Link to previous prompts: http://ppwwmm.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/cauldroneers-bos-prompts.html
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Cauldroneers Prompts 2. Sunday 26th November 2017 - The 2nd prompt will be... Cleanse, Consecrate and Charge as well as write a Book Blessing and/or Dedication. & About me.. Signs, Elements, Correspondences, Stones etc.
Ok so Prompt 2 is going to be a 3 parter (at least) some of you may have done this/these prompts already but for you and others I hope it might inspire...
P2A: Cleansing, Consecrating & Charging - What and why:
This is usually done all that the same time, and in different ways. Some people like to cast a circle, hold a full blown ritual; only do this on certain days or night of the moon phases etc. I'm going to touch on some of this here - but if you don't know what this is or how to do it you might want to research a little more in depth and then figure out what's right for you.. But here's an outline...
Tip - Please be mindful of your item, I know in this case we are talking about your book which doesn't want to get wet, you don't want to set it on fire, ruin it with damp dirty earth, oils may stain it, the sun may bleach the cover.. and this goes for other items.. Eg. Not all crystals are good with water, sun exposure and such forth.
Why: In short you would do this is to get rid of all energies your item has picked up from people who have touched it before; lets say the maker was unwell and rushing to get it made on time and thus in a distressed mood, the shop that purchased it put it out on display for many people of all kinds of moods, energies and walks of life to touch and examine before the shop owner then sold it online as part of her failing business liquidation sale, bundled up and manhandled throughout the delivery system only for it to end up in the hands of Mr delivery man who is going through a divorce and not looking forward to an afternoon in court and finally it just arrived but you and your partner just had a huge fight and now he's holding the item! (Yes this is a little extreme but I hope you understand my point, and I know not all energies are particularly bad ones!) - All those unwanted energies.. You want rid of them as this item is to be to be yours, hold your energies (or perhaps you're repurposing an item eg. a letter opener is now an athame) and for your item to all round work for you.
What: This is the act in which we clean the item (book) while this is meant as more of a metaphysical cleaning/cleansing by all means feel free to literally physically clean if the item is dirty or just magickally which is what the term cleansing actually means. There are a number of ways in which Pagans and/or Witches like to do this: From passing it through the smoke of a (often sage) smudge wand, burying it in earth or salt, leaving it under the full moon for a day and a night, holy water blessing etc.. The list goes on (feel free to look into this and find what works for you!)
Why: To consecrate is like the ritual part, now you have cleansed it from it's past energies it's now time bless the item. Doing this gives your item its purpose and for it to know it's purpose and also for you to know it's purpose and this, at least for me, binds you and the item together. You may also wish to dedicate the item to a certain god(esse), pantheon, spirit, saint, ancestor.. etc..
What: This is super easy to do but very powerful.. It can also be done in a number of way and this may include saying a prayer over it, dedicating it to a certain god(esse), anointing it, naming it, telling it what it's purpose is, what it is for, what your intentions are with that item etc.
Why: Now we've taken the energies away and given it a purpose it's now time to imbue new energies into the item. (And no not by charging we don't mean plugging it into the mains, although if you went with a digital BoS.. then yes literally! lol) - Charging actually means giving it its own power/energy and building upon that. Charging an item with the energy you wish the item to behold such as a 'healing' crystal, 'knowledgeable' book, 'lucky' charm, 'psychic' cards etc..
What: There's a number of ways items can be charge but most common is under a new or full moon, another option may be music or a sound like from a bell or a singing bowl, Oils, Meditating with the item, sleep with it under your pillow etc.
* Charging is a recurring act it can be done in one or multiple ways. It can be done once a month, week, before and/or after every time you use it.. Maybe only on the Sabbats (Pagan Holidays).
Activity: I'm assuming you got your book, as prompted last Sunday, or at least something you can use for now like a workbook or mock book you can dedicate to these prompts. - Or even not a book at all, try it with a thrifted item or one you feel disconnected from. But if you did get your book then assuming you haven't already why not go ahead and do The Three C's and go Cleanse, Consecrate and Charge your book(s). - If you already have, no harm in charging it again.. (as said *)
P2B: Book Blessing and/or Dedication:
Most Books (Book of Shadows, Book of Angels, Grimoire, Witches Journal, Book of Mirrors, Book of Light, Book of Blessings, Book of...) start with a Book Blessing and/or Dedication(s).
This may be something you want to do as part of your Consecrating of the book! Or after as a whole separate ritual / working / act.. Book Blessing in this case is literally the written word usually on one of the first page of your book you will write this. Now you can simply use the generic one off of the internet - nothing wrong with that. But if you're like me and are creative and love to create your own and personalise things then absolutely go ahead and do as I did and write your own - sorry not going to share mine!! But, writing tips, you can write it so it may or may not rhyme, be based upon the generic one (shared below), could include your intention of the book, could be addressed to the Elements, Deity, Divine, God(esse) etc... A common found Book Blessing on the internet is..
"Elements, protect this book,
From wandering eyes and prying look,
And fill it with Thine ancient power,
In this right and ready hour"
...it doesn't have to be as short. It can be whatever you like, and if you like you can also incorporate your dedication to state what this book is for, who it is for etc. For example I have addressed mine to The Divine and not the Elements and I have also asked for assistance in filling the book with knowledge so as I may continue help myself and others. - There really isn't a right or wrong way (unless you're a strictly X religion follower eg. A strict by the book Wiccan then maybe there's a set way, for me I'm Eclectic Wiccan and do what feels right to me as long as I'm harming none!)
If you didn't do the dedication as part of your book blessing you may want to do this on the next page. You may wish to have more than one dedication say a book dedication, your personal dedication to your craft, your dedication to your god(esses). This may or may not include a prayer.
You may also wish to follow this up on the next few pages with the written word of your faith or practice. For me while I am not stricly by the book Wiccan I did include the full version of the Wiccan Rede, printed out and stuck in my book on 2 pages (Had I wrote it by hand it would have been more like 6 pages lol) and then also the 13 Goals of The Witch. But if you're a Christian then maybe the 10 commandments or some other religion / faith feel free to add anything like that that resonates with you or you wish to honour.
Activity: Yes, you guessed it.. If you haven't already.. Then go research book blessings and add this to your book. Note, it's your book it doesn't have to be the first page or the first few pages.. It can also be a tip-in, hidden/concealed or inscribed into your book s inside front cover - have fun with it.. Add art (free hand, traced, stamped as mentioned in my mini-series), add symbol or symbolism (I'll touch on that later), add a personal Sigel (again I'll be touching on that soon too) or simply do as I have and not decorate the page while you wait for inspiration to come.. No rush!
P2C: About Me (you):
For me my book is a reference book I want to include all the things I need to know - including some of the stuff I do know, since Fibromyalgia brain fog likes to creep in sadly. So one of the things I wanted to start with after my Book Blessing / Dedication is an 'About Me' section.
I want this to include given traits like my star sign (zodiac and meaning, Chinese zodiac, element, Chinese element, tree, stones, number, season/sabbatical, astral chart from when I was born along side any other 'about me given things'.
Studying ourself/yourself - my main tip here isn't to just go grab the first information you seen on one website and keep that as the undeniable it's written on the internet so it must be 100% accurate truth - STOP.. shop around (so to speak). That said I do recommend this website to get you started: https://www.myspiritualprofile.com/ - for me it's accurate. On a separate notebook/piece of paper you may wish to write down all your correspondences. Ie, what day of the week you were born on, under what planet, birthstone, birth sign, element, season etc.. And once you've wrote all that down do your research and if it still seems pretty accurate about you then delve in and find out more about your number and what does it mean, what are the properties of your birthstone, tree, element.. What are the traits of your star sign etc etc.. - Note you don't have to just write the ones from the website but also write your own, if you've had a favourite colour all your life, a lucky number, a tree you're fond of or a stone you carry.. Write that!!
Perhaps write about your familiar, spirit animal/guide, totem animals (I'll be covering them at a later date too) or simply leave a space for it if you don't know right now. Maybe include your name meaning (birth, martial, other names). Favourite season, element that corresponds best with you (I wrote a whole blog years ago based on YouTuber TipToeChick's finding your element series http://ppwwmm.blogspot.co.uk/2015/03/ww-lesson-finding-my-element.html) - Just because you're a Fire sign doesn't mean it works for you!! Maybe have a basics section for your kids, siblings and/or parents - or just yourself.
Maybe you may be into astrology or just want to add your astrological Birth Chart - https://www.astro.com/cgi/ade.cgi?ract=genchart.cgi&lang=e - again feel free to look around online.
Maybe take time to meditate and take a long look at yourself, your given traits, your adopted ones. Your hobbies and interests.. Who are you as a person, how can you apply that to your craft..?
1. What type of Pagan/Witch are you? Maybe apply that somehow. - Eg. You're a kitchen witch, I happen to know that Aliexpress has kitchen tool stamps which may work nicely. You're a luna witch, get yourself some moon stickers or sticky notes. You're a hedge witch, grab yourself some green and brown pencils and draw leaves (Ivy would look nice) as page borders. You're not a witch at all, well I'm sure you could draw symbols of your religion/faith or get stamps and embellish away..
2. For me in this section I wanted to include a photo of myself. (Tip, your photo should be acid free so as not to ruin your book over time!) Options.. So I could just stick in a photo of myself but I want to take into consideration that I'll age and I want this book to be a forever book if possible so in 30, 40, 50 years.. I'll want to have updates. For me I've decided to use photo corners so I can add and remove 6x4 photos as I deem fit. Alternatives may be to continuously tape a new photo over the top of the old one, this could even be done in waterfall format so you can flip through from newest on top to oldest on the bottom. Just an idea. Doesn't have to even be you it could be your familiar, your altar, your favourite items, ancestors etc and these pictures could be added throughout your book in one of the previous mentioned ways or tip-in as a page itself, in a secret pocket, envelope, hidden..
3. Feel free to refer back to my blog "What to add (visually) to your Book of Shadows / Grimoire etc" @ http://ppwwmm.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/what-to-add-visually-to-your-book-of.html - for artistic ideas, or my Pinterest board!!
4. Scrapbook or collage style you might want to include some 3D elements like a pop-up picture, your favourite makeup, glitter, paint, a charm, small flat 3D objects, hair/fur, I recently bought a wax seal stamp of my zodiac symbol on it.. etc..
5. Think about your presentation, it doesn't have to be masses of detail. It doesn't all have to be cramped on 1,2 or even 3 pages.. Spread out, learn about yourself.. Leave room or create a pocket so you can add more about yourself throughout the years.. One thing for sure on this path I'm always learning and sometimes it's even new things about myself be it a name or term for something I've always done or believed, be it a hobby or trait, be it a new correspondence, totem animal, familiar, spirit animal/guide, angel, lost ancestor, the list is endless and while this whole book is about me and my practice I'd like to have a section at the front for personal to me things, things that aren't everyone else.. Well apart from those born on the 20/12/88 but even then I dare say won't have the same name, be born in the same town, like the same things, correspond with all the same things...
6. For the very basics of us. You could just write the information in a list format. Or print out the wording and pictures from the internet... Though even the goth in me is screaming for something prettier, personalised and dare I even say.. colourful?
7.There's absolutely no rush, thus why I suggested a notebook or piece of paper.. Gather your information together before deciding on your layout / format.
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Next weeks prompts No.3 - The pentacle/pentagram and the 4 Elements..