cone of power

Antiquarian Witch

March, 2014

Raising the Cone of Power


One way of casting a spell which is suited to covens of from four to twelve (plus a leader) is to form an image of the magical aim and then cast this into the astral, through the Height, after building up power through the Witch’s Mill and the Witch’s Rune.

While the visible part of the temple is the magic circle within which coveners work, this is conceived as a plane bisecting a sphere.  The highest point on the sphere is called ‘the Height,’ and the lowest point is ‘the Deep’.  The upper half of the sphere can be visualized by all in common, while the lower half is visualized, and felt, by each witch singly, as extending within the mind-body down to the depths of the subconscious mind.  Each witch should practice a descending meditation on a regular basis, so as to become familiar with his or her psychic contents within and down below.

Witches stand within the cast circle near its perimeter, facing inwards towards the center.  They should alternate by sex, with four of them (including the coven leader) standing on the cardinal points, and the rest between these.

After the coven casts the circle and calls quarters after its ways, and having invited in the Lady and Lord in their seasonal forms, the magical aim should be discussed by the coven leader (High Priestess or High Priest), the reason for the spell, the physical location of its impact, the temporal limits of the working, and the spell’s conformity with the Rede.  This last ensures that none is harmed, controlled or manipulated by the spell.  An exception here would be wanions, that is, protective spells cast during the waning of the Moon.  In the case of a protective spell, the object of the working is to restrain the hostile attentions or actions of some person against the coven.  But even in these cases, no one is to be harmed.

Proceeding deosil [1] (clockwise) from the coven leader, each covener speaks briefly, presenting an image or epithet which applies to the magical aim or goal.  Once everyone has had a chance to speak, the images volunteered by the coveners are consolidated, by mutual consent, into a single image or mental form which can be silently envisioned by each covener.  When this has been agreed upon and a sound picked to invoke the image, the coven is ready to begin the Witch’s Mill.



The Witch’s Mill:

The coven leader repeats the following, which is taken from Nigel Jackson’s excellent Call of the Horned Piper:

“On an oak-leaf I stand;

I ride the filly that never was foaled;

And I carry the dead in my hand;

Under the earth I go.” [2]

Everyone then says together the invoking sound.

Now the coven leader repeats the first line of the Witch’s Mill, and each succeeding line is spoken by the other coveners on the quarters.

After the four lines have been spoken, they are repeated by all together, as the witches join hands and slowly begin to process deosil.  This should be timed so that all return to their original stations upon completion of the fourth line.

All then repeat the invoking sound.

The Witch’s Rune:

The coven leader then recites the first part of the Witch’s Rune, which is taken from an old troubadour manuscript of the Middle Ages and is regarded as a genuine witch chant.  No one knows for certain what it means, though there have been educated guesses.  The purpose in this and the later part of the Witch’s Rune is to focus the mind of the coveners away from rational speech to speaking unknown words or sounds which have an effect on their subconscious minds, enabling them to raise their inner power together and, at the last, release it in a great cone or vortex overhead.

The troubadour’s chant goes as follows.

“Bagahi laca bachahé

Lamac cahi achabahé


Lamac lamec Bachalyos

Cabohagi Sabalyos,


Lagozatha cabyolas,

Samahac et famyolas,

Harrahya!” [3]

As this is difficult for some coveners to learn, it is spoken by the coven leader. The circling continues during this, gradually speeding up to a light walk.

The coven leader then switches to another rune, which I will attempt to represent by its sounds, as we do not possess it in manuscript form.  It can be found in Eight Sabbats for Witches, by Janet and Stewart Farrar.

The coven leader chants this second rune first, as the pace of circling is picked up slightly.  Then all repeat the rune together a second and third time, moving quite swiftly on the last go-around (but be careful of the candles!), and increasing the volume of the chant:

“Eko eko Azarak,

Eko eko Zomelak,

Zod ru koz e zod ru koo,

Zod ru goz e gu roo moo,

Eeo eeo hoo hoo hoo !” [4]

Upon shouting the final hoo!, coveners stop suddenly, lift their arms towards the Height, shout the invoking sound, and send their power together into the form of a vortex or Cone of Power.  The idea here is to hurl the thought-form of the magical goal or aim, visualized in thought, through the zenith point of the temple into the surrounding astral world, whence it will rebound on the material plane and bear fruit.

Immediately after releasing the Cone of Power, coveners drop to all fours and ground the power.  They remain  in that position for a few minutes resting, and then, when rested (but not before), crawl back to their original stations, sit and meditate quietly.

It is time for cakes and ale.





FARRAR, Janet and Stewart, Eight Sabbats for Witches, Custer, WA, Phoenix

Publishing House, 1981.

JACKSON, Nigel, Call of the Horned Piper, Berkshire, U.K., Capall Bann Publishing,



[1] Pronounced ‘jesh’l’.

[2] Jackson, Nigel, Call of the Horned Piper, p. 9 et seq., part of an illustration. ‘Under the earth I go’ is a signal to each witch to reach within.

[3] Farrar, Eight Sabbats for Witches, p. 44.

[4] Farrar, Eight Sabbats for Witches, p. 45, fn 14 by Doreen Valiente.