In traditional Gardnerian Wicca, the tools are often divided into personal tools, which are for use by, and owned by, an individual Wiccan, and coven tools, used collectively by the coven. This practice may derive partly from Masonic traditions (such as the use of the Square and Compasses), from which Wicca draws some material, and partly from the rituals of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. The latter made much use of material from Medieval Grimoires such as the Key of Solomon, which has many illustrations of magical tools and instructions for their preparation. In Wicca, ritual tools are used during rituals which both honour the deities, and work magic. The general idea is that the tool directs psychic energies to perform a certain action.
Wiccan tools are usually only used by their owner (or, in the case of coven tools, by the coven as a group), to ensure that they only carry their owner's spiritual vibrations.
In Gardnerian Wicca, as layed down by Gerald Gardner, someone who had been initiated in the 1st degree had to create (or, alternately purchase and then engrave) their own ritual tools. One of the requirements for being initiated for the 2nd degree is that the Wiccan had to name all of the ritual tools and explain what their purpose and associations were.
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