This was a variation on a sigil ritual I performed a few times before, including in the IOT and at the Chaosmagic.com world meeting in Tokyo 2004.
The formula for the rite is quite simple. First, participants blow up balloons upon which they draw sigils. I made these available the night before the ritual to help create party atmosphere in the lodge by having balloons around the place. When we came to perform the rite we gathered all the balloons into the centre of the room where we could walk around them.
We then visualised the balloons as bubbles in a cauldron and chanted a refrain from Macbeth:
Hubble bubble, toil and trouble, fire burn and cauldron bubble.
Actually, the real line from Macbeth says ‘ouble, Double’, not ‘Hubble bubble’. I’m not sure where the latter comes from, possibly Manfred Mann. It seemed most appropriate to use this chant at this meeting especially since we weren’t all that far from where Macbeths castle was supposed to be located.
In any case we chanted this repeatedly whilst walking about the balloons kicking them to simulate the heat of the fire, being careful not to let any escape. As the ritual neared its end we were chanting faster and faster, until eventually we all dived upon the balloons and started popping them with our hands, which by this point was great fun. We all laughed when we realised that we got permanent marker on our hands.
We also made a sound recording of this rite, but for some reason we’re experiencing technical difficulties in getting it to embed in the post, so I thought I’d go ahead and post this anyway. I can always make an update later once we’ve got the sound working…
In the past, such as in Tokyo, I used a bubble sword at the end of the rite to blow huge bubbles, but I decided not to use it on this occasion partly because of the small group and venue and partly because it would mean that I didn’t get to pop as many balloons…