In the metaphysical and pagan communities, we are told it is crucial to cast a circle before rituals and sabbats. But why do we cast a circle? It is just some magical hoo-ha? Casting a circle isn’t just a silly tradition, it has purpose. That purpose is to protect us spiritually during our pagan rituals, and the circle contains raised energy until it is ready to be released. A circle is sacred space made wherever you deem necessary. A circle can be cast in your living room or backyard. Cast a circle while you’re taking a cleansing herbal bath in the tub. You can even cast a circle when you’re out in public and need extra protection and comfort.
When you need a quick circle for protection in public places, here’s how to cast a simple circle:
Casting a circle is part of traditional coven work, as well as ceremonial magic. Not every witch will cast one before every spell and ritual. Some choose to cast a circle only before lengthy and involved rituals, esbats, and sabbats. And sometimes it is definitely helpful to protect yourself if invoking elements or deities you’ve never called on before. But it’s certainly not a requirement for every witch. Some witches don’t ever cast a circle. The great thing about witchcraft is it’s truly up to you how you practice. Whether you encircle your magick or not is your business.
Depending on the pagan rituals or workings performed determines how elaborate the circle casting will be. If you’re performing a ritual or sabbat outside, you can include things like an altar, altar tools, offerings for gods, candles, herbs, salt, etc. If you’re in public and need a quick circle for protection, nothing is needed except for your mind.
Representing the elements at the four corners of the circle, you’ll need:
Again, this depends on your preference and the ritual performed. In addition, some use a wand or an athame to cast the circle, but your finger and mind do fine without tools. Some choose to outline the circle physically with branches, salt, flowers, rocks, candles, etc. This is all up to you.
For pagan rituals and sabbats, after cleansing and preparation, proceed:
Keep in mind, if you wanted to physically cast the circle with salt, ashes, branches, or flower petals, do so while walking the circle during casting. Still others draw a circle on the floor with chalk or temporary paint. Change the invocation quotes above to your preference. Leave out the four element representations at the four corners, if you’d like. Use your finger as a wand or athame. Other variations include invocation of the guardians of the watchtowers, elementals, angels, ancestors, or certain gods and goddesses. Some practitioners wait until after the circle is cast to invoke their gods and ancestors, but the choice is yours.
Some people prefer to invoke the elements when casting a circle, while others call on the guardians of the watchtowers. What’s the difference between the two? When the elements earth, air, fire, and water are invoked to cast a circle, we are calling those elements specifically and the energy they bring. When the guardians of the watchtowers are called, we invoke the highest beings that watch over each directional point and related element. These are sometimes seen as gods and goddesses, sometimes seen as angels. This depends on tradition and personal belief. To add another layer of complexity, when we invoke “elementals” we are invoking a different kind of being than the guardians or the elements themselves. Elementals refer to beings from the fay realm such as gnomes for Earth, sylphs for Air, undines for Water, and salamanders for fire. Who you invoke in your circle is totally up to you.
I’d like to put a lot of buzz words here but that would be too …September 15, 2023