A blending of creativity, calligraphy, ritualistic magic, a dash of runes, and maybe some Hermetics magic results in a specialized form of hieroglyph writing, a Sigil. Learn how you can use these symbols to enhance your spiritual practice.
What is a Sigil?
Let’s break down the terms of Sigil Magick to make them easier to understand. A Sigil is a graphic design that is used in magic. It is a device to direct intent. There isn’t a single unified system for these scripts. However, they can and often use symbols that come from other systems.
You are more familiar with these symbols that you think. Apart from magic, we find these types of symbols in the business world in the form of corporate logos. These are a symbol of company values and goals. You’ll never look at the outline of apple the same way because of its association with the company by the same name. The transition from a corporate logo to a symbol of magic depends on the user.
Using a Sigil is a Focal Point
Think of the Sigil as a focal point for directing intention and energy. Using a symbol for directing energy is also a common technique. Take the healing system Reiki for instance.
Reiki uses a series of unique pictograms to focus energy on healing. These designs are not part of the formal Japanese writing scripts. Although they use the same general form as Japanese Kana.
Japanese calligraphy is an artistic writing form it comes from simplified Chinese characters adopted to form a phonetic script. There are six different kinds of Chinese characters, known as 六书 (liù shū). There are three main categories of these characters: pictographs, ideographs, and determinative-phonetics. Therefore, it is common for people to use similar pictographs in the design of Sigil.
So, essentially, this means that Rikei is a system of sigil magick. Reiki practitioners are familiar with the symbol below. “Cho Ko Rei” is the first symbol most people learn. It is a symbol used in gathering and directing healing energy Training in Reiki the healing system includes an initiation ceremony. This is ceremony is believed to unlock the power of symbols like this one.
Magik with a K?
The term Magik with a K comes from the practice we know as Witchcraft. This is the common way to refer to ritualistic or ceremonial magic. Some people call it High Magick. When you use any symbol in a ritual it is the use of magic. The use of archaic symbols or objects to project energy is common. This is why the term sigil magick ends with a K.
The Japanese Tea Ceremony is an example of ritualistic Magick, where choreographed movements along with various implements, teacup, teapot, tea, etc. The intention here is to develop “presence”. The implements of ritual are ceremonial objects often charged with various types of energy.
Many people are drawn to the concept of rituals because we are creatures of habit. Rituals are mysterious and some have ancient roots. It doesn’t matter to what belief system you ascribe. You can be an Atheist, Theist, Diest, and still have an interest in or engage in habits associated with magic. The concept of magic permeates our lives. For instance, a rabbit’s foot on a key chain. If you take the time to study other traditions, you will find several similarities between them. The Japanese Tea Ceremony is a ritual.
The practice of Witchcraft has direct ties to older traditions that pre-date written history. Witches have much in common with the practices of ancient cultures. Witchcraft mirrors many of the techniques from ancient Shamanic cultures. Witches individualize their Craftwork much like the ancient traditions of the Crone.
You can find some form of ritualistic magic in almost every branch of organized religion. The cross is a simple but effective type of sigil magik that has been adopted by Christianity. It conveys several levels of meaning depending upon the user.
It’s also important to realize we cast a spiritual shadow wherever we do and whatever we do. Make sure your life is full of meaningful actions, meaningful rituals. Don’t let your life become habitual patterns without meaning.
This is a form of ritualistic magik which uses symbols to focus a magical working. It is a way to channel intent and personal emotion into energy. The power of the written word or symbol (1) is just one element of ritualistic magick.
It is common to find a combination of ancient writing systems and graphics with these symbols. These types of graphic symbols are prominent in ancient and contemporary pagan art from Celtic designs to Wiccan inscriptions. They are also used by word-of-faith and law of attraction practitioners. Seasoned magical practitioners caution against their use in performing curses because the law of karma will bring back anything evil ten-fold.
Ritualistic magik uses processes or formulas to produce outcomes. Using the circle in a seating arrangement is one the transcends many traditions. Drawing a Sigil while in a circle with other practitioners magnifies the energy. Many traditions perform ceremonies to celebrate the seasons, the cycles of the sun and the moon, etc. Examples of paradigms that practice this include Catholicism and Free-Masonry. Whether they admit it or not they are practicing ritualistic magick.
Some people believe that sigil magik is part of the lost knowledge of Hermetics. Since this often believed to be the source of true alchemy and magic they may have a point. There certainly are connections to the use of esoteric energy here. Perhaps Reiki is one proof of the existence of this sacred knowledge.
Creating A Sigil
Anyone can create a sigil. Many people create when practicing automatic writing techniques. You can follow the process for automatic writing and set your intention to create a symbol that points toward any desired goal.
Some people like to use a sigil when they practice affirmations. And, you can create a sigil that reminds you of any affirmation routine. These can help reprogram your self-talk.
Just remember, ritualistic magic is powerful. Make sure your goal is positive and does not cause harm to anyone or anything.
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(1) Buckland’s Complete Book of Witchcraft
(2) Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia