The magical work with symbols can be divided into three categories: meditation, path work and ritual.
In meditation you let the symbol act on you in a deliberately induced deep relaxation.
In this state, the limit to your subconscious becomes lesser, and every deep knowledge can arise from the increased communication of the subconscious with the symbol within you.
Path work is a controlled sequence of universal images that act in the meditative state on your subconscious mind. The sequence vividly illustrates spiritual processes and lets them deeply affect your subconscious mind. Through this, deeper inner processes can be stimulated.
The ritual creates a concrete connection between inner experience and the physical world around you. All actions and objects occurring in the ritual are symbols that form a unity with your inner experience during the ritual. The fact that 'outward' causes inner cognitive processes and that 'inner' and 'outer' interact, promotes the concrete manifestation of your magical work in the world.
Even though these three categories of magical work can be clearly distinguished, they are very often combined in practical work: a meditation can be initiated and also stopped by ritual elements, and most rituals include meditation.
Pathworks can be also combined with meditation and ritual.