The Tools of WitchCraft: The Blade

You’ll find a whole lot of people around the place who will give you THE LIST of tools that you absolutely, definitely MUST HAVE.

Akasha Witchcraft doesn’t work like that.

Our tools are minimum. Technically, the only tools you need are your mind, spirit and body – anything else is scene-setting stuff. But some tools do help you to focus your intent.

I want to talk today about the tool that many in Wicca call the “athame” but that we simply name the Blade.

What does a Blade look like?

A Blade can be any short sword, knife or cutting implement.

Some people use letter openers. Others use daggers.

I’ve several friends who used the instructions in Uncle Bucky’s Big Blue Book to make their own Blade from scratch, by heating a file on a stove top, then shaping and filing it down until it was sharp, and adding their own handle.

One friend uses an old, old butterknife that belonged to an ancestor which of course has special meaning for her.

What this means is you can use anything you like. Some people sharpen their Blades, but most don’t, as it makes working with the Blade and carrying it around (and storing it, if you have kids!) a whole lot safer.

My own Blade

My Blade is an old, old handmade dagger I picked up in a junk shop in Melbourne years and years ago.

It’s clearly modelled on the famous sword Colada, which is interesting as I have a psychic link to El Cid.

I found it at the end of a long day, nestled in the bottom of a dusty glass cabinet, and it cost me $30, which was exactly the amount I had in my wallet. I bought it on the spot, and it has been with me ever since.

From the moment I saw it I knew it belonged to me, and it’s the only tool that I have ever felt a strong affinity with; that I have ever felt is completely, totally mine.

It fits so snugly in my hand that it is like an extension of my body – so much so that I feel completely natural when using it.

As it should be.

If a tool feels “right”, you’ll know it right away. Feeling right has nothing to do with the cost of a tool, or where it came from, or its history. It’s something you just know.

A replica of Colada del Cid
And if a tool doesn’t work, forget it. Sell it, give it away, throw it in the bin – whatever feels right. But pass it on. You’re not meant to own it. It belongs to someone else. The connection isn’t there, and the tool will not channel your energy properly.

When I work with my Blade, either solo or in Circle, I am powerful. The power I can channel with my Blade scares people.

It’s like a bright light coursing through me – I can feel the energy pulsing, and others can see and feel it too. Everything connects; everything works, and the Blade enhances who I am, and what I can do.

What is a Blade used for?

A Blade is used to direct energy, and empower the user.

It literally cuts between one plane and the next, and can slice energy and guide it as the wielder chooses. It’s a very powerful tool – I’d argue it is more powerful than the Sword, also commonly used in Witchcraft – simply because it’s tip is so directly connected to your body. It’s a genuine extension of the body, whereas unless you’re truly familiar with the use of swords, a Sword can feel large and unwieldy.

A Blade is elegant, strong, fierce, connected to the elements of Fire and Air, and can easily channel both masculine and feminine energies. It works particularly well for strong personalities unafraid to use their power over themselves and others – when the purpose is positive, of course, and others have willingly given their permission. It is the tool of leaders, of High Priests and Priestesses.

I think you can probably tell that I adore using my Blade!

Where do I get a Blade?

Your Blade will find you.

Don’t go searching. Take your time. One thing you cannot do is go “Blade shopping” with a friend, and expect to turn up the ideal tool within a two hour window, all planned-for and scheduled. Blades have a will of their own, and do not work that way. The Blade is a Royal Tool, and they will come to you when you are ready, when you are strong enough, and at the right time in your learning curve.

That said, you can put out a call. In Circle, ask for your Blade to find you. Look around. Frequent shops that sell such tools. Look through family heirlooms. Open your mind, and don’t have a fixed idea of what your Blade will look like – it probably won’t resemble some Hollywood Camelot-esque ideal, all nice and shiny and pretty, with latin script along the flat.

When you find the right Blade, you will know. Trust me. And you’ll never want to use any other tool again.

Do I have to have a Blade?

Although I’ve talked up the power and strength of the Blade, you do not have to have one.

Some people find that a Blade simply doesn’t resonate with their personality. They are happier working directly with their fingertips, or a Wand. Some even work with a feather. They find a Blade too sharp and powerful, and prefer to “ease” energy around themselves, instead of cutting through it. They’re often the negotiators and calm, soothing personalities of the Pagan world.

A lot of women don’t like using a Blade either. They find it too masculine for their own energies, and simply don’t feel comfortable. That’s just fine – which tool you use should always be up to you.

Blades also have the disadvantage of transportation. When I travel, I don’t bring my Blade with me. Yes, I miss it, but it is not worth the risk of having it seized by customs. I use my fingertips instead, prefering no tool to the wrong one.

Finally, underage Pagans shouldn’t be given Blades. They simply don’t have the maturity and strength to use them properly yet. I believe that the Blade is a tool for mature adults; certainly not for kids, and probably not for young teens either.

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