Paramount to any successful spell casting in an internal knowledge that what you are attempting is possible, that it can work, and that you have the ability to do it.
I’m not talking about boastful arrogance. It isn’t cocky. It’s a strong, inner confidence that comes from knowing who you are, and what you want to achieve.
When a witch knows, she knows that not only can spells work but that she has the knowledge and experience and power enough to make it work.
I think that some confuse this internal knowing with theoretical knowledge. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for learning our history as Pagans and as witches. I love picking up and looking through books of spells and folk remedies for ideas. I think it important that one has a basic understanding of our Pagan history and of the culture we both came from and that we live within. It saves a lot of time and trouble re-inventing the proverbial wheel.
It’s even more important that you take what you know and apply it to your own Pagan practice in some way. (Even if it’s to say, I’m not doing it that way because…)
When a witch knows, this spills over into the non-magical side of her life as well. She knows that she has the knowledge and experience and power enough to accomplish whatever she sets out to do. And where she might be lacking, she knows that she has the intelligence enough to learn.
She knows when something is beyond her knowledge or beyond her ability, and she has the confidence enough in knowing herself to be able to admit this and ask others for help.
She knows that sometimes, just because she can do something it doesn’t automatically follow that she has to do something. Or that she should.
And sometimes, a witch has to know when to fake confidence in order to help those around her hold onto their own confidence. As a teacher I once had in the noble art of fencing once told me: When line judging, even if you think you might be wrong, be wrong with confidence. You’ll convince others that you are right.