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Shadow Ogham

“This forest is old. Very old. Full of memories…and anger. The trees are speaking to each other.” – Legolas The Two Towers

Working witchcraft with the magick of trees is, simply put, one of the most rewarding forms of magickal interaction that there is. Trees are ancient, wise, and the natural guardians of this world; they traverse realms, deeply rooted under the Earth and stretching far out into the air. They truly speak in a language all of their own; something which finally the scientific method is catching up to.

Trees have always been the most magical beings to the mind of this Witch; long before I discovered my personal calling to the Celtic Witchcraft path, I would cast circles using trees in place of the book described watchtowers for the Elements. I was never taught to do so by another, and I certainly never read this anywhere, but to me it was the most natural alternative.

A fragrant looming Pine tree for Earth and North, occasionally decorated with garlands of natural flowers or pinecones, a sweet-scented Cherry blossom highlighted with luminous pink petals for Air and East, a grand old Oak tree imposing and sheltering for Fire and South, and a delicate Weeping Willow dancing against the riverbank for Water and West.

Later, I discovered the Ogham and my life was changed again;

“Druids today use a particular method for communicating and remembering their wealth of tree-knowledge. This is known as the Ogham (which means ‘language’ and is pronounced o’um, or och’um). It consists of twenty-five simple strokes centred on or branching off a central line. It is similar in purpose, but separate in origin from the Nordic runes. The Ogham characters were inscribed on stones and probably on staves of wood.

Its origins are lost in the mists of time, and most of the existing inscriptions have only been dated to the fifth and sixth centuries, but whether originally Celtic or pre-Celtic, we may sense that it carries with it some of the very earliest of Druid wisdom. Amongst our sources of information about its use, we have from Ireland the twelfth century Book of Leinster, the fourteenth century Book of Ballymote, and O’Flaherty’s Ogygia (published in 1793). And from Scotland, transcribed from the oral tradition in the seventeenth century, we have The Scholar’s Primer. But it was the poet Robert Graves who, following in his grandfather’s footsteps as an Ogham expert, brought this arcane system into public awareness once again, with his publication of The White Goddess in 1948.“ – Druidry.Org

I documented my personal spiritual journey with the Ogham in some depth and is available here on video:

Last year, it occurred to me that in all my research and investigation into the magick of the Ogham, it never seemed to be mentioned about the nature of the shadow side of trees, and I was quite certain that trees were more than capable of being angry and even menacing, when they had suffered mistreatment at the hands of human beings; having spent quite some time with a very disgruntled Yew tree, I can personally vouch for their feelings of annoyance at being torn at, disrespected, and vandalised.

Going forward there only seemed to be one solution; to create the content I felt was sorely absent, to experience and express the balance within tree magick; following the regular guideline for Tree magick and looking at the roots of those things; the shadow aspect of each tree, the gift of real healing that each Ogham could provide when dealing with the raw and sometimes damaging emotional, physical and mental states.

Trees after all reach deep underground; are comfortable and grounded in those shadows. To ignore this aspect of tree magick seemed to me to be only appreciating the leafy green boughs and hindering our understanding as Witches and Healers.

So we will start anew, soon, with Silver Birch…

Come with me, Let us begin, A Journey down dark paths, that grow from within…

Many Blessings Starlets,


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