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Old 05-29-2016, 12:26 PM
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Ysabeau Ysabeau is offline
Caretaker of the Grove
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Appleton, Wisconsin
Posts: 3,424
Do you need a little guidance creating your BoS?

Merry Meet Everyone!

I thought that sharing this in the Book of Shadows forum might be of some help to new students of the Craft. There is always a lot of confusion when it comes to the ominous Book of Shadows that Hollywood and mainstream media put out there for the world.

First, let's disband a few of those myths shall we?

Myth:A Book of Shadows is the work of the Devil.

Now, if you have been a student of the Craft for any period of time, you know that this is simply not the case, as it does not relate to the Craft in any way. If you are new to the Craft and have yet to learn much about it, the first thing that should be made clear is that the Devil is an enigma of the Christian religion and holds no ground in the Craft. Second, to say that it is the work of the Devil is to imply that what an individual person thinks and feels is that of the Devil as well. Ask yourself, would any person consider a diary kept on their nightstand the work of the Devil? It's not very likely that anyone would say such a think.

Myth:A Book of Shadows is a spellbook.

While this is true, in part, it isn't completely accurate. A witch's Book of Shadows is so much more than just spells and incantations. It contains the most valuable aspects of the Craft for that person. Their soul is right in the pages, because it holds those things, spells included, inside it's pages. He or she often includes such things as personally written circle castings, personal experiences with the Divine, teachings that they value above all else, and some even use it as a diary.

Having said this, it's easy to see why someone might mistake it for a simple spell book, but at the same time, they are very wrong. You can go to a bookstore and purchase a spell book if you like, but it's not quite the same as the Book of Shadows that you build yourself and hold very close to your heart.

I've used two great books as references to building my own Book of Shadows and have listed them below for you, in case you want a little help yourself.

It's important to remember, too, that your Book doesn't have to be a traditional one. You need not go out and buy some huge, thick, heavy, leather-bound monstrosity to have a Book of Shadows. Many Pagans today actually use a digital Book of Shadows that they back up on the Cloud. When you think about it, this is rather clever and very rational. Even if their home were to, tragically, catch fire, their Book is safe because it's stored on a secure server somewhere. Crafty, indeed!

I've experimented with many different forms of a Book of Shadows over the years. I've had more traditional forms, as well as non-traditional like binders. I've tried digital and home made books with my own special hand crafted paper. There are so many ways in which you can craft your Book, so don't let anyone make that decision for you.

Personally, I have a good number of books, but I have one special book that is small enough to fit in my purse or leave on my altar. This is my primary book. However, I have binders kept for other information that I have gathered over the years. I have a book of spells, a book of references, a book of thoughts, and a book of rituals. For these, I print my works out and then store them in page protectors in the appropriate binder. That way, when I need something specific, all the information is easily accessible and quick to find. But my most important information and my personal creations are in the primary book that I have which is all hand written.

Everyone is different, so you must find what works for you. Here are two books that may assist you with your journey:



I hope that this information clears up any confusion that you might have in regards to your own Book of Shadows and that you find the journey of crafting it both enjoyable and enlightening!

In love and light,

First Degree Priestess, Second Degree Dedicant & Mentor
~Past Life Reader Ysabeau ~
Herbalism & Reiki Student
Esbat Program & Sig Tag Team Facilitator
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