Urban Shamanism- Working With Celestial Energies
On the magickal level they cast a spell using a bowl containing a laminated city logo, rainwater gathered from around the Guildhall, dyed green to symbolise council money, a cutout foam rubber outline of the proposed Tower, and a picture of the planned monorail cut from the local newspaper. The bowl was lined with the city logo, the symbolic tower and monorail put in, and the water was then added with the statement “May these fade like the foam on the water” and the spell was left to work.
Meanwhile there was an open meeting of the council to discuss the monorail protest by local residents who were not happy about the effect it might have on their day to day life and property values. Since I was one of the few Pagans who felt comfortable giving evidence in front of a council committee I turned up in full ritual regalia only to find the ‘presentation’ part of the meeting had finished only minutes before. I did ask the officials running it if I could still say my piece, but they declined, saying that I could enter a written deposition instead. However, this might have worked out to my advantage because this by-play caused enough of a low-grade commotion to draw the attention of the committee in my direction. Their reactions when they saw me were worthy of being on one of those popular “Funny Video” shows. As soon as they saw me they froze as they took in the fact that there was indeed someone dressed in woodland camouflage robes, carrying a leather Stetson in one hand, and an oak staff in the other standing just across the chamber from them. There were some following arguments in favour of having the monorail in Portsmouth made by several important- looking people, but it seemed to me that the committee was a little distracted by my presence. Nobody seemed inclined to ask me to leave so I stood there for the rest of the meeting in full view of the committee. As an added mind clouder I balanced my Stetson on the top of my staff and focussed on it taking on the appearance of a second person even more strikingly outfitted than myself’
The Glamorie seemed to work well as several of the people in the committee appeared to be looking as much as the staff with the hat on as they did with me. The upshot of the hearing was that the monorail was not given the go- ahead for that financial year. I think it might have helped that I was such an effective distraction from the person trying to make a case for the monorail’s inception that council members might not have even heard them.
Later, checking the spell, we discovered that the picture of the monorail had disintegrated, and the water had been soaked up by the partially crumbled sponge tower. As a final act to earth the spell a hole was dug in a nearby park and the sponge buried in it to keep the magick working. The other items were cleansed and put away for further use if needed.
The result of these actions was mixed. The monorail idea was postponed every year after a review, eventually being dropped for good in 2006. The tower did come to fruition, but only after costing much more than was originally planned, effectively sucking up the potential money for the monorail project. The Tower itself was built, but had many problems associated with it including unfounded fears about the quality of the concrete being used, and at least one company going into recievership while working on it. Because of its shape - and because it was finished several years after the Millennium – the tower was renamed “Spinnaker Tower”, which many Pagans suggested was how it avoided the same fate as the monorail. There still seems to be a certain amount of influence wielded by the spell though, as on opening day the outside lift ground to a halt 100 foot above the ground trapping the city council project manager, and representatives of the companies that built the tower and the lift for around an hour. Engineers had to abseil in to rescue them and, to quote the current Wikipedia entry; “Some, including the franchise's chief executive, felt it was rather fitting that these particular people had been trapped.” The outside lift remained inoperable until 2012 when it was dismantled and removed.
From this example, and those shown in the previous article you can see how effective working with the “Higher” or “Celestial” energies in the city can be. Some Urban Shamans I have worked with have advised that communicating with the Deva, or organising energy of the city itself, might have been a more elegant means of bringing about the desired effect of the spell. In the next article we will look at communicating with these entities, along with the Deities and thoughtforms that have made the urban environment their home.
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