Many times the hardest things to overcome are the barriers that we put up for ourselves. Beginning to walk to Wiccan path may start out as intriguing to a person until they begin reading how other practicing witches go about their rituals and spellwork. Often just reading some of the *must haves* and laundry lists of items to gather can make anyone feel too overwhelmed to consider taking the first step in performing a ritual. Notice I said ritual and not spell. Think honoring and not conjuring. More on this later.
Is it imperative to have the right tools and surroundings in order for someone to truly be practicing Wicca? Will having the most expensive or decorative chalice or altar cloth or athame make someone a stronger or more worthy witch? Absolutely not! Tools are props. They are the items that help focus or soothe our psyche in order to remain focused on the purpose of our being in this moment. For each of us, the items that become most meaningful are the most powerful.
So much discussion in books, boards, email lists and in face to face conversation seems to revolve around magic. There are more books that appeal to the masses because they are filled with step by step instructions of what to gather, what to wear and exactly what to say in order to cast a Love spell or Get money. This is offensive on many levels as these types of dialog only further the idea that Wicca is all about hocus pocus and not a legitimate religion or spiritual experience.
The act of gathering a few, special items to illustrate your desired outcome or to honor the turning of the wheel is a far cry from a must have list of special items in order to even begin.
The most powerful thing that anyone can do for themselves when learning about the Pagan path would be to read about the history of the Craft. Listen to the things that call to you when their name is mentioned or when an idea rings true. These are the areas that should be focused upon. These are the magical items that should be in a witch's repertoire.
On a personal note, lest anyone come away with the idea that I think all tools are worthless, I certainly don't. I have things that are special and powerful for me. My BOS for example, it was handcrafted for me years ago. I often hold it in my hands in times of unrest. Just having that history, that growth and knowledge in my hands can calm my spirit and allow me to listen.
I also have special runes that I work with. These were made by me and have traveled all over the country, through years of my spiritual awakening. When I first made them, it was something that I felt moved to do. I didn't use them for many years but carry them and handle them, sort them and learn about them I did.
The most powerful items that are important to being a witch are those things that feel important. They are very often things that are found and speak to their finder on a deeper level than a pretty picture in a catalog.
What items are important to you? Share it in our forum if you wish.It would be wonderful to see real life examples from a variety of paths.