Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Magical Ritual

When I started looking for information about ritual, I was realizing that there were many different ways to look at it. There is a lot of information out there regarding all types of ritual, but I have been noticing that there seems to be several different kinds just for magical ritual. Most of the online conversations about magic seem to be of say-a-few-simple-words-and-you’ll-get-what-you-want type. I had to dig a little deeper to find more intelligent conversations about it than I did for either personal or religious rituals.

By looking online, and on the bookshelves of the New Age section, it seems as though many people think of magical ritual as love spells and get rich quick schemes. Do these simple “spells” work? I don’t believe that just saying a few words will get you what you’re looking for. And that is probably a good thing, as it seems to be teens that buy these types of books (judging by experience of working in a book store for three years). There are many books that are published with many of these types of spells in them, but unless you have the desire to manifest the wanted effect, it’s not going to happen.

So what is involved in magical ritual? I wanted to find out, as I was not too familiar with its practices and magic seems to be a big part of paganism, no matter the path that is taken.

When first starting to learn about magical practices and rituals, many books that mention this subject in a more or less serious way, start with “energy” or “power” exercises. That makes sense to me. If you can’t feel the energy you are raising, how can you direct it to where you want it to go? Many of these exercises have to do with visualization. That makes sense to me, as well. If you can’t see the end result and picture it clearly, doing a ritual for magical purposes will be more like “going through the motions” than something that has a clear and defined purpose.

That brings me to my next point – a clear and defined purpose. You need know what you are trying to manifest. But then again, you need to know that the intended result may not show up in the way that you wanted or thought it would. It is good to sit down and do a little brainstorming as to what you want and how to bring it about, and write a ritual that is more meaningful to you instead of using ones that are published in books. Again, meaning comes into play. A ritual in this situation is to help you concentrate to bring about the desired effect. I have looked at many books over the years and find that the rituals within usually don't appeal to me as they don't having menaing behind them to me.

Also, with purpose comes the added aspect of ethics regarding how your magical workings affect others. In short, don’t “cast spells” on others without their permission. So that cute guy sitting in the front row of your chemistry class that you wish would notice you? Don’t use magic to make him do so. It may be against his will whether he wants to talk to you or not.

I forgot to write down where I had read this, but I thought this quote was a very down to earth view of magic. It also makes the point that YOU need to do something about what you want, that magic doesn’t solve your problems. It went something like this : Here’s a love spell – take a shower, brush your teeth. Here’s a money spell – pick up a newspaper and look through the job ads.

Magical rituals can be as elaborate or as simple as you want them to be. Through my reading, I have found these components to be common of magical rituals.

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

I am noticing that my posts are a little wordy, so I will try to split them up. I will talk about these components in another post.

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