It’s only been recently that I’ve come to really grasp the purpose for Ayslyn’s Corner. Originally, I created the blog to be my own little place of rebellion, but as I’ve grown in my faith, that’s changed. I want it to be a reflection of my journey—one that an increasing number of people are taking. I want the things that are posted to be things that I have experienced, created, discovered, even if a million others have already been there. It is a journey that, even though countless walk, the footsteps are never the same.

When I first became Wiccan, I began my year and a day. But it was a flippant, immature thing, and I couldn’t have taken it seriously if I wanted to. I was still living at home with staunchly Christian parents, cloistered into a bedroom with my two younger sisters. That is not the case for me now.

I have chosen a Book of Shadows. I have cast the cloth over my altar. I have lit the candles. I can now practice casting a circle, wield a wand and speak the words that have waited in my heart since my birth. They say that you will know when you are ready to begin your year and a day and perform the self-dedication ritual. I have set aside a date for mine: the next new moon, Jan 23rd.

The self-dedication is a highly personalized ritual in which an individual dedicated herself or himself to the study of magick, Wicca, witchcraft, Paganism, druidry, etc. It does not make you Wicca. It is like a driver’s permit; it’s a license to learn. It expresses your intent to the universe and all the gods, and solidifies it within yourself. It is the solitary equivalent of a coven’s initiation, and as such should be taken seriously.

Some say that a self-dedication is not a true initiation into the mysteries because it is performed solo rather than by a coven high priestess. Still, there are others who maintain they feel no need to do a self-dedication. Like everything in Wicca, it is up to the individual, and choices should only be made on what is within your heart and soul. My self-dedication is my declaration, and also my prayer of forgiveness for my flimsy affirmation years ago.

What has your experience with self-dedication been?