Invocations and Prayers
Shamash was the Sun God of ancient Babylon. The prayer that follows is one of the longest and most beautiful of the hymns that have come down to us in cuneiform. I think this would make an awesome invocation, prayer, or meditation to greet the Sun as morning dawns after the longest night of the year (The Winter Solstice).
You climb to the mountains surveying the earth,
You suspend from the heavens the circle of the lands.
You care for all the peoples of the lands,
And everything that Ea, king of the counselors, had created is entrusted to you.
Whatever has breath you shepherd without exception,
You are their keeper in upper and lower regions.
Regularly and without cease you traverse the heavens,
Every day you pass over the broad earth. . . .
Shepherd of that beneath, keeper of that above,
You, Shamash, direct, you are the light of everything.
You never fail to cross the wide expanse of sea,
The depth of which the Igigi know not.
Shamash, your glare reaches down to the abyss
So that monsters of the deep behold your light. . . .
Among all the Igigi there is none who toils but you,
None who is supreme like you in the whole pantheon of gods.
At your rising the gods of the land assemble,
Your fierce glare covers the land.
Of all the lands of varied speech,
You know their plans, you scan their way.
The whole of mankind bows to you,
Shamash, the universe longs for your light. . . .
Every single person is entrusted to your hands;
You manage their omens; that which is perplexing you make plain.
You observe, Shamash, prayer, supplication, and benediction,
Obeisance, kneeling, ritual murmurs, and prostration.
The feeble man calls you from the hollow of his mouth,
The humble, the weak, the afflicted, the poor,
She whose son is captive constantly and unceasingly confronts you.
He whose family is remote, whose city is distant,
The shepherd [amid) the terror of the steppe confronts you,
The herdsman in warfare, the keeper of sheep among enemies.
Shamash, there confronts you the caravan, those journeying in fear,
The travelling merchant, the agent who is carrying capital.
Shamash, there confronts you the fisherman with his net,
The hunter, the bowman who drives the game,
With his bird net the Fowler confronts You.
The prowling thief, the enemy of Shamash,
The marauder along the tracks of the steppe confronts you.
The roving dead, the vagrant soul,
They confront you, Shamash, and you hear all.
You do not obstruct those that confront you. . . .
For my sake, Shamash, do not curse them!
You grant revelations, Shamash, to the families of men,
Your harsh face and fierce light you give to them. . . .
The heavens are not enough as the vessel into which you gaze,
The sum of the lands is inadequate as a seer’s bowl…….
You deliver people surrounded by mighty waves,
In return you receive their pure, clear libations. . . .
They in their reverence laud the mention of you,
And worship your majesty for ever. . . .
Which are the mountains not clothed with your beams?
Which are the regions not warmed by the brightness of your light?
Brightener of gloom, illuminator of darkness,
Dispeller of darkness, illuminator of the broad earth.
The language of this verse is given as Indeterminate Saxon, and a great translation of the charm can be found at the Pagan Calendar here: The Charming of the Plough.
Her ys seo bot, hu ðu meaht þine æceras betan gif hi
nellaþ wel wexan oþþe þær hwilc ungedefe þing on gedon bið
on dry oððe on lyblace. Genim þonne on niht, ær hyt
dagige, feower tyrf on feower healfa þæs landes, and gemearca
hu hy ær stodon. Nim þonne ele and hunig and beorman,
and ælces feos meolc þe on þæm lande sy, and ælces treow-
cynnes dæl þe on þæm lande sy gewexen, butan heardan
beaman, and ælcre namcuþre wyrte dæl, butan glappan anon,
and do þonne haligwæter ðær on, and drype þonne þriwa on
þone staðol þara turfa, and cweþe ðonne ðas word: Crescite,
wexe, et multiplicamini, and gemænigfealda, et replete, and
gefylle, terre, þas eorðan. In nomine patris et filii et spiritus
sancti sit benedicti. And Pater Noster swa oft swa þæt oðer.
And bere siþþan ða turf to circean, and mæssepreost asinge
feower mæssan ofer þan turfon, and wende man þæt grene to
ðan weofode, and siþþan gebringe man þa turf þær hi ær
wæron ær sunnan setlgange. And hæbbe him gæworht of
cwicbeame feower Cristes mælo and awrite on ælcon ende:
Matheus and Marcus, Lucas and Iohannes. Lege þæt
Cristes mæl on þone pyt neoþeweardne, cweðe ðonne: Crux
Matheus, crux Marcus, crux Lucas, crux sanctus Iohannes.
Nim ðonne þa turf and sete ðær ufon on and cweþe ðonne
nigon siþon þas word, Crescite, and swa oft Pater Noster,
and wende þe þonne eastweard, and onlut nigon siðon
eadmodlice, and cweð þonne þas word:
Eastweard ic stande, arena ic me bidde,
bidde ic þone mæran domine, bidde ðone miclan drihten,
bidde ic ðone haligan heofonrices weard,
eorðan ic bidde and upheofon
and ða soþan sancta Marian
and heofones meaht and heahreced,
þæt ic mote þis gealdor mid gife drihtnes
toðum ontynan þurh trumne geþanc,
aweccan þas wæstmas us to woruldnytte,
gefyllan þas foldan mid fæste geleafan,
wlitigigan þas wancgturf, swa se witega cwæð
þæt se hæfde are on eorþrice, se þe ælmyssan
dælde domlice drihtnes þances.
Wende þe þonne III sunganges, astrece þonne on andlang
and arim þær letanias and cweð þonne: Sanctus, sanctus,
sanctus oþ ende. Sing þonne Benedicite aþenedon earmon
and Magnificat and Pater Noster III, and bebeod hit Criste
and sancta Marian and þære halgan rode to lofe and to
weorþinga and to are þam þe þæt land age and eallon þam þe
him underðeodde synt. ðonne þæt eall sie gedon, þonne
nime man uncuþ sæd æt ælmesmannum and selle him twa
swylc, swylce man æt him nime, and gegaderie ealle his
sulhgeteogo togædere; borige þonne on þam beame stor and
finol and gehalgode sapan and gehalgod sealt. Nim þonne
þæt sæd, sete on þæs sules bodig, cweð þonne:
Erce, Erce, Erce, eorþan modor,
geunne þe se alwalda, ece drihten,
æcera wexendra and wridendra,
eacniendra and elniendra,
sceafta hehra, scirra wæstma,
and þæra bradan berewæstma,
and þæra hwitan hwætewæstma,
and ealra eorþan wæstma.
Geunne him ece drihten
and his halige, þe on heofonum synt,
þæt hys yrþ si gefriþod wið ealra feonda gehwæne,
and heo si geborgen wið ealra bealwa gehwylc,
þara lyblaca geond land sawen.
Nu ic bidde ðone waldend, se ðe ðas woruld gesceop,
þæt ne sy nan to þæs cwidol wif ne to þæs cræftig man
þæt awendan ne mæge word þus gecwedene.
þonne man þa sulh forð drife and þa forman furh onsceote,
Hal wes þu, folde, fira modor!
Beo þu growende on godes fæþme,
fodre gefylled firum to nytte.
Nim þonne ælces cynnes melo and abacæ man innewerdre
handa bradnæ hlaf and gecned hine mid meolce and mid
haligwætere and lecge under þa forman furh. Cweþe þonne:
Ful æcer fodres fira cinne,
beorhtblowende, þu gebletsod weorþ
þæs haligan noman þe ðas heofon gesceop
and ðas eorþan þe we on lifiaþ;
se god, se þas grundas geworhte, geunne us growende gife,
þæt us corna gehwylc cume to nytte.
Cweð þonne III Crescite in nomine patris, sit benedicti.
Amen and Pater Noster þriwa.
Here is a great invocation for the Full Wolf Moon. It can be used anytime wild magick and/or freedom is requested, preferably on a full moon night.
Woman of the moon mist,
Hear me cry
Man of the pack
Master of many
Hear me cry
Darkness surrounds me
Darkness covers me
Cold chains restrain me
Set me free to run with you
Live with you
Feed with you
Let me be my inner self tonight!
I am a child of suns and moons and galaxies beyond our reach. I am air. I am fire. I am water. I am earth. I am made of the dust of distant stars. As I step out into the great unknown, I call to the cosmos to create a circle of energy here. I call to the creatures and deities of the quadrants east, south, west, and north to bless my circle with positive balanced energy. I am safe and protected as I begin the journey of my day. I feel the energy circling around me now.
Here in my circle of light I am the living air.
Here in my circle of light I am the living fire.
Here in my circle of light I am the living water.
Here in my circle of light I am the living earth.
Blessed deities of the east, south, west, and north here is my offering chant.
I am whole and vibrant. I am balanced on the edge of time. There is nothing I cannot accomplish. I feel myself rising into the shining air. I am floating and free, and filled with positive, flowing energy. I know, without any doubts, that I am on my way to becoming all I can be. And all I wish to become is within me now. I breathe in the cool air. I savor the color of the changing sky, and enjoy the view.
When I am ready, I start floating down. I take several deep breaths, coming back , and I am grounded and ready for my earth journey. In honor and thanks I release the energy here. My sircle is open. Budha, Vesta, Afka, Tenga, my thanks to you all.
I will kindle this fire under the eyes of the Tuatha De Danann
under the eyes of Brigit daughter of the Dagda,
under the eyes of Aedh the bright one.
Without fear, jealousy or malice of any kind to anyone under the sun,
but with the light of the Goddess to protect me.
Goddess of the sun, kindle within me a fire of generosity and love to all:
To my friends, my kindred, my foes and kindle within me a fire of bravery,
eloquence and generosity of truth, strength and wealth,
of beauty, charm and grace, so that I may inspire with my words.
May this fire be blessed in the eyes of the Ancient
but ever-present Gods.
From: The Path of the Shaman
The hour of the dark moon draws near;
I hear the invoking words,
hear and appear
Chthonia, Enodia, Trioditis
I come unto the holy bliss.
O three-faced Selene, come to me beloved mistress
Graciously hear my sacred spells;
Image of Night, Youthful One,
Dawn-born, light-bringer to mortals
Who rides upon fierce-eyed bulls.
O Queen, you who drive your chariot
On equal course with Helios,
You dance with the triple forms of the triple Graces
As you revel with the stars.
You are Justice and the thread of the Fates,
Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos,
O Three-headed One you are
Persephone, Megaira and Allecto
O One of many shapes who arm your hands
With terrible dark-glowing lamps,
Who shakes locks of fearsome serpents at your brow,
Whose mouths send forth the roar of bulls,
Whose womb is thick with reptile scales,
At whose shoulders are rows of venomous serpents,
Bound across your back beneath murderous chains.
O Night-bellower, Lover of solitude,
Bull-faced and Bull-headed One
You have the eyes of bulls and the voice of dogs.
Your forms are hidden in the legs of lions.
Your ankle is wolf-shaped,
and savage dogs are friendly to you,
Wherefore they call you Hekate, Many-named, Mene,
Cleaving the air like arrow-shooting Artemis,
O Goddess of Four faces, Four names, Four ways,
Artemis, Persephone, Deer-shooter, Night-shiner,
Thrice-resounding, Triple voiced, Three-headed, Thrice-named Selene
O Trident-bearing One of Three faces,
Three necks, Three Ways,
Who holds undying flaming fire in triple baskets.
You frequent the Three Ways
and are Mistress of the Three Decads.
Be gracious unto me who is invoking you
and hearken favourably.
You encompass the vast world at night,
You make the Daemones shudder
and the Immortals tremble,
O Many-named Goddess who brings glory to men,
Whose children are fair, O Bull-eyed One, Horned One,
Nature, All-mother, who brings forth both Gods and men,
You roam around Olympus and traverse
the wide and fathomless Abyss,
You are the Beginning and End,
and you alone are Mistress of All:
For from you are All things, and in you,
Eternal One, do All things end.
You bear at your brow an everlasting diadem,
The unbreakable and irremovable bonds of great Cronos,
And you hold in your hands a golden sceptre
Which is encircled by a formula
inscribed by Cronos himself
Who gave it to you to bear in
order that all things remain steadfast:
‘Overpowerer and Overpowered One
Conqueror of men and Damnodamia,’
You rule Chaos, Araracharara ephthisikere,
Hail Goddess and attend your epithets,
I offer you this incense Child of Zeus
Arrow-shooter, Heavenly One, Goddess of Harbours,
Mountain-roamer, Goddess of Crossroads,
Nocturnal One of the Underworld, Shadowy One of Hades,
Still One who frightens, having a feast among the graves.
You are Night, Darkness and broad Chaos,
For you are Necessity hard to escape
You are Fate, you are Erinys and the Torture,
You are the Murderess and Justice
You hold Cerberus in Chains,
You are steely-blue with serpent-scales,
O serpent-haired and Serpent-girdled One,
Blood-drinker, Death-bringer who breeds corruption,
Feaster on hearts,
Flesh-eater who devours those who died before their time,
Driver to the Wanderings of Madness,
Come to my sacrifices and fulfil this task for me.
~From the Greek Magical Papyri
~And also: Hekate Liminal Rites
This hymn from the Greek Magical Papyri, is addressed to Selene even though it is clearly a hymn to Hekate. The confusion of title probably arose from the syncretisation of the goddesses in the hymn, with Selene being mentioned first.
It is an awesome invocation, and perfect for use on any of Hekate’s Feast Days.
The invocation is meant to be accompanied by an offering. In keeping with other contemporary magickal practices, fragrant resins and herbs are used for positive magick. Incenses such as storax, myrrh, sage, frankincense, and (surprisingly) a fruit pit are recommended.
When calling up such a powerful and terrible deity, it’s always a good idea to bring protective charms, generous offerings, and a spirit of deep respect and reverence.