Choosing Your Spell Catalysts: Which Strategy is Better?

Pop Quiz – which of these statements do you agree with more?

A: I create my spells/intentional workings using catalysts (herbs, colors, crystals) that have traditional meanings, like those in correspondence charts.
B: I create my spells/intentional workings using catalysts that I choose using my intuition.

Which is better for your spell? Both choices have merit.

When I first started out on the path of the witch, I read everything I could get my hands on. Wanting to do everything “right,” I started lists of correspondences in my book of shadows, as well as cross referenced Excel spreadsheets. I enjoy research and really loved putting together spellworkings based on all of my research.

Using traditional associations for a magickal item has a unique advantage. When you use a catalyst for a traditional purpose, like water for emotions, or north = earth, you tap into the egregore associated with that item. In occult studies, the word egregore can mean a thoughtform- a group energy. If you have 50,000 people all repeatedly evoking earth energy while facing the north – that’s a lot of energy that has been channeled! Aligning with this energy flow that has already been established means that it will be easier to evoke that energy, or if it’s a working- that your working will be successful. You are aligning your intent with a flow of energy that has already been established.

Also, if you are a crazy Virgo like myself…   most of us love research and analyzing charts. Any other nerd here?

But, don’t forget about intuition.

You have intuition for a reason. Several reasons, actually, but one actionable way to use it is to let it help you choose what to use in a spell. Ask yourself simple questions like:

  • “What would amplify my intent?”
  • “What color would be best for this working?”
  • “What looks/feels/smells/sounds like the end result I desire?”
  • “What ___________ shall I associate with the element of ____________?”

Ask yourself questions and then allow yourself time to listen to the answer. If this doesn’t work for you easily, consider going into meditation and asking these questions.

When you have some personal intuitive answers, it’s not a bad idea to also consult traditional correspondences as well. Spellworkings are about energy and intent. I know that people like to say “INTENT IS EVERYTHING,” but if I just intend to do something – anything- nothing will happen. I can intend to wash the dishes in my kitchen sink. I will not have clean dishes unless I get up out of my chair and do something about it, right?

Spellworkings are like that too. You get out of it what you put into it. That energy isn’t just the energy that you raise during the actual working. It’s also the energy and time that you put into creating it. I can’t tell you how many times I’d created the perfect working, only to have the end result manifest before I even actually DO the working!

So, I advise- when at all possible, use both intuition and tradition to learn about the catalysts associated with your next intentional working. By tapping into the egregore that comes with tradition and your personal intuitive choices, you’ll create a strong working with a high chance of success!

Want to learn more about spellcrafting? Check out this post that will help you put together a successful spell.


  1. charlotte bertaut

    I use my own intuition to do working. The follow of nature i use mostly, so there is never a set ,repeat on an intentions . since i work off of energy vibes/ surges it is quit hard for me to use a routine . some times others spells are needed tho. like recipes for healing , and learning the uses of different materials . learning how things work together ,and why. feeling the different out puts of energies allows me to understand each idem. like getting to know a new person , but plants and makes it easier later down the line to go off of understanding , vibes etc for things to go together without going by a book.
    Thanks for bringing this up. you are awesome !

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