Energy Work

A stack of stones along Water Street Boardwalk.

Much of magic is based on focusing your thoughts on your goals – focusing your own energy, building these up, releasing raised energy with your will as its guide, and grounding. Energy work comes in many forms, so let us dive right in to the energy and get acquainted.

Needed Materials

Allow us to weave you a tapestry of energy work – for this you really only need a bit of time to read and ponder. As above, so below is the concept. Energy makes a sort of pool around everything, influencing it with it’s minutia. Pagans are not generally irrational. It is understood that one cannot skip work in order to throw down that financial ritual, then try to rationally state that was the proper order of operations required for success.

What will be needed is a bridge of some sort to the cornerstone belief that you can influence change. By some means of monism, dualism, deity, universal force, karma, rationalism, or otherwise. By even strict pragmatism, arguably what we think eventually does influence our actions within the world. If one can get to an agreement that even our mood influences how our interactions go, energy work is not far removed.

A stack of stones along Water Street Boardwalk.
Everything is somewhat connected, in this view.
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Energy Systems

What consumes your thoughts ultimately controls your life. Understanding – and influencing – how energy flows within and outside ourselves is the core of energy work. Energy can be manipulated through activities such as meditation, prayer, ritual, certain martial arts, astral projection, ritual dance, divination…All routes lead through understanding energy as its own force and directing it.

Active energy work is referring not to jogging while meditating – while this is also a distinction one could make. Energy with purpose, being directed upon its way by someone or something. They have a particular focus, a goal within them. Releasing of and grounding energy are often projections of active energy.

Passive energy work, on the other hand tends to be a rather static force. We see this often within items and places, however it also tends to present among the pagans. Protection spells, cleansing, and the like tend to fit in here. Passive energy makes for great barriers.

Introspective energy work, with which pagans may work through internal issues, may come in both active and passive shades. Shadow work can often involve both, in bringing our selves out into the world. Like ducks paddling under the water, so much is going on just below the surface. Long before action is taken, energy and experience come together. More often, focusing and building up energy fits here.

Energy Work in Things

Whether it be granddad’s pocket watch, ceremonial items, blessed, or cursed items – physical things manipulate energies and focuses in various ways. Practitioners of all varieties will imbue, cleanse, and/or bless their ritual items. We place certain reverence in ritual items. You see, these things are champion passive energy work items.

Determining whether a thing has imbued or intrinsic effects on their immediate environment is not always easy. Then again, it often is not necessary to know. Do you know that feeling you get just seeing something and not wanting it anywhere in your home? It is not that the thing is hideous; there is just this unsettling feeling. Some feel this way about clowns, or dolls.

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A sea bird flies past a sailboat on the water.
True crime teaches that people often mistake bodies for mannequins or dolls.

Energy Work in Places

An imbued place might be an alter area, a cast circle, or even a freshly cleansed space. Often created temporarily, imbued places are usually limited in their range. Larger scale protection fields might fall into this category. Unlike above, linked to specific objects, this effect is anchored to a specified location.

Throughout time, there have existed places that seem to have their own energy. Certain places create a psychic enmeshment. Almost of their own accord, intrinsic energy in a place seems to hang over it. As though tainted, or adorned with an unnatural sense of awe, they appear throughout mythos and urban legend alike.

In the middle of a field, along the makeshift path to the water, exists such a place. Plowed around, seeded around, given wide berth…It drew questions. Always quiet: what is that? Almost a whisper. Oh, just the shipwreck graveyard. This is an intrinsic energy about a place. No one speaks again until it is passed, more often than not. We don’t fuck with that – it remains unspoken yet heeded.

Within some belief structures, souls and blood stain a place. As does charity, goodwill, and welcoming. A lacquer of sorts of all that has been experienced. Similarly, there are some who would argue nature a peculiar introspection and life all its own. In fact, it would not be exceptional to find a pagan who considers nature or the universe its own omnipresent, intrinsic force of sentience.

Nightfall changes everything.
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Quick Guide

Energy work can be formulated into a series of categories when considering people, places, and things. Categories discussed were passive, active, introspective, imbued, and intrinsic energy work. Some energy work can shift between and intersect these categories. Energy work is understood as directing internal and external energies to some end.

Get out those quills:
1. Where would you fit the following energy work examples using the highlighted categories?
~Amelia lights a candle, praying for her friend to recover quickly from her cold.
~Kanav channels through some of the stress of his day using paint as the chosen medium.
~Village elders drum for the celebrating couple, who dance and share a feast for all.

Or, if that sounds a lot like work: imagine complex actions and ripples throughout a puddle. Write about a time when actions interacted with one another.


Fine print

Anyone currently thinking about imbuing items, definitely read up and heed cautions prior. Re: Failsafe? Happy trails, to those practiced already though. This is by no means an exhaustive understanding of energy work, but a jumping off point, dear Readers.

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