I found this link a few years ago and left it to explore for later. I’m glad the site is still up. It’s always sad to find things gone.
The Book of Tides, is a resource site for sea magick. Site started in 1995 by Minnie, “resident Sea Witch and mermaid-in-disguise”.
I have taken information and some quotes from the site and added my thoughts along the way. As Minnie herself says, I like to have things written down. So much easier to look at the information again than to hope I remember it. We do forget things and ideas meld and merge into something different. Not always a bad thing, but it is good to have the original to refer to.
I have read more about fire, and fire magick, than water magick. I do love the ocean though.
There is something about standing on the edge of a huge body of water (more often Lake Ontario, or the other Great Lakes, for me) and knowing there is depth there and layers of water covering over a world with creatures and life of its own, not seen by those who live on the land. Being on the lake, or the ocean, is an experience everyone should have at least once. Like flying. Being in the air or in/ on the water is something you can do. I highly do not recommend experiencing fire in the same way.
I have been to both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, here in Canada. For some reason the Pacific appeals to me more than the Atlantic. It might just the the different feelings about the provinces here in Canada. British Columbia, on the Pacific is thought of as wild, free and artsy. The Atlantic is about fishing and struggle. So far I have only been to the Atlantic side once and about half a dozen visits to the Pacific side.
In actuality, there is but one World Ocean. Without it, life as we know it would not exist on this planet. All life on this planet began in the sea, and each person carries within ourselves our own sea of blood as salt water runs through our veins. This internal sea establishes a connection between all beings through our origins in the sea. We are all affected by it, just as we affect it in turn.
Source: The Book of Tides
Do you need to live near the ocean, the sea, or large body of water?
Minnie says you don’t need to live near the sea and can use almost any form of water with salt added . At some point, without access to the sea or the ocean, wouldn’t this just become water magick?
I love the idea of sea magick but it does seem a bit sad to think any water and some table salt would do. You can create some form of salted water but I feel it would be the difference between something created by nature versus something man/human made.
Like using a plastic bottle instead of glass. The glass is just different, it feels different and looks different and reacts differently to the elements. I really feel a glass bottle, or the real sea/ocean is so much more than a plastic bottle, or water from the tap or hose.
Instead of making do with tap water make a point to visit the ocean or a sea and bring along a large container, collect your own sea water and use it sparingly until you can make another trip out to get real sea water. Don’t sell yourself short. I do agree with working with what you have, as she writes next, but tap water isn’t sea water. Table salt isn’t natural salt from the sea either. If you are serious about this don’t settle for less.
I would like to live on the ocean. Unless I moved I think I would have to consider myself a lake witch at this point. Maybe a combination of sea magick and forest magick? Lake Ontario is great for beach coming and we do have some seafaring lore.
Sea magick is associated with seafaring, beach combing, moon lore, the tides, and weather.
Minnie says it can be a dark or grey area of magick. This is something I believe for most magick. Anything claiming to be all light (or all dark) doesn’t sound believable. Almost nothing is that simple and uncomplicated.
She says it is for solitary witches, those who like the isolation, which suits me very well. But, like any tradition of Pagan or Witch, people can choose how they want to practice when it comes to being alone or finding a group. I do prefer not dealing with a group, but that doesn’t mean it is the best, or better, way. It’s just personal.
Also, I wonder why the sun is not included. Why only moon lore? Possibly to do with navigation by stars at night. But, you certainly feel the sun on the ocean, even on a lake.
Types of sea magick: Beach, Moon, and Weather magick.
Symbolism of the Sea – Quoted from What is a Sea Witch?
Gems: pearls, moonstones, aquamarines, clear quartz, shells, beryls, emeralds, coral
Colours: white, blue, black, emerald green
Symbols: moon, spiral, wave, crescent, cloud, lightning bolt
Tools: mirror, cauldron, cup, broom, comb and mirror, mop and bucket
Herbs and foods: fish and shellfish, seaweeds such as kelp and nori, sea salt, bouillabaisse, watermelon, grapes, coconut, cantaloupe, champagne, honeydew melon, rosemary, parsley, chamomile, watercress, spearmint, basil, white rum
Minnie also writes about sea glass, which are glass or pottery pieces tumbled into stones by the ocean (lake, etc.). You can find these while beach combing. I have heard of a beach, it may have been in California, which is a rainbow of colours in sea glass.
She has very good information about beach combing and seashells. But, if you really want to know more about sea magick read the page which has information about the alter and tools she she uses. If you have read this and want to know more, I’d start there.