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DISCLAIMER
The methods described in pages are a theoretical discussion ONLY. Methods are discussed in only the broadest terms and I hold no qualifications in the fields discussed.
Because a method is listed here does not indicate that I approve or recommend it. In some cases, I definitely don't!


Virtually all our religions and magical philosophies rely strongly on symbols and icons representing the object of our veneration. The premise is simple: the object represents the real thing: it acts as both a link and a focus of mind. Those little pictograms on your computer are called icons for precisely this reason. This is Sympathetic Magic.

The best known example of Sympathetic Magic is the Voodoo Doll - ironic really, as real Voodoo, or Voudun, has nothing to do with them: it's all a creation of the silver screen. But the principle is sound and used in other magical disciplines (poppets, in hedge-witchcraft). If you wish to cast a spell on a person, you make an effigy of them, and to it you attach samples of hair, or fingernail clippings, or anything else of that person's essence that you can acquire. Between the doll and the intended subject (and this is usually used for beneficial magic; not cursing someone) is established a link or a Sympathy. The better the doll resembles the subject, and the more items of essence are involved, the closer and stronger the Sympathy.

The idea is to use icons and symbols to represent what you want to achieve. There is a gulf of possibilities between casting a spell and the fulfilment of a spell: sympathies narrow the gap: they both help to focus the mind of the practitioner, and form a spiritual link with the intended recipient. The better the representation, the better the link and the focus. Suppose you wished to cast a spell of wealth upon a friend: you could take a crude doll, name it for your friend, and give to it scraps of paper on which you have drawn pound or dollar signs. There's some sympathy there. Or you could use a better doll, use hair or nail clippings, perhaps a scrap of clothing they have recently worn. A prick of blood, voluntarily given? And instead of torn paper, we could use toy money, or even a single real banknote. Now the sympathy is much stronger.

Or you could go for certainty: take the real person and write them a cheque for 1000. That's 100% sympathy, guaranteed to work!

Of course, when it comes to transformation, we don't have the 100% option, but there are lots of sympathies we can draw on. The timing of a spell can be significant. In Wicca, Tuesday represents Mars, who was also the Roman god of horses. We might invoke Mars as a Power, for the same reason, and if a Goddess is needed, Epona, or Rhianon. The spell could be conducted in a paddock or a stable. We could use the afore-mentioned poppet: especially if we fashioned it out of something mutable, like clay, so that we could actually change its shape. Perhaps we would start by surrounding the poppet by your own representations: hair, nails, etc; perhaps a photograph. Then we could symbolically replace each item: a tuft of mane or tail hair; a hoof-clipping: a picture of our ideal equine form. We can take the doll and tilt it into a quadrupedal stance: lengthen its neck and face maybe, or attch some tail hair to its hind-quarters.

Again in Wicca, spell-casting is customarily followed by acting in accord: the practitioner engages in behaviour likely to encourage the spell's fulfilment. That's not easy for transformation: playing at being an animal for most adults is something they feel very self-conscious about, and that negative feeling would act against you. Nevertheless, if you have complete privacy and feel comfortable with it, that is something you could try. Perhaps more practical and more easily accepted would be to meditate in a quiet location, and imagine yourself as a horse as fully as possible. You can obtain sound-effect collections on CD: see if you can find one with a collection of equine sounds on it, and play it quietly in the background. The scent of leather or straw can be evocative of horses, as can the scent of a horse itself if you can lay claim to a well-worn numnah or saddle blanket.

All of these create sympathies, and guide a work of magic toward the desired goal.



Links
Wikipedia Entry on Sympathetic Magic.
The Mystica Another account pertaining to Sympathetic Magic, and some historical examples.








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