|All you need to perform the ancient fire spells is any kind of safe surface, or container; it could be anything at all, even a bowl filled with sand, and it doesn't have to be big, or even outdoors.
The fire bowl I use for indoor, table top fire magic at night is no larger than a cereal bowl, made of brass and stands on three legs, which helps to not burn the table. If you have a smoke detector in the house, it would be a good idea to turn it off before you start. There is also merit in opening a window, for how else will the smoke rise to the heavens and carry your prayers, or intent?
Next, we need something to burn.
I like to collect twigs from certain trees, tiny little pieces which dry quickly and burn easily. Different kinds of wood flavour the smoke differently, and it is fascinating to experiment and learn for yourself how the scents and flavours of different woods affect your mood and visions.
We may then also consider to add some herbs to burn - sage, rosemary, bay leaves, lavender, pine needles, leaves from a eucalyptus tree - the choice is really completely endless. I would suggest to start with what you can find naturally in your environment, be this out of doors, in your garden, or your local grocery, which often sells different kinds of herbs.
If you are a more experienced magician, you can begin to match the wood you burn and the herbs you add for the smoke effect to the purpose of the spell, but actually, for that true primal feel it isn't necessary at all.
Fire Spell Step 1:
Simply light the fire, look into the flames and think about what you want to say to the Gods, or what you would ask of them. Think about it deeply and let the flames hypnotise you.
Fire Spell Step 2:
With a small fire in a bowl, the flames will burn out soon enough, and then you have glowing embers. It is at that point you add the herbs, and it is then that the smoke will begin to rise powerfully, and that's when you state your intent or say your prayer.
You could say, for example:
Hear me, wise ones, old ones, those who dwell above;
Hear my call and hear my voice, hear my prayer:
Send to me the blessings of joy, of happiness, and of love.
I prefer if you would let words simply come to you as you were looking into the flames and thinking about what it was that you wanted. When things come from the heart, and in the moment, that's the most powerful state for magic there is.
Fire Spell Step 3:
Basically, that's all you have to do.
If you wanted to, you could add an offering to the powers that be as a sign of respect and gratitude, such as burning some special herbs such as tobacco; some people like to burn a bank note but I'm really not in favour of that, personally; some people add a gift of a few drops of rose oil, frankincense or even liquor for the offering.
This is an optional step because the gift you gave was to light the fire in the first place and make contact with the powers that be; they appreciate your sincere attention more than anything, and a meaningful, "Thank you for listening" at the end or words to that effect is quite enough to seal the spell.
More Fire Spell Ideas
The variations on the basic fire spell set up are pretty limitless, as are so many things in magic.
One variation I have found useful and which I actually use often is to write short messages on small pieces of paper and burn them during the smoke stage of the fire spell. These messages can be actual messages to loved ones far away, loved ones in the spirit world, notes of gratitude for blessings received, wishes for the World, or requests for items or qualities that you might miss in your life.
Fire purifies as well as transmutes; so you can also use the fire stage to for example burn photographs of people who you want out of your life, or write their names on a piece of paper and burn that instead. Likewise, you can write down things you don't need or want and let that be burned up in the flames.
* Remember: It isn't the words on the paper, or the pictures themselves, that make the spell happen, but it is YOUR INTENT in regards to this object or person that powers the fire spell.
In conclusion I would say that fire spells are amongst my favourite kinds of magical activities. It really gets you close up and personal to the magical inheritance of mankind across all the ages, all the cultures, everywhere in the world and is an extremely powerful way to communicate with the spirit world, and the worlds and dimensions above and below.
SFX July 2007