Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Qabalistic Cross Ritual

The Qabalistic Cross
The Qabalistic Cross is a ceremonial practice that’s basic purpose is to help the magician reach “ritual consciousness” before a magickal working. The Qabalistic Cross (QC) centers the magician in the middle of his/her cosmic universe and aligns the magician with the energy of the cosmos as well as the Tree of Life, an occult reality map that explains the spiritual nature of the universe.  The ritual that I have adapted into my own practice is the one set down by Christopher Penczak in “The Temple of High Witchcraft” (pg.96 ch.4) more info on the performance, symbolism and tools of the ritual will follow:

1)      Stand in center of room, or in West of altar facing the East. Clear and release, still the mind.
2)      Visualize yourself growing to gigantic size, up past the sky into the solar system and even farther from the galaxy. The Earth below is tiny but your feet are anchored to it so you don’t have to worry about “flying away”. Visualize that you are in the far reaches of the cosmos, a star descends to your crown then transforms to a ball of brilliant white light, know that this ball is a piece of the Great Spirit (the androgynous and all pervasive spirit of the Universe, The Source, i.e. The Unknown God/dess), it burns brighter than a thousand suns. Take blade/ index and middle fingers (of the predominant hand or what is called your “Power Hand”, ambidextrous persons should use the hand they feel most comfortable with) and pierce the ball, move blade/fingers to forehead and touch the Third Eye (middle of brow at penile gland), visualizing a stream of white light moving with the blade/fingers. Vibrate: AH-tah.
3)      Move blade/fingers downwards vertically across the body, guiding with it the stream of white light, point blade/fingers towards the Earth and visualize the light moving downwards to the Earth and past it into infinity, focus on this beam of light and vibrate: Mahl-KOOT.
4)      Bring blade/fingers up to right shoulder, touch shoulder with blade/fingers. Visualize a star at the right shoulder. Visualize the vertical beam in the center of your body extend another beam of white light from the heart area to the star at the right shoulder and then out through infinity to the right. Focus on the beam of light and vibrate: Vih-G’boo-RAAH.
5)      Move blade/fingers across to the left shoulder, touch shoulder with blade/fingers, visualize a star at the left shoulder. Visualize the white beam of light in the center of your body extending another beam of white light from the heart area to the star at the left shoulder and out through infinity to the left. Focus on the beam of light and vibrate: Vih-G’doo-LAH.
6)      Now clasp hands together over your chest in a prayer position. With blade (if using one) hold it point up between the knuckles. Visualize beneath your hands at heart area a golden glowing light within the middle of your chest at the point of intersection between the four points of the cross within your body. Focuse on this golden light and the cross as a whole, vibrate: Lih-Oh-LAHM, Ah-MEN. Feel yourself in a cross of light stretching infinitely through the universe.
7)      When done and not continuing on to other rituals or magickal workings, bring your awareness back to the material world, resuming (slowly) back to normal proportions and letting the visualization of the cross of light fade. Clear and release all excess energy if needed.
The words that are vibrated within this ritual basically translate to: “For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, now and forever. Amen.” This prayer is a type of code that grounds the Tree of Life through four main centers of your body. The sephira at the top is the godhead, the “thine” of the prayer. The one at the bottom where your feet are translates to “kingdom”, the one to your right translates to “power” and the one to your left translates to “glory”, or “mercy”.
The Words of Power
Perhaps one of the most common road blocks to beginners of this ritual are the concerns of the vibration, or toning, of the scared sounds. A lot of books and writers from the ceremonial traditions have inspired some fear in “mispronouncing” the words of power. To be completely honest the pronunciation of the words has less to do with the proper performance of the ritual than the intention of the words when they are said. As long as you are focused and you say the words with confidence and meaning then you are doing the ritual right, regardless if you mispronounce the words or not. As Christopher Penczak put it in “The Temple of High Witchcraft” (TOHW), “It’s better to do it, holding a strong intention, and let the practice evolve rather than not to do it because you are afraid to do it wrong.”
If you are still worried about whether or not you are pronouncing the words of power correctly and if this is negatively affecting your ritual then listen to the wise words of modern mystic and Qabalist, Lon Milo Duquette, author of  “The Chicken Qabalah”, from which he writes:
“The first liberating secret Chicken Qabalists learn is that (as far as the Qabalah is concerned) there is no such thing as correct Hebrew Pronunciation. Yep. That’s right. No matter how you pronounce the various words in the system, some snob is sure to pop up (especially in public) and correct you….I repeat, nobody knows for sure what the sacred language of the ancient Hebrews sounded like, or even if it was spoken at all! Pronunciation has less than nothing to do with the study and practice of the spiritual applications of the Qabalah.”
The Blade
In this ritual there is a common tool used to direct the energy of the cross of light and that tool is the ritual blade. Also known as an athame (pronounced Ah-THA-May), the ritual blade is an extension of the magician and is used to direct and absorb the energy in a ritual. Traditionally, athames are plain, dull double-edge daggers with a black hilt, but modern magickal practitioners have access to a large variety of athames and daggers some as simple as a sharp piece of wood and others are elegant pieces of jeweled art. The  ritual blade is not necessary to perform this or any ritual, it is just a tool to help focus and direct energy which could just as easily be done with one’s own fingers.