This toolkit is a starting point for magickal activism in these challenging times. It is an evolving document, co-created in a consensus decision-making process by members of the Reclaiming Tradition, an international community working to unify spirit and politics. We are critical of the people and systems of oppression that create our dominant culture and aim to liberate ourselves from the colonial mindset we’ve inherited.
This toolkit will adapt to upcoming political, social, and environmental issues as they present themselves. The current version lays a foundation for the work ahead. Regardless of your years of study or experience, we recommend starting (or renewing) your protection/shielding now. Developing a relationship with the recommended deities and practicing the sigil visualization will also prepare you for the magickal work in the coming weeks, months, and years. More specific instructions (rituals, spellwork, etc.) will be forthcoming.
The magick we weave contributes to a global movement of witches, Pagans, and occultists committed to freedom and justice in all its forms. We recognize that the earth is alive as we are alive, and animism is an antidote to apathy. So, don’t forget to get outside and connect with nature – it will strengthen both your magick and activism.
We offer thanks to the Ancient Ones, the Mighty Dead of the Craft, and the descendants yet to come.
PROTECTION / SHIELDING
When doing any witchcraft, magickal, or occult work it is important to practice grounding, warding, shielding, and/or protection. This will help you maintain your balance when dealing with people and systems that use a power-over method of control (ex. white supremacists, heterosexists, patriarchal capitalism, etc.). This includes the miasma created by news reports and social media ‘memes’ that highlight political figures and the shocking decay of our society and government.Shielding can protect you from generating fear inside yourself, feeding the instigators of the fear, and undermining your magick. It can also help you avoid a rebounding effect or attack from within when your emotions get stirred up.
Protections can include the Tree of Life grounding, Blue Feri Fire meditation, the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram, Iron & or Pearl Pentacle, cleansing your aura/energy body, and casting a circle while visualizing pentagrams, roses, or protective symbols surrounding you. An Internet search will provide descriptions and instructions for these exercises, and here are guided meditations for grounding and shielding that you can try: http://www.sacredplanthealing.com/resources/practices/
WORKING WITH DEITIES
Although you may already work with Gods, Goddesses, guides or spiritual allies, please consider cultivating a relationship with:
Lady Liberty stands above New York Harbor and welcomes all, especially in all our diversity, proclaiming: ‘We are all in this together’. She is a robed female figure representing Libertas, the Roman goddess of Freedom worshipped widely in ancient Rome, especially among emancipated slaves. She holds a torch and a tabula ansata (a tablet evoking the law) upon which is inscribed the date of the American Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776. She teaches us about the complexities of the world-changing work we do to create a just, sustainable planet.
Lady Liberty is a powerful ally to work with. Her energy will feed your work and spread life-affirming magic in the world. Her large, colossal energy is way beyond our ability to hold or contain, although you might be able to induce that energy in yourself or a group. Invoke Lady Liberty’s energy to flow via the 7 rays of her diadem or crown which form a halo or aureole. The 7 rays evoke the sun, the seven seas, and the seven continents, representing another means, besides the torch, whereby Liberty enlightens the world. Imagine her holding a torch surrounded by a lantern of mirrors directing the light of the flame like a lighthouse, revealing truth and igniting passion and determination in all who work for freedom, justice, and liberty for all.
Hermes (Roman name: Mercury) is the Greek messenger of the Gods, communications, travel, cunning, luck, eloquence, and athleticism. A guide of souls to the Underworld, Hermes is also the consummate magic wielder and… a trickster. Hermes is a powerful ally to work with when you need technology and telecommunications to bend to your will and when you need the way to be open. Invoke Hermes when you need to effectively and powerfully communicate, when you need to deeply listen and speak, and when you need to perceive or ascertain the truth.
Considered a friendly God by the Greeks, call on Hermes (“Hail Hermes!”) when you need a friend, some good luck, or a dose of wit and cleverness. With wings on his shoes and a wide-brimmed hat, Hermes holds the Caduceus in his hand (rod with two snakes intertwining). Cultivate his qualities of courage, dedication, humor, and wisdom when you desire transformation or to turn things upside down.
VISUALIZATION / JOURNEY WORK / TRANCE
Here are some ways to connect with Lady Liberty:
+ Create an altar to Lady Liberty that includes her picture, statue, offerings, etc.
In a meditation space, imagine yourself in a safe, natural environment or Place of
Power. As you explore the space, notice a path leading away, and follow it in search
of the sigil (see below). Follow the sigil until it takes you to Lady Liberty.
+ At her Torch, ground, breathe, and open yourself. Fill your energetic body with
Earth energy. Allow your field to be wider and wider, taller and taller. Feel it blossom
into a crown at your head. Fill up yourself with Lady Liberty’s healing, bright light.
+ You can also ask for Lady Liberty’s assistance to see the world you want to create
(near term or more distant). What does it look like? Who is there, what are they
doing? What grows there, etc.? With that image in mind, who do you need to be in
this new world? What action(s) will you take to manifest this state of being and
Here are some ways to connect with Hermes:
+ Hermes’ element is Air, so any work with this element can be an invocation to/of
+ Create an altar to Hermes that includes his picture, statue, offerings, etc.
+ Include the astrological symbol for Mercury and visualize it daily to connect with
+ Repeat the mantra “Io Herm, Io Herm, Io Herm, Io Herm” in groupings of four
(Herme’s number) [pronounced “ee-oh herm”]
+ Read aloud The Mystical Hymns of Orpheus: The Invocations used in the
Eleusinian Mysteries, by Thomas Taylor (page 36): http://bit.ly/2iFJ8ft
If you do not feel comfortable doing trance visualization on your own, try pre-recording it yourself for listening while in meditation, or use a Shamanic journeying drumbeat while you visualize/trance with Lady Liberty. Here are some resources:
+ “Journey to the Heart of the World” with Sandra Ingerman (brief intro to Shamanic
journeying, 8 min drum beat): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tQDK9pLC1Zk
+ Michael Harner: Shamanic Journey – 15 minutes solo drumming:
A sigil is a symbol that has magickal power. Our sigil for Lady Liberty and all she represents has the open book or tablet (tabula ansata) with the light of truth shining brightly from its pages, illuminating her 7-rayed diadem, or crown.
How to use it:
- When you meditate, focus on the sigil to strengthen your connection to Lady Liberty. You can also look for the sigil when you are doing trance work or journey work and see where it takes you.
- It can be scribbled quickly in a magickal working or spell and also on sidewalks.
- Share the sigil on social media and make your own stickers, stencils, t-shirts, etc. Here are some DIY and merchandise resources; we have provided two versions of the sigil for you to work with:
ELEMENTAL WORK ~ WATER
- Mindfully move water through you to help you ground. Drink magickally charged
rose water or rose tea to allow truth and justice flow through you. It’s okay to “be
pissed” not passive.
- In solidarity with the Water Protectors at Standing Rock, breathe into the meditation
that water is life (and remember that Lady Liberty is surrounded by water).
BUILDING EMOTIONAL MUSCLE
- Build your capacity for emotional muscle during these challenging times. Allow
yourself to be present to the anguish, grief and emotional pain you’re experiencing
and also practice holding onto the beauty of our world.
- To get through grief, stress, and hard times, try tuning into the five senses on a
daily basis. Notice a beautiful smell, sight, sound, touch, and taste.
MAGICKAL TIPS FOR STREET PROTESTS
- Practice shrinking your aura or using an invisibility spell to make yourself less
noticeable. Try the Instant Mashed Potato ~ Invisibility Spell originated by Sequoia
Greenfield: at every potluck, a bland bowl of instant mashed potatoes sits on the
table, which everyone ignores or doesn’t see. Be that bowl of invisible, instant
- Practice your Jedi mind tricks: “These are not the droids you’re looking for”
- Stay hydrated. Always carry water and make sure it’s magickally charged. Wear a
water back pack under your clothing and if you carry a thermos, ginger tea is a good
choice for cold weather.
- Howl like a wolf to reduce effects of LRAD (Long Range Acoustic Device) sound
sonic weapons, a means of crowd control.
SUGGESTED READINGS / RESOURCES
- The Spiral Dance, by Starhawk
- The Magical Battle of Britain, by Dion Fortune, edited by Gareth Knight
- Beautiful Trouble, assembled by Andrew Boyd with Dave Oswald Mitchell
- Structure of a Ritual by Vibra Willow: standard ritual structure for those unfamiliar
with Reclaiming-style magick
- Pagan Anarchism, by Christopher Scott Thompson
- Don’t Think of an Elephant, by George Lakoff
- Chakra & Aura Healing
- Supporting Standing Rock and Confronting What It Means Living On Stolen Land,
an article by Berkley Carmine and Liza Minno, confronting the fundamental questions
of what it means to live on stolen land and how to transform colonial relations in a
way that creates a viable and just future for all communities and the planet:
ABOUT THE RECLAIMING TRADITION
Reclaiming’s vision is rooted in the religion and magic of the Goddess, the Immanent Life Force. We see our work as teaching and making magic: the art of empowering ourselves and each other. We use the skills we learn to deepen our strength, both as individuals and as community, to voice our concerns about the world in which we live, and to bring to birth a vision of a new culture.