For many witches the act of cleansing oneself of bothersome or unwelcomed energies, followed by fundamental acts such as warding, releasing, and focusing are daily activities. These rituals can take a number of forms, varying in complexity, length, tools, talents, and effectiveness.
Within the Stardust Compass, it is recommended that a witch cleanse their energy bodies prior to any workings (if not more frequently) using whatever technique they feel accomplishes this in an effective way.
In an attempt to provide a tool which accomplishes the aforementioned objectives without requiring any physical components, spoken words, or gestures the following arte has been created.
We contain both a physical form and an energetic one. Our energetic form not only permeates our entire body, but also extends outwards into a “field” which surrounds us at all times - expanding or contracting as necessary.
Some feel that our energetic form contains multiple layers. One view says that our spiritual field is the largest of these (sometimes extending over a meter from our body), nested within this is our mental body (typically seen to extend half a meter or less from our body), followed by an emotional body (which often is felt to only radiates out a few centimeters from our own flesh), and ending with a physical one (confined to our flesh and within).
Others believe that such distinctions are but a reflection of the spectrum of energies which radiate outwards from our bodies, corresponding to one’s energy centers. That we contain no distinct set of energetic bodies, but a spectrum of forces which emanate from within.
For the purposes of this working we will focus on two fundamental perspectives: that of energies which exist upon or within our physical form, and that of energies which exist around us in what we will refer to as our aura.
Swimming and marbled within our energies (both within our bodies and throughout our aura) are forces which can benefit or hinder us. Some of these forces originate from within, while others come to us from external sources. Distinguishing the subtle differences among the various energies which permeate a witch’s energetic body is a skill that ze should continually be refining. However, worry not if you are unable to sensate such differences initially - our energetic bodies often intuitively know what energies we want to retain and those which we wish to purge. It will work in concert with the witch to expel energies which do not belong if given an avenue to do so (such as the working which follows).
As is comfortable for you, stand or sit firmly yet relaxed with your feet on the ground, shoulder width apart. Your back should be straight but comfortable, head held upright, and shoulders relaxed. Hands should be relaxed either at one’s side (if standing), or on the legs (if sitting).
When breathing, ensure your diaphragm is engaged (your stomach should go in and out, not your chest). Take long, slow, deep breaths.
As you inhale count to 3, 4, or 5 seconds (as you feel comfortable), pause when your lungs are full for a few moments, release using the same count you inhaled with, and pause again when your lungs are empty before beginning to inhale again.
Your eyes can be opened, or closed, as you see fit.
Your hands can engage in gestures to support the work you are about to do, as you see fit.
Take a deep breath.
Perform breathing cycles of empty, waxing, full, waning, empty (akin to dance of the sun, moon, seasons, etc.) until you are feeling relaxed and ready to move on with the exercise.
Purging The Self
A multitude of energies will often make their way into our bodies from the world around us, or are birthed from within - including many which do not serve us, and others which do not belong so close to our core. Rare and treasured should be the energies which we allow to penetrate and linger within our flesh, blood, and bones. Most energies belong, instead, in the aura which surrounds us (if present at all).
From a relaxed state, focus on the energies within your body. Note the energies which are distinctly “you,” as well as any other forces within your body that you feel they belong there. Also notate any out-of-place energies you find within your body - foreign energies that do not belong (regardless of whether they help, or hinder you). Sometimes the best intended energies can be pulled too deeply, or malevolent forces can worm their way into our body - needing to be expelled.
Focus on those energies within you that you wish to remain. See them distinct from the other energies within you (be they good or bad) that you wish to remove. While focusing on the energies within you that you wish to keep, inhale sharply - inflaming them as you do. Hold your breath for a moment, feeling those energies you wish to keep glowing bright and vivid within you.
As you visualize those vibrant energies in your body, use their luminous nature to push away the energies you don't wish to remain in your body with a forceful exhale - blasting them out into your aura.
Return your focus to the energies you wished to keep in your body, and quickly breathe in while you recondense and strengthen them. Hold your breath for a moment, feeling your body glowing bright, strong, and vibrant within - retained energies condensing and spreading throughout your entire physical form.
Exhale in a gentle sigh and relax.
Purging The Aura
Now that the physical form has been cleansed of any energies which do not belong within, we focus our attention to our aura (including the newly introduced energies within it which were recently purged from our physical body). Similar to our physical form, the aura will contain energies both benevolent to your path & life, as well as those which are unwelcomed, unwanted, and unhelpful.
Focus on the energies within the aura you wish to retain. Take another sharp inhale, inflaming those specific forces that you wish to retain. Hold your breath for a moment, feeling those energies within your aura and body glowing bright and vivid.
As you visualize those vibrant energies in your aura, use their luminous nature to push away the energies you don't wish to remain in your aura with a forceful exhale - blasting them out into the infinite void beyond. Feel them grow weak, dissipate, and turn to ash as they fall away into the cosmic night - never to trouble you, or anyone else, again.
Return your focus to the energies you wished to keep in your aura, and quickly breathe in while you recondense and strengthen them. Hold your breath for a moment, feeling your aura glowing bright, strong, and vibrant - retained energies condensing and spreading all around you.
Exhale in a gentle sigh and relax.
Within the spirit filled universe of the Stardust Compass, a witch is encouraged to employ a form of protection which still allows for engagement and interaction with the world around them.
Oft one will find rites of protection which are designed to entirely nullify or reflect all outside forces. While these acts can help prevent unwanted energies or entities from interfering with the witch, it can also block contact with benevolent forces as well.
It is therefore suggested that members of the Wandering Coterie create and employ a form of energetic warding which acts as a selectively permeable form of protection: guarding one from unhelpful energies, opening to permit interaction with energies seeking to act in concert with one’s intention, and otherwise allowing for interaction with the Otherworld whenever appropriate.
It should be noted that warding varies dramatically from witch to witch, both in what ze finds comfortable, and what brings zer bliss. In general, however, a sort of bubble or shield which surrounds the witch in entirety is encouraged - protection which stretches overhead to underfoot, ensuring one’s aura and physical form is protected in all directions.
To Ward with the Hedge
After you have purged all unwanted energies from your body and aura, imagine a climbing plant (roses, ivy, etc) beginning to sprout forth from one or more places on your body (hands, feet, head, heart, etc). See these climbing up and around the outside of your aura, using your own energies to support and guide their growth as they surround you in a sphere from head to toe. Allow them to grow as dense or sparse as you wish, with thorns (or other defensive measures) as is appropriate.
Breathwork can be used to enhance the act of warding: inhaling to focus one’s intention on the warding, and exhaling to grow and strengthen that selfsame ward.
Burning with Starfire
Note: this step is optional, as it has the potential to cause an intense energetic response within a witch (or, for others, can manifest nothing at all).
Take a final sharp inhale in and hold it, feeling your entire energetic body glow like a star. It glows brighter than all creation, a blinding brilliance in the hue of your gnosis. This glow comes from within, your connection to the celestial realm manifesting through you. It inflames your aura and overwhelms all with your light. It is overpowering. It radiates out the truth that is you. Continue to hold your breath until you can’t any longer.
Gently exhale, allowing your glow to dissipate naturally - reducing in intensity as it does. Intentionally release any of this starlight as appropriate (see below).
Note: It is advised that a witch pick the color of zer radiance wisely. If unsure, a super-bright blueish-white is suggested. Inflaming oneself with some colors can be dangerous, especially if used regularly. A combination of gnosis, divination, and / or a trusted third party is suggested for consultation for witches desiring to manifest any particular hue regularly.
Workings of this nature can leave some witches buzzing with energy and potentially unable to focus. A simple release of these forces can be extremely beneficial to help the witch refocus as ze continues on with zer day.
Take a deep breath.
Breathe in and collect any excess energies that you wish to release back into the cosmos - be they in your aura, body, or both. Hold your full breath, accepting and thanking the energies for the part they played in your life. Exhale and visualize those energies moving out into the lands around you, or down into the dirt beneath you (even if you're on the top of a skyscraper). Continue to breathe and release as much as you feel called to.
Some find that bending down / sitting, so as to touch the land, helps them send energies out from their bodies easier.
To conclude we turn our focus back within.
Start by focusing on your wards. Feel them present and strong, guarding you and keeping you safe.
Next, sense your aura and the energies within it. Note how it has been cleansed of that which does not serve you, and the energies which remain have been strengthened and inflamed.
Last, take stock of your physical form and it’s energies. Purified of that which does not belong, containing only that which you wish to remain. Strong, vibrant, and bright.
Focusing here, on your physical form, the core essence of you, take a deep breath and relax into you. Relax into your own flesh, into your own body, into your own truth.
You may find one or more places within you where energies condense. Be it your heart, hands, groin, head, or elsewhere - all are valid. Acknowledge this concentration, and shift energies within if you feel so called. Within the Stardust Compass (in the esoteric tongue of Shen Tay’ll), the current place within your energetic body where your consciousness is experiencing the world is called Ta’fin, meaning “point of becoming.”
When you are ready, take in one final deep breath. Hold it, accepting & loving yourself for who you are, here and now, in this time and space. Release it with a relaxing sigh, and continue with your day.
Wisdom of the Rite
Take stock, both during and after the rite, of what energies you noticed within yourself that you purged out. Did they come from a wayward ex, a frustrating day in rush hour traffic, an aggressive coworker, a joyful celebration, or a blissful afternoon? Purging and cleansing one’s energies is a necessary activity, but noting the origins of those energies can be altogether more useful for a witch in the long run.
It can also be useful for a witch to keep a very specific list (ideally in written form) of the energies which are permitted to exist within their physical form, those permitted within one’s aura, and those which are never to be allowed in either. Such documentation and adherence can be a great boon to a practitioner, enabling them to create a much more refined practice which combines both intuition and intellect.
Additionally, when cutting ties (be they with people, places, groups, ideas, etc) one should intentionally purge those energies from their body and aura regularly until they feel they have cleared them in entirety.
Lastly, always remember that it is never acceptable for others to forcefully place energies within your aura or body without your consent. Ever.
A witch is encouraged to modify this rite to suit their needs as is appropriate. Be it covertly performing the otherwise violent breathing exercises, condensing the rite down to that of a single breath, or more... follow your gnosis and conduct the work as you feel so called.
It is better to conduct the work, than to not perform it at all.
Image: “Dew bokeh!" by Venu Gopal (CC: BY, NC, ND)