Working with the elements
Four is the number of the physical universe.
Both the square and the cross are symbols of material life in the three-dimensional world. The horizontal line of the cross symbolizes time, and the vertical one depicts space.
The corners of the square and the ends of the cross form the four different faces of the Divine, or the four basic energies this universe is built of. These basic principles are named the elements.
Traditionally the four elements are called Fire, Earth, Water and Air. These are symbolical, not literal names for the various energies.
To many natural methods of healing, magick and astrology the idea of the elements forms a practical, workable system and thoughtmodel. In a nature based life-philosophy it seems quite logical to work with the different characteristics of the four winds, the four directions, the four seasons, the four tastes, or the four stages of life (baby, childhood, adultery, and old age).
Let’s take a look at the wind: northern wind is cold and dry (Earth), southern wind is warm and dry (Fire), eastern wind is cold and moist (Water), and western wind is warm and moist (Air). People react differently on the various winds and temperatures.
Ancient naturopathy developed the system of the temperaments, in which humans are divided in four groups, according to their way of reacting physically and emotionally, each with their own tailored therapies.
Choleric or Fire persons are hot-tempered, easily offended, enthusiastic, passionate, creative, impatient, courageous, adventurous, impulsive, daring and active. They like to take initiative and try out something new. They make good sportsmen, leaders and inspiring businessmen.
Astrological Fire signs are Aries, Leo and Sagittarius.
Fire complaints are fever, inflammations, high bloodpressure or an over-active digestion because of eating too hasty or too spicy. Sick Fire people need to cool and calm down. Cold showers are often helpful.
Magickal colors for Fire are red and orange.
Call forth elemental Fire in your magick or visualizations when you need success, optimism, courage, energy, great love, an improved sexlife, a new job or other new undertaking, greater authority or more self-consciousness.
Melancholic or Earth persons act slow and thorough, they are realistic, practical, sober, concrete, orderly, materialistic, critical, punctual, responsible and dutiful. They tend to be gloomy. They are great organizers, reliable partners, they can endure a lot and will not easily give up a certain task.
Astrological Earth signs are Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn.
Earth complaints are stiffness, frozen body parts, constipation, depression and problems with bones and joints. Warm water is often healing, as is taking clay internally. Gardening or mountain walking can be very meditative for Earthy people.
Magickal colors for Earth are dark green, black and brown.
Call forth elemental Earth for grounding, stability, healing, finding lost objects, securing a venture or relationship, money, promotion or other forms of progress, family matters, constructions and your home.
Flegmatic or Water people are sensitive, emotional, intuitive, paranormal, artistic, romantic, passive, magnetic, soft and kind, caring and compassionate. They are dreamy and have a vivid imagination. Watery people are the nurses, healers, intuitive counselers, artists and poets among us.
Water signs are Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces.
They often fall ill because of crossing their boundaries; therefore they get too many impressions of others, or their great helpfulness drains them. These liquid signs have difficulty with giving form to something; physically this can work out in profuse bleedings, longlasting diarrhoa, or unexplicable complaints.
For their healing it is really important to reserve time and space for themselves, for instance meditation or painting.
Magickal Water colors are blue of course, and soft pastel and transparent colors.
Call forth elemental Water if you do magick for divination, unconditional love, energy healing, dreamwork, spirituality, soft relationships with children and friends, artistic inspiration and negotiation with others.
Sanguinic or Air people are quick, flexible, moveable, changeable, communicative, hasty, playful, nervous, easily interacting, mentally quick and strong, rational and objective. They love traveling, new people, new places, new contacts. They make good writers, talkers, traders, politicians and inventers.
Air signs are Gemini, Libra and Aquarius.
Air complaints are problems with the respiratory system, the circulation, and nervous complaints. Fresh air, a stay in the woods or the mountains, enjoying relaxing contacts with friends instead of stressy business contacts, are all healing.
The traditional magickal Air color is yellow, the color of Mercury, the messenger of the gods. But light blue is great too of course.
Call forth elemental Air to improve contacts, save traveling, successful trading or otherwise selling things, teaching, learning,mental activity and writing.
More and more people in the occult community add a fifth element: Spirit, representing the soul or the spiritualized and transformed human being through purification. Astrology and naturopathy still work with the four traditional elements.
Elemental Spirit is found in the center of the cross and the square, or on the top of the upward pentagram.
It’s magickal colors are white and violet.
Call forth elemental Spirit for divination, transformation, purification of energies, meditation and channeling.
You can strengthen the force of a certain element in yourself by working with the energies it represents. Go to the sea to let your emotions flow, wear red clothes in a daring mood, dig in the garden if you need to go back to base, and learn something new to make new contacts.
Magickally the elemental energies can be evoked by addressing each element individually in a prayer or invocation. You may also call all energies forth as follows: sit in a circle and chant all at the same time “Earth, Earth, Earth – Air, Air, Air – Fire, Fire, Fire – Water, Water, Water – Spirit, Spirit, Spirit.” Continue for several minutes. You will feel a powerful energy building up. I’ve worked with this in reiki healings. At the end of the session thank the energies and send them forth.
Suggested News Resources
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Suggested Web Resources
- Spirit Alchemy: Elemental Primer: Stuck with an Element?
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- The Four elements - The Dance
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- Working with the Elements - AzothAlchemy.org
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- The Elements Of Magick - The Elements - The White Goddess
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- The 4 Elements of Physical Energy and How to Master Them
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