How do you use a Symbol?
The very fabric of Worship, Prayer and Magic.
Tonata………Good evening my friends.
I have noticed some of the comments made from time to time by people who have visited and spoken about esoteric things, so although it is a vast subject, I wish to try to put into some kind of order the answer as to how you use a symbol?
Because it is such a vast subject I must limit my response, for a symbol conveys many different levels of understanding. There is one level built upon another, and depending upon how you use that symbol so those different levels will be invoked. I will not speak of how they are used by a poet, an artist or psychologist, even though symbols are their ‘stock in trade’, I think you call it. I wish to speak about how a symbol may be used in worship, in prayer and in magic.
Any kind of worship, any kind of prayer and any kind of magic, is made up of symbols and symbolism. The human mind cannot hold these raw concepts without symbols. Symbols are the condensed understanding of what worship, prayer and magic is all about. Let me explain.
First we should consider ‘shape’.
Every single object affects subtle energies and energy fields. Every object does. It doesn’t matter what that object may be, but depending upon the shape of that object so it affects more strongly or not, or in a particular way, the energy field in which it rests. Or if there is an energy flow it disrupts that flow or focuses that flow. It is the nature of matter. So, for example, a circle has its focus at its centre and for any energy field in which it rests there is a concentration of that field at the centre. For a pyramid or cone there is that natural focus of those energies a third of the way up from its base on the central axis. But concerning your pyramid or cone there is also a flow of energy at the topmost point. It just happens. You do not have to have any kind of engine or mind behind the flow to produce it. It just happens simply because of the shape.
Those energy flows from the top of the cone can be made more vigorous simply by adding more points around and beneath that central top point like adding a trident or shape similar to your lightening conductor. The overall shape affects the energy flows, the energy fields. That is what manipulation is about. That is what a symbol is, something that changes a situation of some kind. That is the point of using a symbol, and is itself a demonstration of power.
But that introduces another aspect of control – the material that is used.
If you etch in sand, or, in your society, if you draw a shape on paper, or simply sketch it in the air with a finger, that will affect energies – but of an absolute minimal effect. I have heard great claims made about designs on paper which affect fruit or food or water, and I almost despair at the ignorance which is being displayed. Yes it does affect things. It will affect the energies in the immediate vicinity, but in a very small way. But take that flat design and make it into an object and you introduce more than one extra dimension of manipulation. A three dimensional object has far greater chance to shape those energy fields and energy flows and the material has such profound effects. It is no mistake to call gold the sacred metal, for that metal has the greatest affinity of all for subtle energies. It seems to make them leap.
So depending upon the shape of that golden object, you have a very powerful instrument, a very powerful symbol, which can be used by the practitioner to affect a situation. If you do not have gold then iron or copper are good substitutes. Or if you wish to deflect those energies rather than draw them or focus them in some way, then silver or cloth, natural cloth of silk or cotton are good insulators, – as for storing crystals.
Sacred geometry is what we are talking about here – the shape and material of your symbol or instrument.
But that goes on to introduce yet another aspect. What you wish to use the symbol for. If it is for healing, then a wooden staff or magic wand [as some people would call it] is most effective, for wood is a natural conductor of chi energy, the energy of the body, the energy of living things. However if you wish to use such a staff for magic, then a metal rod, or a wooden rod with metal rings around it, should be used.
We must always consider the use of the symbol and then also the type of energy you are endeavouring to manipulate. So, for example, the energy of fire is used for blessing or curses, and fire in its elemental form is symbolised through candles or an actual fire itself. Or divination may be what you are after, so in that case although it is still the element of fire, a particular herb or wood could be used to burn that invokes that gift.
But so far I have only spoken really of the symbols or objects with little reference to human intervention, for they still work despite human beings. The shape should be considered, the material of the symbol should be considered, why you want to use this symbol, and the type of energy that you want to manipulate. All of these things will work in what I call a passive mode. But people are usually involved in the actual use of a symbol rather than letting the energies work on their own, so that takes it from a passive mode to an active one, from a default setting [I think is one word you might use] to the use of Will and a turning up of the intensity many fold.
The practitioner, the person who wishes to use the symbol, should consider the intensity of their emotions behind their act. It is the intensity of emotion that releases the power of the practitioner into the symbolic act of worship, prayer or magic. If the practitioner has little feeling for, say a friend who the practitioner wishes to heal or pray for, then there will not be much power in the act or through the practitioner, even though that practitioner may know something about the use and nature of symbols.
So let us introduce knowledge and understanding of the practitioner into the equation, for if the practitioner is ignorant then any act is nothing more than superstition. To hold a cross up to ward off evil may give a most unpleasant surprise for everyone, but there is little effectiveness in that act even though the practitioner’s emotion might be of desperation. There should be understanding and practice to turn ignorance into ability, into proficient ability. These are what changes an initiate eventually into an adept and makes that person a mage or great healer.
But there is one dimension that is forgotten at the practitioner’s peril and that is their integrity, their spirituality. For depending upon their closeness to either the light or the dark so their magic or prayer may be true or go awry, to be used for them or go against them, to increase their karmic debt or dispel their karmic debt, to increase their spirituality and journey into the light or to send them plummeting further into the darkness. Their own energy is used, relating to their emotional content, and this is a means to release the energy of the light or dark. It is a partnership of prayer, worship or magic.
So, for example, that practitioner who wishes to pray for healing for a friend should use a symbol such as a candle because it is invoking spiritual forces that are of the light, of fire, but placed in a wooden holder, for chi also to be involved, the element of the healer. The candle may be placed in an alcove or shrine or sacred place in which the practitioner may use as a place of work. Then if there is concern, real concern, for that friend, and if the practitioner has a close standing with the Divine, then the symbolic act focuses the mind around the symbol and the whole is effective, for they pray knowingly with surety, with faith and belief and knowledge.
In time also, the symbols that are used and the places in which they are used take on greater significance, take on greater power within themselves. In time the symbols change. A staff becomes more than just a staff but also a potent instrument. In time an orb, which is a form of accumulator, with its special cross on the top from which the energies move, or the very site that the practitioner uses, all these become imbued with power as well.
But let me take one step backwards. As I said symbols have their meanings within art, poetry and psychology but also within society. One good example of that is the Ankh cross. This was a symbol which in my time was a symbol of the life force in the worship of Ptah. It was also used in my society as a symbol of Venus and the sign of a prostitute or of that trade. But that same Ankh cross, if it was used by a practitioner of Ptah became symbols of great power, more so than possibly a wand or a crystal in the art of healing. It was held by the ring in the palm of the hand and the cross pointed to where the energy was needed. So the practitioner, who is a mage or adept, could take any of these similar symbols and use them as channels of great power no matter what the general understanding or use of that symbol may be. But symbolic objects that have been repeatedly used by adepts have a potency of their own, and if they are used by an ignorant person may cause confusion and certainly an upset of energies, for they will not simply be passive objects any more.
So next time you wear a cross or light a candle or use cleansing water or an orb, consider its shape, its material, what you are using it for, what energies you wish to use, what is your intent, where your motivation and energy is coming from, what is your understanding and what are the consequences in that karmic spiritual way.
Do you have questions?
S €¦. Is a wooden wand better than a crystal wand for healing?
Tonata €¦ For most crystal work it is the placing of the crystals around the person that is effective. When using a wand then I would always suggest something of a wooden nature as the first step. But there is no reason why you cannot combine them and make them even more effective. So a crystal tip or a crystal at either end of a wand, or a wooden wand with a crystal tip and a metal band around, all will combine and it will make it more effective. And remember, the repeated use of that artefact will also pre-programme it, as it were, and make it more effective in a particular way, in a particular use.
S €¦. Does it matter what type of wood you use?
Tonata…. Yes, depending upon what kind of healing work you are engaged upon. This does not simply rest with whether it is of a single type of wood or not. Generally the healer’s wood would tend to be considered the elderberry, but you can also use chestnut, beech and ash. The Ash would normally be more concerned with spirituality and blessings, the beech more to do with ‘earthing’, the chestnut more to do with mental awareness and unease. So there is not one single type of wood to cover all things. Does that just confuse the issue more?
C…… Would you say more about the karmic aspect to things?
Tonata…… Nothing happens without consequences. Before you carry out any act or magic or intercessory prayer there should be consideration given as to why you are doing it and what the consequences would be for the person you are praying for and the consequences for yourself. There are many people who are, in fact, injured by ignorant prayer. How can someone who, for example, has homosexual tendencies be ‘healed’ by prayer. All that prayer may do may be to confuse the person on the receiving end if the practitioner is trying to instil a straight sexuality within the person. There will be guilt and conflict. There will be mixed desire. There will be pain and injury. And do not think that that will stay with the person who is being prayed for. There will be consequences to the person who is doing the praying. They will be in debt to that person prayed for. They will be adding karma to themselves. And if there is a fear of homosexuality within that person who is doing the praying, then, because of the strength of their emotions, there will be even greater fear resulting and further alienation from the powers of light. There may even be, unknowingly, an affinity with the forces of darkness and disruption. That is all on the head of the person who is praying.
Therefore there should always be consideration as to what is the helpful thing for the recipient, even though that thought may be against the practitioners feeling of comfort. What would the Divine have for this time for this person? How best to serve this person, how best to bring light into the situation, to ease pain, to inspire people, to make the way sure? These are questions that should never be far from the practitioner’s thoughts as they work.
We have moved a bit further from symbols but it was necessarily so. I will stop there.