Today’s first evocation took place in the same spot in the woods where I first started the summoning storm, the toad pond. We called it a toad pond because we noticed a large cluster of what might be frog or toad spawn floating in the leaves near the middle of it.
As I entered the forest a robin sang in a tree by the gate. In my connection to the the birds I have come to feel the robin as ‘opener of the ways’ so this seemed appropriate. As I walked into the woods I found my slow walk shifting my consciousness. It was like the opening and banishing rituals performed at the start and close of ceremonial rituals, only instead of going around in circles, it lead a winding serpentine path.
Summoning the spirit of a place should prove one of the easiest forms of evocation, since you don’t need to summon it from anywhere. Its presence can easily seen with eye. You need only summon your own attention to it.
None the less, I placed my pentacle on the tree stump and began my evocation by focusing on the pentacle again. I doubt I was visible from the main footpath, but I found myself imagining what I would say if some passer by should intrude upon the space and ask what I was doing. This lead to me thinking of the pentacle as ‘not an idol’ and me asking the passer-by ‘do I look like I would worship a piece of wood with paint?’ I managed to get out of this by thinking how the pentacle was so much more than its material constituents.
I began to think that on the one hand it represents so many metaphysical concepts,whilst on the other it is just a piece of wood with decorative paint. In this it bridges the worlds and acts as a portal or gate between them, through which contact with daemons can occur.
At this point I was in a kind of trance appreciating the beauty of the place and how slightly surreal my pentacle looked in this setting. A part of me longed for a camera to take a picture. The other was glad to be free from such a distraction. As my trance intensified I found the focus of my vision shifting and the scene I watched began to dance in ebbs and flows.
It danced for what seemed like a couple more minutes before I came to the realisation that it was probably time to raise the spirit. As I imagined the spirit rising up out of the pentacle my eyes moved up in this direction, looking for a spirit to appear. A part of me expected a kind of pariedolia in the natural scenery. At first this prove elusive, where those feet? If so are those arms? Breats? Is that a woman? But no. Then suddenly I realised the form wasn’t humanoid but animal. But it wasn’t a deer. I thought maybe a frog, but then suddenly it hit me, I was looking at a giant cricket!
At first its message was hostile. I heard an angry grunting sound behind me and imagined an angry stag wanting to get to the toad pond for a drink. I imagined it aggressively butting me out of the way. The message seemed clear, I was an intruder here. I nearly decided to up and leave.
Then I thought of the old deamonologists cry “Not in that form!” Realising this as an instruction to change my own focus, I shifted my consciousness to a second pariedolia. This time one that resembled a skinny little man with the head of a stag and a cock the size of his arm. A sort of cross between Cernunnos and Priapus.
“What about you?” I asked, “o you agree with the grasshopper?”
Again I heard the angry grunting sound behind me but this time I turned around to see what was up. Nothing. I could see nowhere behind me that a deer could be hiding. The main hiding place would have placed the deer on the main footpath, where at this time of day many dog walkers strolled.
I turned back to the little horned one. I received his message, “Our fears evaporate when we turn to face them.”
I then became aware of some force of nature reclaiming my pentacle. The price of working with a wooden pentacle outdoors in woodland is that eventually the woodland will reclaim the wood from which it is made. I accepted this price on the condition that nature empowers the magic of the pentacle in the mean time. Anyway, the thought of wanting the pentacle to remain pristine in some museum long after I had died seemed somewhat perverse.
On accepting this price a third pariedolia showed itself to me. This time a serpent emerging from the ground and carrying a woman. Hades and Persephone I realised…