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Author Topic: Short book on a Pentagram ritual  (Read 1946 times)

KLee

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Short book on a Pentagram ritual
« on: January 30, 2020, 08:47:49 am »
Pentagram Ritual
Hi!
I found bunch of books on Wicca and paganism, and above is a short one. I would appreciate if anyone could review it, please.
Thanks!!

Jenett

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Re: Short book on a Pentagram ritual
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2020, 12:46:38 pm »
Pentagram Ritual
Hi!
I found bunch of books on Wicca and paganism, and above is a short one. I would appreciate if anyone could review it, please.
Thanks!!

So, this is (as the text mentions) a really standard method in ceremonial magic (and a number of other magical practices). It's not something I use regularly in my practice (for reasons I'll talk about below), but it is something I teach and find useful in very specific circumstances (also below).

One thing it has going for it is that a lot of people have used it regularly over the years, in this particular form, and that can build up a lot of energetic weight and oomph behind it. I've also seen it used effectively at larger community events as a method of clearing energy and space that many people are at least modestly familiar with.

But there are a few things you'd want to think about before using it:

1: Focus
The more common name for this is the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram or LBRP - so there's an immediate question you should ask yourself, which is 'what are you banishing here, and what does doing that banishing mean for you?"

There are a bunch of possible answers, but with any kind of magical or ritual practice, it's a good idea to think about what you're doing, why you're doing it that way, and what your desired results might look like before you do the thing.

2: Cosmology
This ritual deliberately calls on a specific cosmology that derives from Christian and Jewish practices. This is great for some people, and a problem for others.

As someone who was formerly an active Christian (and Catholic, for most of my deliberate choices about that), I land on "That is a fine tradition, and it is no longer my tradition". Coming back to it in this form feels like putting on weirdly weighted clothing that throws everything else off, and makes me massively less functional. (see amusing footnote at the end of this.)

3: Connections
All of those names and beings you are calling upon - well, they're entities that will be more inclined to help you (or help you more) if you build up a relationship with them beyond saying "Hey, do this thing". So in terms of ritual theory, thinking through how this fits into other things that might build up interactions with them (or the energies they direct/represent) is worth doing.

There are some LBRP versions out there that have replaced the names/powers with other combinations. I've generally found these less effective (they have less weight of people doing the same thing over time behind them, plus this is a particular style of ritual working that is heavily rooted in Western European magical systems of the medieval and renaissance to begin with, with all the social, cultural, and magical assumptions that brings). But I know that combinations built on personal connections and interactions have often been quite effective for individual people.

4: Pentagrams
On a technical note, I agree that the pentagram sets out there vary a lot, and picking one and running with it for consistency is highly preferable, but the ones in that document are also not the ones I use.

5: When I use it
There are two times I've found it really useful.

One is that it does sometimes come up as a general method of clearing and resetting space for magical work in the larger magical and/or Pagan community (so it's handy to know how it goes). And when doing particular kinds of protection or clearing work, especially in spaces with people who are Christian or who are aligned with that religious tradition to some degree, it is often a method that can be reasonable agreeable to all parties.

(Footnote: I feel like this Leverage clip a lot when doing the LBRP, in fact, though I suspect it does not make a ton of sense without more context.)
« Last Edit: January 30, 2020, 12:48:43 pm by Jenett »
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KLee

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Re: Short book on a Pentagram ritual
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2020, 02:57:49 am »
Thank you for the reply!

So, this is (as the text mentions) a really standard method in ceremonial magic (and a number of other magical practices). It's not something I use regularly in my practice (for reasons I'll talk about below), but it is something I teach and find useful in very specific circumstances (also below).

One thing it has going for it is that a lot of people have used it regularly over the years, in this particular form, and that can build up a lot of energetic weight and oomph behind it. I've also seen it used effectively at larger community events as a method of clearing energy and space that many people are at least modestly familiar with.

But there are a few things you'd want to think about before using it:

1: Focus
The more common name for this is the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram or LBRP - so there's an immediate question you should ask yourself, which is 'what are you banishing here, and what does doing that banishing mean for you?"

There are a bunch of possible answers, but with any kind of magical or ritual practice, it's a good idea to think about what you're doing, why you're doing it that way, and what your desired results might look like before you do the thing.

2: Cosmology
This ritual deliberately calls on a specific cosmology that derives from Christian and Jewish practices. This is great for some people, and a problem for others.

As someone who was formerly an active Christian (and Catholic, for most of my deliberate choices about that), I land on "That is a fine tradition, and it is no longer my tradition". Coming back to it in this form feels like putting on weirdly weighted clothing that throws everything else off, and makes me massively less functional. (see amusing footnote at the end of this.)

3: Connections
All of those names and beings you are calling upon - well, they're entities that will be more inclined to help you (or help you more) if you build up a relationship with them beyond saying "Hey, do this thing". So in terms of ritual theory, thinking through how this fits into other things that might build up interactions with them (or the energies they direct/represent) is worth doing.

There are some LBRP versions out there that have replaced the names/powers with other combinations. I've generally found these less effective (they have less weight of people doing the same thing over time behind them, plus this is a particular style of ritual working that is heavily rooted in Western European magical systems of the medieval and renaissance to begin with, with all the social, cultural, and magical assumptions that brings). But I know that combinations built on personal connections and interactions have often been quite effective for individual people.

4: Pentagrams
On a technical note, I agree that the pentagram sets out there vary a lot, and picking one and running with it for consistency is highly preferable, but the ones in that document are also not the ones I use.

5: When I use it
There are two times I've found it really useful.

One is that it does sometimes come up as a general method of clearing and resetting space for magical work in the larger magical and/or Pagan community (so it's handy to know how it goes). And when doing particular kinds of protection or clearing work, especially in spaces with people who are Christian or who are aligned with that religious tradition to some degree, it is often a method that can be reasonable agreeable to all parties.

(Footnote: I feel like this Leverage clip a lot when doing the LBRP, in fact, though I suspect it does not make a ton of sense without more context.)


Thank you for the reply!
1. Mainly I'm doing it to try and relieve a symptom related to medical drug withdrawal (at least I think it's related). Then for other reasons like gaining some connection to the spiritual realms, and for overall health. I didn't notice this is a banishing ritual, so everytime I drew the pentagram in the Invocation method (I already did it for few days, in the early mornings). Will this be a problem? But generally I'm not asking to "banish" my problem, but to bless me with a healthy body, and mind. Is that still Banishing? If so, what to change?
2. I don't consider myself a devotee to any religion. But I mainly prefer Buddhist and Non-duality (Neo-Advaita) paths. Though, I like some aspects of the Christian religion too -- Christ, Angels -- So, I think I don't feel awkward saying Raphael or Micheal etc.
3. I never say to them "Do this.". First I bow them in the Buddhist style for coming, imagine that they are healing my specific problem. Afterwards I bow again for helping. Is that a preferable way of doing it?
4. I'm not getting you there (Sorry, noob here). You mean you use a different kind of pentagrams?

Finally, I should say that I've added my own extra stuff to it. I always do it standing inside a large pentacle drawn on the floor. Candles and incense too.  First I meditate before I do it. I play Native American healing chants while doing it. Is it OK to mix all of those? I'm doing all that cuz my mind is not an one that easily calms down to do spiritual things.

Thanks for reading! Further inputs/advises from you is much appreciated. 

PerditaPickle

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Re: Short book on a Pentagram ritual
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2020, 06:10:14 pm »
Further inputs/advises from you is much appreciated.

Hi there.  This post isn't so much of a spirituality related one, but reading your last post I thought these sites might be of use to you, in conjunction with what you are already doing:-

https://www.meditainment.com/pain-management-meditation

https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/podcasts-and-videos/podcasts-for-your-wellbeing

Hope one or both of these are accessible to you wherever you are in the world, and maybe of some help/interest.

Jenett

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Re: Short book on a Pentagram ritual
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2020, 07:04:17 pm »
Thank you for the reply!

First, when you reply to a post, we really appreciate it if you cut down the response. (Especially if the post you're replying to is long, and mine tend to be!)

To follow the board rules on quoting, you need to leave in the quote code at the top, that links back to the post you're replying to, and the close quote at the end (this makes the linking work), but you can and should cut down the material between those to just enough to help people follow the conversation, or perhaps a section you are specifically replying to where having the original is useful. (As I did below).

For example, the quote code for my quote of you above looks like this:

Code: [Select]
[quote author=KLee link=topic=17148.msg226305#msg226305 date=1580630269]
Thank you for the reply!
[/quote]

Quote
1. Mainly I'm doing it to try and relieve a symptom related to medical drug withdrawal (at least I think it's related). Then for other reasons like gaining some connection to the spiritual realms, and for overall health. I didn't notice this is a banishing ritual, so everytime I drew the pentagram in the Invocation method (I already did it for few days, in the early mornings). Will this be a problem? But generally I'm not asking to "banish" my problem, but to bless me with a healthy body, and mind. Is that still Banishing? If so, what to change?


So, this depends a lot on your larger philosophy or cosmology - I can't answer this for you, I can only point at some more things so you can decide what you want to do.

The LBRP is, as I said, a banishing ritual. It clears things out. It's the magical equivalent of a thorough spring cleaning, on a manageable daily level. It's effective, but sometimes a brisk spring cleaning isn't actually the effect you want. Sometimes - maybe often! - you want things to be tidy, but you don't want the sterile feeling of everything having been scrubbed down with bleach.

You could indeed do it with a focus on banishing things keeping you from a healthy body, or banishing things that are slowing your recovery. However, it's more meant for more energy-related needs, not physical (they're interrelated, but if you want to focus on 'help my body do this thing' there are perhaps better techniques.)

Some people do the LBRP for banishing regularly (like daily) and find it useul, but I've also heard some pretty compelling arguments that doing it that often means you're banishing *helpful* stuff from around you, or at least disrupting it regularly, which may or may not be what you want long-term. \

You mention having more of a Buddhist approach, so one theory that's related is that if you do a higher-strength banishing, you're disrupting the beneficial interactions of local spirits, nature spirits, ancestors, etc. who may not have as tight a hold on the immediate physical realm. If you'd like to cultivate relationships with those being in the long-term (and ask for their help), doing something that's cleansing and restorative without being as actively banishing (or doing the banishing, say, once a week) might lead to better balance.

I want to make it clear this isn't a thing that has one answer: it's a choice that has consequences for your immediate magical practice and your long-term practice. You can change your mind later, and more than likely build or rebuild different relationships, but it's not a choice that you're making that only affects the moment of you doing the LBRP.

In terms of the pentagrams, using the methods that have historically been used keeps the historical weight behind them. (More on that below).

If I were working on clearing this kind of physical thing, I would be looking at something like the following (because, again, the LBRP is not my preferred style for like five reasons...).I have explanations on my website of what I mean by them and some starting points for learning them.

- Regular centering work (understanding what's me, what isn't, and what might be the effects of the medication being processed out by my body).

- Grounding (managing my own energy)

- Shielding (as relevant) - filtering the energy around me so I can manage it (a lot of meds make us more or less sensitive to some kinds of energy: when I have med changes, I usually need to do some adjustment to my energy management routines)

- Cleansing, both to get rid of extra stuff sticking to me (this is a thing the LBRP does really well, but there are plenty of less banishing-focused options), and to help my body process and get rid of the medication and its side effects.

- Support my body in doing that - plenty of rest (not just sleep, but also taking it physically easy regularly so my body can readjust without distraction), and supporting the physical mechanism for processing that particular drug (if it's water soluble, stay well hydrated. If it's processed through a particular organ, like the liver or kidneys, do things to make that easier with my food/exercise/etc. choices.)

None of these is a clear single ritual the way the LBRP is, where you do the steps, and it mostly works. They require ongoing practise (think of it a little like learning to play an instrument or any other new skill, rather than following a new recipe when you already have cooking skills.) And you'll notice a bunch of them are very pragmatic doing stuff the physical body appreciates.

(Meditations like PerditaPickle suggested, also an option!)

Quote
3. I never say to them "Do this.". First I bow them in the Buddhist style for coming, imagine that they are healing my specific problem. Afterwards I bow again for helping. Is that a preferable way of doing it?

It's a modality and style issue. The LBRP comes from a magical tradition that is, frankly, very 'western European mostly men who give commands'. Command giving is part of the assumption set. If you want to ask, rather than demand or expect or command, you're working in a different mode than the ritual expects.

With the LBRP that's mostly okay (you're working with specific beings who are glad to help, and you're asking them to do things that they generally like to help with), but if you try this with some other rituals, even some pretty closely related ones, that may not be the case.

The structure of the ritual also means that frankly, you might just get better results by building up a relationship with one or more of them (or another deity/being associated with healing you like), and asking them for healing.

Quote
4. I'm not getting you there (Sorry, noob here). You mean you use a different kind of pentagrams?

As the file you linked to says, there are multiple variants of how you can draw invoking and banishing pentagrams. The ones in the document (the Golden Dawn ones) are not the ones I use. My own experience has been that consistency and intention matter, but which set you pick is less of an issue, unless you are working in a magical or ritual system that feels super strongly about it.

(This is one of the reasons that picking and choosing material from different traditions can get complicated really fast.)

Quote
Finally, I should say that I've added my own extra stuff to it. I always do it standing inside a large pentacle drawn on the floor. Candles and incense too.  First I meditate before I do it. I play Native American healing chants while doing it. Is it OK to mix all of those? I'm doing all that cuz my mind is not an one that easily calms down to do spiritual things.

I wouldn't be okay with some of this, but I'm not the one doing it.

When adding things to a ritual, I care a lot about thinking through why I'm adding that. In this case, what are the purposes of the large pentacle and the candles and incense? (If it's for atmosphere, fine! But it seems like a lot of work for something you're doing daily that could be done in other ways).

In my tradition, candles and incense are used for specific purposes, which don't apply in the LBRP (for example, candles in ritual are largely to provide a place for entities to 'sit' - a space that is for them, during the ritual. Because of the way the LBRP works, that's not really an issue, since you're not expecting them to stick around for a long time: the ritual is very 'show up, do the thing, go away'.

I also am very cautious about adding things from other traditions if I don't understand them sufficiently. There's a lot of material out there that labels itself as "Native American healing chants" that is appropriative, misleading, unspecific, or where there are contextual pieces that aren't available/clear if you aren't a part of that particular tribe. So personally, I'd avoid anything labelled like that, and look for either music composed specifically for healing, or music from a religious and musical tradition I do understand.

(I'm previously Catholic, so while I won't use Christian music in actual ritual, I do sometimes use Hildegard von Bingen or some other medieaval sources in my personal work.)
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