Eclectic Elementals: The Magic & Spirituality of the Elements

This is not a specifically named, established path like Asatru, Kabbalah, Hermeticism, Kemeticism, Wicca or Santeria. Yet the Elemental Path can be adapted to any traditional, reconstructionist or modern practice, and the Elements are indeed present and utilized in all traditions. It can also be, as it is for me, its own completely original, self-contained and self-defined path. It is the path of peeking behind all the named and well-presented curtains; of getting to the heart of All and of connecting to and honoring the mystical, essential building blocks of everything in existence, from the planet to our souls. No matter where your belief ultimately leads you or how you define it, the Elements are a part of it and, if nothing else, a great place to start.

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The Incredible, Elemental Egg

We are now between the time of Imbolc, when the fires in the belly quicken and hint at the coming rebirth, and Ostara, when that new birth of Spring occurs and the hibernating potential bursts forth in colorful blossoms and familiar bunnies and chicks.

Then there is the most familiar Egg: the supreme symbol of Ostara, Spring, new life and fertility. Yet it is so much more than that. Eggs have been painted, decorated, preserved, carved, crafted, offered, venerated and used as symbols and in rituals probably from the earliest days of humankind, certainly millennia before they came to be associated with the “borrowed” Easter of modern Christianity.

Eggs are the perfect symbol of life. They are literally life! All creatures begin as eggs in some form or another and all are composed of all four elements, which are perfectly represented by the parts of the egg: the shell is Earth, the membrane is Air, the white is Water, and the yolk is Fire.

It is easy to understand why so many different cosmologies and creation stories feature one or more “cosmic eggs” from which all beings, the world, indeed the whole universe are created. Several deities, such as Atargatis, are also believed to have been born from sacred eggs. Certain magical creatures are born from eggs under strange circumstances, such as the basilisk, which is hatched by a cockerel from a serpent’s egg.

There is the Greek Orphic Egg which hatched the first primordial being who created all the other gods, the Egyptian cosmic egg which birthed the sun god Ra, and the seven duck eggs hatched on the knee of the Finnish goddess Ilmatar, thus creating the various parts of the world.

Interestingly enough, the theory of the cosmic egg has a place in modern cosmological science. Current models suggest that over 13 billion years ago, the mass of all the universe was compressed into a singularity from which it expanded into its current state after the “Big Bang”. Could the Big Bang have been the moment of fertilization for the singular “egg”? The sparking action all life requires to ignite the potential contained in the seed which then expands and grows and even creates subsequent life?

More and more do quantum physics and other cutting-edge “modern” sciences begin to reflect, accept and even prove ideas that have existed in spirituality and mysticism since time immemorial; concepts that have been believed and perhaps truly known long before the advent of the tools and measuring devices mandated by science to verify the existence of anything.  

So how could the egg not be supremely sacred, and how could it not hold the key to the mysteries of all life and creation? Eggs contain life, potential for life, and they contain all the elements. So too then are the elements, from which everything is created, the keys to truth and understanding.

My kitchen altar is very simple and consists of a single candle, a very cute little plush cow with a tiny porcelain teacup and saucer, and a polished, egg-shaped onyx crystal resting in an egg cup. It serves as a focal point and constant reminder of all I have already said about eggs and then some. I can’t sing their praises enough! Particularly in the kitchen, where they are obviously most common. They are delicious, nutritious and wildly versatile.

If I may be allowed a slight, brief boast intended to inspire, I have mastered cooking eggs in almost every way. At least in the most classic and common ways: perfect pillows of poached eggs, delectable sunny fried or over-easy (the Sun on a cloudy day perhaps?) eggs, elegant baked eggs, fluffy scrambled eggs, eggs carefully boiled to any preferred doneness and saucy “eggs in purgatory”.


It is not only in cooking that eggs are versatile cornerstones, though this is certainly a magic unto itself. Eggs have always had many uses in spells, rituals and divination, all of which often overlap with cooking and eating them of course.

As one who reveres, studies, focuses on and, for want of a better term, “worships” the elements and all their forms and representations, the egg holds an incredible amount of power and sanctity for me. They are one of my favorite foods (along with dairy products, hence my little cow plushie) but also just one of my favorite objects and tools for magic. I have inscribed and buried eggs for various purposes, thrown them into lakes, meditated with them, whispered to them, and incorporated their form into shielding visualizations.

Eggs are important and enjoyed all year long and on all occasions and holidays, but their symbolism in regards to Spring, Ostara and rebirth are especially significant and make this a great time of year to focus on them and their powers. Especially if you have never quite considered or harnessed their elemental powers and associations, consider finding new ways to work eggs, their components, various myths and uses into your Spring Equinox rituals, meditations, meals and celebrations.


As the yolk represents fire, an elemental strongly associated with this quarter holiday, whip up an easy but delicious, golden hollandaise sauce and eat it on a seasonal vegetable such as asparagus sprinkled with a pinch of cayenne to increase your own creative fire and potency. Or if you perhaps need to cool a temper or eat lighter fare, make a cloud of scrambled egg whites instead. Many people compost their egg shells, but if this is something you aren’t able to do, still save your egg shells after any egg preparation, crush them up and return them to the earth with thanks.

Painting and dyeing eggs for traditional fun is all well and good, but try going deeper with the colors and symbols you use, and then use the completed eggs in a way that perhaps you never have before; bury them under or near your doorstep for protection, smash them against a tree in your own little “big bang” to release and expand your intentions and goals for the rest of the year, or empty one and decorate the hollow shell as beautifully as you can and place it on your altar as a physical representation of your shield or as a grounding tether, or in any other way that holds significance for you.

Whatever you do to celebrate the coming fires and joys of Spring, may the power of the cosmic, elemental egg bless and nourish your life with all the potential and powers of life itself!


© 2019 Meredith Everwhite - All Rights Reserved

 

Image credits: featured, "Eight World, Lament Over the Cosmic Egg" by Ernst Fuchs 1947
"l'Oeuf" (The Egg) by Odilon Redon 1885

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Meredith is an amateur writer, Tarot/oracle reader, and a semi-agnostic, pan/metatheistic, Pagan mage & mystic. Her elemental affinity has led her to become a devoted water priestess and the creator of the website/blog The Oracle of Water where she shares and writes about all things aqueous in the worlds of metaphysics, spirituality, mythology and occultism. Currently pursuing her certification in Michelle Hanson’s seashell-based “Ocean Oracle”, she is also working to develop an original elemental-themed divination system. She currently lives in North Carolina with her spritely feline familiar, Naia.  

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