📚 Weekly Witchy CHALLENGE - History of Magick

Merry meet to all!

Thanks again to everyone who joined in for last week’s Weekly Witchy Challenge - Powerful Protection :shield:

With strong defenses in place, now is a great time to sit back and look back upon how far we’ve come in witchy history.

The idea for this week’s challenge was suggested by the insightful @Siofra and is…

History of Magick Spells8 Challenge

:books: :face_with_monocle: The History of Magick :woman_mage: :scroll:

Many of us are familiar with modern stereotypes of witches- the good, bad, and the ugly. But what brought society to view witches this way? Why do those not involved in the Craft believe these stereotypes?

The challenge this week encourages you to peer back in time and explore the history of magick. Whether you pursue real witches or those accused, the development of Wicca, pagan traditions, or more- it’s all about exploring the past.

Hopefully, by exploring what happened in history, we can gain a deeper appreciation and understanding of the magickal communities and practices we are blessed with today! :sparkles:

This week’s challenge is all about exploring a topic from the vast history of magick.

Are you ready? It’s… CHALLENGE TIME! :bellhop_bell:

From Wikipedia: Renaissance Magic

STEP 1 : Peer Into the Past :crystal_ball:

There are many ways you might approach this challenge. Here are few general suggestions to help you get started!

:exclamation: For anyone not aware, the history of magick and witchcraft (especially more recent history) can be quite dark- please consider studying grim events only if you are in a secure state of mind.

If you do not feel comfortable researching upsetting events rest assured that there are plenty of positive role model figures and happy occasions as well that you might choose :blush:

From PBS: Circe

:mage: Learn about a magickal figure from history

Consider learning about a person (real or legendary) who made a mark on witchcraft through the ages- whether for good or bad.

Some possibilities include…

Aliester Crowley
Scott Cunningham
Gerald Gardner
The Sanderson Sisters

From The Scotsman: Traditional Beltane Fire Festival

:fire: Study an event in the history of magick

Witchy history is full of events that made their mark in the books! From pagan rituals to powerful moments, consider looking into an event.

Some events you might consider include…

The Salem Witch Trials
Witchcraft Act of 1735
History of the 8 Sabbat Celebrations
Founding of the Museum of Witchcraft and Magic
Traditional events still celebrated today

From InsideHook: Salem, MA

:stonehenge: Research a historical magickal place

While magick can be cast anywhere, there are some locations that have earned a reputation for having magickal ties.

A few magickal places you might look into include…

Village of Lily Dale
Museum of Witchcraft and Magic

From Summary: 10 Famous Wizards from History

:raised_hands: …And More!

The history of magic is a whole library waiting for you to explore it. Feel free to pursue and study magickal history in a way that resonates with your practice! :blush:

From the New Yorker: Famous Historical Witch Hunts

STEP 1 : Share Your Experience :writing_hand:

Click here for notes about challenge inclusitivity

All witches are welcome to join the challenge by practicing magick in line with the current theme. For those who don’t feel comfortable sharing, it is absolutely okay to follow along with the challenge but keep your entry personal. Feel free to join in spirit and do what feels most comfortable for you! :blush:

That being said, please know that if you would like to receive a prize and a shout-out, you will have to share your experience with the forum.

Please share:

  • About your experience exploring the history of magic

For your entry to be counted, please write about your experience in the comments below and/or create a new thread in the forums.

Note : If you choose to create a new thread, please tag the challenge by adding a hyperlink back to this post so that I can easily find it- thank you! :bowing_woman:

:exclamation: This challenge will close in 6 DAYS :exclamation:

To join in, please share your experience by:

Tuesday, October 5th at 7:00 AM CET (Central European Time Zone)
( 2021-10-05T05:00:00Z )

For their efforts, all participants will receive a special shout-out and a small prize! :gift:

Acknowledgments will be given in a Props and Presents Post that will appear in the forums on Tuesday.

After the challenge closes, you are still very welcome to post but please be aware that no additional prizes will be given.

:gift_heart: :gift: :gift_heart:

From History Daily: The Origin of Crystal Balls

A warm reminder that all challenges are designed to be very open- everyone is encouraged to participate in a way that honors and reflects their unique practice :open_book:

If you have any doubts about if something is acceptable to post or say, please double-check with the Forum FAQ and/or reach out to your friendly Moderator Team .

And for those new to challenges- welcome! :heart: Know that the goal of these activities is to help you further diversify and strengthen your abilities and to bring together the Spells8 forum family to inspire and support one another in creative ways :hugs:

From the Irish Times: Ireland’s Most Famous Witches

Thanks to the witches that came before,
Who fought against hardship and blame.
Their struggles allow us to stand proud today
That we may continue to carry their flame.

Blessed be! :books::sparkles:


This is perfect timing as I’ve just picked up this book from a local discount book shop!


Oh wow! I didn’t think it would be a challenge so soon! I’m excited for this one, not just because I am going to Salem next month. I like to know what I’m getting into & I remember reading Scott Cunningham & of course the Salem Witch Trials & I had learned a little bit about how witchcraft came to America. So this will be good for me I think.

I have been working a lot on my family tree & so far most of the family was colonial settlers in PA (who originate from the UK) from my mother’s side & my father’s side originates from Italy & Ireland. I’m kind of a mutt according to my DNA, but the biggest segment is 30%+ Ireland.

So yesterday I went to my neurologist & she said to me, “Krissie that is a lovely Brigid’s Cross. Did you know that’s what it was?” We had a little chat about the 1 around my neck & that I had made one with the rushes for my room. I found out that St. Brigid was from the area of Ireland that my neurologist is from. It’s funny because for the last, maybe 5 years I have seen her I could never place her accent. I knew it was from the UK area, but I couldn’t put my finger on where. As soon as we were talking about Brigid, it all made sense! So I’m looking forward to going back there for my next treatment.

I have some ideas but I’m not sure exactly how I want to tackle this challenge. Thank you so much for bringing it to life so soon!

@IrisW that is an amazing purchase that falls right in line with the challenge. I look forward to seeing what you learn & share for the challenge. Have a great day!


Nice book. I am looking to buy a few more books but at the moment I am reading The history of Paganism…


@TheMuslimWitch looks like a great book for this challenge too. I look forward to your entry also!


Thanks😊 I would love to visit Salem it would be very educational to see how times have changed and the unfortunate events that went down there….


I went last year & we went to a mock trial & got to go under the house we were in to see the jails that were used during those events. I love the old architecture & streets that are there. This year we are going on a history walk that you can do on your phone & it plays bits of history & events that have occurred in different spots. The whole town is really great & you can feel the energy as you walk through.

When I was younger we went to the re-enactment of the big trials in the center of what was the town. We walked around to the different buildings too. I was in high school when we went that time & that’s all I remember from it.


This challenge is absolutely fantastic. Wonderful suggestion @Siofra !
There are so many misguided beliefs about who and what Witches are. It’s so important to know our history!


Great challenge since I’m such a history nerd!
I’ve been thinking of researching Saint Joan of Arc. She wasn’t a pagan, but she was accused of witchcraft. Some say that she was schizophrenic while others believe that she actually communicated with angels.


@Siofra ~ How cool that you’re going to Salem!! I would love to go someday! Also, I just love the synchronicity involved with you and your doctor speaking! I have always been drawn to Brighid myself. My mom always used to say, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” The fact that you’ve been seeing her for five years but only talked about it now reiterated that point to me. I love when synchronicities occur. They show that we’re on the right path. :heart:


@IrisW ~ Excellent looking book! I’m sure it will be invaluable in this challenge! :grinning:


@TheMuslimWitch ~ A perfect book for this challenge! I love the cover!


This is a great topic. I truly hope I can make a submission this week I’ve missed the community and can’t wait to get back to it :slight_smile:


Great Challenge Idea @Siofra and @TheTravelWitch for constructing it.
I think I will dive into the history of The Sanderson Sisters. Hocus Pocus is one of my family’s favorite movies. :first_quarter_moon_with_face: :new_moon_with_face: :last_quarter_moon_with_face: :jack_o_lantern:


I’ve been kind of fascinated by Doreen Valiente for awhile. Challenge seems like a good time to dig a little deeper.


Ohhh this comes at a time when I’ve been feeling the ancestor work and digging into the history of some things :thinking:


The murder of children for magic (An Albino Holocaust.)


Warning, systematic murder of children. Do not read if you are offended.
This was an uncomfortable article to read and digest, but it needed to be heard.
Some of the ancient African Tribes believe quite firmly in magic. I’d like to address a horrific practice taking place for thousands of years, up to and including today. Tragically, Albino magic is still being practiced, although illegal. The reasons for this monstrous practice?

Misunderstanding and Racial Discrimination


Discriminations against albino people goes hundreds, if not thousands of years. Even today, they cannot completely stop this trend. In 1892, explorer Charles Staniland Wake from Chicago traveled to Africa. He studied various tribes and their culture, and then published a book, Memoirs. Once during a hunt, he was shocked by the meeting with the albino. He admitted that meeting with another white man over a year in Africa scared him. Local explained that albinos for them are demonic creatures and it is rarely possible to see an albino who has survived to an older age. Usually they are killed in infancy

Body parts for profit

It is hard to imagine how someone can be so cruel to children, but selling body parts of albinos to shamans can be quite profitable.

Exhumed bodies

Some shaman actually dig up albino graves to use the bodies for their magic. If confronted by police, they simply bribe them and they leave.

Special schools and camps

Since albino children are too dangerous to go to regular schools, many of them never leave their homes. Those who want to get an education attend special boarding schools. In extreme cases, they can visit summer camps to meet with albinos like them. However, many parents simply abandon their children in boarding schools and never return.

There is an old superstition that the birth of an albino child entails a curse in the house. Parents want to quickly abandon them without resorting to murder. These camps were created after the government realized the need for its intervention to prevent the killing of so many albinos. High fences are locked every night. Security guards monitor security. Such schools save the lives of albino children, but they also isolate them from the outside world. Nothing is being done to help society accept them as people. When they become teenagers, they can no longer stay at school due to their age, and are forced to figure out how to live in a world that hates them .

Dedicated to poverty

Since many people are superstitious about albinos, they shun society and cannot find work. Many adult albinos are forced to depend on other family members.

In RT’s documentary Fear and Loathing: An African Albino Survives Tanzania, 50-year-old albino Said he was attacked and his arm was chopped off. His sister allowed him to “live” with her, but allowed him to sleep only on the street, hiding with a mosquito net
Skin cancer and aids

According to a study by the European Organization for the Study of Cancer, African albinos usually form tumors on the face and neck. In the absence of proper treatment, tumors become malignant, leading to early death. It was also found that African albinos often do not live up to 30 years.
Worse, the “magic abilities” of albinos have been rumored that if a person with AIDS enters into an intimate relationship with an albino, then he will recover. This led to the fact that young albino girls were caught and raped, simultaneously infecting AIDS

Albino island

Since albinos are often rejected by society, many of them decided to create their own community on the small island of Ukerwe off the coast of Tanzania

However, life on the island does not guarantee security. The big city of Mwanza is three hours away. Albino Alfred Kapole was attacked on Ukreve. On the island he was brought up by parents who wanted to give him a better life. Capone realized that until everyone around them understood that they were not magical, they would never be safe anywhere. He moved to the city of Mwanza and created the organization “Albinism Society of Tanzania”. On the wall of the organization’s office, he wrote, “We do not melt in the sun. Do not fade. We live and die like all other people. ”

Political motives

Many will be surprised how such a terrible practice still exists today, because there should be many educated people in the government. Tanzanian journalist Eric Cabender noted that the number of killings of albinos increases dramatically during the presidential election. It has been recorded that many politicians in Africa still believe in magic, and will pay shaman sorcerers for spells that will lead them to victory. Also, politicians are the few who can pay such huge money for Africa for bodies

Therefore, it is not surprising that if this theory is true, then politicians will not protect albinos in any way. The UN and the Human Rights Organization needed to intervene. Jakaya Kikvet, who was the president of Tanzania in 2015, said this disgusting and shameful practice for the country. She agreed to the arrest of the shamans, which not a single president had done before her

Villagers fight back

While there are many superstitious Africans who believe that albinos should die, there are many educated people who find this terrible. Since the government is very corrupt, people are literally getting away with numerous killings. Many young activists have taken matters into their own hands and are now hunting for these killers.+

In 2015, a rumor spread that 58-year-old Jane Fayda Bakari was a witch who paid for killing albinos for spells. People were reimbursed and broke into the Bakari house in the middle of the night. More than 200 angry villagers dragged her out into the street. They chopped her body into pieces while Moses’ husband stood and looked at it. They burned her body and then burned the house. The husband had to escape with three children. He later claimed that the wife was not a shaman and that activists killed an innocent woman.

Unfortunately, since shamans hide their true identity, the fault often lies with older women. They fall under the stereotype of sorcerers. In a world where villages live, wondering which of them is a serial killer, residents attack as soon as at least some evidence appears.

By the way, we want to advise you to look at the most beautiful witches from the world of cinema in our article


For centuries, the leaders of the communities, the police and justice of Tanzania have done very little to stop the killing of albinos. Finally, in 2015, after a statement by the United Nations and community activists on these issues, the government stepped up and did what needed to be done many years ago. They arrested 225 so-called “healers, healers,” who practiced without a license, as well as sorcerers who paid bounty hunters for parts of the body of albinos.+

During raids on shaman dwellings, they found monkey tails, lion skin, warthog teeth, and other parts of animals that they mixed and forced their customers to consume.

This is a huge victory, because now buyers of body parts are sitting behind bars, and people will not have such motivation to hunt albinos. And any shaman who has not yet been caught will think twice before revealing himself. Unfortunately, many sorcerers still practice in other African countries


https://ug.iiug2017.org/6747-top-10-tragic-facts-about-albino-people-in-africa.htmlThis text will be blurred


Thank you for your knowledge Siofra
I had no idea


What a great experience, I am glad you got to experience the trials. What an eye-opening experience!
Thanks for sharing!

I wanted to share about a Goddess that has caught my attention. Her name is Circe and she was known for her Sorcery. She was also known for her knowledge of potions :test_tube: and :herb: herbs. She gets a bad image because she uses her true self-revelatory spell and she turned men into :pig_nose: pigs. She is also Hekate’s daughter in relationship with plant pharmakeia and was more spiritual. She was known as a misfit and she was known as the original witch. In the book Entering Hekate’s Garden Cyndi Brannen writes “Circe his human voice was particularly troublesome for her adoptive family and this may be the origin of the tradition that witches voice is different from those of others”
People see her as this horrible Witch but I think she just learned she had powers and she had lots of problems. In her isolation, she learned of the green world to help her with her problems.

In history, men didn’t treat women right and they still think they are not equals! Anyway, women didn’t have a voice at all! She was the voice for all women. she stood up and had a voice and she had the courage and she was independent. Sometimes I wish I had her power to stand up. I think in society women have come a long way and we are still struggling with many power struggles men infringe on us. I was brought up to always obey the man. She was portrayed as a madwoman turning men into pigs :pig_nose: well maybe they deserved it? But just food for thought :thought_balloon: lol :laughing: I don’t mean to have any gender biases I know men are witches too I just was interpreting the story to history and the times when women had no rights!
May this harm non
Blessed be!
Here is a clip of Circe’s story
Mythology of Circe
Short story of Circe



(I couldn’t resist… here’s a Spells8 meme for the coven :face_with_hand_over_mouth: )

Every Wednesday I take a look at the challenge to-list and unless there’s something already in the works, it seems like I can’t help but gravitate towards challenge suggestions offered by coven members.

You are all so clever with your ideas! There have been some really amazing ones offered that practically design themselves! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: So many thanks to @Siofra and everyone who has shared challenge ideas :partying_face:


Wow, @IrisW- I don’t think you could have found a more perfect book! :star_struck: And it sounds like it was a thrifty find too- nice catch :+1: Can’t wait to hear your thoughts about it, I hope it’s a great read for you!

That’s so cool that your neurologist knew about the Brigid’s Cross and had a personal connection to it, @Siofra! It really is a small world, there are connections and ties everywhere :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: Wishing you a blessed trip to Salem, and I’m looking forward to seeing how you’ll pursue the challenge! :raised_hands:

Ohhhhh another great book, perfect for the challenge @TheMuslimWitch! That looks like a very promising book- I can’t wait to hear what you think of it! Enjoy your reading! :blush::two_hearts:

Absolutely agreed, @Sarah29- history is not just interesting, it’s important too! :books::sparkles:

Ohhh I’ve heard a bit about Joan of Arc, but don’t know much about her other than she was a powerful woman in history. Sounds like a great figure to research and learn about- enjoy, @Kasandra! :raised_hands: :crossed_swords:

We missed you too, @JasmineTheBlueJ! Welcome back and feel free to join in the challenge- you are always very welcome here :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

It’s a pleasure, @Rowan! And yesssss Hocus Pocus is a classic! :partying_face: While a lot of the movie was designed for the screen, it was partly filmed in Salem and drew on some local history there- I’m sure you’ll find some interesting things about the interesting Sanderson Sisters! :broom: :grin:

I can’t say I know much about Doreen Valiente, @Valen- I’m looking forward to hearing what you find! Blessed studies :open_book: :blush:

Answer the call, @MeganB! :grin: Enjoy your ancestor and history work- have fun with it! :sparkles:

Wow, @Garnet- I hadn’t heard about the ‘Albino Holocaust’ before, that was very dark indeed (thank you for using the protective blur :pray:). I don’t know much about Shamanism in Africa, but from what you’ve shared, it sounds like albino people face really extreme challenges there. My heart aches reading about it :cry:

I’m so glad you looked into Circe, @Jeannie! :heart_eyes: I found about Her a while back while researching an herb (‘Moly’, which may be Lily-of-the-Valley- which was the herb she used to turn men into pigs :pig2: ). Many different sources debate whether she was a sorceress, Goddess, alchemist, or something else- truly a woman of legend! :sparkles: Thanks for sharing your research on Circe :raised_hands: :heart: