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How to cast a Circle

October 4, 2018

 

Because it's October and because magic is all around us especially this month (Samhain /Halloween round the corner!!), I wanted to share a quick run-down on circle-casting, why to do it and how I do it. There are LOADS of different ways of casting a circle but finding the way that works best for you is half of the fun!

 

What is a Circle?

 

Although called a ‘circle’ the space we actually create is a sphere as it also goes above and below us. We cast a circle before we do any kind of magickal working because we need to create a safe and sacred space especially for purpose. We take it down again when we are finished working so that we aren't leaving a stagnant pocket of space.

 

There are many ways in which this can be done, but the simplest way that many Pagans and Witches use is to call in all the elements of Earth, Air, Fire and Water, with the fifth element of Ether being us.

 

Many also call in deities to assist and protect them whilst they work, but this is not strictly necessary. You could also call in guides and angels if you wish.

 

Get Started

 

The easiest way to cast a circle is to set a small dish of something representing each element around you at each point of the compass. You can turn and face each element/direction, starting with the North (some start in the East), and call in the element of Earth (Air of you started in the East).

 

Things to represent each element could be:

 

East - Air

A Feather

Incense

Flowers for their scent

A clear or white crystal

A bell or other small musical instrument

 

South - Fire

A candle

A golden or red crystal

A picture of the sun or a volcano

A piece of coal

A small statue of a dragon

 

West - Water

A dish of water

A seashell

A picture of a mermaid

A river pebble

Something blue

 

North - Earth

A dish of soil

A dark crystal

A leaf or a piece of tree bark

A picture of a mountain

A picture of a cave

 

Directions

 

I like to work deosil (sunwise) to cast a circle and widdershins (anti-clockwise) to take down a circle.

 

To actually call in an element, you just need to ask that the element be present with you (state your intent) and also feel the element with you. At first, this is another reason why it is helpful to have a small representation of that element with you so that you can tangibly touch something of that element to know that it has been called in. Later on, you won’t need to have anything physical to help you.

 

The words you use don’t need to be especially fancy, but you can make it a detailed and formal as you like, or informal, still showing respect and gratitude. Don’t summon or command!

 

Similarly, when taking down the circle, do not banish the elements, simply ask them to step back or thank them for their presence then visualise/know that they are going or stepping back.

 

Drawing the Boundary

 

You may use a wand or crystal point or your finger to trace an outline of the edge of the space after you have called in all the elements. I see in my minds eye that there is a boundary of light.

 

Some people recommend using a long length of white or silver cord, or even I've read in the past of people marking out their boundary by pouring salt! Obviously that's a bit messy and wasteful of the salt but if it calls to you to do this then go for it!

 

Once you feel everyone and everything is in place, you are ready to being working either a spell, a meditation, a ritual, etc.

 

What to say

 

Here are the words that I use to both put up and take down a circle, feel free to use mine or adapt them to suit your voice. The main thing is that you say it with love and respect.

 

I have also written in the parts for if you are working with others. Obviously if you are working alone you don't need to repeat the last lines back to yourself.

 

Guardians of the North and of the Earth,

We ask that you be present in our circle this evening.

The deep nurturing soil, and the strong mountains ,

The caves, the hills and the standing stones.

Be with us this night!

Hail and Welcome!

(ALL: Hail and Welcome!)

 

We thank the Guardians of the North and of the Earth

For being present in our circle this evening. 

Thank you for your guidance, wisdom, love and protection.

Stay in our hearts.

Blessed be!

(ALL: Blessed be!)

 

 

 

Guardians of the East and of Air,

We ask that you be present in our circle this evening.

The gentle Autumn breeze, the whispers in the trees,

The storms, and the softly spoken words of friends

Be with us this night!

Hail and Welcome!

(ALL: Hail and Welcome!)

 

We thank the Guardians of the East and of Air

For being present in our circle this evening. 

Thank you for your guidance, wisdom, love and protection

Stay in our hearts.

Blessed be!

(ALL: Blessed be!)

 

 

 

Guardians of the South and of Fire,

We ask that you be present in our circle this evening

The dancing candle flame, the campfire where we gather

The volcano, the shining sun

Be with us this night!

Hail and Welcome!

(ALL: Hail and Welcome!)

 

We thank the Guardians of the South and of Fire

For being present in our circle this evening. 

We give thanks for your guidance, wisdom, love and protection

Stay in our hearts.

Blessed be!

(ALL: Blessed be!)

 

 

Guardians of the West and of Water,

We ask that you be present in our circle this evening

The crashing waves, the rivers, the rain

Frost, snow and ice,

Be with us this night.

Hail and Welcome!

(ALL: Hail and Welcome!)

 

 

We thank the Guardians of the West and of Water

For being present in our circle this evening. 

We give thanks for your guidance, wisdom, love and protection

Stay in our hearts.

Blessed be!

(ALL: Blessed be!)

 

 

 

We ask that the Lord be present in our circle this evening

Lord of the Wild Hunt, He who is Father to the Ancient Forests,

and King of the Beasts

Be with us this night

Hail and Welcome!

(ALL: Hail and Welcome!)

 

 

We thank the Lord for being present in our circle this evening

We give thanks for your strength, teachings, love  and protection

Stay in our hearts.

Blessed be!

(ALL: Blessed be!)

 

 

We ask that the Lady be present in our circle this evening

She who held us in Her Womb, She who nourishes us, Loves us

And shows us the Ancient Ways

Be with us this night

Hail and Welcome!

(ALL: Hail and Welcome!)

 

We thank the Lady for being present in our circle this evening

We give thanks for your courage, teachings, love and protection

Stay in our hearts.

Blessed be!

(ALL: Blessed be!)

 

 

The circle is cast! (ALL: The circle is cast!)

 

The circle is open yet unbroken. Blessed Be! (ALL: Blessed be!)

 

I hope you enjoy casting circles in your work, I've found it to be very useful in helping me step out of 'everyday me' and into 'Magickal Me'. As always, let me know if you have any questions!

 

Happy Circle Casting!

 

Love Leonie xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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