Crafting the Book of Shadows: What goes in hardcopy?

In my last post, I put forth the idea that most written items that would not be needed in circle get put in some form of a digital Book of Shadows.  I can see how that might be semi-traumatic for some and leave them with a sense of “well, what could stay?!”  So I thought that with this post, I could address what I currently try to maintain in my physical Book of Shadows.

Of course, a major component of this book are ritual scripts.  Ideally, my goal is to archive the final drafts of all my rituals in my Book of Shadows.  I can see how that would be an awfully tall order over the course of a lifetime, so I expect that one day I’ll probably end up with a dedicated Book of Rituals in addition to a BOS, too.  But that’s perfectly fine, of course.  Right now my rituals fall into a few main categories:  Sabbats, Esbats, Rites of Passage, specialized spell rituals, and daily rituals.  Naturally the Sabbats are the eight major holidays.  Esbats include full and new moon rituals.  Rites of Passage include things like rituals for births, Wiccanings, coming of age, graduations, marriages, divorce, moving house, entering menopause, death…anything in that line.  Specialized spell rituals is a sort of ambiguous category right now that includes things like a house cleansing and ritual sex…as I mentioned, it’s ambiguous.  Daily rituals are outlines for morning and evening devotions and that sort of thing.

Man, just looking over that huge list makes me cringe…this really is going to be a huge section someday!

Of course, I have room for smaller sections, too.  There’s a moonphase calendar for the year, a section for altar diagrams and their rationale, a section for tool descriptions and their usages, a section for prayers and poetry, and a section for charges of the gods.  My favorite of these is the section for chants and songs.  Then, of course, there are sections for basic tables of correspondence before the other really big section:  Spells.

That basically encompasses the ‘practical’ half of my current BOS set up, but there’s also a theoretical half.  This would include writings of theology, myth, and lore.  Passages on craft laws would be here, too, as well as meditations upon ethics.

That can definitely get quite weighty.  I wonder what my BOS will look like in another 10 years?

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