In the tradition of modern Paganism, known as Wicca, casting a spell depends on ritual, timing and the strength of the caster's will. Preparation and focus are emphasized, as is the clearing of negative energy and the invitation of positive energy.
Wicca is only one of the many traditions of magic practiced around the world. Hoodoo and other traditions with non-Western origins have different frameworks within which spells may be cast or rituals enacted.
There is no single ritual process for casting a spell. It is important for the caster to find their own process that gives strength to their personal powers and focuses and that suits their capabilities. Burning incense, meditating, inscribing runes and other practices are common. Also common is the invocation of various gods according to personal preference. Once these things are in place the caster must focus upon the result they desire. The further this casting is from the crucial moment at which this result could materialize or collapse, the more likely it is, practitioners claim, that the result will be favorable to the caster.
An important concept in the practice of magic is the threefold law. This law holds that when magic is done to the good, that is charitably, selflessly or helpfully, the benefits will return threefold. The reverse is true for magic cast to harm. The Wiccan Rede, a commonly followed law, is the precept that actions which harm no one are the only spells permissible to cast.