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The Witching Hour...

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posted on Oct, 15 2017 @ 05:21 AM

Since I was already up, at 3a.m., for the second night in a row, without any reason to be, and feeling quite pissy about it, I thought I'd look up a term that I tend to hear a bit more this time of year... The Witching Hour.

Insomnia aside, if it is insomnia, I'm thinking it is some sort of hellish torment, some type of karma I need to pay back for an evil deed I committed. Only the truly evil would wake someone out of a dead sleep at such an early hour, maybe I've been cursed, I dunno, something is a miss though, that's for sure. Anyhow, I thought I'd look it up, you know, in case I need to burn sage or something. This is what I found out:

How it all Started

’Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn, and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world: now could I drink hot blood
And do such bitter business as the day
Would quake to look on. ...

Yep, apparently Shakespeare came up with the idea in the 1600's. He thought the midnight hour was the time that evil was most powerful. Mentioned in Hamlet above and also A Midsummer Night's Dream:

THESEUS: The iron tongue of midnight hath told twelve.
Lovers, to bed; ’tis almost fairy time.
PUCK: Now it is the time of night
That the graves, all gaping wide,
Every one lets forth his sprite. ...

Mary Robinson refers to "the Witching Hour" in the 1800's as well. Those are the earliest writings I've come across referencing it. But, according to some websites, it began much the days shortly before the European witch hunts. And, it was originally thought to be between the hours of 3 and 4 a.m.

Now Midnight spreads her sable vest
With starry rays light tissued o'er;
Now from the Desart's thistled breast
The chilling dews begin to soar;
The owl shrieks from the tott'ring tow'r,
Dread watch bird of the witching hour! ...

The term was coined back in 1560 by pope John Paul II. It started out in Europe and then spread world wide from there, eventually making its way to the Americas just in time for the Salem witch trials.

A couple reasons given for why it was introduced. The churches Canonical prayers usually lasted 3-4 hours. During the hours of 3-4 in the morning there were no prayers being offered, which is the time frame that evil would be at it strongest.

Of course anyone who was up and out on the streets during this time must be witches or goblins, or something evil. So therefore, they were charged with such crimes and put to death ...

The second reason was that 3 a.m. is supposedly an overt mockery to Christ's death. As Christ died at 3 p.m. , the devil chose 3 a.m. to basically give him the finger. Also, it is said that it is to mock the holy trinity. But, when you are talking about that stuff, the label of The Witching Hour changes to The devils hour, which gets really confusing. Anyhow, back to the whole mocking the church thing:

The Christian belief says that the hour, three in the morning, is apparently the mockery hour of Jesus's death. As Christ died at 3 pm, the Devil chose 3 am to unleash his demons and spirits. Since most Western civilizations follow Christianity, the dead hour of 3 am has become a phenomenon.
There are some arguments against the 3 a.m. theory if you read the article linked. Time Zones, more deaths at 3 a.m. than any other time, how Hollywood incorporated it into their movies, etc. But then again, this was known/invented way before time zones and Hollywood I think. So I don't know if any of those are valid arguments.

Personal Note: ok, really creepy. I was writing this and the computer clock just showed 3:33 a.m. At that exact moment, my guitar, which is hanging on the wall, just had one string plucked. I am going with a moth. But it still freaked me out.

What it Means For Witches

Besides the obvious witch hunts and death from histories past, does the witching hour hold any real significance to witches? In the encyclopedia of Witchcraft there is a definition for it:

“The hour of midnight on the night of the full moon. This is a time of transformation and change and the height of witches’ spell-casting powers. The roots of this notion go back to ancient times, to the worship of goddesses associated with the Moon, fertility, and witchcraft. As the Moon waxes in its phases, so do the powers associated with it and its deities, until the culminate at the full moon”...
So, it does have some significance. But the hour of midnight is referenced for them. Which is not 3 a.m. And very sneaky if true, because you have the witch hunters out looking for you at 3 a.m., while you've done your thing and are at home in bed sleeping way before then.

The witches hour for modern witches is associated with a time that the veil between worlds is weakest and their spells and rituals will be the strongest. It is at zero hour or midnight. A time when tomorrow becomes today and today is yesterday. ..a time between times.

In history, this has been said to be the best time to perform their craft because of the secrecy needed to do so. Yes, I am talking about the witch hunts and slayings of old. Witches can perform their magic at any time of the day, but to do so back then would mean certain death. So, it is thought that maybe this was the designated hour for them to be witches without any fear of practicing their craft.

I haven't been able to find any in depth information around the moon goddess and the witching hour, just slight references. Maybe a person who has experience in that area will be able to tell us more.

edit on 15-10-2017 by blend57 because: word limits..I dun like them

posted on Oct, 15 2017 @ 05:22 AM

What is it Then?

It seems to be many different things to many different groups. I've only touched on a couple of them really. There is the paranormal world, religious beliefs, Hollywood movie industry and probably a few other groups I left out of the mix. There is also the scientific explanations I haven't touched at all. Our sleeping cycles and how we are more susceptible to other worldly spirits while we sleep during this time...too much to really cover in a thread penned out at 3 a.m.

I will say that there is one theme that seems to be recurring no matter what time you view the witching hour to be. It is thought to be the darkest hours of the night, the time when we are at our most vulnerable in the mind, a time when we aren't able to see as clearly as we normally would. Some people I guess would say it is a time when we see more clearly than normal.

Hopefully someone can add their own experiences or knowledge to this. I really haven't figured out what The Witching Hour truly is. Maybe it is as I said, different things to different people. Maybe I am getting two different things mixed up (Devils hour, witching hour)... maybe it has just morphed into many different things. But so far, this is the information I've been able to gather.

For me, as I sit here writing this, all I know is that it's a perfect setting to be reading about it. The weather outside is classic fall. Dark and dreary, a soft rain falling, leaves blowing in a strong wind. A silence and stillness you can only find in the darkest hours of the night, the only sound my tapping the keys on the keyboard and the grandfathers clock striking each hour away as the night fades into dawn.

I'm gonna go turn on some lights and maybe listen to a podcast as I wait for the early light of dawn. Probably investigate my guitar and see why it did what it did. I am very sure it was a bug, yep... a moth or something.

As always, thanks for reading

posted on Oct, 15 2017 @ 05:54 AM
Almost every single night that I am unable to sleep, I fall into a paralyzed state and am visited by a terrifying being at exactly 3:07. Sometimes she speaks to me and before she leaves she touches me. Every cell in my body is overwhelmed by adrenaline and sheer terror but I am completely powerless to move. I believe that she feeds off of this fear and have recently come to understand that she is a being named Lilith. I can always sense her presence at the edges of my senses for a while before she appears, and no matter how awake I am I fall into this trance-like state. While it seems like hours the whole encounter is over after a couple minutes. Sometimes I also experience terrifying visions and, rarely, premonitions throughout the whole thing.

posted on Oct, 15 2017 @ 06:17 AM

off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


posted on Oct, 15 2017 @ 08:06 AM
Nice thread. Very interesting.


Only the truly evil would wake someone out of a dead sleep at such an early hour,

Sorry. I haven't been sleeping well for a couple of weeks now and I get lonely.

posted on Oct, 15 2017 @ 10:36 AM
3AM is highlighted because that is the hour the earth is turned farthest from the sun. Since it is thought demons can't tolerate light, that would be the time their powers are greatest.

I think this is more symbolic. I think the real witchery is hidden in dark places, but thats just so people won't see. Incantations, spells, makings, charms, curses, etc., can be accomplished anytime.

Having said that I came across a weird bit of trivia about one date in Germany, referred to as Witches Sabbath, occurring on May 1st. Has to do with pagan holidays and rituals stemming from Medieval Times; steeped in mystery, discussed in here.


The current online version of EB (in the article "Walburga, Saint") uses a capitalized "Night": "On Walpurgis Night—the eve of May 1, the day on which her relics were taken to Eichstätt—witches are believed to rendezvous in the Harz mountains."

Someone seems to have removed all reference to LaVey and Satanism from the article. Since this is a documented holiday in the Satanic Bible, surely it deserves a mention?. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:43, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
I agree, Walpurgisnacht is an "official" holiday in the Satanic calendar, therefore should be mentioned. SImply becuase some people may not agree with the tennets of Satanism, does not mean it should be ommited from here --Grindlyth (talk) 18:06, 30 April 2009 (UTC)

Hitler's suicide on April 30 and his command to have his body burned was no 'coincidence' - There Are No Coincidences (there is synchronism).

I got interested in this when I discovered my Grandfather was born on April 30, was a German soldier in Both World Wars, and a card carrying member of the Nazi Party.

Jeepers creepers

edit on 15-10-2017 by intrptr because: spelling

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