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Author Topic: Constructing your own Eclectic Ceremony  (Read 4806 times)
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« Topic Start: December 14, 2010, 08:34:08 pm »

When I design my Ceremony I am tempted to throw in everything but the kitchen sink. I have such varied techniques that it gets a little difficult to decide what all I want to incorporate. This is after I do divination to help me decide. I also have conflicting multiple correspondences that all are valid.

I was wondering if any one else has this problem. I don't have these issues when I do themed ceremonies based off of a certian path, only when I am planning something that calls for multiple paths to work harmoniously.

It is kind of like baking a cake. My base recipies are just fine, It is when I have to choose between all the delicious ingredients that could go in.

I am always pretty sure which Dieties and spirit guides I am working with. For something like this when I ask thier advice I get something like "well, lets see what you come up with, should be amusing!"

Any advice, personal stories or musings are appreciated, thanks.
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« Reply #1: December 14, 2010, 11:57:54 pm »

When I design my Ceremony I am tempted to throw in everything but the kitchen sink. I have such varied techniques that it gets a little difficult to decide what all I want to incorporate. This is after I do divination to help me decide. I also have conflicting multiple correspondences that all are valid.

I was wondering if any one else has this problem. I don't have these issues when I do themed ceremonies based off of a certian path, only when I am planning something that calls for multiple paths to work harmoniously.

It is kind of like baking a cake. My base recipies are just fine, It is when I have to choose between all the delicious ingredients that could go in.

I am always pretty sure which Dieties and spirit guides I am working with. For something like this when I ask thier advice I get something like "well, lets see what you come up with, should be amusing!"

Any advice, personal stories or musings are appreciated, thanks.

My goodness, that sounds busy!

For me, it's a careful, slow design. I have two record books, one for rough drafts and one for the final ritual; I take the time to scrawl out every aspect of the ritual in my rough draft book, from various verse and lists of necessary objects and to carefully written, grammatically correct instructions and even sketches of illustrations, which I like to add around the pages as if the book belonged to an old monastery.

It comes together slowly, patiently, but with zest.
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« Reply #2: December 15, 2010, 12:53:46 am »

It is kind of like baking a cake. My base recipies are just fine, It is when I have to choose between all the delicious ingredients that could go in.

Unlike other forms of cooking, baking pretty much REQUIRES that a basic recipe be followed.  This is because everything that goes into cake batter (or any other kind of batter or dough) has a unique purpose in the chemical reaction that happens when you put it in the oven.  Changing one thing or adding "delicious ingredients" could disrupt these processes and you would end up with something less than desirable.
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« Reply #3: December 15, 2010, 08:27:14 pm »

My goodness, that sounds busy!

For me, it's a careful, slow design. I have two record books, one for rough drafts and one for the final ritual; I take the time to scrawl out every aspect of the ritual in my rough draft book, from various verse and lists of necessary objects and to carefully written, grammatically correct instructions and even sketches of illustrations, which I like to add around the pages as if the book belonged to an old monastery.

It comes together slowly, patiently, but with zest.

I never thought of keeping a book for rough drafts. Might be something I look into.

Thanks.
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« Reply #4: December 15, 2010, 08:32:47 pm »

Unlike other forms of cooking, baking pretty much REQUIRES that a basic recipe be followed.  This is because everything that goes into cake batter (or any other kind of batter or dough) has a unique purpose in the chemical reaction that happens when you put it in the oven.  Changing one thing or adding "delicious ingredients" could disrupt these processes and you would end up with something less than desirable.

No I mean like I have base formulas I can add things too. Like for instance I have a white cake recipe, I can choose to add blue berries of other fruit, chocolate chips, ect to it but it would be pretty messy if I added all of those things. The recipe I was reffering to leaves romm for add ins. Like I allso know that the add ins are ok in the right amount and I can ajust slighty. Like instead of all water adding 1 part water 1 part blueberry juice. Sorry if I was vague.
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« Reply #5: December 15, 2010, 08:41:49 pm »

No I mean like I have base formulas I can add things too. Like for instance I have a white cake recipe, I can choose to add blue berries of other fruit, chocolate chips, ect to it but it would be pretty messy if I added all of those things. The recipe I was reffering to leaves romm for add ins. Like I allso know that the add ins are ok in the right amount and I can ajust slighty. Like instead of all water adding 1 part water 1 part blueberry juice. Sorry if I was vague.

I think, though, that this still goes back to needing to understand how your ingredients interact, because the acidity of the blueberry juice (as opposed to whole blueberries) could have an effect on how the cake came out.  (Maybe it would be fine.  Maybe you've done it that way a bazillion times and it came out fine.  What I'm saying here is that if I were the one baking the cake, not having tried it and not being certain of how it would work, I'd be hesitant to try that particular modification until I had done a little more research into other people's recipes and how blueberry juice is used in cakes and similar baked goods.  And maybe the recipe even says it's OK, but...  well, I've come across some pretty poorly-thought-out recipes even in published cookbooks, so while I might go ahead and just try it, I might also want to check it out a little more first.)

If you're looking for a "recipe" that you can get away with just tossing things into willy-nilly, a soup might be better--but personally, I think the cake is really the better metaphor.
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« Reply #6: December 15, 2010, 09:14:31 pm »

I think, though, that this still goes back to needing to understand how your ingredients interact, because the acidity of the blueberry juice (as opposed to whole blueberries) could have an effect on how the cake came out.  (Maybe it would be fine.  Maybe you've done it that way a bazillion times and it came out fine.  What I'm saying here is that if I were the one baking the cake, not having tried it and not being certain of how it would work, I'd be hesitant to try that particular modification until I had done a little more research into other people's recipes and how blueberry juice is used in cakes and similar baked goods.  And maybe the recipe even says it's OK, but...  well, I've come across some pretty poorly-thought-out recipes even in published cookbooks, so while I might go ahead and just try it, I might also want to check it out a little more first.)

If you're looking for a "recipe" that you can get away with just tossing things into willy-nilly, a soup might be better--but personally, I think the cake is really the better metaphor.

Yeah, that is why I used the cake metaphor. Even if you get it from a good book it is still wise to do some additional research. You start with the basics then research then go a little further then research so on and so forth. It is really important to do the research especially if you are baking the cake for an important event. Cakes and baking along with ceremony take time to plan and master.

Thanks for your imput I think you helped me clarify my metaphor more.

So anyone else design their own ceremonies and have issues picking from all of the gathered techniques?
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« Reply #7: December 17, 2010, 06:24:49 am »

When I design my Ceremony I am tempted to throw in everything but the kitchen sink. I have such varied techniques that it gets a little difficult to decide what all I want to incorporate. This is after I do divination to help me decide. I also have conflicting multiple correspondences that all are valid.

I was wondering if any one else has this problem.
No.

I have never been tempted to throw in everything, and, while I've certainly had to put consideration into which bits to choose, I've never had any difficulty choosing.

I've never been tempted to put strawberries into spaghetti sauce, either.  Soups and stews and suchlike are a better analogy for eclecticism than baking is, IMO - but you still need some sense of what tastes will work together, and what won't.  Just because ingredients are yummy, doesn't mean they'll be yummy in that concoction.  And someone who doesn't have some sense of what might or might not work together isn't ready to put down the recipe book and start improvising.


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I am always pretty sure which Dieties and spirit guides I am working with. For something like this when I ask thier advice I get something like "well, lets see what you come up with, should be amusing!"
No doubt - many entities that find it amusing when we human types do ill-considered things.

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« Reply #8: December 18, 2010, 01:15:03 pm »

No.

I have never been tempted to throw in everything, and, while I've certainly had to put consideration into which bits to choose, I've never had any difficulty choosing.

I've never been tempted to put strawberries into spaghetti sauce, either.  Soups and stews and suchlike are a better analogy for eclecticism than baking is, IMO - but you still need some sense of what tastes will work together, and what won't.  Just because ingredients are yummy, doesn't mean they'll be yummy in that concoction.  And someone who doesn't have some sense of what might or might not work together isn't ready to put down the recipe book and start improvising.

No doubt - many entities that find it amusing when we human types do ill-considered things.

Sunflower

Maybe I exagerated some when I said throw evereything in. Metaphors aside the point I was trying to make was that in being eclectic I have gathered many techinques that work well together. To make a meaningful ceremony I don't want it to be too simple or to complicated. Since I have already discovered which techniques work well together it is difficult for me to choose which ones I will use.I would like to use them all but if I do that the ceremony will be too complicated.

I do ALOT of research and ALOT of small experimentation before I evern consider mixing these things in a ceremony. Just because a cookbook is not published does not mean the recipies are not good. I have built my "recipes" to suit my own tastes and the tastes of the Spirits I work with. Others may or may not agree with those tastes. That is a matter of opinion not personal skill.

I write my own recipes and they work for me exept in situations like this where I am contructing one that is extremely important to me, and because of the importance of what the ceremony is for it makes me want to go the extra mile. The only issue is deciding which ones would be best suited even thought they are all effective and good.

I  think that the entities in question are amused because they see how much effort and consideration I am dedicating to this ceremony already and they want to see what I make without Their direct help.

I hope this helps to clarify things.
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« Reply #9: December 20, 2010, 04:41:22 pm »

When I design my Ceremony I am tempted to throw in everything but the kitchen sink. I have such varied techniques that it gets a little difficult to decide what all I want to incorporate. This is after I do divination to help me decide. I also have conflicting multiple correspondences that all are valid.

I was wondering if any one else has this problem. I don't have these issues when I do themed ceremonies based off of a certian path, only when I am planning something that calls for multiple paths to work harmoniously.

It is kind of like baking a cake. My base recipies are just fine, It is when I have to choose between all the delicious ingredients that could go in.

I am always pretty sure which Dieties and spirit guides I am working with. For something like this when I ask thier advice I get something like "well, lets see what you come up with, should be amusing!"

Any advice, personal stories or musings are appreciated, thanks.

I found this article, "Ritual Theory and Technique," at Spiral Nature to be quite informative.  http://www.spiralnature.com/magick/rittheoryntech.html  The author explains some of the common steps to most rituals, why they're important, and how to maximize their effectiveness. 
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« Reply #10: December 20, 2010, 06:16:19 pm »

I found this article, "Ritual Theory and Technique," at Spiral Nature to be quite informative.  http://www.spiralnature.com/magick/rittheoryntech.html  The author explains some of the common steps to most rituals, why they're important, and how to maximize their effectiveness. 

Thank you I will look into it
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« Reply #11: December 24, 2010, 05:14:41 am »


I don't have that problem with rituals... but I do have that problem with cakes!  Cheesy
generally, I make a fruit cake (more popular in Uk than US, I believe?) and I really do put pretty much everything in.   Grin  Fruit cake recipe is pretty forgiving.
Not sure that is helpful for your ritual, though.  Embarrassed
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« Reply #12: December 26, 2010, 11:58:52 pm »

I don't have that problem with rituals... but I do have that problem with cakes!  Cheesy
generally, I make a fruit cake (more popular in Uk than US, I believe?) and I really do put pretty much everything in.   Grin  Fruit cake recipe is pretty forgiving.
Not sure that is helpful for your ritual, though.  Embarrassed

It is fine my cake recipe is forgiving too lol
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« Reply #13: December 30, 2010, 03:10:20 am »

When I design my Ceremony I am tempted to throw in everything but the kitchen sink. I have such varied techniques that it gets a little difficult to decide what all I want to incorporate. This is after I do divination to help me decide. I also have conflicting multiple correspondences that all are valid.

Any advice, personal stories or musings are appreciated, thanks.

I'm not sure how popular my own approach is, but I say 'Go nuts'.

I'm not a big ceremonialist, which you probably picked up from my previous comment, but when I do feel moved I follow a few simple ruled taught to me by a very wise lady of my acquaintance:
1. KISS principle rules at all times. If you really only need one candle, ten candles will just spill more wax on your carpet.
2. Intention, imagination, integrity. Intention and imagination are nine tenths of the ceremony. If you can't do it with your finger, you can't do it with your athame. Approach the ritual openly and honestly and the rest is window dressing.

Not to denigrate carefully planned and complicated ceremony which can be fun too, but my own approach is to just relax and run with it. This, of course, assumes that you have no set tradition of ritual to follow. I've always viewed the Eclectic path, which, if pressed, will be the one I admit to following, as attractively reliant on intuition rather than rules. As with most things in life, if you get stuck, strip it all back to basics. Start with the end result, work backwards with what you have and 'Go nuts'   Smiley
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