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Elemental Balancing

by valerie walker
©2006

Q: For about the span of seven months I've been studying Feri...Although, try as I might, I am uninformed on the subject of elemental balancing as self-development that was mentioned on Feri FAQ. I've tried to research as much as I could on the internet with no success. It would be highly appreciated if you would give me some information on elemental balancing.

A: There are several different techniques in Feri which are called "elemental balancing", most of which I was never taught by my initiators. However, since Feri practice is a toolkit for building a personal belief-system (at least in my view), you are quite free to take whatever you know or can find out from other sources and incorporate them into your own practices. And, of course, you can always engage in creating your own from what your own dreams and intuitions tell you.

Think about it: the classical elements of earth, air, fire, water, and spirit/akasha are dealt with during such things as casting the circle/calling the Guardians, pentacle work, and so on. Try this: Google "elemental pentacle" in image search and see how very many different placements on the pentacle you get for the elements--with the exception of the fifth element (spirit/akasha), which is univerally found at the top. And take a look at the following schematic. The horizontal elements of earth, air, fire, and water seem to spin around the vertical of spirit, making this a sphere rather than a circle.

Then take a look at the things in your life which correspond to earth (physical, action, the body), air (intellectual speculation, mentation, Talker), fire (spirit, Kundalini, Godself), and water (emotion, Fetch). See which ones seem to dominate your life, and which seem to have almost no action at all, which indicates they need more attention. and take particular note of the paths between the points to see where the blockages occur. Then do what seems necessary in your life to achieve a balance.

I know this is pretty vague, but it's so very personal that I can't predict what techniques will work for you. Many people find working the Iron and Pearl Pentacles does it for them. To this I would add a third pentacle, the Devotion Pentacle--see my article on the three souls and three pentacles, which contains the above illustration (among others) and gives a few specific exercises to do. Let me know if this works for you, and if you come up with any original practices that might work for other people--I'm always excited to know about new discoveries and creations, especially if they're spun off from something I came up with. Makes me feel like I'm actually doing some good in the world.





In the two diagrams above, I have shown the problems I see with blockages in flow of the energies of the Iron and Pearl Pentacles respectively. Consistently blocked, these energies will give rise to the unfortunate psychological characteristics depicted. Conversely, the diagrams can be used as a diagnostic tool. If someone is needy, feels inadequate, competitive, and prone to attacks of rage or shame, it is fairly clear that he is blocked in expressing his Pride appropriately, or even of admitting that it belongs to him and is a perfectly natural attribute rather than one of the seven deadly sins. Likewise, realizing that he has consistently unrealistic expectations of relationships will hopefully lead to his working to keep the Law and Love points in proper balance, through meditation and other exercises on these points.

Where To Put The Elements
I happen to live in a place where West is water, because I can see the Pacific Ocean out my western windows. And since there are mountains directly to the East and the North of us‹we are perched on a mountain, actually, so either would work for earth, and our fireplace is on the South wall of the house, not to mention the deserts being south of us ... I am able to use the directions which I learned originally from Starhawk, which are based on traditional attributions which work in western Europe. If I were living on the east coast, I might wish to switch Air and Water to correspond with my actual location. And a friend of mine who lives in the middle of Canada feels that she could use just about any element for any direction, since there is prairie on all sides of her for miles and miles. So go with what you feel works in your specific location.

I like to think of East as air because that's the direction I fly when I'm going to visit people; it's the whole breadth of the country with the Great Plains, the Great Lakes, the flatlands, cornfields, and so on. It's "back east," land of memory, beyond the mountains. And further back, my childhood in England, and even further back in time, Egypt and the ancient lands, the mysterious East. The scarab beetle rolls the rising sun over our hill, and, exhausted, lets it roll by itself down the sky to the ocean in the west, the realm of night.

....Maybe that's why I like living here in California.