sacred space

DIVINATION 101: READING THE STONES

by on Jul.07, 2011, under divination, psychic training, ritual tools, sacred space, zzzzz

LESSON THREE

Hello my dears!

It’s been awhile since we looked at divination using the stones, or lithomancy. Previously, I had asked the readers participating in the study to set aside a time and place to sit with the stones that you’d chosen. I wrote about handling them, pulling stones at random to get impressions about meaning and symbol. I asked you to write down your impressions, but not reread them, and to not attach any importance to them as yet.

Buddha Stump

Buddha Stump

Now I’d like to ratchet things up a bit. If you remember, we have a collection of about a dozen or so stones of varying types that feel good to you, the reader. There should not be any massive enlightenment around any particular rock, that is not what this exercise is about. You’ve just picked up the stones that ‘feel good’. You’ve gained experience pulling them at random, at allowing your imagination to carry symbols into your mind. And at writing down some of those impressions and symbols.

Preparation

Now, I’d like you to pick out one night in the week. You can try any night that works for you, when you will be able to be private and peaceful. Set a time in the evening if you can, if not, the morning will also work. Allow 15 minutes to a half hour every time you do this. Keep your pad by you for notes. Sit in your private and quiet space, with your stones and a white candle. We use this candle to invoke peace, and to symbolize the bringing of the light of knowledge into the darkness of the hidden. If it comforts you, it would also be a good thing to allow the candle to symbolize the Light of the Divine, the Love of the Goddess, the Purity of Buddha, or any God-symbol that helps you to keep the frequency of the energy high and the energetic boundaries secure.

I also will bring a small container of salt into this space with me, for the same reasons. It’s just very purifying. You may add incense or essential oil of frankincense, sandalwood, rose, or another high vibrational scent. If you wear or carry a crystal that has special meaning to you, bring it as well and set it next to the candle. Crystals are especially appropriate here as they ‘related’ to your rocks. Begin to build up a tiny collection of things as an altar set up to help you read. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, although some of my altar set-ups when I was reading 35 to 50 clients per day got pretty extreme! For your own work, you might consider a tiny statue, a flower, salt, a crystal, a candle, incense or oil. Or just the white candle smeared with frankincense and rose oils would do. As always it is up to you.

Why the preparation? Well today we will begin to take a bit more interest in your internal messages. How are your journalling habits? I hope they are good, because they will be necessary for this exercise. In the interest of full disclosure, I must tell you that I suck at this. I am not the best journalling master. And it has shown in the amount of time that it has taken me to master some pretty basic things! But you will be fabulous and dedicated in this journalling exercise, I just know it!

st. john's reflections

st. john

The Exercise

Take your seat in your space. Light the candle, and your incense or oil diffuser. Close your eyes and breathe deeply and evenly for a few minutes. Pull your shoulders up to your ears and then drop them a couple times. You get the picture. Relax. Then place your hands on the bag that contains your reading stones and pull a total of three out. One at a time. Eyes still closed. Lay them in a line in front of you and open your eyes. Begin to write down your impressions as they occur. What does seeing these three stones make you think of? Location, events, individuals? Once you’ve looked at the grouping of stones, and how they are placed relative to each other, then look at each individual stone. Pick them up one by one and allow your impressions to flow thru you. Write down everything, even if you don’t think it is important. Once you are finished with the individual stones, look at the grouping once more. Any new impressions, now that you’ve take a closer look at each stone? Write them down. When you are done, replace your stones in the bag. Take a moment to express your gratitude for this opportunity to work in the Light. Pinch off your candle and close your journal.

In addition to the journal entry of the reading, I’d like you to keep notes of your week. They do not have to be extensive, but again, it is whatever you yourself are comfortable with. Only this time, allow yourself to look over your notes at the end of the week, on the night before you are to read again. As you read over your writing, can you see anywhere that correlates to impressions that you might have received when you last read? You may see things immediately, or perhaps not. Sometimes it take a long time for the things we see to manifest. I’ve had clients come up to me 5 years after a reading to tell me that ‘everything changed’ from that moment on, but it took 5 years for them to observe and understand events.

Conclusions

We are human and subject to minds that frantically attempt to be ‘logical’. Allow your imagination to work here, and enjoy observing events as they unfold around you. One thing, though. It helps if you can cultivate a certain distance from the events you observe.  Try to avoid jumping to conclusions.  Attempt to stay in observation mode.  If you allow your emotional body to become too disturbed by things you believe that you have foreseen, you can harm your own serenity and grounding. If you find yourself getting caught up, becoming sad or angry or emotionally reactive, have the discipline to set the readings aside for a few weeks, until you feel better about what you have seen. Keeping the journal going is a good thing, and when your system has settled you can begin to read the stones once more. There is no shame in having to take a break from the reading. The systems of the body that carry our intuitive and imaginative energies are much more subtle and easily disrupted than one would think. Care for them by not stressing them too much, until you feel more confident. Also, a good tonic tea made with valerian root and skullcap herb can do wonders for a new psychic’s jangling system!  And so can a good multi-vitamin, multi-mineral, or some green juice.  Replenish your system, and replace the minerals that the nerves need!  Oh, and try to stay away from reading your own family… just don’t go there!

Well that is all for now dearies! Be good and I will see you in a few days with more from NMOM.

Blessed Be,

Marie Angeli


all text and images ©2011 by Marie Angeli

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THE POINT IN THE CIRCLE

by on Jul.04, 2011, under history, magickal info, philosophy, rituals, sacred space

In the last post, I spoke about some of the connections between the different belief systems and the cross of manifestation, or the Rose Cross.  Today, I’d like to look at the circle.  Symbols and geometrics being fascinating things for ritual magicians, artists, and pagans.  So I ask your indulgence as we look at the question of “Circle…. what’s the point?”

There has been quite a lot written on the circle, on casting a circle, or gathering for ceremony.  Some of it was written on this blog! 🙂

Traditionally, ritualists see the circle as a symbol of a protected or defined space.  I say ‘defined’ because one needs to define one’s boundaries before one can hold them.  A circle is space in containment.  The point of that circle is the place within it that is equally distant from the edge all the way around.  OR, the circumference of a perfect circle is equally distant from the center point all the way round.

Why is this important?  Well, look at your experience.  In many pagan circles the altar is at the center.  In many hermetic temples, there is the double cube altar in the center. In medieval cathedrals, the high altar is at the point of the intersection of the central pillar and the extended arms.  In many native american ceremonies, the fire is in the center of the circle, at the intersection of the four directions.  There is some correlation in all these examples to real or practical life in the arrangements of dwelling spaces.  The tipi with the fire at the center and the smoke hole above, the circular thatched hut of stone age Britain with the same type of floor plan.  This correlation with real life example does not minimize the symbolic importance of the circle and the center point, but rather reminds us that it is our minds and ideas that create the mythology of our spiritual aspirations.

In Kandinsky’s Point and Line to Plane (a kabbalistic equation), the point is the place of the awakening of the creative force.  Paul Klee describes a line as a point ‘taking a walk’, so to him the point is the creative force.  On the Tree of Life, the Point is the symbol for Kether, the Crown, the I AM.  This is the Point of Creation, the Awakening of the Life force.  The ‘Point’ of Origin.

In ceremony, the point is surrounded by the circle.  On the Tree, as we move down the central pillar, the point is surrounded by the circle in Tiphareth.  The circle with the point in the center is the symbol for the Sun, the planet that rules the sphere of Tiphareth.  Tiphareth is the Heart center, as I wrote last time, and the Sun (son, Christos) has come to symbolize the Heart.  This sphere or sephirah or level of consciousness is considered to be the place at which we as humans know ‘God’ (goddess, Spirit, the Cosmic Mushroom, the Holy Guardian Angel).  It is interesting to think of the Point of Cosmic Awakening being surrounded by the circle of our human consciousness, the place where we and our Gods meet face to face.  Our own heart.  AND our sacred circles.

When we as pagans or magicians cast a circle, we are intending to meet our god/godesses, either by direct invocation, or by inference during ceremony.  If we are engaged in practical magick, the meeting of spirit with Spirit is a necessary part of raising the Power for the work, even when a formal circle may not literally be cast.

The next formation is the circle with the four directions stretching out.  The cross of the four directions.  This is often used as the astrological glyph for Earth, and is a symbol of Malkuth, the root sphere of the Tree of Life.  It is the formation of the sacred circle of many native american traditions, and is also the formation of most high magick temples and pagan circles.  Obviously in this symbol we have come to our point of spiritual awakening fully bound by consciousness (the circle) and rooted in earth (the four directions).

Why is it important to know this, or look at the symbolism of our ritual?  Knowledge is Power.  A knowledgeable ritual has more chance to be authentically powerful, than one driven by habit and superstition.  When we cast a circle, and the door between the worlds opens and we fully feel our connection with ‘Other’, it is because in our casting we ourselves have built this temple wherein the Connection may dwell.  And it is this Connection that is symbolized by the Point within the Circle.  It is this connection that informs our ceremony, and opens the Gate for our magick.

That’s all for now, dearies!  When next we meet, we’ll do some follow up for divination training, and then next week I’d like to begin to look at the Tarot.  There is also lots more coming for ceremony and ritual, so get out your grimoires!

Blessed be,

Marie Angeli

all text and images ©2011 Marie Angeli

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All Text and Images © 2010 - 2014 Marie Angeli

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The Tao

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