After the Sacred Circle and the Besom sweep have been accomplished, calling the Quarters is generally the next step when preparing the Sacred Circle for ritual. The four Quarters are associated with the Four Cardinal points of North, East, South and West, as well as the four Elements (Earth, Air, Fire and water) associated with each corner.
Which Quarter one starts at is dependent on the tradition that one embraces. But remember parents, there is no right or wrong way, only the way that works for the individual and/or group. Paganism is not about rigid dogma but rather about the freedom of the individual and their spiritual growth. Even within a gathering such as a coven, each member or coven mate is an individual. When teaching children the ways of paganism, it is advisable to give them the freedom of expression that is so important to personal and spiritual growth. When calling the Quarters, many different entities can be called upon, again it is dependent upon the tradition one embraces as to what entity is called upon.
The Elements are known as follows:
North – Earth East – Air South – Fire West – Water
These Elements are broken down further as:
North – Gnomes East – Sylphs South – Salamanders West – Undines
And yet even further by calling upon the Kings of each realm, they are:
North – Boreas East – Eurius South – Notus West – Zephyrus
From the Greeks we get the four Anemoi, Boreas was the north wind and bringer of cold winter air, Notus was the south wind and bringer of the storms of late summer and autumn, and Zephyrus was the west wind and bringer of light spring and early summer breezes; Eurus, was the east wind but did not represent a season in Greek mythology.
Within the Enochian tradition created by John Dee, one would call upon the four archangels or Watchtowers as they are known. These are:
North – Auriel East – Raphael South – Michael West – Gabriel
To give you an example of how traditions may vary the Native Americans also honored the four elements and directions. Their Medicine Wheel ceremony places the element of Earth in the south, Water in the west, Air in the North and Fire in the east.
Within the ancient Egyptian beliefs, the minor deities that were associated with the God Horus, “Shemsu – Heru” (children of Horus) also represented one each of the four Cardinal Points. And they are:
North - Hapi, (dog-headed) East - Tuamutef, (jackal-headed) South - Amset, (a bearded man)
West - Qebhsennuf, (hawk-headed)
The whole intent behind calling or evoking the Quarters by whatever name or tradition, is to invite these entities into and/or around the perimeter of the Sacred Circle in a concerted effort to enhance the strength and protection of the Sacred Circle. When calling the Quarters, one focuses their intent and purpose into the calling/manifestation.
Not only does the intent and purpose, empower the energies being worked with but it also creates a special bond between the practitioner and the Quarters being called or evoked.
In many cases the Quarters will be marked with candles of a corresponding color.
The colors are generally Green for the North, Yellow for the East, Red for South, and Blue for the West.
As each Quarter is evoked the candle for that Quarter is lit.
Calling the quarters, like all aspects of paganism, is dependent on the will, direction and goals of the individual.
Following are examples of calling the Quarters in some of their various forms:
Evoking the Four Winds:
Eastern winds arise and come forth! Blow over and embrace us in the newness of change. For spring, it harkens. The Earth, She is awakening from her winter’s slumber.
Southern winds arise and come forth! Blow over and embrace us in your warmth. Lend each of us your strength, now and in the bright days to follow.
Western winds arise and come forth! Blow over and embrace us in your cool moisture. Cleanse each of us of any thoughts or concerns that may nag at our minds and hearts.
Northern winds arise and come forth! Blow over and embrace us in your cool energy. Free each of us from any of those things that may weigh heavily upon our hearts.
Dragon Quarter Calls:
Mighty Dragon, Guardian of the realms of the East. Your tongue is a sharp sword, cutting with the knowledge of the arcane. Your spirit flows as graceful as a swift in flight. Purify us with truth. Blessed Be.
Mighty Dragon, Guardian of the realms of the South, your breath is aflame with the fires of inspiration and passion. Your spirit is searing and fervent. Purify us with Love. Blessed Be.
Mighty Dragon, Guardian of the realms of the West, your coils are the cleansing healing waves that nurture the soul. Your spirit lunges, leaps and splashes like a Talbot at play. Purify us with pulsing tides. Blessed Be.
Mighty Dragon, Guardian of the realms of the North, your talons run like roots into the earth, giving you infinite strength. Your spirit is substantial, hard and pure like a clear crystal. Purify us with persistent wisdom. Blessed Be
Each of these Dragons has a secret name that they are also invoked with. A suggestion is that anyone using these invocations, meditate to find an appropriate name for each Guardian and use it along with or instead of the words "Mighty Dragon".
Parents, please keep in mind that the preceding Quarter Calls are samples only. Like any energy work done in the Mystic Arts and paganism, the best material is that which you write yourself. Even better, if you are looking to include your children within your pagan practices, it may be a good exercise to include their thoughts and suggestions when writing evocations for calling the Quarters.
By doing this, you are expanding the child’s comprehension of how paganism evolves as a spiritual path. And as a by-product, you are including their energies into your family practice.
Some suggested questions for Parents and Teachers to ask children:
Within the Enochian system, East is represented by which Arch Angel?
What three aspects are necessary to call the Quarters?
Notus is the King of which Quarter and/or Direction?
Which Quarters are associated with which Elements?
What kind of name does each dragon have?
When evoking the West winds, it embraces us in cool _______.
Salamanders represent which Element or Quarter?
The color for the East Quarter is generally ___________.
From the Egyptian, Hapi represented which Quarter?
Undines represent which Quarter or Element?