So, I had decided that, with the start of spring, I would start my book of shadows. A Book of Shadows is simply a journal in which to collect all of your magickal knowledge and experiences. It`s a good way to keep a record to refer to later.
There are so many different variations of BOSs. Some people use loose-leaf paper and keep it all in a binder to be better organized (this way you can choose categories and organize accordingly). Other people simply use a blank journal and write in that.
While I like the idea of an organized BOS, I myself tend not to be as organized as I`d like, so in some ways it made more sense to just go for a regular journal. I wasn`t sure which kind I wanted. If you search Amazon, for example, there are many kinds, most of them pretty. Like this one that I debated:
It doesn`t have to say “Book of Shadows” on it in order for it to become one. I happen to like small leather-ish bound books. If you want to see even more options, just type “Blank Book of Shadows” in the search box and tons of stuff will come up. If you don`t add in `Blank`, books about how to write a BOS will also come up.
In the end, I decided against it, because at the hundred yen store I found this little journal, and, though cliche, I love the saying on the front.
Various other things I`ve read said that you should probably get a pen\pencil to use with your BOS that you don`t use with anything else. So I got a cute two pack of black and white pens. (Hundred yen store for the win! Although I did find out that both of them write in black ink…)
Ok, you might be saying. So now I`ve got a blank book, and sure I`ll grab a pen from the dollar store. What exactly do I write in it?
The very first thing that should go into any BOS should be a book blessing. I`ve heard several variations before, and most of them sound pretty good. One I`ve heard often is:
These words herein are mine along
Fashioned deep inside my bones
Each question, thought, and quote you see
Are all reflections of what is me
So resist the urge to take this book
And read it in some private nook
For its magick isn`t blind
And I will know you`ve touched what`s mine.
Many people on the internet have used this and claimed it as theirs, but I think the original place I saw it was in Silver Ravenwolf`s
Personally, that one always got on my nerves a little because it doesn`t actually rhyme the whole way through. My other, personal problem with it is that it warns away all but the writer. However, one of the purposes of a BOS is to pass along information to the next generation, in which case, warning everyone else away seems just a little silly. But if you can`t think of your own book blessing and want to use this one, go for it.
I didn`t use that one, however. I wrote my own. While I certainly use spells and blessings that I find other places that others have written, for something like a book blessing, I felt it was better to make up my own. Ah, and that reminds me…in your BOS as you collect spells and things…make sure you cite credit. That makes it so that fifty years down the road, you can remember where that information came from in the first place. Plagiarizing–claiming a bit of work as your own when you had nothing to do with its creation–creates negative karma.
That being said, you can use my book blessing if you choose to, but please don`t claim it as your own work. I rather like the rhyming couplets for a book blessing, so that`s what I used. This is the blessing written in the front of my BOS:
Beware if you`ve not the right to look
To see what`s written in this book.
Magick is contained in here
coming from both far and near.
Magick is a personal power
Growing stronger by the hour
Changing fates and protecting the Earth
Helping witches` discover their worth
Goodwill and changes that can take root
With willpower, determination and magick to boot.
Magick is not a game for fun,
Nor is it right for everyone;
Try it that way and your words will unravel
something you can never get back no matter the travel
So if you`ve not the right to look
And still you dare to read this book
Just one thing to keep in mind
Karma always responds in kind.
by Skylance K`Dragonwing