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GSW Preview Classes

Curious as to what you can look forward to during your studies? Below you'll find a few previews of our "So you want to be a ... Wizard" classes, each providing a glance at Wizardry in that Department. You can learn more about our 16 Departments by clicking here.

So you Want to be an Indigo Wizard: Preview

Does knowledge and wisdom come from book-learning?  Many Wizards and cunning people of old had wisdom that came from experience, not books. The best wisdom often does, after all, Wisdom is a lot older than books (even scrolls).  However, the formally educated Wizards, from classical times to the present, have studied their arts philosophically, which is different from simple experience.  

What does it mean to think philosophically?  That is the very first question a true philosopher and Wizard must face.  

Thinking philosophically means digging deeper, asking questions, even questions like "Are gods real?" or "What is the purpose of life?" or "What is Reality?" or "What is Truth?"  Big questions.  Questions aimed at truths underlying all the other departments of learning.  Wisdom is about extending our learning beyond mere knowledge to deeper understanding of what we do not know.

The Greek philosopher Socrates said, "The only thing I know is that I know nothing, and I am not even sure about that."

We start out in life knowing nothing.  A few instincts and lots of potential.  As we grow we start to acquire knowledge two ways:  from talking with other people and from the data of our own senses.  Data is not knowledge.  Our senses gather data; our brain arranges the data into patterns that make knowledge.  

In the way data is not the same as knowledge, neither is knowledge the same as truth.  We can be entirely wrong and mistaken in what we believe.  The philosopher takes off from this point and seeks wisdom, which is a higher faculty of the mind that examines what we know, to see if it is really true or not.  Modern sciences all developed from philosophy and share this aspect of its methods.  Scientists experiment and test, compare notes, repeat experiments, theorize - all in an attempt to make sure that what we know is actually true.

Philosophy is one of the fundamentals of wizardry because it opens you to higher understanding of the world, the cosmos, and your own mind.   Socrates said that he knew nothing because no smidgen of knowledge is ever absolutely certain.  We take everything, at some level, on faith.

Pause for thought about that. Write down your answer to the following question:

Who do you trust to tell you the truth about the world and yourself?

So you Want to be a Gold Wizard: Preview

Time and Energy! By creating your own magickal tools, you imbibe each item with lots of personal energy. Each stitch, each bead, each knot can hold meaning if you want it to just by concentration and intent.  Buying an item made by another is quick and sometimes just the thing to do. I have plenty of purchased items in my magickal treasure chest, but when I make an item myself, each time I use it I can feel the power from it.  I know where the materials came from. I can remember finding that perfect bead or the thrill of spying the exact color of material from across the room—on sale!—or even comforting my sadness of having to cut down a tree when I saw the perfect staff in one of the fallen branches. Making magickal tools takes time and patience and a little bit of skill that can be developed with practice, but the rewards are endless. 

If you can read a ruler, watch a video, and invest a few hours of time, you can be a crafty person too.

 Now, when I was working on one of my early projects to create a book, I would focus on the task and imagine or visualize all the things I wanted to use it for. I could see it as a Book of Shadows in a way. I can hold spells in the pockets or lists of correspondences I need.  It will hold the results of my experiments.  I could create one just for herbs and their constituents. With each cut, I would think of how I would be using it and, more importantly, how I would feel when I picked it up and used it for my magickal life.  I was empowering the little book with my own personal energy of hopes and dreams. That scrapbook fairly glows with magickal energy now and that is something no one can buy.

With the use of hand, mind, and spirit, magickal practices helped me create a new magickal tool.

So you Want to be a Green Wizard: Preview

If you have the space to do so, you can become what I would call an A to Z Green Wizard: growing your own plants in an organic garden (even a container garden!) or wildcrafting in safe places, taking care of the plants, noting down the relevant information for optimum growth and potency, harvesting them using magick besides your tools, researching their properties and history and then using them in medicinal, culinary or magickal preparations... The classes you take in the Wortcunning department can teach you all this, and much more. I know no better way to begin drafting your own magickal correspondences for each plant you work with. 

A series of Herbal Formulary classes will help you get better acquainted with at least five common plants, and many more if you choose to. They will allow you to explore a single plant as a whole – its constituents, ethnobotany, medicinal and magickal uses, recipes, its needs and the best moments to harvest it. Those common plants are treasures – you will look at nettle, thyme, garlic in a different way (they are my top three plants!). Those Herbal Formulary classes are part of the Major and Minors. 

Several classes related to the history of wortcunning will help you look back and learn from our ancestors. Back when survival was the only thought in the human mind, knowledge of plants was the only way to eat, heal and even hunt. We would be in extreme trouble today if we had to survive with nothing at all in the wildest places – we have lost this precious knowledge. Regaining some of it is the least we can do. 

Let's explore the Wortcunning department together, then!

So you Want to be a Yellow Wizard: Preview

“Divination is a power in man which foresees and explains those signs which the gods throw in his way…” ~Chrysippus (Cic. De Divinat. II.63)

A Yellow Wizard is a diviner, a soothsayer, an oracle. A Yellow Wizard sees without seeing, finds order in chaos, and predicts the unpredictable.

The word divination comes from the Latin word divinare meaning to predict, which in turn comes from divi, meaning gods. Cicero defined it as, “the foresight and knowledge of future events.”

Those with the ability to divine the future have been with us through all ages and all places. There were diviners in Egypt in the second millennium BCE and in China in 1600 BCE. In Greece in the second century BCE there were the mantis (plural of mantike), and the sibyls or oracles of Pythia, Dodona, and Delphi. In Rome there were diviners and augurs. The early Celts had Druids and vates, pre-Columbian Mexico had chilanes, Tibet has kuten.

Today, in the West, seers are likely to be called fortunetellers, astrologers, and readers. But by any name, we are still seers, because we see what others can’t or won’t.

Divination is both a skill and a talent. It is much like music. There are very few people who are so tone deaf that they cannot be taught music. But the range of musical ability goes from mechanical to promising amateur to virtuoso. If you can read the text in the Little White Book that comes with a Tarot or oracle deck, you can be a diviner.

Divination can be as simple as dropping a needle on a string over a friend’s palm to see if her baby will be a boy or a girl. It can be as intricate as charting the positions of the planets at the time of birth and comparing them to those right now. In this class we will brush the surface of the seer’s art.

So you Want to be a Orange Wizard: Preview

Orange Wizards, also known as Conjurers, are the keepers of the gate between that of Magick and of the Mundane.  They are the ones who suspend the moment of disbelief and open the doors to the realm of Magick for those mundies who've never found magick on their own.  It is the job of an Orange Wizard to enchant the world and to bring Magick into the mundane and ordinary.

Children are the most receptive when it comes to magick because they always use their imaginations, and they use it easily, whereas adults have forgotten how to tap into their imagination because they see it as childish, so they put it behind them.  The Orange Wizard is always there to bring out the inner child of the adults as well.  Every child wants to learn magick, or at least be enchanted by magick or hold special powers of some sort.  The Orange Wizard is there to provide that service.

It is the sole purpose of the Orange Wizard to attract the attention of the audience members and show them that anything is possible.  A really good Orange Wizard would grab the audience by the lapels (figuratively speaking of course) and throw them into the realm of Magic!  

Orange Wizards are known to be proficient in at least one of these disciplines:

Bardic Arts



Let’s start with the Bard: 

In Druidry, the Bard is one of the three classes of Druidic hierarchy.  Bards are the storytellers, and singers, and they are the ones most gifted in music—either instrumental or vocal (or both).  

Bards have a rich history that goes back thousands of years throughout many different cultures; and because the Bard was famous, the role of a bard remained the same throughout all that time: they were the poets and musicians.  They were hired by kings and rulers to sing praises of their great works.  They were the ones who weaved magick into the music and lyrical poetry of days gone by, and still do today.

So you Want to be a Red Wizard: Preview

Alchemy is also referred to as the First Science, Hermetic Science, Proto Science, and the Great Work, as this esoteric pursuit can be considered a precursor to modern chemistry, biology, physics, medicine, and psychology, however, at the core, alchemy is an amalgamation of science and spiritual beliefs to instill transformation and transmutation. Even the great alchemist and wizard Paracelsus (1493-1541) coined the term “iatrochemistry,” while seeking a modern and viable application of alchemy, which was in the service of medicine. He and other pioneers of alchemy have inspired the creation of magickal sciences, as practitioners always approached their goals with some sense of the scientific method, be it esoteric or physical.

While the Philosophers Stone remained elusive for these pioneers of modern science, as the creation of the periodic table was not even postulated and alternative forms of energy had not been discovered and utilized, today it is possible to transmute lesser elements; such as mercury and bismuth (and other elements) into gold using nuclear energy.

In the natural world gold is believed to be created from the process of stellar nucleosynthesis, in which natural occurring nuclear reactions during star formation or destruction (supernova) release enough energy to create heavy elements—all elements with an atomic weight greater than 64 (metals).3

There is an important distinction to consider, in the context of what alchemy is or is not. Esoteric alchemy, whose hidden secrets were revealed only to chosen adepts, and the exoteric, pseudo-alchemy, which is depicted as the haphazardly craft of mercenary gold seekers (puffers), who toiled recklessly at their furnaces, hoping to produce gold by working only with “external fires” and never working on the spiritual level of manifestation from within. Unfortunately, most people associate alchemy with the work of the “puffers,” thus some would suggest the “Black Art” (referencing the first stage of the four original phases of alchemy) has lost the appeal that it possessed centuries years ago. While the achievements of ancient alchemy, which harken back to the ancient practices of metallurgy, creating bronze from copper and tin and steel from iron and charcoal are important technological breakthroughs. When the entire goal of the alchemist is focused on material wealth or gain the balance of the system is skewed and the spiritual growth of the practitioner will cease to expand. Certainly, attempting to transmute a lesser base material into gold (or other noble metals) is the practical process of alchemy, however, the alchemist must find a balance to remain in or to achieve harmony.

So you Want to be a Rose Wizard: Preview

Lofty art of weaving webs from

love and hope, binding with

laughter and good cheer, of

learning to dance with life and

leave a brilliant light behind.

Lifeways is the art of

living life to its fullest.

     --Cala Gobraith, 2005  


That pretty much sums up what Lifeways is all about! Literally translated, ‘lifeways’ means ‘a way of life’. It is all about how you live your life, what your values and goals are, and how you go about acting upon or achieving them.

Rose Wizards are those who specialize in interpersonal relationships, cultural awareness, communication skills and life improvement skills. Rose Wizards may have specialized skills such as NLP (neuro-linguistic programming), NVC (non-violent communication), verbal self-defense, goal-setting, organization, leadership, and life-coaching. General life ethics are also the purview of the Rose Wizard.

Rose Wizards are web-weavers. To be a Rose Wizard is to be one who teaches others how to live in a community, the one who helps others learn to interact in a harmonious fashion, the one who looks after the weak and wounded of heart. It is to be a messenger of peace and an advocate for those who cannot speak for themselves.

What resources should a Rose Wizard possess? Nothing, actually. A Rose Wizard's true toolkit is their personality and empathy. They cultivate a kind heart, filled with compassion. They possess a child-like sense of wonder in all humanity has to offer. They cut through the misery to see the very best humanity has to offer. They reach out with an open mind to welcome all cultures and ways of being. They have the patience and temperance to be a good communicator, mediator, and facilitator. They practice the magick of Diplomacy.

So you Want to be a Brown Wizard: Preview

Many Brown Wizards have devoted their lives to studying animals and animal behavior (ethology). These researchers try to answer the question of “Why does this animal behave in this way?” Most researchers focus on studying one species of animals to the point of becoming the ultimate expert on just this species, such as a herpetologist who studies reptiles and amphibians, an ornithologist who studies birds, an ichthyologist who studies fish, or a zoologist who studies animals in general. Other researchers study one species at a time, so as not to divert and dilute their focus of study. At times, though, a certain behavior is observed in several species, and a researcher may instead focus on a certain behavior as the focus of her studies and trying to identify this behavior in several species. 

Another common specialty among Brown Wizards is the art of healing. Healers of animals come in many forms, encompassing both modern mainstream veterinary medicine as well as naturopathic and alternative medicine approaches. Areas open to veterinarians include preventive medicine (medicine to keep animals healthy, and not just dealing with sick ones.) Positions include work in research settings and can focus on large animals, small animals, exotic animals, as well as pretty much the same subspecialties as are open to biologists. The work settings include owning or working in a veterinary clinic, work at private or public zoos, working in university settings as researchers and lecturers, and even working for the military or police. 

Many Brown Wizards find a calling to serve as animal trainers or handlers. There is a difference between animal trainers and animal handlers; although in many cases the same person performs both jobs. The animal trainer is the person who teaches the animal a behavior it is supposed to learn. Most everybody has probably heard about dog obedience school. The people who run these classes are animal trainers. You may also have heard of the Dog Whisperer, a reality show in the United States featuring Cesar Millan who works with dogs that have been non-receptive and non-responsive to other dog obedience training methods. Take, as another example, the training of guide dogs for the blind, which are also known as Seeing Eye dogs. The trainers are those adults and youth who raise the puppies and help socialize them, as well as those who will later on teach the specific service-related skills. The handler, though, will ultimately be the blind person whom the dog is trained to help or work alongside.

So you Want to be a Clear Wizard: Preview

Wizards have something in common with mathematicians: did you know that the numeric symbols of today, and many of the operations we perform on them, were once condemned as "diabolical?"

During the Dark Ages (circa 500-1000 CE), most Western Europeans who worked with numbers used Greek or Roman numerals, and did their work with engraved figures or other physical counting tools, like an abacus (these early mathematicians were, in fact, called abacists). It was cumbersome, time-consuming, and difficult to learn.

The Arabians in the Middle East, though, had come up with some new tricks that made math less "clunky." They had methods that made numbers easier to write and manipulate. During the Crusades (1095-1291 CE), when Western rulers conducted their religious military campaigns on the Middle East, people from both sides came in contact with each other, and as a result, the mathematical knowledge trickled through. Western accountants learned the tricks that made their jobs much easier: numbers could be symbolized by a few inked symbols (rather than engraved in stone or represented by "counters"); there were new, more efficient ways of performing operations; and the introduction of Zero made all of the operations much easier.

The Catholic Church held the greatest power in the Western world during that time, and they got to make the rules for Science, Philosophy and Education. Their main rule was: keep it away from the public! They were loathe to allow knowledge to seep out of the Church walls and infiltrate society. The Arabic math was so easy to learn that just about anyone could do it, and that meant that -- ugh! -- commoners could learn to do math, and that could lead them down all kinds of sinful paths. Church leaders knew that curious, intelligent people are harder to control. If they can be kept from doing too much thinking, they're pretty docile and tend to follow orders blindly. (Think about that next time you see someone staring at the television for hours on end.)

"The control of knowledge served not to liberate the intellect, but to restrict its scope for several centuries, and was the cause of several tragedies. Some ecclesiastical authorities thus put it about that arithmetic in the Arabic manner, precisely because it was so easy and ingenious, reeked of magic and of the diabolical: it must have come from Satan himself!" (Ifrah 588)

So you Want to be a White Wizard: Preview

The first myth to dispel is the popular distinction between White Magick and Black Magick as Good Magick or Bad Magick. At GSW the White Department is that of Ceremonial Magick and the Black Department is Dark Arts. In no way is one better than the other. In no way is one right and the other wrong. Just as you will see in the next lesson regarding High and Low Magick, one is not superior to the other. This misconception is actually brought about by a Western misunderstanding of what Left- and Right-Hand Path means. That explanation is beyond the scope here but it is a point to recognize.

The second misconception is that ceremonial magicians, White Wizards, are a bunch of stuffy, old people wearing woolen robes in dark rooms. While it's true we love a wooly robe as much as the next Wizard, White Wizards come from all ages, races, cultures, religions, and from every corner of the globe. They practice in dark candle-lit rooms, on mountaintops and everywhere in between. 

There is no rule regarding who can and cannot be a White Wizard. We are diverse in who we are and what we practice. 


You might have heard that White Wizards are all about the books and studying - that it is overly intellectualized. Partly true, we do love our books. There can be a good deal of study involved. However, it is not all about that. The one who gets bogged down in the study and forgets the practice is no longer a White Wizard but rather what we call an “armchair magician.” This is not a term of endearment.

Some people think that ceremonial magick is all about lofty pursuits and spiritual enlightenment. It can be about that but there are also practical applications in the world around us – as we shall discuss.  

So you Want to be a Grey Wizard: Preview

So... what is 'lore' exactly?  According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, lore is 'something that is taught or learned, that which is gained through study or experience or that which is traditional belief or knowledge.'

Lorekeepers are storytellers, historians, and poets. They are the ones who keep our myths and legends alive. They are the custodians of the past and the architects of the future. Lorekeepers enjoy learning and are students of history, of culture, and of how those things have shaped us, and how they are still important to us today. A good Lorekeeper has a solid grounding in mythology, in stories and legends from around the world, in the history of bygone eras, and in cultural traditions and customs. Lorekeepers may also be ‘world-walkers’, which is how I prefer to think of the people who are constantly crafting new stories and new myths. They open the door to new worlds that they might share them with others. You will often find Lorekeepers are also archivists and they tend to have vast libraries devoted to their favorite fields of study.

What personal resources should a Lorekeeper have? A sense of wonder and appreciation for history, myth, legend, and all manner of lore, of course! A love for walking the worlds of the past and present. A love for opening doors to new worlds, if you are a writer or film-maker. Seems that would go without saying. Lorekeepers also need a broad base of information, especially in their areas of personal expertise. Lastly, Lorekeepers should have a desire to advance the field of Lorekeeping, either by adding to it or by teaching future generations of Lorekeepers.

Being a Lorekeeper means dedicating yourself as a keeper of the old ways, a custodian of the past. Lorekeepers serve by collecting, sorting, refining, and analyzing information and then sharing it with others. Lorekeepers also generate new data and information. As with any other field, Lorekeepers may be specialized. One may be a storyteller, keeping the old tales alive. One may be an archivist, a researcher, or a writer. The possibilities are endless.

So you Want to be a Black Wizard: Preview

When people think about the Dark Arts, they tend to imagine gnarled old men and women peering over a bubbling black cauldron deep in a cave with a raven looking down on them from a shelf. Images from popular movies, books, and television shows reinforce this stereotype by portraying the Dark Arts as mysterious, forbidden, and evil.

Macbeth shows three witches as hags that manipulate the title character to his doom; in Snow White the evil queen uses dark potions to try and kill the protagonist; in The Craft we see a group of teen witches using magick selfishly to get whatever they want, heedless of the consequences. Compelling as those images may be—they are fiction. The Dark Arts are not about cackling and bending the world to your will, although we Black Wizards may enjoy a good cackle now and again.


The study of the Dark Arts is about exploring the furthest reaches of the magickal world, shedding light in the darkest of corners. We do this out of a thirst for knowledge and a need to know what's out there—both so that we can defend ourselves against things that might do us harm, and just to know. We learn how to use magick to improve our lives and the lives of our loved ones out of a desire to do good and a need to know that we are doing all that we can, not just the simple desire for power. We hold ourselves to the highest possible ethical standards and show respect for the free will and value of all living things.

Here at the Grey School of Wizardry, the Dark Arts consist of three basic areas of study: Defense Against the Dark Arts, Creatures of the Night, and Low Magick. A Dark Arts major must have a thorough understanding of all three areas of study. In Defense Against the Dark Arts classes, students learn how to protect themselves and others from the effects of negative energy and the attentions of malevolent metaphysical creatures using techniques such as shielding and cleansings.

Our Creatures of the Night classes teach Apprentices about some of the many paranormal creatures that people often find frightening or dangerous, such as ghost, vampires, and demons. In our Low Magick classes, students can learn practical techniques for using magick to affect the material world, such as sympathetic and contagion magicks. Each of these areas of study will be explored in detail further on in this class.

Indigo Wizard
Gold Wizard
Yellow Wizard
Orange Wizard
Red Wizard
Rose Wizard
Brown Wizard
Clear Wizard
White Wizard
Grey Wizard
Black Wizard

Ready to Begin Your Studies?

For some the word "Wizard" conjures up images of make-believe, or the stuff of fantasy and legend.

However as you've seen here, Wizardry is quite the academic affair!   While anyone is welcome to walk this path, it is not necessarily a path for everyone; After all, the world needs Heroes as well!

The trade of Wizardry is a time-consuming one to be sure and if  fireballs and lightning bolts are your goal you'll be sorely disappointed.

No, it is hard work and it takes time as well as study to learn all that now lies before you.

Though, for those who find that they have what it takes, there are few more rewarding arts than ours.

As Wizards we build up the world around us, drawing our dreams into reality and inspiring others to reach the best version of themselves. 

Now that you've had a taste of what GSW has to offer we look forward to seeing you join us for the full version of these classes soon!

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