Use Of Alcohol In Ritual

From another thread here, I thought I would create a new topic on this interesting question.

Many societies around the world incorporate a combination of alcohol and psychoactive drugs to aid trance states for deity/spirit communications and/or specific ritual use.

As far as AE goes, there is some evidence (though not concrete and is hotly debated) that some aspect of this was present, certainly in early times. The use and reference to Blue Lotus and it’s properties, as well as a number of other substances referring to opiate use as well as the effects of burning and consuming various food stuffs would no doubt have been recognised by them as being useful.

Indeed, in the Leyden Pap. reference is made to using various ointments for divination purposes, as well as the frequent and very definitely confirmed use of beer and wine in AE which would be very clear as to its effect! The use of it in many festivals can’t go without note.

Any thoughts and experiences you want to share on this?

My own use I don’t mind discussing. Yes the use of alcohol has definitely been used on occasion. In the early days of my youth (wow I sound old), in the '90s I would hit the dance for after a drink or two to ‘loosen up’ and dance for my goddess in trance for hours.

Now, those days a long gone but I still use alcohol as a relaxant in small doses to aid trance and visualisation work. Too much and the effect is damaging, but just about right it does help to remove the stresses of the day and induce a slight inhibition or reduction in risk aversion.

Along with this I will also use Frankincense and Jasmin incense which have many associations for me, as well as Frankincense being a known mild psychoactive.

Going further though, no I’ve never taken any drugs, in fact the smell of weed gives me really bad headaches, and considering I’ve been entering trace state since I was little, I don’t really need a huge help to get there, just a small nudge sometimes. That said, I notice that as I age the effort required to enter trance is increasing, but the methods I currently use are sufficient.

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Thanks for sharing Kev!

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My magical training - based in medieval and later practice - forbade alcohol before ritual or more than a sip during. My later Pagan practice basically divided many rituals into two parts - a swig was OK during the first, and indulgence later was positively recommended. The idea in both cases was that it earthed your higher faculties, so was obstructive in trance or communication work - opposite to that of other traditions. I do little ritual now and have never tested which is more accurate! I have mostly avoided all drugs because of dubious mental health, but when I have used them, I was well away from ritual and never felt that they would aid me in ritual. Like you, my own brain can create similar enough effects, spontaneously or deliberately.

That’s interesting…

I don’t feel drawn to using alcohol during a daily devotion. However, I can see how ‘loosening up’ with a bit of alcohol would perhaps help with truthful communication without as much self judgement/restrictive thinking.

I do like Frankincense and can see myself continuing to use that scent in ritual. I don’t see a mild and natural psychoactive as harmful physically/mentally harmful.

I’d never take drugs because as you say, it would be bad for mental health and physically also.

LOL I do need to point out that I only use such things for special occasions now otherwise I might be in more of a physical wreak than I am :slight_smile:

The biggest effect I get from the Frankincense is not so much any mind bending effects (little that they are), its the scent. Scent for me is a huge trance trigger, that and music.

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