How Witches Open the Door to a Higher Level of Practice


“What makes a real difference?” I asked in a conversation with a spiritual elder.

One word arose: “Listening.”

I realized that listening actually moves us, witches, to a higher level of practice.

Here are three insights.

  1. Listen to what people near you are truly saying.

Someone tried to give me advice that I didn’t ask for. I disagreed with their assessment. But I listened to their words, ideas, and emotion.

My point is that listening, in this situation, does not mean agreement. You do not need to follow another person’s advice.

It’s more like a friend saying, “You might want to take a look at this.”

If you disagree with someone, it doesn’t mean that they are completely wrong.

Listening is a skill. And just like magick, you need to practice it to get better.

Here is an example of listening. A family member has a process. When someone says something that he does not relate to immediately, he says, “I’ll stir that in my soup.” He means that he will give the idea some thought and time. He is free to change his perception or approach later.

The effective witch listens to conversations because clues for uplifting your life can show up in such conversations.

  1. Listen to the God and Goddess

“And ye shall be free from slavery….Let my worship be within the heart that rejoiceth, for behold: all acts of love and pleasure are my rituals. And therefore let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honour and humility, mirth and reverence within you.” – The Goddess speaking in The Charge of the Goddess, written by Doreen Valiente

When listening to the God and Goddess, practice quieting your mind. A practice of meditation and prayer can help you.

We can look on being caught in negative thinking as a form of slavery. It helps to practice your own methods to shift out of negative thought patterns. Someone I know places her hand on her heart and tells herself: “I’m okay. I’m safe. I’m loved. God and Goddess love me.” She tells me that this helps her shift out of fearful thoughts. In a quieter state of mind, she talks with the God and Goddess.

  1. Pay attention for the “Signs”

We can become good at spotting the signs from the Gods. Signs can come in many forms from unexpected appearances of certain animals to something that will make you stop and think. For example, many witches consider seeing an image of a white heron or the actual bird as a sign of the Goddess. It is a positive sign.

“I am the Gracious Goddess, who gives the gift of joy unto the heart.” – The Goddess speaking in The Charge of the Goddess, written by Doreen Valiente

When you receive a positive sign, devote some time to think about it and meditate on it. Watch for any further signs. 

May these insights support your path.

Blessed Be,

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How to Give Back to the Gods — and The Heron

The Heron Logo

The Heron

Ardea Herodotus

Perhaps you’ve noticed our new logo for this blog. It is the heron. Why this particular bird? The heron has been a representation of the Goddess for a long time. Below is the heron’s story as told by my friend Kay Pannell.


The name Ardea Herodotus is the Linnaean classification for the heron. The Ancient Greek historian, Herodotus, wrote in the 8th Century BC. His history of the fall of Troy included this:

After the fall of Troy, Prince Aeneas traveled to the area around Rome. One of the lands he visited was the land of the Rutuli, whose capitol was Ardea and whose ruler was Turnus. Turnus had been betrothed to Livinia, daughter of a neighboring king.

Unfortunately, the king decided to give her to Aeneas instead. (You’d think after Aeneas’s brother Paris took Helen of Troy away from her husband, King Menelaus of Sparta, he’d have wised up about taking a woman away from a man with an army—but no). A war ensued between Aeneas’s fleet and Turnus’s army. During the hostilities, the city of Ardea was burned. Herodotus reported that from the ashes of the city a white bird arose that no one had seen before. It was the heron, and for ever afterward, the heron was called Ardea. When Carl Linnaeus began his classification in the 17th Century, he called the heron, Ardea Herodotus, for the story.

The word, Ardea, also translates as “earth goddess” in Greek.


Written by Kay Pannell

Thanks, Kay.

This story is here to stay. I hope you enjoyed it. Now here’s my post for this week.


How to Give Back to the Gods

How do I give back to the Gods? It’s something I think about daily. When I was younger I had no idea. But then I encountered this quote:

Your talent is God’s gift to you. What you do with it is your gift back to God.   – Leo Buscaglia

This hits the mark I think. We may not thing we have much to give back but all of us has something, our talent—the gifts the Gods have given us.

When we use our unique gifts to help others, the Gods smile upon us. For this is why we were given the gifts. To make each other’s lives more enjoyable.

Using your talents doesn’t mean you have to make it a business. You don’t need to produce products or live on a demanding schedule to serve others.

Maybe you like to cook or bake. Prepare some food and take it to a friend who is sick. Or take it to an elderly woman who lives alone and on a fixed income. This will mean a lot to someone who needs something but has no other way to get it. (Be careful to ask about dietary needs and allergies to guard the person’s health.)

If you don’t cook, do you play music? Go to a children’s hospital and play for the kids. You don’t need to book gigs and have tons of followers. You’ll still make an important difference in the hospital.

Can’t think of some particular gift to share? Donate some of your time and do volunteer work for some charity. For example, I donated time at The Peninsula Humane Society. I helped with the small animals.

Now, I write this blog. This came as a surprise because of my dyslexia. But I was led to writing by the Gods themselves. It’s hard to argue with that.

But you don’t need the Gods’ intervention to tell you what to share with others. Try something. You won’t know what is a helpful activity until you experiment a little.

Here are some possibilities:

Your local animal shelters

Retirement home/hospice

Homeless shelters

Soup kitchens for the homeless

Local Hospitals

The World Wildlife Fund

Green Peace

Habitat for Humanity

Consider looking up local organizations that need volunteers. Just donating a few hours a week can make a big difference.

Express compassion and love as you invoke your talents. This pleases the Gods.

By pleasing the Gods we honor them.

You can make a difference for the Gods.

How do you please the Gods with your talents? Let me know in the comments section. Thank you.

Blessed Be,

Moonwater SilverClaw

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