Thursday, July 07, 2005

Magical Ritual (cont.)

Continuing the discussion of magical rituals, here is the list of components that I have found to be common of magical rituals:

* Purification
* Circle Casting
* Wording
* Tools
* Spell Components
* Energy Raising
* Intent or Will

I had talked about purification in my post regarding religious rituals. There are several ways for purification, and I had mentioned one, a ritual bath, as an example. Turtleheart had this to say about purification:

I rarely take a ritual bath-- its a bit time consuming... but I will use a sage smudge to purify myself and sometimes an oil to anoint my third eye.

Any of these methods could be used for magical rituals as well. I agree with Turtleheart that it is not always practical for a ritual bath. I am sure there are other methods out there as well.

Circle casting is another component for a magical ritual. Again, I have seen very elaborate and very simple circle casting methods as everyone has their own preferred way to do it. For steps of circle casting, I reference Scott Cunningham’s Living Wicca.

*Purifying the area
*Setting up the alter
*Lighting the candles and incense
*Consecrating the water
*Blessing the salt
*Actual magical creation of the circle

Cunningham points out to be aware of the process that is happening inside you while the circle is being cast. I think it is rather pointless to cast a circle if you are not mindfully creating it. As each individual has ideas of what is involved in creating one, there are also ideas of what is used for. Keeping energy within the circle and keeping certain things out are two examples.

The wording of your ritual, including the circle casting, is a powerful tool in regards to how your mind perceives what you are doing. That’s why I think it is important to word your own rituals instead of using someone else’s. You are then able to put aspects of yourself into the ritual and again, it will be more meaningful to you.

I’m not going to in-depth about each of the tools or spell components that could be used during a ritual. Although there are common ones that are used, each person has to decide for themselves what to use. Many of the published spells out there, while I laugh at them, they will give you a starting point of what you can do within a ritual for magical purposes. There are also many correspondence charts that are used to decide what is right for a certain purpose. In example, what colors to use, time of day to perform the ritual, moon phases, etc.

Your intent or will is the strongest element in a magical ritual. Why do I think that? To make something happen you really have to want it. If you go through a ritual and you are not mindful of what you are doing, will it manifest? Probably not. Or it may, but just not in the way you intended. This is the most mentioned reason why people won’t do a spell for someone else. You will get better results if you want some change to take place. When I see a note on people’s websites about how they will not do spells for people, it surprises me that their readers are asking for this.

Energy raising (and releasing) is another component in a magical ritual. When starting to venture into performing rituals, I have seen energy or power exercises mentioned again and again. I think it is important to start with some of these exercises, so that you know what you are looking for within a circle. There are many ways to raise energy including chanting, dancing, singing, among others.

Here is an article from Witches Voice that goes deeper into this subject.

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