Nightly Ritual of Reflection
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I have designed this ritual as one means for devotees of Apollon to assess their behavior and responses to that which they may not understand or appreciate throughout the course of a day. If you would like to alter some of your ingrained responses, this ritual may be able to help.
Firstly, you will conduct the ritual as more of a conversation with Apollon. Yes, there will be the usual propitiation and other traditional elements, but there will be a lot of just talking to Him about your day, as well.
To begin, set up the area in which you will speak with Apollon. This could be your shrine or altar to Him, or this could be the coffee table in front of your couch. Just make certain that the surface area is clean and dust-free.
Place an image of Apollon of your choosing upon this surface area, along with an appropriate incense holder, keeping in consideration the type and volume of incense to be burned, the accouterments for making khernips, and some blank paper with a pen. Have also an open bottle of wine and at least one glass– two if you’re planning on having any.
It is not necessary to bathe before this ritual, though you certainly may, but a simple washing of the face and hands will suffice.
As is typical, we will begin with a procession. Approach the designated ritual area solemnly. Sit before the image of Apollon (it is important that you make yourself comfortable) as you prepare the khernips. Proceed to purify yourself and the space.
Next, you will propitiate Him through whichever epithets of His that are personally relevant to you, while you light and offer incense. I like to use a bundle of stick incense– one stick for each epithet called.
Pour Him a glass of wine for listening, about half way in the glass. Pour yourself one, too, if you want.
Now is the time for you to greet Apollon, to let Him know the purpose of His visit, to obtain His cooperation through your preferred divination method, and finally, to go over the details of your day with Him. Be honest. Mention each time you had a hypercritical thought about someone or their choices, or any other negative/unnecessarily cruel (on your end) interactions with other people or beings. This is a confession, not to absolve you of past wrongdoing, but for you to acknowledge what was done, said or thought, in order to clear the path for change.
At this time, you will ask Apollon for purification, through the release of your anger, resentment, jealousy, desire to control, etc. To symbolize this purification, you will hand write one letter of apology to each individual wronged that day. Take this seriously, and remember that Apollon is watching and listening. This is your physical act of contrition, and you may or may not choose to actually deliver the letters. The important part for now is just to acknowledge that there are things about past interactions that you would like to change.
Next, you will set an affirmation– something attainable, such as “mindfulness toward compassion”, or “an open exploration of empathy”, etc. This will be your guidepost for interactions throughout the subsequent day.
Now, you will praise Apollon, truly and sincerely, in your own way, in your own words. During this praise, you will pour a libation to Him, of wine, finally filling His glass.
In closing, you will express gratitude to Apollon, for His presence and purification, and for His willingness to assist in your transformation.
The ritual is meant to be performed every day for a set amount (your choice) of days, preferably at the same time each day, for best results.