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Liminality: The Color Out of Space, The Shadow Out of Time

May 3, 2018

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.

Liminal space is a concept that is integral to our spiritual work and is also ever present in our mundane lives. We encounter the liminal when we cast a circle or perform a Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram, when we meditate, shapeshift or anytime we enter a transitional period of life. It’s the spaces between the words of this essay. Even the morning commute can be a liminal time. This liminal time and space can be defined as a location between two or more clearly defined locations. We perceive liminality while practicing the mindfulness of our present state. By tuning into the “in-betweenness” of the moment, we surrender to the liminality of our existence.

As spiritual beings, our own earthly lives are liminal.  We live out our current existence on a material plane, surrounded by an elusive, yet apparent spiritual realm. The spiritual realm beckons to us in dreams, artwork, music and film. It is this beckoning that we answer when we make the plunge into spirituality. While we can recognize this connection to a spiritual or astral realm, it seems to evade us. Through the aeons, spiritual explorers, or as Peter Carrol might label them Psychonauts, have plundered the nether regions of consciousness with the goal of aligning themselves with a higher understanding of the world around them. Even in the last century, great epiphanies have been realized and recorded in too many occult tomes to mention.

This brings us to a metaphorical crossroads of exploration, a liminal time of consciousness that is calling us to our own individual, spiritual quests. How do we answer the call to connect ourselves with our true will and destiny? Through self-discovery and initiative, true enlightenment is achievable. In many cultures, liminal spaces are described. Look at the Bifrost of the Norse tradition or Da’ath of the Cabalists. These are both liminal spaces. There are many other examples, but my point is that finding a resonating liminal space is essential in creating and designating a location from which to launch. Hedge witchcraft is a specific branch of witchcraft, with the purpose of “hedge-crossing”, or walking the path between the spirit and material realms. This path is just an illustration of one route to initiation with liminality.

After experimenting with liminal space in a ritual or ceremonial setting, it becomes apparent that recognizing and honoring liminal time and space in the material world is an important link in connecting our spiritual lives with our mundane existence. This is accomplished through practice in mindfulness: identifying liminal space in day to day life. Whether this liminal space presents itself in the time we prepare ourselves for the work day or in the liminal time of evening as we wind down our bodies and minds before bed, liminal space can become something we harness, to invoke a daily spiritual practice. In concluding these liminal thoughts, I encourage you to find the liminality of you own incarnation and explore its depths and recesses. May your journeys be blessed with understanding and compassion.

Love is the law. Love under will.

Author: Samuel McCabe is a visual artist, educator, operative magician and Tarot reader at Ritualcravt. He has ten years experience with ceremonial magick in group and solitary settings. He is currently researching the origins of magick through grimoires, mythology and anthropology. Samuel teaches using a project-based approach that inspires creativity and independence in his students.