Devotional Rite for Hekate Phosphoros
Note: First I had in mind to give different rites for different aspects of Hekate, but so far it stayed with the rite for Hekate Phosphoros. So I edited the text.
So far my articles in the series- understanding Hekate- were quite theoretical. Before I will continiue with the articles I will give some instructions for a simple devotional rite. These rites help to get a connection to Hekate, to feel and experience her on a personal level. These devotional rites are designed for a regular (at best daily) use. And are short enough for this.
For the devotional rites you will need a shrine for Hekate and a statue of her or a framed picture/image. Put the statue/image into the centre of the shrine. The shrine can be quite simple, like in the picture above. Or ou can add more elements and symbols. That is your choice. You will need as essential stuff:
Statue/Image of Hekate
Living flame (candle, tealight or oillamp)
Pitcher/bowl with saltwater
Plate/bowl with dried flowers/blossoms
Incense burner and incense.
You will need an offering bowl. This can be just a bowl in which you give the offerings during the rite.
A living flame is essential, too (tea light, candle, oil lamp). If you use just one living flame, two, three ore more is up to you. But one living flame is essential (it symbolises the divine fire).
The bowl/plate with flowers/blossoms (from my experience Hekate likes lavender, jasmine, rose)- is a symbol of Hekates dominion over the earth/land.
Put some water into the pitcher (or the second bowl) and add a small bit of sea salt into the water. This pitcher/bowl symbolises her dominion over the sea.
Prepare some incense. This can be simple incense sticks or resins and herbs that you burn on charcoal- or on an incense lamp, too. If you use incense sticks get some of good quality (from my experience Hekate likes the smell of jasmine).
The shrine can be very simple. Put the image of the Goddess in the centre of the shrine. If you use one living flame- put this before the image to the centre. If you use two flames you can put them to the right and left side of the image.
Put the offering bowl before the image. And arrange the bowl/plate with flowers/blossoms, the pitcher with saltwater and the incense on the shrine in a way that it looks nice. That is the essential stuff on the shrine- you can decorate it with other symbols if you want it.
Before you begin the devotional rite you can clean yourself and the room where you do the devotional rite with the techniques you use in general. For example with the burning of cleansing herbs (like sage)- or the sprinkling of yourself and the room with blessed water.
The devotional rite for Hekate Phosphoros:
Part 1: Lighting the flames.
Light the living flame(s) on your shrine. Speak: “I light these divine flame(s) in the name of the great Goddess Hekate, may her divine fire be present on this shrine, may her light bring protection and blessings.”
Focus for a moment on the flame(s) see and feel the light that the flame(s) create. Watch the fire. See and feel the atmosphere that the fire creates on your shrine.
Part 2: Blessing of yourself and the offerings.
Close your eyes, take three deep breaths and relax. Calm down. Put your hands to your breast in a way that your dominant hand lays on your other hand.
Imagine the stars burning bright above you in the sky (even if it is day- the stars are there).
Imagine that their silver light flows down into your body and fills you out. You begin to shine in a silver light.
Imagine the depths of the earth below you. Imagine a golden shining serpent that crawls up to you. This serpent is pure life source- the serpent is climbing in coils around your body and the life force of the earth fills you out. You begin to glow in a golden light. Imagine and feel the ouranic fire of the stars and the chtonic serpent power filling you out. Imagine that in your breast a spark begins to shine, the light of this spark gets brighter and brighter until a radiant sun burns within your breast.
Open your eyes and see the shrine before your. Hold your hands over the shrine and imagine that the ouranic and chtonic powers flow through your hands into the offerings. Imagine that they begin to shine. Speak again and again the ephesian letters: Askion, Kataskion, Lix, Tetrax, Damnameneus, Aisia.
And imagine that a sphere of light surrounds you and your shrine. The shrine is the centre of this sacred sphere.The divine fire of your shrine flame(s) is filling this divine sphere around you.
If you feel it is enough bring your hand back to your breast. And stop to speak the ephesian letters.
Burn some incense and say: “I burn this incense for the great Hekate, may this smell welcome her on this shrine”.
Part 3: Calling the Goddess- Hekate Phosphoros.
Close your eyes. Have your hands again on your breast. Relax and Imagine a beautiful young maiden. She wears a white dress with golden ornaments, on her feet she has golden sandals. Her hair is brown but shines with an light of gold and an aura of light is around the Goddess. In her hands she holds two long burning torches. The torches are decorated with wreaths of ivy and the flames of the torches burn bright. On her head she has a shining golden diadem.
Imagine that she stands behind your shrine.
Move your hands from your breast and raise them up to the sky. Begin to whisper again and again- IO Phosphoros, IO Hekate… whisper this again and again with closed eyes. Imagine the Goddess standing on your shrine while you whisper this again and again. Let your words get louder and louder (or as loud as you are able to speak them in your home) and when you feel it is enough, open your eyes and speak the prayer:
“Hekate Phosphoros, bright shining queen, torchbearer, divine maiden, shining star in darkest night, be here and bring me your protection, your light and your blessings. Bring your divine fire and bring light into the darkness with your sacred torches.”
Bring your hands back to your breast and just feel and open yourself to her presence. Focus on your inner view of Hekate and watch the shrine to with your physical eyes.
Part 4: Offerings to the Goddess.
Burn again some incense and take the incense burner (or incense stick) into your hands and let it circle three times over the shrine and let the smoke touch the image of the Goddess. Speak: “I offer you this incense- by your power over the starry sky.”
Put the incense back to the shrine.
Take the pitcher with water and pour three times water into the offering bowl. Speak: “I offer you this blessed water, by your power of the salty sea”.
Put the pitcher back to your shrine.
Take the plate with the flowers and sprinkle three times flowers over the shrine, over the statue/image and three times into the offering bowl. Speak: “I offer you these flowers, by your power over the fertile earth.”
Put the plate back to the shrine.
Take the offering bowl in your hands and hold it in front of the image. Speak:
“Mighty Hekate, mistress over earth, sea and sky, bringer of divine fire.
Take these offerings. Bring your protection, blessings and light into my home and into me. Io Phosphoros, Io Phosphoros, Io Phosphors.”
Put the offering bowl back and put your index finger of your dominant hand into the bowl. Sprinkle the statue/image with the water from the offering bowl. And then touch your brow with the finger to bless yourself.
Part 5: Thanking and ending the rite.
Now you can meditate, enjoy the presence of Hekate, do divination, play instruments, dance or do other devotional acts to Hekate. Or thank her and close the rite.
Thank her with your own words. Ask her to guide you with her light. To protect you and your home and to bring her blessings.
Imagine that she disappears from the shrine- but a spark of her presence, power and energy stays connected to the statue/image and in the flames on your shrine.
Imagine that the sacred sphere around you begins to fade away, it flows into the flames on your shrine and into your heart.
Touch the ground with your hands and imagine that all energy that is to much flows down into the earth. Imagine that the bright sun in your chest begins to transform into a tiny lightning spark.
This devotional rite can be practiced within 10-15 minutes after you have settled into it and know it well. Do this devotional rite as regualar as possible and focus on your feelings, emotions and your inner view during the rite.
You can add more elements to create a longer more eleborate rite. Or add the offering of food, oil, milk, honey or other offerings on the Noumenia, full moon and Deipnon- or on other times when you think it is necessary.
The offerings of water, flowers and incense are connected to her dominion over sea, earth and sky. Instead of flowers you can use herbal mixtures, wheat or even seeds like sesame- or poppy seeds. I usually use dried lavender flowers or dried jasmine flowers. or a compination of rose, lavender and jasmine flowers.