Chaos Magic and Sigils

Chaos magicians have a penchant for using sigils in their rites. Sigils are symbols used to create reality according to the will of the magician. Since symbols have resonated deeply with humanity for thousands of years, this is an especially powerful way to practice magic.

Attributes of Chaos Magic

Chaos Star, Credit Trish Deneen
Unlike what the name implies, chaos magic is hardly chaotic. It can be, but the point is to be freed of cultural programming in order to bring about true change. In this sense, chaos is the cathartic element that pushes the magician past restrictive personal boundaries.

Chaos magicians stay away from a dogmatic approach. Instead, they believe in embracing different belief systems as a means to an end. For instance, for one rite, they may immerse themselves in ceremonial magic techniques and for another may use a more nature-based ritual to achieve success in their work.

A.O. Spare - Pioneer in Chaos Magic

Austin Osman Spare, an early 20th century English artist and occultist, pioneered chaos and sigil magic in what he termed the atavistic resurgence. According to a short biography of Spare by Nevill Drury in Book of Lies: The Disinformation Guide to Magick and the Occult, he used sigils as a way to access the godhead within as a source of genius.

Spare believed that sigils could be used as a symbolic set of instructions to direct the will. He used them in a trance state to connect his subconscious mind with the universal spirit that he called Kia. He would achieve this state by one of several methods including deep meditation and sexual release. He believed the latter especially was a time when a state of momentary absence of thought was achieved and was the best time to be united with Kia.

How to Use Sigils in Practical Magic

While Spare's goal was to contact the higher self and spiritual realms, his techniques have been adapted for practical magic which focuses on immediate material or emotional gain.

Sigils are most effective when created by the magician for personal magic. To construct a sigil using Spare's method, do the following:
Job Sigil, Credit Trish Deneen
  1. Write out the desired magical effect as a sentence such as "I desire a new job."
  2. Cross out all repeating letters.
  3. Make a glyph with the remaining letters so that they appear unrecognizable to their original form.
  4. Build energy around the sigil either through meditation or an ecstatic method such as orgasm or dancing and music.
  5. Once this energy has reached its peak, release it while visualizing the sigil.
  6. Make a record of successes and failures in a magical diary in order to develop the best personal magic practice.
  7. Try to forget about the sigil after this. Otherwise, the energy hasn't truly been let go for the magic to work.
Further source:
  • Hine, Phil. Condensed Chaos: An Introduction to Chaos Magic. New Falcon Publications, 1995.
© Trish Deneen


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