The old saying “the pen is mightier than the sword” is extremely true in Wicca and Witchcraft. Writing rituals can be a powerful addition to your magickal life, however they are sometimes difficult to master. If you’re practicing along or just getting started on your path, you may have found that resources on the subject are few and far between. A lot of Wicca 101 books pay the technique lip service, but often don’t add any practical advice.
If you do a little searching, you can find ritual outlines and scripts that can help you develop your own personal style. Rituals that you write are much more powerful and personal than generic ones. It may sound like a frightening idea to the beginner. I was scared too. I was so worried that I would screw something up or make a mistake. I had no idea how to construct my rituals, or if I was doing the right thing. And when I did try to write my own rituals I felt like I was checking my notes constantly and wasn’t deeply immersed in the ritual. Can you relate?
First and foremost, I must emphasize that there is no wrong way or right way to write a ritual. The most important part in any ritual is intention, and the Goddess can hear you clearly when you speak from your heart. If you make a mistake, you aren’t going to get hit by lightening or anything! Believe me, if that happened, myself and lots of others on the path wouldn’t be here to tell you about it.
Its important to remember that writing a good ritual is going to take practice, which means, unfortunately, lots of mistakes along the way. It’s all part of the process. Do not be afraid to experiment with your rituals. Once you master the technique, it will do your practice a lot of good.
There is a basic format of ritual creation that is followed. The beginning step is to analyze what the ritual is for. Do you want to raise energy? Is this a ritual to mark a holiday or a special occasion? Deciding what type of ritual you will do effect the type of tools and elements you will use in your ritual. Focus your ritual on one or two intentions to keep the length of the ritual down. While its good to spend time in ritual, you may get unfocused if you try to draw it out too long or add too many spells or chants.
Next, think about who will be attending your ritual. What will the size of the group be? You’ll want to organize the ritual in such a way so that there is a good balance between the leader’s role and group participation. Also think about the location your ritual will take place. Will there be enough room for everyone to move comfortably, or do you need to plan a ritual that does not require much movement? Your surroundings will determine the style of the ritual. Outdoor rituals have a different flavor and feeling than indoor ones.
If you are planning a solitary ritual, you’ll also want to think about space. Will you have enough room to lie out your altar and tools? If you are planning a ritual in a small room, you’ll want to add a section toward the beginning of your ritual where you clear the space, both physically and energetically. If you live with roommates, also remember to magickly block yourself from interruptions, and plan the ritual for a time that you’ll know you’ll have privacy.
After considering the space and size of the group involved, its time to get out your pen (or keyboard) and begin formulating your ritual. Most rituals follow a basic format that can be adapted for any purpose. Before the ritual begins, you cleanse and purify the space, gather your materials and set up your altar. Then you’ll call the quarters, call the God and Goddess, cast the circle, perform your spells, send out the built up energy to do your work, thank the quarters and deities, and then close the circle.
Each step can be customized to the purpose of your ritual. You’ll want to gather tools that will help your magickal working for the evening, and set up your altar with colors and elements that correspond to your work. Many people have a standard call for the elements and deities and a casting spell that they use each time. If you’ve been using one from a book for a while, it might be enjoyable to write your own. Do this well in advance of the ritual. If you come up with something that truly speaks to you, try it in a few rituals and edit it as you need to. Anything you can do to personalize your ritual will allow you to put more power and energy into your spell work.
Above all, have fun! There is nothing that you write or say that is “wrong.” It’s all part of an exploratory process. As you develop your own rituals and writing style, your magick will reach a deeper level.
So pick up your pen and write freely!
Until next time,
Your Warm And Caring "Resident Witch In Charge"