A Spiritual Toolkit for the Modern Woman
Olivia Wheldon guides you through the witchy basics
If you’re on the tube or in the shower and find yourself thinking, I need a crystal for that, your Modern Woman status is confirmed. As an ambitious, pro-activism female, striving for change and eating smashed patriarchy on toast for breakfast, it’s no wonder that you feel crushed by the powers that be. Just when we thought things couldn’t get any worse with Trump stepping into the White House, they did: gun laws never changed, but abortion laws did. Survivors still struggle to be believed. Peaceful protestors are being shut down in Sudanese streets. Climate emergency is fighting to be declared whilst many deny its existence. This is our world.
We are tapping in to the collective consciousness of humanity and tending the wound of the sisterhood. We are more triggered than ever before. We are experiencing global pain, outrage and anguish. Still, in the 21st century, we are shattering glass ceilings with our voices. Still, in the 21st century, we catch the lingering whiff of misogyny in the work place. Still, in the 21st century, is mental health shrouded in stigma. The socio-economic constraints, money worries, political anxiety and irrational fear that we’re not being feminist enough are overwhelmingly characteristic of the times we’re living in. Girl, I got you.
As a crystal dealer by day and Reiki healer by night, over at White Witch Collective, I can tell you that checking in with yourself, establishing energetic boundaries and having an arsenal of spiritual tools can help with the pressures of reality. Crystals were the catalyst that set the wheels in motion for my spiritual development and, consequently, a more balanced life. Through tuning in to each individual stone’s energy, I discovered that each was here to impart some wisdom. Crystals are ancient masters, great gurus, healers. Energy exists in everything; there is no such thing as ‘nothing.’ Just as we gravitate towards certain people and not others, so too are we called to the right crystals with an energetic match. Alongside these treasures of the Earth, I have woven in a blend of rituals and practices to aid spiritual development, calm anxiety and ground yourself in life’s frenetic blur. I’ll share them with you.
“Which crystal is best for _____?” If I had a penny for every time I am asked this question, I wouldn’t need to practise abundance spells. Frankly, any crystal can be used for any thing. Naturally, some are better suited for certain purposes, like rose quartz and matters of the heart or womb space, but don’t let associations confuse you. Keep it simple and go for what calls you. You’ll find that the crystals know what you need, so just trust your intuition on this one. That being said, I’d advise crystal beginners to dip a toe into this magickal world by opting for something relatively gentle, like clear quartz, rose quartz or agate. I believe that rose quartz is the best starter stone for any collection.
The best crystals for anxiety, I’ve found, are smoky quartz and black tourmaline. Coffee-brown in colour, like the rich earth from which they’re pulled, smokies ground and remind us to embody ourselves, instead of living in the overthinking, racing mind. These crystals have a tranquilising, almost sedative effect. Their presence is warm and comforting.
Black tourmaline is a spiritual sanitiser in that it dispels any negativity from your space, making it top of my list when I travel or engage with people. Fun fact: I will not sleep anywhere without this stone. In its absence, I am susceptible to psychic attack when I sleep, a phenomenon that actually sparked my discovery of crystals and their power in the first place. I sought strength and protection and found both in black tourmaline and smoky quartz.
For those curious, psychic attack is a spiritual phenomenon involving negative energy directed from one person to another, usually due to underlying jealousy, anger or resentment. However, it is my belief that we can bring about psychic attack on ourselves when negative behavioural or thinking patterns get the better of us. Just as we have the power to manifest dreams and
desires and positive outcomes if we work at asking for what we want, so too can the volatile, tricksy ego tempt us into black holes of pessimism and self-sabotaging beliefs to our own detriment. The ego is our worst enemy, and can also be known as the Shadow Self – the part of us kept in the dark, hidden from the world. The more time we dwell here, in negative thinking, the more we attract negative energy to us.
My own psychic attack was a violent mess of doors slamming throughout my bedroom, bathroom and closet in the dead of night, towels mysteriously floating off radiators to hang, suspended in thin air and strange sightings of what can only be described as ominous shadows that oozed onto the floor like oil spills when nothing blocked the light. These occurrences seemed supernatural at face value, so I believed I was being haunted. Paralyzed by fear for the few days it lasted, I tend not to dwell on it now, but I strongly believe these disturbing experiences were not external. Instead, they were my darkest thoughts playing out in reality; a product of my acutely anxious psyche at the time. I had no knowledge of grounding, hadn’t learnt the tools for defending my energy (even from myself) or being aware of my aura. Energetically, I was out of control. If a dog goes unwalked for a week, it’ll tear the house down. So too will our energy fields (or ‘auras’) if they go unacknowledged for any period of time. It is vitally important to check in with ourselves, ask what needs the light to be shone on it, process buried emotions and ground through meditations. Being in the body through awareness is key to preventing this kind of experience.
Showers cleanse you of dirt. Smudging cleanses you of spiritual grit and grime. An ancient shamanic tradition, smudging involves the burning of sacred herbs in the belief that the smoke will ward off negative energy – including Brenda and her bullshit at work. The most popular smudges on the market are white sage but, due to the unsustainable wild-harvesting of this indigenous plant, it’s in danger of becoming extinct. I handcraft alternative smudge wands from foraged English herbs and eucalyptus, which are available on the shop, but it’s fun to make your own! The accompanying mantra I use when smudging is only energies vibrating with love, light and positivity are welcome here. Any negative energies be gone! Pace around your space, waving the wand slowly and brush it through your aura. Once you’ve grown used to the sound of your own voice, the practice becomes empowering. I do this ritual as part of my daily spiritual housekeeping, but it’s best for bedrooms post-nightmare, or where you’ve had an argument. Sometimes, you just feel the need to burn away all the spiritual grit from your aura after a long day and smudging is the remedy.
You are so powerful. You can be, do, have anything you want. Your dreams are within reach. You matter. You are important. Take up as much space in this universe as you want. The universe is literally called Space. You were born to dance across it.
Affirmations are a wonderful way to manifest your heart’s calling. Smudge away any self- limiting thoughts or beliefs and once you’ve released all that no longer serves, it’s time to call in what you want. Culturally, we are afraid to ask for what we desire. We are afraid to fail so we don’t try to unfold our wings. Once we begin vocalising our hidden wishes and dreams, we send little waves of positivity out into the universe. If accompanied with specific mental imagery and hard work, you’ll probably begin to see things falling into place. Serendipitous synchronicities. Consider a lemon on a hot, balmy summer’s afternoon. You slice it open and zingy juice sprays out. The thought of this alone is enough to make you salivate, illuminating the mind-body connection. Now, just consider what the damage of chronically down-talking yourself could do. Our thoughts and words have a weight, a vibration that ripples out into the quantum field and events that match their vibration manifest in our reality.
Quantum Field Theory is the notion that our universe is a giant gyrating web of energy and particles, moving like an ocean, fluid. What we put out there travels outwards, like a current, gaining momentum and power as it flows, until it comes back to greet or haunt us. Some call it the Butterfly Effect. If you want love and light, BE love and light – starting with yourself. If you want security and money, decide to feel secure and spend some money. In remembering the roof over our heads, the food in our fridges and the joy in our days, we remember our infinite supply of wealth. Choosing to feel abundant attracts more abundance. In giving we receive. Choose your thoughts and words carefully. Speak the language of love and you’ll call it to you. And so it is.
Every emotion has an energetic signature or frequency attached to it. Emotion is energy in motion. Unconditional love is one of the highest goods, but gratitude is up there too. When we feel gratitude radiating from the heart, we attract more of what lights us up. Practising gratitude is so important because it humbles and grounds us, making every-day life a series of little miracles. Simply checking in with ourselves to be grateful for our hands, our feet, our eyes, our beds, our literacy, our vote, our privileges is life-changing when done routinely. If everyone on the street bundled their problems int bags and left them on the front step, chances are, we’d each take back our own instead of swapping.
Make gratitude your modus operandi and, suddenly, the banal, taken-for-granted pieces of ourselves become divine blessings. When we have those pieces, we have everything. The high vibrations of gratitude can be harnessed in manifestation work. When you’re grateful for something you don’t yet have but seek, you attract it to you through the quantum field – the ripple effect, outlined above. For example, if you dream of that house on the hill, picture it in your mind’s eye, imagine driving up to the gates, full of gratitude for this place, a house on the hill you can manifest. It’s natural to feel the gut-punch of jealousy or disappointment when we don’t have what we desire, but visiting this negative space simply prolongs our time wallowing in it, whilst postponing the wished-for outcomes.
When you wake, write down five things you are grateful for – three of which you already have, two of which you don’t have yet but want. Do not sigh in wistfulness when you reach the last two. Imagine everything as you wish it to be and feel your heart well up with gratefulness for it. Watch the magick unfold.
You can surround yourself with an entire arsenal of spiritual tools, be they physical objects or intangible thoughts, but the greatest tool in your possession is love. We’re all on this spiritual journey together. Keep it simple, go where you are guided and trust the timing of things. Practice gratefulness, radiate love and life falls into place.