There was a spectacular Full Moon this past week and I had the opportunity to get outside and do the spells on the patio over the fire pit. I love to do this when I can (usually every Full Moon) and this night was warm but not too warm for a fire. I had the torches lit too which really amps up the ambiance. Then it was just me, the elements and the Goddess going to work.
I am often asked how I begin my spellcasting. I won’t give away too much here but I can let you know the general gist of what I do.
I don’t call the quarters anymore – I haven’t done that in years except for sabbats. I begin with meditation and getting into the Alpha state by grounding and centering myself. Everything that I do, including casting my circle of projection is energetic, I don’t walk the circle or use an athame or wand or other ritual tools. I have these items of course ; many of them on various altars throughout the house, but my spellcasting is all about energetic connection and focused will and intention. Everything else is symbolic.
That is not to say that I do not use correspondences in my spellcasting (and crafting). I do, including herbs, oils, curios, sigils, veves (in Voodoo), mojos and root bags (Hoodoo) and many other magickal items. I like the connection between the spirit and the mundane for most spells I cast.
If you’ve ever had me cast a spell for you, you have most likely gotten an envelope that smells great, that contains the results of your spell. You may have also gotten a mojo bag or root bag as results, or even a talisman or amulet. Sometimes the items I use in the spell are consumed in the working (Beacon of Love uses a 7 day candle that is completely consumed for instance) but I try to have something to send to my clients so they can have a connection with it and at the very least see what I’ve been up to on their behalf.
Unfortunately I am limited to not using any plant matter in spells for International clients, so I have had to revamp several spells to make the results I send comply with these regulations. I’d rather be able to send herbs and spell powders though, since I do use them so often.
Once my circle is cast and I have called in my protectors ( I won’t tell you how I do that, sorry); I commence with the casting.
Most of the time I have multiples of the same spell; but each has to be handled individually, since no two circumstances are ever the same. The process can be intense and exhausting (depending upon the spells ) and some spells like Magnetic Attraction take five days total, so imagine all these individual workings set up on my altar to be tended to each and every day. I have to put spell workings on all the altars. Some time I will take a photo so you can see what I mean.
The Beacon of Love is my favorite to get multiples of because each one requires a 7 day candle that is kept lit for exactly that – 7 days. The only safe place to keep them when I am out of the house is in the walk-in shower! Once a couple of years ago I ran a special and had 9 clients participate – the floor of the shower was ablaze with candlelight and the smell from the infused oils and herbs was intoxicating. Even the postal delivery person was intrigued and asked why the house smelled so great!
There have been many times that I have cast until the sunrise and this is a truly remarkable time. I don’t realize how much time has passed as I have been “between the worlds” but then the sky takes on this smoky grey tinge and I watch the color begin to seep back into the world. When I see the sun glinting between the hemlock trees in the backyard I know it’s time to come back to the mundane.
I’m always a bit sad to leave that circle of protection between the worlds. It is cocoon-like and safe. Time does not exist there. In Buddhism, the space between the worlds is what we call emptiness.
I’d like to share a few lines from the “Heart Sutra” with you about that:
“In the Void There Are No Forms,
No Feelings, Perceptions, Volitions or Consciousness.”
“No Eye, Ear, Nose, Tongue, Body or Mind;
No Form, Sound, Smell, Taste, Touch or Mind Object;
No Realm of the Eye,
Until We Come to No realm of Consciousness.”
“No ignorance and Also No Ending of Ignorance,
Until We Come to No Old Age and Death and
No Ending of Old Age and Death.”
“Also, There is No Truth of Suffering,
Of the Cause of Suffering,
Of the Cessation of Suffering, Nor of the Path.”
“There is No Wisdom, and There is No Attainment Whatsoever.”
“Because There is Nothing to Be Attained,
The Bodhisattva Relying On Prajna Paramita Has
No Obstruction in His Mind.”
“Because There is No Obstruction, He Has no Fear,”
“And He passes Far Beyond Confused Imagination.”
“And Reaches Ultimate Nirvana.”