For me, this month of working with the element of Water and the direction of West has been a whirlwind or in keeping with the theme a whirlpool. So much has happened over this past month, I don’t know where to begin. I think the element has made experience every emotion a human can feel and then some. I will be glad when this one is over and I can move into the North and ground. I found it really interesting that everything that was pre-planned within this month fell in line with the element. From events that centered around the elements to taking a break with a camping and rafting trip down the Delaware River. The scary thing is that I still have a week or two before I am finished and I can see it getting worse. As I come to a close, I can feel situations pulling my moral compass into directions that are going to fuel emotions and my mouth. Retrograde has nothing on the element of Water.
This Month I put a focus on not only the element itself, but its associated direction and my traditions animal spirit of Bear. Bear for me has many personalities. Bear can be the two-sided mamma Bear who is loving and nurturing, and yet be the fierce protector. Bear is also the guardian and doorkeeper of the underworld. When working the Wheel, Bear takes over your journey after Wolf/Coyote lead you down your path. He takes you the land of the dead where you find your true self. Bear introduces you to your ancestors and puts in dangerous situations that rip you apart from the inside out.
Bear resides in the West, he lives at the base of the mountains, where lies certain death (hence his association with the dead). But enough of Bear and the West lets talk a little about the element of Water.
The element of Water is most often connected with our emotions. Water is life’s necessity without it nothing can live. It is a component in the cells of all living beings; it is our very essence. It is the one common denominator that connects all as one. Water is constantly flowing and changing, which is why it’s associated with our emotions. Both cannot remain in one state for long and are always in constant motion. Our emotions are what define and shape who we are as living beings and as Individuals. In “The Modern Witch’s Curriculum”, I replaced the word Water with LOVE to help the reader subconsciously connect with the element. So, I will do the same here from this point forward. When we focus on increasing the LOVE element in our lives, we begin the process of cleansing and healing our spirit. The element helps us purify and cleanse our spirit of harmful emotions that could be holding us back. Once these emotions are removed or at least acknowledged, we can begin the healing process while working within this element. This is a time to focus on working out those unresolved issues that so many of us hold on to.
I have listed the practices that I will be working on over the next few weeks, as well as a few others that you can do to connect with the direction and the element of LOVE.
I tend to do this more often than meditation when exploring this element. Although, I do still like to listen to the sounds of the ocean or rain when going to sleep, which usually turns into a conventional meditation session anyway. When doing mindful bathing, I recommend not using candles, incense, or salts. This will keep your focus on just one element. Prepare by drawing a warm bath. Before stepping in, request the element to physically, mentally and emotionally cleanse, heal and purify you. As you step in, envision the healing LOVE enveloping your body and spirit. Once you are settled and comfortable, breathe slowly and deeply. Allow the LOVE to help you relax. Imagine becoming one with the LOVE. When you are finished remember to that the element of LOVE.
During this month I choose to devote time to two of the most important allies in my life, my Ancestors and the Orisha, Oshun. Although, both are always a normal focus for me, I really made it a point to sit and talk with them each day, rather than just my normal morning rituals. I have a strong relationship with both already, that this didn’t put me out of my comfort zone too much.
When creating a devotional routine to a Deity in connection with the element of LOVE, I would do this with a Deity that has some form of linking the element in their mythos or to you personally. You do not have to make it lengthy, just spend a few moments with your deity, asking for blessings, advice, or just thanking them. I usually like to offer incense and say a few words.
Because each month begins and ends with a Full Moon ritual as I work through the ritual becomes a major part of connecting with the elements. I started this month off with a full moon cleansing ritual. Even though the members of my group are not going through the prep work of connecting with each element. They get to reap the benefits of the elemental focus of the rituals. For this Full Moon we utilized the cleansing and healing magickal properties of water by washing away the harmful energies that may lay dormant in our mind, words, and heart. We also put a lot of focus on our ancestors with a meditation session and then sending any messages we had for them down the river.
There are many ways you can add water to your Full Moon rituals, in my first book “Casting Creative Magickal Circles” I have a circle casting that uses water taken from the four directions to cast a circle.
Many divination practices work well during this month as well. From scrying to dreams, this element has a profound effect on our ability to use our intuition. As with any types of magickal practices I always recommended keeping a journal, so why not keep a journal of your dreams this month. You find that your dreams will be heightened as you work through the element. Although, dreams are most often associated with the element of fire. It is the actual dream and the messages contained within them that can be attributed to the element of LOVE and not the actual act of dreaming.
You can also incorporate the use of tarot in when working with the element of LOVE. Here are a few ways to use tarot this month:
– Refresh your knowledge of all the cup cards of the deck.
– Pick a card that is associated with the element to mediate on each day.
– Use a spread that focuses on the magickal correspondences of LOVE. Here is one from “The Modern Witch’s Curriculum” that I tend to use often.
Place card 1 on the far left, then place card 2 and card 3 diagonally going down. Then place card 4 and 5 diagonally going up. Place card 6 between card 1 and 5 and above 3.
- Your tide. What state are your emotions?
- Your dam. What blocks you?
- Your depth. Where does my compassion lay?
- Your swell. What enlightens you?
- Your crest. What is your breaking point?
- Your ship. What will make you successful?
Some other things you can do
I have listed other things that I will be doing throughout the month and that I have done in the past as well.
– Write a Letter to someone who you have something to say too.
– Clean your house, car or office
–Research and learn about how other traditions and cultures view and use the element of LOVE. If we look at the history of our ancestors, there is a direct correlation between LOVE and spirituality. For some Native American tribes Love is the creative life force. Hindu traditions consider LOVE to be a purifier, life giver, and the destroyer of evil. In the more recent western cultures, the Christian church places significant importance on LOVE as well, in their practices of baptism. Research your own tradition and ancestral practices and their uses and beliefs associated with LOVE.
– Attune yourself to the element of LOVE by evaluating your relationships (parents, children, companions, friends). Science states that our bodies are comprised of approximately 60% of LOVE. Metaphysically, then we can only assume that LOVE and its energy can affect us on a spiritual level and vice versa. According to the Japanese author and researcher Dr. Masaru Emoto, he claimed that our thoughts and emotions could influence water’s molecular structure. He analyzed frozen water crystals that were exposed to thoughts and feelings of positive emotions and found them to have beautiful geometric designs and water influenced by negative thoughts and emotions appeared to create jagged and ugly looking shapes7. Although, Emoto’s work is widely regarded as pseudoscience and has yet to be proven scientifically, there may still be something in his findings, spiritually. If our thoughts can affect the molecular structure of LOVE, then what effect might our thoughts have on our bodies and our emotions? Because our emotions also affect our relationships these two are both closely related to the energy of LOVE. Evaluate your relationships and the emotions they cause. In doing so, you open yourself up to a better understanding of the energy of LOVE.
– Study the correspondences of herbs, oils, and crystals associated with the element of LOVE. Create your own incense or oil recipe. The belief that unconnected things share a metaphysical connection is not an uncommon belief in many cultures and religions. Correspondences are not limited to just Witchcraft, Pagan, and other magickal traditions. Correspondences can also be found in Chinese and East Indian traditional medicine manuals and in many of the worlds religious teachings. This may be the reason that there are so many connections and yet so many differences among the teachings of Witchcraft. Nonetheless, this is what makes modern and eclectic Witchcraft so wonderful. Today, many Witches create their own correspondences based on their own experiences and personal beliefs. However, the one core concept they all share is that everything in nature has a special meaning and can be used in the magickal world. Use these special meanings to create your own LOVE oil or incense based on what you researched.
– Create and perform a spell using the element of LOVE as its focus. LOVE and its magick are often used for healing and purification. For centuries, believers have journeyed to sacred springs and source of LOVE, and more recently people visit spas and hot springs in the hope of relaxation and of being healed. Just as then, the Witches of today understand the energy of LOVE. The practice of ritual bathing to wash away unwanted energies and to shift their consciousness can be seen in many traditions of Witchcraft and many other religions as well. However, these are not the only purposes. LOVE has many uses in magick. Create a spell using LOVE as its main focus or tool.