01-16-13 Lesson 6: Month 2, Week 2: Elements: Air

Month 2 Week 2 The Elements: AIR
(Some optional or future work)…Take a deep breath into your heart, and let it out. As you
breathe in, take a moment to ponder the mystery of this ocean of air we live in. We and all the
other animals breathe in the air and remove the oxygen so that we can live…we use it to
extract energy from our food. The waste product is Carbon Dioxide, which we breathe out.
Our cousins the plants take in the Carbon Dioxide and use it to trap the energy of the
sunlight, so that when we eat them we extract this energy. The plants give off oxygen, which
they breathe out…and the cycle of life continues…giving and receiving so that we all live…like
your breath…in…and out…
The element of Air is associated with the East in the Northern Hemisphere. This is the where
the Sun rises, so this thinnest and most etherial of the elements is associated with
Sunrise…and new beginnings. It is associated with Springtime and the wonder and curiosity
of childhood.
(Some optional or future work)…Think of the joy you feel as the sky lightens in the East. Think
of the sense of potential you feel as you see the clouds take on the glorious colours of the
beginning of a new day. Of course, we feel the same sense of potential, of awe at the beauty of
a life beginning when we hear the cry of a newborn babe, or when the winds of Spring blow
the scents of the thaw and the bursting blossoms our way…
The element of Air is, of course, associated with the sense of smell. While there are scents we
associate with each of the elements , the scents of Spring flowers come to mind. And the
scents we use for cleaning the air…lavender, lemongrass, and pine. Incense is the magical tool
of the East and the Air.
(Some optional or future work)…Think for a moment about how scent can effect your mood…
your state of mind. How does the memory of cinnamon make you feel? …perhaps you
remember apple pies your mother used to make…it can make you feel loved and nurtured.
And roses…late summer evenings…romantic interludes. And lavender…your grandmother’s
house…a sense of age and cleanliness. Frankincense and Myrrh…churches…sacred spaces…
The element of Air is also associated with music. Of course, sound is transmitted through
airwaves. But Air provides the songs of the wind rustling in the trees. Of all the songbirds. Of
flutes and whistles. Of our own voices raised in song. Certainly, one can associate certain
types of instruments with each of the elements, and we will, but Air is the element of that first
creative urge to create beautiful sounds…
(Some optional or future work)…Some morning when you are awake early enough to greet the
dawn, make a point of really listening to the birds as they sing their joy at the coming light of
a new day. In fact, get up out of bed and go outside…before coffee or anything else. Listen to
the riot of song around you, and take part if you wish. Call back to the birds. Maybe offer
them some seed. Really feel the joy of interacting with these creatures of Air at the time when
Air’s energy is highest…
Creatures Associated with Air
Birds
Eagles, Hawks, Nightingales, Larks, Hummingbirds,
Wrens, Chickadees, Sparrows, etc.
Insects
Butterflies, Dragonflies, Bees, Ladybugs
Flying Creatures from Myth
Air Dragons, Fairies, flying horses
Angels are also associated with Air, although there are angels specifically associated with
each of the elements. The Archangel often called as Guardian of the Air is Raphael.
Raphael’s name means “Healer of God.” He is robed in gold, yellow, and blue. He carries a
caduceus, the wand entwined by two serpents used as a symbol of healing. He rules science,
knowledge, compassion, and healing.
Another Being who carries a caduceus, of course, is Mercury, messenger of the Gods, who
rules intellect, verbal expression, science, synthesis, and research. Mercury is another
Guardian of the Air.
The realm of Air is the mind and mental activity. Air rules the ideas that come “out of the
blue.” It offers the gift of clarity…the ability to perceive what is relevent and useful in a given
situation. It rules the process of sythesising ideas and concepts from many different sources or
disciplines into something that is cohesive and comprehensive. It rules the communication of
these ideas… writing and verbal expression. It rules teaching. And it rules poetry.
(Some optional or future work)…Some sunny morning, perhaps in the Spring…get up early
and go to some point, perhaps a hilltop somewhere where you are near the sky. Sit for a
moment and enjoy the view. Feel the wind on your skin and in your hair. And take out a large
notebook. Ask for the guidance and help of Raphael or Mercury if you wish. Start with a
word, any word, maybe “beauty.” And let the wind blow ideas, images, and associations into
your mind. Write them all down…just jot them down, maybe in little clouds like in the
comics…bursting out from the original word. For now just make as many connections and
associations as you can. Fill up a few pages. Then take a few deep breaths, read what you
have, and use the ideas and images to construct either a story, paragraph, word picture, or
poem, whatever is easiest to you. Then stand and read it aloud to the wind…and know that
you have received the gift of inspiration from the element of Air…and returned the gift of your
own creativity.
The elementals associated with Air are called Sylphs. These are among the easiest elementals
to see, especially as a flash from the corner of your eye. They look like small winged
creatures in pastel colours who ride the airwaves..often they are called fairies. They tend to be
attracted to those who are quick thinking and quick moving. They can be
mischevious…blowing things about…rustling through your hair…making sounds that distract
you.
They can also help you with all of the following:
Magical Goals Aided By Air:
Communications
Educations
Group Work
Intellectual Skills
Organisation
Overcoming Addictions
Speaking
Teaching
Tests and Examinations
Theorising
Travel
Writing…Prose, Poetry, or Music
All of the exercises offered above will help you attune to the Element of Air and its elementals,
the Sylphs. Focussing on breathing, timing magic for dawn and/or Springime, attuning to and
befriending birds and/or flying creatures, writing, singing, making music, reading anything
that makes you think, burning incense or otherwise offering lovely smells to the air (perhaps
as essential oils). When you chose to meet the Sylphs, try to find a hilltop where the breazes
fly around you. At first, just meet them and share joy in their gifts and beauty. Offer them a
present…of a song, poem, or scent. Befriend them.
You might wish to make an altar in the eastern part of your house to honour the Element of
Air and the Sylphs. Drape it and decorate it in pale blue, yellow, and white. Offer feathers,
dragonfly wings, pipes, pale blue stones, incense, herbs sacred to air. Welcome the Element
and the Sylphs to make this their home. Then light the candles and incense on this altar when
you read or write or study.
It may help when invoking the Element or elementals of Air to use the symbols offered in the
background of this page. An Air Invoking Pentagram Starts in the upper right, moves to the
upper left, and continues around to repeat this line. Air can also be invoked using the circle
with a dot in the middle, or a plain blue circle. To release the element, draw the Air Releasing
Pentagram shown in the bottom left corner, which is a reversal of the Invoking Pentagram. If
you use the blue circle or circle with dot, see the winds blowing out through it, then see it
folding in upon itself and disappearing.
Psychological Qualities Associated with Air
Balanced Air
Clarity
Creativity
Diligence
Discernment
Flexibility
Independence
Joy
Optimism
Teaching Ability
Imbalanced Air
Arrogance
Boastfullness
Contempt
Dishonesty
Emotional Coldness
Frivolity
Gossip
Paranoia
Slyness
You can ask the Element of Air, or its Guardians or the Sylphs to help you develop any of the
postive traits listed above. To balance any of the negative traits, you may need to appeal to the
other three elements to help balance an overabundance of Air.
You can also call upon the Air elementals when you wish to work on healing for the air or the
atmosphere…ask them to help remove pollutants, to repair the ozone layer, etc.
Herbs Associated with the Element of Air
Acacia Agaric Agrimony Almond
Anise Aspen Bean Benzoin
Bergamot Bistort Bittersweet Borage
Bracken Broom Caraway Celery
Chicory Clover Dandelion Dill
Dock Elecampagne Eyebright Fennel
Goldenrod Hops Lavender Lemongrass
Lemon Verbena Lily of the Valley Linden Mace
Male Fern Maple Marjoram Mastic
Meadowsweet Mint Mistletoe Mulberry
Parsley Pecan Pimpernel Pine
Pistachio Rice Summer Savory Senna
Slippery Elm Southernwood Star Anise
Gems and Stones Associated with the Element of Air
Aventurine Angelite Azurite Celestite
Kyanite Mica Pumice Sphene
Air Incense
(from Cunningham)
4 parts Benzoin
2 parts Gum Mastic
1 part Lavender
1 part Wormwood
1 pinch Mistletoe
(mistletoe is toxic, if used, burn
outdoors)
Air Oil
5 drops Lavender
1 drop Lemongrass
1 ounce carrier oil
Other correspondences include the astrological signs of Libra, Gemini, and Aquarius, and the
Planets Mercury and Uranus.
Air rules the suit of Swords and is associated with the Magician, Justice, the Wheel of
Fortune, Temperance, and the Star in the Tarot.
A Sample Invocation to the East and the Air Element
Guardian of the East, wise and gentle Raphael:
Hold this corner of our circle and let the Air blow into it.
Send to us the beautiful Sylphs to help in our healing work.
Bless us with the music and strength of the winds,
The inspiration of the Sunrise,
The clarity and perception of the soaring eagle,
And the clear communicating power of language.
We feel you and welcome you.
Blessed Be.
The AIR- in Resumé
Air is the element of inspiration and communication. It is associated with mental processes
and learning, philosophy and intellectual pursuits. It is the element of the mind. Here are few
correspondences associated with Air:
Cardinal point: East
Color: Yellow
Archangel: Raphael (The Healer)
Tools and associations: feathers, censor and incense, some associate blades to air (others
ascribe them to Fire), divination tools, birds
It is customary to place incense in the Eastern quarter to represent air. Magical uses for Air
(like last week, see if you can come up with a few before looking up the answers):
The use of breath is a big one, that I use regularly. Breathing itself has a calming, relaxing
effect and is crucial in entering into a meditative state. Breath can also be used to bless objects
and to direct energy. Air is used to speak words of Power and to perform incantations. It is
used in mantras to achieve a meditative state or to go into trance. Because Air is the element
of inspiration and of communication, it is the element associated with art of divination.
Whether it be Tarot or scrying or channeling, Air is the element called upon in these practices.
This week’s HOMEWORK assignment is as follows:
1) Become Air this week. Feel what it is like to be light as a feather and
to tumble in the wind. Focus on your intuition and creativity and see
what it feels like to live in that space. Try to communicate more, seek
out others and truly feel the interaction.
2) Look around you and experience this element. Note down every
example of Air that you can see in your surroundings. Describe what it
looks like, feels like, sound, smells and tastes like.
3) Write down 5 practical uses that we have for Air. Try to find more
magical uses for Air than the ones listed above.
4) Embody Air through a choreography of your own making.
5) Spend some time every evening( 2-5 minutes) breathing and trying
this small meditation exercise:
in a quiet sitting position begin slowly breathing in and out. Once you
feel calm and centered focus on your breathing.
At the point at the end of my breath when I am empty, I say, “Mother of
all beings….” As I breathe in, I say, “Fill me with your Light.” As I pause
with my being filled, I say, “Let it heal me…” And as I breathe out, I say,
“And manifest in all I do.” Give it a try.
References:
The Dance
Adelina St-Clair
Scott Cunningham

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