The following text was an addendum to some Wiccan friends of mine
written in 1986. It followed a fairly standard instruction in the
Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram, with which they were not
familiar. We were feeling out some linking techniques leading to a
proposed joint ritual involving several Wiccans and two ceremonial
qabalists (one Thelemite - ie. myself, and another). While events
conspired to torpedo this project, some interesting ideas came along
on both sides. The goal was a set of brief rituals meaningful to both
traditions which we could practice individually, thus building up a
group current prior to the date of the proposed rite (Samhain of that
year). Herewith my notes on "The Wiccan Pentagram" ritual which
evolved during this project. My primary source of God Forms was Paul
Huson's MASTERING WITCHCRAFT which was my main source of information on
Wicca at the time (I've done considerable study elsewhere since).
A ritual can be modified in many ways, to refit it for a different set
of symbols, for example. I have taken the liberty of doing some
research into alternate symbols for the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram
since I know that you work a lunar-feminine current (Wicca) whereas I
use more solar-masculine symbols in my current (Thelemite). The
Qabalistic Cross This might be used as is, though you could use the
English if you don't feel that the Hebrew is relevant. I am sure you
recognize the words as being similar to the end of the Lord's Prayer
in the King James Version: 'Unto thee, the Kingdom and the Power and
the Glory, forever! Amen.' I would point out that this formula was
around a long time before Christ, much less the translators of the
Standard Revised Version of the Bible. If you dislike such a
specifically Christian form, it may be replaced with the words KETHER
(KEH-THER), MALKUTH, GEBURAH, GEDULAH (or Crown, Kingdom, Power,
Mercy), the spheres of occult energy that you are invoking with the
Q-Cross. The mental images remain the same. You could even avoid these
Hebrew symbols entirely, using Names and formulae more suitable to
raising the cone of power, which is what you are doing here in Wiccan
terms. See the 'Wiccan Cross,' below.
The principle is:
1) Invoke strongly the presence of the Supreme Creative
Principle as you conceive it (or in your case, Her) to be. Your Name
for the Goddess as Creatrix would be most suitable.
2) Draw down power from this Godhead and project it through your
body into the Earth. Invoke strongly the Supreme symbol of Creation
in your Tradition: maybe the God - as Son of the Goddess and Lord of
the Trees, and as John Barleycorn, the ever- born and dying One.
3) Establish on your right side the Active Principle - Yang - the
Projective Energy of the Universe. A God image, I should think.
4) Establish on your left side the Passive Principle - Yin - the
Receiving Energy of the Universe. A Goddess force I feel.
5) Strongly visualize yourself at the center of these axes
between the Infinities. This centers you at the middle of the Sacred
Space to be created - the still point at the center of the universe.
Again, the pentagram should be used. This symbol is universal to
many, many systems of magick, including Wicca, as you know. The
five-pointed star has supreme power over the Elements: Spirit, Fire,
Water, Air, and Earth. It drives off negative influences and attracts
positive ones. It is an essential part of the rite and there is no
symbol that can take its place as effectively.
I prefer using the Hebrew God-Names as is. In this connection
they express formulae that govern the Elements and are no more
religious than E=MC squared. However, there are equivalent Wiccan
God-Names, which I describe in the next section, as substitutes for
the Archangels. The use of the same Names to activate the stars and
to invoke the Elemental force is quite in keeping with the Wiccan
tradition, which does not use the same hierarchical system of
God-Name, Archangel, Angel, Ruler, Spirit, etc. that Qabalism does.
The Archangelic Invocation
Instead of the Hebrew Archangels I described, you could use
Wiccan Deities to invoke the 'pure' form of the Elements.
AIR-EAST: The Air image in Wicca seems to be masculine and
relates to Herne, the Black Man, the messenger of the Gods, or the Sky
Gods: Odin, or Lug as the rising Sun God. The God can be imagined as
riding through the night sky, at the head of the Wild Hunt, or rising
above the branches of the world-ash. Instead of the Sword given to
Raphael, the God might carry a staff, or spear, or wand, which is
attributed to Air in most Wiccan traditions.
FIRE-SOUTH: The Fire image is definitely masculine and relates
to the Horned God: Cernunnos, Lucifer, call Him what you will. He
stands in the hot light of the noonday sun, radiating fiery energy.
He would bear an Arthame or sword, which is the weapon of Fire in most
WATER-WEST: The Water image is the Maiden, the mistress of the
Moon and the Tides: Aradia, Artemis, Venus rising from the waves.
Her image is lit by the silver light of the moon, upon a tranquil
reach of water or the foaming sea. She might hold the chalice, symbol
of water (alternatively, the cauldron might be envisioned).
EARTH-NORTH: The Goddess in Her aspect as Earth Mother is here:
Hertha, Habondia, Demeter. She stands beneath the golden, life-giving
sun surrounded by the fruits of the Earth. Before her, a platter
flows with good things of the Earth, for the disk/shield/platter is
the pentacle, magick instrument of Earth. These are only bare
sketches of the magickal images that a witch might use to replace the
Qabalistic images of the traditional pentagram ritual. I offer them
for what they are worth.
A few points to note:
1) the phases of the sun used in the Archangelic images
(East:Dawn; South:Noon; West:Sunset; North:Midnight) are not the same,
nor are they as important to Wicca. Instead, the poles of day and
night are established: Night for the East-West axis and Day for the
2) the male-female poles are established with the masculine
images (Herne and Cernunnos) attributed to the active Elements (Air
and Fire) and the feminine images (Aradia and Habondia) to the passive
Elements (Water and Earth). Note that one figure of each gender
stands in light, and one in darkness. This male-
female/positive-negative/active-passive polarity is central to
virtually all systems of magick, eg. the yin/yang symbol in oriental
systems. I may be betraying solar-phallic tendencies by these
assignments, and you may want to use different attributions: The
Maiden can be Air and the Mother switch to Water, with the Hunter
moving into Earth, for example. Heck, the dual God Forms should
perhaps be invoked in each quarter. eg. Venus/Adonis imagery in East
or South, Hertha/Herne in West, etc.
The Star Of David
The last line of the Invocation refers to a 'six-rayed star' and
the mental work calls for imagining a Star of David. This is not a
specifically Jewish symbol in this context. The six-pointed star, or
hexagram, is the Qabalistic symbol par excellence of initiation and
spiritual illumination. The upward-pointing triangle represents the
aspiration of the magician to the Gods, and the downward-pointing
triangle represents the divine power, flowing down to the world.
These meet at the moment of magick and the interlaced triangles
forming the hexagram symbolize the power of this meeting. Should you
prefer not to use the Star of David, you can replace the mental image
with any symbol showing the meeting of your soul and the power of the
Goddess. This can even be a private symbol, one that is meaningful
only to you. Alternatively, you can just envision the sphere of white
light from the Q-Cross, as a symbol of divine power. Replace the
words about the 'six-rayed star' with some descriptive form: 'the seal
of the Goddess,' or 'the sign of my Awakening,' or simply 'the light
WICCAN PENTAGRAM RITUAL
Rubric [This is a form of the rite incorporating the changes in
symbolism discussed above]
WICCAN CROSS Face East. Touch forehead. Say IO EVOE HERTHA
('Blessed be Hertha,' or other Name by which you worship the Goddess
as Creatrix) Touch solar plexus or genitals. Say IO EVOE CERNUNNOS
('Blessed be Cernunnos,' or other name by which you worship the Horned
God as the Earth) Touch right shoulder. Say EKO EKO AZARAK ('Hail,
hail force of fire') Touch left shoulder. Say EKO EKO AMELAK ('Hail,
hail to the glory') Extend arms in form of a cross. Say IO EVOE
('Blessed be.') Clasp hands upon breast and say 'So mote it be.'
CIRCLE OF PROTECTION Trace pentagram in East. Say HERNE. Trace
circle of protection until facing South. Trace pentagram in South. Say
CERNUNNOS. Trace circle of protection until facing West. Trace
pentagram in West. Say ARADIA. Trace circle of protection until facing
North. Trace pentagram in North. Say HABONDIA. Finish tracing circle,
closing it in the East.
INVOCATION OF THE GREAT GODS Return to center of circle and face
East. Extend arms in form of a cross. Chant:
Before me HERNE The Huntsman
Behind me ARADIA The Maiden
On my right hand CERNUNNOS, the Horned God
On my left hand HABONDIA, the Great Mother
About me flame the pentagrams
And above me shines the light of the Goddess.
Repeat the Wiccan Cross. Rather than performing this in the rather
measured cadences of Qabalistic Ritual, a form of dancing and chanting
more pleasing to the God-forms of Wicca might profitably be devised.