Dedicating, purifying, or making ready tools and implements through extensive and long drawn out rituals is something I find silly. A proper tool will do what my Will directs it to do. This does not mean there should be no purification mind you. My path requires only that a tool to be used in ritual be bathed in the light of the full moon for one night, and the light of the sun for one day. A simple prayer is then said over it. It creates a connection between the Gods, the tool, and me.
I think over time it has gelled in the minds of many magic practitioners that rituals are only going to be successful if the main tools are both varied and prepared in specific ritual manners. That is a bag of rubbish. A spell can be cast with something bought directly from a grocery store and with no preparation if the intent is known, the Will is strong, and the power is directed by the Will to accomplish the intent.
The main tools used for rituals in my Left Hand Path are few, those being the Ritual Knife and the Cup. Sometimes simplicity is best, and I have embraced it in many aspects of my path.
The Ritual Knife, is symbolic of two very different but interwoven things, and therefore represents a duality. Like the phallus it is an object representing fertility. A phallus is driven into a woman spewing seed into her womb, and the womb generates life. In the Sacrament the Ritual Knife is driven into the Cup, a representation of the womb and symbolizes the holy union of a man and woman to procreate. But with birth, comes death. Thus the duality of the Ritual Knife, as it is also a weapon and represents a clear connection between birth and death. The Ritual Knife is used in magic castings to create outcomes directed by the Will. It shapes energy from the womb of the Mother Danu, and it also disapates or ends them.
The Cup is a symbol of the secret power of the Mother Danu to give birth and give shape…and by extension all women. It holds the water of life like the woman’s womb cradles the fetus in life-giving fluids. It is a symbol of creation and transformation, for from it nothing can become something.
Specific spells or rituals can require other tools, components, and implements. Some of these include, but are not limited to, cords, wands, chalk, crayons, paint, containers, censors, incense, candles, plant and animal parts, etc. These I will mention within the directions for various spells or magical workings where they are required. The complexity of preparation for these items can vary from working to working and some can even be unique to a particular purpose. A piece of chalk may be used “as-is” in one working, but can be required to have many other processes worked in another. There is nothing wrong with this. It sets the mood or tone, helps to focus the Will, and atmosphere is an important component as I have mentioned before.