Three days left of this Domagick challenge. This one has been a mixed bag for me. For one, I didn’t blog on the weekends. I needed the time off, which means I broke the official rules. Besides that, I didn’t complete the divination prompts that I originally to use throughout the month. They simply stopped inspiring me about half way through. Divination remains a cornerstone of my practice, of course, though I continue to rove from deck to deck like a wandering oracle.
Secondly, I stopped focusing on specific chakras part way through this Domagick challenge, and choose to instead focus on my overall energy “flow” each day. Did I have blockages? This is a highly subjective, of course. Regardless, attempting to cleanse my chakras through both visualization, sound, and movement made me feel better. When I wanted to take a mid-afternoon nap, I often turned to that practice instead, and it perked me back up.
I have found chanting the warrior syllables and putting my body through the positions I call the Salutations to Ptah the most helpful in this regard. I’ll keep using those as part of my regular psychic hygiene. Alternating those with my other cleansing techniques with stop me from getting bored. I like to keep things interesting
Today I fell back on my experience as shamanic practitioner and burnt white sage to cleanse myself and my office. In my mind, the smoke only does part of the work, and I called on both prayer and visualization to cleanse me today as well. I will return to the routine of the Domagick challenge tomorrow.
Tomorrow many Daemonolaters will celebrate the equinox rite of Leviathan, which is traditional held on September 21st of each year. I plan to hold my ritual on the 22nd, when the actual equinox falls in my city. This rite symbolizes the changing of the daemonic elements. This is the time of water, highly apt since I am working with an ancestor who used to find wells with divining rods in addition to the Nine.
The Rite of Leviathan also symbolizes the turning of the Wheel of the Year. Although autumn supposedly starts tomorrow, it is already rained here for several days. I’ve given up ice cold diet colas for warm drinks.
If you’re similarly inclined, here’s a way of sharing water in the form of tea with your ancestors.
Create some sort of space to drink tea with your ancestors.
Brew yourself a large cup of your favorite type.
When the tea is the right temperature to drink, pick it up with your left hand and inhale it scent. Truly try to savor it, for you were smelling it for both yourself and your ancestors.
Transfer the cup to your right hand.
Dip the ring finger of your left hand (the one tied directly to your heart) into the tea. Flick your wet finger three times into the air, once for each of the three levels of the Otherworld. Our ancestors and all their wisdom are said to reside in the Lowerworld.
Dip your ring finger into the tea again. Anoint your third eye, your mouth, and your heart.
Drink half of the tea and leave the remainder in a place you have set up for your ancestors. Let them drink from the energy of the tea as it cools.
If you have pets who may knock over the tea, you can dispose of the tea as soon as it has cooled completely, either by drinking it yourself or returning it outside. Otherwise, let the tea sit on your altar for 24 hours before being respectfully returned to earth.
(If you read cards often you may know what I mean by the following statement: today I fell down the reading rabbit hole. What I saw worried me, so one question quickly led to another. Soon I’d read five different spreads about work and finances. I’d even made a phone call to put my concerns to rest! The candles on my altars had burnt low by the time I’d gotten to the heart of the matter. I packed my cards away feeling better, but even so I’m keeping today’s work for this Domagick challenge to myself.)
I’m cheating a little when it comes to the September Domagick challenge. Not on purpose, mind you. Andrieh also encouraged us to embrace the beginner’s mindset and adopt a new hobby. I got a jump on that when I learned how to put together the e-book and print versions of Daemonic Shamanism.
The process was much more difficult than I’d expected. I had thought my other computer skills would somehow give me an edge, but I felt like an utter notice instead. I’m still worrying I did something wrong!
Even so, I’m itching to play with those tools again. The last couple challenges have proved I love design, and this is a whole new realm for me to play in if nothing else. I should understand the online software far better by the time I complete my next manuscript.
What that book will be about, I don’t know. I’m plodding back and forth between a few projects right now, with all of them in their infancy. None of them feels like the “one” yet, but that’s okay. For now, I’m satisfied with my work, albeit slow-going. On the other hand, I was asked recently why I hadn’t put together a different drumming pattern for each of the daemons mentioned in Daemonic Shamanism. I suppose I could record something like that as a follow-up if enough people were interested. Those rhythms would be classified as spirit songs, however.
Spirit songs can contain lyrics or be entirely instrumental. These songs act as conversations between the singer and the intended spirit, like a prayer. They can be used as invocations, praise, or requests. If sung with full intent and directed energy, spirit songs can also be used as offerings and the focus of an entire rite.
Unfortunately, opening up like this can be difficult for many people in group settings like drumming circles. It is for that reason that I feel it is easiest to come up with new spirit songs in private. Besides which, my spirit song for Lucifer may not work for others. When I invoke him with song, I envision a canary I had a child and try to mimic its tweets. My whistling would likely disappoint those wanting a 4/4 beat!
To Create a Daemonic Spirit Song
Begin by constructing a balanced elemental circle. If you are planning on journeying afterwards, makes sure to take the additional directions discussed in Daemonic Shamanism into account. When you’re done, sit in the center with your back straight but not rigid. Take a few deep breaths to still your mind.
Slowly chant or sing an enn of your choosing over and over under your breath. Set a beat by clapping your hands. (You can play a drum or rattle if you have them.)
You may feel the urge to speed the enn up or get louder. Go with it. Go with your fumbles too. It’s okay to screw up. Just give the spirit song all you have, concentrating on whatever you want to tell the spirit. When you feel the conversation coming to an end, change rhythm sharply to signal this. If you’ve read Daemonic Shamanism, use your personal callback. Either way, bring the song to a close.
If you have more work you wish to do, continue your rite. If not, thank the spirit for their presence and open your circle. Make sure to ground yourself when you are done.
The September Domagick challenge encourages us to think like a beginner again and pick up a new magical technique. I recently had to adopt this mindset when I wrote my book, Daemonic Shamanism: A Beginner’s Guide. To create the original class material, I asked myself what I wished I’d known twenty years ago when I first picked up a drum and began to practice shamanic journey-work. What tricks could have made my travels easier and safer? The lessons came quickly once I answered those questions. If interest warrants, I may write about more advanced techniques in the future.
My work next month springs from an even older interest of mine, however. I became fascinated with card reading in my early teens when my local cable access channel gave a fortune-teller her own show. I watched her avidly each Wednesday night and soon bought my first Tarot deck. I quickly realized my cards’ symbolism went far beyond the meanings in their Little White Book. This led to a passion for divination and oracles in general. In September, I’ll learn my latest: the Petit Lenormand, a thirty-six-card system.
The Lenormand differs from the Tarot in a few ways. Besides having a smaller number of cards, Lenormand decks have neither a Major nor Minor Arcana. The cards are numbered but, rather than depicting the evolution of the soul as the Major Arcana does, their numbers harken back to the Game of Hope, the German racing game from which Lenormand descended.
Lastly, the pictures on the Lenormand card possess nowhere near as much symbolism as those on the Tarot. Because the symbolism is less complex, meanings allow less room for interpretation. While Tarot can be used for deep meditation, soul searching, and communing with deity, the Petit Lenormand is best suited for direct, day-to-day fortune-telling in the most strict sense of the word.
Keep in mind that cards which share names between systems may not necessarily share meanings, either. Both the Lenormand and the Tarot have Sun, Moon, and Tower cards. Compare these Tower cards and you will see how each system’s cards remain unique.