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During these unpredictable times, it’s natural to turn to alternative sources of power. That’s what Missy Rhysing and her crew of witches, spiritual counselors, and healers are here for.
Rhysing owns five-year-old Ritualcravt in Wheat Ridge, a metaphysical and witchcraft store where you can buy everything from ritual oils—to enhance clarity or protect yourself against envy and dressing candles to amplify your personal power or promote good health—to tobacco-free herbal cigarettes to soothe emotional unrest.
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Thanks to the growing popularity of unconventional spiritual traditions like astrology, tarot, and using crystals for various intentions, witchcraft is having a moment in the mainstream—and the idea that witches are pointy-hat-wearing broom riders who come out on Halloween is ancient history. Ritualcravt’s “House Witches,” who handcraft the shop’s tinctures, candles, and teas on-site, are modern and approachable, as are its 11 healers and readers who offer tarot and astrology readings, integrative massage, guided energy healing sessions, and more.
Like many businesses, Ritualcravt shut its doors to comply with mandated closures due to COVID-19 and briefly offered curbside pick-up of its products until transitioning entirely to online sales in late March. While Rhysing says sales aren’t anywhere near where they were before the coronavirus shutdowns, there’s still a good amount of interest in the shop’s services.
“Of course people are being more careful with their money right now, but they’re also being selective and spending on things that are community-minded,” she says. “During this time, I think keeping up with self care while learning and remembering who we are to avoid getting sucked into the fear is important.”
Ritualcravt was born as an online store in early 2015, when Rhysing was also working as a tattoo artist (she is the former part owner of Ritual Tattoo shop). Her products were so popular that she opened a storefront in Sunnyside in 2016 and moved the business to its current Wheat Ridge location in May 2019. The beautiful, 4,000-square-foot space is stocked with products, from books on self-love and spirituality to crystals, perfumes, and colognes, and ethically sourced animal feathers. It also has a production studio where products are created; a full apothecary with more than 100 herbs and resins (a viscous substance typically extracted from plants); and a school featuring a variety of classes and workshops on topics such as herbalism and astrology.
The shop typically offers sessions with readers and healers at its storefront six days a week, but you can now book a spiritual counselor online for a remote session via phone, FaceTime, or Skype (rates can range from $22 for a 15-minute astrology reading to $144 for a psychic session). Rhysing urges first-timers to check out the counselors’ bios on the store’s website to find the person who best suits their needs. “It’s a really fun and enlightening experience, particularly in times of uncertainty. They are just normal people who are very intuitive and approachable,” she says.
So, is witchcraft for you? Because what it means to be a “witch” varies from person to person, it depends on your personal preferences and beliefs, whether you’re a devotee to Wiccan magic or trust in natural elements like minerals and plants to influence change. “There isn’t a specific dogma you have to abide by,” says Rhysing, who was introduced to witchcraft when she was 18. “It’s really a spiritual choice.”
These days, when normalcy seems so out of reach, there seems like no better time than the present to tap into something magical.