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March 23, 2014 | By | Add a Comment

components of ritual

Ritual is integral to the human experience. It manifests in various forms in every culture. In the context of magick, ritual serves a variety of functions. Of primary importance is the effect of ritual upon the human mind. Performing a ritual dramatically alters consciousness. The elements of ritual direct the mind towards specific states of being. Additionally, ritual alters internal energetic states. The classic components of ritual focus the mind, inflame the emotions, and gather energy. This process naturally generates pneuma technikon while enhancing the power and efficacy of the magickal operation.

A well designed ritual guides the magickal act. The physical actions, material objects, and verbal formulae that comprise ritual augment and guide action performed at the etheric level. Ritual is the harmonious synchronization of physical action guiding the consciousness and etheric action. It is, however, important not to confuse ritual with magick itself. Ritual, although highly effective, is not necessary to perform magick. Most magi do, however, use some form of ritual to augment magickal operations. For every magickal technique and practice there exists an endless variety of corresponding rituals. The value of a ritual is judged solely by the degree to which it assists the magus in performing magick. Through trial and error, a ritual style may be developed to best suit the individual nature of the magus.
Common components of ritual include:

~ Gesture
~ Chant
~ Movement
~ Use of Magickal Tools
~ Materiae Magicae
~ Music
~ Sex
~ Recitation
~ Allegorical Action
~ Symbols

Gestures are primarily used to direct energy through the body. When properly performed, gestures move the etheric body in perfect harmony with the material body. The material and etheric body are two aspects of a single phenomenon. Etheric energies naturally follow movement of the material body. This effect is the basis of traditional movement arts such as Tai Chi, Chi Gong, and yoga. Gestures used in ritual are shaped by the personal style of the magus and the nature of the magickal working. Such gestures range from a simple wave of the hand to a complex series of choreographed movements.

Chant is used to focus the mind and generate energy. The mind altering drone of chant serves to hold the awareness upon the magickal goal. The evocative nature of chant assists in both the generation and projection of pneuma. This effect is increased when the chant makes use of ancient magickal languages and words of power.

Ritual movement includes circumambulation, moving meditations and dance. Movement is primarily used to generate energy and induce a shift in consciousness.

Magickal Tools
Magickal tools are used to enhance specific ritual acts. Each tool performs a unique task. Common tasks include projecting and amplifying energies or transforming and consecrating substances. When used properly, magickal tools are seamlessly integrated into the physical and etheric flow of the ritual.

Materiae Magicae
The various incense, oils, candles, and potions of materiae magicae are used to transform the magus and alter the ritual space. These substances contain potent pneuma. They are skillfully incorporated into the ritual to augment magickal techniques and practices.

Music profoundly alters consciousness. It is used in ritual to quickly shift thoughts, emotions, and energies into states aligned with the magickal goal. Music sets the emotive tone, ranging from meditative to frenzied states as needed. This powerful magickal tool has been used throughout human history from the earliest shamans to the present day.

Sex is used in ritual to alter consciousness and generate large amounts of potent pneuma. The ritual framework serves to harness and redirect this energy towards the magickal goal.

In the context of ritual, recitation typically takes the form of a magickal, poetic speech. Used to exalt the emotions, it is a tool for generating emotive energy appropriate to the working at hand. It aligns the mind with the purpose of the magickal working through verbal expression. Recitation is used extensively in the invocation of deities and the evocation of spirits.

Allegorical Action
Allegorical action is a symbolic enactment of the intent of the magickal working. For example, one may tie cords around a wax image to bind an enemy, or pour water into a cauldron to bring rain. Allegorical action is a physical expression of action taken at the etheric level. This serves as a meditation to focus the mind upon the magickal goal and forms a powerful connection to the subject of the working. When employing allegorical action, items that have been in close proximity to the subject are often included in the working, as they retain the pneuma and etheric traces of the subject. Such items greatly strengthen the connection via action of resonance and enhanced perception of the subject’s etheric trace through the Universal Etheric Field.

Symbols are typically used in ritual as a meditative focal point during the generation of pneuma. In this capacity they serve to focus the awareness while evoking specific thoughts and emotions. They may also be used as gateways to pools of energy and consciousness within the Universal Etheric Field. Examples of such symbols include yantras, mandalas, sigils, and sacred statues. Symbols of power may also be inscribed upon objects to impart them with magickal potency.



© 2013 Vasilios Wennergren

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Category: Ritual

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