To abjure, which literally means "to swear away from."
Generally, to abjure is to repudiate or renounce, as in an oath.
In magic and witchcraft, abjurations were the traditional operations and rituals of magical banishing and exorcising, which involved to banish or "to swear away from" a person, location or an area surrounding a magician of spirits, entities, intelligences, influences, and demons.
An ancient German abjuration formula which renounces the three foremost German deities with all their hosts consists of questions and answers, which read as follows (translation from the original German manuscript):
"Question: Forsakest thou the Devil?
Answer: I forsake the Devil!
Question: And all Devil guilds?
Answer: And I forsake all Devils guilds.
Question: And all Devil works?
Answer: And I forsaken all Devil works, and words, Thonar (Thor) and Wodan (Odin) and Saxnot (Fro) and all the evil ones that are his companions." †
In those long gone days Christianity itself was regarded as a kind of magic which in distinction to the black magic or necromancy would have to be categorized together with white magic. The sacraments were believed to be miraculous methods of performing supernatural feats quite similar to exorcisms, and the Church itself was, in the minds of the uninformed people, an institution of sacred sorcery.
In contemporary magick, usually spirits and other influences are abjured with the LBRP (Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram) and/or by the casting of a protective magic circle that surrounds the magician.
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Sources: (1) Dictionary of the Occult, Caxton Publishing; (2) The Encyclopaedia Britannica Eleventh Edition Handy Volume Edition, Oxford University Press; (3) Carus, Paul, The History of the Devil and the Idea of Evil: From the Earliest Times to the Present Day, Nabu Press.
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