Are Rituals Even Needed?

This question keeps popping up in my head for a few days now and I’m wondering what your thoughts are.

The reason this is bothering me is because I sometimes don’t have the time, or am not in the right state of mind to make a more elaborate type of thing.

Part of my question was answered by @Nagash 's thread:

This kinda partially validated my point of view as I too always thought that once you’ re tuned into the spirit realm, there’s an invisible connection that acts like a “highway”. They here and feel you.

So, if I am able to communicate with and even attract different entities/spirits through my thoughts, why all the buzz about rituals?

Why are there such detailed instructions on what candles to use, where to place them, how often to chant an enn, when tu turn left and what to wear?

I kinda get that a well thought out ritual gets the practitioner in certain state of mind, but why the warnings that if it’s not done “correctly” it won’t work (or even might be harmful).

But performing such rituals just for the sake of doing it without feeling the connection? What if I just feel like lighting a simple candle (or not) and quietly state what I want?

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy reading instructions on such elaborate rituals, and sometimes putting in more effort and preparation into my own. But then I often feel pressured to “do it right” and end up doing nothing at all. And I think many new practitioners also get overwhelmed and scared.

So, to make a long story short: Why rituals & what’s the “benefit” of performing them?


I dont think rituals are needed %95 of the time but I cant answer other questions :laughing:


That’s totally fine :slightly_smiling_face::+1:t4:


In my opinion, rituals are needed to separate the worlds… to allow our minds to operate in the ritual, in an altered state of consciousness, while working from a different/normal consciousness in our daily lives.

In itself the ritual is not needed for the success of whatever outcome is expected from it. If we can contact spirits in the ritual then we can do that without a ritual. The real ritual happens in one’s mind. Unless we’re following specific tradition that depends on the ceremonial aspect as part of the process that brings the desired outcome. Such as western ceremonial magick or eastern religious witchcraft.

Simply calling the spirit is enough for it to hear and answer. No sigils or incense or candles… but each element we use, in addition to the call, should be there for a reason or a purpose. If not, then it would only waste energy and distract our concentration.


Exactly how I feel about it. Thank you.

Which would be subjective for each practitioner, as we all have different associations with certain items, right?

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Yes I believe that explains it. The design and structure of each spell or ritual is highly subjective for that reason.


If that’s the case, then why the warnings to follow instructions to a T? I don’t own any grimoirs written by someone else (yet), but I came across quite a few instructions and descriptions of rituals/spells that state if you differ away from the original, things may/will go wrong.

Now, I don’t let that scare me, it’s just that I prefer doing my own thing and infuse my workings with my own words and energy. How would a bought grimoir benefit me and my journey?

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It depends how you look at it I think. From one side, each element in the spell is symbolic… sends a message to the deep mind. Skipping one element would deliver incomplete message or a wrong one, causing different outcome than the desired intention.

From another side, according to traditional witchcraft, each element is there because it’s religiously or traditionally “required” and must be there, or the spirit or deity won’t respond or may respond in a negative way because they could feel offended etc

I think those are the main two reasons.


I’ve manifested some things with just intent alone, but things like deification (evocation and invocation not included) shadow work (in a lot of cases), and the like, require rituals and spells.

I agree with you on the symbolic part. How would I know if it’s incorrect or wrong?

As far as I know, religion is man made. And tradition is the result of someone’s or a group’s association with repetitive/recurring events/behaviors (for the lack of a better description). So basically someone had an experience doing xyz and got result zyx, therefore it must be done this way? What if that person didn’t have a particular item at that time, how would he/she know if performing the ritual w/o said item would have lead to a different (if any) result?

Don’t know, maybe I’m running in circles or these are just common “newbie” questions, but I really have a hard time blindly following someone’s interpretation and instruction…

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May ask you why?

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Thank you so much, glad we share the same view. I think we can know when we compare the intention and each element used in the ritual or spell. If the intention is fully represented symbolically, exactly as we want, then the structure of the spell is correct, otherwise it won’t be as effective.

Yes I believe so as well. But the followers of such religions or traditions view things differently. Usually the tradition or religious teaching is given to those followers from people who fully understand how things work… but they use the religious mask to hide occult truths from the masses. “Do as thou told” is much easier than explaining advanced natural laws to people who will not understand it, and if they do… they will probably use it to harm themselves and others. But when I review such traditions I keep both sides of the story behind the ritual in mind because both were used to create it.

For us, because we study the occult… we can replace any element with another that would do the same job or create the same or very similar effect. That may require some testing before the actual ritual is performed.

I can imagine how you feel, same here. It’s not easy to have a critical thinking mind when working magick and spirituality in general. But the reward is greater than anything else. Please keep it that way. It’s really worth it :slight_smile:

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It’s more of a personal opinion, but deification (just for example) is alchemical work to become a god. While intent builds things on a deeper level than just energy, it would take more than just energy and intent. But with that particular example, there are a few important factors, like godforms, higher selves, you, etc.

In my experience it sort of depends. Something like money is less complicated than godhood or something else.


There is this too. Some things require more precise action and the act of ritual helps refine results.


Yes they are needed. I wish it was that simple but it’s not. Unless that being is with you 100% of the time u need a ritual to contact them. Of course there are ways of getting around that but I cannot disclose that. So sorry but yea rituals are needed

Rituals are optional I never had to use a ritual to do what I needed but I did choose to do a ritual once or twice in my life and that was in my beginner days as I got further into it I learned to do without rituals. However, they’re fun to do every now and then.

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Mashanya let me tell you a secret about Goetia evocation. The “formal ritual” with all the conjurations, spiritual tools, incense etc. only need to be done once for a particular spirit. That initial formal ritual is the getting an introduction to that particular entity and more important establishing a relationship i.e. forming an alliance i.e. making a pact with that spiritual entity. Once you have established that connection it’s not necessary to go through all the bells and whistles routine to contact and work with the spirit. That’s when having you own customized conjuration along with much shorter summoning method comes into play.


^^^^Mashanya to add on to my previous comment to show you I’m not just pulling info out my @$$ that same methodology of formal ritual not being necessary each time interacting with the same spirit is expounded upon noted noted English Occultist and Scholar Jake Stratton-Kent:

“In general Verum employs evocation for one main purpose, which is to form a pact with the spirit or spirits concerned, precisely so they will be willing to assist the magician in other types of operation. I say spirits in the plural for a reason. In contrast to the methodology of the Goetia of Solomon as popularly understood, Verum’s process envisages the possibility of summoning more than one spirit at a time for the purpose of forming pacts. While any evocatory process is demanding, in terms of time and effort expended, this multiple evocation process is considerably more economical, and far more productive.”

“Modern understanding envisages the conjuring of a single spirit in order to achieve one specific result, and the spirit concerned may never be met with again. Verum on the other hand envisages calling upon one or more spirits in order to commence a working relationship, so that on future occasions the same spirits may assist the magician repeatedly. In these subsequent relations the full procedure of evocation is rarely necessary; and will usually only be employed to initiate relationships with additional spirits. Such exhausting operations therefore are not the be all and end all of goetic sorcery. The magician and the spirits with whom they are involved will be active in a variety of other procedures. These will involve a range of different skills and activities, alongside a more minimalist conjuration.”

Except from " What Is Goetia?

by Jake Stratton-Kent


Thank you! Yes, it’s really not easy, and sometimes it feels like I’m getting in my own way. But next time, I will try to keep both sides in mind rather than insisting on doing my own thing.

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Hmmm, so you do a ritual every time you want to talk to a spirit? And how would you explain something like talking to an entity you never had any contact with during a simple meditation?

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