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Drawing Down The Gods

One of the skills that used to be expected of an Adept Witch was Drawing Down the Gods. This is a process where the Priest or Priestess ‘steps aside’, and allows a God or Goddess to control and speak through them.

Typically, if a Goddess is drawn, it is called Drawing The Moon. If a God is drawn, it is said that you are Drawing The Sun. Traditionally, A Priestess Draws the Goddess and Priest Draws the God, but there is no rule that says it must be this way.

It used to be that Drawing was a gender specific event. Priests would only Draw the God, and Priestesses only the Goddess. This is no longer the case. Many have found that Drawing across gender can have benefits both to the Seekers talking to Deity, and the person who is Drawing.

In fact, I’ve seen many times where the Goddess has been Drawn into a Priest, and the God into a Priestess. Some people identify so well with their opposite gender that they prefer to Draw Opposite. If a Priest or Priestess is transgendered, which gender is the most appropriate?

Not to mention those Deities of mixed or androgynous gender.

It’s been a few years since I’ve Drawn Down, and longer since I attended such a ritual as a Seeker. The purpose of such a ritual is to give Seekers a chance to talk face to face with Deity. For the Priest or Priestess Drawing Down, it gives them the chance to become closer to Deity.

I talk to the Gods daily. I get answers to my questions, and signs as to what I should do, so I don’t require a Drawing Down to be close to the Gods. Most however, feel a desire to have an interaction with the Gods that they can’t or don’t get normally.

While I was at Dragonfest, I found myself being hit repeatedly over the head with the Metaphysical 2X4, as I stated in Old School Witchcraft. At first, I thought I should take over coordinating the Drawing Down there, but after talking to others, I’ve realized that what is really needed is something else.

The Drawing Down at Dragonfest started when a Priestess decided to try it for one of the main rituals, many years ago. So many people showed up, that the ritual went for several hours. The next year, she got two other Priestesses, and they Drew Down the Maiden, Mother, and Crone.

Again, so many people showed up that they couldn’t see everyone, even with each of them only seeing a third of the crowd. This lead to what some of us call the Triple Drawing Down with a half twist and a full gainer.

Basically, there may be up to 10 Priests or Priestesses Drawing Down Gods and Goddesses at the same time. It has become the most popular ritual at Dragonfest, with well over 100 people seeking to talk to the Gods.

Most Priests and Priestesses will never have to work with more than a few Seekers during a Drawing Down. It’s usually done in a Coven situation, for those of the Coven to talk to the Gods. Even with a small group, the Priest or Priestess may need to Draw for several hours, in order to give each Seeker the time they need, and accommodate the whole group of Seekers.

Probably the most asked question I get from those who attend a Drawing Down for the first time, is “are the Priests acting?” The answer to that is, if they’re acting, they aren’t really Drawing Down. When someone you know is Drawing, it’s obvious. Everything about them from the way they act, to their voice, changes.

I have even seen eye color change, while someone is Drawing Down.

The Priest or Priestess is not mentally present during the ritual. They may be aware of things at the time, as if they are standing off to the side, but with a few exceptions, all memory of what happened soon fades. If you ask a Priest or Priestess about an answer you got while they Drew Down, they most likely won’t have any idea what the question was, or what answer was given.

No one really knows why this is, but it is nearly universal. The answers aren’t coming from the Priest or Priestess; they are coming directly from the Divine. I remember the first time I Drew Down. I wasn’t supposed to.

I was backing up a friend and Priestess while she Drew Down at Dragonfest. At one point, the Lady looked at me, and asked if I was Drawing Down. I was shocked to say the least, and stammered that I wasn’t. The Lady told me that there was another entity with her besides the Priestess whose body she was inhabiting.

The next thing I knew, my friend Starr was standing over me saying, “No, you can’t go to the drum frenzy until Ken comes back!” Starr had been bringing Seekers to the Goddess, when she was informed that they would now be seeing both the God and the Goddess.

From all accounts, the God who had come into me, calling Himself Puck, was a Trickster.

The next year Alia, the Priestess I had been helping at the ritual for several years, asked if I wanted to try Drawing Down on purpose. The idea scared the crap out of me, but I accepted, with the promise from Alia, to give me instruction before Dragonfest.

As usual, it didn’t work that way. We got all the way to Dragonfest, and the day before the ritual, before I had the chance to talk to Alia about how to Draw Down. She was very reassuring, and insisted that I had nothing to worry about, since I had already done it.

The key to Drawing Down is preparation. This isn’t something you can go into and just do. At least not at first. There are Priests and Priestesses I know who can draw very quickly, but they’ve been doing it for years, and know what it feels like, and when it’s happening.

The process as I do it, takes nearly a day. I start with a solid breakfast. I may or may not feel like eating throughout the day, so I want to be sure I have a good breakfast. Some Draw the same Deity every time, some take the luck of the Draw. I prefer to try for the specific God or Goddess I’m looking for.

I do this by first thinking of the God I want to Draw. What are the attributes? What is it He or She is known for? I go through a thorough catalog of the God’s resume in my mind. I’ll do this until around noon. Knowing who it is you want to Draw, and who they are, prepares you to accept that particular Deity easier.

After I know I have the attributes of the God I want to Draw firmly in mind, I open myself to Deity. I don’t consciously Draw it to me; I simply accept that it is there. I begin to talk to the God I plan to draw. It’s a mental conversation without words.

I don’t really know how to explain this part; it’s a feeling more than anything. It’s a way of catching the Attention of the God, so He knows I want to work with him. One of the side effects to this is that I begin getting answers to questions others have.

I remember that first year I purposely Drew Down, I was at my camp. I had taken a chair out to the lake shore to be alone with my thoughts, when a friend came by to talk. She had been having problems with a man in her life, and wanted to talk.

Well before the end of her explaining what was going on, I knew the answer. On the heels of that, I knew that I couldn’t tell her the answer because she wasn’t yet ready to hear it. The odd thing was that I was only half listening to her because I was working on myself. The answers just came unbidden to me.

I didn’t realize this at the time. After eating something for dinner, I headed over to the camp where several of us were meeting before the ritual. I remember telling several there that I didn’t know if I was going to be able to do it. They all looked at me smiling, and said that I already was. Everything about me had changed, and Ken wasn’t really there.

They were right. When I got to the place I was to Draw Down, I sat in my chair, and don’t remember anything until the end of the ritual. I remember after it ended, wondering how my clothes got wet. Apparently it had rained.

If you are planning to run a Drawing Down, the most important thing to have is a Grounding area. Talking to the Gods is extremely emotional to most Seekers. A good majority of them may leave the Gods crying. You need to have a place and people, to make sure that the Seekers are again back to themselves. Warmth, food, and drink should be provided.

After the Drawing Down, the Priests and Priestesses also need to ground, and even more, they need to Brain Dump. We used to head back to the RV of one of our group, and snack, and drink juice, and talk. This talking is very important. No one sees everything that happens during the ritual, and those who are Drawing will only have the vaguest idea of what went on.

Those who Drew Down may have questions about images and snippets of conversation retained from the ritual. Those who had not Drawn Down, but were nearby, may be able to help them make sense of these events. Once the Priests and Priestesses feel like they have an answer, the event is forgotten within a few hours.

The process of Drawing Down isn’t difficult. It’s actually very easy. That’s the problem. Sometimes it’s so easy that when you do it the first time, you may get scared of ‘losing yourself’. When you feel another entity begin to take control, it’s normal to want to snap out of it by retaking control.

The hard part is letting it happen. Before you can Draw Down, you have to be confident in yourself, and your abilities. You also have to be confident in the God or Goddess you plan to Draw Down. The Gods will not take control from you; it must be given to them. You must invite them to take over.

The moment you work at taking control back, you’ll have it. This is one of the few times where you must relax, and remain that way. If you tense up mentally, you’ll be snapped back into reality. I can’t tell you what it’s going to be like when you Draw Down. It’s different for everyone, and can be different every time.

I have gone away, with no idea where I was, or for how long, I have also been present, and felt like I was in full control the entire time, with words just coming from my mouth. The one constant has always been that whatever words came from me, they weren’t mine, and I have no idea where they came from.

Drawing Down takes practice. It’s a skill that every Priest and Priestess should have. When you Draw Down, your body has abilities and skills that you don’t normally possess. Drawing Down allows you to touch Deity in a way like no other.

You get the chance to become Deity for a time, and know the unknowable. That is probably why no one remembers what took place during the time they Drew Down. After all, human troubles seem irrelevant, when you share yourself so completely with Deity.

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