9V6RJ3rpFgRWRKz9atzwHWSEAzE Useful Articles Hard To Ignore: How Witchcraft and Spells Came to Be

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How Witchcraft and Spells Came to Be

The definitions of witchcraft depend on what field of study you are coming from. However, it is synonymous, most often than not, to sorcery, magic, and spell.

The dictionary defines it as the “art of bringing magical or preternatural power to bear” and the “influence of magic, sorcery, or charms.” In science, witchcraft is associated with the use of physic mechanisms to generate wicked powers without rituals and spells. Meanwhile, Social Anthropology, a study on human social behavior, classifies witchcraft as an ideology that explains various human misfortunes. It involves a supernatural being or a person capable of inflicting harm on an individual or a community in general.

A witch is a practitioner of witchcraft. The origin of the word came from Anglo-Saxon’s "wicca," meaning wise. Also related to Middle Low German, “wicken” means “to conjure.”

The history of witchcraft is as old as the rich history of human evolution. Some studies say the first witches were healthcare providers who discovered medicinal plants and herbs that affect euphoric emotions. This discovery led to shamanism, where a chemical-induced person talks to divine beings through rituals. Because of their abilities as a medium, they assumed roles significant in social decisions.

The evolution of witchcraft practices came side by side with the evolution of these assumed roles. The pagan beliefs blended with the Indo-European groups and spawned practices such as potions, casting spells, as well as performing works of magic. As religion became superior, witchcraft receded to the periphery of society. This time, it was branded as demon worship.

Primarily, witchcraft practices involve communication with the dead and divine spirits, weather manipulation, many medical applications, as well as adverse influence on human being’s mind, body, and will through casting spells. The negative witchcraft is usually called cursing and hexing. The latter—casting of spells—is the most apparent and known ability of a witch. The dictionary defines spell as “a word or formula to have a magical power.” Hence, a spell consists of set of words, verse, as well as rituals and actions. Most of the time, it is the combination of words, rituals, and materials.

The power of spells is based on the energy a practitioner puts into the rituals, or sometimes the will of the wisher to put negative or positive effect on an individual.

Spells are cast on varied methods; each has varying requirements, effects, and consequences.   Some examples of casting spells are by inscription of rune or sigils on an object to give such object magical powers. Another method involves the immolation or binding of a wax or clay image—usually witches use puppets—to affect an individual. There are also spells that require recitation of incantations, performance of physical rituals, and the use of herbs and medicinal plants.

Varying classifications of spell are known today. For example charms on love and success, spells on love, money, fertility, as well as ways to break curses. You may also encounter terms such as black magic, Voodoo dolls, Rudraksh beads, Hoodoo and so on.

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