Articles/Essays From Pagans
June 14th. 2015 ...
Why I Bother With Ritual: Poetry and Eikonic Atheism
June 7th. 2015 ...
A Pagan Altar
The Consort: Silent Partner or Hidden in Plain Sight?
A Minority of a Minority of a Minority
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Sex, Lies, and Witches: Love in a Time of Wiccans and Atheists
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13 Keys: The Crown of Kether
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A Thread in the Tapestry of Witchcraft
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On Wiccan Magick, Theurgy, Thaumaturgy and Setting Expectations
March 1st. 2015 ...
Choosing to Write a Shadow Book
My Concept Of Grey
Historiolae: The Spell Within the Story
February 1st. 2015 ...
Seeker Advice From a Coven Leader
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The Gods of My Heart
January 1st. 2015 ...
The Six Most Valuable Lessons I've Learned on My Path as a Witch
Manipulation of the Concept of Witchcraft
Publicly Other: Witchcraft in the Suburbs
Pagans All Around Us
Broomstick to the Emerald City
October 20th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits
A Microcosmic View of Ma'at
October 5th. 2014 ...
The History of the Sacred Circle
Abandoning Expectations and Remembering Your Roots
September 28th. 2014 ...
Seeking Pagan Lands for Pagan Burials
Creating a Healing Temple
September 20th. 2014 ...
GOD AND ME (A Pagan's Personal Reply to the New Atheists)
September 7th. 2014 ...
Deer Man- A Confounding Mystery
August 31st. 2014 ...
Coven vs. Solitary
A Strange Waking Dream
August 24th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
The Pagan Cleric
A Gathering of Sorcerers (A Strange Tale)
August 17th. 2014 ...
To Know, to Will, to Dare...
On Grief: Beacons of Light in the Shadows
August 10th. 2014 ...
As a Pagan, How Do I Represent My Path?
The Power of the Gorgon
August 3rd. 2014 ...
Are You a Natural Witch?
You Have to Believe We Are Magic...
July 27th. 2014 ...
Did I Just Draw Down the Moon?
Astrological Ages and the Great Astrological End-Time Cycle
The New Jersey Finishing School for Would-Be Glamour Girls and Boys
July 20th. 2014 ...
Being an Underage Wiccan
Greed, Power, Witches, and the Inquisition
Malleus Maleficarum - The Hammer of the Witches
Thoughts on Ghost Hunting
July 13th. 2014 ...
A World Of Witchcraft: Belief Is Only The Beginning...
From Christian to Pagan (Part III)
My Wiccan Ways...
July 6th. 2014 ...
Keys: Opening the Portals into Other Worlds
The Lore of the Door
Leaves of Love
June 29th. 2014 ...
What Does the Bible Say About Witches and Pagans?
Are You My Familiar ?
Everything's Alright, Yes: Mary Magdalene
Invocations of the God and Goddess
Results Magic and the Moral Compass
June 22nd. 2014 ...
Witchcraft vs. Religion
Christianity and Paganism: Why All Of the Fighting?
June 15th. 2014 ...
Becoming Your Own Wise One
Canine Familiars: Role of the Alpha
June 8th. 2014 ...
Moral Relativism and Wicca
Paganism in Cebu, Philippines
June 1st. 2014 ...
Rediscovering My Pagan Faith
13 Keys: The Wisdom of Chokmah
May 25th. 2014 ...
Some Differences Between Priestesses and Witches: Duties and Trials
How to Work With Your Muse
Awakening to our Celestial Nature (A Free 8-Day Course)
10 Things I Love about my Sacred Work as a Public Witch
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Some Tips for Making Ritual Feel Real
Article ID: 13124
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Decorate your altar, shrine and ritual space with items that relate (in your mind) to the ritual purpose. Use colors, scent, images, and tools to their best effect.
If you are doing a very masculine working, do not put pink flowers on your altar. Put images and items that have a masculine feel to and meaning to you.
If you are doing a hearth and home related ritual, put a dollhouse in the room, cut out images of fireplaces from a magazine and tack them on the wall.
Do not bother with placing items that will not be used or useful during the ritual, only use what is going to be really helpful. If there is a print on the wall that does not relate to your ritual, take it down, or hang a piece of fabric over it. Cut out the distractions as much as possible.
Do not worry about the proper correspondences as written in a book; think about what gives you the right impressions, thoughts and feelings. It is all about your mind connecting your surroundings with the ritual purpose.
Donít sweat the small stuff. Do allow yourself to become distracted by silly little things, like almost tripping, almost spilling, slipping up a few words, and the clock ticking in the next room. Do not worry about making a fool of yourself, if your makeup is getting smeared, if your deodorant is holding up. These are all distractions. They do not matter.
Donít rush! Slow down and take your time. Rushing through a ritual will not give it that deep meaning; you will gain nothing from it. If your rituals are too long, cut the fat. Trim it down to only what is really important, so that you can spend the proper amount of time focusing on that.
Move! Dance, clap, stomp, sway, and wave your arms around. Just standing there shuffling your feet does not help to build energy, it also does not help you to feel the ritual. It may seem a tad silly, but if you are finding a lack of emotion, a lack of meaning in your ritual, try doing an interpretive dance, act out your ritual. Tap your foot in time to the words you are speaking.
Do your own personal sign language. If you are saying something about the moon, draw a circle or crescent in the air with your hand or ritual tool. If you are trying to connect with the feminine divine, touch your breasts (if you are a woman) , draw the shape of a woman in the air, hold you arms as if stroking a pregnant belly or as if you are holding a baby. When contacting a god, touch your crouch (if you are a man) , or draw a hammer, a phallus or horns or oak leaf in the air in front of you.
Stand up straight, lie down, sit up, lean to one side and then the other, hop on one foot, and use those hand signs and body postures found in Paganism 101 books.
Say it like you mean it. One of my best teachers was into drama and acting. She used to shout at us during ritual ďEmote dammit! Say it like you mean it!Ē donít just read off of some page in a monotone, say it with feeling, drama, and meaning.
When you are inviting entities into your ritual, speak with welcome in your voice, say it as if you were inviting a friend in to your home.
Do not rush through a prayer, chant or poem as quickly as possible. Take the time to carefully speak each line, with feeling. Repeat if necessary.
Pretend you are an actor on a stage where your audience is hard of hearing and far away. Emote and project. Speak from the heart and use your belly voice, as acting and singing instructors would say. Singing and chanting rather than speaking can also help you to inject emotion into your words. So try it, even if you do not have a great voice.
Use your imagination. Thatís what visualizing is all about. Using your imagination will help you to connect with your creative side, the right side of your brain, the part of you that does not worry about logic, but that relies on feelings and intuition.
Practice, practice, practice. Do not give up if things just donít feel like they are working the first time. Try it again; try everything at least three times before moving on to something else. The first couple of times you perform a new ritual, you will feel rather awkward, thatís perfectly natural. You cannot truly find that spiritual connection until you have become somewhat comfortable with what you are doing.
Do not expect results right away, the very first time. This rarely happens for people. Also it can be a good idea to practice at home, alone a couple of times before you go and join in a group ritual.
Feel it, really feel it. Donít just go through the motions. If you feel that you are, stop! Take a few deep breaths and remind yourself what you are doing and why. Find your motivation. Say it out loud, think it, picture it in your mind, and really feel it. Draw it, paint it, and write poetry about it.
Do whatever you need to do before a ritual to make sure the purpose of the ritual is fresh in your mind and filling your heart. At each step along they way during a ritual, stop for a second and reaffirm what you are doing and why.
Keep the ritual purpose in the forefront of your mind and heart.
A good ritual, a really truly good ritual should bring you to the brink of tears, happy or sad. People have often made fun of me for getting choked up or actually crying during ritual. They donít get it, not at all.
If you really want results, you need to bring your heart fully into it. If you want a ritual to have meaning, you must give it meaning. You must really feel it; you must put that feeling into it.
Laugh, cry, shout, sing, dance, smile, and do it like you mean it! If you do not mean it, you shouldnít be doing it. If you do not mean it deep in your mind, heart and soul, you will never have that special spiritual experience you seek.
Copyright: This article is the work of Juniper of Walking the Hedge, in the year 2009. Feel free to distribute, just give me credit.
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
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