Exercises and Techniques.
Following are short section on various exercises and procedures which are vital to your growth in Wicca, magic and knowing yourself and body in both mundane and spiritual forms. Such activities, which consume no more than a few minutes a day, should be underestimated. They’re the building blocks upon which fluency in ritual and life will be gained. Making them a apart of you everyday life allows you to grow each and every day.
You may want to keep record of each exercise you do, recording what happens, how you feel, maybe even moon phases and dates/season to see if you are effected by different parts of the moon’s cycle. This is often called a Mirror Book in Wicca, but you may call it anything you like. ‘Journal’ is fine. Recording your results helps you keep focus and makes it easy to see your progress as you get better at each technique.
Breathing is usually an unconscious act which we perform continuously throughout our lives. Breathing techniques are used to relax the body and mind ready for other work, be it meditation, visualization or ritual to greet the Divine. It helps us shift and focus our mind into a particular point.
Assume a comfortable position, either sitting or laying (or standing if the situation calls for it). Relax you body slightly. Inhale through your nose to a slow count of whatever is comfortable (4 or 5 is usually a good starting number) Remember to allow the air to fill your diaphragm as well as your lungs. Retain the air for a moment before exhaling to the same, slow count.
Repeat this several times, gradually slowing the breath, lengthening the count or pace you are counting at. Never hold a breath past the level of comfort. The inhalation, retaining and exhalation should be controlled, calm and free of tension.
Concentrate on you breathing process while doing this. As you inhale, breathe in cleansing energy (white/gold light) with the oxygen (visualization). In exhaling, breathe out all impurities (black smoke) with the oxygen (visualization).
Practice this exercise every day and soon you will see that your lungs can retain a lot more air than they could in the beginning.
Meditation is an important art for total relaxation. Too few of us find a moment of freedom from tension and worries, so meditation is a welcome relief from the stress of mundane life. Meditation also usually precedes any magical act or rite of worship, not only in Wicca. In Wicca we use meditation as not only a time of distress and healing, but also as a tool to help us focus our psychic awareness to commune with the God and Goddess.
Sitting is the ideal position for meditation, especially for those of us who tend to fall asleep during this practice. Sit in a comfortable chair, upright and not sloughing so that you may take easy deep breaths. Your chin should be parallel with the floor, feet firmly on the floor and you palms facing up from a rested position in your lap, finger/hands relaxed.
Begin your deep breathing exercises. Once you are relaxed, visualize the multitude of tensions and worries of your everyday life existing in your body with your breath. Relax into the chair.
Now open your consciousness. Allow you conscious mind to be receptive and alert. Commune and talk with deity, toss about symbols in your mind or maybe you’d wish to chant a mantra or affirmation. Chants are excellent in altering your state of consciousness to be receptive to things less dense.
Select a time when you will not be disturbed, and make sure light is subdued. Candlelight is perfect. If you would like incense, make sure it isn’t burning close to you or too heavy as it may make it hard for you to continue deep breathing through you meditation.
After you’ve finished meditating, record all thoughts, feelings, images in you journal.
This is the most basic, yet advanced part of magic and meditation in Wicca. We raise energy in out body and control it via visualization. Visualization is the act of seeing an image with the minds eyes, not you physical ones.
In magic, we direct and visualize energy, build and raise it, then release it along with and intent for it to accomplish – to bring our desire into manifestation.
Exercise One: Sit or lay comfortably with you eyes shut. Relax you body. Breathe deeply and still you mind. Pictures will continue to pop into your head. Choose one of them and focus on it. Keep all your thoughts on this one picture. Once you can do this and retain the image for a solid few minutes you can move to the next exercise.
Exercise Two: Decide upon an image and retain it within your minds eye. You might wish to have it physically present and study it first, memorize the details, texture, color, scent, every detail. You might choose a 3D shape like a pyramid, or perhaps something more complex like a image of a God or Goddess you relate with.
After studying it, close you eyes and recall the details of the image with your minds eye. Don’t look at the object again with your eyes, just use your mind to see it in front of you. When you can hold the image perfectly for 5 minutes, move on.
Exercise Three: This is more difficult, and is truly magical in nature. Visualize something, anything, but preferably something you have never seen. For instance, let’s image a vegetable from Jupiter. It’s purple, square, sprouting little green hairs and yellow spots all over it. This is just an example, of course.
Close you’re eyes and see – really see this vegetable from Jupiter in your mind. Make this imaginary vegetable real, see the details you have created. Turn it over in your mind to see it from all angles. Then let it vanish. When you can hold such a self-created image for five minutes or more, move on to the next exercise.
Exercise Four: This is the most difficult of the lot. Hold a self-created image in your mind – with your eyes open. Work at keeping it visible, real, a palpable thing. State at a wall, the sky, but see the vegetable there. Make it so you can touch it. Try having the vegetable resting on a table, or you altar if you have one, or on the grass beneath a tree.
If we are to use visualization to create changes in the world, not in the shadowy realm that exists behind our eyelids, we must practice such techniques with our eye open. The true test of visualization lies in our ability to make the visualized object (or structure) real and a part of our world. When you have perfected this exercise, you’re well on the way.
I'll be writing up the Energy Manipulation exercises soon also.