Reinventing witchcraft

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Back to Article

Reinventing witchcraft

Photo by Abby Jarecki

Photo by Abby Jarecki

Photo by Abby Jarecki

Abby Jarecki and Jackie LaMastra

Is there magic in this world? Do witches exist? Can a material item like a crystal affect your well-being or help you de-stress?

Especially leading up to Halloween, you may find yourself pondering these questions. Luckily, you do not need to travel far to see these practices in action.

In the heart of downtown Westfield and Cranford, small businesses like Psychic Boutique, Just Bead Yourself and Witch Baby Soap focus on using crystals and other spiritual essentials to alter one’s mindset for self-improvement.

Whether you believe in witchcraft or not, it’s important to recognize that many people don’t use mystical products as a solution or a quick fix, but rather a way to catalyze a positive attitude.

Cheslea Selby, self-proclaimed witch and owner of Witch Baby Soap, acknowledges that her crystal-inspired, herb-based bath products won’t automatically cure your stress or anxiety, but “visualizing the negativity coming off your body and swirling down the drain” can help you get in the state of mind to focus on and love yourself.

Throughout Selby’s life, she has explored her identity as a witch and channeled this into her business, which focuses on healing your inner and outer self rather than fixing your imperfections. She uses her background in cosmetics and alternative medicine related to witchcraft to create certain energies for her products, helping people connect with and appreciate their bodies.

Selby’s store isn’t exclusive to witches like herself: “We have products that cater to everyone, because everyone wants or needs to get in touch with their intuition.”   

An article from webmd.com reports  that Americans spend over $30 billion a year on alternative medicine like Selby’s practices. It’s clear this healing can come in many different forms: one of them being crystals.

Just Bead Yourself focuses on wearable energy, where clients come in and receive energy tests to see which gemstones make them feel empowered. After performing muscle tests to analyze which stones give the customer the most power, they make jewelry using the results, creating the perfect combination of style and strength.

WHS senior Francesca Cella, a Just Bead Yourself employee, says that crystals offer a different type of rehabilitation. “It’s a way to heal yourself naturally without taking a pill prescribed by a doctor, while learning a new way of life,” said Cella.

It may be difficult to imagine that stones can empower people and make them feel stronger, but in order for crystals to make an impact, one must keep an open mind. Cella noted that many Just Bead Yourself customers begin to see the power of crystals after taking an energy test. “After seeing the physical reaction your body gets from the stone,” Cella said, “you [can] make sense of what the stones are doing to you.”

As a way to stay centered, several WHS students utilize these remedies on their own. WHS senior Regan Schultz uses and meditates with crystals to “get [herself] in the right mindset to stay grounded.” These crystals remind her of her strength.

Whether you believe in the supernatural or not, getting in a healthy state of mind begins with you. Only you can open yourself up to trying new de-stressing methods or adding witchcraft into your daily routine. “There’s no set of written books on witchcraft,” Selby said. “You just have to see what calls to you and do that.”