The four basic tools of the Witch are aligned with the energies of the elements. They are the Athame, the Wand, the Chalice and the Pentacle and they serve to deepen the connection to the elements within the Witch as well as the energies that surround him/her.
For the sake of generalization certain of the tools and their elemental energies are associated predominantly with either the God or Goddess. In reality, however, the God and Goddess are present within each of the elements and have some component within each of the tools that serves as its own place of polarity. For example, swords are most often attributed to the God in representation of the phallus; the penetrating nature of their action (being surrounded by the womb of energy that surrounds the space in which the blade is cutting through as it moves). However, many Warrior Goddesses wield the sword as a modality of transformative action.
The Earth is most often associated within the scope of the Goddess and the gifts of her body; but under the care of the Horned God, all earthly life is protected and maintained. The Pentacle represents that grounding force containing all the elements, and these are found both within the province of God and Goddess.
Air – The God
These tools bring clarity and inspiration of mind to the magickal working. They are the blades that cauterize, clear away debris and work as the seed implanted within the fabric of creation towards manifest outcome. The sacred Circle of Art is traditionally cast with the Athame. Air and its connection to the mind serve as the flow of inspiration and breath in the energy of the casting.
Additionally, the action of scribing the Circle and open the Quarter Gates makes use of the directed flow of energy that is achieved through the tip of the blade. The call to presence is “punctuated”, if you will by the piercing of the veils that separate the mundane from the magickal; the physical from the ephemeral.
Fire – The God
These tools serve to quicken and enliven the energy being worked upon. The wand holds the fires and will of the Witch. Unlike the Athame, which comes to a point of focal energy in outpour, the wand may direct the energy from either end. Both ends serve as terminals and often a wand will have a crystal on top and/or bottom of the length of the tool. The Law of Correspondence- “As above, so below” is affirmed by the energy of the wand, with each drawing upon the other in the wielding of its force. Fire waxes and wanes in its dynamics and so too the fiery energy attributed to the wand/staff work in this manner.
Water – The Goddess
These tools act as the container and womb of creative effort. They hold or contain the primal state of being as life evolves, heals and transforms. It is the bell of the chalice or cauldron that receives the varied materials that are placed within it. The energetic qualities are that of ebb and flow, the sides being the circle of continuum and the top open to the influx of the breath of inspiration. All spiral downward towards the base of manifest form and combine to create something fluid and moving in nature.
Earth – The Goddess
This tool connects with the grounding and foundational nature of earth and all the bounty that is offered in the natural world through the combined efforts of earth and the other three elements. In this form of the Pentagram we see the circle of eternity that binds within it the polarized quarters and energies of the four foundational elements. At its core center is Spirit, the place of synthesis, anchor and filter for all that moves towards this place of magnetism.
The Tool of Great Price