A personal ritual is a source of creativity and sincere power designed by the user itself. In part 1, I discussed what exactly a personal ritual entails and had a look at the linguistic, artistic and visualisation factors that one can incorporate into its design. The focus was on the creative power of the self in designing a poem, chant or prayer. The power of artistic expression and visualisation was also discussed. In this article, external and physical aspects of a personal ritual will be discussed. This includes movement, manipulation of bodily energy and the use of external physical items, such as incense, oils, candles, etc. As stated in part 1, the design of a personal ritual is up to the creativity and will of the user. Will and sincerity in the ritual remain the primary source of its power, while the linguistic, visual and physical factors only serve to reinforce the energetic power of the ritual.
The physical influences of a personal ritual provide quality reinforcement to the sincere intent of the ritual. It provides additional energetic influence in itself, but also empowers the user’s mind by stimulating the intentional will of the user. Because physical factors are direct and clear to the senses, they can be powerful additions to any ritual. If we look at ritualistic magical practices of occult, wiccan, pagan and mainstream religious groups, it is clear that physical intentional movement and certain tools are highly regarded as part of the ritual. The symbolic elements attached to movement, ritual tools, specific materials, deity statues and other physical items are commonplace in ritual since early stages of shamanism in human spiritual thought. The user’s energy is imbued into physical items, while movement manipulates energy within the user. This energy then radiates outward into the cosmos and inward within the user. It is important to remember that the user himself is a fragment of the universe, meaning that energy radiating within the user creates a specific resonance in them. This energetic resonance acts as a beacon or signal for similar resonating frequencies. Through the law of magnetism like attracts like, thus the appropriate energy is attracted to the user and the ritual itself.
Movement within a ritual is not merely symbolic but transfers energy within and without the body of the user. The movement also provides a focus for the mind of the user, where along with the intent of the ritual it is able to create a hypnotic state. In this hypnotic state, the user’s mind is more receptive and in tune with the energetic flow within the body and mind. Dance is perhaps one of the oldest forms of movement accompanying rituals. The San bushmen of Southern Africa are known for the trance-like state that they enter when dancing and chanting around a fire. They mimic animal sounds and when the trance is fully induced they collapse and ask their gods and ancestors for aid and healing. In some cases, they state that the spirits do not provide what they seek and then fight them for the right to be healed and blessed. However, I will not recommend combat if ever a user encounters spirit entities as all of them deserve respect and gratitude. This trance state entered through dance is universal as it is found in almost every culture on the planet, whether it is for a spiritual or recreational purpose. The linguistic properties of such a ritual in the form of chants or song provides additional receptivity to enter the trance state. These dances are a strong form of expression for the user and illustrates the willful intent of the user. Movement within a ritual is not limited to dance, but calculated and slow movements can also be used.
In terms of Qi-Gong, Thai-Chi and other arts pertaining to calculated movement, a more mindful manipulation of energy within the body is provided. These calculated movements are specifically designed to move and stimulate the energy pathways within the body. This energy can then be manipulated and directed in whatever way the user feels is required or intended for the ritual. By being aware of the energy flow in the body, the user can easily enhance their energetic system as a whole. This is a very reliable way for one to increase the resonance of the body, which will aid in attracting corresponding higher energies. This type of practice is excellent on its own if one wishes to simply get an energetic boost for the day. The movements associated with the energic arts is an excellent precursor to a personal ritual. Instead of doing this practice as part of the ritual itself, it can be done beforehand in order to clear energetic blockages, raise personal resonance and to clear the mind. Once this is accomplished, the other facets of the ritual can begin with a clear mind and body which increases the receptivity and conductivity of energy that the ritual is intended for.
I would also like to mention the use of an energy ball. If one is able to sense and direct energy with some efficiency, then a ball of energy can be created between the palms of one’s hands. This is done by willfully directing energy between the palms and visualising a ball of energy. This energetic ball is easily felt with some practice. A specific purpose is given to the ball such as healing, reinforcement, general positivity, improved magnetism, improved growth in the case of plants and any other purpose that you will for it. In terms of a personal ritual, this energy can be imbued into the statues, candles, paper, tools and others to improve the effectiveness of it. It can also be placed somewhere on one’s own body to stimulate specific chakras or areas that require healing. The ball can also be sent out into the cosmos or specific people and places that you wish through visualisation. Energy manipulation in this way is a very powerful tool not only for ritual purposes but also for general wellbeing and health. If one is new to spiritual thought, energetic arts such as Qigong, ReiKi and Thai Chi among many others is a great place to start. It will provide a way to create a balance between the body, mind and soul of the user which can easily be translated into other forms of esoteric training and practices.
Physical additions to a personal ritual that are not related to the user’s body, is where a lot of personal creativity comes into play. There is a diverse array of items and tools that can be used to reinforce the ritual. These include deity figures, statues and art; incense, candles, fire and torches; minerals, crystals, water, mirrors and crystal balls; plants, burning of dried plant material, ingestion of shamanic plants; geometric shapes such as a pyramid; staves, wands, robes, jewelry, animal material such as feathers, effigies and many more. With such a wide variety of possible physical items to choose from, it may be difficult to know what exactly one should use, but as I have said before, have fun with designing it for oneself. It is a personal ritual after all. Certain items and features do have specific attributes and properties that can be related to the intent of the ritual, but other items are used due to the personal meaning that the user himself attributes to it. As long as no fear, doubt or negativity is tied to the items, then they are safe and effective to use. Each item then contains within itself a symbolic nature that reinforces the purpose of the ritual in the mind of the user. Certain items are designed to have a specific meaning or influence on the cosmos and user. For example, specific incense and scented candles create a specific mood in one’s mind. By burning these items, their energetic properties are released and attract or repel certain energies. Thus some items do have an intrinsic property that it was designed for, reinforcing the ritual in specific ways.
By burning fragrant candles or incense, a subtle smell is released that slightly alters one’s mental state. The specific chemicals produced by burning these items each differ according to the different plant material used. Like food, by breathing in a certain fragrance it creates a slightly altered effect on our brain. This essentially changes our brainwave pattern to a more receptive state, similar to a meditative or hypnotic state, but to different degrees. Each brain wave state has its own frequency and unique state of experiencing reality, this is also true for its unique experience of psychic phenomenon. In the theta brain wave (4 to 5 cycles per second) humans are more inclined to astral project and remote view. Theta is attributed to deep states of consciousness. In the delta brainwave (less that 4 cycles per second) humans are in deep sleep and deep meditation. In this state, however, one is not fully aware. For a ritual theta and alpha brainwaves, states are sufficient. Alpha state (8 to 13 cycles per second), is a simple meditative, self-reflective, internally focused state. Similar to a slight calm, dreamy state. Another option is using fragrant oils, by placing an oil under the nose the inhalation and absorption through the skin will cause a unique smell. Again, each different oil induces a unique alteration in the brain. For example, lemon is used for concentration and psychic awareness; jasmine and acacia are more attributed to lucid dreaming, astral projection and clairvoyant dreams; Frankincense and Honeysuckle for psychic awareness and ability; Sandalwood and Rose for spiritual empowerment.
To conclude, altering the energetic state of body and mind is required for such a ritual. It provides the user with a state of awareness of energy on a physical and mental scale. By manipulating the energy within the body, one becomes more aware of the feeling and malleability of energy that one can physically feel. This is used to channel energy around the body to raise it energetically. It is also used to imbue energy into items and specific places. The state of mind plays a crucial role in a personal ritual. Each state has a unique resonant wave and is attributed to certain psychic and spiritual phenomenon. In the various consciousness states, energy is physically and mentally received and transmitted differently. What one uses for a ritual must be respected, it has intrinsic physical, mental and spiritual properties attributed to it. In part 3, I will discuss the use physical items such as deity figures, crystals, water and more. Some examples of personal rituals will also be illustrated.
Have a good one.