Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Circle Casting by Tytus Lionheart


 


 The most important part of a Wiccan Ritual is the Circle of Art. The Circle is casted to act as many things: a boundary of sacred space to keep out unwanted influences, a battery that enhances magickal energy by building it up in a condensed space, as a place between worlds where one can visit gods, summon for the spirits of arcane origin or cast a spell into the universe. The circle is a symbol of the universe; it is a microcosm of the macrocosm, a reflection of the universe and its powers. All acts done within the circle are magickal ones that can bring about great change within and without. So then the casting of the circle becomes an important ritual for any Wiccan to learn and know. There are as many ways to cast a circle as there are Wiccans, I will give an example of my own circle casting technique, feel free to copy this one or to alter it to your own tastes just be sure to keep the basic components of the circle casting when making your modifications and you should have excellent results.

To begin you must first find a space where you and those participating will not be disturbed during ritual. Once the space is found you must physically cleans it, sweep away dirt, wipe away dust, clear away obstacles, you want a large enough working space to fit the circle which can be as large or small as the space allows. Just be sure you will be able to make your movements within the circle easily without obstruction. Now that the space is prepared make sure you have the following items:

·         Athame (ritual knife *optional)

·         4 pillar candles of red, yellow, green, blue

·         Matches/lighter

·         Compass

·         2 small bowls; one filled with sea salt the other filled with fresh water

 

Place all these items on our in your workspace.

The instructions here are build on the basic formula for a circle casting, now as I have stated you may copy my ritual here or construct your own using this own as a guide but there are some basic principles of circle casting that must be adhered to for a successful casting. So you may change the incantations, you may change which direction you start in, you can even change the representations of the four elements but the basic components are best left unchanged.

Our first step, that is a basic in almost all ritual proceedings, is the cleansing of the space from unwanted, negative energy. Energy builds up in areas like dust and often it needs to be cleared away before a magickal proceeding can take place so this energy doesn’t affect the ritual workings. There are many ways to cleanse a space and you can employ whichever way is best for you but as long as you cleanse before you begin, this is important.

I cleanse a space by using Holy Water; in Wicca Holy Water is a combination of charged salt and water. The symbolism behind this is that salt represents the purest form of Earth and water is the main component to every living thing, so then mixing the salt into the water is a symbolic act of taking purity and spreading it into life (there are different explanations of this symbolism, this is just one). The instructions for creating Holy Water that I am about to unfold are a part of the Correllian Natavist Tradition’s teachings and they can be found at (witchschool.com):

How to Create Holy Water:

·         Place your power hand (the hand you write with) over the water. Make three Tuathail (counter-clockwise) circles over the water, concentrating on removing and negativity from it. Say something like:

 

“Behold I cleanse you, O creature of Water, casting out from you any impurities which may lie within!”

 

·         Visualize yellow-white light pouring down from your hand into the water, and forcing out negativity (which can be seen as black dispersing like dust particles).

·         Now make three Deosil (clock wise) circles with your hand over the water. Say something like:

 

“And I do bless and consecrate you to this work!”

 

·         Visualize the water being filled with, clear, blue-white light. Imagine the water filling with this light until it shines as brightly as if it were a blue-white sun within it.

·         Now turn to the salt. Place your hand over it and repeat the above instructions like you did the water but when you cleanse the salt with yellow light say:

 

“Behold, I cleanse you, O creature of Earth, casting out from you any impurities that may lie within!

 

·         Then when you make the Deosil circles with the blue white light say:

 

“And I do bless and consecrate you to this work!”

 

·         Visualize the salt being filled with the blue-white light until the light shines like a blue-white sun within it. Now say something like:

 

“Behold, the salt is pure! Behold the water is pure! Purity into Purity then, and purity be blessed!”

 

·         Add three pinches of salt to the water and stir clock wise visualizing the whole mixture as shining a bright white light.

·         You have now made Holy Water!

Take the Holy Water and walk Deosil (clock wise) around the area of your working. As you go around the area, asperse it, that is to say, sprinkle it with the Holy Water. As you do this imagine the area being flooded with yellow light. Let the yellow light fill the area, going out in all directions for a good distance. This is the act that actually sends out the negativity, so focus on it as strongly as possible.

·         As you asperse the area you may wish to say something like:

 

“Behold I cleanse and purify this space.”

When you’ve made a full circle, replace the Holy Water to the altar. Turn to face the inside of the circle and say:

          “I bless and consecrate this space!”

Now visualize the area being filled with blear blue-white light, so it is wholly filled in all directions.

You have just cleanse and blessed your ritual space. You are now ready to cast the circle.

Casting the Circle:

The traditional method of casting a circle is with the use of a ritual tool called an athame (Ah-THAH-may) which is a ritual knife. If you do not have one that is fine because all you really need is your pointer finger of your power hand (the hand you write with), in the ritual outline when I use the word athame just replace it with the word finger if you are not using an athame. Before we begin place the four candles in their proper places, each of the candles represents an element: red is fire, blue is water, yellow is air and green is earth. Using your compass; place the red candle in the south, the blue in the west, the green in the north and the yellow in the east.

·         Begin in the East, point your Athame outward past the elemental candle. The boundaries of the circle is not limited to the space of your room, it can become much larger, since the circle is made of energy it is not blocked or hampered by walls, so make your circle a comfortable size. Just be sure that the area you cast the circle in is cleansed and that no other people will be wandering through it.

·         Visualize a beam of red light shooting from the tip of your athame and ending at the area you are pointing at.

·         Focus hard on this light and now begin to trace a circle with the red light, walking Deosil towards the south side, keep focusing on the red light.

·         The most important thing is to focus on the circle boundary being strong, but if you want to say an incantation to help with visualization you can say something like:

 

“Behold, I do cut a space between the realms; a Circle of Art, to focus and contain the power raised herein!”

·         Continue this way pass the west side then the north and back to the east. See the red line connecting to its starting point in the east.

·         Now raise your athame and visualize the circle expanding into a dome above you and say:

 

“As Above,”

 

·         Now lower you athame, pointing it to the ground, visualize the dome of red light extending below you, so that you are encased in a red sphere of energy and say:

“So Below!”

You have just casted the circle. Now it is time to call the Quarters also called the Watchtowers. They are the elemental guardians and they aid us in our magick so that its manifestation is more successful, they control the flow of energy into the universe.

·         Walk to the eastern yellow candle and light the candle saying,

 

“Hail to the Guardian of the Watchtower to the East, power of Air and intellect! Be here with us in our circle and give to us your blessing and your aid in our work. Hail and Welcome!”

 

·         Visualize a pillar of yellow light rising up before you from the yellow candle.

·         Now go to the south, light the red candle while saying,

 

“Hail to the Guardian of the Watchtower to the South, power of Fire and Will! Be here with us in our circle and give to us your blessing and your aid in our work. Hail and Welcome!”

 

·         Visualize a pillar of red light rising up before you from the red candle.

·         Now go to the west, light the blue candle while saying,

“Hail to the Guardian of the Watchtower to the West, power of Water and emotion! Be here with us in our circle and give to us your blessing and your aid in our work. Hail and Welcome!

·         Visualize a pillar of blue light rising from the blue candle.

·         Now go to the north, light the green candle while saying,

“Hail to the Guardian of the Watchtower to the North, power of Earth and silence! Be here with us in our circle and give to us your blessing and your aid in our work. Hail and Welcome!”

·         Visualize a pillar of green light rising from the green candle.

You have successfully invoked the four Watchtowers to guard and aid your Magick Circle. The Magick Circle is now cast. Now you must invoke Deity and then you can proceed with the body of your ritual or spell.

 

The invocation to Deity should come from your heart and from your own words especially if you are working with a specific God or Goddess. If you wish you may use this general invocation to the Great Spirit from which all Gods and Goddesses come from:

 

“Holy Mother-Father God, Universal Force of life Which sustains all things, be here with us now and aid us in our work. Give us your blessing and your guidance, I pray to you with love and gratitude for your aid!”

 

Now at this time you would proceed with the body of your ritual or spell, performing any magickal act that needs to be done within the circle. Once finished its time to deconstruct the circle, first you must Devoke the Gods:

 

“Holy Mother-Father God, Great Spirit of the Universe, thank you for being here with us during this rite. The working is over, I offer you my love and bid you Hail and Farewell!”

 

Now we must depart the watchtowers starting in the North this time and walking Tuathail (counter-clockwise). In the North stand before the green candle and pillar of light, say:

 

“Guardian of the Watchtower to the North, thank you for being here with us during this rite. We thank you for your aid but the rite is now over. I offer you my love and bid you Hail and Farewell!”

 

Visualize the Green pillar of light descending into the green pillar candle and then snuff out the flame (do not blow it out!). Continue doing this for each of the Watchtowers and candles; saying thanks to the watchtowers and biding them farewell, seeing the pillar of light descending into the candle and then snuffing out the candle. Do this until you get to the east and once that candle is snuffed pick up your athame and point it out wards towards the east where the circle of art is. Visualize the red light of the circle being sucked into the athame while you walk Tuathail around the circle while saying:

 

“The rite is over, the spell complete; this ring of power shall now dissipate. So Mote It Be!”

 

Continue absorbing the circles energy with your athame until you are back at the east.

 

You have just casted and dismantled a magick circle.

 

 There are many variations to this as I stated earlier. Instead of four candles you could use the four Ace cards of the Tarot (Swords is air/east, wands is fire/south, pentacles/coins is earth/north, and cups is water/west) or you could use physical objects of the elements (Candle for fire, rock for earth, shell for water, incense for air). Whatever works best for you, just be sure to stick to this format: Cleanse space, set up altar, cast circle, call Quarters, invoke Deity, perform body of ritual/spell, devoke deity, bid farewell to quarters, and then absorb the circle. You can personalize this as much as you want just be sure to keep this basic structure intact and your circle casting should be successful.