I’m proficient with multiple forms of sigil making but I’ve recently seen something called a spell circle. All my research leads me to casting a circle which Isn’t what I’m looking for. Can anyone help me out?
Magic circles denote domains of authority, influence and power, or to serve as a denotation of transitions of experience. The purpose of magical circles and triangles in many Victorian grimoires is to function like licenses, degrees, or police badges regarding evoked and restrained entities. It is symbolic of something intrinsically and implicitly there, because whatever is extensional of you has a scope and domain. If we point to something and state this is a bed; we are stating that instance has qualities such that we can include it in the domain of the category of bed, so intentionality has implicit domains. While we do not need to denote this by casting a circle explicitly, the connotation is implicitly there because of how magic works. Our experience before, during, and after the magical operation is different, so the experiential differences are there if we explicitly denote it or not.
A lot of Victorian grimoires predicate the seals on tessellation, stellation, magic squares, and congruence. Circles are convenient circumscriptions of intuitive loops that closely align with intuitive concepts and facilitate recursive drawing of shapes and other geometries. Magic circles as a moduli space is more an ontological convenience. If the idea is that a magical working corresponds to particular periods, circles are intuitive, albeit it can technically be any shape. We can conceptualize complex magical seals that involve astral bodies as being embedded in giant clocks.
Mechanically, any spell you cast has a structure with the same connotation of a magic circle because the spell denotes a collection of entities within the scope of the spell. Sequentially traversing a loop is like a rotation, so if the structure has power, a loop, like a circle, rotates the energy and creates waves. That means tracing a magical circle creates emanations of waves. So magical circles are intuitive archetypes for raising energy and manipulating frequencies and waves of magical energy. The harmonics would emerge from the repetition of the arrangement of shapes and sigils in periods, intervals, and cycles. The wave structure emerges from tracing a consistent shape. We can denote magic circles by loops where the corresponding sigils are just expressions and parameters within the domain of that loop.
What we think about is symbolic, and it has a domain, so it does not matter if we denote an explicit circle or not, for generic spell casting. It is implicitly there with the energy and harmonics of the spell. If there is no actual power behind it, then you are just manipulating imaginary constructs, in any case. Manipulating symbols that are not related to what they reference is just manipulating imaginary constructs, so do not expect to use magic by reading and following the steps in a grimoire. Magical words have an inflection. The inflection is the implicit and tacit knowledge of the experience of the magician. It constitutes knowledge of how to shape the magic…
…Sigils, symbols, variables, and categories are interchangeable, so you should apply the same intuition to sigils that you apply to the manipulation of variables or categories in an equation….
Many modern practitioners use magic circles as a container for the magickal energies they are working with — it keeps out energies and influences that might mess up a spell, and it holds in the energies the practitioner is raising so that it can build to an appropriate strength and then be focussed upon its target.
If your spell is that delicate, that means when cast, it will mutate and “spin” out of control. If another entity can cause a qualitative shift in the spell, this implies the magical energy is chaotic and will fizzle out. Think of something like the butterfly effect…Keep in mind the point of real magic is to interact with the real world, so if outside influences can cause a qualitative shift, your spell is likely to literally short-circuit and is not robust…
…An illustration of my point is if a magic circle is a container, and your spell is like a gas when you open the container, your spell will spread out and dissipate. If your spell is like a rock, when you open the container, it will not dissipate, and you can throw it at someone. It will still be solid. Containers are not needed to retain the shape of a rock. If outside influences can qualitatively change your spell, your spell is more gaseous and liquid than solid because that implies ambiguities in your spell that behave like the entropy of gasses and liquids. Liquid changes shape based on its vessel, so a sorcerer can just reshape your spell. Practical magic takes place in the real world and not the confines of your living room. The goal is for it to do something and if it falls apart or rearranges itself and does not do what you intended, the spell failed. Magical energy that is not tightly controlled will turn itself into an entirely different spell. Magic is very unstable. Spell inversions, reflections, and other transformations are colloquially known as rebounds or backfires…
…If outside influences can drastically change the state of your spell initially, this means the spell is intrinsically chaotic. As the spell scales, the uncertainty scales. That causes different possible configurations that are technically different spells. If you need a structure to retain its integrity initially, it will mutate when the spell propagates. Ambiguities are a source of chaos in magic. The metaphorical phase state is because of things like magic code not being properly structured. If you look at a seal, you will notice shapes and symbols. Those are words and more abstractly, codes, from a magical language. If you cannot look at a formula and precisely understand what an angle, edge, and symbol denotes semantically and possess the tacit knowledge of how to use it, your spell is probably going to be chaotic and disordered. The more disordered something is, the likelier it is to decay. If you do not formally define your spell and you operate on pure intuition, the ambiguity will act as chaos and entropy. Formal magical languages exist to avoid the ambiguity of everyday language. Improperly constructing a stave, for example, can lead to all types of unfortunate things. Magical correspondences are technically “words” (a set of entities, symbols, and properties), so randomly sticking together occult symbols get you magic mud. It is like thinking you can cook because you put a bunch of stuff in a pot of water.
The problem is that people usually opt for an eclectic, pragmatic approach, but that is like trying to make music by randomly banging on things. The dissonance creates noise. Lack of knowledge of how it seems to manipulate the forces symbols denote combined with the dissonance of the random ways people do things, and the vagueness of intuition is why people’s stuff is so sensitive to interference. Properly defined magic will only interact with things in its domain. A trope is how spirits are largely intangible because they are not on the same “plane” as physical objects. Unstable, vague, and ambiguous methods, like visualization, lead to spells mutating and doing odd things… For example, a protective spell constructed from magical words is more solid than a person visualizing things. That is because magical words have more order than broad images with ambiguous and vague definitions (white lights can mean many different things). Random sigils are equivalent to white light visualization. Yea, you can project your will out there into the universe, but it does not have a consistent form without a definition. An ontological system allows for modeling of knowledge and the ascription of forces. Encapsulated into symbols is our apprehension of that symbol where knowledge about how to use it is extensional of experiential, internal knowledge and is a vector of power. It is why you cannot pick up a grimoire, read from it, and summon a demon. Without semantic and tacit knowledge, the energy is going to be mud.
Many of your popular seals are literal astral clocks; however, since most people do not bother to learn the seals’ structures, they misuse them. You would be surprised at how many people use the wrong seal for the wrong hour or day.