Jump to content
Galaemar Laerareon

Welcome Guest!

Welcome to UK Pagan; The Valley

Like most online communities we require you to register for an account before we give you access to read and post.

Only a small number of our forum areas can be read without registering for an account.

Please consider supporting us to help keep our Website and Facebook groups online. Become a Patron!

The Elements


Guest greenman-ISG
 Share

Recommended Posts

i was doing a little bit of homework on circle casting, when i stumbled upon something that confused me. :rolleyes:

when circle casting i have read of setting out the corners in the circle, with one way being to mark out the four elements. one reference i read may have said earth, air, fire and water, the other might say earth, fire, air and water, and i am sure there are others that i cant remember that were in another order.

 

so, what i am trying to find out, is there a 'correct' order, and if you are a practitioner of this kind of work, what order do you place them in? :lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Please consider supporting us to help keep our Website and Facebook groups online.

I don't do ritual much, but on the odd occasion when I do I go with what makes sense to me:

 

Air to North as it's above

Earth to south as it's below

Water to West as that's the direction of the Atlantic

Fire to East as the sun rises there

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd go with whatever feels *right* to you. I doubt it matters other than for that really as with anything else.

 

Personally (although I've never used it with a specific purpose in mind) I think of it as:

 

Earth; North - because I feel most strongly connected to both of these

Air; East - new day, new breath type thing

Fire; South - being in the Northern Hemisphere things get hotter if I head that way

Water; North West - might be WNW, but no idea. I don't feel very happy if it's at the perfect 270* for some reason. Not too sure why, not in a "this was left over" thing as it doesn't feel right in any other direction..

 

And then on top of that I'm always pretty conscious of the idea that

Life; under my feet (so preferably me not standing 20storeys up in the air)/ the centre of the compass.

 

So as in my "inner compass" thing is lying flat out on the Earth sort of parallel. In contrast to Free's which would appear to be perpindicular re. the above/ below thing.

 

I also went through a phase of one point of being aware of what the mixes equalled in terms of how nature shows her/itself (I'm not personally happy with either of those... I wish there was a thingy in English for "being of unspecific gender") with them. e.g. water and earth being a mudslide, fire and earth being magma. Doesn't mean very much to me now, other than being a backing thing/ where I've come from in my journey thingy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't cast circles much at mo but when I do:

 

 

NOrth - earth - place of darkness

East - air - new dawn

South - fire - cos south is warm!!

West - water - atlantic!!

 

This is how I was trained in OBOD and it just works for me. I use things I associate with each element mentally as I cast - the bear for NOrth, Hawk east, Stag south, salmon west. Again OBOD in origin

 

I also place the Ancestors at NW - represents Samhain

 

But this is fluid!! Do what's right for you!!

 

Ed

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some information on the elements in the Western tradition - The Western Four Element System

 

I tend to use the usual Druidic system which takes a north european point of view:

 

North - Earth (cold & moist)

East - Air (cold & dry)

South - Fire (hot & dry)

West - Water (hot & moist)

 

But I have on occasions used the classical system using a mediterranean point of view:

 

North - Water (cold & moist)

East - Air (hot & moist)

South - Fire (hot & dry)

West - Earth (cold & dry)

 

depending on the system I am using and my requirements within the ritual. In the end you have to work out your own system, symbolism can be almost universal but if it does not fit in with your own views then the power of the symbol is lost.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I struggled with this some years ago, also with the association of colours with directions. Then I discovered that it depends on the tradition, and some traditions are incompatible with each other. If you look at North American Indians for example, they all have their own distinct picture that they work with.

 

So I'd say, make up your own so that it has significance for you.

 

Unless you are joining a group, in which case, join one before you start, because it's highly confusing to have one way in your head and then be directed to see it differently within the group.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use the north east south west, earth air fire water because that's how I first saw it written down, so it's stuck. Like always calling my primary school teachers Sir, even now! Nothing very romantic about it I'm afraid.

 

Like Julai said though, I have a problem with my colour associations. Earth - green (fair enough), Air - blue (colour of the sky...where air is...), south -fire (a nice hot colour) water - blu....oh wait, I've done blue, well, yellow I guess as that's what most resources say...nah that doesn't make sense....erm..... :o_bounce3:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like Julai said though, I have a problem with my colour associations. Earth - green (fair enough), Air - blue (colour of the sky...where air is...), south -fire (a nice hot colour) water - blu....oh wait, I've done blue, well, yellow I guess as that's what most resources say...nah that doesn't make sense....erm.....  :o_bounce3:

323854[/snapback]

Yellow water always makes me think they mean urine... :lol:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like Julai said though, I have a problem with my colour associations. Earth - green (fair enough), Air - blue (colour of the sky...where air is...), south -fire (a nice hot colour) water - blu....oh wait, I've done blue, well, yellow I guess as that's what most resources say...nah that doesn't make sense....erm.....  :o_bounce3:

323854[/snapback]

Yellow water always makes me think they mean urine... :lol:

323873[/snapback]

 

 

Yes, that would be because I wrote that totally wrong. I meant air in the last bit as people usually say that's yellow and water should have been the original blue! Sorry, my bad! was in a hurry!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

But yellow makes for a nice gradual spectrum ranging from blue in the west, through turquoise, green, olive, yellow, orange, red, purple and back to blue. It is kind of neat but you have to strain it a bit to make air yellow.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

But yellow makes for a nice gradual spectrum ranging from blue in the west, through turquoise, green, olive, yellow, orange, red, purple and back to blue. It is kind of neat but you have to strain it a bit to make air yellow.

323885[/snapback]

 

 

I see what you mean, but that to me is too much of a strain. Blue is the only colour I can put to it with any comfort, so I guess half of my circle will have to be blue! :o_bounce3:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like Julai said though, I have a problem with my colour associations. Earth - green (fair enough), Air - blue (colour of the sky...where air is...), south -fire (a nice hot colour) water - blu....oh wait, I've done blue, well, yellow I guess as that's what most resources say...nah that doesn't make sense....erm.....  :)

323854[/snapback]

Yellow water always makes me think they mean urine... :)

323873[/snapback]

 

 

Yes, that would be because I wrote that totally wrong. I meant air in the last bit as people usually say that's yellow and water should have been the original blue! Sorry, my bad! was in a hurry!

323883[/snapback]

I've heard people say yellow for water, even if you didn't mean to :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some information on the elements in the Western tradition - The Western Four Element System

 

I tend to use the usual Druidic system which takes a north european point of view:

 

North - Earth (cold & moist)

East - Air (cold & dry)

South - Fire (hot & dry)

West - Water (hot & moist)

 

But I have on occasions used the classical system using a mediterranean point of view:

 

North - Water (cold & moist)

East - Air (hot & moist)

South - Fire (hot & dry)

West - Earth (cold & dry)

 

depending on the system I am using and my requirements within the ritual. In the end you have to work out your own system, symbolism can be almost universal but if it does not fit in with your own views then the power of the symbol is lost.

323779[/snapback]

good to see everyones views on this and what works for them. i quite like the following way, dont know why just do :o_roflmao:

 

North - Earth (cold & moist)

East - Air (cold & dry)

South - Fire (hot & dry)

West - Water (hot & moist)

 

i was reading a bit about the celtic path, and this is one of the layouts the site had for the celtic elementals:

 

calas - the earth - midnight

fluidity - the water - sunrise

noon - the air - breath

uvel - the fire - sunset

 

and in the centre:

 

nwyrve - divine spirit - the soul

 

heres a link to the site if anyone wants to have a better nose

 

http://www.paganspath.com/magik/celtic/5elements.htm

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm another one that goes for the seemingly regular view of:

 

North - Earth

East - Air

South - Fire

West - Water

 

Also the colours that I've always felt go with that are:

 

North - Earth - Brown/Black

East - Air - Green/Yellow

South - Fire - Red/Orange/Yellow

West - Water - Blue/Turquoise

 

I even had to have my altar facing north, as it felt wrong facing any other way (was a pig to get it facing that way to... caused a lot of furniture re-arranging! :o_roflmao:)

 

These just feel right for me (no idea why)... I'm glad to see others writing their choices, though, never read about the med's way of doing things, before... and yours makes a lot of sense, too, Free.

 

Thanks :o_kiss:

Edited by araminta
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Topics

  • Posts

    • Moonsmith
      I’ve posted a link (in links) to a BBC article in today’s news just to illustrate a bit of the colourful side of Paganism.  Perhaps it will do something to balance my prosaic take on the subject. i know little of Witchcraft but I enjoyed the article and like her approach.  
    • Ellinas
      👍 It's as good a position as any and better than quite a few.  
    • Stonehugger
      Yes, it was in Nettle's "Who are your deities?" thread. I said "I seem to have become an atheist. That was never my plan, but here I am." Veggiedancer later said it better than me - "I don’t exactly believe in deities as such. I think they come from  our minds. Archetypes, ways of identify or characterising the spirit/ magic/ life or whatever it is we sense around us. Ways our minds try to explain the unexplainable to us???"
    • Moonsmith
      I’m probably second guessing Nettle wrongly but it wasn’t all that long ago that you would have read posts about alters, magic, Shamanism, spells etc. I think it was either Teatimetreat or Drachenfach that had a hex on her handbag and her car.  When the car was stolen it crashed and the thief was caught. I agree and would very much like to see more of the colourful side of Paganism back here.  Quite right Ellinas.  I do not understand how anyone can claim to be Pantheist (or even pantheist) and atheist at the same time even though the most prominent Pantheists do exactly that.  As I’ve said elsewhere: why can’t they call themselves Panists.  The prefix “pan” means everything and everywhere as in “pandemic”.  The god’s name arose from the adjective so it wouldn’t necessarily mean a devotee of Pan. pee ess - it may be worth mentioning that there are a vast number of belief groups under the umbrella word Paganism.  Druids Witches, Polytheist and Shaman are only a small part of what the greater picture of Paganism depicts. Dunno and don’t care are probably the biggest groups.
    • Ellinas
      All the above, plus the impression of a preponderance of atheism is currently, as well as historically, inaccurate.  Certainly, I am no atheist.  I believe MS rejects the term as applicable to himself.  Stonehugger, I think, recently said he had headed in that direction, but I've not seen the other resident atheists for a while. However, our ideas of deity are not the same, necessarily.
×
×
  • Create New...