Sign Your Name!
When I was in art school, I was asked why I signed my name in the same way on each drawing. The answer was twofold. First, I sign my work in recognition of the responsibility I have for everything I release, and second, my signature is a representation of my own energy infused into everything I do. Artistically as well as magically, my body of work is diverse, but my signature gives each piece a common thread to bind them together.
I’m sure you’re wondering what this has to do with magic and casting spells; let me explain. One of the benefits of the internet is that it gives us unbelievable access to things like spells and rituals; conversely, it’s easier than ever to take shortcuts by getting spells from the net and avoid doing our due diligence in terms of understanding and planning for the outcomes. These spells have a high failure rate, but this has less to do with the spell itself (remember, what works for me might not work for you) and more to do with the limited connection the caster has with the spell.
Am I telling you that you must write all your own spells? That you should never use spells you get from the internet? Not at all! Let me put it this way for you. When you get a recipe, do you add your own flair to it? Do you tweak it to fit your specific needs and tastes? Should you do any less when you’re practicing magic? Take the spells you find as an example, as a foundational structure, and then add to them.
Writing your own spells from start to finish is definitely something I advocate, simply because this makes it more likely to work for YOU because your “fingerprints” are all over it. It’s possible to get the same results using someone else’s spell but only if you adapt that spell to your own style. Rewrite the incantation using words and imagery that resonate with you. Listen to your intuition; pay attention to your feelings! Switch ingredients if you feel something else would work better. I have an affinity for rosemary; it grows in my garden and its energy reaches out to me so I include it in many of my spells. Rosemary can be substituted for a variety of herbs, and I do so often when that subtle shift of energy feels right.
In each of the spells I’ve put onto Familiar Territory, I try to stress that you need to make the spell your own. If I call the quarters or cast a circle in the spell, that doesn’t mean that you have to do it the way I do or that you even have to do it. Sometimes I will give incantation examples but it’s not required for you to use the words I did. Take each spell you find and add to it so that it feels right for you.
Whether you are drawing, cooking, or casting, infuse what you’re doing with your own style and flair, with your own energy. Take responsibility for the outcomes of your efforts, and always sign your name!