|Posted by Sable Aradia on January 29, 2011 at 6:27 PM||comments (0)|
Wards in a metaphysical context are symbols used to divide one area from another, and to ensure its protection.
Outdoor wards usually involve marking the four or eight compass of a property with a tangible marker. In the modern age, this tends to involve crystals with elemental associations appropriate to the direction, and in older days it involved natural features of the property, animal tokens, particular arrangements of stones or other natural objects, ochre and symbols. The objects chosen should have personal meaning to you and to the land, and acknowledgement of any spirits of the land that you work with should be made (for instance, an offering of honey and milk might be poured for any faeries, etc.) This is both a gift and an appeasement; you are seeking to appease the negative or mischievous spirits of a place, and also to enlist the help of the positive spirits. If you have guardian angels, protective spirits, ancestors who watch over you, Gods and Goddesses or Totems, this would be a good time to call upon them as well.
When creating an outdoor ward, be sure to visualize the protective marker that you have developed as extending into a spiritual pillar that reaches deep into the earth’s core, and into the cosmic Source at the centre of the Universe. You can think of it as “grounding and centering” the marker.
Begin with whatever direction you deem appropriate, and move in an appropriate manner (which may involve travelling in a clockwise “sunwise” direction, a counterclockwise or “moonwise” direction, or balancing opposites, depending on your beliefs. Clockwise brings in energy, counterclockwise banishes negatives, and balancing opposites creates a cross.)
When creating symbols, use whatever symbols seem appropriate to your spirituality. Traditional protective symbols include crosses, crossed circles, an X, bindrunes, pentagrams, oms, or the holy symbols of any faith.
When completed, join your wards together in your visualization, either by linking them overhead, or by visualization a circle connecting each of the points (or a square, or an eight-pointed star, as is appropriate.) Say something to invoke the Powers you pray to, and ask all guardian angels or spirits mentioned to protect your space.
When warding the inside of your home, things are often done a little bit differently. You can use the pillar model already suggested and the markers become the four outer corners of your house, the markers of which should, ideally, be bound in or by the foundation of your home “cornerstones.”
Another method that can be done instead of, or in addition to, the markers, is to seal each and every entrance into your home with a sacred symbol. Often this is preceded by sweeping with a besom or smudging or ringing a bell to drive out all negative influences prior to the warding. In this case, you drive everything out your front door once you are done clearing it. Then, you draw whatever symbol feels appropriate to you (I typically use Earth Banishing Pentagrams, but others may choose to use crosses, eight-spoke wheels, or whatever) on or over every possible entering point with a mixture of blessed salt and water. Typically you would move in a clockwise direction, starting just to the right side of your front door and moving along through every room in turn, finishing at the front door (or most-used entrance to your home.) At this point, you loudly declare that anything with ill intent or negative effect for you and your family is to leave and not return! You seal it with an especially large symbol and punctuate it with a firm declaration that “seals” things in your mind, such as “So mote it be!” or “Amen!”
Remember, this is every entrance to your home or business – that is, any place that anything can come into it. So, for convenience, I have included a checklist in case you forget something:
• Spy holes
• Heat vents
• Dryer vent
• Main power supply or fuse box
• Mirrors (entrances to the spirit world by tradition; don’t forget mirrors in odd places – for instance, I have one on the headboard of my bed)
• Drains (toilets, sinks, storm drains, laundry room drain, etc.)
• Chimneys (even if blocked off)
• Stove pipes
• Attic windows and air vents
• Mail slots that enter into the house
• Pet doors
• Phone line (communication comes in that way!)
• TV cable or television
• Any screen or monitor (it is a reflective surface and you use it for communication)
• Internet connection
• Satellite connection
• Significant cracks that lead to the outside (I have one in my ceiling and one in my foundation of my old house, and I seal them both)
• Unused doors or windows (spirits still use them, even if they are sealed off)
• Skylights (I have an unused one in my store that I didn’t even know was there until someone used it to break in, and I wondered why my warding seemed ineffective until then! Double check these things!)
• Pipes that lead outside
• Some people even ward their electrical outlets – just don’t actually get them wet!
There will be other places that I have not covered – just use your common sense. If it seems appropriate, do it.
May the protection of your guides, Gods and guardians be on your house and home!
|Posted by Sable Aradia on January 4, 2011 at 8:33 PM||comments (0)|
Aleister Crowley coined the use of the word “magick” with a “k” to differentiate it from the magic of illusion and slight-of-hand. As a practicing Witch, I believe that the most feared and misunderstood element of what we do is the practice of magick. We are taught in our culture that magick is somehow wrong, or that it is dangerous and mysterious and only the truly gifted can do it. But magick is really about self-empowerment. It is no different from the concepts of the Law of Attraction or Creative Visualization. The practice of magick differs only in that it uses a language of symbolism and metaphor to circumvent that little voice in the back of our minds that tells us that something will not work. It speaks in primal symbols to our subconscious mind, which then sets forces in motion to bring about our True Will. Aleister Crowley said that “magick is the Art and Science of causing change to occur in conformity with Will.” Dion Fortune said that “magick is the art of changing consciousness at Will.” And both are true! How do we go about doing this?
As shamans throughout the history of humankind, and modern channellers could tell you, the way to reach the Divine is through our subconscious. Only by achieving a trance state – “going within” – can we communicate directly with higher beings, or permit them to communicate through us. We must shut off the chatter of our conscious, waking mind and descend through the subconscious to, paradoxically perhaps, reach higher consciousness. This is the foundation of every mystical practice that has ever existed, and the model for the “Hero’s Journey” that Joseph Campbell wrote about. Freud’s model of consciousness discusses three levels of mind; the conscious mind or ego, the subconscious mind or id, and higher consciousness, called the superego. Feri Wicca refers to these respectively as “Talking Self,” “Younger Self,” and “Higher Self”. Talking Self cannot communicate directly with Higher Self. The only way to communicate with Higher Self is through Younger Self. Younger Self is, of course, the id. The id does not understand things in rational terms. It speaks only in the languages of symbol and emotion. As any psychologist can tell you, the subconscious also picks up everything it is ever told. It remembers everything. The problem is that it does not understand irony or context. This is why you should never tell your children that they are stupid, especially not over and over again. Even if you do not really mean that, your child’s subconscious mind will not be able to tell the difference! Furthermore, when things are repeated, they imprint themselves more firmly in our subconscious minds.
We pick up all kinds of things with our subconscious minds. In many cases this works to our advantage, taking the form of intuitive guidance, information that we just know, somehow. But it often works against us as well. Subconsciously, we take taller people more seriously and listen with more respect to men than women, no matter how enlightened we believe we are. This probably comes from being told that we would have more right to control over our lives “when we grow up,” and being admonished to “wait for our fathers to get home” when we made poor choices that required discipline.
One of the things that imprints on our subconscious through repetition is limitation. If someone tells us repeatedly that we are stupid, we can’t sing, or we are fat, we believe it. If we are told – or tell ourselves – that we do not have enough money to go to school, have no musical talent, or do not deserve to be loved, we believe it. And then, Younger Self takes the message to Higher Self, and Higher Self does what it thinks we want it to do – Higher Self makes it true! As the Hicks and Abraham tell us in the Law of Attraction, if we focus on our poverty, we remain poor. If we focus on our fatness, we can’t be thin. If we dwell constantly on how badly things are going for us, they continue to go badly. How do you change these beliefs if they are ingrained?
The first step is silencing Talking Self. We have to “go within.” We have to reach Younger Self, and make our Younger Self an ally in our work to change our lives. We accomplish this through the practice of meditation and of healing the inner child (yes, the “inner child” is our Younger Self!) through self-examination and conscious effort. It is said that the doors of Eleusis boasted the inscription, “Know Thyself.” We have to make our minds quiet for long enough to know what the subconscious is really saying. What do we really believe about ourselves and the world at our core? There are many ways to work towards this goal, from psychoanalysis to Soul Retrieval to Core Belief Engineering to Emotional Freedom Technique. They are all effective, and the more healing you do for your Younger Self (and the better you understand it) the better you will become at changing consciousness according to Will. In the meantime, we can work on communicating our desires to our Younger Self through the language that it speaks, which is the language of symbolism and metaphor.
Our id does not understand the word “heart.” But it does understand the feeling of love. It also understands what is meant by drawing a red heart symbol. It also understands smells, colours, and symbols. A Witch or magician learns how to speak this language (or trains our subconscious minds to understand this language) and communicates to it in this way. Wanting to bring more love into our lives, we would use Shakti Gawain’s principles of visualizing love, what it would feel like, look like, and so forth, as if it has already happened. Then we would perform an act, called a “spell,” to imprint symbols of love in our minds, to communicate to our Younger Self that this is what we would like Higher Self to manifest in our lives.
How do we do this? Well, have you ever done a guided meditation? Have you noticed that these are more effective the more senses you bring to bear? A well-planned spell uses all five senses. A pink candle could be used as a visual symbol – the colour pink is associated with love in our primal minds, and the flickering candlelight is effective both in that the light itself speaks to us of safety and warmth on a primal level, and the flickering induces the partial trance state of meditation that silences Talking Self and permits Higher Self and Younger Self to communicate. The smell of beeswax, or perhaps some sweet-smelling incense or root chakra stimulating essential oils (such as rose or patchouli) can be an olfactory trigger; very effective to the primitive brain. Perhaps an auditory trigger may also be helpful, such as romantic music, soft drumming, or a simple poem that asks for love in our lives. The act of lighting the candle, anointing it with the oil or lighting the incense, and speaking our poem that phrases our intent or playing our song, creates a kinaesthetic trigger. Perhaps we complete the process by eating cakes or honey, or drinking wine, invoking taste in ways that are associated with romance.
All of these things come together to tell our pre-literate, emotional subconscious minds that we wish to change our reality by bringing love into our lives. The subconscious mind then tells our superconsciousness – our Divine Connection, the part of ourselves that is Divine already and is connected to God as we understand it – that this is what we want. If we have made ourselves understood, our Divine part, Higher Self, then makes it happen. When we speak in this pre-verbal language to our subconscious mind, it is more difficult for Talking Self to ruin things by taking it apart with all the reasons why it won’t work. Talking Self’s justifications and excuses are completely circumvented, and thus, we cease to stand in our own way.
Quantum physics is in the process of proving that principles that magicians have known for millennia are actually true. One thing that the science of quantum physics has proven is that our perception affects reality. If you bombard atoms with light, electrons are knocked loose. If you measure them as particles, they register as particles. If you measure for energy, they register as energy. At the subatomic level, what we expect to find directly affects reality as we perceive it. And thus, both Dion Fortune and Aleister Crowley are proven to be correct.
|Posted by Sable Aradia on January 4, 2011 at 8:13 PM||comments (0)|
The planets have been called upon for hundreds, even thousands of years, for their magickal properties. Some of this has come down to us through astrology, but some of it remains strictly the providence of magicians, Witches and other Will-workers. At the request of my students from the Wise Woman festival, I’d like to offer this brief article about some of those traditional associations and properties, so that you can call upon them in your magick and your everyday life!
The Sun (Sunday): Health, prosperity, leadership, success, protection, joy, ego, fathers, husbands. Metal – gold; Herbs – St. John’s Wort, saffron, chamomile, marigold, mistletoe, rosemary, chicory, High John the Conqueror; Scents – cedar, clove, cinnamon, frankincense, juniper, marigold, rosemary, rue.
The Moon (Monday): Emotions, intuition, healing, women’s mysteries, art & music, beauty, psychic abilities, subconscious, protection, spirituality, dreams, wives, mothers. Metal – silver; Herbs – white rose, birch, chickweed, cleavers, willow, yarrow, mugwort, wormwood; Scents – coconut, eucalyptus, gardenia, jasmine, lemon, lotus, myrrh, sandalwood, ylang ylang.
Mercury (Wednesday): Travel, learning, higher education, communication, expression, writing, healing, alchemy. Metals – mercury, electrum; Herbs – caraway, dill, fennel, hazel, spearmint, lemon balm, marjoram, parsley, lavender; Scents – bayberry, lavender, lemongrass, spearmint, clary sage.
Venus (Friday): Lovers, love, pleasure, desire, beauty, women, women’s health, hedonism. Metal – copper; Herbs – Elder, cypress, daisy, foxglove, ivy, violet, vervain, plantain, thyme, sorrel, rose, apple, strawberry, alder, tansy, marshmallow, primrose, evening primrose; Scents – African violet, apple, cherry, rose, jasmine, lilac, patchouli, vanilla, ylang ylang.
Earth: Money, health, home, safety, healing, strength. Metals – all; Herbs – Betony, dittany of Crete, moss, cedar, spruce, patchouli; Scents – Patchouli, niaouli, cypress, myrrh.
Mars (Tuesday): Physical energy, war, lust, victory, cutting & surgery, soldiers, strength, courage, law, accomplishing goals, men. Metal – iron; Herbs – basil, thistle, holly, pepper (all varieties); Scents – carnation, ginger, peppermint, pine, dragon’s blood.
Jupiter (Thursday): Religion, philosophy, expansion, luck, business, attracting more of what you have. Metal – tin; Herbs – milk thistle, agrimony, sage, balm, hyssop, borage, cinquefoil, nutmeg, oak; Scents – Sage, sandalwood, nutmeg, lime, anise, clove.
Saturn (Saturday): Structure, form, reality, limits, tests, obstacles, resistance, endings, hard work, real estate, karma, age, death, bones. Metal – lead; Herbs – Mullein, comfrey, nightshade, hemlock, henbane, hemp, knapweed, mandrake; Scents – Black orchid, iris, myrrh, black pepper, opium poppy, patchouli, violet.
Uranus: Astrology, technology, inventions, innovation, counselling, originality, sudden events. Metals – zinc, magnetite, uranium; Herbs – Allspice, clove, ginseng, linseed, nutmeg, lobelia, peppermint, pine, wormwood; Scents – Peppermint, clove, nutmeg, pine.
Neptune: Mysticism, music, imagination, dance, illusion, Dionysian pleasures (drugs, sex, alcohol, etc.), sleep. Metals – platinum, cobalt, neptunium; Herbs – Most drugs & poisons, belladonna, opium poppies, valerian, coffee, chamomile, coltsfoot; Scents – gardenia, opium, hemp, wine, honeysuckle.
Pluto: Investigation, the Underworld, insurance, wealth, loans, transformation, death. Metals – tungsten, bismuth, plutonium; Herbs – Galangal, pennyroyal, pomegranate, narcissus, musk; Scents – Galangal, musk, petitgrain.
|Posted by Sable Aradia on January 4, 2011 at 7:51 PM||comments (0)|
An aura is the three-dimensional energy field that surrounds the bodies of all beings and things. The healthier you are, and/or the more you work to develop your healing abilities and your spirituality, the further the aura will extend out from your body. We don't really understand the nature of the aura. Some believe it is a separate "emotional body" that exists in the same space as our "physical body." Some believe it is a representation of our spirit, and others believe that it is a representation of our life-force. Probably it is all of the above and neither.
How to Read the Aura
Find a place where there isn't any harsh light. Focus on one part of your body, preferably your hand. Relax and concentrate on your hand lines. If you’re relaxed enough, you’ll first see a shade, either dark or light, surrounding your hand. Eventually you will notice a single colour on the edges of your peripheral vision, which is likely to be the predominent colour in your aura or a reflection of any powerful moods you may be experiencing while you do this exercise. With time you might be able to see several colours.
Auras can be seen physically, or sensed psychically. One way to see someone's aura is to have the subject stand in front of a white background. If you look at the person for a while you’ll see some sort of wavy lines of energies, and also maybe a couple of aura colours. Try the following exercise:
Stand in front of a mirror at a distance of about half a meter, with a wall of neutral colour some distance behind you. Alternatively, get a friend to stand about 1 meter away from you and 2 meters from a neutral wall. Dim the lights. Relax, and breathe deeply and evenly. Focus your eyes on the wall behind the head.
Gently sway your body from side to side (or tell your friend to if looking at someone else). As you stare past the outline of the head, you should be able to see an envelope of light - that's the aura! Keep trying if you are unsuccessful immediately. Like anything else, it takes practice.
Another thing to note is that not all of us sense things best with our eyes. Some of us are very tactile, others are auditory, and still others are olfactory. I "feel" auras, and subtle changes in them that indicate problems, much more easily than I "see" them. Others might "hear" vibration or ringing, something like a finger on a wine glass or a singing bowl. Others might "smell" pleasant or unpleasant odours that they associate with feelings and memories. None of these is superior to any other! Remember that in any case, this is your sixth sense that you are using to perceive the aura, and any effect, be it visual, auditory, or whatever, is your mind's interpretation of that sixth sense. Don't be discouraged if you find one method difficult; learn to work with the information you are receiving.
Common Aura Colours
The following is a list of aura colours that are associated with various physical, mental, emotional and spiritual states.
• Red: The colour of strength, passion, impulsiveness and will.
• Orange: colour of affection, kindness, and creativity. The muddier shades denote vanity, while golden orange represents self-control. Muddier colours may also indicate kidney or bowel troubles.
• Yellow: Mental activity, optimism, perfectionism, responsibility, sometimes shyness.
• Green: The colour of sympathy and reliability. The person may be an effective healer and is likely deeply concerned about the well-being of others. Dark shades of green however indicate one who is jealous or hesitant.
• Blue: The colour of calm, and spiritual and material contentment. May sometimes represent a tendency to moodiness and depression.
• Indigo/Violet: The colours of the seeker who has inborn psychic and intuitive abilities. Darker shades may show that the person often feels misjudged and misunderstood. May indicate heart or stomach trouble.
• Black: The colour of self-protection. The person is good at ‘wearing masks’.
• Pink: A compassionate person who is fond of the arts. Darker shades of pink may point to immaturity and irresponsibility.
• White: Purity and honesty. A colour associated with spiritually evolved persons.
• Silver: The person might be pregnant or is going to be soon! However, this is not always so. Seeing this may indicate a person who is allowing great creativity in their life. I often see shades of silver when one is Drawing Down the Moon.
• Gold: I tend to see this colour when someone is Drawing Down the Sun. I suppose that's probably why it is associated with spiritual enlightenment and "God" energy.
Sometimes you experience the interplay of an outside energy field upon your aura. You can tell this is happening to you in the following circumstances:
• When you are around some people and you feel ‘drained’ and weak.
• When you feel there is someone staring at you intensely.
• When you have an instant liking or disliking for someone you’ve just met.
• When you sense someone’s presence before you saw this person.
Generally if you find it intrusive, there are methods of "psychic self-defense" that you can undertake to protect yourself. The simplest one is to cover your heart chakra. The typical method of doing this is to cross your arms across your chest, but this body language is sometimes interpreted as hostility so it may not be appropriate. You will sometimes see me protecting my heart chakra in the store by leaning on the counter with my hands on my chin and my arms in front of me. I find this creates a pose that implies that I am listening, without allowing the person I am speaking to to drain my energy. You may also find it helpful to protect your base chakra, which you can do by crossing your legs. Even crossing them at the ankles is helpful, and you can do that standing or sitting without most people taking offense.
|Posted by Sable Aradia on January 4, 2011 at 7:51 PM||comments (0)|
Cord Magick (knot magick) is simply doing magick by making knots in a cord!
When doing cord magick, it is important to choose the right color. Generally you use a red, white or black cord, but use whatever colour feels appropriate or suits the symbolism of your purpose. Most of the time you dispose of the cord once you are done with it because it order to use it again, you would have to untie the knots which could release the spell. I like to toss my cords (biodegradable) into rivers and streams, letting the running water release the bound energy.
The knots are done in the following manner:
In other words, you tie the first knot, at the very end of the cord, then go to the other end of the cord to tie the second knot, then the center for the third knot, between the first and third knots for the fourth knot, between the second and third knots for the fifth knot, and so on.
An example of a rune spoken while tying the knots:
By knot of one, this spell's begun
By knot of two, my words are true
By knot of three, it comes to be
By knot of four, power in store
By knot of five, this spell's alive
By knot of six, this spell is fixed
By knot of seven, the answer's given
By knot of eight, I meld with fate
By knot of nine, the thing is mine!
|Posted by Sable Aradia on January 4, 2011 at 6:59 PM||comments (0)|
Successful magick is founded on four basic principles. These valuable skills are known as the “Four Powers of the Magus” or the “Witches’ Pyramid.” Each of them is based in one of the Four Elements:
Air (East) Noscere “To Know”
Knowledge is the first key to successful magick. You have to know what you are doing and how to do it. You have to know how to express your desires clearly in a way that the Universe will comprehend what you are asking for. You need to know that you will never know everything and seeking knowledge is a lifetime’s quest. You also need to know yourself!
Fire (South) Audere “To Dare”
Magick is an act of courage. It takes a great deal of courage to ask the Universe for what you want/need, and expect to get it! We are told our whole lives that magick is impossible, or if it is (such as in the form of miracles,) that we are not worthy. You must, if you wish to succeed at magick, dare to ask, and dare to receive as well! You must also dare to proceed even if you feel that your knowledge is less than perfect. How can anyone, including the Divine, know what you need unless you ask for it?
Water (West) Velle “To Will”
Focusing your Will is essential. In order to do this, you have to be able to know what your Will actually is! Then, you have to be able to concentrate that Will to manifest your desires, without getting in your own way. Since focusing your Will is both a conscious and an unconscious exercise, you must learn to master your subconscious mind through visualization, meditation, and self-exploration, maybe even therapy. You must not allow obstacles to stop you. As Doreen Valiente said, “Keep pure your highest ideal; strive ever towards it; let none stop you or turn you aside.”
Earth (North) Tacere “To Keep Silent”
Once it was believed that speaking about your magick reduced its power. Certainly, exposing your desires to others who may have desires that conflict with yours will cause interference, and exposing magick to those who doubt it means that your Will with have to contest with their doubt as well as your own! For this reason I don’t tend to speak about my magick until it has been achieved. Also, bragging, boasting or threatening others is ill-advised, and the true Magus/Witch recognizes that speech itself is a form of magick. Don’t wish harm on to others or spread gossip, and be careful what you wish for; you just might get it!
Spirit (Centre) Ire "To Go"
Together, the Four Powers create the ability "to go"; that is, to go forth with magick that moves and acts (though some systems do not include this fifth element, especially the traditional ones based in ceremonial magick, though it is implied.) If you Know what you need to do, Dare to do it, Will it into existence, and Keep Silent so that no one can interfere with your desire, and your magick will flow freely without any additional effort on your part, and you will achieve your magickal goals!
True Will should spring, a fountain of Light, from within, and flow unchecked, seething with Love, into the Ocean of Life.
- Aleister Crowley, “Little Essays Towards Truth”