The Elements: A Beginners Guide
Earth, Air, Fire, Water. Since the dawn of time these elements have been the driving force of our world. They have been worshipped, studied, admired, and even feared. What can be more beautiful than a snow capped peak, or a rose petal dancing in the wind? What can be as awe inspiring as a hurricane? Or as feared as a forest fire? In this lesson we will do a dive into these primal forces to help get a better understanding of their uses in magic.
Direction: North, the place of cold | Time of Day: The coldest part of night | Color: Green/Brown | Animal: Bear and Deer | Instrument: Percussion | Moon Phase: Dark Moon | Representation: A bowl of salt or earth | Spells: Abundance, Growth, Money, Stability, Endurance, Home and Hearth, Strength etc.
Earth. The immovable object. Earth has widely been seen as the element of stability. Indeed, what is more stable than a mountain? Unshakable, it is always there, supporting us as we walk, being under our feet and helping us connect to its life force. Considered a gentle element, the element of earth can also cause upheaval in everything it does. While not fast moving or flashy, spells using the element of earth will be slow moving, yet the results will be as permanent as the mountains themselves, and will grow like the plants to become a beautiful new result. From the place of cold and the time of darkness, do not let Earth intimidate you, for she will only seek to make you stronger.
Direction: East, the place of renewal | Time of Day: Dawn, the time of new beginnings | Color: Yellow/White | Animal: Hawk and Birds | Instrument: Woodwind | Moon Phase: First Quarter | Representation: Feathers, Petals, Incense | Spells: Communication, Cleansing, Creativity, Mental, Speed, Travel, Starting something new, Legal Matters, etc.
Air. The heavens caress. Air is one of the easily most volatile elements out there to work with. Who hasn’t been enjoying a nice breeze, then been almost blown away by the gales as they get stronger. Mover of obstacles and removing stagnation, Air has always been a sign dedicated to bringing about change and helping with communication. If you find yourself in a slump, needing some creativity, or wondering if the person you love is thinking of you, Air is the element to help. As a bringer of change and inspiration, it is the element that is also tied with renewal. Quick to action, yet unpredictable in nature, Air spells will make sure the job is done quickly, and will make sure to bring a new change when they are completed. From the place and time of renewal, Air can be chaotic, yet if you embrace her she will help you fly.
Direction: West, the place of peace | Time of Day: Twilight, the time of contemplation | Color: Blue | Animal: Salmon and Fish | Instrument: Strings | Moon Phase: Waning Crescent | Representation: A bowl of water, seashells, rain | Spells: Love, Truth, Harmony, Peace, Psychic Abilities, Change, Emotions, Inward Reflection, Divination, Giving Thanks, Honoring the Dead and Deities, etc.
Water. The ever changing. Water has been instrumental in the survival of everything, indeed nothing can live without water. From the dawn of time water has long been associated with being the element of care, the element of who we are and our deepest secrets. Water exists in all of us, it fills our blood and connects every living thing on this planet together. But water can also be violent, tumbling roaring, becoming hurricanes and typhoons, just like people. Water is a reflection of who we are, who we want to be, even reflecting our inner emotions. It is unforgiving with its reflection of us, yet never judges. They say a persons heart is as deep as an ocean, and they are not wrong, for it would take an entire ocean of memories and experiences to make us who we are. Water spells will probe to the deepest layer of the issue, bringing to the surface everything about the issue, and will remind you that there will always be calm after a storm. Water can be cold, yet if you embrace her, she will surround you with all the beauty in the world.
Direction: South, the place of heat | Time of Day: The hottest part of the day | Color: Red | Animal: Salamander and Lizards | Instrument: Brass | Moon Phase: Full Moon | Representation: Candle, Wand, Athame | Spells: Passion, Romance, Prophecy, Destruction, Banishing, Endings, Energy, Awareness, Illumination, Healing, Inspiration, Victory, Rage, etc.
Fire. The one that burns. Fire is easily the most difficult element to work with, have it too low and it only sizzles, too hot and it burns. Since the dawn of man Fire has helped keep the shadows at bay, keeping us safe through the night. We light candles for the ones we love, we use heat to help our aches and pains, we use fire to cook with and to warm our homes during the cold winter months. Fire is the spark inside of us, it is the feeling of your first kiss, of getting that promotion, of finishing that painting. It is the passion that comes to light when we do something we love. It can also burn though, leading to anger and rage, thoughts of destruction and burning the world around us. Fire is tricky, yet without it, the world would be a cold and barren place, for Fire brings the light to this world. Fire spells will work quickly, burning through the darkness to illuminate everything around a situation and making sure that when it is done, there is nothing left to question, no matter the results. In the innermost part of your soul, embrace Fire, and she will bring light to your world.
Spirit and Void
Direction: Above and Below | Time of Day: All and None | Color: White, Purple, and Black | Animal: All of them | Instrument: Vocals | Moon Phase: None, they are represented by the stars | Representation: Pentagram/Pentacle, Song, Touch, Smell, Taste | Spells: All and None
Spirit. The Void. The place of inbetweens and existences between what we know and what we do not. The element of Spirit/Void is not one I was going to include on this list initially, as it is a concept more so for theology versus practical application, yet the more I thought about it, the more it makes sense. For Spirit and Void exists everywhere and nowhere. It is found in the spaces between. It is everything and nothing at the same time. It is the primordial element that created everything, and is the end of everything as well. Much of witchcraft is focused on the wheel shape, if you look at it in that shape, the other elements are the supports, and the Spirit is the wheel itself. It is what makes up the heavens and exists in between the stars. It is the darkness where we go to hide, and also the helping hand that shows us the way. It is time, it is space, it is everything. Spirit and Void is the subconscious, it is an entity of its own, it is our fears and our joy. It is our inspiration and our blocks, it is every living thing on this planet. We are the final element. We are spirit and void. When the big bang happened, and the cosmos came into existence, all of those stars spewed out dust. Those pieces of dust came together to become the planets, and the waters, and the climate, and the fire. It came together to form us. We are all made of stardust. We are all spirit. We are all void. We can do anything.