A Beginners Guide to Keeping a Book of Shadows

What is a book of shadows? It’s a personal record of your most potent magic, a self-written guide to your spells, charms, and other magickal tips and tricks. There are no rules to keeping a book of shadows. It’s meant to be of help to you and you alone on your journey as a mystic.

Make it how you want it, but here are a few things to help get you started:

  • Use a blank notebook, or binder. You might want to rearrange the pages, but it’s up to you how you’d like to design your book of shadows. Title your book of shadows, and write your name on the front, making it officially yours.
  • Cleanse and consecrate your book of spells, making it as sacred as all your other magical items. 
  • Write down your spells, incantations, recipes, ect. by hand rather than by typing it out. Your handwriting has an energy of its own, unlike anything else. This transfer of energy from pen to paper is significant when writing in your Book of Spells. Of course, it’s not uncommon to keep a virtual Book of Shadows, so if that works for you then go for it!
  • Keep your Book of Shadows organized. As your spiritual practice grows, you may find that your book of shadows becomes full and a bit scattered. You can organize it using tabbed dividers, or by using a three ring binder so that pages can be rearranged as necessary. If you wish, write out an index or table of contents to help you find certain pages easier. You might want to organize your spells by their certain purposes, such as spells for prosperity, or protection.

What to include in a Book of Shadows:

The laws of your spiritual tradition. There are many different types of witchcraft. If you have committed to a certain ideology or tradition, write down what your beliefs are, and keep them in the front of your book as a reminder. This may change overtime, and that’s ok. The beauty of your Book of Shadows is that it is always a work in progress!

Write a Dedication. Are you dedicated to a certain deity, or spiritual practice? You may want to write down a simple dedication near the beginning of your book of shadows. Ex: I, ________, dedicate myself to the Goddess __________ on this day, (date). 

Correspondence Tables. Keeping a working list of the uses of different herbs, candles, crystals, ect. is a good reference tool for spellwork. 

Spells and Rituals. Write down your personal spells and rituals. Anything you come up with and practice can be put down in your Book of Shadows for future reference. 

Magical Recipes. Are you a kitchen witch? Make sure and write down all of your magical recipes! You never know when you might need to pull those out again!

What to learn more about witchcraft?

Check out the Witchcraft 101 Workshop and set the foundation of your magic!

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