Guest post by Kyros
The trickiest part of dealing with curses isn’t breaking the curse (that part is usually straightforward) but rather detecting if or how we’ve been cursed. There are a few signs we want to look for to see if we’ve been cursed: the effects of a curse, a person who wants to and is able to curse, and the artifacts of a curse. It is easy at times to blame unfortunate events on curses, but in assessing if we’re cursed it is important to remain as objective as possible.
The first key to detecting a curse, which is usually the reason people start looking for a curse, are the effects. As previously mentioned in Part One, there are two key categories for curses: Entropy Curses and Targeted Curses. Targeted Curses are generally easier to detect, because they tend to be a retributive style of curse: if the target is a cheater and they find themselves being cheated on, well, that hints at a curse. Again, it definitely doesn’t mean for sure that it’s a curse, but it hints at it.
Entropy Curses tend to be harder to detect. Bad luck can be just bad luck. When trying to track down an Entropy Curse, you’re looking for a really unlikely continuous bad run of luck. Also understand, that’s not definitive, just a likelihood.
The second key to discovering and determining a curse is to consider if we’re likely to be the target of a curse. Everyone has enemies, but we want to analyze if we have any enemies who are able, or friends who are able. People have to be able to cast magick in order to cast curses with significant power, or they at least need to have some power in their veins. As practitioners, we have the ability to detect that (or, we should), and we need to consider who is near us and who has that ability and power. It’s important to consider motive as well, but we also need to consider that motives are complex and we may not be able to ascertain motive easily.
The final key to discovering and detecting a curse is the presence of artifacts, both physical and magickal. Casting a curse often involves either taking a personal possession of someone, or placing something near where they are. When taking something, the more personal it is and the more charged it is with their energy, the more powerfully the curse will cling to them. If you feel you may have been targeted, look for something important that’s missing. It may be a favorite piece of jewelry, a watch, a cellphone, something that has a lot of emotional ties like a picture, or most importantly, a magickal tool or stone (or a charm).
Alternatively, the caster may have placed something near you. Ideally (for them) it’s near where you spend most of your time, like your bed, or in your room, but more often this is in your yard. Look for something out of place; often times this is something iron, like nails, or something disgusting. A common curse involves a jar filled with bugs, bones, excrement, and nails. You’re looking for something nasty.
Magickally, curses leave artifacts, usually in the form of negative energy. To those who are sufficiently sensitive, you may be able to feel this outright. Others will feel this in the sense of being watched, or something nasty hanging around. Others may need the usual divinatory methods such as tarot, scrying, or whatever else.
If you have at least two of these key elements, then you are probably cursed, especially if you have the third proposed element. If you have all three, then you are definitely cursed. If you have only one element, then you probably want to keep looking, or consider other explanations for what’s been occurring.