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Witches & ceremonial magicians

If you cast a circle before preforming a ritual or spell, what is your primary motivation for doing so? Is it for protection? To mark out sacred space? Tradition? Some other reason? Something I read recently made me wonder how most feel about it now-a-days.

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Asked by nysa00 at 12:37 PM on Sep. 8, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 4 (36 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • If I am doing a simple spell, meditation or divination, I do not create a circle. For ritual's and more powerful or involved spells I do. For protection? Yes. but also to mark my sacred space and because of tradition... I guess there are a few reasons.

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 12:50 PM on Sep. 8, 2009

  • If I do simple workings/meditation I do not cast a circle... When I first started practicing I created a sacred spot/circle that I use all the time .... it is always protected...
    And when I do cast a circle, it is for protection ... and for me it's a place that the energies that I am working with are contained (in a sense)...

    Answer by gmasboy at 1:22 PM on Sep. 8, 2009

  • Sacred space, outside temporal time and place, not subject to the mundane, closer to the Goddess and God.

    Answer by pagan_mama at 2:09 PM on Sep. 8, 2009

  • All of the above & then some. It depends on what I'm doing within the circle & my main intent for creating it. For a public ritual where no magick is used, it is mostly to mark the sacred space for those in attendance. For certain private works, it is a boundary of protection. But mostly it is one of the acts that helps change my mindset and my focus for deeper magicks or workings. It is a signal to my higher self that I am about to step outside the physical constraints of time and space...that I am "leaving" the mundane, physical world and stepping into spirit. My working area is within a permanent circle that is a combination of these elements.

    The way I cast the circle reflects my intentions. The public or group ritual is more ritualized and based more on tradition. The private protective circle doesn't usually include a verbal casting at all. The last one is free form & takes a lot of concentration & energy.

    Answer by jessradtke at 11:10 AM on Sep. 9, 2009

  • Thanks for your responses. I was really curious about how much protection played into the mindset of modern witches when casting a circle. When I read recently something that was worded to make it sound like the circle was to protect the witch/magician from evil demons getting in, it surprised me a bit. I think of a circle as keeping out all the chaotic energy floating around (especially since I am in an urban setting), but I had never thought of it as keeping out baddies. That makes sense for 18th century ceremonial magicians who were using the Abrahamic model of good vs. bad as the basis for their beliefs, but I am having a harder time reconciling it with modern Pagan practices. Your answers are insightful for me.


    Answer by nysa00 at 12:39 PM on Sep. 9, 2009

  • Casting a Circle (for me and my group) doesn't have to be a big elaborate to-do. I will often cast just by reciting (in my head or out loud) "By the Earth that is Her Body, the Air that is Her Breath, the Fire that is Her Bright, and the Living Waters of Her Womb..."

    Answer by MamaK88 at 10:40 AM on Sep. 10, 2009

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