A couple of weeks before Samhain/Day of the Dead, I had an insight.
This year, on our pilgrimage, to visit the ancestors, we going to perform The Headless ritual in the graveyard. I’m not sure where this insight came from, perhaps I was reading again too much Crowley’s stuff again.
When I asked M what does he think about performing The Headless ritual for our day of the dead extravaganza, he said it was a good idea and we should give it a go.
Later on that week, I had another insight – we must sing the headless ritual. When I say sing, I meant singing the power words.
The tune that was stuck in my head was – Schuberts’ Ave Maria…
Now, I can sing, not too bad actually, and when I’m really going for it, I can make some very cool shamanic howling, but I’m certainly not Maria Callas.
We arrived at the old farmhouse on Samhain eve, exhausted from the long drive, neither of us feel like performing any ritual, instead, we end up snoozing in front of the TV.
We agreed to do try the next day on our visit to the cemetery.
After a week or so of practising singing the power words, I felt more than ready.
The next morning, we drove to the cemetery armed with a candle, joss sticks, and a printed version of the Bornless ritual. As soon as we start driving the weather changed from a nice sunny morning into a grey and wet one. As we turned a corner, the most beautiful rainbow appeared and a thought crossed my mind:
The Serpent and the Rainbow
The Serpent and the Rainbow, our two ancient Haitian serpent deities that probably stand at the top of the Haitian Vodou system.
The serpent – Dambala Wedo is the ancient sky father, he is the origin of life and the ancient source of wisdom. His wife, Ayida Wedo is a water serpent with rainbow-coloured scales and her symbol is the rainbow.
The story goes like that – Dambala Wedo gave rain to the world, as the raindrops fell from the sky they formed a rainbow colour. Danbala fell in love with Ayida the rainbow serpent. They married and joined as a double helix of snakes, giving birth to the human race. (from Vodou Visions by Sallie Ann Glassman).
The rainbow reminded me why the Headless ritual would be good for this particular work (part from the urge to sing it). In the second part of the ritual that sometimes comes under the title ‘Assuming of the God form’, you can find a line that says: My name is a heart encircled by a serpent. So the headless ritual has a serpent in it and somehow also felt connected to the energies of this time of the year.
By the time we got to the cemetery, it was very wet and we could sense a tempest was coming which reminded us that Set is a storm deity after all, aka the voice of the storm. So we lit the candle and the incense but again, something about the timing of the ritual didn’t feel right, the weather so bad we got back in the car and raced for home.
I was looking for a picture that will capture the essence of the Headless ritual, and my research led me to a very familiar one that can represent the line – My name is a heart encircled by a serpent, but also connected to the double helix formed by the serpent and the rainbow I mentioned earlier.
The more I think and study the picture and my relationship with the deity in it, the realization of why we didn’t get to perform the headless ritual as planned, was sinking in. In my opinion, preparing for a ritual sometimes is just as good and powerful as the performance itself and by the time of the ritual, sometimes you feel that things are already in motion.
For the best part of about 3 weeks, all I did was explore the ritual in so many ways so I would find the best way to sing it. In that period of time, I read it over and over again and sang the words of power numerous times. By the time we arrived at the specific date planned for it, I felt saturated and full. I didn’t want nor feel the need to do it. This resulted in a very quiet and peaceful space in my head, something like the feeling of when a ritual is completed and we say the famous words
IT IS DONE!
So our friend Baphomet here, got a double helix sort of serpents, possibly symbolizing the rising of the kundalini through the lingam wisdom. Both of the serpents heads point in the direction of the sternum, which is the protector of the heart.
When we prepare for a ritual, to make it successful, we need to put ‘our heart’ into it, some will say we need to put ‘our heart and soul’, but this can be open for discussion. However, by putting ‘our heart’ into the preparations, we are consumed by the ritual, the more we study we become one with it, and we start to initiate certain elements’ energies and powers into motion, while at the time doing so we are probably not aware of it at all. By the time the day arrives, there is nothing more to do.
The Bornless One Ritual
“I summon you, Headless One,
Who created earth and heaven,
Who created night and day,
You who created light and darkness;
You are Unas, the beautiful whom none has ever seen;
You are Iabas;
You are Iapos;
You have distinguished the just from the unjust;
You have made female and male;
You have revealed seed and fruits;
You have made men love each other
And hate each other.”
“I am Moses your prophet to whom you have transmitted your mysteries celebrated by Israel; you have revealed the moist and the dry and all nourishment; hear me.”
“I am the messenger of the beautiful Pharaoh Unas
This is your true name,
which has been transmitted to the prophets of Israel.
Hear me, Hear me,
arbathiaô reibet athelebersêth [ara]
blatha albeu ebenphchi chitasgoê ibaôth iaô
Listen to me and turn away this daimon”
“I call upon you, awesome and invisible god with an empty spirit,
modoriô phalarchaô ooo
Holy Headless One. Deliver us
From the daimon which restrains us,
roubriaô mari ôdam baabnabaôth
ass adônai aphniaô
Mighty Headless One,
From the daimons that restrain.
mararraiô ioêl kotha athorêbalo abraôth,
aôth abraôth basym isak sabaôth iaô”
“He is lord of the gods;
He is the lord of the inhabited world;
He is the one whom the winds fear;
He is the one who made all things
By the commands of his voice.”
“Lord, King, Master, Helper, save the Soul-Ba (Psyche)
oo yy ey oo yy
Good messenger of the God
anlala lai gaia
apa diachanna choryn”
Assumption of the God form
“I am the headless daimon with my sight in my feet;
[I am] the mighty one [who possesses] the immortal fire;
I am the truth who hates the fact that unjust deeds
are done in the world;
I am the one who makes the lightning flash and the thunder roll;
I am the one whose sweat is the heavy rain, which falls upon the earth that it might be inseminated;
I am the one whose mouth burns completely;
I am the one who begets and destroys;
I am the Favour of the Aion;
My name is a heart encircled by a serpent;
Come forth and follow.”
“Subject to me all daimons,
So that every daimon,
Whether of the heavens
Or the air
Or under the earth
Terrestrial or aquatic,
Might be obedient to me
And every enchantment and scourge
Which is from God.”
When you want to finish do so by for example repeating the first part of Tankhem opening and then a “license to depart”:
“I release any spirits entrapped by this working,
May you go in peace to your lovely abodes.
Farewell Headless One,
Lord of the inhabited world,
The son of Nuit
Leader of the company of heaven in their diurnal motion,
Senebty, great Bull of Ombos.”
After which pour any remaining offerings such as those of the chalice on earth and clear equipment, extinguish lamps etc .
This version of the Bornless ritual was taken from Egyptian magick by Mogg Morgan
Inspired by the work of the 4th head, The Serpent, from Apophis by Michael Kelly.
Another interesting view on the serpent, you will find in the YouTube link below