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!


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

What you see on this page is the titles and first paragraph of the articles in our occult glossary whose titles begin with the letter S. 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.


The Sabbats are the witches' holidays. The word is used for special holidays and feast days celebrated by many Pagans and especially Wiccans and traditional witches. Depending on tradition, there are usually 4 or 8 Sabbats in the year following the pattern of the Wheel of the Year. Some groups celebrate the four Celtic fire festivals as Sabbats. These are: Imbolc, Beltane, Lughnassadh and Samhain. Others celebrate the equinoxes and solstices as Sabbats as well. These are: Ostara, Litha, Mabon...


A sachet is a small cloth bag that is either stitched or tied closed at the top and contains herbs, crystals or other small items carefully selected by a magical practitioner to bring about a desired change in the area the sachet is kept or for the person who carries it. For example, a sachet stuffed with items to draw money may be kept in a cash register. A sachet designed to protect against harm while traveling may be hung from a rear view mirror. A sachet to protect against theft may be...

Sacred Marriage

Also known as the hieros gamos, the Sacred Marriage is the perfect union of male and female within alchemy to create a spiritually and physically perfected whole. Or at least a whole that approaches the perfect, since some alchemists would say that the only perfect being is the Christian God. Carl Jung avidly studied historical alchemy since he related the terms and beliefs in alchemy to his own beliefs about the inner mind, the female soul or anima, the male soul or animus, the sub-conscious,...

Sacred Space

Sacred space is any space that has been designated for a specific sacred purpose. Many Pagans and magickal practitioners have a designated sacred space in or around their home in which pagan rituals and magickal ceremonies are held and spells cast. However, many do not have a specific area due to space and privacy constraints and so their sacred space (or ritual space) must be newly created before each working. For many, their sacred space (or ritual space) doubles as a bedroom, kitchen table,...


Sanctification is the process of making things holy or sacred. See sanctify and consecrate


To sanctify an object, place or person is to declare it holy and set it aside for sacred work, outside the mundane. There are many variables within this definition; an item (or place) may be set aside specifically for magical work, either for general magickal use, or for a specific purpose. Or an item (or location) may be set aside for religious use, either dedicated to a specific God or for general religious use for the purposes of worship of any Gods. Sometimes things (and people) are...


Santeria means “The Way of the Saints”. It is an African-Hispanic hybrid religion which originated in the Caribbean. Best known for it’s Latin rhythms, devotee possession and animal sacrifices, it is considered to be a ‘syncretic’ or hybrid religion because it originated out of a blending of the culture of the Yoruba peoples brought there as slaves and Catholicism. The Yoruba people are from Nigeria, Benin and Togo on the west coast of the African Continent. These peoples were also sent as...


The scourge is a ceremonial whip. It may be used during ritual to demonstrate humility before the Gods, but more often it is used as a tool to aid in achieving altered states of consciousness.


Scrying is a method of divination that involves gazing into a usually reflective or translucent surface such as a scrying glass, a crystal ball or a scrying pool. Crystals, fire and smoke make also be used. Practitioners gaze into the surface, or past it, in order to achieve a trance-like state. While in a trance, the practitioner may see spiritual visions or visions of the future or activities taking place elsewhere in the present reflected in the scrying surface. See also Hydromancy Pyromancy...

Scrying Glass

A scrying glass is a mirror that is used as a focal point for scrying or to encourage clairvoyance. The mirror may be a typical reflective, silver-colored mirror, but very often it is black and is referred to as a black mirror. A scrying glass may also be called a seeing-eye glass or a magic mirror. A scrying glass may be made of glass or highly polished metal or some reflective stone. I have seen a silver platter used quite effectively and Nostradamus is reported to have had a scrying glass of...

Scrying Mirror

A scrying mirror is usually (but not always) a black reflective surface, rather than a silvery one. As its name would suggest, a scrying mirror is used for scrying. It is used as a focal point for meditative scrying and sometimes just for meditation. Sometimes the practitioner will see images in the mirror itself, but most often the mirror aids the practitioner into settling into a meditative state and answers and images come to the practitioner's mind aided by the relaxed state.

Seax Wica

Seax-Wica (also known as Saxon Witchcraft) is a tradition of modern Pagan Witchcraft which is largely inspired by the iconography of historical Anglo-Saxon Paganism. The tradition also draws inspiration from Anglo-Saxon Witchcraft in England between the 5th and 11th centuries CE, during the Early Middle Ages. However, unlike Asatru or Theodism, Saxon Witchcraft is not a reconstruction of the early medieval religion itself. The tradition was founded in 1973 by Raymond Buckland, an English-born...

second sight

Second sight is a poetic term for extrasensory perception or psychic sensory awareness that is experienced similarly to vision. This awareness may be experienced differently by different people. Some report the ability to see spirit beings or events that will happen in the future, that have happened in the past or that are happening in a remote location.


A seeker is a student of magick who has not yet settled on a specific path or established a magickal identity but is open to exploration and eager to absorb information. The term does not imply that a person is a beginner, though many seekers are. There are some magical scholars who spend their entire lives upon the seeker's path.


A servitor is a creation of Chaos magick, a spirit like being formed of the energy and intention of its creator that does not have a Will of its own but is bound to the will of its creator. They are advanced though forms. A servitor is usually programmed to carry out only a one or two specific tasks and will have enough consciousness to do these, but usually not much more. Servitors are sort of like energy robots, if you like.

Shadow Period

The shadow period is an astrological term describing the period of time that it takes a retrograde planet to complete the entire cycle of movement from the furthest point of its retrograde back to the point it left before it went retrograde. Those who do embrace this idea believe that retrograde effects begin as soon as the planet passes the pre-retrograde shadow point, that is, the point that the planet will retrograde back to, and do not completely fade away until the planet has reached the...


Shamanism is a spiritual or mystical practice that is characterized by the use of altered states of consciousness and contact with other worlds and spirit beings, Gods and ancestors to gather information and/or bring about a result in our physical world. The word Shamanism originates from the Northern Eurasian Tungusic language group (Siberia, Mongolia, China) and was appropriated by Anthropologists to describe religious practices around the world that are superficially similar to those...


A sigil is a symbol that is drawn for a specific magical purpose; to represent the intent of the drawer or to represent a specific entity. In Medieval systems of ceremonial magick systems, a sigil was the symbol of a specific entity, an angel or a demon which allowed a magician to summon and control the entity. In modern magical systems, a sigil is often used in magical work to represent a specific intention or to give shape to a thoughtform. In Chaos magic, a word or a statement may be reduced...


A simple is a curative preparation using a single herb. It may also refer simply to a single herb itself, used for healing. An herbalist who uses simples, one herb at a time or preparations of just one herb at a time, is a simpler. Learn More The Spirit of Simples by Susun Weed HerbalSimples.com

Smoke cleansing

Smoke cleansing, or purification by smoke involves using smoke, usually from burning aromatic herbs or incense, to purify the body or space, usually to drive off unwanted energies and entities. See also smudge and fumigation.

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