A Thought on How Magick Circles Work   Leave a comment

Magick Circle as described in the Grimorium Verum – hand-painted by Carrie Leitch

Over the years, I have found it somewhat difficult to explain to students the “mechanics” of how protective Magick Circles actually work.  Thanks to popular fiction, and even descriptive terms in the grimoires (such as calling a Magick Circle a “fortress”), we tend to imagine the Circle as some kind of astral barrier through which hostile spirits cannot penetrate.

Now, this post isn’t a complete overview of Magic Circles – but I will briefly explain these figures aren’t really “fortresses” that manifest around you in the spirit world.  No, these mandalas (yes, that’s where where they came from and that’s what they are) with their closed and repeating geometrical figures operate more like “spirit traps” than “buttresses.”  Spirit traps – from spirit-bottles filled with broken mirror shards, to sprinkling seeds or sand across your window-sill – work by confusing and/or enthralling the trespassing spirit.  These spirits do not have bodies and cannot be blocked by walls – nor by simple figures drawn on the ground.  But they CAN be easily misdirected and confused.  A circle (just by itself) could be enough to confuse a spirit who is trying to get across it to you.

And therein lies the rub.  If the figures on the ground are not a barrier, then how does it divert or confuse the spirit?  It would be like drawing a labyrinth on the ground – no walls – and expecting someone to be unable to find the center.

Today, I had an inspiration!  A better way to explain exactly how this works from the spirit’s point of view.  In order to understand how this works, we have to think of the astral/spiritual plane not as similar to the material world – but instead as similar to the aquatic world!  (Not a leap at all, considering the astral plane has been related to Elemental Water for quite some time…)

Now imagine you want to work within this flowing river we call the astral plane.  But you need to protect your working area from – let us say – piranha.  To do this, we’ll imagine you possess a device that can create a whirlpool of water around you – leaving you dry and safe on the inside, and all the water swirling around you in a strong current.  That water is not a wall.  Another person could easily dive through that wall to either join you in the circle, or to escape from it.  But the piranha?  We’ll leave aside the real-world fact that one or two could conceivably work their way through the whirlpool and end up flopping around at your feet before dying – as this is just a thought experiment and spirits aren’t fish.  LOL  Instead, we’ll focus on the ones who can’t figure out why each time they try to swim near you, they suddenly get swept around and away from you.

We could easily move this same analogy onto land – switching out the fish for flies, and the swirling water for one of those air-blast units stores and warehouses install to keep the insects out.  Again – you and I can easily step through, while the flies are utterly unable to fly through the downward current of air.

I could go on – but I’ll summarize all of this in the following way:  Magick Circles are more about currents than they are about barriers.

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Posted September 8, 2022 by kheph777 in grimoires, magick, solomonic

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