Welcome to the Witchipedia's glossary of occult terms. Here you will find terms often used in the Pagan, Heathen, magical and occult communities that may confuse a newcomer. This encyclopedia of magical terminology is a wonderful place to get started if you don't know where to start in the Witchipedia. If you don't see the term you are looking for here, feel free to bring your question to the community in our forums or Ask A Witch!


We have 331 terms listed in our glossary with more being added each day.

What you see on this page is the name and first paragraph of the articles in our occult glossary. To view the full article, please click on the title. You will also be able to comment, ask questions and add more information to the article once you've navigated to its page.

Astral Plane - The Astral Plane is where you go when you engage in astral projection. It is not so much a place, as a state of energetic existence. The astral plane exists as a sort of shadow to the material world and is populated with the energetic aspects of material beings, as well as energetic and spirit beings that have no current material / corporeal existence. The astral plane can only be reached by humans through altered states of consciousness that allow their spirit or energetic or astral body to travel freely of their material body. Some believe the astral plane is the same as dream space, while others insist they are two different states.

Astral Projection - Astral projection is the act of separating your astral body or your consciousness, from your physical self. It is a (usually) voluntary out of body experience that allows the practitioner to perform any number of tasks as pure consciousness that would be otherwise impossible, or at least more difficult, due to the limitations of the physical body.

Astrology - Astrology is the art and science of predicting certain events and patterns based on the observation of planetary movements and relationships and the study of how these movements and relationships affect terrestrial world events and the health, moods, relationships and personalities of individuals. Predictions are made by observing the relative positions of the moon, sun and planets in relation to one another and their perceived locations in the sky as observed from Earth. It is important to note that while modern Astronomy calculates planetary position from the solar center of the Universe, Astrology uses the ancient geocentric model to make calculations. Once a single study, Western Astrology and Astronomy separated into two different disciplines in the 17th century CE.

Athame - An athame (pronounced: ath-uh-may) is a ritual blade used in modern Witchcraft tradition. In Wicca, it is a (usually) black handled, double sided blade, ritual knife. Its purpose is strictly symbolic. The blade is usually strait and dull. It represents the male aspect of divinity and can be used to cast and cut a circle during ritual as well as to direct energy in much the same way as a wand.

Atheist - Atheist philosophy holds that there are no Gods. It does not mean necessarily that there are no spirits, that there is no magic or that we simply cease to exist when we die, although many atheists do believe that is the case. The word comes from the Greek meaning simply, Godless.

Attuned - When two objects are attuned to one another, they vibrate in harmony. Their energies are alike or aligned through a process of attunement.

attunement - Attunement is the process of bringing different energies into harmony or of preparing one energetic entity to receive and accept energy from another source.

Augur - In ancient Rome, an augur was a specialized priest who was consulted to translate omens and to use various forms of divination to decide the proper course of action. Most usually, the augur observed the behavior of birds but might find other portents significant as well. Augurs were often consulted on matters of state, including military matters and taking the auspices was a ceremonial part of just about any important decision making for the state and for private citizens.

Aura - The aura is a subtle luminescence that surrounds all objects hinting at the energy contained within. With training, individuals can learn to see auras and "read" them, using their brightness, color, and consistency to learn about health, mood and personality. Some believe that the aura provides some protection against psychic attack while others believe that the aura is something of an energy overflow, that is, the energy that doesn't fit inside hovers around the outside in the form of an aura. The belief also exists that both ideas are true. Either way, the brightness of the aura is believed to be directly related to the spiritual strength and health of its owner and, as the spirit, mind and body are tightly connected, his or her physical and mental health and strength as well.

Ausar Auset Society - The Ausar Auset Society is a pan-African spiritual movement and religious organization based on a variety of traditional tribal cultures of Africa including, but not limited to Kamitic cosmology and philosophy based on the Egyptian Tree of Life and Ausarian1 religion of ancient Egypt. The society provides training from an Afro-Centric viewpoint on the subjects of history, yoga, nutrition, herbal lore, astrology, and Kamitic philosophy, culture, meditation and ritual. Oracle services are also available to members.

Autumnal Equinox - The equinox occurs when the sun is lined up directly with the Earth's equator and the Earth's axis is tilted neither toward or away from the sun. At this time the day and night are just about the same length, about 12 hours each. During the Autumnal Equinox, the sun passes over the Earth's equator going from North to South. There are two equinoxes each year, the Vernal Equinox in the spring and the Autumnal Equinox in the autumn. The word equinox is derived from the Latin aequus meaning "equal" and nox meaning "night".

Balefire - A balefire is a ritual bonfire used by some Pagan traditions in Sabbat celebrations, particularly Fire festivals such as Beltane and Litha. From Old English bǣl = funeral pyre though some believe it is related to Bel or Belanos.

Banish - To banish something is to drive it away or send it away.

Banishing - Banishing spells are spells designed to send something or someone away or to prevent their return.

Bath Tea - A bath tea is an herbal bath with both healing and magickal applications. To create a bath tea, herbs are placed in a cloth bag and water is poured over the bag as the tub is filled to infuse the water with the properties of the herbs within the bag. The bag may also be placed directly into the bathwater with the bather.

Besom - A besom is a ceremonial broom. It is used to clear an area of unwanted energy, to establish sacred space and for blessing and protecting the home. It is also used in marriage and other ceremonies to symbolize the end of one thing and the beginning of another.

Binding - A binding spell is a spell that symbolically ties the target up restricting his, her or its actions or keeping him or her (or it) tied to another individual, object, place or situation.

bindrune - A bindrune or bind-rune is a combination of runes in a single image to represent something else. The runes are bound together in various ways. It could be as simple as a name, or something like a spell sigil.

Black Magic - There are several ways to view black magic it is as a term that has been used in many different contexts. We will attempt to begin with the most widely accepted views.

Black Magick - Black magick is a largely subjective term for describing magick based on intent or style of practice. There are several ways to view black magic as a term that has been used in many different contexts. We will attempt to begin with the most widely accepted views.

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