At the risk of being outed as a complete heretic I thought I would post a few of my raw thoughts on the use of signs, symbols and sacramental action amongst irreligious spirituality seekers and the esoterically minded.
At the moment I am thinking about developing a white rose blessing as a way of symbolizing the presence of Spirit when praying for someone seeking healing or intercession in alt. spirituality contexts. The white rose symbolizes spiritual life in both the Fool card and Death card of the tarot and I think it has great potential as a sacramental symbol when you also consider that the rose cross is a symbol of esoteric Christianity. For non adepts, the Fool is a paradoxical figure who represents unconventional wisdom, spiritual wisdom, and indirectly, the figure of Jesus. Whilst Death points us to the white rose as the way to overcome adversity, it is the Fool who actually brings it to us. I am thinking we could offer people the healing power of the Spirit that comes through the embodiment of wisdom, Jesus.
In fact, this is not unrelated to my previous post on the Hierophant. Hear I was, considering the option of incorporating a hierophant-style triple benediction into healing exercises and that blog post sort of slipped out while I was mulling over it.
How am I approaching this? Well basically in the same way that some have been exploring how divination is related to prophecy, the similarities and the important differences, I’ve been exploring how spells are related to blessings. Beyond the passive reading of the signs of the times I’m wondering how we can actively use signs and appropriate symbology into crisis rites without falling into the Christian shamanism of the more extreme end of the deliverance ministry movement.
But is symbol use ok when blessing and interceding? Before outing me as a heretic consider that clasping the hands, closing the eyes and kneeling is a symbolic act. We often forget that. And in the scriptures we see use of oil (James 5:14-15), spit (Mark 7:31-37, Mark 8:22-26, John 9:6-7), blood and herbs (Exodus 12:12-13, 21-23) and breathing (John 20:21-23) to confer blessing. I’m sure if I keep searching I can find examples of water, fire, incense and salt too, either in the scriptures or in Christian tradition. So I’ve been thinking about this. I’m not sure how pagans would feel about me spitting and blowing garlic breath over them in the manner of Jesus, but what about blessing them in other ways? In what ways might we appropriately appropriate other signs of Spirit and grace from occult symbology when practicing healing and intercession amongst occultists? Methinks a grail blessing may have great potential amongst retro-romanticist Wiccans for instance. But the white rose blessing is what I’m working on first.