The Pentagram is the most common symbol of witchcraft, the same way the Cross of Christ represents Christianity. It is said to have originated in 3500 B.C. in ancient Mesopotamia. It is a drawn equilateral five-point star, upright and inscribed within a single circle. It represents the unanswered questions within the universe, the unexplained and mysterious.
The Pentagram symbolizes the power of the spirit as the controlling aspect of all of the elements. A pentagram is a five-pointed star with a single point on top and a circle connecting all of the star’s points. In witchcraft, the pentagram is the symbol representing the mysteries of creation. It is used in spells, rites, and rituals and is often carved or etched onto magical items. You can make a pentacle out of clay, copper, wood, silver, gold, or brass, and you place it in a central position on the altar you have made. Pentagrams are important in evoking spirits, consecrating something, transforming something, or banishing negativity.
How to Use Pentacles
Pentacles can be ornate or very plain. Practitioners of witchcraft can make their own pentacles out of the materials listed above, and they can be decorated to be more ornate with gems or pieces of glass. Specific runes can be placed on the pentacle to make it more personal to the owner of the pentacle. Many practitioners will often identify themselves by wearing a ring or necklace with a pentagram. Some are charged to be talismans or amulets and carry magical power all on their own. You can have a pentacle made from silver to represent the moon’s female energies and represent psychic energy. Gold pentacles stand for male energy and are intentionally powerful and strong.
Materials used in the pentacle’s construction have significance. Silver is connected to the moon and is associated with femininity, healing, and connections. Gold is connected to the sun and is associated with business, wealth, and fame. Iron is associated with stability, restriction, and banishment.
For best results, make your own pentacle to use in your rituals. Magical tools are most effective when they have personal connections to the practitioner. The required materials vary by who makes them, as long as the shape itself is correct. They need not be ornate but can be additionally decorated with glass, jewelry chains, or personalized runes. These runes usually have some connection to the practitioner and the intention of the ritual that is being performed. For instance, the rune Dagaz that’s shaped like a butterfly can be attached to a pentagram to represent transformation.
The Symbolism of the Pentagram
When placing runes or otherwise attaching psychically significant items to a pentagram, it might be helpful to remember the symbolism of the pentagram itself. Each point of the star within the pentagram represents either one of the four classical elements or the “fifth element” of Spirit. This fifth element is the top point of the star and is associated with divinity and unity. Going clockwise from there, the upper right point of the star symbolizes water or the emotional and intuitive senses of human beings. Fire is the lower right point of the star. It is linked to the banishing of fear and the strengthening of courage. Earth is the lower-left point of the star, associated with stability and physical endurance. Finally, the upper left point of the star is Air, which symbolizes communication, intelligence, and artistry.
How to Use the Pentagram in your Rituals
Spells designed to affect the spiritual world commonly use a pentagram in the ritual. These “spiritual” spells include the consecration of a site or natural area to protect it from malevolent influences, spiritual transformation, the summoning of friendly spirits, or the banishing of corrupt or mischievous spirits. A pentagram is an important focus for creating a magic circle, which can involve drawing an additional pentagram.
Invoking the Presence of a Pentagram
During magical rituals and spells, pentagrams are often drawn in the air using a sword or the hand. Four of the total five points of the star represent the four elements of fire, water, earth, and air. The topmost star represents “spirit” and is not an element at all. Even the circle has meaning. The circle represents the sacred space in which the “spirit” controls all of the elements of the earth. Invoking the presence of a pentagram involves the use of five flowing strokes. You go from your forehead to your left foot, from your left foot to your right shoulder, from your right shoulder to your left shoulder, and from your left shoulder to your right foot. Then you complete the pentagram by going from your right foot to your forehead. A circle is made after that, which encompasses the totality of the star shape.
Banishing pentagrams are drawn in reverse order to a regular pentagram. You still start at your forehead but then go down to your right foot, to your left shoulder, to your right shoulder, to your left foot, and back up to the forehead again. When the pentagram is drawn, the individual receives the power and protection the pentagram brings. You can visualize certain points of the pentagram as they represent the spirit and the four elements and use the visualization of one of the points in order to be successful in casting a spell or performing a ritual. This also works in the meditative aspects of witchcraft. You can see the “spirit” point as ruling over the lesser elements of our lives. Visualizing the spirit point can awaken your higher mind and meditate more clearly. You can begin an exploration of the power of the universe over everything in your life. All you do is sit in a meditative pose, draw the power of the pentagram in front of you and focus on the topmost star point. You can begin by focusing on each of the lesser elements and then move up to the topmost point so that you achieve the power of the spirit and can meditate on just about anything. It will make you more focused and have more energy to meditate.
Other Uses for the Pentagram in Rituals
The pentagram is also used within a ritual without using an actual physical pentagram. Instead, the practitioner traces the pentagram out in chalk on the surface he uses to cast the spell or traces it with his finger as he casts it. When drawing the pentagram, start at the lower-left corner and draw the first line to the point before continuing to the lower right corner, the left corner, and the right corner before back to the lower-left corner.
The Meaning of an Inverted Pentagram
Finally, the inverted pentagram is another well-known symbol that is often confused with the upright pentagram. When the pentagram is reversed, the symbol represents a connection with the Devil instead of the Divine. This is the reason why pentagrams are often unfairly associated with devil worship. When creating a pentagram and invoking it, pay close attention to the orientation. Magic, like any tool, can be used for positive and negative purposes. Pentagrams are an important expression of that.