In Practice (series of blog posts). Here’s the first one if you want to work through them in order.
- My current approach to daily and weekly offerings.