Ancients divided the world into four basic principles or *elements* earth,
water, fire, and air. That viewpoint has mostly changed with advances of
science, but the four elements are still accepted in magick, for they are more
closely linked with emotions, the human psyche, and with nature than are modern
explanations of the world. These *magical elements* are also of some importance
in astrology. Many occultists think of the magical elements as forces, or as
*qualities* of energy; especially within the astral world. Each element has a
symbol and color. (Common symbols are -- fire: a triangle pointing up; air: a
triangle pointing up and with a horizontal line through the middle of it; water:
a triangle pointing down; earth: a triangle pointing down and with a horizontal
line through the middle of it.) Colors of the elements are -- earth: brown and
green; water: blue; fire: red; air: yellow... The Eastern tattvic system uses
different symbols and colors. (The tattvic symbols are briefly described later
on in this course.) The elements are often used in magick ritual.
Magick sees relationships between things. These relationships are called
'correspondences'. Although magical correspondences are not literally equal to
one another, you can think of them that way (such as gold equals sun). Tables of
these relationships, called 'Correspondence Tables', are available (an important
one is Crowley's '777'). Thus one thing or symbol can be used to suggest
another. This is important in magick, for the magician may surround himself with
as many appropriate correspondences as he can to vividly affect the senses; thus
making his magical contact with the inner planes more lucid.
The magical elements have correspondences with the tarot cards as the four
suits. The four quarters (directions of the universe as used in magick ritual)
and the Archangels also correspond with these same elements.
Astrological signs also correspond with the elements. Taurus, Virgo, and
Capricorn are earth signs. Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces are water signs. Aries,
Leo and Sagittarius are fire signs. Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius are air signs.
The magical elements are said to be peopled by spirits and mythological entities
called elementals or nature spirits. These are grouped into four main
Elementals are usually only visible to those with clairvoyant sight and are more
likely to be seen at night in the mountains or country away from cities --
especially if you are tired or sleepy. Although elementals exist naturally, it
is also possible to create one, which will exist for a limited time -- no
elemental has immortality. A created elemental is called an 'artificial
To the Ancients, elementals were the physical explanation of the universe.
However, some contemporary occultists see them only as symbols for forces and
otherwise not 'real' at all. Another word sometimes used for elemental is
'familiar' (usually in medieval witchcraft); the term is ambiguous, as it might
merely be an ordinary household pet such as a dog or cat.
Chinese philosophy and acupuncture talk of yin yang. This is the idea of
polarity, or opposite pairs, as shown:
The list could go on. In Chinese literature it is quite long. Some occultists
suggest everything can be similarly arranged into related opposite pairs.
Here is a simple magical technique you may wish to try. It is a variation of
affirmation, which was discussed in an earlier lesson...To help you to achieve
your goal (magical or otherwise), find a word or short phase which sums up what
it is that you want to accomplish. Write the word (or phrase) down 1times each
day until you achieve success.
© 1988 Phil Hansford. This article is licensed for free non-commercial
distribution only. Coding and format by Herne of The Celtic Connection,
If this document is used in its current format, credit and a link for the effort
and work involved is appreciated.