Any wizard may cast a spell but true mastery of the arcane arts requires dedication and practice. Improper or imprecise spellcraft can prove disastrous not just to the practitioner but also to any in the vicinity. Moreover, it is most unwise to cast an unpracticed spell, especially in the heat of battle or with little preparation. The dutiful mage will attend well to what I write next. Do not be fooled or lead astray by the promises of charlatans and foolish mages who teach shortcuts and themselves indulge in vile and unwholesome practices. The megalomaniac will find little solace in careful study and deliberation and thus endangers all with his recklessness and disregard for others’ safety.
Herein I shall detail and explain the rituals and observances required to practise this art safely, conscientiously, and effectively. Do not covet power but be desirous of wisdom, and above all crave insight. Only through patient study and strict adherence to right practice can undesirous magickal effects be limited. Know that any time you work with energies, Mundane, Aetherial, or Daedric, there is always the risk of manacaust, Magicka Burn, which sears the flesh and scorches the soul. As any novice should know, energy can be contained in vessels of the appropriate size. For example a grand soul will not be held by a petty soul gem. So too can the mortal body only hold a limited amount of magicka. If too much is channeled the results can be deadly to say the least. It is then wise for the aspiring mage to learn well their own limits, be they willpower, magicka pool, or else technical skill.
Firstly: It is imperative that a safe space be chosen, secluded enough so as not to interfere with locals, yet close enough to amenities that one’s work shall not be impeded by frequent supply trips and other such nuisances. Of course, the best mages join institutions, such as the now defunct Mages Guild, where their progress can be monitored and they can be taught by masters of the craft. This notwithstanding, there are obviously advantages to solitary study, but such ‘hedge magic’ is unwise if one wishes to cultivate their skill in a controlled and efficient manner. Why discover for yourself what countless others have already discoursed and written on? In any case, a space needs to be chosen that will afford the practitioner the privacy and latitude the craft requires.
Having chosen a suitable site, a magickal circle needs to be drawn. It is best to draw an eight pointed star to represent the Divines who hold together this world, whilst also lighting candles for each corner of the star. This will focus the magicka around the circle and will prevent it from escaping. In addition, the circle should be drawn either with specially prepared blue cord or else with a mixture of void salts and salt. In this author’s opinion, the most powerful rituals require strong binding agents and so should be sealed with void salts. To draw the circle, an enchanted dagger or ‘athame’ as the Bretons call it, is necessary. The enchantment type is not important, merely that the blade itself carries a magickal charge. With blade in hand, walk sunwise drawing a circle in the air above the cord or salts. This done, in the centre of the circle place a gemstone, precious metal, or alchemically potent ingredient such as ash, glow dust, or other such things. This will focus the magic of the circle into the centre, driving out any negative influence. Next, walk sunwise about the circle intoning the spell ‘AE AI DAE, NRN AI MUNDUS AI OBLIVION’ all the while burning an incense of Somnalius frond, or any herbs used in cooking. With all this done, the circle is now ready to be used.
Secondly: Now that the circle is ready for use, the practitioner must calm themselves and enter the circle devoid of all worries, anxieties, and trivial matters. When entering the circle great care must be taken to not disrupt its harmony. To enter the practitioner must imagine a doorway which they will then step through and close on the other side.
At this stage of the ritual, the barrier is not yet substantial and is merely symbolic of the divide between the Work and the World. The next matter to attend to is to solidify the barrier. The mage must focus their energy into creating a ward that surrounds the circle and which is bound to the item in the centre of the circle. This will prevent any spells that go awry from damaging the outside area and will also protect the mage from outside threats.
Thirdly: Now that the circle is ready it is time to perform your ritual, practise your spell, or else meditate. The circle is a safe space to perform your work. As an aside, it is important to remember that if one is conjuring Daedra it is good practice to utilise two magickal circles; one to contain the Daedra and the other to protect the mage whilst they are performing the ritual. Insufficient care can lead to the Daedra escaping or the conjuror being pulled into Oblivion by the Daedra itself.
Lastly: When all rituals and Work have been completed, the ward on the circle is to be lowered and the circle exited through the same door visualisation as was done on entering. If the circle is intended to be temporary, it may now be dissolved by loosing the magicks back to the Mundus or else by absorbing them yourself. However, if the circle is intended to be permanent then it is wise to establish safeguards against tampering and misuse. Finally, whilst the circles described in this treatise have chiefly been concerned with the art of Conjuration and Rituals, the circles can be used for other purposes such as for teleportation. By consecrating the circle’s components in a second circle, the two circles can be magickally linked across any distance. Moreover, multiple circles may be drawn in order to access many locations from any circle.
In conclusion, I pray that the reader pays heed to my advice and warnings regarding the performance and execution of the craft. It is our privilege to harness the forces of this world and thus it is our duty to ensure that no harm befalls either ourselves or others when applying this most Sacred Art.
Scholar and Master of the Magickal Arts
“Dark Mage” | Illustration by KaanaMoonshadow