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Old 12-05-12   #21
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Default Re: Working with wands

I had, still have in fact, a wand carved entirely from green quartz. I liked its coldness and used to use it as a focus.
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Old 12-06-12   #22
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Default Re: Working with wands

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Originally Posted by ffetcher View Post
A few people look down on practitioners who use tools at all. I wouldn't want to rely on them
I've always hated that line! You can use something because you like it, because you have it, because it helps you, but that's not the same thing as desperately relying on a mundane object!
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Old 12-06-12   #23
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Default Re: Working with wands

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Originally Posted by PrincessKLS View Post
Well I've gotten Gemstones that are called wands but they look nothing like the one LOT posted.

I didn't know if their properties were different somehow.
What was it like? What did it look like? Do you have any pictures?
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Old 12-06-12   #24
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Default Re: Working with wands

of not using tools at all...

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Originally Posted by LadyOfTheTrees View Post
I've always hated that line! You can use something because you like it, because you have it, because it helps you, but that's not the same thing as desperately relying on a mundane object!
I mentioned it because people who are relatively new to this stuff may not have come across it, but most assuredly will. I'm with Lady on this, and personally, I've always considered it another aspect of the one-upmanship that is part of the occult/pagan scene. But a corollary does have a bearing on Princess's last posting.

The 'wand' we use most is a tapered piece of wood about six inches long, the only decoration being some incised grooves. This is very different from the others that have been described here, and obviously also from the gemstones Princess mentioned. The wood is 'special', a found object from a special place, which I worked on for a week, literally carrying it everywhere and with it between the pillows as we slept. We took it back, together with the chalice for which it was made, to where the wood came from, to consecrate it and give thanks. Would we be sad if it got lost (you'd need a big hammer to damage it - I'm an engineer by training)? Yes we would. Do we rely on it? Nope. It makes certain rituals simpler because we're comfortable with it. But we can work without it. I said already that we use the extended fingers symbol for 'blade', and in fact we do blade+chalice by wrapping the palm of a hand round the extended fingers.

But (he says, finally getting to the point) like most others here we normally use the wand as a focus, and for some things where most Wiccans would say 'blade'. So, you can use many different types of wand for the same thing, and you can use wands for things that other people might not; might use something else. I'd like to see a picture of your gemstones, but sight unseen, Princess, I'd suggest that you practice regularly focusing an intention into it[1], and see whether, for you, it begins to have an effect. If it does, then for you, it's a 'wand'. If it doesn't, then it's not the right wand for you. There are other ways of explaining and doing this, though, and others here might have a better idea.

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[1] from a few recent posts, a fairly obvious one springs to mind - PM me if you want.
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Old 12-06-12   #25
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Default Re: Working with wands

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How many of you out there use wands as a regular (even daily) practice and more often than just during ceremonies that are part of the holidays of the eight fold year?
I can't say I use mine daily, but in the Avalonian tradition we consider the process of asking for the wood/gifting the tree, then making the wand that will become an extension of your body and Will, to be a sacred processs. Nothing in any of my training or experience suggests that we become dependent on tools, but the making of them is a deeply magical act and we learn through that process, as well as through the formal practise of focusing and directing energy. I have a variety of wands, most made by me, that I use at various times.I always use my Silver Bough (apple wand) for Avalonian work; in other rituals I pretty much vacillate between willow and birch, which represent different facets of female power (as you well know, LoT). I might use them simply to open the gates of the four directions, in ritual, r in magic to direct the power raised (by a variety of methods). I'm making amulets of both willow and birch to carry with me, representative of my connection with these trees. The process brings us into a shamanic connection with tree-spirits as well as connecting us backwards through time, with all the magicians, witches and medicine women that came before. The argument against the making and use of tools misses this incredibly powerful and important aspect.


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If you are one of these people, what do you use your wand(s) for and what are some creative ways to give this tool more use?[
Off the top of my head, I'd say start with Fire-meditations, lay out some of your Wands cards (or the whole suit), make a small fire shrine, read up and include any deities who might be considered fire-related, learn the correspondences of the South if you're not fluent in them all just yet. Look up and meditate on the astrological Fire in your chart. Practise the simple raising of power and directing it, which charges your wand enormously. But I do also recommend doing these things in context of working with all four elements, as you know it's all to easy to become unbalanced elementally..and many of us are already lopsided, astrologically - so there's a Fire exercise right there; if you find you have an overload or lack of Fire in your chart, how might you work with your Fire tool to balance that?

As for a name, oh yes - I was taught that way too and name all my tools. Some come instantly and others, have taken more time. Again, superficial folks will say you "don;t need that" but I have always found that the discipline of following the Old Ways is more richly empowering than can be known by those who dismiss it all.I can whip up a shitstorm of energy without leaving this chair and direct it with very practised aim. That's not a brag, it's a simple fact. But the whole journey of meditating on the trees, ritually asking the tree for a gift, thanking and then the whole making and decorating of a wand, staff, stang, shield, pentacle, whatever, is far ore important than you know until you do it.
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Old 12-06-12   #26
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Default Re: Working with wands

I got my wand from my Mother Tree:
I was walking and it kinda fell in front of me, so I thanked her and took it. I have a staff too but I am still not finished with it.
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Old 12-07-12   #27
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Default Re: Working with wands

Well spoken ffetcher and Fera!
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Old 12-07-12   #28
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Default Re: Working with wands

What do you think about wands that were made by someone else? Not just a random someone else, but handmade by a Pagan artist and also a friend, for you? Does anyone know any history on the lore of gift-giving/passing down magical items?
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Old 12-07-12   #29
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Default Re: Working with wands

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Originally Posted by LadyOfTheTrees View Post
What do you think about wands that were made by someone else? Not just a random someone else, but handmade by a Pagan artist and also a friend, for you? Does anyone know any history on the lore of gift-giving/passing down magical items?
I've made wands for other people I know well. Working with wood may actually be hereditary for me, and although I'd urge anyone to have a go, not everyone can do it to their own satisfaction. But for making a magical tool to 'work' for me, I need to be sitting there thinking 'which choice would ... make here?'. So I could probably do it for people I've corresponded (aka argued) with regularly on ESF even if we hadn't ever met FTF, but there'd probably be several megs of PMs even so. I doubt I could ever make stuff like that on spec for sale in Magik Earth, although if many more clients go bust...

That's not to decry shop-bought stuff. Our very-special chalice, the story of which is elsewhere here but I can't find the thread right now, was purchased from a market stall in Gent. My Flemish is good enough that I know the stall-holder is Anna, and to get directions to a bar near my hotel where she later met me for a drink. It's not good enough for me to understand who made it, although she was trying hard to tell me, and (a) clearly, the maker didn't know us and (b) I think it was meant to be a pot-pourri holder. It was just obviously right for the job.

Of the others that we possess, one I commissioned from a local pewterer friend and the other is an acrylic job I made myself.

This latter is why I'd always try to help anyone doing their own woodwork: it's a testament that although, as Stewart Farrar commented in Twelve Maidens, the more of yourself you put into something the more you get out of it, working with something that doesn't meet your own expectations is harder than working without the tool at all. It was built for a special purpose, and it was 'okay'. Now I know what I did wrong, I'll have another go sometime, but I need to build up enough favours to borrow the local CNC lathe for a couple of hours, which is an awful lot of designing fret-boards, building contact mike pre-amps and suchlike. I shot-blasted six lamp-posts and built a dog-kennel last time. Allowing for the rate at which I'm cashing similar favours with other people, it might be simpler just to enrole on a course that gives me legit access to the thing, but I don't have the money right now.

blessings
ffetcher
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Old 02-21-13   #30
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Default Re: Working with wands

Funnily enough - I was talking about wands tonight with Beloved. I don't actually have too much in the line of standard tools.

Like ffetcher - what I have are things that I have found / repurposed, or in the case of my ritual dagger (although hardly ever used) - things that have been made for me and gifted to me.

I do, however, have a hankering for a wand and a staff - specifically from a tree struck by lightening, although I could not tell you why.
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