A question came up on a previous article I posted asking, “Why do you invoke the gods?”. This is somewhat a double sided question. On one hand, the question is asking what the purpose in invoking the gods and on the other hand, the question is asking why would someone want to invoke the gods.
To answer the first question on why do you invoke the gods in ritual. Simply put, you invoke the gods to gain greater insight and understanding for your practice. By invoking the gods, you are allowing them to be pulled down into your being and have them to speak through you. This is not to be confused with evoking the gods, which is to call upon them and asking for their support and guidance.
The ritual format I described in the previous article about Beginner Rituals, was the order of events and didn’t really give a good description as why the acts are done and how you can do them. The purpose of that article was to get you thinking about ritual structure and ways that you can make up your own. If you are new to pagan ritual practice, I do not recommend that you invoke the gods to start with, instead, I recommend that evoke them. This will bring their attention to you without having them come down into you. The longer your practice with your chosen gods, the better your relationship will be with them. Once you feel ready to invoke your gods, then ask them for their permission.
I have updated my previous article in order to give a better idea on how to go about these two different styles of ritual. For further reference on invoking, I recommend that you check out the Drawing Down the Moon ritual.
For the second question as to why you would choose to invoke a god into you, that would actually be up to you to decide. I highly recommend that you have a purpose for it. If you are in a coven, you may have one or two members of the coven invoke gods to ask them questions, seek direct guidance, learn new stories, or spells to proceed with. I sometimes invoke my matron Goddesses or patron Gods to just sit with them within me and ask them if there is any work they would have me do and allow them to work within me until their task is completed.
I will say that it has taken me almost twenty years of practice to gain this much understanding with them. I don’t tend to invoke beings that I have not worked with, I find their energy is hard to understand and they cannot stay within me long. In which case, I will choose to evoke them instead. In which case, I call upon their guidance to help me move my own energy into the ritual.
Building a relationship with a deity or spiritual being is time consuming and requires dedication. I have spent the recent full moon cycle working with my matron goddesses in order to build a stronger relationship with them. I hope to upload a version of this practice that you can purchase to use in your own practice. Keep an eye out for a post about this soon!