Wand or athame

When I first started “practicing” witchcraft I used an athame because I thought that was what you were supposed to do. I thought I needed to have all the tools and arrange them and then read the rituals word for word. I realized later in life that I didn’t have to do any of that. I didn’t need tools or special items at all.

When I got back to being more organic in my witchcraft I guess you would say I also changed to using a wand. In my coven I wasn’t the one who used the athame to begin with but I did some changing and didn’t have the interest in using the athame. I think it’s the scariest tool to outsiders as well because it is a dagger or knife and they don’t understand. My sister found my athame and freaked out when I was 16 and she was 12. She went and told my mom, “Amy has a knife in her room!” This makes us laugh years later and she knows it wasn’t an actual knife but a way to direct energy.

The athame is made of steel or metal and usually I avoid wearing a lot of jewelry in the circle anyways because it doesn’t feel natural to me. The athame is supposed to represent fire and direct energy into the circle casting. The wand is to represent air and to me seems like a natural item to use in casting the circle and calling or inviting the presence of the elements.

When I was forming my second circle/coven several years ago the four of us found that we all favor the wand over the athame. None of us have used an athame to cast the circle for years. I like the feeling of the wand in your hand especially if it’s one I made. The end is a crystal and the energy works out just fine. The natural element of the wand is wonderful I think and the use of natural items within the circle is also something I favor.

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4 thoughts on “Wand or athame

  1. I find it interesting, and made a similar discovery when looking back on my own Path. I currently do not use wand or atheme (and rarely do “formal circle-craft” either).
    When I did practice that sort of ritual, I’d read all about athames, but never found one that worked. Then I tried a wand like the one you show, a humble stick I found with a crystal I glued on. Worked a treat.

    My theory here, (and I do NOT mean to imply this is correct or superior to other methods!!) is that when first learning to direct energy in this manner, Fire is more readily felt/experienced and thus an athame might feel more comfortable/empowering/useful. As one gets a better understanding and practice with subtle energies, a wand (air?) is all that is necessary, and feels more comfortable and less overpowered? For me at least, it was somewhat like learning to paint. Big broad kid-brushes were easy to work with, and after a while, more detailed sketches can be done with smaller brushes. For bold prints (powerful energies), the big Brush would still work, of course, but wasn’t necessary for day to day ‘doodling’.

    It could simply also be a more earth-centric focus to your own workings. Any Athame is “refined” by it’s very nature, taking on the ForgeFire of it’s construction, and you may simply also feel more attuned to “unprocessed” materials like wood and bone and earth-forged crystal?

    I’d be interested to hear any further thoughts on why an Athame doesn’t feel ‘favored’ for you? Navel-gazing is fun sometimes, isn’t it?! :)

  2. What a gorgeous wand! You are so talented. :) I loved your “dagger” story! I have an athame, maybe I will write about it. It’s very special to me. I may have to use it to cut my ties to my past, it’s like they’re drowning me and I can’t seem to stop it.

    Oh yes, the Olympics. Goddess help me, I watched it last night and was brought to tears over and over. It’s like a Siren’s song, driving me mad. Yes, there is a good chance one day with my husband’s job we will go back but he has been having issues that seem to prevent it from happening which again, drive me mad. Did you like the look of BC? There is no place I have been that is more beautiful. I went to the tropics once and said, wow, my old neighbourhood is nicer than this. I had no idea I was spoiled rotten. Ugh!

    Thanks for asking, I really appreciate it so much.

  3. Really curious: I’ve never used the athame, always having a wand instead. I have nothing against athames, but I feel more comfortable with wands maybe being myself an Air witch (Gemini), this is more natural as well. But when I say wand I actually mean a simple branch that I remove the leaves from it. I never decorated with anything my wands, though I have already seen some gorgeous ones (like yours in the photo). Since I moved to mom’s, I haven’t found any branch to keep at my altar yet. Inthe right time it always end up in my hands, though.

    Kisses and love from us.

  4. if my father find my athame (its a beatiful knife ha ha ) ad my tarot deck he freaks out too.
    so i hide it very good ha ha

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