All craft people are known by the tools that they use. Carpenters use hammers and saws; a blacksmith uses a forge, anvil and a variety or hammers, tongs and punches. If you see a craft person carrying tools on the way to work you immediately know what trade was chosen. Practitioners of the Art of Wicca have their tools as well. Our primary tools are the staff, wand, and athame and if you saw me carrying my tools you would know that I’m not a carpenter, plumber or blacksmith. You would see me with a wand sticking out of my pocket, my shaman’s bag over my shoulder, an athame stuck into my belt and a staff in my left hand.
Wands and staffs are easy to identify, and just by looking at them you have an idea of their use. Harry Potter movies popularized the use of wands and now you can purchase look-alike Harry Potter wands just about anywhere, including my favorite bookstore/coffee bar. For some reason the athame is not as well know, maybe it’s just not as photogenic so it doesn’t get many leading roles in movies today.
The use of the athame or magical knife is quite old. It has been reported that in medieval times a knife with a white hilt was used for all common purposes, and a knife with a black hilt was used for drawing magic circles and compelling spirits. I carry a pocket knife for mundane uses. My athame is consecrated and set apart for ritual uses. Even though magick embraces all of life so everything that I do uses magick and is magick I still restrict the use of my athame to ritual; for cutting through the air and for projecting and directing energy.
I recently received a new athame and I want to share an image of it before I consecrate it: here it is:
Michael Ferrell, CEO and Tech Wizard (including knife making) of Witch School recently completed it and it arrived today. This is a heavy and well balanced tool made of copper. I’m excited to give it a try especially because of the conductive properties of copper (all the wiring in your house is copper for a reason).