Barbaric Tongues vs. Aural Sigils - The Power of Voice

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Barbaric Tongues vs. Aural Sigils - The Power of Voice

Post  ezavan on Thu Oct 08, 2009 12:32 pm

incantation is a critical element of spellcraft in a proper mage's magic medicine bag. using the voice, and the function of language, to assert desire and imprint it psychically on the world around you is an undeniably ancient expression of the magical impulse, and arguably all words or ideas voiced through language are magical articulations. however, mundane statements of intent, pleas, commands or requests (such as prayers, magical poetry, opening statements to ritual) spoken in a familiar language and with a familiar voice will not frequently get results unless backed by an inordinate amount of emotional energy, religious fervor, or unless repeated over and over again until exhaustion claims the speaker. having such incantations in a ritual can do well to alert the subconscious that something special is about to happen, or to intellectually prepare for the magic to come. but there are two more effective techniques, in my experience, used to formulate powerful incantations that i'd like to discuss: the use of barbarous tongues, and the creation of a mantric or aural sigil.

THE BARBARIAN THOUGHT

check out chaos magic's darling barbarian tongue ouranian here

using a language with no formal syntax, self-reference, grammar, or even apparent meaning appeals directly to the unconscious or dreaming mind within which magic is worked, bypassing the conscious mind by denying conventional modalities of language any foothold. forming a strong desire or intent and translating it into a "magical" codex by inspiration (channeling, automatic writing, trance-work) creates a strong psychic link between the intent and the newly created phrase, and also guarantees that the thinking mind won't be able to process or interfere with the spell. another important element of using barbarous tongues, for the same reason of disorienting the mundane self, is a marked difference in intonation, or a "spell voice". dropping your tone to a lower pitch, speaking loudly, giving the whole phrase a frantic whispered pace. however you choose to do it, some choice about presentation MUST be made. personally, i drop the volume to a whisper and give all words a murderously angry inflection when working with my familiars, for work with banishing or protection spells i elongate all vowels, lower my pitch, and add a kind of "boom", when trying to communicate with nature spirits or elementals i perform almost the opposite analogous operation, higher pitch faster articulation lesser volume. the absurdity of using a nonsensical language like ouranian also makes the banishing by laughter (a favored technique among traditional chaotes) a lot easier, cause, i mean, come on, you're yelling ridiculous phrases at yourself, all dressed up, surrounded by these ridiculous tools...considerations of vocalization are very important to incantations using any sort of magical language.

THE SYMBOL, THE SHAPE, THE SOUND

according to popular sigil theory, creating a precise statement of intent and compressing it into a smaller symbolic shape makes it easier to digest for the unconscious mind. the methodology for compression is basically standardized for all sigil generation, except the pictorial sigil - remove all repeating letters, rearrange letters and create a composite shape (or in this case sound) to be digested by the magical mind. for instance, let's say i want to get some crazy awesome dream-lovin from a beautiful manly incubus (don't actually use this example for the sake of your sanity, i'm basing it on a classic peter carroll example, there are better/easier ways to accomplish this (see my topic "so...let's talk about the succubus")) my statement of intent would look like "my will that i encounter an incubus in my dream world". removing all repeating letters then looks like: "mywilthaencourbd". now let's rearrange our phonetics. "MATH'ORDUB CEYNWIL" would become my power phrase.

groovy, we just developed a mantra! now, let's say that i REALLY want to get this dream-lovin done. the stronger the conscious desire, the longer you must let the sigil rest. the reason for this being that in order for the spell to be effective your lust for result can't be allowed to short-circuit itself with fear of failure. so, in our example i've waited a week since the moment of my genius mantra, haven't really been thinking about it too hard, in fact my libido's been pretty low. i start looking through my notebooks, trying to find a list of dualities or some such nonsense, and stumble on my power phrase! "oh hell" i say to myself "i forgot all about that!". looking at the phrase i don't even recognize my exact statement of intent, although i do remember it's general purpose. so i start meditating, repeating the phrase over and over and over and over and over until it doesn't even feel like i'm making real sounds, and all other conscious thoughts are silenced. ta-da! sigil charged. the symbolic sound has reached the source.

it's arguably easier to cast a sigil than to craft and use a full-on incantation, but the only thing that really matters is results. these are only two kinds of techniques, basically canonical to chaos mages. i would really enjoy a discussion about other multivarious strategies for power-words, charging phrases, or creating languages. hope that y'all have fun, be safe, and remember that every piece of magic attracts both the desired result and it's correspondent opposite.
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ezavan

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Re: Barbaric Tongues vs. Aural Sigils - The Power of Voice

Post  Khephra on Fri Oct 09, 2009 9:10 am

Excellent essay!

incantation is a critical element of spellcraft in a proper mage's magic medicine bag.

Agreed.

i would really enjoy a discussion about other multivarious strategies for power-words, charging phrases, or creating languages.

Most commonly, if I'm not using English I'm working with Hebrew, but my fluency in Hebrew is only moderate. Often, I'll learn new pronunciations by working with others. When I was first starting out I was mindful of "proper pronunciation", but by working with diverse groups of practitioners, I learned a bit more ... organic flexibility...?

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