Big Power In A Little Symbol: How To Create Sigils
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Sigils are a wonderfully simple form of magic and also one of my favorites. These little magical symbols are each coded with a unique purpose, allowing them to be incredibly direct and powerful while also being a very fast form of spell work.
There is no single, definitive method for designing a sigil. The method I use is one of the more traditional versions but any method that allows you to condense an intention into a single symbol will work. The important part is that you feel that the symbol has power when you are finished. To this end, the choice of method largely depends on your personal sense of aesthetic and how much effort you need to expend to achieve it.
I first learned sigil crafting from a book called Practical Sigil Magic and it's still my go-to book about sigils! I seriously LOVE this book, it's a wonderfully in depth and easy to understand guide to everything you need to know about sigils. It's also one of the more true-to form guides on sigils that I've found, it draws entirely from the chaos magic roots of this type of magic so you get a really good feel for sigil crafting in its intended form.
FREE BONUS: Get the Creating Sigils Workbook
Creating a Sigil
You Will Need:
- A pencil
Your first step will be to figure out what the intent of your sigil is going to be. This is the most important step, your intent should be well thought out. A half assed intention will lead to a half assed result. You’re going to turn this concept into a sentence, be specific and precise with your wording. You want the sentence to be relatively short and it needs to be phrased in the present tense, phrase it as though you’ve already got what you want.
Ex. “I have self love” instead of “I will love myself”
As I stated, be precise and clear in your meaning. Wording can make all the difference. “I have the job of my dreams” could have significantly different results than “I am a journalist for National Geographic”. Also try to avoid negative words
As an example, I’m going to use the phrase “I am mentally healthy and happy”. This is a sigil that I could use any time I’m struggling with anxiety or depression to help me tip back into a more solid headspace.
Next, write out your sentence (otherwise known as the power words or power phrase). Erase or cross out all of the vowels, after that you’ll remove any repeating letters so that you have only one of each letter present. These letters are the base symbols of your sigil.
So “I am mentally healthy and happy” becomes “M N T L Y H D P”
Now start to fit your base symbols together into a single glyph. At first it’s probably going to look weird and nothing like a symbol of power, just keep messing with it and moving things around. This part takes some time, the key is just to play around with it a lot. The most important thing about how it looks is that you like it. It doesn’t matter if it looks like just a jumble of letters or if none of the symbols even resemble the letters they were originally or if it doesn’t “look like a sigil”. If it looks right to you then it’s right!
After I get all of my base symbols arranged how I want them I like to take some time to stylize it, even out any symmetry and draw a few drafts just to get used to the symbol.
This is the finished first draft of my mental health sigil, I’ll probably do a lot of tweaking before actually putting it on my mirror but you guys get the idea.
Your sigil is ready to use! Slap it on jewelry, walls, yourself, boxes, sticky notes, pie crusts, whatever you want.
Get the free Creating Your Own Sigils Workbook and learn to craft your own awesome sigils!
It’s time to activate your sigil. If you like working in a ritual space set that up for yourself, meditate and center a bit if you like. Activation is actually quite easy, though it may take a bit of practice before you identify what the “activation moment” feels like. Make sure the entire sigil is visible and gaze at it comfortably. Let your eyes become familiar with the symbol and meditate on the sigils power phrase. As your eyes become more comfortable they’ll start to warp the sigil, it’ll look like it’s squiggling a bit. Shortly after this the sigil will fall still again and appear very ordinary and inert, letting you know that it’s charged and activated.
Close down your ritual space and go about your witchy (or otherwise) business.
Sigils are wonderful for all sorts of magic, I’ve used them on the outside of the doors to my house for protection, on my skin for changes in my mental state and on sticky notes scattered about my home and town when I need some quick magic.
If you're looking to go deeper into this fascinating (and super handy!) form of magic, definitely check out Practical Sigil Magic. There are many guides on how to create and use sigils but this is one of the most straightforward and easy to understand books I've found on the subject!