An Essay on
© 2008 by Academic Services International, Los Lunas, NM, USA
The Instruments - Continued
The Badge of Identity
The Lamen is a Seal or Coat-of-Arms that identifies the magician and his or her aspirations. It should correspond with the design on the disk, the word of power on the dagger, the number on the cup, and the deed associated with the wand. But it should be kept simple, using ascending or descending symbols that vertically portray the individual's approach to the Great Work.
The Lamen may be made of metal, wood or fabric. It may be hung around the neck, embroidered on the robe, or made into a Seal for embedding into soft wax or imprinting onto magical stationary and/or esoteric documents.
In terms of magical anatomy and physiology, the Lamen represents the pericardium of the magician. In terms of awareness, it corresponds with the Magical Identity.
Tread Softly - and Carry a Big Wand
The Sandals are worn upon the feet. Magical Sandals are for use in ceremonial rites and should not be worn when shopping or attending social functions. The traditional design includes straps, used to secure the Sandals to the feet and ankles, that are shaped like an Ankh (Ankh means "a sandal strap"). The soles should be of leather. Rubber or plastic soles must be avoided as they "insulate" the magician from the Earth, and he or she needs to remain "grounded" at all times.
Grounded means alert, practical and firmly established.
Not grounded implies floating, wavering thoughts, and a "space cadet."
The Sandals protect the feet and are not necessarily required for indoor rites as many practitioners prefer to work barefooted. However, unless one has very well-conditioned feet, Sandals are recommended for outdoor rites.
In terms of magical anatomy and physiology, the Sandals represent the soles of the feet of the magician. In terms of awareness, they correspond with the ability to go and to remain grounded.
Three Sides to Contain a Spirit
The Triangle of Evocation is placed just outside the magical circle and is inscribed in a manner similar to that of the circle. It is designated as the place wherein a spirit (or demon) is evoked.
Some Triangles are formed with the apex pointing away from the circle, while others are aimed toward the circle.
The three corners are often inscribed with pentagrams upon which burn three small censers, lamps, candles, glow-sticks, or incense-sticks. A dense smoke cloud arising from incense is particularly suitable for providing a medium in which a spirit may appear, thus bringing it into full, physical manifestation and the sight of the magician.
After a spirit has been evoked, it is often necessary to command the demon to place his hand upon an instrument or a talisman in order to impress it with his energy, or to signify that he will comply with the terms of the "charge" (the magician's bidding or instructions). This can be somewhat dangerous as the magician is now required to extend his arm outside of the circle and into the Triangle - During this procedure, it is vitally important that the practitioner radiate energy out from his or her exposed arm. Any absorption of energy (an inflow of energy from the triangle or the spirit), may result in physical damage, emotional possession, or mental obsession.
In terms of magical anatomy and physiology, the Triangle represents the subconscious mind of the magician.
The Talisman is an object in which specific energy is stored. It can theoretically be made of almost anything, but suitable Talismans are usually composed of jewelry, small metallic disks (usually silver or gold), or paper. The traditional format is true papyrus or parchment.
Parchment is nothing more than the prepared skin of some poor animal like a sheep, goat, calf, etc. Vellum is simply the name for a fine grade of parchment. Paper-makers manufacture paper sheets that simulate parchment or papyrus.
Various symbols, sigils, or letters are written on the Talisman (or engraved if the object is metallic), and these must indicate the nature of the energy - that is, what the talismanic energy is intended to accomplish. A magical pen, preferably the old style that must be dipped into ink, is desirable and it should only be used for talismanic purposes. Traditionally, India Ink (called Indian Ink in Britain) is used for paper or parchment.
Potent Talismans are often written in the Enochian alphabet. These characters were delivered to John Dee (1527-1609) by the same angels who communicated with the biblical Enoch. Take care! Enochian magic and talismans (of any variety) are perhaps the most powerful forms of wizardry available, and they commonly display bizarre, negative side-effects.
Both the Reiki and the Sirius empowerment systems offer Level 2 training that includes the art of designing a talisman for long-distance healing and the art of manifestation. Interestingly, these simple talismans seem to work just as well as the somewhat dangerous Enochian variety, but they also appear to be free of negative side effects - this is probably due to the fact that the evocation of demons is not involved.
Sometimes, a Talisman is made, inscribed, activated, and then burned in order to "set it in motion."
In terms of magical anatomy and physiology, the Talisman represents the hands and fingers of the magician. That is, the means of performing selective, specific tasks.
The Libation is a substance that is defined as a drink, offering, sacrifice or oblation. It is also a ritual pouring of a drink as an offering to a god or a deceased person. It was common in the religions of antiquity.
A modern usage of the term has taken the form of pouring a small amount of a drink onto the ground (before the first sip is taken) in remembrance of ancestors or friends who are no longer with us. Thus, the use of the phrase: "One for me, and one for my fallen comrades."
Another interpretation is an act or instance of drinking and includes the substance which is consumed. The contemporary meaning here is getting drunk with an alcoholic beverage and the beverage itself.
Magically speaking, a Libation is a substance that frees the consciousness of the magician so that he or she can communicate with his or her god (who otherwise might be too far removed for a chat). After all, the root lib- forms the basis of words like liberty and liberation. Native American cultures refer to Libations as Power Plants.
Power Plants are naturally-occurring herbs that can (under certain circumstances) loosen and/or shift the Assemblage Point.