Witches’ Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram

Witches’ Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram

by Paul Hume

The following text was an addendum to some Wiccan friends of mine  written in 1986. It followed a fairly standard instruction in the  Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram, with which they were not  familiar. We were feeling out some linking techniques leading to a  proposed joint ritual involving several Wiccans and two ceremonial  qabalists (one Thelemite — ie. myself, and another). While events  conspired to torpedo this project, some interesting ideas came along  on both sides. The goal was a set of brief rituals meaningful to both traditions which we could practice individually, thus building up a group current prior to the date of the proposed rite (Samhain of that year). Herewith my notes on “The Wiccan Pentagram” ritual which evolved during this project. My primary source of God Forms was Paul Huson’s “Mastering Witchcraft” which was my main source of information on Wicca at the time (I’ve done considerable study elsewhere since).

Non-Solar symbolism

A ritual can be modified in many ways, to refit it for a different set of symbols, for example. I have taken the liberty of doing some  research into alternate symbols for the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram since I know that you work a lunar-feminine current (Wicca) whereas I use more solar-masculine symbols in my current (Thelemite). The  Qabalistic Cross This might be used as is, though you could use the  English if you don’t feel that the Hebrew is relevant. I am sure you recognize the words as being similar to the end of the Lord’s Prayer in the King James Version: ‘Unto thee, the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory, forever! Amen.’ I would point out that this formula was around a long time before Christ, much less the translators of the  Standard Revised Version of the Bible. If you dislike such a  specifically Christian form, it may be replaced with the words KETHER (KEH-THER), MALKUTH, GEBURAH, GEDULAH (or Crown, Kingdom, Power,  Mercy), the spheres of occult energy that you are invoking with the  Q-Cross. The mental images remain the same. You could even avoid these Hebrew symbols entirely, using Names and formulae more suitable to raising the Cone of Power, which is what you are doing here in Wiccan terms. See the ‘Wiccan Cross,’ below.

The principle is:

  1. Invoke strongly the presence of the Supreme Creative  Principle as you conceive it (or in your case, Her) to be.  Your Name for the Goddess as Creatrix would be most suitable.
  2. Draw down power from this Godhead and project it through  your body into the Earth. Invoke strongly the Supreme symbol of Creation in your Tradition: maybe the God — as Son of the  Goddess and Lord of the Trees, and as John Barleycorn, the ever-born and dying One.
  3. Establish on your right side the Active Principle — Yang — the Projective Energy of the Universe. A God image, I should think.
  4. Establish on yourleft side thePassive Principle — Yin — the Receiving Energy of the Universe. A Goddess force I feel.
  5. Strongly visualize yourself at the center of these axes  between the Infinities. This centers you at the middle of the  Sacred Space to be created — the still point at the center of the  universe.

 

The Pentagrams

Again, the pentagram should be used. This symbol is universal to many, many systems of magick, including Wicca, as you know. The  five-pointed star has supreme power over the Elements: Spirit, Fire, Water, Air and Earth. It drives off negative influences and attracts positive ones. It is an essential part of the rite and there is no symbol that can take its place as effectively.

The Names

I prefer using the Hebrew God-Names as is. In this connection  they express formulae that govern the Elements and are no more  religious than E=MC squared. However, there are equivalent Wiccan  God-Names, which I describe in the next section, as substitutes for  the Archangels. The use of the same Names to activate the stars and to invoke the Elemental force is quite in keeping with the Wiccan  tradition, which does not use the same hierarchical system of  God-Name, Archangel, Angel, Ruler, Spirit, etc. that Qabalism does.

The Archangelic Invocation

Instead of the Hebrew Archangels I described, you could use  Wiccan Deities to invoke the ‘pure’ form of the Elements.

AIR-EAST: The Air image in Wicca seems to be masculine and  relates to Herne, the Black Man, the messenger of the Gods, or  the Sky Gods: Odin, or Lugh as the rising Sun God. The God can be imagined as riding through the night sky, at the head of the Wild Hunt, or rising above the branches of the world-ash. Instead of the Sword given to Raphael, the God might carry a staff, spear or wand, which is attributed to Air in most Wiccan traditions.

FIRE-SOUTH: The Fire image is definitely masculine and relates  to the Horned God: Cernunnos, Lucifer, call Him what you will.  He stands in the hot light of the noonday sun, radiating fiery  energy. He would bear an Athame or sword, which is the weapon of Fire in most Wiccan styles.

WATER-WEST: The Water image is the Maiden, the mistress of the  Moon and the Tides: Aradia, Artemis, Venus rising from the  waves. Her image is lit by the silver light of the moon, upon a  tranquil reach of water or the foaming sea. She might hold the  chalice, symbol of water (alternatively, the cauldron might be  envisioned).

EARTH-NORTH: The Goddess in Her aspect as Earth Mother is here:  Hertha, Habondia, Demeter. She stands beneath the golden, life-giving sun surrounded by the fruits of the Earth. Before her, a platter flows with good things of the Earth, for the  disk/shield/platter is the pentacle, magick instrument of Earth.  These are only bare sketches of the magickal images that a witch  might use to replace the Qabalistic images of the traditional  pentagram ritual. I offer them for what they are worth.

A few points to note:

  1. The phases of the sun used in the Archangelic images  (East:Dawn; South:Noon; West:Sunset; North:Midnight) are not the same, nor are they as important to Wicca. Instead, the poles of day and night are established: Night for the East-West axis and Day for the North-South axis.
  2. The male-female poles are established with the masculine images (Herne and Cernunnos) attributed to the active Elements (Air  and Fire) and the feminine images (Aradia and Habondia) to the passive Elements (Water and Earth). Note that one figure of each gender stands in light, and one in darkness. This male-female/positive-negative/active-passive polarity is central to  virtually all systems of magick, eg. the yin/yang symbol in oriental systems. I may be betraying solar-phallic tendencies by these  assignments, and you may want to use different attributions: The  Maiden can be Air and the Mother switch to Water, with the Hunter  moving into Earth, for example. Heck, the dual God Forms should  perhaps be invoked in each quarter. eg. Venus/Adonis imagery in East or South, Hertha/Herne in West, etc.

 

The Star Of David

The last line of the Invocation refers to a ‘six-rayed star’ and the mental work calls for imagining a Star of David. This is not a specifically Jewish symbol in this context. The six-pointed star, or hexagram, is the Qabalistic symbol par excellence of initiation and  spiritual illumination. The upward-pointing triangle represents the aspiration of the magician to the Gods, and the downward-pointing  triangle represents the divine power, flowing down to the world.  These meet at the moment of magick and the interlaced triangles  forming the hexagram symbolize the power of this meeting. Should you prefer not to use the Star of David, you can replace the mental image with any symbol showing the meeting of your soul and the power of the Goddess. This can even be a private symbol, one that is meaningful  only to you. Alternatively, you can just envision the sphere of white light from the Q-Cross, as a symbol of divine power. Replace the words about the ‘six-rayed star’ with some descriptive form: ‘the seal of the Goddess,’ or ‘the sign of my Awakening,’ or simply ‘the light Divine.’

Wiccan Pentagram ritual

Rubric [This is a form of the rite incorporating the changes in symbolism discussed above]

WICCAN CROSS

 

Face East. Touch forehead. Say IO EVOE HERTHA  (‘Blessed be Hertha,’ or other Name by which you worship the Goddess as Creatrix) Touch solar plexus or genitals. Say IO EVOE CERNUNNOS (‘Blessed be Cernunnos,’ or other name by which you worship the Horned God as the Earth) Touch right shoulder. Say EKO EKO AZARAK (‘Hail, hail force of fire’) Touch left shoulder. Say EKO EKO AMELAK (‘Hail, hail to the glory’) Extend arms in form of a cross. Say IO EVOE (‘Blessed be.’) Clasp hands upon breast and say ‘So mote it be.’

CIRCLE OF PROTECTION

 

Trace pentagram in East. Say HERNE. Trace circle of protection until facing South. Trace pentagram in South. Say CERNUNNOS. Trace circle of protection until facing West. Trace  pentagram in West. Say ARADIA. Trace circle of protection until facing North. Trace pentagram in North. Say HABONDIA. Finish tracing circle, closing it in the East.

INVOCATION OF THE GREAT GODS

 

Return to center of circle and face East. Extend arms in form of a cross. Chant: Before me HERNE The Huntsman Behind me ARADIA The Maiden On my right hand CERNUNNOS, the Horned God On my left hand HABONDIA, the Great Mother About me flame the pentagrams And above me shines the light of the Goddess.

Repeat the Wiccan Cross. Rather than performing this in the rather  measured cadences of Qabalistic Ritual, a form of dancing and chanting more pleasing to the God-forms of Wicca might profitably be devised.

The Witches Spell for October 25th – Simple Yet Powerful Healing Spell

SIMPLE YET POWERFUL HEALING SPELL

1 blue candle (light blue)

Grains of paradise

Cinnamon oil

Clear Quartz Crystal w/ black tourmaline through it

Anoint the blue candle with cinnamon oil (be careful not to touch your eyes or face, or any other part of your body with oil before washing your hands.) This oil is very powerful and carries high spiritual vibes and Healing vibes. From the center of the candle outward, to each end, rub the oil on the candle while visualizing you friend and saying “this candle is ….”. Light it.

Sit and feel the earth beneath you facing north. Feel the moving and yet stable and powerful life force in the ground. Feel your spine connected to the deep earth and turn your consciousness to the center of yourself. You are in a place of stillness and there is nothing else but you and this time and space.

Know that to your right is the archangel Raphael. He is the physician / and musician. Call to him and ask him to protect and bless your eastern gate.

Behind you is Michael. He is the Archangel of the south. He is the warrior. Strong and fearless and brave. He does not fight without a cause. Call and ask him to guard and bless your southern gate.

To your left is Gabriel. He is the Archangel of initiation. Ask for his blessings and protection of the western gate. He will lead you and help you.

In front of you is Uriel. He is the Archangel of death and natural law. He will never take anyone before their time. He will allow people to experience what they need to grow spiritually. He is very lawful and trustworthy. Ask him to guard and protect your northern gate. Tell him you do not want him take your beloved friend.

Take the grains of paradise and split into four sections ( hand full, about a teaspoon ). Take up one section at a time. Go to each quarter separately. Hold up the fist full of grains and state your wish.

Empower it and state it as a fact not a question. Make it a statement. (Like…,”….. is well and healed. She feels good and strong and will continue to go into remission.) then throw the grains as far as you can. Do this for each direction. Take the crystal to the four directions and ask the Archangels to bless and charge the stone. Be specific about what you think each with their gift they should bring to your friend.

Then pass the stone through the flame of the candle (do not burn yourself!). Chant over it while visualizing your friend happy and healthy and glowing with white and golden light.

This is the spell that I intone
flesh to flesh and bone to bone
Sinew to sinew and vein to vein
each one shall be whole again.

Then set the stone down in front of the candle. Let the candle burn out. When it is done, put the stone in a crystal pouch and give it to your friend to keep near him/her.

The Wicca Book Of Days for February 16 – Raphael to the Rescue!

The Wicca Book of Days for February 16th

Raphael to the Rescue!

If you are ailing and feel that you could do with some angelic first aid, calling on Raphael would be especially efficacious, for the element of air corresponds to this Archangel, as it does to Aquarius, the zodiacal sign that rules this February day. Raphael, whose magick color is sky blue, is furthermore considered to be the Guardian of the East and the angelic entity that presides over Spring. Said to have miraculous powers of healing (the Apocrypha relates how he restored the blind Tobit’s sight with fish gall). Raphael is also regarded as a patron Saint of physicians, pharmacists, and apothecaries.

“A Bolt from the Blue”

If you have a set of Tarot cards, look hard at the major-arcana card of the Lightning-struck Tower (XVI) on this sixteenth day of February. You may increasingly gain the sense that spiritual illumination can shatter your defenses like a thunderbolt from the blue, or that turmoil is on the cards.

Saint of the Day for July 24 is St. Michael, the Archangel

Saint of the Day

St. Michael, the Archangel

Patron of grocers, mariners, paratroopers, police, and sickness

St. Michael, the Archangel – Feast day – September 29th The name Michael signifies “Who is like to God?” and was the warcry of the good angels in the battle fought in heaven against satan and his followers. Holy Scripture describes St. Michael as “one of the chief princes,” and leader of the forces of heaven in their triumph over the powers of hell. He has been especially honored and invoked as patron and protector by the Church from the time of the Apostles.

Although he is always called “the Archangel,” the Greek Fathers and many others place him over all the angels – as Prince of the Seraphim. St. Michael is the patron of grocers, mariners, paratroopers, police and sickness.