This is a mental discipline and a visualization exercise. Not a spell or ritual and as such, it can be done at any time.
You will need to be in a semi-meditative state while doing these exercises. If you tense up, the entire goal you are attempting to accomplish will slip away. I will deal with drawing energy first.
The types of energy you may draw on are directly related to where the energy is coming from. The places you may draw from are as follows:
- Air: very quick and flighty. Changes from calming to violent almost on a whim. (Blue)
- Water: Somewhat calm and controlled, but once moving for a particular purpose, changing it is very hard. (Green)
- Earth: Steady and solid. Hard to bend for one purpose, but once going, almost impossible to stop. (Brown)
- Fire: Extremely fast and all consuming. USE EXTREME CAUTION! Could very easily get out of control. (Yellow or Red)
[The proceeding were the Terrestrial Elements. The following are the Celestial Elements.]
- Moon: Mother and female oriented. Combines the best of Air and Water with Fertility. (Silver)
- Sun: Father and Male oriented. Best of Earth and Fire with Strength. (Gold)
- Stars: Universal Energy. Very Pure. For use in Lilly-white actions. (Platinum)
First, visualize the element which best corresponds with what you want to use the energy for. If you are simply re-energizing yourself, see all seven. Imagine a line, or straw or something similar connecting the heart of that element to your heart chakra. Visualize the energy, the same color as the element it is coming from, flowing down that conduit into you. Feel the energy and see your aura begin to pulse with that color. When you feel you have enough energy, close the conduit, sever the tie and thank that element for it’s gift.
Please note that you do not have to have that element present to be able to do this.
When drawing on multiple sources at once, most of the bad influences or disadvantages are canceled and the energy moves to the most advantageous end, but if the effects are complementary (i.e. Water and Earth) then the effects are compounded. In the above example, once the energy was moving, it would take an Act of God to stop it [but it would take nearly a similar act to get it moving in the first place].
Grounding excess energy, for example when you are nervous, is a relatively dimple process. Envision the excess energy flowing out of your body and into an inanimate object. This is a good way to energize a power sink or your athame. Make sure it is a non-living thing, because sending energy into a living being can cause a great deal of harm, if they are not ready for it.
It is acceptable to send energy into a person if they are using it for a spell, healing, or other purpose where their personal energies would be insufficient for the task at hand. But they still have to ask.
If you give contaminated energy (either positive or negative) to as snake, the snake will act as a filter. It will cleanse the energy of the unwanted influence and return raw energy with, NO characteristics. [This is why you see snakes being used as symbols of healing in every culture in the world.]
The only time it is permissible to draw power from a person or animal without their consent is in an attempt to calm them and prevent them from harming themselves or others. It is also permitted during healing if you wish to get rid of contaminated energy that is causing the sickness.
If you should be lucky enough to have a familiar, by the bond that has been created, it has given it’s consent to give you energy when you have need of it. Don’t drain it to death, however. They are very hard to come by.
I know that this is not the “traditional” layout for the elements. Here is my justification for laying them out this way, taken from my class in Pagan Basics on the Altar Basics:
“I use the elements in the directions that I use them in is kind of easy, it’s the nature of the element in reality. If you think of Air, it is usually associated with the North in many legends and stories. As such, if you think of a Compass Rose, and place Air there, the logical place to put Earth is beneath it. Earth supports Air. Air rests on Earth. Air is not under the Earth, but on it. Air cannot mix with the Earth, and if it were not for Earth, Air would not be (see plants and giving off oxygen) and without Air, the Earth would not be fertile.
The same holds true for the Water-Fire arguments. Water can mix with Air, and Water rests on the Earth, it is between them. Fire is fed by Air and by the combustibles of the Earth. Fire creates Air, and fertilizes the Earth, Water can make Air (in the form of Water vapor) and it nourishes the Earth, and so on. It’s Hobson’s choice as to which direction specifically you place the Fire and Water on the Rose. I put them where I did due to the life cycle when I made this directional association.
Air is the realm of the spirit. It is where you are before you are born. Once in a body, you come out of the Waters of Life, or the amniotic fluid of your mother. As you grow, you become involved in the Earth and the prosperity and fertility of your life. As you age, you become knowledgeable and older, and your body begins to burn out. Like the canvas-cleaning fire of another post. Once dead, you return to the realm of the Air, to start over.”
I have read in many places that the individual practitioner should arrange the elements the way that they are comfortable in arranging them. That way, the individual has the control over where they are, based on what feels right to them. If you want Fire in the North, and it works for you, go for it. There is nothing stopping you from doing so. But try many different ways of doing things, simply so that you get a variety.
I had one student in Canada who used my associations and they worked for her simply because Air came from the North and was cold, there was a lot of Water to her East, to the South of her was the bulk of the North American Continent, and to her West the sun set. But those were her reasonings, and that’s good.
The only wrong way to arrange the elements is if it feels wrong to you as you practice it. That’s all.
To find Mike Nichols’ arguments on how the elements should be arranged, click on the button that says “Nichols” and select the proper article from the list that is presented. It’s a really good article. There are some powerful arguments for placing Air in the North, Earth in the East, Fire in the South, and Water in the West.
Now, for those who have not encountered this before, the classical arrangements for the elements are Earth in the North (it’s a place that is cold and full of caves and such), Air in the East, Fire in the South (where the greatest heat is) and Water in the West.
Stars light your path.