Offerings

Offerings
Offerings: picture by David O.

Offerings

Why do we give offerings and what are they?

Offerings are small gifts we present to the Gods. They can be many things from candles to wine. You can even offer up your time to a good cause for a deity. I used to volunteer at an animal shelter, for example. More often I offer candles and incense up as offerings. I take a candle and hold it up and say something like: “Here is a candle, please take this offering as thanks for ______”.

Then I light the candle and place it on my alter to burn down completely. Never extinguish a candle once you have lit it for an offering to the Gods. This is considered taking back the gift and is insulting to the deity. Always let it burn down completely down and out on a safe heat proof surface.

You can also do this process with incense and other herbs. Burn incense and or herbs to the Deity you want to honor. Besides burning candles, incense and herbs you can pour a libation (a liquid offering) out onto the earth. You can use anything: wine, juice and blessed water.

Why do we present offerings to the Gods? We say thank you for the Gods help on things we have asked for. After a spell is successful, we will make an offering to say thank you for their help.

Some Popular Offerings:

  • candles
  • incense
  • wine
  • herbs
  • seeds
  • ground corn
  • hand made objects
  • fruit
  • milk
  • bread (cakes)
  • time (volunteering at an organization)
  • crystals
  • coins
  • donations of clothes or other things to a shelter (animal or human)

So say thank you to the Gods.

They help us every day.

Blessings,

Moonwater SilverClaw

How to Cast a Circle

Casting Circle
Casting Circle

How to Cast a Circle

Casting a circle involves several steps. The following lays this out for you in detail. Please see the post on Alter Setup for the placement of the tools on your altar, also see what is a magick circle if you are wondering why you need to do this in the first place.

Setup

Before you begin, you will need:

1)            A table for the altar.

2)            Candles and candle holders for the four directions in the colors that represent each (red for south, blue for west, green for north, yellow for east.)

3)            A red candle for the god and a green candle for the goddess. These candle colors are preferable but not mandatory. You may also use white candles if that is all you have.

4)            A working candle to represent the element Fire.

5)            A cup or chalice.

6)            An athame.

7)            A sword. If you don’t have one, use the athame to cast the circle.

8)            Incense and incense burner.

9)            A dish of salt, preferably sea salt.

10)        A bowl of water.

11)        A bell or chime.

12)        An altar cloth to keep wax and the other things off the table.

13)        Wine or juice and some sort of cake.

14)        A lighter.

Next, locate the four directions. Place the quarter candles in their respective corners: green in the northern-most corner, yellow in the east, red in the south, and blue in the west. Below is a simple graphic to show you where to place the quarter candles.

Circle Setup Graphic
Circle Setup Graphic

The Script

Before you begin, ground and center. This will help to clean out and balance your energy. This step is important to help you get into the right frame of mind before you start.

Next, you need a script to cast a circle or temple for conducting harmonious rites. Don’t worry if the rites you perform don’t flow easily at first. You just need practice. Consider writing a script yourself to follow. This may make it less confusing for you.

The following is an example of a script you can use. The parts you say out loud are in bold. This makes it easier to be seen by candlelight.

Note: This script is written for someone who is casting alone.

  1. Knock three times on the altar. Ring the bell three times.
  1. Light the working candle with the lighter.
  1. Light the charcoal if you are using it from the working candle.
  1. Take your athame and place its tip into the flame of the working candle. Say:

I exorcise you o creature of fire. And I consecrate and bless you in the names of the Goddess and the God that you are pure and clean.

5)      Trace a pentacle over the flame. Pick up the candle and raise it up above you and imagine your energy and the gods’ energy filling the flame. Place the candle back on the altar.

6)      Take your athame and place its tip into the bowl of water. Say:

I exorcise you, o creature of water. And I consecrate and bless you in the names of the Goddess and the God that you are pure and clean.

7)      Trace a pentacle in the water. Pick up the bowl of water and raise it up above you and imagine your energy and the gods’ energy filling the water. Place the bowl back on the altar.

8)      Take your athame and place its tip into the salt. Say:

I exorcise you, o creature of salt. And I consecrate and bless you in the names of the Goddess and the God that you are pure and clean.

9)      Trace a pentacle in the salt. Pick up the bowl of salt and raise it up above you and imagine your energy and the gods’ energy filling the salt. Place the salt bowl back on the altar.

10)    Take your athame and place its tip into the incense. Say:

I exorcise you, o creature of Air. And I consecrate and bless you in the names of the Goddess and the God that you are pure and clean.

11)    Trace a pentacle over incense. Pick up the incense and raise it up above you and imagine your energy and the gods’ energy filling the incense. Place the incense on the lit charcoal.

12)    Take your athame and scoop up three blades of the salt. You may also use your finger. Put the three pinches of salt into the water and mix it with the blade of your athame to make holy water. Pick up the bowl of holy water and raise it up above you and imagine your energy and the gods’ the energy filling it.

13)    Take the holy water (the salt and water mixture) and dip your fingers into it. Dab some of it on your wrists and forehead. Say:

I bless myself with Earth and Water.

 14)    Take the censer filled with the burning incense and wave the smoke over you. Say:

I bless myself with Air and Fire.

 15)    Take the holy water (salt water mixture) and use your fingers to asperge (sprinkle with the holy water) the circle. Starting with north and moving clockwise, walk a complete circle around the parameter, asperging each corner as you go. When finished, place the bowl back on the altar.

16)    Pick up the censer filled with the burning incense. Use your hand to wave the incense smoke around the circle. Starting with north and moving clockwise, walk a complete circle around the parameter, waving the smoke as you go. Be careful not to burn yourself or anything else. When finished, place the censer back on the altar.

(You have just cleansed the space and yourself. Now let’s continue by casting the circle.)

17)    Take the sword/athame. Envision energy being channeled from you up from the earth or down from the sky and coming out the tip of your sword/athame. Starting with north and moving clockwise, walk a complete circle around the parameter. As you walk, say:

I conjure you, o circle of power, that you be a boundary between the seen mundane world and the spirit world. That you protect me and contain the magick that I shall raise within you! I consecrate and bless you in the names of the Goddess and the God. So mote it be!

18)    Finish at the east quarter and trace a pentacle in the air with sword/athame.

(Now it’s time to call the quarters.)

19)    Take the athame and the taper from the altar. Light the taper from the working candle. Go and stand in the east corner of where your circle boundary is. Starting with the east candle, say:

I summon, stir, and call you up, o mighty ones of the East, element of Air. Come guard my circle and witness my rite.

20)    Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame. Then light the quarter candle for east. Say:

Hail and welcome!

 21)    Move clockwise to the south candle. Say:

I summon, stir, and call you up, o mighty ones of the South, element of Fire. Come guard my circle and witness my rite.

22)    Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame. Then light the quarter candle for south. Say:

Hail and welcome!

23)    Move clockwise to the west candle. Say:

I summon, stir, and call you up, o mighty ones of the West, element of Water. Come guard my circle and witness my rite.

24)    Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame. Then light the quarter candle for west. Say:

Hail and welcome!

25)    Move clockwise to the north candle. Say:

I summon, stir, and call you up, o mighty ones of the North, element of Earth. Come guard my circle and witness my rite.

26)    Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame. Then light the quarter candle for north. Say:

Hail and welcome!

27)    Using the taper, light the goddess candle, saying:

Welcome, my lady!

28)    Using the taper, light the god candle, saying:

Welcome, my lord!

You have now completed casting your circle!

(At this time you can do any working you need or communicate with the gods through meditation.)

You would then do the cakes and wine ceremony at the conclusion of your work.

To close your circle:

1)      Take your athame and hold it up and stand facing the east. Say:

Hail mighty ones of the East, the element of Air. I thank you for guarding my circle and witnessing my rite. May you depart to your fair and lovely realms. I bid you hail and farewell!

2)      Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame.

3)      Continuing, moving in a clockwise circle, stand facing the south. Say:

Hail mighty ones of the South, the element of Fire. I thank you for guarding my circle and witnessing my rite. May you depart to your fair and lovely realms. I bid you hail and farewell!

 4)      Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame.

5)      Moving clockwise around the circle, stand facing west. Say:

Hail mighty ones of the West, the element of Water. I thank you for guarding my circle and witnessing my rite. May you depart to your fair and lovely realms. I bid you hail and farewell!

6)      Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame.

7)      Moving clockwise around the circle, stand facing north. Say:

Hail mighty ones of the North, the element of Earth. I thank you for guarding my circle and witnessing my rite. May you depart to your fair and lovely realms. I bid you hail and farewell!

 8)      Trace a pentacle in the air with your athame.

9)      Return again to face east. While walking the boundary of the circle using the sword/athame, say:

Fire seal the circle round,

Let it fade beneath the ground,

Let all things be as they once were before.

The circle is now no more,

Merry meet, merry part,

And merry meet again!

So mote it be!

Generally, that is how to cast and close a circle. However each coven or practitioner may have slightly different variations on wording, but the process remains the same.

The Element Water

The Element Water
The Element Water

Water

Water corresponds the direction West. Like Earth, water is a feminine element. The Earth’s oceans represent the womb of all life on the planet we call mother. Wiccans look upon sea water as a representative of the goddess’ womb.

A mother’s womb holds a sacred water that is saline similar to the salinity found in sea water. So Wiccans apply sea salt to water to create their holy water.

The Undine is the elemental of water. The Undine can manifest in many forms, from mermaids to sirens of the sea.

Wiccans use various things to represent water including sea shells, sea weed, water, sponges, and fish.

Blessed be,

Moonwater SilverClaw