Quick & dirty banishing/centering visualization to flush the mental/psychic pipes; can be used several times daily.
Use as a cleanse-all before and/or after:
- meditation, yoga
- exercise & sports
- magick stuff
Get comfortable. Close your eyes. Imagine you are suspended in space. (Whatever comforts you most: outer space, Platonic superspace, hyperspace, hovering phantom-like in your favorite room, pure-black nothingness, some interior space-scape, etc.)
You are going to construct a protective field. Take your time at first; speed will come with practice. This is an excellent building-block exercise for building stamina in focus and concentration. Imagine each line with vividness and purpose. Try to use the full force of your imagination. Aim for full, slow belly breaths.
2. Start the Cross
Imagine a vertical line of intense, soothing white light. It begins from a nadir below your body and passes behind you to a zenith over your head. Trace an ellipse by running this spot up to the top of your head, down your back, under your feet, and up again to the top o f your head.
3. Complete the Cross
Trace another ellipse, perpendicular to the first: it runs from the top of your head down one side, under your feet, and up the other side to the top of your head.
4. Hold it
Take a moment and solidify the image in your head. You are ensconced inside a cross of light.
5. Complete the Field
Next imagine a spot of light about two feet in front of your point of view. With this spot trace a horizontal circle around your head.
When you’re finished your point of view should be in the middle of a protective cage, a kind of three-ringed force field:
With your fortifications now in place, you may clean out your imagination. To do this, turn the line you first visualized into a pillar of white-hot flame and cause the fire to expand outward through your three rings. As it does, cast images of any persistent thoughts or fantasies into the flames and watch them burn until there is nothing left but three glowing white rings.
7. Graceful return
Gradually dim the lights on the rings till you are back in blackness and return to the breath, dropping back to Earth.
Download this exercise as an image: jpg
The above is adapted from an oral transmission of an A.O. Spare ritual as reported by Mace, pp.15-16, Stealing the Fire from Heaven, where it’s offered as a practical procedure in the context of results-based magic(k).
A banishing ritual, when constructed outside of any particular cultural milieu and without the use of alienating symbol systems, is essentially similar in structure to many personal development visualizations and can be easily incorporated into any meditative practice or mind-body hygiene, having the benefits of simplicity and independence from traditional symbologies. Make your own embellishments and refinements as needed.
See also additional notes re: magick & alternative ritual here: http://www.philhine.org.uk/writings/rit_banishintro.html
Full text from Mace:
Sorcery is the art of capturing spirits and training them to work in harness. The arena wherein this ensnarement and instruction take place is within the imagination of the sorcerer, the field whereon conscious intention meets unconscious tendency. But before the wizard can use this field, he needs some way to clear it, both before he begins any operation and after he finishes it. Before he begins he must cut down the stray thoughts, popular songs, and chronic resentments that may intrude upon his work. When he’s finished he must send his spirits back to their own dwellings, for otherwise they might hang around his consciousness and meddle about out of control, eventually bringing about an obsession.
Traditionally sorcerers have cleared their imaginations with banishing rituals, brief ceremonies of encirclement designed to flush out one’s aura with light and guard it from subsequent contamination, at least for a little while. Rosicrucian-type magicians have generally adopted the Pentagram ritual for this, but though it is very effective, it is symbolically dependent upon the Qabalistic system and hence unsuitable for anyone who wants to avoid hanging that Albatross around his neck. In its stead I offer a rite that was given t me by a teacher of my own, Frater O.T.L., who told me it was the invention of the English wizard Austin Osman Spare (1886-1956). During all my subsequent study of Spare, I’ve never seen it in print, but it works and I’ve used it for years with good effect. It also has the advantage of simplicity. Once you know it, you can do it in a few seconds right in your imagination, and there isn’t a single mystic symbol in it.
To begin, close your eyes and imagine a vertical line of white light, one passing from the nadir to the zenith right through the point of view behind your eyes. Next imagine a spot of light about two feet in front of this point of view. With this spot trace a horizontal circle around your head. Then trace an ellipse by running this spot up to the top of your head, down your back, under your feet, and up again to the top of your head. Then trace another ellipse from the top of your head down one side, under your feet, and up the other side to the top of your head. When you’re finished your point of view should be in the middle of a cage that looks like this:
With your fortifications now in place, you may clean out your imagination. To do this turn the line you first visualized into a pillar of fire and cause it to expand outward through your three rings. As it does, cast images of any persistent thoughts or fantasies into the flames and watch them burn until there is nothing left but three glowing white rings.
And that’s all there is to it. Aside from serving to flush out your mind before and after magical operations, banishing is your first defense against obsessive thoughts from within and any kind of psychic attack from the outside. Banishing rituals also have the side benefit of hardening the wizard’s aura, forming a psychic shell that will keep his consciousness together and deflect the piercing intrusions of the external world. By frequent (four or five times a day for the rest of your life) banishing, the wizard will develop an aura so hard that he will be able to drop many of the defensive habits that might have attached themselves to his personal attitude. Banishing is thus an essential tool for the aspiring wizard, and it is vital to make it a habit.