The Hekate book list I created has been updated yet again with new, upcoming or books not usually promoted:
I have updated this list to include new or upcoming books or ones I feel should be included in Hekate related books 😀
Some (if not most) devotees, priests, witches, magicians and practitioners of Hekate love to find out more about her from a historical, modern, personal, religious and magical point of view. They love to read and research Hekate, and therefore tend to devour everything they can find, which is written and discussed on Her.
For me personally, I like to collect books on Hekate for my personal library. I do this so I can understand academic’s research and study on Hekate as well as individual’s personal experience and interpretation on her. I love to read how Hekate manifests for others who have a deep interest, love and respect for Hekate. Although I don’t necessarily agree or resonate with everything I read, I find it expands my perspective and knowledge about her in a more well rounded way.
Over the last few years I have noticed more books being written on Hekate which can…
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Many create resolutions at the beginning of the new year. These resolutions can include getting rid of a bad habits or introducing a good one. Resolutions tend to be created and promises made – which usually (if not always) fall by the wayside.
This is why I as I have described before I personally do not create resolutions. What I like to do is set intentions of what I want to undergo for the year with the focus being on what new “experience” I want to learn or immerse myself in.
Last year what quite an intense one and as such most of my time was spent on survival and self-care.
My focus for the year is listed below in bold, whilst my achievements are listed beneath with supporting lists, links or photographs.
Read and re-read books which inspire and/or move me:
I didn’t read as many books as I usually do due to spending a lot of time reading academic papers on Academia as well as subscribing to Medium and reading various articles there by independent writers.
Support more artists creating hand-made/self-published items born from their hard work, research, study and/or imagination:
Support a charity I resonate with:
Visit somewhere I haven’t been before which has a spirit of place:
Dromana Beach (been there as a child but not as an adult).
Mornington peninsular (visited various places of the area).
Complete a workshop/course which is connected to my interests, passions and causes I like to support:
Handwriting Course (Cursive)
Self Publishing Workshop
Create something magical which feeds and inspires my practice:
Painting with acrylics – submitted and accepted to Gallery Exhibit 5 x 9 (painting sold)
Photography of Spirit of Place – submitted and accepted to Optica 2020 Exhibit
Card Making with Kemetic, Hellenic, Magical and Witch Themes
Letter Writing by Hand
Journalling which included a pandemic diary, magical spell book, magical grimoire and poetic journal with mixed media, watercolour, acrylic and ink drawings.
Blogging – Occult/Magical and Creative Writing
Craft Making (candles, soap, anointing oils, incense blends, herb bundles)
Cooking various new meals which includes celebratory offerings
Created new spells utilising Greek Folk Magic practises
Planted more herbs and focused on cultivating and preserving ones used in Greek and Egyptian magic.
Attended Conference with a Magical/Spiritual Slant :
HoN End of Year Festivities – Epagomenial Days & Wep Ronpet
LIFE is about experiences and the way I feel when I – create, visit or support something which inspires and uplifts me. I find its easier to get energised and complete set objectives if I find personal purpose within the task before me.
Therefore my suggestion for those wanting to set resolutions who then struggle to fulfil them, is to instead write a wish list of intentions, of things you would like to do – to feed your soul and go from there. That way there is less pressure as the focus is more pleasure in your life.
(C) T Georgitsis – all images and text 2020
The best time to honor Hekate is the Deipnon and Noumenia. With that said, every year I create an Athenian Calendar to calculate the Deipnon and Noumenia using the Southern Hemisphere New Moons, to ensure my devotions are on the right evenings for my location. This is calculated by the start off point of the Summer Solstice in Greece of that particular year.
The Athenian Calendar also known as the Attic Calendar was a lunisolar calendar used during the classical period of Ancient Greece during the 4th and 5th Centuries BC. It was exclusively used in Athens at the time and each month starts at the first sighting of the new moon, with the year beginning just after mid-summer. It’s become a modern go to for practicing Hellenics and as such, what we use and have today is a reconstruction of what they used around 300-500 BC. I have superimposed this Athenian Calendar over our modern Gregorian one, to loosely create a festival calendar of 12 months based on the cycle of the moon which starts at the beginning of the Athenian year – on the summer solstice in Athens. The names of the months reflect the gods and festivals honoured at that time and have agricultural links to the planting or harvesting of food in the northern hemisphere.
Here is what the yearly Athenian Calendar basically looks like:
1 Hekatombaion (Ἑκατομβαιών) July/August
2 Metageitnion (Μεταγειτνιών) August/September (named after Apollo)
3 Boedromion (Βοηδρομιών) September/October
4 Pyanepsion (Πυανεψιών) October/November
5 Maimakterion (Μαιμακτηριών) November/December (named after Zeus)
6 Poseideon (Ποσειδεών) December/January
7 Gamelion (Γαμηλιών) January/February
8 Anthesterion (Ἀνθεστηριών) February/March (named after the festival of Anthesteria)
9 Elaphebolion (Ἑλαφηβολιών) March/April
10 Mounichion (Μουνιχιών) April/May
11 Thargelion (Θαργηλιών) May/June
12 Skirophorion (Σκιροφοριών) June/July
Every month lasts for approximately 29-30 days in total. Each month is broken up into 10 days of three which reflect the moon phases in the following order: Waxing, Full and Waning Moons.
Days 1 to 8 were all sacred to gods or spirit entities and the last day of the month, known as “hene kai nea” translated as “the old and the new”, is dedicate to Hekate as it’s her Deipnon along with the first day of the month, Noumenia which is also dedicated to Hekate.
Here are the details of those 8 sacred days in the Athenian Calendar month:
Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon)
Day 2: Agathos Daimon
Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
Day 29-30: Deipnon
To get you all started with adapting the Athenian Calendar to the Gregorian one, here is the Athenian Calendar I created for 2021, calculated for Southern Hemisphere practitioners:
21 June 2020 (12.43am), = Summer Solstice in Greece (Winter Solstice in Australia 21st June 7.43am AEST)
1 Hekatombaion (Ἑκατομβαιών)
21 July – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 3.32am Athenian New Year
22 July – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
23 July – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
24 July – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
26 July – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
27 July – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
28 July – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
17-18 August – Day 29-30: Deipnon
2 Metageitnion (Μεταγειτνιών) (named after Apollo)
19 August – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 12.41pm
20 August – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
21 August – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
22 August – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
24 August – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
25 August – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
26 August – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
15-16 September – Day 29-30: Deipnon
3 Boedromion (Βοηδρομιών)
17 September – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 9.00pm
18 September – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
19 September – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
20 September – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
22 September – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
23 September – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
24 September – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
15-16 October – Day 29-30: Deipnon
4 Pyanepsion (Πυανεψιών)
17 October – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 6.31am
18 October – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
19 October – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
20 October – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
22 October – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
23 October – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
24 October – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
13-14 November – Day 29-30: Deipnon
5 Maimakterion (Μαιμακτηριών) (named after Zeus)
15 November – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 4.07pm
16 November – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
17 November – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
18 November – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
20 November – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
21 November – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
22 November – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
13-14 December – Day 29-30: Deipnon
6 Poseideon (Ποσειδεών)
15 December – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 3.06am
28 November – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
29 November – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
30 November – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
2 December – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
3 December – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
4 December – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
12-13 January – Day 29-30: Deipnon
7 Gamelion (Γαμηλιών)
13 January – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 4.00pm
14 January – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
15 January – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
16 January – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Eros
18 January – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
19 January – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
20 January – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
10-11 February – Day 29-30: Deipnon
8 Anthesterion (Ἀνθεστηριών) (named after the festival of Anthesteria)
12 February – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 6.05am
13 February – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
14 February – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
15 February – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Erosc
17 February- Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
18 February – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
19 February – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
11-12 March – Day 29-30: Deipnon
9 Elaphebolion (Ἑλαφηβολιών)
13 March – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 9.21pm
14 March – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
15 March – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
16 March – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Erosc
18 March – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
19 March – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
20 March – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
10-11 April – Day 29-30: Deipnon
10 Mounichion (Μουνιχιών)
12 April – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 12.30pm
13 April – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
14 April – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
15 April – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Erosc
17 April – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
18 April – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
19 April – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
10-11 May – Day 29-30: Deipnon
11 Thargelion (Θαργηλιών)
12 May – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 4.59am
13 May – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
14 May – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
15 May – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Erosc
17 May – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
18 May – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
19 May – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
8-9 June – Day 29-30: Deipnon
12 Skirophorion (Σκιροφοριών)
10 June – Day 1: Noumenia (New Moon) 8.52pm
11 June – Day 2: Agathos Daimon
12 June – Day 3: Athena’s Birthday
13 June – Day 4: Heracles, Hermes, Aphrodite and Erosc
15 June – Day 6: Artemis’ Birthday
16 June – Day 7: Apollo’s Birthday
17 June – Day 8: Poseidon and Theseus (Mikalson 1975: 24)
8-9 July – Day 29-30: Deipnon
(C) T. Georgitsis 2021
Hekate image shrine made from repurposed wood.
Before our modern throw-away culture – people rarely threw or tossed things away simply because they had outgrown their use or were broken and battered. What they did was re-purpose, re-use or recycle – not only to save cost – but to reduce waste. Some places and people still maintain this kind of living and now more than ever, as our world is being suffocated by waste cluttering our seas and landfills, it’s only environmentally conscious to do the same.
I like to challenge myself to learn to make my own devotional items, especially since I prefer to tailor things for my own spiritual and magickal needs/wants. I find all you need is a can-do attitude, patience and practice – which is essential in developing your crafting skills.
Making your own magickal items for your workings can also ensure the ingredients you use are environmentally and ethically sourced. Also you dont have to spend a fortune for commercially manufactured items which can always be on the pricey side, as you can make things from recycled materials, so not only are you cutting cost but waste.
When my aunt and mother were creating their magickal crafts, there wasnt a local occult shop they could just pop into. What they did is made do with what they could use from around the house and also what they could wild harvest in nature. I am so glad to have had this influence in my early years because quite frankly its taught me to be self-sufficient.
I have a thing for not throwing anything out which I might re-use at a later date. I have a cupboard filled with old jars, containers, paper bags and the like which can be reused or repurposed. I continuously find they come in handy when making my own craft items. I also like to repurpose and take something which once served one purpose and use it for another.
Hekate incense from repurposed jar and herbs.
13 Re-Use and Re-purpose Tips for the Hekate devotee:
- Wash and store old glass jars, bottles and containers as they can come in handy to store various items in them, such as oil blends, herbs, resins, incense, waters, powders etc. You can also use jars as soy candle holders and for jar spells and bottles as candle holders or vases.
- Used charcoal blocks for recipes such as black salt, it can also be gathered and placed in a charcoal burner as a heat buffer between the container and lit charcoal as well as using it for devotional artwork.
- Old pieces of wood can be used to make a shrine box, portable shrine, tools or divination box.
- Perishable offerings can be thrown into a compost for use over a garden and some items can be used to regrow the vegetable or plant it came from by harvesting seeds or planting the roots/tops. I have done this successfully with many vegetables and herbs.
- Offerings in the form of flowers, herbs, salt and even fruit can be reused in the making of incense, water, powders etc. Drying out in a slow burning oven or herb air dryer after you’ve cut up your ingredients is a great way to reuse fruit peels for incense. Also grinding up egg shells or using ground up coffee beans can be used in powders.
- Broken plates, glasses, old pins, rusty nails etc can be used for protection magick such as witches bottles.
- The stubs of candles can be used similar to sealing wax in various spells and workings.
- Use the bees wax from honey comb to make cosmetics, candles and furniture polish.
- Take that old piece of clothing, sheets, towels, tablecloth you love but can use anymore due to damage and wear and cut and and reuse material for crystal and divination bag holders, coverings for magic mirrors or tools and in some instances new altar or shrine cloths.
- Use old egg carton to plant seeds for herbs, plants and trees.
- Use broken crystals, rusty scissors, old keys and cracked statues in specific magick and ritual work.
- Feed the local birds and animals with safe food offerings from your shrine.
- Don’t throw out expired culinary herbs from your pantry, reuse them for spells, mojo bags, incense and the like.
Hekate mugwort candles made from repurposed beeswax and oil made from dried out herb.
I like to make my own version of Hekate Black salt repurposing spent charcoal and expired herbs using the following recipe which I would like to share which is easy to make:
Hekate’s *Black Salt (© T. Georgitsis 2014)
- 2 parts kosher rock salt
- 1 part ash from the herbs of: dandelion, lavender, mint, bay, mugwort and rue (or any herb you associate with Hekate which is safe to burn and turn into ash)
- In a heat proof dish and preferably outside take some dried dandelion root, lavender, mint, mugwort and rue herbs and burn with a lighter** until they are reduced to ash. Whilst doing this visualise what kind of things you want to remove or banish out of your life.
- Take the ash and in a mortar, crush and blend it with a pestle with half the amount of salt to your ash ratio.
- Once blended use or store in an air tight container for later.
Simple Use for Black Salt
Sprinkle around the perimeter of your home. With a long handled broom sweep the perimeter containing the traces of black salt outwards and away from your home.
*Not to be confused with the Indian spice black salt which is pink in colour.
** I prefer the long handled turbo gas lighters for the reach and ability to stay lit with wind
Hekate khernips from flowing water wildcrafted and stored in a re-purposed jar.
I strongly urge devotees to go and try and re-use and re-purpose items in Hekate’s name. Also if anyone has any other ideas they would like to share with me I would love to hear them.
(C) T. Georgitsis 2014, Updated 2020
In Victoria, Australia we are currently in Stage 4 lockdown due to the pandemic, which means we can’t leave the house (unless your are an essential worker or its for medical, caretaking or limited exercise) and therefore those of us who can – are working from home.
Hekate is well known as a Goddess of the hearth and home and many of her devotees have shrines dedicated to her in their homes. Therefore it is quite appropriate to venerate and honour her moreso whilst you are working from home.
Personally I have felt many more benefits when it comes to honouring the Gods and working with them in plain sight whilst I am working from home. Some of the added benefits I have discovered include active practice whilst being productive during working hours. To help those of you who would like to increase your practice whilst at home when it comes to Hekate (or any other God/dess) I have come up with 13 things you can do which I have listed below.
13 Things for Hekate whilst working from home:
- Burn incense.
- Burn aromatherapy oils.
- Perform a midday devotional.
- Eat more holistically, actively putting mindful vibrational energies into your food whilst preparing it and then eating it slowly, savouring each bite as a blessing.
- Listen to witchy music and podcasts out loud.
- Use any breaks for magic or spiritual work such as reading a chapter from a Hekate book you have been wanting to read or giving yourself a quick reading or healing.
- Your working desk can be covered in crystals, tarot cards, Goddess statues, bones etc – things which resonate with the energies and remind you of Hekate.
- You can surround yourself with Hekate centric art which you can focus on when you need to give your eyes a break from computer work to prevent eye strain.
- Journaling or note taking for deeper development at a later time. If something comes to you such as an idea for a devotional act in Hekate’s name such as a spell, chant, hymn, ritual or some volunteering or support work which can be done from home you have the freedom to pause and focus on that.
- Hekate’s gardening during breaks – use your breaks to maintain, admire or surround yourself with your herbs, flowers or trees. You can also use this time to start to plant a Hekate garden which can be something as small as a herb on a windowsill.
- You can make herbal teas or juices in honour of Hekate to sip on whilst you work.
- Sing, chant, dance and sway as a way to move your body when you need to get up to prevent RSI, back-pain or workplace fatigue.
- If you havent done it already a Hekate shrine can be set up near or on your workspace or you can maintain the one you currently have.
I am sure there are other things you can do to honour Hekate whilst working from home, which doest take away from the work you need to complete, which can create a deeper connection to her and her devotion. So my advice is – use this time wisely and don’t waste the opportunity.
With the above said, you can also simply chose to do nothing of the above except contemplate or think upon the nature of Hekate and how you feel about her or her role in your life and in the world generally.
Whatever you choose to do during this time be kind and gentle to yourself and those around you. This is a unique time for us, which is full of emotions and stress and which should be taken care of, instead of projected in unhealthy ways (whether it be towards yourself or others).
(C) T. Georgitsis 2020
My first memory of scent is the scent of livani (aka mosholivano which is a greek incense made from frankincense and flowers/herbs) through the house which my mother would burn on a sunday to honour the blessed dead and/or ancestors as well as cleanse the house of malignant and negative forces. It was a lesson in sensory magick and that it triggered a heightened state of spiritual connection. Whenever I smelled that scent I felt the ancestors were near and that I was wrapped up in a blanket of protection. These days the smell of livani connects me to my ancestors and Gods through the communion of scent due to burning it as a regular part of my magical and spiritual devotions.
Resins in Ancient Greece, specifically plant resins, were used in religious and ceremonial rites such as frankincense and myrrh as noted by Theophrastus and mastic as noted in the Hymns of Orpheus. Burning resins as an incense was seen as a way to communicate with Diety and feed them as well as acknowledging their presence through scent. In Ancient Greece incense was burned not only to please Deity but as an accompaniment to rituals which were religious, civic and family-centric in nature. They were also used in festivals of Ancient Greece to mark each phase of said festival, from procession to prayer to sacrifice. Incense burners were seen as a staple in Ancient Greek sanctuaries and they burned resins for purification and as a pure offering.
Resins in modern practice like in ancient practice are burned as an incense using a censor or thirable on a shrine or altar. Many modern Greeks burn it in their homes in an incense holder for their deceased relatives and Greek Orthodox churches burn thirables of incense at every ceremony. When my father passed away according to Greek tradition I had to walk around the hearse carrying his coffin, three times with lit livani before it made its way to church. All family members were gathered and watched, taking in the scent to purify his journey, as well as cleansing his last residence.
Many modern witches, magicians and reconstructurists also burn resins as part of their religious or magical practice whether it be in ceremony, ritual, spell work, meditation or as a way for them to trigger what they are seeking through the use of scent.
My last sojourn to Greece I stayed on the island of Chios which is known for their mastic resin from the Schinias region tree on the island’s south. This resin which is hard crystallised drops is collected from trees in the summer in the Schinias region when they are hit with an iron tool. This practice has been occurring for over 2500 years and continues to this day. The resin is used in incense as well as medicines, cosmetics, embalming and cleaning products. The whole island’s economy relies on this resin not only as a product, but as a tourist draw. I remember buying a few boxes of mastic as gifts and a keep sake. When I returned from my trip I chewed it (as it was the first gum in Ancient Greece) and also used it in my incense blends, as well as gifted it to a few family members and friends much to their delight.
Burning resins can promote feelings of centred calm, can engage and open the mind whilst assisting in connection to spirit and Deity during ritual, spiritual and meditative practices.
I like to make my own incense blends and predominately use resins which I either use on their own or mix with other resins, herbs, oils or flowers. The act in itself of choosing the resins and using a mortar and pestle to crush the resins and then blend any additional ingredients, is very alchemical in its process for me and is a devotional act I employ regularly. As someone who burns resins as part of my daily Hellenic practice as a devotee to Hekate, I have spent years experimenting to create the right blends for Her with Her various titles I venerate and for assorted purposes.
When blending resins for magical, ritual or spiritual use, I suggest you research and find those which resonate with you and your workings and devotionals. I also suggest you burn them in a heatproof container such as a heat proof thirable, dish or cauldron and ensure there is adequate ventilation.
As stated above, burning resins is a huge part of my practice to Hekate and as such have created a list of resins I have found resonate with her workings which I have shared below:
Plant Resins for Hekate by *Setjataset
Balm of Gilead
Please note certain resins can be harmful or toxic if ingested, inhaled or placed on skin.
As always please research and check all the resins you will be handling before working with them to ensure you do so in a safe manner.
(C) *T. Georgitsis 2020
Hekate’s Pandemic Soap
Lemon & Lemon Myrtle: clarifies, increases awareness, cleanses through purification and longevity and is anti-stress.
Eucalyptus & Blue Eucalyptus: stimulates, reinvigorates, heals, balances, protects and relieves mental and emotional stress.
I wanted to make an Australiana style cleansing soap I could use, since we are in Stage 3 lockdown here in Victoria and I wanted to wash my hands with something magical with a shout out to the land I live on. I have always had a bottle of Australian Eucalyptus on hand but a mere few weeks before the pandemic really hit us, I was researching Australian natives and ended up buying a few bottles of different oils to experiment with. This in hindsight was a boon, as these essential oils are perfect during this time.
The green soap pictured is Lemon (Citrus Limonium) and Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus Radiate). I tried to mix some volcanic mud it it for the colour, however it sunk to the bottom as I placed the oils in before the mud and therefore did not blend right (lesson learned). So then I added a swirl of all natural green food die so I could tell the two soaps apart.
The blue soap pictured is Lemon Myrtle (Backhousia Citriodora) and Blue Mallee Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus Globulus) and I used all natural blue food die. I liked the scent of this one the best as its stronger and more appealing.
I then charged them with purpose: to cleanse, protect, bring long life, strength and luck whilst also de-stressing.
This is the quick and easy method of soap making I used which I have blogged about previously if you want to make your own (just add 6-12 drops of each oil to a 1/2 kilo batch of soap):
(C) *T. Georgitsis 2020
Having been raised with domestic cats as pets, I have developed a strong connection to the feline and have been lucky enough to be owned by a few cat familiars. My first familiar* came to my attention in my late teens when I became interested in Wicca and I set up my altar. My ginger tabby Hoody would love to jump onto the altar and absorb the energies raised upon it, even though on occasion he would singe the end of his tail on the candles lit upon it. Hoody would accompany me or keep watch over me whilst I performed spells and rituals. When I would cast circle he would actually be able to discern where the invisible boundary of the circle was and would dutifully pace the boundary in a stance of protection and once the ritual had started he would sit sphinx position outside the boundary facing in and watch over me. This led me to find out more about cats and the role they have played in magick and not surprisingly they are considered a magickal and sacred animal all the way back to Ancient Egypt, right to the modern witch.
Cats were believed magickal and sacred in various cultures around the world. In Ancient China, Ii-Shou the god of the gathered crops took the form of a cat to protect the harvest. In Japan the Emperor Ichijo found 5 kittens in his palace during the 10th day of the 5th moon which was an auspicious day and thereafter cats were considered good luck and images were placed in temples, businesses and homes. In Ancient Rome cats were sacred to the Goddess Diana and were seen as guardians and protectors of the home whilst also being a symbol of domestic virtuousness. In Norse mythology the fertility Goddess Freyja’s chariot is drawn by cats and they are believed to be a blessing with respects to procreation and newborns.
With respects to Ancient Greece and associated mythology, there is a small connection to cats and Hekate through the mythology of Galinthias by Ovid, where Galinthias was turned into a polecat (a type of weasel) by Hera and Hekate feeling sorry for Galinthias appointed her a sacred servant and/or priestess. I also came across this gem with respects to cats and Hekate:
“Among ancient civilizations, however, the cat was probably least popular among the Greeks owing to its association in certain myths with the goddess of death, darkness and witches, Hecate, who is more commonly associated with the dog (as is her Roman conterpart, Trivia)” (1)
I could say that cats can be servants of Hekate devotees but those of you who are owned by a cat know this to the the complete opposite, however they can make wonderful familiars and many devotees have them in their lives.
In modern Greece there are feral and wild cats all over the country and in some places are fed by various volunteer groups. When I lived in Athens (Nea Erythrea) and then the island of Lemnos (Kondopouli and Myrina) and I would always notice cats everywhere – in town squares, parks and ancient sites and the locals always fed them and protected them.
Its often speculated that the Priests of Ancient Egypt were the first to domesticate wild cats whom they fed temple scraps to. Images of the cat in Ancient Egypt can be traced as far back as 2600BCE which shows the longevity of their interaction with humans. Cats were mummified and placed in tombs which showed they were greatly loved and valued by their owners who would also shave their eyebrows in an act of deep mourning. Cats were so revered in Ancient Egypt that harming a cat was a crime punishable by death.
The Egyptian Goddess Bast was originally a lion headed goddess but her image eventually morphed into a cat headed goddess due to the sacredness the Ancient Egyptians held them in. Bast was the daughter of the sun god Ra and the daughter of mistress of magick, Isis and one of Bast’s titles was “Rage of the Eye of Ra” and Bast’s name itself means soul of Isis – Ba-En-Auset. Some myths describe her as the daughter of the God of the Underworld, Osiris instead of Ra and thus her role also includes Mistress of the Dead.
Bast’s symbols are the sistrum (a dancing rattle) and as such Bast is attributed with dance, music, love, sexuality and pleasure which gives her connections to Hathor. Another symbol was a basket which represents the womb of life and as such Bast is ascribed as the goddess of fertility, motherhood and the underworld. Lastly another sacred symbol to Bast is the aegis, a shield like ornament and with that association Bast is credited with war and protection. Adorned in red, the symbol of motherhood and as a daughter of the sun god Ra, Bast oversaw the growth of the crops in the fields and was a representative of the sun. Being dual natured Bast also was the moon representative of the eye of Horus and her strongly independent nature also classified her as a virgin ie being owned by no man. The magnificent attributes of Bast strongly correlate with the characteristics of a domestic cat and as such shows their archetypal energies were elevated to the status of “God” thousands of years ago and if you have a cat in your life or been around cats, you know they wouldn’t expect any less.
Originally in British folk lore the black cat was viewed as lucky and was seen as a symbol of the dark night as they could shadow their witches at night time rituals. Black cats are traditionally seen as the witches cat because they were viewed as being able to be able to absorb and carry magick. In many cases cats kept company of people like midwives, herbalists, healers and witches in the middle ages due to their independent yet caring nature which made them perfect companions for solitary practitioners. During the 16th and 17th century cats whom were seen as familiars of witches were persecuted along with them and so were exterminated in large numbers which decimated their population and increased the rat population which is believed to have caused the plague to spiral out of control during these times.
As a magickal familiar the cat can give a witch warning of psychic attack or spiritual presences by their alert and observant natures. The cat can be a centred, graceful and calm guide who inspires us to find that within ourselves and it can allow us to channel our magick in a clear and concise way. The feline familiar teaches us to pay attention and be vigilant with respects to the subtle changes around us which we can work with and which will aid our intuition. Through the wisdom of the cat’s traits of hunting we can be inspired to explore in search of new possibilities with a cautious yet playful way. Also the cat’s ability to sit and just be encourages us to do this which allows for self contemplation. The feline familiar has confidence in themselves which is evident in their graceful walk, constant grooming and “I don’t care what you think” attitude which can in turn encourage us to be confident within ourselves, our bodies and our sexuality. When we are ill, a cat familiar instinctively knows this and the developed bond will allow them to show they are here for support and this can inspire the same behaviour in us with others.
I know so many witches, magicians and devotees of magick (especially those who work with and honour Hekate) who have black cats. They resonate with this beautiful animal and feel blessed to have them in their home. I myself am currently owned by two black kittens who I rescued recently after my previous rescue passed away. My previous rescue was called Midnight and was born on Samhain Eve, he had a penchant for Hekate’s shrine and I would find him sitting behind her shrine when ill or before it when he was just chilling. I would come home and find him smelling like wild flower livani, something I always had sitting on Hekate’s shrine, yet nothing had been moved on the shrine, which made me deduce he simply liked the energy of it. When I would go into shrine he would sit by my side and watch, sometimes observing occurrences invisible to my eyes. Therefore from my own UPG although Hekate has been associated with dogs, I personally find that the cat resonates with Hekate and her archetypal energy.
A cat is not a pack animal and as such doesn’t need a leader and can live an isolated existence with its owner. Fiercely independent and able to confidently display their various moods, cats don’t seek to be ruled. Their dualistic nature can range from purring loving bundles of fur, to predatory hunters who can scratch and bite if threatened, which in my opinion is the perfect familiar for those who resonate with those qualities. A cat has nine lives and it is said that a witch can transform into a cat nine times in their lifetime. The magick of the cat can be used to bewitch, protect, transform, bless, charm and scry and with that said I strongly urge you to connect to these magnificent feline beauties and find what benefits they can bring into your practice.
* Familiar = an animal believed to be possessed of magic powers and has close association with a magickal practitioner.
(1) = Mark, Joshua J. “Cats in the Ancient World.” Ancient History Encyclopedia. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 17 Nov 2012. Web. 15 Jul 2020.
(C) *T. Georgitsis 2014, updated in 2020
Hekate Pandemic Candles – Sage, Pomegranite and various stones (depending on jar). This is the recipe I used:
I added some of my home grown organic sage and the crystals were hand picked from a supplier both which resonated with Hekate. I used C-Soy from a local candle supplier and non toxic fragrance for the pomegranate and sage along with container maker which stops the soy from frosting in the glass jar.
I then charged them with purpose: to protect, cleanse, bring long life, strength and luck whilst healing.
(C) *T. Georgitsis 2020