According to the ancient teachings, creation was founded on five forces, or elements, that were joined together by the sixth aspect of spirit. These elements are Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Chaos.
The element of earth represents form and stability. The element of air represents intellect, objectivity, thought, and adaptability. The element of fire provides force and generates activity. The element of water lends change and mutability. The element of chaos brings about rapid change, removing of obstacles or unwanted situation, and to get things moving when static.
Earth, Air, Fire, and Water elements within magical symbolism are the basic components of all that exists. They are at the same time visible and invisible, as well as physical and spiritual. From these four elements all things have been created according to magical belief.
Chaos comes in where the beginning of Creation started. Its elemental energy was used to remove everything in the Universe to make way for the other four elements to begin forming everything we know today. We will discuss the uses and abilities of this element further down the page as it isn't a common element used in modern paganism.
It is unwise to view the four elements in purely physical terms. When we speak of the elements, we do not mean literally the forms that we are used to referring to them. For example, Water can mean anything in liquid form or Air can mean any gaseous substance. These names can be used to represent the unformed, non-material substance of the element.
The elements are even considered in the psychological divisions of basic human personality. Everyone is linked to a combination of elemental forces at the time of their birth and usually one element predominates. For example, those who are influenced by Water seem to be ruled by their emotions while Air people are more detached, intellectual, logical, or abstract. Earth people are usually practical and materialistic while Fire people are the most quickly bored if their interest isn’t fed.
The elements are found in the very heart of the Craft, whether approached from a magical or devotional direction. Because this is the magic of nature, using natural powers, tools, and symbols, it is important to understand the attributes of the elements. An understanding of the elements will aid your magical work greatly.
Earth doesn’t necessarily represent the physical Earth, but that part of it which is stable, solid, and dependable. It is the foundation of the elements, the base. It is the domain of abundance, prosperity, and wealth. In magical workings, Earth “rules” all spells and rituals involving business, money, employment, and prosperity in all its forms, stability, fertility, and more.
Earth is a feminine element. It is nurturing, moist, fruitful, which are the qualities that make it feminine. These attributes are the reasons that many civilizations envision the Earth as a great Mother Goddess, the all-fertile Creatress of nature.
Earth rules the Northern point of the compass, because that is the place of greatest darkness and of winter. Its color is the green of the fields and plants. It governs stone, image, and tree magic.
Air is the element of intellect, the realm of thought, which is the first step toward creation. It is the clear, uncluttered, pure visualization, which is a powerful tool for change. It is also movement, the force that sends the visualization out toward manifestation. It rules spells and rituals involving travel, instruction, freedom, obtaining knowledge, discovering lost items, uncovering lies, and more. It can also be used to develop the psychic faculties.
Air is a masculine element, being dry, expansive, and active. It is the element that excels in places of learning, and which is at work while we imagine, think, and consider.
Air rules the East because this is the direction of the greatest light, and the light of wisdom and consciousness. Its color is yellow; the yellow of the Sun and of the sky at dawn and its season is spring. Air governs the magic of the four winds, most divinations, concentration, and visualization.
Fire is the element of change, will, and passion. It is most primal and for this reason is much used in magic. It is the realm of sexuality and passion. It is not only the “sacred fire” of sex, but also the spark of divinity, which shines within us and in all living things. It is one of the most physical and spiritual of the elements.
Fire rituals usually involve energy, authority, sex, healing, destruction (of negative habits or disease), purification, evolution, and more. Its magic is quite often practiced near the hearth, or beside fires lit in wilderness clearings, or beside the flame of a single candle.
Fire is masculine. It rules the South, the place of greatest heat, the color red, and the season of summer. All candle magic comes under Fire’s powers.
Water is the element of purification, the subconscious mind, love, and the emotions. It is the element of absorption and germination. The subconscious is symbolized by this element because it is rolling, always moving, like the sea which rests neither night nor day.
Water magic involves pleasure, friendship, marriage, fertility, happiness, healing, sleep dreaming, psychic acts, purification, and more. A ritual of Water usually ends with an object being tossed or placed in or on a body of water.
Water is a feminine element, and its color is the blue of deep, deep water. It rules the West and autumn months of the year, when rain showers wash the Earth. The magic of Water is full of mirrors, the sea, fog, and rain.
In Dragon magick, chaos is seen as an element, a force that we can tap into to help propel and form our magick. Chaos is the divine spark that lies within each of us, it lets us know that chaos is found within and without and it helps to put us in touch with the first Deity. It is how dragon magicians tap into the primordial energy that existed before the Goddess was formed; it is sometimes called the first magic. There is the common misconception that because we use chaos that our magic is confused and disordered. This isn't so, our magic still has structure it just tends to react and manifest in unusual ways.
Chaos, in and of itself, isn't a system or philosophy. It is a bridge between our world and dragons; we tap into their energy when we choose to work with chaos. We already know that we shape our magic out of the traditional four elements, bind our magic together with spirit, then in dragon magic we transmit it through chaos. By invoking dragons into our rites we are consciously drawing on the element of chaos. Chaos is the basis for our magic with dragons, it is how they can add their energy to our works and chaos is seen as the primal creative force.
What confuses many is that chaos doesn't come with a set of rules or ethics and because of it some have deemed it the "left hand path", equating it with evil. There are no set spells for chaos, it works with the spells of any tradition or those that the practitioner writes. Chaos' ability to blend itself with any method, any belief system makes it fairly unique and often a mystery. It is not evil, just as magic is not inherently evil, but it can be shaped to suit any need. Just like electricity, chaos is neither good nor bad; it is how we choose to apply it that gives it a positive or negative attitude.
But what is chaos? It is defined as "the irregular, unpredictable behavior of deterministic, non-linear dynamic systems". What this means is that we cannot always guess how chaos will manifest or what its outcome might be. Just because spell A completed in manner B that doesn't mean it will happen that way every time. Spell A might turn into C or D, or it might do some thing completely unexpected and give us 3. Chaos challenges us to consider alternative avenues of thought, to abandon logic as our only way of proving an experience. For most magicians this is the largest stepping stone, it is often hard to not try to find a logical manner to explain away what we are doing.
Because chaos is non-linear, it is not bound by the constraints of time. Applying this to spell work means that we can affect events already past or those that haven't happened yet. One thing to remember is that no-one knows exactly how magic works. For example - weather magic, performing a rain spell. Does the magick work in the present time to affect current weather patterns to bring rain? Or does it work retroactively, moving backward in time to set up the weather that we need to bring the storm that we desire? Chaos magic tells us that it can do either one of those, or it can do both, or neither.
Working with chaos means that we are tapping into a powerful and strong energy that at its core is primal. It can overwhelm some and many find that they feel like the energy could physically knock them over. Its unadulterated power makes it appear dangerous and threatening but with time and practice you can get used to the rush of energy, but even then it will still retain its 'punch' so that we don't forget what we are dealing with. Chaos is akin to the spirit of dragons and we must learn to work with chaos, to "think outside the box", and through the key of belief to tame the elemental force of it. We cannot dominate chaos, just as we can't dominate dragons, nor can we hope to over power it but we can work with it and have it work our will. To try to harness it in a war of domination will only frustrate ourselves and warp our magic.
These great dragons are ruled by the Sairys (pronounced Sair-iss), their elemental color is pure yellow, and where they inhabit is often warm and moist. Air dragons often have a very peaceful nature and they like to share what they know, in fact they feel that all knowledge is worth having. As their name suggests, they control the winds and can manipulate air with amazing dexterity. They can even remove all air from an area creating a vacuum that is next to impossible to fill. These dragons are often long and slender, some have gauzy wings and their scales often have a feather-like quality and may have actual feathers around their heads, necks, and paws. They govern the Eastern quarter of the Circle and you can apply Eastern associations to these dragons.
Positive associations of these dragons are new beginnings, the Spring, breath, optimism, joy, intelligence, mental quickness and renewal.
Negative associations of air dragons are frivolity, gossip, fickleness, inattention, stagnation, bragging, and forgetfulness.
The magick that these dragons control is often used to control weather, as one would expect. They are also useful in spells that blow away the old and are excellent in protection rituals as well as magick that works for mental flexibility and openness to new ideas. Teachers and students both will find a wealth of information with these dragons as they can teach us how to better impart our wisdom as well as sharpening our minds so that we can learn better.
Other forms of dragons that fall under this category are lightening dragons, storm dragons, wind dragons, and weather dragons.
The Ruler of these dragons is Fafnir (pronounced faf-near), their elemental color is pure red, and they tend to live in warm and dry areas. These dragons have a fiery disposition but can be very gentle and understanding, it is also true that they can be unpredictable and difficult to work with until they get to know you. Once you gain a fire dragon's loyalty they are unwavering and powerful friends. Their bodies are often thick and heavy with a long snake-like necks and tails. They often have wicked looking horns on their head and their mere presence can make a room warmer. Fire dragons are fierce protectors and are often heralded by their loud roar. They govern the Southern Quarter of the circle and Southern correspondences can be applied to fire dragons.
Positive association for fire dragons are summer, the sun, blood, any kind of helpful fire, enthusiasm, activity, change, passion, courage, daring, will power, and leadership.
Negative associations for these dragons are hate, jealousy, fear, anger, war, ego, conflicts, and irritability.
The magick of fire dragons is often used for personal purification on any level, for energy or courage, and for the stamina needed to pursue your dreams and finish important projects. You can also use their potent magick to help remove barriers, but once they are set on a course they are very difficult to halt and will go through or over anything or anyone to achieve their goal. If you don't have a good working relationship with these dragons and you employ them they can turn your spell into something destructive that will 'burn' through all obstacles and leave ruin in their place.
Other forms of fire dragons are steam dragons, heat dragons, lava dragons, and desert dragons.
Water dragons are ruled by Naelyon (pronounced nail-yawn), their elemental color is pure blue and they live in cold and moist areas. Water dragons have a very soothing influence and are drawn by strong emotions but will not contact anyone who lets their emotions constantly run away with them. A room may feel a few degrees cooler when water dragons visit or you may notice an increase in the humidity. These dragons are long and serpentine and rarely have legs or wings. Their scales will have a silvery or shimmery hue to them and they tend to have a feathery fringe around their mouths. Many times they appear looking like Oriental dragons and their eyes may have a glowing quality to them. Water dragons govern the Western quarter of the Circle and Western associations may be applied to these dragons.
Positive water dragon associations are calm water, compassion, peacefulness, forgiveness, love, intuition, calmness, peace of mind, and fluidity.
Negative associations for these dragons are floods, storms, laziness, indifference, instability, lack of emotional control, insecurity, and overwhelming grief.
The magic of these dragons is generally used for dealing with emotions, either calming them or stirring them up. You can also use their energy to help with movement or to help keep things fluid and open. You can call on these great dragons to help open up your psychic centers and lend their aid to your divination skills. Water dragons are also useful for calmness in all situations and on all levels, when you have to deal with anything that will tax your emotions you should ask water dragons to lend their aid.
Other types of water dragons are ice dragons, mist dragons, and rain dragons.
These dragons are ruled by Grael (pronounced grail), their elemental color is pure green, and their homes are in cold and dry places. Earth dragons are very quiet beings, they will observe from a distance until they are ready to approach you. Once you have befriended an earth dragon they are very straight forward and will be blunt and honest with you but are very loving and nurturing. They tend to have a ridge of sharp scales down their necks and back, their body scales are often very reminiscent of armor. Of all the dragons, these are the ones that like treasure and in order to build a strong relationship you should keep a jar or dish full of coins. The earth dragon’s bodies tend to be very heavy and most of them have four legs, when they have wings their wingspan is enormous. Earth dragons govern the Northern Quarter of the Circle and Northern associations may be applied to them.
Positive associations for earth dragons are respect, endurance, strength, responsibility, stability, prosperity, thoroughness, and having a purpose in life.
Negative earth dragon associations are rigidity, unwillingness to change, stubbornness, and lack of consciousness, vacillation, and weakness.
Earth dragon magick is good form building long lasting foundations, for helping to complete long-range goals, and for invoking stability into your life. You can also call on them for physical and mental endurance as well as the strength to accept responsibility. If you are planning to do a spell for enduring prosperity and success, earth dragons are excellent for this but they expect you to work towards your goals and not demand that they deliver it to you.
Other kinds of earth dragons are stone dragons, nature dragons, mountain dragons, and forest dragons.
These dragons don't have a ruler, their color is pure black, and their homes are in elemental chaos. These dragons are always dark colors that blend into blackness, often it will look like they have stars caught in their scales. Their bodies are heavy and huge; in fact they tend to be the largest of all dragons. They have wide, wedge-shaped heads and their long tails often are barbed or spiked. Chaos dragons have huge wings that often blend into the night sky and may be hard to make out; they are masters of camouflage in spite of their large bulk and are rarely seen if they don't wish it. These dragons are not evil or malicious, they work with us and their magick is often incomprehensible to us and they go beyond our limited view of happenings. Because of this their acts may seem cruel, but they are working for our greater good. These dragons are pure representations of chaos and we are to call on them when we realize that not every problem or situation can be resolved with order and reasoning. When working with these dragons they will go straight to the source of your problem or question and force you to confront it. This can be rather uncomfortable for us as we will need to deal with hidden aspects of ourselves that we may not be ready to face, so be sure that you are prepared to accept the consequences of invoking a chaos dragon.
Chaos dragon magic is mainly concerned with the re-creation of lives, relationships, and careers. You can employ them to help break through barriers, with changing luck, and in bringing about vast changes. You can work with them to explore past lives and their magick is particularly powerful aids in divination. Their magick is also used to confine anything that will hinder you in forward growth and movement, if you invoke this aspect of them be prepared to have everything that is holding you back leave you life whether you want it gone or not. This is the type of dragon that we work with when we talk about 'riding the dragon’; eventually during this ritual we will have to confront our worst enemy - ourselves. Chaos dragons can also be heralds warning of catastrophe, to ignore what they have to say may bring about destruction in our lives.