This article is Part Four of a series. Part One can be found here, Part Two can be found here, and Part Three can be found here.
This article is the fourth entry in my Elemental Work series, covering the element of Fire. The basic symbol set of the Western Magical Tradition consists of the elements, planets, and signs of the zodiac, and realistically an effective magician should be familiar with how to work with all of them. This is the final entry of the series, wrapping it up with the element of Fire. As an aside, it seems appropriate to be posting this on Independence Day, which is celebrated with fireworks here in the United States.
The elemental schema used in the Thelemic and Golden Dawn systems involves five elements, adding Spirit to the classical arrangement. I will probably put together a ritual for Spirit at some point, but as there are only four traditional elemental Kings, the ritual will be significantly different in a number of respects from these four traditional operations. In effect, it will constitute its own ritual form, rather than partaking of the one used here.
If you've already read through the last three posts, you will probably find parts of this one repetitive. That's intentional, as I want each of these posts to be able to stand on its own without reference to the others. Incidentally, this has been one of the biggest challenges for me with respect to my Enochian books. I want each book to stand on its own, but at the same time I want to make sure that I re-hash as little as I can get away with.
According to the ancient Greek system, each element arises from the interaction of the Powers, which many modern magicians do not work with or even know about. The four powers are Warm/Cool and Moist/Dry. The Warm power separates things, while the Cool power merges them together. The Moist power breaks down structure, while the Dry power reinforces it.
I will not be going into a full discourse on the Powers and how they relate to the elements, but if you would like to delve deeper into the symbolism I recommend that you check out The Ancient Greek Esoteric Doctrine of the Elements by John Opsopaus. The links from that main page will allow you to explore these aspects of the classical elements, along with a lot of other related symbolism.
Fire is the least dense of the traditional elements. According to Liber 777 the powers associated with Fire are Evocation and Pyromancy. Fire corresponds to the Warm power mixed with the Dry power, so it divides things and reinforces that divided, broken down structure, keeping them separated to the greatest degree possible.
The symbol of the elements is the pentagram, which is also the symbol of the microcosm. However, depending upon the type of magical field you open for your operation, the elements may be invoked within the microcosmic realm, the macrocosmic realm, or both. The Pentagram of Fire is traced either moving towards or moving away from the lower right point of the pentagram. It is visualized in red.
There are multiple systems for tracing elemental pentagrams. The one that I use is the Golden Dawn version, and the alternate version is that used by the Aurum Solis and described in the Magical Philosophy series by Melita Denning and Osbourne Philips. On the surface, the AS method is more logical and consistent with the planetary hexagrams. However, in my experience it simply does not work as well. Still, if you do use that system and get good results with it, you can substitute the AS version for the GD version that I use here.
The Elemental King of Fire is named Djin and the elemental spirits native to his domain are called Salamanders. The godname corresponding to Fire is Elohim, and the elemental prayer that precedes the conjuration is from Eliphas Levi, with a few small modifications made over the years by our magical working group to better reflect some aspects of "New Aeon" principles. The originals can be found online, and you can substitute those for the ones used here if you prefer them.
To create the sigil for Djin, you trace his name onto the Kamea of the Moon. First, you transliterate the name to Hebrew. With Djin, this is slightly messy because the J-sound does not exist in Hebrew. The closest is Y, which is Yod, the letter that also correspond to the vowel i. So what you would wind up with if you went letter by letter is Daleth Yod Yod Nun, which is not done.
So the best way to break down the spelling here is Daleth Yod Nun, with the Yod acting as a consonant with the i-sound falling to a vowel marker. Daleth, Yod, Nun numerates to 4, 10, and 50. The numbers on the 9 x 9 lunar square go to 81, so none of them need to be modified to fit onto the square. The sigil traced onto the lunar Kamea looks like this:
There are different traditions out there with respect to beginning and ending sigils. The method I use is derived from my understanding of John Dee's Monas Hieroglyphica. Dee explains in the text that the circle and the straight line are essentially the building blocks of reality. The circle refers to undifferentiated potential while the straight line refers to particular manifestations.
So for practical manifestation work, in which the flow of mezla is being called from the top of the Tree of Life to the bottom, I start with a circle (unmanifest potential) and end with a straight line (specific manifestation). For mystical work, in which I am calling upon a spirit to aid in my ascent up the Tree, I start with a straight line and end with a circle.
This sigil, then, should be traced over the character of the Moon exactly as it appears on the Kamea, as the character represents the entire square taken as a whole. The final figure then, should look something like this:
Ideally, the sigil should be rendered in colors from all four scales from Liber 777. These are:
King (Atziluth): Glowing Orange Scarlet.
Queen (Briah): Vermillion.
Emperor (Yetzirah, Prince): Scarlet flecked Gold.
Empress (Assiah, Princess): Vermillion flecked Crimson and Emerald.
The colors for the sigil are not absolutely necessary, but using them will allow your manifestation to more completely manifest on all four of the Qabalistic worlds, each of which corresponds to one of the color scales. There is no set method for doing this, and the magician is expected to use his or her own insight in coloring the sigil and character.
Incense, if used, should be Olibanum or some other fiery odor. If you wish to employ a particular magical weapon, the appropriate one would be the Wand. The substance associated with Fire is Fire Opal. The corresponding plants are Red Poppy, Hibiscus, and Nettle. An appropriate offering to the King of Fire would be incense, as it is consumed by Fire. Any form of alchohol which will evaporate into the air will also work well. It may also be burned, which would be especially appropriate for elemental Fire.
The full ritual is performed as follows:
0. The Temple
There are a number of different ways to arrange the temple for an operation such as this. What we do is place an altar in the center with the banishing dagger and invoking wand. Also on the altar is a containment structure such as the Sigillum Dei Aemeth or the Trithemian Table of Art. The diagram depicting the character and sigil should be placed within this structure. A small container of some sort for offerings may also be placed on the Table of Art.
If you employ scrying in your work, an appropriate device such as a crystal or mirror should also be placed in the containment structure. If you are using incense for such an operation, the traditional method is to place the incense burner between the scryer and the mirror or crystal. Otherwise, it may be placed anywhere in the space. Some scryers like to place a taper candle on either side of the device, and while I can't say that method does anything at all for me, a number of others report good results with it.
Elemental operations do not make use of planetary hours in any meaningful sense, as the planets and elements do not precisely correspond to each other. However, you can improve your results by employing simple electional timing. This is especially relevant to elemental operations, as the elements all share a strong affinity for the Moon.
Light incense, if used. Open the magical field using the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram and Lesser Ritual of the Hexagram, Star Ruby and Star Sapphire, or the Field Ritual. The usual field for practical work is the operant field, with banishing pentagrams and invoking hexagrams.
2. Preliminary Invocation
Raise energy using the Middle Pillar, Elevenfold Seal (the "First Gesture" from Liber V vel Reguli), or some other appropriate ritual method as you may know how to do.
Make the Sign of Apophis and Typhon, raising both arms and holding them straight with an angle between them of 60 degrees, and proclaim, very strongly:
Thee I invoke, who art Universe!
Thee I invoke, who art in Nature formed!
Thee I invoke, the vast and the mighty!
Source of Darkness, Source of Light.
Then make the Sign of Silence, by standing straight with one arm at your side and placing your thumb or forefinger to your lips.
3. Tuning the Space
Perform the Greater Invoking Ritual of the Pentagram for Fire. To each quarter in turn, beginning in the east and turning clockwise, perform the following actions:
- Trace the Invoking Pentagram of Active Spirit in bright purple while vibrating AHIH (Eheieh).
- Make the Sign of Rending the Veil, as if parting a heavy curtain in front of you with both hands.
- Trace the Invoking Pentagram of Fire in red while vibrating ELOHIM.
- Make the Sign of Fire, forming an upright triangle with both hands and placing it at your forehead, palms facing outwards.
Immortal, Eternal, Ineffable and Uncreated Father of All, borne upon the Chariot of Worlds, which ever roll in ceaseless motion; Ruler over the Ethereal Vastness, where the Throne of Thy Power is upraised, from the summit of which Thine eyes behold all, and Thy pure and Holy ears hear all, hear Thou Thy children, whom thou hast loved since before the Ages began. Thy Majesty Golden, Vast and Eternal, shineth above the Heaven of Stars! Above them art Thou exalted, O Thou Flashing Fire! There Thou illuminateth all things with Thine insupportable Glory, whence flow the ceaseless streams of splendor which nourish Thine Infinite Spirit. This Infinite Spirit nourisheth all, and maketh that inexhaustible treasure of generation which ever encompasseth Thee, replete with the numberless forms wherewith Thou hast filled it from the beginning. From this Spirit arise those most Holy Kings, who surround thy Throne and who compose Thy court.
O Universal Father! One and Alone! Father alike of Immortals and of Mortals! Thou hast created Powers marvellously like unto Thy thought Eternal and unto Thy venerable Essence. Thou hast established them above the Angels who announce Thy Will to the World. Lastly, thou hast created us third in rank within our Elemental Empire! There our continual exercise is to praise and to adore Thy desires! There we ceaselessly burn with Eternal Aspiration unto Thee! O Father! O Mother of Mothers, O Archetype Eternal of Maternity and of Love! O Son, the flower of all Sons! O form of all forms, Soul, Spirit, Harmony and Numeral of all Things! AMEN.
The space should now be tuned for the conjuration.
4. The Conjuration
O thou mighty King DJIN, ruler of ASH, by the name of the True and Living God ELOHIM, I call upon you and ask that you along with the elemental spirits of your domain manifest themselves unto me, for I am a true worshiper of the highest. Let them come forth in a friendly and peaceful manner that I may partake of the wisdom and the pure essence of Fire, and that they may attend to my behest. AMEN.
At this point, vibrate the name DJIN repeatedly until the presence of the King and the spirits of elemental Fire is perceived within the Table of Art. Various methods may be used to accomplish this, from simply waiting until a presence makes itself known to scrying for an image in a crystal or dark mirror. If this is being performed as a group ritual, with everyone chanting the name together, it is helpful for the officiant or scryer to have a bell chime that can be rung once he or she perceives a presence in whatever manner. At the bell chime, the chant stops.
5. The Charge
My instructions for the charge are simple and straightforward, just as you can find in my published books. Make use of an Injunction, which is what you want the King and/or spirits of the element to do, and a Limitation, which is what you do not want them to do. The Limitation helps you avoid "Monkey's Paw" situations in which your Injunction may manifest, but in an undesirable way.
As I mentioned above, Liber 777 catalogues the powers attributed to the element of Fire as Evocation and Pyromancy. For best results, your charge should fall within those areas. Otherwise, you may be asking for something outside the Fiery sphere of influence, and that could cause the ritual to fail.
At this point you may also make offerings to the King by placing them in the small container. After the King has had a chance to partake of the offerings, be sure to dispose of them. Alcohol such as wine may be allowed to evaporate on its own, and natural substances may be scattered outdoors. Do not attempt to reuse an offering - generally speaking, spirits do not take kindly to that.
Also, You should get some sort of assent from the King before you proceed to the License to Depart, or an explanation of his objection. When the charge lies outside the King's sphere of influence, often he will be willing to direct you to another spirit that would be more suitable to conjure in order to better accomplish your intent.
6. The License to Depart
King DJIN and the elemental spirits of Thy domain, because thou hast-diligently answered unto my demands, and hast been very ready and willing to come at my call, I do hereby license thee to depart unto thy proper place, without causing harm or danger unto man or beast. I charge thee to withdraw peaceably and quietly with the blessings of the great god ELOHIM, and that peace be ever continued between us. So mote it be!
The ritual may be closed with either a final banishing pentagram ritual or with the Qabalistic Cross performed on its own. These should match the rituals used in the opening, so for example if you opened with a Star Ruby you should repeat it or perform the corresponding version of the Qabalistic Cross.
Generally speaking, if you want to release your intent out into the world to accomplish some task external to yourself, you should close with a banishing pentagram ritual. This is similar to the chaos magick idea of releasing a sigil once it has been created and empowered.
On the other hand, if you also want the effect of the ritual to linger within your sphere of awareness, whether or not the intent is also external, you should close with the Qabalistic Cross. This stabilizes the operation, but does not detach it from your sphere of awareness.