Lesson Nine calls for a ritual bath... well I lack the necessary piece of equipment, I do have a shower though so I am inspired to create guidelines for a ritual shower.
Unlike baths, which are generally quite similar in form, showers can be quite different from one another. I myself have what is called a "wet room", the floor and walls are waterproofed so there is no need for a separate shower cubical. There is a curtain that can be pulled around the shower area and a fold down chair, the room originally being designed for someone with limited physical capabilities. I am therefore quite lucky that I am able to sit down and relax under the shower.
As with the classic ritual bath I like to light the room with candles, however I prefer to use an oil burner instead of incense as I find that smoke and steam don't mix well, make sure to light the oil burner well in advance. The choice of oils used will be dictated by the purpose of the ritual. Normally at this point you'd be chucking various lovely things into the bathwater, but I don't have that luxury so I suggest a ritual body scrub instead.
A good handful of sea salt
A few teaspoons of dried herbs
If you have dry skin add a handful of oats
Enough oil to moisten the mix eg almond oil
A few drops of essential oils
The type of herb, oil and essential oil are up to you, make sure to research their properties, both mundane and magical and if in doubt consult a good book or a qualified herbalist. Use your judgement to decided what quantities to use, experimentation is key! If you want to make enough to last for more than one shower store it in an airtight container or kilner type jar. If you don't like the idea of bits all over the shower then tie up a portion in a muslin bag and use it to scrub yourself like that instead.
Where were we? Oh yes, a candlelit room scented with essential oils and a jar of sacred scrub near the shower. I think we need some soothing music, take your pick and remember to be careful with electrical items in the bathroom! Now, Lesson Nine suggests drawing an invoking pentacle of water over the bath, well how about we bless the shower head instead? It's now time to turn the shower on, let it heat up to the desired temperature and while waiting take a few deep cleansing breaths. Just as in the Ritual Bath instructions you are surrounded by the elements; fire from the candles, water from the shower, air by the incense/oil burner/steam and earth by the sacred scrub. Consider this as you step under the shower.
Enjoy the experience of relaxing under warm water then step away from the water (or turn it off if you're in a small cubical) and rub yourself all over with the scrub, if you're using the muslin bag you need not step away. The next part will depend on whether you mind getting your hair wet. If you don't mind then you can give yourself a thorough soaking, letting the water cascade over your head and face. As you do this visualise all negativity being washed away with the remnants of the scrub, I see it as a muddy black/brown being rinsed down the drain. If you don't want to get your hair wet, remove the shower head and hold it to you. As you rid yourself of the negativity see it being replaced by golden light (or any other colour you care to visualise) and continue to do this until you feel ready to leave.
When you are ready turn the shower off. I really like the blessing given in Lesson Nine (taken from the Gardnarian Book of Shadows) and I think now would be a good time to do it. I would change the words slightly though:
“Blessed be my feet, that have brought me in these ways.
Blessed be my knees, that shall kneel at the sacred altar.
Blessed be my womb (seed), without which we would not be
Blessed be my breasts, formed in beauty
Blessed be my lips, that shall utter the Sacred Names.”
Chronicle of Smee