Solanaceae in the Garden of Shadow | Coby Michael Ward

Solanaceae: The Witches of the Plant World There are no plants more specifically associated with Witchcraft and the Devil than those that belong to the family of Nightshade, the Solanaceae. In Latin, Solanaceae means “to soothe,” and they are valued for their pain-relieving and sedative properties. This category consists of the infamous plants of the medieval … Continue reading Solanaceae in the Garden of Shadow | Coby Michael Ward

Plant Spirit Familiars | Coby Michael Ward

For millennia mankind has turned to the natural world for answers to the mysteries of life. The laws governing all things both seen and unseen can be understood through observation and interaction with nature. Our lives are inextricably linked to the natural world no matter how sterile and far removed our lives have become. We … Continue reading Plant Spirit Familiars | Coby Michael Ward

Saturn, Pluto and the Plague Times | Coby Michael Ward

Saturn- The Greater Malefic Saturn rules structure, restriction, hard work and life purpose.  While the planetary influence is usually viewed from a negative point of view; it is also about boundaries and regathering our personal resources.  Oftentimes life can leave our energy scattered and our boundaries broken.  We need a strong container to hold ourselves … Continue reading Saturn, Pluto and the Plague Times | Coby Michael Ward

Connecting with the Familiar Spirit | Coby Michael Ward

Spirits of a Familiar Nature What is a familiar spirit? Modern Paganism often concerns itself with the gods and goddesses of ancient pantheons.  The deities of Ancient Greece and Rome, Egypt; Celtic deities and the divinities of the Norse and Germanic traditions, to name just a few.  Many practitioners of Modern Paganism and some Wiccan … Continue reading Connecting with the Familiar Spirit | Coby Michael Ward

Saturnian Melancholy & Daemonic Inspiration | Coby Michael Ward

  Saturnian Melancholy Lethargic, uninspired, consumed by one's own thoughts; the melancholic mind is a labyrinth.  Its winding passageways conceal deeper and darker holes to fall into.  That jaded depressiveness characteristic of poets and artists who have deemed the priorities of the material world to be transparent, two dimensional and unimportant; what seems like a … Continue reading Saturnian Melancholy & Daemonic Inspiration | Coby Michael Ward

Illumination, Inspiration, and Imbolc | Coby Michael Ward

  For years I considered Imbolc, just another extra holy day to be observed.  It didn’t hold a lot of personal resonance with me, and this can feel true for many individuals when it comes to the pagan holy days or witches’ Sabbats.  Simply reading about the day’s history and traditional observances, learning the myth … Continue reading Illumination, Inspiration, and Imbolc | Coby Michael Ward

Spellcrafting with Baneful Herbs | Coby Michael Ward

  What are Baneful Herbs? First and foremost baneful herbs are known for their potential for poisoning.  They contain powerful chemicals known as alkaloids that have a powerful effect on human physiology.  When used properly they are some of our most powerful medicines, but in the wrong hands; as history has shown, they can be … Continue reading Spellcrafting with Baneful Herbs | Coby Michael Ward

Baneful Herbs in Magical Practice | Coby Michael Ward

Using Baneful Herbs in Magic With their infamous reputations and prominent place in myth and folklore, the Baneful herbs begin to seem more like mischievous magical creatures appearing throughout history in folktales and first-hand accounts.  They are powerful in their chemistry and in their occult power, but they are still plants.  The deadly nightshade grows … Continue reading Baneful Herbs in Magical Practice | Coby Michael Ward

Samhain: Honoring Ancestors of Craft and Tradition | Coby Michael Ward

Samhain, the season of the witch, is a time for us to honor the powers that underlie our Craft.  The hidden powers behinds the scenes, guiding our movements and our inspiration.  The Dead guide us; they are present when we weave our magic.  Those who have laid the foundations for our Great Arte, fertilizing our … Continue reading Samhain: Honoring Ancestors of Craft and Tradition | Coby Michael Ward

Samhain in the Devil’s Garden | Coby Michael Ward

All Hallows Eve is quickly approaching.  The darkness is creeping closer every day.  You can feel the cold grip of the coming winter slithering its way back up from its yearly resting place deep in the Underworld.  The excitement and anticipation on both sides of the veil are tangible.  It is during this time of … Continue reading Samhain in the Devil’s Garden | Coby Michael Ward