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A PLEA FOR INITIATION STANDARDS I'm full of radical ideas. I think the terms "Priest, Priestess, High Priest and High Priestess" are more than titles. I think being a member of the Priesthood means more than status. I think a coven is more than a study group, or a social gathering. I think being a Witch is more than a protest against the patriarchy. I think receiving a First Degree should mean you have worked and studied and grown and dedicated yourself to your path and your Gods. I think an initiation should mean something. I know of a young man who received a third degree after having proved he could lead a ritual. That's all he had to do, lead a ritual. I know of a woman who claims third degrees in both the English and American traditions of a well-known tradition. She shows absolutely none of the qualities by which one usually recognizes a High Priest or High Priestess. I know of a woman who refused to accept the standards set by her High Priestess, who threw a fit when she didn't get her First on demand. She went to another teacher, secretly received her First, and a year later, her Second. Considering her attitude toward her first teacher, I have absolutely no faith that she did any work to earn her second. Yet she calls herself a High Priestess. When two members of Sothistar received their first degrees last year, they had: studied and worked with the five magical elements, worked at developing personal relationships with the Gods, studied astrology, symbology, qabala, Tarot (both as a divinational and meditational tool), several forms of divination, writing rituals, leading rituals, drawing down the Moon, basic spell-casting and various methods,ethics, the Egyptian deities and mythology, ritual etiquette, the laws of the coven, the use of stones and crystals, meditation, conducting rituals, the meaning and duties of the priesthood, and the use of chants and songs. Both had chosen (or been chosen by) deities to whom they wished to make a special dedication. Both had proven their loyalty to the coven and the Craft. Both had served as vessels for both the God and the Goddess, and both had led rituals. After all of this, they received First Degree. Am I saying that mine is the only way--that if your coven does not study these subjects your initiations aren't valid? Certainly not! I am saying that our tradition has standards for initiation. Many other covens have standards--some more stringent and some less demanding than mine. What I am saying is that I wish everyone had standards. Why? Because when you have standards, the initiations you give mean something. 908 When we took the two mentioned above around to the four quarters and pronounced them Priest/ess, they could not have been prouder of their achievement. Nor could we. We had no doubt they could serve as competent dedicated Priest and Priestess in a ritual. In the time since, they've proved it over and over. When they make Second Degree, and Third, and eventually have a coven of their own, they'll continue to make us proud. When they represent the coven other places, they do so in a manner that reflects well on the coven. I've met many First Degrees of other covens who did not reflect well on their teachers. (I've also met many who have.) You ask again, Why? I'll give you a personal reason--because it irritates the hell out of me that the people mentioned at the beginning of this article can put their noses in the air and claim a higher status in the Craft than my two dedicated, hard-working, sincere students. Once upon a time, a high school diploma meant something. You couldn't get a decent job without one. These days, it means nothing. These days, a Bachelor's Degree doesn't mean much. I don't want that to happen to initiations! Perhaps I should discuss what I think initiation is. A true initiation is not a ritual, it is not entrance into a club, it is not just a dedication. An initiation is a spiritual step to a higher stage in spiritual growth. There are many such steps. Such "initiations" are not given by High Priest/esses. They are given by the Gods. An initiation ritual is an acknowledgment by a coven leader that the Initiate has, in that leader's opinion, reached a certain stage in spiritual growth. Coven leaders are not omniscient. Although I'm sure such leaders strive to serve as worth representatives of the God and Goddess, they (the coven leaders) are not the God and Goddess. All of them must find their own ways of determining whether their students have achieved this growth. They must also give what guidance they can to those attempting to achieve it. Our study program includes many things not mentioned above, exercises and spiritual work that, we hope will help our students reach that goal. If our students apply themselves to all they are given to do, it is possible for them to reach that stage. When we give a first degree initiation, we are saying that the Initiate is *already* a Priest/ess of the Goddess. I do not ask that all covens adopt our particular standards. I do plead with you to *have* standards beyond simple attendance at ritual for a year and a day. Insist that they work hard, that they learn and grow, that they struggle, that they strive, that they become, in your opinion, worthy servants of the Gods. Some months ago, I mentioned this to two leaders of a newly-formed group north of here. Their eyes lit up and they said "You can help us. We were just talking about setting standards!" No true standards had been set for their initiations, and they felt the lack. Oh, they had third degrees from their teacher, but they wanted more meaning for those they gave than was given to their own. Bravo! There's hope for the Craft yet! Ellen Cannon Reed AN OPEN LETTER TO A WITCH 909 I do not know what Tradition you follow. That does not matter. Indeed, for all I know, you may not follow any of the traditions. You may be one of those many lonely ones who, for whatever reason, must worship by 'feel' rather than through any formal coven training or participation. But whoever you are, and however you worship, all that matters to me is that you hold true to the God and the Goddess. My purpose in writing this letter is to enjoin your aid in destroying that which cripples our Craft. Dissension is the disease. It is not a cancer, for it can be cured; and, as with most herbal cures, the best treatment is that administered internally. Friend,help spread theBrotherhood andSisterhood ofthe Craft. do not seek to establish a scale of Wicca purism, (for no two Witches will ever agree on the relative positions on the scale of even their own tradition.) There is no one religion for all people, and THERE IS NO ONE TRADITION FOR ALL WITCHES! Let this be understood, and accepted. Choose your own path and leave your neighbor to choose his. Remember the primary tenet: "AN IT HARM NONE, DO WHAT THOU WILT." Yetnever forget:"An it harmnone..." If your pathleads to sex rites, to homosexuality, to not pt it foreward as "THE WICCAN WAY". It is only A Wiccan way, one of MANY. And by the same token, if a path so presented is not your way, do not decry it simply because it is not your way. Who are you to say another is wrong, so long as it harms none. Strive for honesty, friend. Do not make false Craft claims, whether of position, heredity, lineage, or whatever. If you have a quarrel with someone, seek out the one you disagree with, rather than utilize perhaps unreliable intermediaries. do not spread unfound rumors and question those who do so. News of battle makes more exciting reading than news of peace. Why, then, provide battle news for publication when the serenity of the Craft is what we should be showing? We have come along way, myfriend, in a fewshort years. Let us move on along our chosen paths till we emerge - as we will - accepted and respected by ALL as a religion in our own right. Help usbring anend to washingour dirty linenin public. There will always be disagreements, there will always be those who cannot tolerate others, but they are in the minority and so they should remain, if you wish. But do not deny them their right to those differences. Friend, weare Children ofthe Universe, andChildren ofthe God and the Goddess. Let us try to remember that, and live in Peace. Blessed Be, and Merry Part! 910 MAY DAY CHANT ONE Here we come apiping, In Springtime and in May; Green fruit aripening, And Winter fled away. The Queen she sits upon the strand, Fair as lily, white as wand; Seven billows on the sea, Horses riding fast and free, And bells beyond the sand. Valiente, Doreen; "Witchcraft for Tomorrow"; Phoenix Publishing 1985 MAY DAY CHANT Two The High Priestess and High Priest lead a ring dance around the bonfire. Start out with "A Tree Song" from Rudyard Kipling's "Weland's Sword" story in "Puck of Pook's Hill". "Oh, do not tell the Priest of our Art, Or he would call it sin; But we shall be out in the woods all night, A conjuring summer in! And we bring you news by word of mouth For women, cattle and corn Now is the dun come up from the South With Oak, and Ash and Thorn!" Farrar, Janet and Stewart; "Eight Sabbats For Witches"; Robert Hale 1983 STAG CALL also MAYCHANT THREE The men gather around the fire, next to their partners, and they say in unison: "I am the stag of seven tines; I am a wide flood on the plain; I am a wind on the deep waters; I am a shining tear of the sun; I am a hawk on a cliff; I am fair among flowers; I am a god who sets the head afire with smoke." Graves, Robert; "The White Goddess"; Farrar 1970 Transcribed to computer files by Seastrider 911 CRYSTALS & STONES Gemstoneshave beenusedforcenturiesas meditationalaidsand magical magical foci. Each individual type of stone has different properties. Here are some healing and spiritual properties from a list I have. These descriptions are based on ancient legend and lore: AGATE: Moss Agates considered to be most powerful. Aid in restoration of energy, used in healing, and believed to bring wearer happiness, wealth, health, and long life. Increases ability to ward off self-induced anger and inner bitterness. Carnelian-gives protection and energy. Moss green-balances emotional energy. Moss red-balances physical energy. Blue lace-gives tranquility. Amber: Powerful healing stone with large amount of organic energy. In ancient times, ground to a powder and mixed with honey or oil of roses for various physical problems. Filters germs and infections and has the power to disinfect. Worn around the neck to help fight infection and respiratory diseases. Lifts the spirits. Apatite: Promotes communication and mental clarity. Amethyst: Increases spiritual awareness, has a calming and soothing influence, has the ability to transmute negative into positive, and is very effective as a healing stone. Warmed and placed on the forehead and temples, it is good for headaches. Has the ability to draw through it forces directed towards the body and repels vibrations which the body doesn't need, thus releasing only the energy patterns beneficial to the body. Best worn in healing near the heart center. Opens up spiritual and psychic centers. Helps prevent drunkeness. Aquamarine: Calms nervous tension. Calming effects of the sea. Used to help banish fears and phobias. Means seawater. Soothing and cleansing. Adventurine: Increases perception and creative insight. Stimulates opportunity and motivation. Azurite: Powerful healing stone, invokes spiritual guidance, opens psychic eye. Good for dreams and improving psychic ability. Bloodstone: Stimulates flow of energy for healing blood circulation, stops hemorrhaging. Removes emotional blockages. Citrine: Stimulates openness and accelerates the awakening of the mind. An aid to the digestive system. Helps eliminate toxins. Encourages tremendous healing on the emotional and mental levels, helps unblock subconscious fears, and serves as a natural relaxant. Coral: Balances physical energy and relaxes tensions. Carries the creative vibrations of the sea. 912 Emerald: Promotes creativity, stimulates perception and insight, and strengthen memory. Beneficial effect on the eyes. Garnet:Balances hormones, goodfor mentaldepression, enhances self-esteem, alleviates bad dreams, and encourages success in business. Thought to assist in seeing into past incarnations. Hematite: Calmingto the emotions. Worn as an amuletto confer strength and procur favorable legal judgements. In Egypt, used to reduce inflammation and treat hysteria. Considered to be a grounding stone. Helps maintain balance between body, mind, and spirit. Ivory: Spiritual protection. Jade:Stimulates practicality,wisdom,and universalattunement. Thought to provide a link between the spiritual and the mundane. Most revered by the Chinese. Jasper: For energy balancing of emotions and stress. Flourite: Opens andsoftens the wayfor the useof otherstones. Excellent used in aquariums-provides needed minerals. Lapis Lazuli: Stimulates wisdom, truthfulness, & psychic experiences, healing and strengthening when worn next to the skin. Strengthens mind and body to spiritual awareness. Malachite: often used asa child's talisman to sleepsoundly & protect from bad dreams. Stimulates clear vision and insight, represents hope and inner peace, believed to protect from danger. Increases abundance in all areas of life. Moonstone: Bringsgood fortune. Reflects the wearersbeing and feelings. Promotes unselfishness. Opens the heart to humanitarian love and hope. Good for protection while travelling on water. Gives clarity to spiritual understanding. Good for pre-menstrual symptoms and balancing to the reproductive system. Used to ease childbirth. Pearl:Stimulates feminine qualities,used to focus attention, helps pull together mental and spiritual forces, peace of mind. Represents purity, modesty, & gentleness. Peridot: Dispels fears, guilt, and depression. Used to counteract negative emotions and healing of the spirit. Affects top three chakras. Once worn as a means of gaining foresight and divine inspiration. QUARTZ: Amplifiesthe healing energyof the one usingit. Used to help draw out pain. Able to tap into the energies of the universe. A good stone for meditating on. Works primarily with the Third Eye center, also relates well with the heart center. To be able to tune into the quartz promotes clarity while concentrating on it. Also affects the crown chakra. Very potent and often worn to protect from negative vibrations. Cleanse regularly. Rudilated-rutile needles help focus attention. Smoky-good for calming the mind. Rose-vibrations of universal love & inner serenity. Ruby: Increases vigor, renews vitality and cleanses the blood. The stone of courage. 913 Topaz: Calms emotions, protects against external stresors. To restore physical energy & quiet emotional nature. Tiger Eye: Very powerful protection, clarity of thought. Tourmaline: Causes the wearer to be more flexible, more understanding and more objective in purpose and reason. Calming. Each person has a different response to this stone. Causes a reaction in the intestinal tract. Black and Crystal-removes negativity and cleanses. Some say it should not be worn as jewelry. Electric and magnetic properties. Turquoise: Vibratescalmingradiations, protective,andrestores healthy mental attitude. Stone of friendsship. Balancing and healing. Great strength and vitality. Takes on characteristics of the wearer. 914 CRYSTALS & STONES NAME COLOR CHAKRA USES AMETHYST Violet Crown Calming,grounding, a cleanser and spiritual stimulator, yin/yang balance, strengthens heart, cleanses liver of toxins, excellent for lung problems. ADVENTURINE Green Heart Soothes emotions, used for the heart and heartache, for acceptance o f self and others, for inner peace. AGATE Varied Solar- Compelstruth, promotes Plexus, good manners, happiness, intelligence, prosperity. Heart longevity, fertility, and good health, affects stomach, throat, heart. AZURITE- Blue-green Heart, Allpurpose healing stone, affects MALACHITE Crown ethericbody,parathyroid glands, nerve, spleen, pancreas, used to release repressed emotions and f o r physical detoxing. BLOODSTONE Green-red Root Offers courage, endurance, harmony, used t o stop bleeding, helps i n making decisions, used f o r iron deficiency, in t h e blood, for moving kundalini energy, and to invoke peace in all who are drawn to it. CITRINE Golden Solar- Generates radiant, happy Plexus vibrations, helps thoughts to be clear and emotions controlled, raises thinking to intuitive levels, on a physical level it can be used to help eliminate toxins from the colon, gall bladder and kidneys a n d entire eliminative system. 915 CHRYSOPRASE Green Solar- Has a quality of compassion and a Plexus, capacity for fine attunement works Heart on the solar plexus and heart areas to sooth emotions, will help tranquilize many forms of a n d neurosis, also used t o absorb or deflect unwanted energies. FLOURITE Clear, Crown, Multi-dimensional stone, balances Blue, 3rd Eyeandintegrateslower (human) self Purple withhigher(spiritual) self, good for meditation over 3rd eye chakra, works well with virulent diseases. GARNET Red Root Stimulates happiness, peace, balance, patience, inspiration, persistence, good for rebirthing, menstruation and life passages, disorders, fertility, eases arthritis pain. HEMATITE Grey-black Root A verygrounding stone, very cooling to the physical body, use for fevers, alleviates worry a n d anxiety as it allows f o r mental clarity, often known as the "worry stone". HERKIMER Clear Crown Very balancing special variety of quartz crystal "DIAMOND" works with yin/yang energies, often known as the "Dream Crystal", aids in bringing teachings of the dream state into conscious awareness, very highly attuned spiritually. KYANITE Blue, Crown, Aligns all chakras, if so directed Black 3rdEye can openchakras(energy centers in the body), dispells frustration and anger, excellent attunement stone, good for meditating, aids in p a s t l i f e regression. LAPIS Blue Throat, Used over 3rdeye 916 (brow) chakra, LAZULI 3rd Eye assists in opening and clarifying (Brow) inner vision, provides strength, vitality and self-assurance, used for disorders of the throat, heart,spleen, blood, skin a n d to counter effects of stroke and epilepsy, also good for dream work. LITHIUM Lavender Crown, Helps to reduce stress and ease depression, with Pink Solar- relates to cycles of Tourmaline Plexus birth and deathand eases transition, good preparatory stone inner spiritual work, on physical helps with digestion. MOONSTONE White Crown Has avery calming effect on the emotions, Pastel stimulatesthe pineal gland, assists in stimulating the feeling (intuitive) nature, eases menstrual pain, alleviates many degenerative conditions in the skin, hair, eyes, and body fluids (tears, digestive juices). OBSIDIAN Black- Used tosharpen both the internal and external Snowflakevision,oneofthemost important "teachers" of the New Age stones, teaches one the truth of oneself in relation to ones ego, depicts the contrasts of life-day and night, darkness and light, truth and error. PERIDOT Green Heart, Promotes digestion, eases ailments Yellow/ Brow inthedigestive system, used for Green forprotection, prosperity, emotional calming, purifies, balances. PHANTOM Clear All Very powerful tool for the New Age, Redor used togroundand center while 917 Yellow attuning to higher spiritual energies, in healing work used to disperse congested energies. PYRITE Gold Solar- Hasa very protecting, shielding aspect which Plexus works on the physical, mental, emotional levels. Shields from many forms o f negative energy, strengths circulatory system, clears oxygen in the blood. QUARTZ Clear Trans- All-purpose, all healing, amplifies personal thought-forms, transmutes energy point and forms protective shield around auric field, excellent for meditation stone, color work, aura work, very energizing. IRRADIATED Very Absorbs all formsof negative QUARTZ Black energy,placed on or near electrical equipment (T.V., microwave, computer) to absorb harmful energies. ROSE QUARTZ Pink Heart Comfortsheart from all wounds, helps heal emotional pain, enhances l o v e , self-love, positive outlook, joy and oneness, helpful for heart, throat, ears, nose, hypertension. 918 SMOKEY Black Root, Eases depression, fear and panic, QUARTZ Grey Solar- clears aura, very grounding, Plexus enhances positive attitudes, tranquilizes, works well with root chakra to release negative blocks emotional and physical, used for menstrual cramps,intestines, stomach and digestion. TOPAZ Yellow Solar- Draws negativity from chakras, Plexus protects against insomnia and depression, mood elevator, revitalizes, very stimulating to the creative thinking processes, eases death. TOURMALINE Varied Root, Works as a protective shield, consumes negative energy without releasing i t into the atmosphere, h a s to do with visions a n d "seeing" with compassion, good for the eyes, teaches to expand l i m i t e d concepts of thinking, relates to aspirations for higher love, very complete stone. TURQUOISE Aqua Heart, Known as"The Sky Stone", is Throat excellent for both Spiritual attunement and healing of the energy centers and the physical body, valuable for grounding as well as for vision quests and astral t r a v e l , purifies all levels of being and is capable of handling strong negativity, also used for wounds and for damage to bones. 919 920 M O D E R N P A G A N I S M : QUESTIONS & ANSWERS To promote community harmony and freedom of religious practice. Distributed by : The Committee for Religious Freedom, Salt Lake City, Utah. Thanks to LesleyPhillips andLinda Pinti ofThe Covenantof Unitarian Universalist Pagans for original material. Contemporarysociety isexperiencingaresurgence ofinterest in earth- and nature-centered spirituality. Modern Paganism is a rich and diverse religious movement drawing the attention of the media, law-makers, and spiritual seekers. This pamphlet attempts to answer some of the questions frequently asked about modern Pagan beliefs and practices. What is Paganism? Theterm"Pagan" comesfrom aLatinword for"country dweller" first used in early Christian times to refer to those not yet converted to Christianity. "Pagan" was an epithet that cast aspersions on those not seen as "true believers." Today, it refers more general to the faith of those whose spiritual center is drawn to native and natural religions, usually pantheistic or polytheistic, and almost always earth-centered. What then is "Modern Paganism"? ModernPaganism,orNeo-Paganism, isamodern, Earth-centered religious perspective which borrows and adapts from pre-Christian paganism as well as from contemporary religious thought. While reconnecting with ancient wisdom, it speaks eloquently to the needs and concerns of the present. What is meant by "The Old Religion"? The term describes the pre-Christian religion of much of western and northern Europe, which was based on the agricultural cycles and other natural rhythms of the Earth. It coexisted with Christianity for centuries, from the so-called "Dark Ages" up until the Inquisition and the "Burning Times" (witch hunts) of the late Middle Ages. It also can refer more generally to other native and tribal religions of the world. What is the difference between Paganism and Witchcraft? SomecontemporaryPagans callthemselvesWitches.The termhas many meanings, some carrying rather heavy negative baggage. "Witchcraft" or "The Craft" is most properly applied to three broad categories: Descendants of the European witches of the Middle Ages, practitioners of the "reconstructed" Witchcraft of the 20th century, and "feminist Witches" whose religion and politics center in the contemporary womens' spirituality movement. It can generally be said that all modern Witches are Pagans, but not all modern Pagans are Witches. At least one writer, Aidan Kelly, has begun to use the term "Neo-Pagan Witchcraft" to describe the largest portion of the contemporary Pagan community. 921 What is meant by the term "Wicca"? Oftenused asa synonymfor Witchcraft,"Wicca" isthought to derive from an Anglo-Saxon root meaning to bend or to turn. It is more properly applied only to those Witchcraft traditions which originated in or derive from practices in the British Isles. What about Shamanism? Shamanismisnot areligion, butaset ofspiritual techniques used for healing and the acquisition of knowledge through forays into non-ordinary states of consciousness. Now gaining increasing attention in the counseling profession, this journeying is usually aided by sonic driving (such as repetitive drumming or chanting) and often involves interactions with totemic and archetypal figures. These techniques are used in virtually every tribal society and are widely used by contemporary Pagans. What do modern Pagans believe? The centralbeliefs ofmodern Pagansdiffer in specificsyet share many fundamentals. Deity is seen as immanent rather than transcendent. Experience is preferred over doctrine. It is believed that there are and should be multiple paths to the Divine. There is no prescribed creed, but there are a number of beliefs shared by most contemporary Pagans, summarized at the end of this pamphlet. Isn't this just Humanism by another name? Noand Yes.Likereligious Humanists,modernPagans havealove and reverence for this world and the physical plane generally. The rational is seen as important. Great emphasis is also placed on the intuitive, however, and the belief that the physical and non-physical worlds are equally real, and are interconnected, interpenetrating manifestations of nature. This means that spiritual work, whether called meditation, prayer, or magic, and whether done as ritual, worship, or celebration, is efficacious and can result in changes in the physical world. The majority of Pagans also believe in the survival of the consciousness or soul after physical death. How do modern Pagans worship? Some groups have formalworship services or similar group meetings. Others conduct rituals that have varying degrees of set forms. Some Pagans worship by themselves without formal ritual. Most contemporary Pagans hold rituals corresponding to the turning of the seasons and the phases of the moon. Rituals are often performed in a sacred space defined by the demarcation of a circle, within which the celebration and worship take place. Celebrations include eight major seasonal holidays, sometimes collectively referred to as "Sabbats". These Sabbats, as most frequently observed by North American and European Pagans, follow the agricultural cycles of the northern temperate zone, and include the solstices and equinoxes as well as four intermediate festivals which fall in between, sometimes called "cross-quarters," on or near the first days of February, May, August, and November. Regular public Sabbat rituals, reflecting a variety of contemporary Pagan styles, are held in many communities. Rituals may include meditation, chanting, drumming, myth- and story-telling, ritual drama, dance, and so on. Deeper ritual work is most often practiced at private gatherings, which for many traditions coincide with the phases of the moon. The work may include more intense raising of energy, healing work, and personal spiritual development. 922 What about Satanism? Contrary to the claims of ill-informed Christian fundamentalists, the practices of modern Pagans are in no way related to Satanism. Most Pagans do not even believe Satan exists. As a profanation of Christian symbolism, Satan worship is a Christian heresy, not a Pagan religion. Do Pagans proselytize? No,Pagansdo notproselytize.Most modernPagantraditions do welcome newcomers. Most modern Pagans also do not discourage other Pagans from integrating other religious and spiritual practices and beliefs into their practice. WHAT CONTEMPORARY PAGANS BELIEVE while there is no set of beliefs shared by all Pagans, most would agree that similarities far outweigh differences. There are a number of beliefs held by the vast majority of modern Pagans. Some of these are: 1. Divinity is seen as immanent. 2. Divinity is as likely to manifest itself in female as male form, the God or the Goddess, in the interconnectedness of all life. 3. Multiple paths to the divine exist, as symbolized by many goddesses and gods. These are often seen as archetypes or gateways to the unconscious. 4. We respect and love Mother Earth as a living being, Gaia, of which we are a part. 5. The physical world, as an emanation of the divine, is good and to be enjoyed by all living beings in love and harmony. 6. Ethics and morality are based on avoidance of harm to other beings, including Earth as a whole, which mandates environmental activism as a spiritual responsibility. 7. Human interdependence implies the need for community cooperation. 8. The solar and lunar cycles and the cycles of our lives are celebrated. This leads to the maintenance and revival of old customs and the creation of new ones. 9. A strong commitment to personal and planetary growth, evolution, and balance are vital. 10. One's lifestyle must be consistent with one's beliefs. The personal is political. 11. A minimum of dogma and a maximum of individual responsibility in all things are goals to strive for. Thus a healthy skepticism is to be fostered, and ideas are not to be accepted without personal investigation of their validity. 12. Messiahs and gurus are to be avoided. The mediation of another being is unnecessary for an individual to commune with Deity. Power-from-within is preferred to power-over. 13. All beings are personal emanations of the Divine. Thou art Goddess, thou art God. 923 A Booklist of Pagan/Magickal Titles I. Tarot: A. The Tarot - Paul Foster Case (f) B. The Qabalistic Tarot - Robert Wang (a,f) C. The Book of Tokens - Paul Case (f) D. TheBook ofThoth - Crowley(a,f) II. The Qabalah: A. The Mystical Qabalah - Dion Fortune (f) B. The Kabbalah Unveiled - MacGregor Mathers (f) C. The Sepher Yetzirah - W. Wynn Westcott (f) D.APracticalGuideto QabalisticSymbolism-GarethKnight (a,f) E. The Ladder of Lights - William Grey (f?) III. Magick in general: A. The Tree of Life - Israel Regardie (a,f) B. Magick in Theory and Practice - Aleister Crowley (a,f,b) C.TheGolden Dawn;TheComplete Golden DawnSystem of Magic- Israel Regardie (c) D. Magick without Tears - Crowley (c) IV. Meditation A. The Training of the Mind - Alan Bennett (a) B. Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism - Chogyam Trungpa(d) C. Book 4 - Crowley (a) D. The Experience of Insight - Goldstein (d) V. Crowley A. The Holy Books of Thelema (a) B. The Vision and the Voice (a) C. The Eye in the Triangle - Israel Regardie (c) D. The Equinox, esp The Temple of Solomon the King (a) E. The Book of Lies (a) VI. Paganism, historical A. The Golden Bough - Frazer B. The Mystery Religions - S. Angus (b) C. Oriental Religions in Roman Paganism - F. Cumont (b) D. The God of the Witches - Margaret Murray E. The Golden Ass - Apuleius, transl. Robert Graves VII. Paganism, modern A. Drawing Down the Moon - Margot Adler B. The Meaning of Witchcraft - Gerald Gardner (g) VIII. Eastern Mysticism A. Tibetan Yoga and Secret Doctrines - Evans-Wentz B. Shakti and Shakta - Arthur Avalon (a) C. The Serpent Power - Arthur Avalon (a) D. The Tibetan Book of the Dead - Evans-Wentz IX. Egyptian religion (all b) A. The Gods of the Egyptians - E.A. Budge B. The Egyptian Book of the Dead - Budge C. Egyptian Magic - Budge D. The Leyden Papyrus - Budge 924 X. Miscellaneous A. The Chaldean Oracles - Westcott (f,e) B. The Life of Apollonius of Tyana - Philostratus C. Prometheus Rising - Robert Anton Wilson (c) D. Cosmic Trigger - Robert Anton Wilson (c) Sources (a) Samuel Weiser, Inc Box 612 York Beach, Maine 03910 -EXCELLENT source for books of all sorts, all high quality. Especially good source for books by Crowley & on ceremonial magick. Highly recommended. (b) Dover Publications 31 East 2nd St. Mineola, NY 11501 -reprints manyold books,most notably Budge'sclassic egyptian series (c) Falcon Press 3660 N. 3rd St Phoenix, AZ 85012 -small press specializing in Crowley, Israel Regardie,& the Golden Dawn. Also carries Robert Anton Wilson's latest works, such as PROMETHEUS RISING, THE NEW INQUISITION, and the reprinted classic COSMIC TRIGGER. (d) Shambalah Publications 314 Dartmouth St. Boston, MA 02116 -mainly Eastern religion & Buddhist, but also some western magick, and recently lots of high-quality New Age works. Recently reprinted the classic series HERMETICA by Sir Walter Scott. (e) Heptangle Books Box 283 Berkeley Heights, NJ 07922 -small specialty printing house issuing one volume per year, beautifully typeset. Issued the classic ENOCHIAN INVOKATION by Geoffrey James, which was still in print in April. (f) The Best of Cards Catalog Division of US Games Systems 38 East 32nd St NY, NY 10016 -sells every Tarot pack in existence, & also has a surprisingly extensive booklist of occult books. Good source for Eliphas Levi & tarot material & carries many of the books issued by the above publisher. Catalog is $2. Delivery is the fastest I've ever seen. 925 (g) Magickal Childe 35 West 19th St. NY,NY 10011 -excellent listing; carries Gardner's books & assorted paraphanalia such as Abramelin oil. Carries many more books than listed in their catalog; reportedly if you call them they can get ANY occult book, if it's available anywhere. No, I don't have their phone #. (h) Llewellyn Publications P.O. Box 64383-873 St. Paul, MN 55164-0383 -not so good a source these days,but carries reprints of many of Israel Regardie's classics. Their catalog resembles the National Enquirer; caveat emptor. Interesting to read for entertainment purposes, occasionally one will find a good book there. (i) Circle P.O. Box 219 Mt. Horeb, WI 53572 -apagan organizationpublishinga newsletter& sellssome books, most notably Circle Guide to Pagan & Wiccan Resources, for contacts. (j) Dharma Publishing 2425 Hillside Ave Berkeley CA 94704 -sellsbooks onBuddhism, posters of Tibetan Thanka paintings; much more hardcore Buddhist than Shambalah. These opinions are my own, & where I recall purchasingthese books in the past. They may no longer be available. 926 TALESPINNER'S NEOPAGAN READING LIST by J. Brad ("Talespinner") Hicks THE BEST FIVE: (Read these five first,they are by themselves thebest possible introduction to Neopagan Witchcraft and practical magic that I've found anywhere.) Starhawk, _The_Spiral_Dance_. (San Francisco: Harper & Rowe, 1979). Paperback, $10.95 This isthe essential firstbook fora newwitch, Neopaganor otherwise. In fact, many new covens have been formed with no other sources than this book. Starhawk details the myths, legends, and magic of the Craft in a beautifully elegant, easy-to-read way. Often found in bookstores on the "Women's Studies" shelf, Starhawk's vision of the Craft emphasizes the Goddess as the source of inspiration, with secondary emphasis on the Horned God. Perhaps a bit too Feminist, but still the best introduction yet. Margot Adler, _Drawing_Down_the_Moon_. (Boston: Beacon Press, 1979). Paperback, $9.50 Althoughit isnow 7yearsout-of-date, thisis stillthe best history of the modern, Neopagan Craft that has been published yet. Includes many valuable interviews with some of the people who gave shape to the Craft as we know it. While the book does include some instruction in magic, its primary thrust is philosophy and history. Keep an eye out--there's an updated second edition due out some time in late 1986. Marion Weinstein, _Positive_Magic_. (Surrey, B.C.: Phoenix Publishing, revised 1981). Paperback, $8.95 I see-saw betweenthis book andthe next onefor 3rd and4th place. Both are good, detailed texts on magic and spell-casting. At the moment, I recommend _Positive Magic_ first for the following reasons: 1) it is more practical, teaching actual techniques before tackling theoretical justifications, and 2) the language is a bit easier to follow for non-scientists. The topics covered include the karmic effects of magic, astrology, divination with tarot cards and the I'Ching, and general spell-casting. Its strongest point is the section on tarot, which is the best I've seen yet. Its weakest point (in my opinion) is that it under-emphasizes poetry and ritual. P.E.I. Bonewits, _Real_Magic_. (Berkeley: Creative Arts Publishing, revised 1979). Paperback, $8.95 Thisis theother"best" bookon magic. Itcovers amuch wider variety of topics, including ritual, psychic self-defense, and many other psychic phenomena. Isaac's approach is scientific and rational, not "religious," and his language is often more that of a scholar than a witch, but this is nevertheless an essential book for any student of magic. WARNING: Make sure that you get the second edition (1979) or later, as the 1971 edition includes much material that is misleading, extraneous, and sometimes just plain false--the 1979 edition was heavily edited. 927 Scott Cunningham, _Earth_Power_. (St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1983). Paperback, $6.95 Agood, reliablevolumeof spellsandcharms, compiledfromthe Family Traditions and other witchcraft sources. The magic in this book consists entirely of what scholars call "Low Magic"--the magic of village herballists, midwives, and healers--and as such, it is very practical, simple, and unpretentious. Missing is much of the ceremony of Neopagan Witchcraft; in its place, a huge vocabulary of magic that can be used easily and quickly, regardless of where you are and what you have for tools. THE BEST OF THE REST: (Onceyou have a good background, from the previous five books, you will find the following all make good reference books, worth having on your shelf.) Stewart Farrar, _What_Witches_Do_. (Custer, WA: Phoenix Publishing, revised 1983). Paperback, $8.95 Thisbook isso goodthat it ALMOSTmade itinto thetop five, displacing _Earth Magic_. When its first edition came out in 1971, it was the only book on modern Witchcraft that was written for outsiders. It is surprisingly well-written, and very thorough. Its only serious problem is that it is very specifically Alexandrian Witchcraft (named after Alex Sanders, its first High Priest), and some of it doesn't generalize well. Nevertheless, it has the best-written chapter on initiation, among other things, that I've seen yet. Herman Slater (ed.), _A_Book_of_Pagan_Rituals_. (York Beach, ME: Samuel Weiser, 1978). Paperback, $8.95 This is thecomplete Bookof Shadows ofa Neopagantradition called The Pagan Way. It includes complete, very well-written rituals for all eight of the High Holidays (both solo and group ritual), plus a mixed bag of rituals for healing, trance work, and so forth. Requires some basic knowledge of the Craft and its symbolism, so its not for beginners, but it is definitely useful to any worthwhile fully-initiated witch. Ellen Cannon Reed, _The_Witches'_Qabala_. (St. Paul: Llewellyn Publications, 1985). Paperback, $7.95 So far, only Book 1, "The Goddess and the Tree" has been published, but it's already the best book on the Qabala that I've een yet, and the only one I would recommend to a new Neopagan Witch. The Qabala and its commentary to date contain a lot of sexist material, reflecting their Judeao-Christian origins. Ellen Reed strips all of that away, but in a way that is truer to the Qabala's origins and meaning than was the offensive material. Where she changes the traditional attributions, she documents it, and includes the traditional ones as well. This book is almost a "must-read." 928 Jack Schwarz, _Voluntary_Controls_. (New York: E.P. Dutton, 1978). Paperback, $7.95 Jack Schwarzis NOTa witch,but don't letthat stopyou from profiting from the single clearest, most practical book on kundalini- style meditation that has been published in the West. If you are having trouble meditating, or wish to do serious trance work, turn to this book first. Camden Benares, _ZEN_Without_Zen_Masters_. (Phoenix: Falcon Press, 1977). Paperback, $6.95 Outof printfor almost 7years, Iam VERYhappy to beable to recommend it again. This book is, among other things, proof that there is more to the Discordian branch of Neopaganism than just practical jokes. It is also the best practical book on Zen for the western world that I have seen yet. All of the best zen koans, including these, are also humorous (and therefore memorable). The book also includes MANY valuable exercises. As Robert Anton Wilson (see below) says in the Commentary at the beginning, "If you don't laugh at all, you've missed the point. If you only laugh, you've missed your chance for Illumination." Robert Anton Wilson, _Cosmic_Trigger:_The_Final_Secret_of_the_Illuminati_. (New York: Pocket Books, 1977). Paperback, $3.95 Inthisautobiographical work,Wilson detailshis initiation into and experience with almost every form of shamanic magick that is still practiced today, and draws some very surprising conclusions. Strongest point: this is a fantastic synthesis of magick, psychology, and physics. Weakest point: its central theme--that all of the great mystical societies and movements in history have been in contact with aliens from Sirius--is not taken seriously by Wilson (no matter how serious he seems in this book), and should not be taken seriously by the reader. 929 W I T C H C R A F T the Magic of Ancient Celtic Beliefs in a Contemporary Society =================================== The purpose of this listingis to helpthe novice sortout the reliable from the sensational in the wealth of material that is now available on Witchcraft. I have left out old historical treatises (records of the Inquisition and such) which are of little value to the modern student, and have concentrated instead on contemporary sources. This also yeilds a much more objective perspective. - Michael Nichols THE TEXTS: 'Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America Today' - 2nd ed. - by Margot Adler. Beacon Press trade paperback. You may have already heard Margot's voice, as shewas once hostess of National Public Radio's news program, 'All Things Considered'. This book is the end result of five years of research and interviews. (The 2nd edition is an update published eight years after the original.) This landmark study focuses on the rise of the Neo-Pagan movement (which includes Witchcraft, of course) especially as it relates to the values and beliefs of the counterculture of the mid-60's, hippies, flower children, et. al. It is the single most comprehensive study of modern American Witchcraft in existence. 'What Witches Do: The ModernCoven Revealed' - 2nd ed. - by Stewart Farrar. Phoenix trade paperback. If Adler's book gives a comprehensive overview of modern American Witchcraft, Farrar's is a complimentary look at traditional British Witchcraft. Concentrating on the Alexandrian tradition (which is only marginally different from Gardnerian, easily the largest Craft tradition extant), Farrar lays stress on the actual working of Covens and the integration of novice Witches into them. Also included is much of the Gardnerian (via Alexandrian) Book of Shadows. So there is plenty here for someone who wants to begin practice. 'The Spiral Dance: A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Great Goddess' by Starhawk (pseud. for Miriam Simos). Harper & Row trade paperback. This book shifts back to America again, this time with a slight emphasis on feminist Witchcraft, arguably the fastest growing branch of the Craft. Starhawk is herself High Priestess of two California Covens and her book is insightful, genuine, and beautifully poetic. This overview also contains specific instructions for Circles, chants, spells, invocations, creating rituals and, in short, everything you need to get started. And it is a delight to read. 930 'Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft' by Raymond Buckland. Llewellyn trade paperback. British-born Ray Buckland can, with some validity, be considered Gerald Gardner's American successor. Not only did he introduce Gardnerian Witchcraft to the United States, but he also founded his own tradition of the Craft, called Seax (Saxon) Wicca, which has grown to worldwide practice. His early books, like 'Witchcraft from the Inside', did much to dispel negative stereotypes of Wicca in the 60's. And 'The Tree: Complete Book of Saxon Witchcraft' remains one of the best published Books of Shadows to date. The present volume has a practical orientation, with chapters set up as 'lessons', covering every imaginable aspect of modern Wicca. The book is Traditionalist in approach, making a nice counterpoint to works by Adler and Starhawk. OTHER SOURCES: 'A Witches' Bible, Compleat' by Janet & Stewart Farrar. Magickal Childe trade paperback tandum edition of 'Eight Sabbats for Witches' and 'The Witches' Way', respectively, also called 'A Witches' Bible, Vol 1 & 2'. The first book is an examination of thefestival Holidays of the Old Religion - the Solstices and Equinoxes and the cross-quarter days - together with the rich folk customs associated with them. The second book contains the long-awaited remainder of the previously unpublished portions of the Gardnerian Book of Shadows. In both of these books, the Farrars had the invaluable help of Doreen Valiente, who actually wrote parts of the Gardnerian liturgy. The three Farrar books taken together form the most complete system of Witchcraft currently available. Their more recent book 'The Witches' Goddess' focuses on the feminine archetype, and contains a gazetteer of Goddesses that is mind-boggling in its thoroughness. 'Dreaming the Dark: Magic, Sex, & Politics' and 'Truth or Dare: Encounters with Power, Authority, and Mystery' both by Starhawk. Beacon Press trade paperback and Harper & Row hardback, respectively. If we have gained new religious insights from Pagan and feminist philosophy, how are we to incorporate those insights into our daily lives? Starhawk, the author of one of our principal texts, pulls together a wide range of materials to answer this question in two books as beautifully poetic as her first. Some of these things have waited a long time to be said - and they couldn't have been said better! 'The White Goddess' by Robert Graves. Farrar, Straus, & Giroux trade paperback. A rather weighty and yet poetic book, tracing the female deity of Witchcraft - Goddess of Birth, Love, and Death; of the New, Full, and Old Moon, worshipped under countless titles. Fascinating for the advanced student. Know your Celtic mythology (particularly Welsh) before you start, though! (If you need a quick intro to this book, check out the feature in the Reviews SIG.) 931 'Witchcraft Today' and 'The Meaning of Witchcraft' byGerald B. Gardner. Magickal Childe trade paperbacks. GeraldGardner hasthe distinction ofbeing thefirst practicing Witch to write a book about Witchcraft. He was initiated into one of the surviving traditional British Covens, and onto the tattered remnants of magic and ritual inherited from them, he grafted elements of ceremonial magic. The synthesis that emerged came to be called 'Gardnerian' Witchcraft, and it became the major cause of the Witchcraft revival of the twentieth century. Because Gardner was the first to deal with this material in written form, it sometimes seems very disorganized, but its historical importance is immense 'An ABC of Witchcraft', 'Natural Magick', and 'Witchcraft for Tomorrow' all by Doreen Valiente. Phoenix trade paperbacks. British Witch Doreen Valiente isperhaps best known for her work with Gerald Gardner in creating the Gardnerian canon of liturgy. However, in her own books, she really shines as an amateur folklorist, managing to convey a sense of Witchcraft as a folk religion, tied very much to the locality, the land, and the oldest strains of folk wisdom and nature. Her sense of history and tradition is rich and deep, and she often presents fascinating historical tidbits about the Craft. From no other author can one gain such a rich sense of heritage. 'A History of Witchcraft: Sorcerers, Heretics, & Pagans' by Jeffrey B. Russell. Thames and Hudson trade paperback. This bookrepresents theapproach of agifted Cornellhistorian. Although Russell doesn't always adequately cover modern sources, he has become famous for his ability to integrate a sensible approach to the evidence of medieval Witchcraft with an acceptance of modern Neo-Pagan Witchcraft. 'Magical Rites from the Crystal Well' by Ed Fitch. Llewellyn trade paperback. A book ofrites, simple celebrations of land and water, wind and fire. Rites of passage, seasonal celebrations, magical workings, healings, and many more. Ed Fitch (one of the founders of Pagan Way) is truly in his element here. And it is one of the most beautiful books on the Craft ever published. The art work alone is worth the price of the book! 'A Book of Pagan Rituals' by Herman Slater. Weiser trade paperback. Originally published in two volumes as the 'Pagan Way Rituals', this extremely beautiful book is just what it says it is: a book of rituals. Not authentic Wiccan rituals, but very nearly so, these rituals are often used by Covens in the training of neophytes. Like a good Catholic missal, the words are printed in 'sense lines' using BOLD PRINT (easier to read by candlelight). Anyone who is at least part animist or nature-lover is going to cherish this beautiful book. 'Celtic Heritage' by Alwyn and Brinley Rees. Thames and Hudson trade paperback. A good deal ofmodern Witchcraftcan be tracedto ancientCeltic sources. This book, based in comparative religion, mythology, and anthropology, gives one a clear picture of the Celtic world-view. Drawn mainly from Ireland and Wales, the study focuses on the interplay of Light and Darkness, Day and Night, Summer and Winter, and all the seasonal myths and rituals that make up the great Celtic yearly cycle. 932 OTHER USEFUL BOOKS: 'The Politics of Women's Spirituality: Essays on the Rise of Spiritualist Power Within the Feminist Movement' by Charlene Spretnak. Doubleday trade paperback. Ahuge (and, oneis tempted tosay, thedefinitive) anthology of feminist and Pagan theology. Many familiar authors here: Starhawk, Weinstein, Daly, et. al. Subjects range from Amazons to the ethics of magic. A real bargain! 'Sex in History' by Reay Tannahill. Stein & Day trade paperback. It has oftenbeen said that Witchcraft grew outof an earlier 'fertility religion' and, although 'fertility' is probably the wrong word here, it is undeniable that the history of Witichcraft is irrevocably bound up with the history of sexuality. Like Tantrists and many others in the East, Witches tend to view sex as sacramental. Since this is quite contrary to the prevailing attitudes of our own culture, it may be helpful to understand how our culture acquired such negative ideas about sex in the first place. Ms. Tannahill's unique landmark study will not only answer this question but also indicate the many options other cultures throughout history have chosen. 'When God Was A Woman' by Merlin Stone. Harcourt, Brace, & Jovanovich trade paperback. At the foundations of the religion of Witchcraft is the religion of the Goddess. Ms. Stone's book is an archeological tour-de-force of that religion, which is found at the beginnings of virtually every known culture (yes, even the Judeo-Christian culture). In this book, one learns about the worship of Astarte, Isis, Ishtar, and many others. Also recommended is her 'Ancient Mirrors of Womanhood'. Both are splendid books! 'A Different Heaven and Earth' by Sheila D. Collins. Judson Press trade paperback. Byone ofthe leading feministtheologians of ourday, this book asks what are the psychological and social implications of worshipping a male deity exclusively, while ignoring the feminine principle in religion. This is one of the most influencial books I've read in the last ten years. It changed my way of thinking (for the better) and I dare say it will change yours. 'The Way of Wyrd' by Brian Bates. Harper & Row hardback. What Carlos Castaneda didfor Native American tradition, this author does for ancient Pagan Anglo-Saxon tradition. Subtitled 'The Book of a Sorcerer's Apprentice' and based on authentic manuscripts found in the British Museum, it is the chronicle of a young Christian monk sent into the wilds beyond Mercia in 674 to record the heresies (beliefs) of the Pagans. He is lucky to have as his guide the Anglo-Saxon shaman Wulf. Throughout this documentary novel, the Christian and Pagan beliefs are juxtaposed for abetter understanding of both. Not since 'The Mists of Avalon' has a book accomplished this task so neatly. 933 'Positive Magic' - revised edition - by Marion Weinstein. Phoenix Publications trade paperback. Although a book about how to use magic to changeyour life could be extremely tedious, this one is far from it. While it is true that Marion uses a simple and direct style of writing, it is used on such difficult and subtle questions as the ethics of magic. She draws upon her own experiences to create a book that is truely positive. If I had to recommend one book on magic, this would be it! 'Earth Power' by Scott Cunningham. Llewellyn trade paperback. Scott is arguablythe strongest of the young writers in the immensely popular 'Llewellyn's Practical Magick Series'. This is, in fact, a book of spells. Practical, down-to-earth, useful, everyday, garden-variety spells. It is the only such book in this bibliography. Although I do not recommend a 'cookbook' approach to magic, this book will be extremely helpful when used as a guide for creating your own spells. Also, Scott concentrates on 'natural' or 'folk' magic, as opposed to 'ritual' or 'ceremonial' magic. This is the type of magic (involving Sun, Moon, stars, trees, rocks, springs, etc.) that is the natural heritage of Witchcraft. An excellent starting-place for the novice spell-wright. His many other books, especially 'The Magical Household', are all highly recommended. 'The Medium, the Mystic, and the Physicist' and 'Alternate Realities' by Lawrence LeShan. Ballantine paperbacks. Dr. LeShandoes not deal with magic orWitchcraft per se, but what he has to say about the nature of the cosmos is magical indeed. He is an experimental psychologist, an Esalen veteran, director of ESP research, psychic healing, and other projects. His is a synthesis of philosophy, parapsychology, and Einsteinian physics. His other books, especially 'How To Meditate' (Bantam paperback), are also of great value. 'Seth Speaks' and 'The Seth Material' by Jane Roberts. Bantam paperbacks. Yet another startlingly clear (albeit less scientific) look at metaphysics. This is probably the cream of the crop of all modern mediumistic data: Seth is the communicant, and the late Jane Roberts is the medium. The other 'Seth' books are also of value. 'Psychic Exploration: A Challenge for Science' by Edgar Mitchell, edited by John White. Putnam trade paperback. This anthology serves as an excellent introduction to the scientific field of parapsychology. Each chapter is an extensive review article on laboratory work carried out in one particular sub-genre of the field: telepathy, clairvoyance, precognition, psychokinesis, OOBE's, apparitions & hauntings, etc. These excellent articles will bring you up-to-date on virtually everything that is currently known about the topic in question. Other chapters deal with the history of the discipline, social & psychological implications, military applications, etc. This book could open the mind of the severest skeptic. But at the same time, it could serve as a necessary check on those too-credulous souls who have a tendency to 'believe everything'. 934 BOOKS ON RELATED SUBJECTS: ASTROLOGY: For the absolute beginner, 'Chart Your Own Horoscope' by Ursula Lewis. Pinnacle paperback. The find-at-a-glance tables and charts are worth their weight in gold. For the more advanced students, Michael Meyer's 'A Handbook for the Humanistic Astrologer' is highly recommended for its 'humanistic' (a la Dane Rudyar) approach. If you want to really learn to do astrology, try 'The Only Way To Learn Astrology, Vol I-IV' by March & McEvers. Books by Linda Goodman, Grant Lewi, Ronald Davison, and Liz Greene are also recommended. TAROT: 'Secrets of the Tarot' by Barbara Walker is the best of the newest books on Tarot. You may know Barbara as the author of the amazing 'Woman's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets'. Bill Butler's 'Dictionary of the Tarot' is a wonderful reference book which encompasses works by such authors as Case, Crowley, Douglas, Gray, Huson, Kaplan, Mathers, Papus, Waite, et. al. ESP: Any and all books by J. B. and Louisa Rhine, Gertrude Schmeidler, Thelma Moss, Charles Tart, D. Scott Rogo, J. G. Pratt, Raynor Johnson and Lawrence LeShan would be highly recommended. PALMISTRY: 'The Palmistry Workbook' by N. Altman is clearly the leader here. The book actually has hand-prints, not just line drawings! GHOSTS: Firstly, I'd recommend 'An Experience of Phantoms' and 'The Poltergeist Experience' both by D. Scott Rogo (Penguin paperbacks), who is a kind of historian of psychical research. Also, 'The Poltergeist' by William Roll, director of the Psychical Research Foundation, and this country's leading authority on ghosts. And most importantly, 'Conjuring Up Phillip' by Iris M. Owen, the account of a group of Canadian researchers who 'created' a ghost! This last title is now out of print, but if you can find one in a used book store, it's well worth it. SURVIVAL: 'At the Hour of Death' by Karlis Osis is exceptional. Books by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross are adequate, but not as good. And, if you can find it, the out-of-print 'Life Is Forever' by Susy Smith is perhaps the best introduction. OUT-OF-THE-BODY EXPERIENCES: 'Journeys Out of the Body' and 'Far Journeys' both by Robert A. Monroe. The narative of a much-researched psychic, he only one of its kind. Also, 'Astral Projection' by Oliver Fox, and any early works by Sylvan Muldoon and Hereward Carrington, if you can find them. MEDIUMSHIP: Firstly, the 'Seth' books by Jane Roberts, listed above. Any and all books by Eileen Garrett. Plus, 'Here, Mr. Splitfoot' by Robert Sommerlot, 'Singer in the Shadows' by Irving Litvag, and 'She Spoke to the Dead' by Susy Smith. CABALISM: Introductory works include 'The Magician: His Training and Work' and 'Magick: Its Ritual, Power, and Purpose' both by W. E. Butler. Later, works by Dion Fortune and Aleister Crowley (definately not for the novice). 935 BOOKS OF LORE & MYTHOLOGY: 'The Mists of Avalon' by Marion Zimmer Bradley. Ballantine trade paperback. This Arthurian fantasy novel,which reached the N.Y. Times best-seller list, is truly superlative. It is narrated by Morgan le Fay and so we finally understand that strange antipathy that exists between her and Arthur. The religious and philosophical conflict between the Old Religion and the newer one of Christianity is beautifully portrayed. An excellent choice. The Prydain Chronicles of Lloyd Alexander, a pentology on Dell paperbacks: 'The Book of Three', 'The Black Cauldron', 'The Castle of Llyr', 'Taran Wanderer', and 'The High King'. These award-winning children's fantasies are based on ancient Welsh mythology. Alexander admits that the two authors who most influenced him were J. R. R. Tolkien and T. H. White. The books are also the basis of the recent animation feature from Disney studios. I'm often asked about pagan books to recommend for children. These are them. The Deryni Chronicles of Katherine Kurtz: 'Deryni Rising', 'Deryni Checkmate', 'High Deryni', 'Camber of Culdi', 'Saint Camber', Camber the Heretic', 'The Bishop's Heir', 'The King's Justice' and 'The Quest for Saint Camber', all Ballantine paperbacks. Set in the landscape of ancient Wales, the Deryni are a race with magical powers which must fight for its life against a medieval Church Militant. Kahterine is someone who knows what magic is all about. 'The Once and Future King' and 'The Book of Merlyn' both by T. H. White. Berkely paperbacks. Sparkling books, and my own personal favorites. The final crystalization of centuries of Arhturian romance. The books on which 'Camelot' was based. 'The Weirdstone of Brisingamen', 'TheMoon of Gomrath', 'Elidor', and 'The Owl Service' by Alan Garner. All Ballantine paperbacks. Garner isone of thebest Britishfantasy authors, witha superb sense of local 'color' and folklore. The first two (related) titles are in the heroic quest mold, the third is a story about the four 'hallows' of Arthurian legends, and the fourth is an eerie modern re-creation of the fourth branch of the 'Mabinogi'. 'A Wizard of Earhtsea', 'The Tombs of Atuan', and 'The Farthest Shore' by Ursula K. LeGuin. A trilogy on Bantam paperbacks. This isthe chronicle of ayoung boy who isan apprentice mage. LeGuin, a leading science fiction and fantasy author, has some fascinating things to say about the light side and dark side of magic, and how they're related. And she says it very well, indeed. 'Lammas Night' by Katherine Kurtz. Ballantine paperback. In this case, theauthor of the important Deryni fantasies turns her attention to a historical setting: England in World War II. There is a long-standing tradition that Hitler's thwarted plans for invading England owed a certain something to the many Covens throughout Britain who combined their efforts to stop him. There is even a hint that the Royal Family itself was involved. Ms. Kurtz's historical research is, of course, impeccable. 936 The Charge of the God Listen to the words of the Horned God, the Guardian of all things wild and free, and Keeper of the Gates of Death, whose Call all must answer: I am the fire within your heart... The yearning of your Soul. I am the Hunter of Knowledge and the Seeker of the Holy Quest I - who stand in the darkness of light am He whom you have called Death. I - the Consort and Mate of Her we adore, call forth to thee. Heed my call beloved ones, come unto me and learn the secrets of death and peace. I am the corn at harvest and the fruit on the trees. I am He who leads you home. Scourge and Flame, Blade and Blood - these are mine and gifts to thee. Call unto me in the forest wild and on hilltop bare and seek me in the Darkness Bright. I - who have been called; Pan, Herne, Osiris , and Hades, speak to thee in thy search. Come dance and sing; come live and smile, for behold: this is my worship. You are my children and I am thy Father. On swift night wings it is I who lay you at the Mother's feet to be reborn and to return again. Thou who thinks to seek me, know that I am the untamed wind, the fury of storm and passion in your Soul. Seek me with pride and humility, but seek me best with love and strength. For this is my path, and I love not the weak and fearful. Hear my call on long Winter nights and we shall stand together guarding Her Earth as She sleeps. 937 Shamanic Binding By: Gaffer Maccluiunn There are many "heaven"s, as I see it... One of these, which I go to for information, is the Realm of Spirit Animals. I do the usual preparations for a journey, then halfway up (I use a ricketywooden ladder: my teacher suggested a ladder when I was very young, and I haven't rebuil it yet...It's had many years of almost constant use, and I think that it's time to repair this mental tool...), and though the ladder continues (both up, down, several other ways...) I swing through a little hole and come up underneath an enormous tree. The place is filled with animals (of course) and I can find out from them, generally, whatever I need to know. There's usually something I do in return; I was taught (and believe, since it works for me) that there are essentially five (5) KNOWN ways to relate to a spirit. The first rule, as I believe it, is that no matter what, in any dealing between entity and entity, the relationship MUST be made clear for there to be useful communication. It doesn't matter as much WHAT the relatioship is (although I have preferences), so long as it is clear. The five ways I am aware of are: 1. Binding by Gift. 2. Binding by Love. 3. Binding by Trade. 4. Binding by Spirit. 5. Binding by Weapon. Since the last one is, in MY way of thinking, least desireable, we'll start there: Binding by weapon, for me, is only used when a spirit or entity comes to me with something nasty planned, and only if there is no other way. It is kind of like putting the genie in the bottle (the old Arabian Nights Genies were very tricky, and would just as soon devour someone who lets them free as grant them wishes...): first, you must have superior force, and superior will. And Plenty of Reasons... Binding by Spirit is MUCH more preferable: This is the link you have with your spirit animals: A link from like to like, regardless of form. It usually HAPPENS to you, rather than you CAUSING it to happen. Binding by Trade is offering something in return for what you wish to receive. Not as wonderful an experience as Binding by Spirit, but still worthwhile. It is necessary to find some entity willing to trade, however, and for this the Realm of Animals is where I use it most. After a while, you can get into a routine, whereupon in becomes Binding By Gift: 938 Binding by Gift is when the shaman leaves a gift or gives a gift, in expectation of needing a favor later. This can be considered the case when a spirit comes to you for help, but generally I classify that as Trade, since it is the same as trade, just the other way around. Binding by Gift, you do the thing first: If I need information that I think the Squirrels, for instance, in the Animal Realm can offer, I'll leave out a selection of nuts underneath the pine tree in the fron yard, for I know that there are squirrels which frequent it. Then, later, I'll go up to the Animals and ask for what I need. This originally started as Binding by Trade, where they'd tell me the information I needed to know, and then say, "In Trade, you can leave nuts for the Little Brothers." Now, I do it aforehand, knowing. This is a much more comfortable relationship than Trade, as Trade is generally a one-or-two-time thing, while Gift is something much more meaningful and long-lasting. Binding by Love is actually entering into a friendship (or deeper) with a spirit. Most of the shamans to whom I speak agree with me that the relationship they have with their Spirit Helpers/Guides is a love or lover relationship. Some explain that they are soul-mated to their guides. This makes sense to me, and is the last form of relationship of which I am aware in this context. Hope this was interesting. Let me know. Tapadh Leibh. Gaffer. 939 SPIRITUALITY In order to facilitate clearer communication in an area that very often becomes very "fuzzy" because of specialized or unclear definitions, let us now define the term Spirituality and the sense of its use here. The term "spirituality" (as used here) is reserved for situations that involve personal experiences of unique dimensions of reality that give one's life and general existence a numinous quality. Jung used the term "numinous" for the description of experiences that feel sacred, holy, or out of the ordinary (in the sense of a special feeling of ultimate meaning or reality). Therefore, spirituality characterizes individual relationship to the universe and does not necessarily require a formal structure, collective ritual, or mediation by a priest or other external authority figure. Religionis a form of organized groupactivity that may or may not be conducive to (or even supportive of) true spirituality, depending on the degree to which it provides a context for personal discovery and experience of the numinous dimensions of reality. While at the root of most great religions are the direct visionary revelations of their founders, prophets, seers, and saints, in many instances religions have lost their connection with this vital core over time. Experiencesand mentalstatesinvolving personalencounters with the numinous dimensions of consciousness are of two different types. Included in the first are experiences of the "immanent divine", or perceptions of divine intelligence expressing itself in the world of everyday reality. All of creation - people, animals, plants, and inanimate objects - seems to be permeated by the same cosmic essence and divine light. A person in this state suddenly sees that everything in the universe is a manifestation and expression of the same cosmic energy and that separation and boundaries are illusory. In theology, this is called Monism. This is also the core experience of the "all is illusion" claim in some belief systems. Experiences in the second category do not represent a different perception of what is already known but reveal a rich spectrum of dimensions of reality that are ordinarily hidden from human awareness and are not available in the everyday consciousness. These can be referred to as experiences of the "transcendent divine". A typical example would be a vision of God as a radiant source of light of supernatural beauty or a sense of personal fusion and identity with God perceived in this way. Visions of various archetypal beings, such as deities, demons, legendary heroes, and spirit guides, also belong in this category. Other experiences do not involve merely individual suprahuman entities but entire mythological realms, such as heavens, hells, and purgatories, or various sceneries and landscapes unlike anything known on earth. This seems to be the nature of many reports of Native American "Shamanic Journeyings". 940 What interests those studying practical magic are the practical consequences of personal encounters with spiritual realities. For the people who have had them, the existence of the immanent and transcendent divine is not a matter of unfounded belief but a fact based on direct experience - much as our attitude toward the material reality of our everyday life is based on fist hand sensory perceptions. In contrast, a belief is an opinion about the nature of reality based on a specific form of indoctrination, or reading of religious literature; It lacks direct experiential validation. Yet once again we are brought up against the very difficult problems of integrating personal realities with consensual reality, or at least in integrating them closely enough that they can be discussed in a meaningful manner. Oneof thepractical consequencesof thesespiritual experiences is permanent physiological change in the one experiencing them. There are usually also a set of perceptual changes, as well as (often) an ability to experience more of these episodes and not always with full control over when they will occur. In other words, the whole mind-body-spirit linkage takes on new dimensions and depth, and can become very difficult to understand and manage! To be sure, no one has an experience of this type and remains the same person they were before. A common physiological change that results from these types of experiences is a change in the individuals general state of health. Allergies and allergic type reactions are a typical area of change. Someone who had few allergies may find that they suddenly react strongly to a number of substances that did not bother them previously, and (more often) the reverse also happens. There have also been cases of "spontaneous remission" of long-term ills such as arthritis and rheumatism as well as even one case of cancer known to the author. Theperceptual changes that happencan also be very confusing. People seem to experience a whole new "tone" and new levels of meaning to their everyday perceptions. There is often an increase in the sensitivity in their sight, hearing, smell, taste, and tactile senses, as well as what one person described as a new "depth" to the sensations, i.e. they felt as if all of their senses previously had been muffled or distorted, and now those distortions were removed. Anothercommon phenomenonthat resultsfrom directexperience of the numinous is that further experiences become more likely, and "shifts" in consciousness become facilitated. Some people who do not have a good background in self analysis and "taking charge" of their lives, find that it is very easy to lose control and quickly become unable to deal with the every day world. Even those who are actively seeking and working hard to achieve personal growth and are used to dealing with their innermost thoughts and psychological functionings find these experiences causing a lot of hard work! 941 Monotheism vs. pantheism By: Dan Holdgreiwe The primary meaning of "pantheism" is "the belief that the Divine is identifiable with the forces of nature and with natural substances," and it is this meaning of pantheism which is properly contrasted with "panentheism" (the belief that the Divine is within the natural world but not limited to it). This pantheism *denies* all Gods and Goddesses, at least to the extent that They are understood as anything more than natural forces. Thus if you believe that the Goddess is something more than the physical planet Earth, you are NOT a pantheist; you are a panentheist. A secondary meaning of "pantheism" is "worship that admits or tolerates all gods." As this meaning directly contradicts the primary meaning, persons using the term should be careful to specify which meaning they intend. (Under this meaning, if there is any god whose existance you do not acknowledge -- Satan, for example -- you are NOT a pantheist.) Within the pagan community, the term pantheism is used even more sloppily as a synonym for polytheism and/or animism. This had led many people who don't meet either of the above definitions to mistakenly call themselves pantheists. P> By that, I mean that I believe the Christian God exists, but P> don't necessarily worship that particular deity. If all gods P> and goddesses exist, you can worship one of them (Monotheism), P> without excluding the existance of the rest of them That's not monotheism, that's henotheism. Monotheism is the belief that only one "God" exists. Note, however, that monotheism does not deny the existance of lesser beings (saints, angels, etc.) who might also be called "gods" in a polytheistic system. Note also that Christianity is not truely monotheistic, as it has the top job shared three ways. 942 Modern Pagan Persecutions By: Jonathan Hutchins I wonder about this whole big deal of how unrealisticly paranoid people can get about Paganism. I live here in the real Bible Belt. People get pretty extreme here about religion, although there are places where it's worse. They even refused to install the statue of Ceres that was commissioned for the Kansas State Capitol building because she was a Pagan Goddess. (There followed the three worst grain harvests since the dust bowl.) Still, we have a thriving Pagan community, and not a small share of misguided fundamentalist teenagers rebelling into holywood satanism. We have had a lot of trouble with cases of religious persecution - but not the kind you might think. What has happened has been that a borderline Pagan has imagined or misunderstood something, and started telling all their friends that _somebody_ was being hassled for being a Witch. We have a Rennisance Festival here, and the rumor mill there is boringly predictable. Every year, two stories are guaranteed to make the rounds: One goes that a knife was stolen from a participant, and used by a parton to stab someone. Therefore you can't carry live steel. Funny thing, no one ever seems to actually know either the participant, the patron, or the victim. And responsible people still carry their knives. The other story varries a little; either the adminstration is hassling participants for wearing pagan jewlry (ridiculous - 1/3 of the jewlry sold out there is "pagan"), or someone was planning a circle on the grounds and got hassled about it, or someone actually _had_ a circle and was raided. (How do you do a circle of 100 or so people, and get raided, within 200 yards of all the people camping on site, and not make a single noise?) We've had problems with the Heartland Pagan Festival too. One year, someone started a rumor that there was an objection to our beliefs and practices on the part of the people who owned the camp we'd used. One of the people who was peripherally involved with the planning group took it upon himself to do something. Unfortunately, that something didn't involve checking out the rumor first - he just called the Camp offices and gave everybody who would listen to him holy hell for being religious bigots. Fortunately we were able to explain that he was not an official of the organisation, and we were able to mend things sufficiently that we were allowed to use the camp untill it was sold last year. Unfortunately, we were never quite as well trusted as we had been, and the camp staff lost their new found belief that we weren't all just a bunch of nuts. 943 Why does this happen with so often with Pagans? Those of us who've studied the history of the Christian Church may be aware of the power the church found in being persecuted. It gave them a binding common enemy. It gave them a reason for extremism. It gave their persecutions of heretics legitimacy. It made people willing to sacrifice everything for the church. When true persecution ended, they found goals for the Crusades that carried on the tradition of holy war. Even today, if you watch Fun-D-TV, you will find that they use the false story that the church is a persecuted minority to drum up support an dcontributions, and to justify their actions. Is this what we're after? Do those of us who come from these traditions find it so hard to leave the old habits behind, even when we've dressed them in new forms? Do some of us even see this kind of activity as legitimate? Gods save us from Jehova in drag. We do ourselves more damage with false, imagined, and exagerated claims of persecution than is done against us by all the fundies combined. If we are to be credible, if we are to be taken seriously by the mundane world, if we are ever to be able to mount a real defense against those who would persecute us because of our beliefs, we must refrain from crying wolf. We must be vigilant to apply our critical minds to the accounts we hear, to track them down, and to explain to the people who start and spread them that we are held to a higher standard of truth because we are in the minority. Jonathan. 944 Magick Christians By: Alfgar Maharg Greetings from BaphoNet. Apparently, I fall into the "Non-Traditional Christian" box. I shall now proceed to confuse everybody by refusing to fit into any pigeonhole. I have been for some ten years a member of the New Church ("Swedenborgian"). The 18th century revelations found in the voluminous writings of Emmanuel Swedenborg, renowned scientist, theologiand and visionary, overwhelmed by MAKING SENSE. However, we have yet a considerable way to go in conveying the news to the public at large. On announcing that one is a Swedenborgian, approximately 62% of the population respond with "What church is that?" 29% ask "Is that the Swedish Church?" The rest simply stand there with mouths open. When asked what he was teaching, Swedenborg replied "Two things: that God is one, and that faith is inseparable from charity." Point 1 means that the Lord Jesus Christis the SAME God who made Heaven and Earth and no nonsense about it. Worship is always addressed to Christ, not to any "trinity". Point 2 represents arepudiation of salvation "by faithalone". We hold most emphatically the truth of James: "Faith without works is dead". Naturally, things could not be left so simple. I look forward to discussing the immoderately abstruse issues involved. Just in case you are not confused enough already, I found myself drawn into the pursuit of the so-called "high" occult. This led directly to the formation of the Third Order of St. Michael, which coalesced from the set of esoteric Christians collected around Katheriine Kurtz, and who found the "Deryni Christian" archetype a valid spiritual expression. The principal result so far has been liturgical expression pursued wherever enough of us can be found. Locally I amaffiliated with atemple of the SangrealSodality, a non-sectarian, decentralized, and frighteningly eclectic organization following the broad tradition of the Golden Dawnand its successors, and drawing inspiration and initation from the work of William G. Gray. 945 Polarity and Single Sex Covens By: Marios M> Here's my latest question for theological debate: M> Given the emphasis on male/female polarity within the M> structure of Craft mythology, can a group that is entire M> same sex gay or lesbian legitimately claim to be M> practicing Wicca? Or is it something else pagan, that M> is not Wicca? Please give reasons for your answer... M> I've found this to be a really sticky one. In a word, "YES". Try this on for size: 1. Craft as an immenentalist religion, recognizes the "fact" that individuals contain both "male" and "female" parts. Polarity work takes advantage of this situation. After all, we recognize solitaires as practicing Wicca, so we have already accepted that polarity work may involve only one person. As a logical extension of this: 2. Given that polarity work includes immanent "male" and "female" components, we must assume that a group situation will take advantage of this fact in their workings. But, since polarity work may take place within an individual, the actual genders of the group are unimportant. However: 3. While it can be argued that polarity work is possible, and off necessity, takes place in same sex groups, can we state that they are practicing Wicca? That must depend on how one defines Wicca. Personaly, I would say "Yes", however, the central mysteries of the Craft can be interpreted as demanding a heterosexual couple. 4. I suspect that certain rituals (e.g. the Great Rite) can easily be reworked from their current, heterosexist, form. However, if "practicing Wicca" is defined by a strict adherance to the LITURGY of Gardnerian derivation, then a same sex coven cannot be practicing the TOTALITY of Wicca (or certain of its main rituals). They may, on the other paw, be defined as practicing PART of Wicca. 946 Some Thoughts on the Evolution of Wiccan Ritual By: Paul Hume Undoubtedly (insofar as anything in this mish-mash of magick can be undoubted (g)) the "convergent evolution" thing has a place in the development of the various trads. ie. hitting on similar manifestations of one True Thing. An algorithm stays the same, no matter how you code it. Some of the interesting divergences, f'rinstance... The Quarters: Always a lively discussion (g). Air's in the East. No, it's in the North, etc. The traditional post-GD attributions stem fgrom a system attributed to Egypt, and Egyptian climate. The traditional Wiccan ones make sense in the context of Northern Europe, esp. Britain. (At least the Brit-Trad ones do). The ceremonial (solar variety) magician concentrates on the Equinoxes and Solstices as his major milestones in the wheel of the year, whereas Wicca sticks with the Cross-Quarters as their main events. Again, the solar calendar is an Egypto-Sumerian bugaboo, and more important to agricultural peoples (or so it is suggested) whereas the Cross-Quarters fit the rhythm of birth and growth in herd animals, and thus suggest a tradition that evolved in the herding cultures of the early Celts and Britons (who did not succumb to the siren song of agro-economy until much later). How rigorous these arguments are is open to dispute - they may just be attempts to correlate anthropology and tradition. But they suggest areas of emphasis that separate the two paths, and suggest further the different aspects of Reality that drive them. Paul 947 BELIEFS AND CUSTOMS OF WICCA Not every Wiccan will subscribe to all of these points, but generally they are representative. 1. The divine Spirit is present in all creatures and things: people, animals, plants, stones... 2. The ultimate creative force manifests in both feminine and masculine modes; therefore it is often symbolized as the Goddess and The God. 3. In some covens, both are celebrated equally. In others, The Goddess is given precedence or even celebrated without reference to the God. 4. All Goddesses and Gods are aspects of The Goddess and The God. The aspects most popular in Wicca are the Triple Goddess of the Moon (Maiden, Mother and Crone) and the Horned God of death and rebirth. 5. Reincarnation and karma are valid concepts. Upon death one goes to a state of rest and reflection, and eventually chooses where and when s/he will be reborn. 6. Magick is practiced for positive (helping) purposes: spiritual development, healing, guidance, safety, etc. 7. Rituals are generally performed outdoors when possible, at the New and Full Moons, and at eight Sabbat festivals which mark the progression of the seasons. 8. Magick and celebration are performed in small groups, usually 3 to 13, called covens. These are basically autonomous -- there is no central church authority or hierarchy. 9. There is no holy book, or prophet, no equivalent of the Bible or Jesus or Mohammed. Individuals have access to the divine, and do not require an intermediary. Every initiate is regarded as a priest/ess. 10. The central ethic is "And ye harm none, do as ye will." Whatever energy you send out returns threefold, so it is wise to be kind to others. 11. We should live in harmony with the Earth and Nature, and not exploit them. 12. Though Wicca is a valid spiritual path, it is not the only one. There is no recruiting, and people should be free to choose the path that best fits their needs. 13. The concepts of original sin, sacrifice, redemption, confession, the divinity of Jesus, sinfulness of sex, Judgment, Heaven and Hell, denigration of women, bodily resurrection, and the Bible as divine revelation are not part of Wicca. Neither are Satanism, the Black Mass, desecration of cemeteries, the sacrifice of animals, etc. Copyright (c) 1983 Amber K., Our Lady of the Woods. Used by Permission 948 The Wiccan Faith I cangive youa briefoverview ofWicca. (Idon't speakfor all Wiccans, only myself. There are some differences in the different Traditions.) We believe that the ultimate godhead is unknowable. This doesn't make for a good working relationship with the diety, however. So, we break it down into a Goddess and a God. Different Wiccans worship different Gods/Goddesses. We can utilize *any* pantheon. Some worship Pan/Diana, some Cernnunos/Aradia, Isis/Osiris, and many others. We see our Goddess as being Triple Aspected -- Maiden, Mother, and Crone, and she is reflected in the phases of the Moon -- Waxing, Full and Waning. We see the God as the Lord of Nature, and he is reflected in the seasonal changes. Like Jesus Christ, he dies for the land and the people, and is reborn. In general, we believe in reincarnation and karma. What you call Heaven, we call the Summerlands. We don't believe that Hell exists (or Satan either.) We believe that there should be balance in all things - when the balance is disturbed, that's when 'evil' occurs. Fire, for example is not 'evil'. It could be considered such when it becomes out of balance, as in a forest fire, or house fire. Controlled fire is a useful tool. Anger is not 'evil', but when unbridled can't help but lead to negative things. When properly expressed and balanced with constructive working to correct that which invoked the anger - it, too, can be a useful tool. We regard the Earth as our Mother, and try to have respect for Her by not polluting her and try to live in harmony with Her and Her ways. Women reflect the Goddess, Men reflect the God, so the Wicca have a Priestess and Priest to 'run' the religious services. We call our services circles. This was sort of an "Reader's Digest Condensed Version" of Wicca. Blessed be >>Phoenix<< 949 Origins of The Mandan By: Madoc As a direct lineal descendantof Madoc ab Gwynedd, Princeof Wales and alleged founder of the Mandan tribe, I'd like to shove my two cent's worth in... Madoc (or Madog) was born about 1150, one of four sons of the King of Wales. He and his brothers did not get along at all, and after the King died, Wales was divided 4 ways among his children. Madoc chose not to rule his domain directly, having developed the wanderlust that consumes so many Celts. He was a well-regarded sailor, such that his sea-faring exploits were recorded less than 100 years later by a French historian, and again by Dr. John Dee in the 1500's. Madoc is said to have left Wales with 5 ships, and to have arrived in the New World about 1172 or '73. He landed twice, once in Central America, where he is alleged to have been the "God" that the locals later mistook Cortez for. He then backtracked through the Gulf of Mexico and landed around New Orleans. He packed his men and equipment up the Mississippi, finally stopping due to sickness in his men. He and his able-bodied crew floated back downriver and returned to Wales. Madoc left Wales again around 1176, and returned to the Mississippi river. He supposedly found that his surviving original crew had intermarried with the local Native American populations, and most chose not to return to Wales. Madoc himself may have stayed, as there is no record of his returning to Wales again. Years later, Lewis and Clark heard fantastic tales of "white Indians" who supposedly built forts, spoke Welsh, and fished from "coracles," which are leather boats totally unlike canoes. They were unable to substantiate those claims, although they found many "light-skinned" Native Americans, some of whom had blue eyes and blond or blondish hair and spoke a mish-mash of Souix and something that resembled Welsh in some aspects. These people claimed, unlike their compatriots, that they were descended of a "race of giants" who built their tipis of logs and came from "across the sea" (a sea which they had never seen, by the way) and whose leader (Madoc?) had promised to return for them one day. The local Native Americans whom they lived with supported their claims. The Mandan as a tribe still exist. They speak Souix and live mostly on reservation land in Wisconsin and up into Canada. They traditionally build log cabins and fish from leather coracles. The Mandan claim that they were seperated as an independant tribe because of disease and wars with settlers. They have largely become Souix, and the US government lists the Mandan as Souix. My family traces its roots directly to Madoc through Ireland, where his offspring settled after being evicted from Wales by the British. As the King of England said at the time, "They can go to Hell or go to Connaught." My father is the direct lineal descendant of the Crown, and I am his first-born (and only) son. My father is the legitimate Prince of Wales, and Charles is a Pretender. 950 Documentation: AUTHOR(s): Deacon, Richard, 1911- TITLE(s): Madoc and the discovery of America; some new light on an old controversy [by] Richard Deacon. [1st American ed.] New York, G. Braziller, 1967 [1966] AUTHOR(s): Armstrong, Zella. TITLE(s): Who discovered America? The amazing story of Madoc. Chattanooga, Lookout Pub. Co., 1950. AUTHOR(s): Burder, George, 1752-1832. TITLE(s): The Welch Indians; or, A collection of papers respecting a peoplewhose ancestorsemigrated from WalestoAmerica inthe year1170,with PrinceMadoc, (threehundredyearsbeforethefirstvoyageof Columbus),and whoaresaid nowtoinhabit a beautifulcountry onthe westsideof the Mississipi[!]DedicatetotheMissionarysocietyby GeorgeBurder. London, PrintedforT. Chapman [1797] 35 p. 21 cm. Consists chiefly ofextrats fromthe Gentleman's magazine, 1789-1792, the Monthly magazine, December, 1796, and letters from missionaries and traders. AUTHOR(s): Pugh, Ellen, 1920- TITLE(s): Brave his soul; the story of Prince Madog of Wales and hisdiscoveryof Americain 1170, byEllen Pugh, with the assistance of David B. Pugh. New York, Dodd, Mead [1970] Summary: Discusses the validity of the claims that an obscure Welsh prince landed in Mobile Bay in 1170 and established a settlement that resulted in a tribe of Welsh-speaking Indians. --- 951 The Burning Times, Some "Facts" By: Marios Okay, let's try "another subject". "Facts", a term which derives from the latin factum meaning to make or to do, are constructs. If you "change" history, you automatically change the "facts". Let's take an example: during the so-called Burning Times, aprrox. 200,000 - 500,000 people where executed by either mob action and/or legal action. We will neven know how many people were arrested, sentanced and executed for crimes of witchcraft (and please note that there were several different "crimes of witchcraft" at this time). In the late 1940' and early 1950's, several British Witches and occultists started talking about 9,000,000 "witches" killed. This number appears to have derived not from any research, but rather from an attempt to "one-up" the number of Jews exterminated by the Nazis in WW II. In order to support this contention, the definition of the Burning Times was changed. First, the period of the major whitch hunts was extended from its peak, 1550 - 1675, backwards to the founding of the Inquisition (early 13th century). Second, the figures for judicial executions of heretics, notably the Cathari and the Waldensians, were included in the total. Finally, all judicial executions which took place during the Catholic "civil war" (the Avignon Papacy) were included. In effect, the definition of "witch" was changed to include "heretic". This definitional change is most interesting, since it parallels the definitional change that took place in the Catholic churches construction of demonic witchcraft (see, for example, Ginzburg's "Ecstacies"). The "facts" of the situation where "changed" when the definition of the term "witch" was changed. "Witch" was defined as "not-orthodox" and, as such, included all heretics and non-Christians. To me, the interesting point is that this definition was created not by the Catholic church, but by Gerald Gardner in an attempt to prove that "witches" had suffered more than Jews. What does this say about the idea of "facts"? First, it means that what is a "fact" changes with the definition of terms... in other words, a fact is a human, and therefore inherantly biased, construct. Second, while agreement between opposing biases may be reached on certain "facts", such as the date of a battle, I doubt whether agreement can be reached on the motivations or causes of the battle. Finally, history is basically mythology that is constructed around certain quasi-religious disciplines, e.g. Marxism, positivist science, etc. It is a story that is told and, in the telling, it changes the "facts". Bright Blessings M 952 ASATRU Rathulvf Jamieson +- | Asatru is a term virtually unknown outside pagan circles. It's | the pagans who have no idea what Asatru is that believe that it has | any connection with the Nazis. Maybe you need to explain in more | detail what Asatru is?? I'd be interested in that myself. +- Greetings, Adrienne. I know that Grendel will answer this, however maybe a literal translation won't hurt either. Simply put from a historical view, Asatru is a combination of two words: Ase, pl. Ases [pron. `ace']: The gods and goddesses of consciousnessintheTeutonicpantheon, governingthepowers of sovereignty and physical force (ON Ass; AEsir). troth: Religion, being loyal to the gods, goddesses and cultural values of the ancestors (ON tru, OE treowth). true: Adjectiveform of"troth," canmean "loyal."A "true man" is a man loyal to the gods and goddesses of his ancestors. The word is a compound of asa-, "of the gods (aesir)," and -tru, usually translated as "faith." But this can be misleading. Tru is derived from the same root (deru-) that gave rise to "troth," "truth," "trust," and "true" in English. The root word "deru-" really has to do with something firm, solid, and steadfast. The fact that the word "tree" also comes from this word is significant as well. Therefore it is clear that originally the term had more of the connotatins of our "true" (loyal), "trusting," and "troth" than with the connotations of "faith" or "belief." Belief is the acceptance through an external authority that a given thing is true, and perhaps that some form of "salvation" is dependent on this belief. Troth is based on experience. One trusts that the sun will come up tomorrow because this recurring phenomenon has been experienced in the past. The things that one is commanded to believe in Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Marxism, etc., are precisely those things one cannont experience, or those things known only to pastors, popes, rabbis, imams, commissars, etc. "To trust" therefore is to gain personal experience of the truth of a thing. The term asatru therefore most literally means "gaining experience of the ancestral sovereign gods." Thorsson, Edred. "A Book of Troth." St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn, 1989 This is what I based my belief on, even before I discovered Thorsson's books. I just didn't know the "historical" meaning of the word. I did, however, know the beauty of Asatru (the Troth) even though it was twisted by others. I hung in there, and enjoy one of the greater "freedoms of religion" today because of it. Urdhr, Verdhandi, Skuld! So is was, so it is, so it shall be! - Rathulvf - 953 This article is excerpted from the Rocky Mountain Pagan Journal. Each issue of the Rocky Mountain Pagan Journal is published by High Plains Arts and Sciences; P.O. Box 620604, Littleton Co., 80123, a Colorado Non-Profit Corporation, under a Public Domain Copyright, which entitles any person or group of persons to reproduce, in any form whatsoever, any material contained therein without restriction, so long as articles are not condensed or abbreviated in any fashion, and credit is given the original author.! THE FORTUNE by Richard Myers I've seen them before at carnivals and flea markets -- dark complexion, colorful scarves around their heads, crow's marks around the eyes, often a babe balanced on the hip. They're harmless enough, and I'd never before paid them any mind. Oh sure, storekeepers complain about petty thievery, and a farmer may lose an occasional chicken. But I'm no easy mark for Gypsy women. They leave me alone. So it was strange when I saw two of them near the pawn shops on Larimer Street; and the older woman said, "There's a man on a dangerous journey." I pointed to a newly purchased camp stove under my arm. "Good guess," I said. "Into the wilderness. So what else?" She stretched forth her hand. "For three coins in the palm I shall tell what else." I dug out three quarters and, wishing they'd been dimes, dropped them into her hand. "I see a difficult journey to a remote place where few travel." "Wilderness," I repeated with an edge to my voice. "What else?" "A high place. Very cold." "Winter in Colorado. Another guess. Tell me what I don't know." She dropped the coins into a pocket in her ragged old coat and turned away. As she rounded the corner she paused. "I see death", she said quietly. She was gone. An empty feeling in my belly turned suddenly to laughter when I realized that me and Chester were counting on a little death this very weekend. We were after high-country Wapiti, the majestic Colorado elk that roam the flat-tops. With any luck we'd put death to a couple of 'em before sundown....... I saved the question til we'd packed the gear to a high meadow just below Retribution Peak. I didn't want to seem too anxious for an answer. "Chester, you believe in fortune tellin'?" Chester kept right on settin' up the tent as he chuckled, "That what's got you so quiet? You ain't said a word all the way up the mountain. Someone musta told you a bad one." 954 "Gypsy woman said something about dying in the wilderness." Chester fell silent for the briefest moment before he answered, "Hell, you ain't dead yet, so start drivin' stakes!" "Chester, you don't believe in nothin'" I laughed, "In any case, I'm sleepin' with my rifle to-night." By Saturday afternoon we'd scouted Three-Elk meadow without seeing any sign, so we climbed the high ridges above the beaver ponds to scan the area. It was almost dusk when we headed back through Medicine Spring a ceremonial ground where the Cheyenne once danced the ceremony of the sacred arrow. The Cheyenne were long gone, but in our sights were a pair of the biggest, proudest Wapiti we'd ever seen. The bull had already picked up the swish of our snow shoes when we topped the rise, but Chester brought down the cow with a single shot. Grandpa Elk got away, but we had all day tomorrow to track him down. You might not think a Gypsy woman can see the future; and you might not expect an elk to seek revenge for a lost mate; and I admit that in the dark of the tent I never really saw the instrument of our destruction. But we awakened to a bellowing like a steam train and we fired our rifles in every direction before the tent finally collapsed. I didn't dare move until the morning light showed Chester's skull was cracked, and a Gypsy woman's words were ringing in my ears. ...from RMPJ 12/86 955 THE OMNI EXPERIENCE POWER TRIPS: CONTROLLING YOUR DREAMS Release Date: Thursday, 19 March 1987 A number of techniques facilitate lucid dreaming. One of the simplest is asking yourself many times during the day whether you are dreaming. Each time you ask the question, you should look for evidence proving you are not dreaming. The most reliable test: Read something, look away for a moment, and then read it again. If it reads the same way twice, it is unlikely that you are dreaming. After you have proved to yourself that you are not presently dreaming, visualize yourself doing what it is you'd like. Also, tell yourself that you want to recognize a nighttime dream the next time it occurs. The mechanism at work here is simple; it's much the same as picking up milk at the grocery store after reminding yourself to do so an hour before. At night people usually realize they are dreaming when they experience unusual or bizarre occurrences. For instance, if you find yourself flying without visible means of support, you should realize that this happens only in dreams and that you must therefore be dreaming. If you awaken from a dream in the middle of the night, it is very helpful to return to the dream immediately, in your imagination. Now envision yourself recognizing the dream as such. Tell yoursel, "The next time I am dreaming, I want to remember to recognize that I am dreaming." If your intention is strong and clear enough, you may find yourself in a lucid dream when you return to sleep. Even if you're a frequent lucid dreamer, you may not be able to stop yourself from waking up in mid-dream. And even if your dreams do reach a satisfying end, you may not be able to focus them exactly as you please. During our years of research, however, we have found that spinning your dream body can sustain the period of sleep and give you greater dream control. In fact, many subjects at Stanford University have used the spinning technique as an effective means of staying in a lucid dream. The task outlined below will help you use spinning as a means of staying asleep and, more exciting, as a means of traveling to whatever dream world you desire. 956 Before retiring, decide on a person, time, and place you would like to visit in your lucid dream. The target person and place can be either real or imaginary, past, present, or future. Write down and memorize your target person and place, then visualize yourself visiting your target and firmly resolve to do so in a dream that night. To gain lucidity, repeat the phrase describing your target in your dream, and spin your whole dream body in a standing position with your arms outstretched. You can pirouette or spin like a top, as long as you vividly feel your body in motion. The same spinning technique will help when, in the middle of a lucid dream, you feel the dream imagery beginning to fade. To avoid waking up, spin as you repeat your target phrase again and again. With practice, you'll return to your target person, time, and place. When spinning, try to notice whether you're moving in a clockwise or counter-clockwise direction. - Stephen LaBerge and Jayne Gackenbach Stephen LaBerge, Ph.D., of the Stanford University Sleep Research Center, is also the author of LUCID DREAMING, Ballantine Books, New York, (C) 1985. LUCID DREAMING is a 305 page book which costs $3.95 and is available in the "Psychiatry" or "Self-Help" section of most major bookstores. 957 CHECKLIST FOR A WELL-WORKING GROUP 1. We are clear about our goals and how we intend to achieve them. 2. We know and respect each other well enough to feel very comfortable and attuned working together. 3. Our magickal is ethical, designed for our growth and fulfillment and the benefit of those who request help, and it never used to harm others. 4. We share the responsibilities of making the group work; every individual's contribution is important. 5. We see each other socially outside the group, and support each other through difficulties. 6. We enjoy. there is fun and laughter at our meetings. 7. We work at learning magick. We dig deep, compare different sources, try new techniques, ask pointed questions, do it until we get it right. 8. We keep ourselves healthy and fit in order to more readily channel power and receive insight. 9. We keep our ritual area and tools orderly and clean. 10. We constantly seek knowledge from many sources -- people, books, workshops, other paths... 11. We do not make a virtue of authority and obedience, but treat each other as respected equals (regardless of the formal structure of the coven). 12. We raise genuine power and channel it; our rituals are not tame readings or rote gestures, but filled with energy, vitality, will and purpose. 958 A basic love spell.. (be careful how you use these) Take three cords or strings of various, pleasing pastel colors- perhaps pink, red, and green- and braid them tightly together. Firmly tie a knot near one end of the braid, thinking of your need for love. Next, tie another knot, and another, until you have tied seven knots. Wear or carry the cord with you until you find your love. After that, keep the cord in a safe place, or give to one of the elements- burn and scatter the ashes in the ocean or in a stream. 959 The song is sung to the tune of Amazing Grace. Enjoy! Verna Knapp Amazing grace, how sweet the Earth that bore a witch like me! I once was burned, now I survive, was hung and now I sing. T'was grace that drew down the moon and grace that raised the seas. The magic in the people's will will set our Mother free. We face the East and breathe the winds that move across this earth. From gentle breeze to hurricane our breath will bring forth the change. Turn towards the South and feel the fire that burns in you and me. The spirit's flame will rise again and burn eternally. We greet the West, our souls awash in tides of primal birth. Our tears and blood, our pain and love will cleanse and heal the earth. Reach into the North and know your roots down deep ancestral caves. We find the wisdom of the Crone, Of circles we are made. Amazing earth, enduring life, from death into rebirth. T'is earth I am and earth I love and earth I'll always be. Amazing grace, how sweet the Earth that bore witches like we. We once were burned, now we survive, were hung and now we sing. Goddess bless, so mote it be, Our magic spirals on. Merry meet and merry part and merry meet again. 960 The Hermetic Summoning of The Elements By: Marios OK, here it is. This was originally developed by an old friend and working partner of mine. . (Cirlce area should be completely dark. All people should be inside the circle. A central altar is used with five candles on it: a source candle of gray or pearlescent white or emerald green; a form candle of black; a force candle of white; a fire quarter candle of red; and a lighting taper.) (The HP and HPS should face each other over the central altar) HP: First there was nothing, and the Womb of the Void begat Light (light Source candle) HPS: And that Light gave form to the Void, the form that we call darkness, and that was the first Goddess. (Light Form candle) HP: And the darkness gave to the light potency, power, and that was the first god. (light force candle). Both: From the union of these came Fire, least tangible and most active of all the elements. (light fire candle, hand to 3rd person in the south. they then circumambulate a full 360 degrees and place fire candle in the south, picking up air candle there.) HPS: Fire calmed and made more tangible became air. (light Air candle, circumambulate 270 degrees to the east.) HP: Air flowing with solid form, became water. (light water candle (in east) (circumambulate 180 degrees to the west) HPS: And still, solid water, is earth. (3rd person goes directly to the north side of the altar) All: Thus does all come from the Void, and so shall all return to the Void when creation's day is done. (HP faces east, then south, then zenith. while facing shouts "Fiat". at the same times, HPS faces west, north and nadir and shouts "Fiat". HPS raises both hands from nadir to the centre above the altar, HP lowers arms from zenith to the centre above the altar) Both: Fiat, voluntas mea. (hands should be touching in the centre. 961 Notes: 1. The third person who carries the quarter candles acts as the channel for the energy of the HP and HPS during their invocation. S/he should visualize constructing a ribbon roadway that has landing stops at each elemental area. 2. The "Fiat"s at the end should include a visualization of either an invoking pentagram, or a door opening, or something similar (I have modified the invoking pentagrams to follow the descent lines -- e.g. invoking air would be from fire point to air point). The effort of building the road and the landings is form with minimal force. It is the "Fiat"s at the end which generate the force flows to balance the system. The road itself can be useful for visiting the various elemental kingdoms, but you might find them different from what you expect. Following the road from nadir up to and beyond zenith in an ascending arc is quite good for either deep meditation or projection work. Anyhow, 'nuff stuff for now. I hope you find this useful. Bright Blessings M. 962 LEARNING (K) 1987 by Jehana. Disseminate freely if copied in entirity The learning process can be examined as a three-tiered model (remembering that, as always, the map is almost always not the territory). The three tiers I shall examine are: * Absorption * Integration * Expression Forany reasonableapproximation offull andcomplete learningto have occurred, all three stages are necessary. One might argue that there are different types of learning, and that each of these types have their own requirements; or that science must be learned differently than philosophy, but I think there are fundamental similarities governing the learning of all types of things -- the emphasis and mechanisms may change, but the underlying principles apparently remain. Absorption isthe actof takingthe externaland bringingit into the internal. Absorption may involve the cramming of information for final exams; it may involve the day-to-day experiences of life; it may involve the shattering emotional impact of traumas. However, this emotional impact is not reacted to at this stage of the learning process. Absorption is the coming aware of information, whether for short or long term, from the whole body of constant information bombarding the physical senses at all times. Not all that is witnessed or studied becomes absorbed -- the human mind needs a filtering agent. Integrationis aninternal process,where theknowledge recently gained is integrated with what is already in the mind. No mind ever starts out as a vacuum, despite the efforts of generic television to assume this. Not all that is absorbed is integrated -- that which falls into short-term memory is not; nor is material that is studied simply to know for the knowing's sake. A deep and thourough internal integration of material is not necessary in all fields of study, although to some extent this takes place in all devotees of a subject, whether it be mathematics, engineering, art, or philosophy. This integration leaves its touches upon the person, and will affect his/her filtering for material to absorb in the future. Be advised that some integration is voluntary; while other integration is involuntary. The actual process of integration bears no relation to what Other People Are Doing (although one may integrate a dependency upon others, for instance.) A conscious awareness of integration is fostered in the study of certain religious paths (such as the Craft) and in many of the philosophies, as well as in many of the arts. The necessity for the stage of integration is one reason why the learning of anything of internal value generally takes time -- there are no Instant Philosophies which work. 963 Expression is essential for communication. It is a step shallowly expressed in the regurgitation of information on a quickly-studied exam, but when dealing with philosopy, art, or livelihood, it should be of more durable quality -- in other words, expression should be tempered with the fires of Integration. Expression may be involuntary (the fright reaction from a phobia), or it may be voluntary -- but the most fervent Expression is rooted within the internal regions of the being, and is not the shallow sort of expression related to acting the way other people expect you to act; for simply the purpose of scratching that itch of satisfaction (gaining or giving satisfaction). The most useful forms of Expression occur in taking that information which one has both Absorbed and Integrated, and then Expressing it. However, needless to say, some forms of Expression (ie, phobias) may be well-integrated and absorbed, but are counterproductive to happiness. The true conscious learner must therefore take a hand in what he/she decides to learn/unlearn (the steps involved in the process of Unlearning are the same as those in the process of Learning.) *Absorption and Expressionwithout Integration ismindless and empty reading/living. One may as well be a parrot. Absorption and Integration without Expression is hypocritical and/or schitzophrenic. *Integration and Expression without Absorption permits no external influences to have any bearing on thought -- one may as well be autistic. *Expression without Absorptionencourages fallacies,untruths, and easy answers. All portions of the Absorption, Integration, and Expression cycle are necessary for true learning to take place. While much of the current school system as set up in today's society emphasizes the Absorption and the Expression stages, leaving the Integration process to be assumed, children still do grow up learning to emulate and integrate the values that impinge upon them. (Not all these values are necessarily beneficial -- the learning process does not always rely on those values externally professed, but does pick up on those implied on a deeper level.) Therefore, say, a geography lesson need not be Integrated within the student, as a study of values or personal transformation should most definitely be. A student has, through life experiences, already Integrated a system of functioning; of viewing the world. (Indeed, the student may have Integrated a varying set of systems -- this often leads to internal conflicts, which really should be resolved. Within certain alternative Philosophies, Integration of other ways of viewing the world and the person is done in a more purposeful manner. The student learns that true learning is not in rote memorization but in the acceptance and the working with of all three stages of learning. Also, the student learns to realize that Integration is a personal stage, wherein the information absorbed interacts with that he/she has already Integrated during life -- therefore this Integration may definitely not resemble the Integration process of another student in the same class. Nor should Expression be forced (at least when dealing with the momentous events of a life-philosophy -- it should come from the heart -- in other words, it should come from the Expression of the Absorption and the Integration the student has undergone, rather than from what someone else has decreed to be Proper). 964 THE HEART &WINGS JOURNAL,P.O. Box 574Lebanon Springs,NY,12114, 6/issues yr. $12.00 - a publication of the Sufi Order of the West. HIGH TECHNOLOGY MEETS THE ANCIENT WISDOM By Kenneth Reese Ifyou're like me, you've probably succumbed to some level of consumer electronics mania. Maybe it started innocently with a digital watch or calculator and then worked its way up to a VCR and then to a personal computer. You might even have felt some twinge of guilt when you suddenly realized these gadgets had become indispensable (when one of them breaks!). Perhaps you've felt all this runs counter to your commitment to humanistic values. However, as I see it, new age values and technology are inextricably bound together. Thefact thatmany peoplefirst involvedwith thehuman potential movement were later drawn into the world of high-tech (and vice versa) is a measure of the affinity the two worlds have for one another. Futurist John Naisbitt identifies it as a high tech/high touch polarity. For the majority of people who have feet planted in both the worlds of advanced technology and human potential the affinity has long been obvious, but perhaps not well articulated. Exactlyhow the interests of thetechnology enthusiast and the person on the path merge is not in any way readily obvious. The relationship between the two can be better revealed by considering the various tools of high technology as artificial devices which magnify the human senses and human experience. With such a comparison several observations easily follow. Aclassic example of thismagnification of thehuman senses can be seen in the home video revolution. Technology is used in a straightforward fashion as an extension of the human senses of sight and hearing. This results in a thousand-fold increase in an individual's power to receive impressions. This has been made possible by television combined with more recent inventions -- the communication satellite, back-yard dishes, cable, videocassette recorders, laser discs, and other breakthroughs in video and audio technology. In short, for the person in front of the enormous increase in video and audio choices, there has, in effect, been an amplification of that individual's capacity to experience reality through the medium of sight and sound. And, of course, all this choice is delivered by the exploding global network created by the news, communications, and entertainment industries. Similarly, withthe personalcomputer revolution therehas been an amplification of the mind. An individual using a personal computer has a level of technological power that rivals that once available only to large corporations and governments. This magnification of power may be used to accomplish a variety of directed tasks or in more playful and creative ways. The net result is that the individual may greatly increase personal productivity and expand mental and creative powers by using an electronic tool. 965 All this potential amplification of the power of a single individual by use of these human-made artifacts greatly increases the need for a center or focus around which unprocessed information can be organized in a meaningful fashion. In other words, the individual requires more than ever a sense of purpose simply because the personal capacity for experience and action has been greatly enhanced by these new technologies. At this point, the tie-in to the new age becomes more obvious. There is no more exact a science for the processing of impressions and the discovery of purpose than the ancient spiritual traditions and their modern expressions in transpersonal psychology and the human potential movement. It is no accident that new age people often find themselves thickly involved with new technologies. There is a real void in the midst of the silicon chip revolution for knowledge which can balance one of the effects of the information age -- a communications explosion which threatens individual and cultural stability with an overload of raw, unprocessed information. This overload confuses both individuals and, more dangerously, nations and their political and military institutions. Spiritual traditions have long taught ways for maintaining a center in the face of chaos and offered time-tested techniques for controlling the senses, disciplining the mind, and discovering purpose and right action. Thisknowledge isnow applicableat bothan individualand global level. Ancient wisdom has never been more relevant than it is today, to help guide and focus the tremendous power unleashed by the electronic awakening of the planet. Esoteric knowledge has been sought throughout the ages by a select few as a response to an inner call to discover personal meaning in life. Today, the growth of a planet- wide communications network both enerates the need and provides the means for the spiritual quest to become of vital global importance. The enthusiasm ofsome futurists(such as JohnNaisbitt whoends his international best-seller 'Megatrends' with the line 'My God, what a fantastic time to be alive!') is a reflection of the tremendous Power for Good inherent in technological advances. But high technology is without a mind or a soul unless it is guided by an intelligence more powerful and compassionate than simple human cleverness. Ancient wisdom provides the vehicle for such an Intelligence. Three decades after the threat of planetary annihilation was delivered to humanity on a silver platter of scientific achievement, it is gratifying that at least the instruments for planetary salvation and evolution have been delivered by the same means. However, this possible salvation is a process which can only be achieved by each one of us using the power of our lives and all the tools at our disposal in positive, creative, and purposeful ways. The myth of technology saving us from ourselves was long ago proven false. Salvation for humanity is not a scientific formula but a very human one -- the individual heart in its search for God multiplied by the number of people on this planet. 966 Helpful Hints for a Nearly Extinct Species Submitted satirically by Haragano Let's get down to basics. Being the leader of a group is more than just the hard work of raising dust devils in the back yard or zapping a friend's TV antenna so they can get HBO. Leading a group offers a lot of perks. You get a lot of ego strokes, you get to divide up babies just like Solomon and you even get to keep the leftovers from the potlucks at moon feasts. After all you have put in a lot of long, hard hours and cashed in a lot of empties to win the coveted title of "High Poop-di Ha of the Infinite Invisibility". And you want to keep it! The bottom line, the final word in keeping your position on top of the heap is spelled P-O-W-E-R. These hints are concerned with helping you keep it. In the busy modern craft of today there are many ways that your power base can be erroded. The two most likely ways you can end up preaching to an empty circle are through the insiduous inroads made by INFORMATION and DISCUSSION. These twin curses have upset more High Poop-di-Has than Carter has little liver pills. Information is the worst threat. The more a follower is acquainted with history, anthropology, psychology, socio-dynamics ... really, any area that requires an individual to exert himself mentally, you are in for questions you don't really want to answer. The very best way to deal with this sticky situation is to avoid it. Recruit the immature and the fanatic. They don't bring really tasty goodies to feasts, but they are good ego boosters. They are expendable and feircely loyal for no particular reason. If you find you are being pestered by an "intellect" (they should have never gotten through your screening) you have to quickly learn to manage information more effectively. Don't worry. Managing information is easier than it seems. Newscasters do it every night. First, Adopt an attitude of "ask me anything", then make sure you don't have any answers and don't know where to get them. Create a vacuum! Yes, nature abhors a vacuum but it is your strongest weapon in the war for ignorance. Second is the wild goose chase, atried and true method of dealing with anyone who persists in asking questions. Send a troublesome individual on a few of these. Tire them out, and they will go away sooner or later. When they leave, the stage is set for you to shake your head solemnly and expound at length on how they were not ready to learn what you had to offer. This act is very impressive to newcomers. Reassure your followers that they don't have to keep up on current thoughts in and about the craft. After all, books and magazine subscriptions are expensive. Imply that they will learn all that they need from you by hinting at the "secrets of the craft" that yet await them. If they are adamant about reading, call their attention only to those items that reinforce your point of view (you need all the backup you can get). The Xian (as in Xmas) fundamentalists have developed this sort of information management into an art form. "Information Management is next to Godilness". I'm sure Mr. Falwell has that embroidered on a pillow slip somewhere. You might want to write him for a needlepoint kit. 967 ON TO DISCUSSION... Discussion with other groups must be limited. If they don't share your point of view, all contact with them should be eliminated. After all, your immature followers do mature and fanatics mellow out. The free exchange of differing ideas has a justifiablely bad reputation for expanding an individuals craft viewpoint. And THAT is deadly to the sacred position of High Poop-di Ha. There is an effective means of terminating troublesome contacts with other groups, while at the same time confirming your position as the center of attention. It is the practice of the "Fine Art of Self-Righteous Indignation"! The premier example of this was the medieval Church. When it met with a conflicting view, such as a scholar pointing out that the Church was rewriting history or physics, the Church would denounce him as a "minion of Satan". Usually the scholar was hauled off and put to the Question. What's the truth, more or less, compared to the self Righeous Indignation of God's Chosen....right? Remember, you haveto slam the door tightly on any new ideas! This takes dramatic measures. You don't want conflicting information coming in, and you certainly don't want your s/h/e/e/p/ followers wandering off. Pick a public occasion and invade a circle or burst into a study group. Most importantly, make sure your group is around you. After all, the coming performance is really for them. Rant, pound your breast, whatever you need to do, to get across the idea of YOU as the poor, persecuted victim. Make this crystal clear to your group and they will stick to you like you were dipped in crazy glue. If anyone in your group has ever had a course in group dynamics, send them on a wild goose chase that evening. They might tumble to what you are up to, and besides they are probably asking too many questions anyway. When facing the m/i/n/i/o/n/s/o/f/S/a/t/a/n/ opposing group, be personally offensive if you can. Call them picky, heretical, egotistical, perverse, etc. Anything you can get away with (wailing in the background is a nice touch). To keep your group successfully insulated from differing ideas, you have to clearly label the opposition in the minds of your followers. People just LOVE tags! Now, this next point is important, so listen up! You must make it clear that you want no further contact with the opposing group. Try to affect a tone in your voice that conveys "this is a regrettable decision but it just has to be", like the tone Billy Graham takes on when he talks about sinners. This gives you a twofold bonus. First, it gets the word to "them" in no uncertain terms and, second, it gets the word to your people that it would not be wise for anyone who wants to remain a part of your group to have any contact with "those" you have just judged unacceptable. This sort of frontal assault generally alienates both groups as well as every individual in them. There will be no information exchange, no open discussion and very little growth. But what do you care, you're safe. 968 One warning though; If for any reason you think the other group will simply laugh at your overacting, don't chance a face-to-face confrontation. Keep the performance within your own group. If you have been a good information manager that should be effective enough. Although you are one of the last "High Poop-di-Ha's of the Infinite Invisibility" in the craft, you belong to an ancient society that can be traced through most of the world's major religions. You exemplify rigidity, closed-mindedness and religious manipulation. You have a lot to be self-righteous about! In order to pervent your kind from dying out completely, you have to remember to stringently restrict the information flow to your group and terminate all open discussions with outsiders holding differing views. If you take to heart these few pointers you won't go the way of the Great Auk and the Passenger Pigeon. 969 Channeling By Jast Channeling has become a popular phenomena in the last several years. We see it featured in News-Magazines and on talk shows. We read articles about it, and bookshelves everywhere now hold volumes of books written by channeled entities, with more appearing every month. Some channeled sources have gained a great deal of notoriety, drawing large crowds for seminars and workshops, often at a steep price. . How can we better understand this sudden outpouring of information? Webster defines "channel" as: " a means of access, a route". In the context of New Age work, channeling provides an access-way through which communication can be achieved between planes of existence. Channeling is a route through which those who are NOT focused in physical reality can give information to those who ARE focused in physical reality. . Though it may seem to be a fairly recent phenomena, channeling in various forms has existed as long as humankind. The most common form of channeling, in fact, is one we all have experienced: That sudden helpful insight that occasionally comes to us from "out of the blue". This form of channeling has created many works of art and has helped us find solutions to seemingly unsolvable problems. Unlike other forms of channeling, this inspiration is always available to us and whether we receive it rarely or often may simply depend on our receptivity and openness. . Dreams are another avenue through which channeled information can reach us. In the dream state we are open and spiritually attuned, creating an un-obstructed gateway through which Universal knowledge can flow. While the dream channel and inspiration are both valid routes of channeling, dreams, for many people, are more easily ignored. We tend to respond to and use those insights which inspire us. . The most spectacular form of channeling is, of course, "Trance Channeling". In this technique, the channel gives up the use of his or her body by entering a trance state, allowing the "source" to speak directly to a third party. . Although most trance channels work with only one source, sources can be a number of things or beings. Many believe that channeled "sources" reflect the channel's subconscious mind or a "collective unconscious". . Channeled material may also flow from one's "Higher Self". Information communicated to us through this Source definitely "counts" as channeled material, for our "Higher Selves" are not focused in physical reality. Others may channel material from the Cosmic Mind or from the God -Goddess-All-That-Is. . Most channeled material, however, comes to us from spirit guides or Masters and, ultimately, it is the material which is important regardless of who or what we believe our source to be. 970 Another way of communicating with ones "source" is through "Automatic Writing". In this form of channeling, the channel first meditates then sits with a pen and paper or a typewriter and allows the source to write. Meditation should be practiced each time before automatic writing since meditation puts us at peace and makes us more receptive to true spiritual sources. . The technique for automatic writing is fairly simple: After meditating, sit in a comfortable position holding a pad of paper and a pen, resting the point of the pen on the paper. Keep the body relaxed and ask if there is a "source" present. Stay relaxed and just wait for writing to begin. . At first the writing may be unreadable, just fine little scribbles that mean nothing. After some practice, however, the scribbles will become readable words and phrases which allow the source to identify themselves and discuss whatever subject we wish. Success may not be achieved in the first few sessions. It may take time and daily practice to develop a strong connection but it is well worth the effort. . No matter what technique we use to channel our information, it is very important that we not follow blindly. Until we are satisfied with their believability, each of our sources should be regarded with a certain amount of healthy skepticism. We should examine all channeled material with a detached and questioning mind. . Although the material may vary in content, there are certain qualities which will always be present in information which is "channeled" by a true spiritual source. Such information will be positive in outlook and will always direct us toward the spiritual path. Since our sources will always try to help us as much as they can by giving us sound and usable advice, sources who attempt to dazzle us with incomprehensible garbage should be regarded with suspicion. A true source will not lie nor will they gossip. Our guides will not tell us to do things, and they cannot predict the future because the future is always changing. . When we attempt to channel our spirit guides, it is important to keep these points in mind. Non physical entities have "personalities" just as physical ones do. Someone whose attitudes were negative, or depressed, in LIFE, might carry remnants of these qualities into spirit life. Edgar Cayce was once quoted as saying: "The only difference between a LIVE Episcopalian and a DEAD Episcopalian is that one is DEAD and one is ALIVE." . In reality, there is no such thing as communication with the "dead". We tend to see life in physical terms but LIFE is a SPIRITUAL reality which, for us, is presently housed in a physical form. . Though misguided entities can not harm you physically, their influence could produce negative side effects which could make your experience of channeling less fulfilling or pleasant, just as being around ANY negative personality might tend to do. For this reason it is important to establish a secure system of protection and awareness when attempting to channel. Observing and following these giudelines can protect us from the inevitable confusion which results from contact with these misguided "sources". 971 A certain amount of preparation is also necessary if we hope to be a clear and responsible channel. With this as our goal, it is probably not advisable that we attempt any form of channeling until we have attained some degree of proficiency at meditation. . Meditation makes us more centered and loving. It also acts as a shield against contact with negative spirit personalities. Meditation should be practiced daily, for besides facilitating our ability to channel clearly, it is the most important thing we can do to expand our spiritual lives. . Your spirit guides can become life-long friends and advisors as they have a wonderful outside view of our lives and life in general. They have access to information that we could not otherwise obtain. They help to deepen our understanding of ourselves and help us through our times of crisis. Contacting these spirit friends is not difficult. There is no loss ofcontrol of our bodies and nothing to fear for we can quit any time we choose. . Spirit friends, just like our friends in the physical world, should always be treated with respect. They should not be expected to entertain our friends or answer a lot of trivial questions. (If it is important to us, then it is not trivial.) Probably the most serious mistake we can make, however, is to become too dependent on our guides as this is the one thing that will cause us to lose them. Like any true friend, our guides do not want us to count on them too heavily. . The process of channeling our spirit guides is truly a great adventure. It may take weeks or months to develop but it is an amazing process and will bring invaluable results to those who persevere. Good luck and happy channeling. 972 Research on porn, Pagan ideals By: Russell Williams Because several people in this discussion have cited unnamed studies to support their views, I'll just throw in a few research results here. I've been researching the topic of societal attitudes toward sexuality, with an emphasis on the religious origins of sex-negative attitudes. Apropos the current discussion, here's some info from *Pornography and Sexual Aggression*, Ed: Malamuth & Donnerstein. Like virtually all such research, it is focussed on hard-core pornography, violent pornography, and violent films (e.g. Friday the 13th, Straw Dogs, etc.) Donnerstein is a leading researcher in the field, and his fndings were loudly misrepresented by the Meese commission. He found that the key variable in increasing violence toward women *in a laboratory setting* was violence, not sex. The findings on violence are consistent with other findings on behavioral modeling Q behavior depicted as acceptable becomes more acceptable to the viewer. Some studies have not controlled for the content of portnographic material used in the research: was it somewhat violent? Did it have a plot or was it just scenes of sex? One study found that after viewing non-violent portn, men exhibited a slight increase in aggressiveness toward men and a slight decrease in aggressiveness toward women Several studies have demonstrated that individuals with a negative sexual-socialization history rate their affective and evaluative responses to erotica as negative while those with a positive history of sexual experiences express positive affective-evaluative responses to sexual stimulation. Individuals found to rate high on the trait of sex guilt react to erotica with more negative emotions, including disgust, than those rating low on sex guilt. Likewise, authoritarianism is positively related to negative emotions, higher judgements of the pornographic character of sexual stimuli, and the placing of legal restrictions on their availability. Erotophobes (those reacting negatively to explicit sexual imagery of coitus and oral sex) have more negative sexual-socialization experiences, more limited sexual experience, and more conservative sex-related attitudes than erotophiles. Interestingly, only the erotophobes reported an increase in sexual activity from the pre- to post-exposure periods (it is unclear whether the activity or the reporting increased). In the standard experimental setup for media / aggression research (subjects watch film, are then placed in artificial situation designed to anger them, then given an opportunity to express agression at the focus of their anger), people who enjoyed and saw porn films less were more likely to increased aggression after viewing porn. (This is one of those studies that didn't specify what films they were using). Note that A=>B does not mean that B=>A, and we are talking about correlation coefficients significantly less than 1.0. In other words, do not interpret these studies to mean that individuals expressing negative attitudes toward Playboy, here or elsewhere, are high on sex-guilt scales. 973 Donnerstein notes that instead of using research on the behavioral effects of sex and violence in media to inform public policy, it is usually just grist for a propaganda mill. It's twisted to suit someone's purpose when convenient, and ignored otherwise. Some have also argued that "if it's shown to cause harm, it should be banned," or even "if some women feel it harms them, then it shouldn't be viewed". Several caveats should be kept in mind: 1. Virtually all research on pornography is based on "laboratory experiments", but some of these have been several months long and have includeed reporting of non-laboratory behavior. There is good evidence that some of these results *can* be applied to real-world behavior. 2. Very few of the research results cited on "pornography" apply to Playboy, whether you personally would classify Playboy as pornography or not. 3. Demonstrating the harmful nature of violent pornography and deciding to ban it are two separate issues. No society bans things strictly based on a cutoff level of "amount of scienti^cally provable harm" done. In the U.S., we tend to be biased toward allowing any speech or writing except for that proved directly harmful to someone. Major restrictions on speech fall in the areas of national security, fraud, and slander or libel. The major exception to this is sexual speech, which has been suppressed without regard to its measurably harmful effects or lack thereof. There has been much more call to ban "Lady Chatterley's Lover", "Devil in Miss Jones," or even Playboy than "Mein Kampf" or material that demeans women in a non-sexual way. As for my own biases, I completed a college major in Women's Studies and am a former member of Women Against Violence in Pornography and Media. I am a Witch, a worshipper of the Goddess, and consider myself a feminist. I became disillusioned with WAVPAM after discovering that they seriously misrepresented the character of most pornography. I also met many women who felt that WAVPAM and women like Andrea Dworkin were just another group of authoritarians trying to tell them what they should think and what "acceptable" sexual feelings were. The denouncements of S/M women by feminists in the 1980s sound almost identical to the denouncements of gay women by straight feminists in the 1960s. Fifteen years ago, I tried to read everything Robin Morgan wrote. Today I try to read everything Susie Bright writes. I now believe that attempted enforcement of "correct " sexual feelings and attitudes is a much greater threat to the freedom of women (and men ) than is sexually explicit material. I feel no obligation to cease practicing my religion because some people believe it is harmful, and I feel no obligation to refrain from viewing sexually explicit material because some people think it is harmful. 974 The Wiccan Rede says "an it harm none, do as you will," but of course there is a huge gray area in trading off perceived harm against personal freedom. Since becoming a Pagan my requirements have gone up for demonstrating concrete and signi^cant harm before removing someone else is freedom. Cult hunters who rail against Satanism and Witchcraft but say "of course they're protected by the first amendment" are really trying to restrict our religious freedom. They increase intolerance toward non-traditional religions and try to pass laws restricting them. So too do many who crusade against pornography but say "we donUt favor censorship" try to restrict our sexual freedom. They increase intolerance toward alternative sexual lifestyles and often try to pass laws restricting sexuality. Is Jesse HelmsU well-being or freedom in danger from Pagans, or are we in danger from him? He thinks heUs defending himself and other God-fearing people from the evils of Witchcraft. Is Andrea Dworkin in danger from Susie Bright, readers of porn, and S/M practitioners, or is their freedom in danger from her? She thinks sheUs protecting herself from the rapists generated by pornography. To put it more colorfully, my right to swing my arm stops at your nose, but I reject convoluted theoretical definitions of your nose. 975 A Minister Speaks Out on the Psychic and the Devil by J. Gordon Melton In the late 1960's, the psychic truly came of age as a major competitor of some forms of Christian faith. No longer could it be dismissed as foolishness and because of this new realization the 1960's also saw the birth of a new type of literature in which fundamentalist Christians attack the psychic as being "of the Devil." Asa minister of theGospel I often amcalled upon to evaluate this "antipsychic" literature. My interest in psychic and spiritual healing, as well as church history, is well known and laymen, having added a new depth to their faith through experiencing psychic reality are concerned that their fellow Christians should speak so harshly of them. At the same time, my non-Christian acquaintances in the psychic community consider the literature a 20th-Century form of witch-hunting and ridicule it as an expression of "Christian love." Theliterature of which Ispeak consistsof numerous pamphlets and a few books, some claiming to be written by former mediums or psychics now converted to conservative evangelical Protestantism. A few of these booklets are from Reformed or Baptist writers but by far the greatest number represent the Protestant Pentecostal perspective. (Pentecostals are those Protestants distinguished by a belief that speaking-in-tongues, or glossolalia, is prima facie evidence of the baptism of the Holy Spirit.) Their major argument is that the Bible condemns all psychic activity and they cite a number of both Old and New Testament passages (Deuteronomy 18:9-12;I Samual 28;Acts 8; I Timothy 4:1) to make their point. The material is accompanied by the warning that these devices of Satan shall increase in the latter days and are signs of the end of time.Satan is a major figure in the literature, especially in the writings of Hal Lindsey, author of several popular books on prophecy, who seems determined to prove Satan's existence. The Church of Satan of Anton LaVey, although a minor force even in occult circles, always is given a large coverage and the remaining psychic community is wrongly associated with him and his antiChristianity. One is tempted to dismiss this literature as the ravings of people who know little or nothing about their topics. Even the converted mediums seem to be the ones who flunked their training courses in basic psychic development. In fact on a theological level the material is all but worthless. Whenthe Pentecostal says that something is "of the Devil" he really is saying in the strongest possible way that he does not like it and disagrees with it. But for someone who does not accept this world view, there is no common standard to judge the Devil's tastes. I personally think that cooked carrots are the Devil's favorite food (with boiled okra running a close second). Who is to prove me wrong? Certainly not those Devil-worshipping carrot eaters. Satan's deceit is manifested by his inclusion of vitamin A in carrots so people will think they are "good" food! 976 There is noappeal then frompersonal taste,just as thereis no appeal from divine revelation. One can only hope that a new dislike will arise to replace the psychic as the "Devil's" main manifestation. On apastoral level, however, theantipsychic literature takes on some importance. Almost weekly I hear from laymen who have been victimized by well meaning if fanatical acquaintances who challenge them with their devil theology. It's one thing to read a book. Its quite another to have a friend or relative say that something you are doing is satanic and draw a line that places you outside the church. Such wellmeaning but misguided concern is reminiscent of the Inquisition that tortured people out of loving concern for their souls and then killed them quickly lest they turn again to their sin. It is for these victims that I write. Hopefully, by discovering answers which will blunt the major points of the attack on the psychic, they will find a shield from the barrage of their Christian brethren. * * * * * If any central charge can be leveled at the Pentecostal devil-psychic theory, it is shallow Biblicism. As one of my Bible teachers warned me, "A text out of context becomes a pretext." The antipsychic literature is rife with texts out of context. Typical is the constant repetitions of the Deuteronomic prohibitions against certain kinds of psychic activity. "When thouart come into theland which the Lordthy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord thy God doth drive tham out from before thee." (Deuteronomy 18:9-12.) Two problems immediately arisein any modern use ofthis text. First it contains several Hebrew words which appear nowhere else in Hebrew literature and are untranslatable. They were translated during the rule of England's James 1 when witchcraft trials were popular and terms useful in those trials were inserted into the text. While we know the prohibitions are against certain forms of divination, we do not know specifically which ones. These prohibitions must, however, be set within the context of "accepted" means of divination: dreams (Genesis 41), the Urim and the Thummin, a Quija board-like device (Exodus 28:30), precognition (Judges 4:4), casting lots (Acts 1:26) and the psychic experience (I Samual 9, particularly verse 9). Incertaincontexts, suchas theconflict withCanaanite religion (particularly the blood-sacrifice cult of Moloch), practices associated with divination are prohibited. But in a differing context (Israel's own religion and in the early church) divination was an accepted practice (Numbers 27:21, Acts 1:26). 977 The secondproblem with theuse ofthis textconcerns itspresent binding force on the church. While it may be a matter of argument whether or not the text is binding, it seems for anyone who accepts the "whole Bible" the commands surrounding the prohibitions are as relevant as the divination prohibition. Thus anyone whowishes to usethis text asliteral commandtoday should also be prepared to stone stubborn children (Deuteronomy 21:18), keep the feast of booths (Deuteronomy 16:13) and accept polygamy (Deuteronomy 21:15). Asthese versesshow, thiswhole section ofDeuteronomy consists of legalisms which have little or no relevance today and were only valid in the context of Israel's struggle with the Canaanites. * * * * * A major complaint of conservative Christians is that liberal Christians see them as being all alike, failing to recognize significant differences of doctrine and lifestyle exist amoung Holiness people and Pentecostals, Billy Graham and the Reverend Ike, Baptists and Plymouth Brethren, Wesleyans and Reformed. Conservatives strongly deny any association with the weird and radical fringe that is part of their movement, such as those fundamentalists who espouse bigoted racial theories of the donning of ascension robes or free sex practices. Likewise the psychic communityresents the naive and ignorant lumping of psychic research and parapsychology with healing, meditative practices with witchcraft, yoga with hypnotism, astrology with the tarot, or Spiritualism with satanism and black magic. Such an approach to the psychic is the lowest form of the polemic. While interests in the psychic often lead to exploration of a number of areas, most people in the field have one or two central concerns. (My own interests are psychic and spiritual healing, prayer and meditation.) While one learns about many things one's involvement usually is in the specific area that is most rewarding personally. Pentecostal claims that involvement in the psychic leads to possession are plainly false. Such involvement by people who are emotionally unstable or who have immoral motives can lead to possession-like phenomena, especially when such people dabble with automatic writing, Quija boards or seance activity. But such phenomena are no more prevalent than those caused by speaking-in-tongues which also affects the deep levels of the psychic. Any kind of psychic activity -glossolalia included- can and does lead to possession phenomena in the unprepared and unstable (see "The Dangers of Psychic Development" by Harmon H. Bro, October-November 1970 Fate.) 978 Finally, thecentral problem ofthe antipsychic materialis its orientation towards the negative, toward evil and the devil. Such a book as Hal Lindsey's "Satan Is Alive and Well" and Derek Prince's works on the demonic are psychologically dangerous literature. They are major causes of the phenomena they seem most to abhor. A simple psychological principle is at work. As Aldous Huxley explains in "The Devils of Loudon", "No man can concentrate his attention upon evil or even upon the idea of evil and remain unaffected. To be more against the devil than for God is exceedingly dangerous. Every crusader is apt to go mad. He is haunted by the wickedness which he attributes to his enemies; it becomes some sort a part of him. Prince, Lindsey and cohorts are pouring their energy into fighting Satan. They are creating an atmosphere in which it is the "in thing" to be freed from a possession. Lonely, bored and highly suggestible people are only too happy to respond with the called-for symptoms. At a mass meeting if you produce a paper bag, someone will be happy to regurgitate a "demon" for you. Theologically, Isympathize withthePentecostals. Theirleaders and writers certainly recognize the theological attack the psychic represents for them. For years they have been telling their followers that tongues and healing "miracles" represent a direct supernatural activity and are a self-authenticating sign of the Holy Spirit. Considering tongues an outward sign of the baptism of the Holy Spirit within is crucial to the Pentecostal position. And psychic research applied to the "supernatural" activities often results in a denial of their supernaturalism. If non-Pentecostals and even non-Christians can do these things, their value as a sign of baptism is ended. Pentecostalistsdenouncenon-Christianphenomenonas"counterfeit miracles." Discussing healing, one Pentecostal writer says, "We can see that this gift, like all the other gifts of the spirit, can be either from God or from Satan. The counterfeit must be in appearance as good as the real thing, otherwise it would not fulfill its aim." When Jesus was accused of working satanic miracles (see Mark 3:20-26) his reply was that a house divided cannot stand, a rejoinder that still is valid. The ideaof "counterfeit miracles" is asmuch a problem to the Pentecostals as it is to the psychic, moreover. If counterfeit miracles exist, than no instance of speaking-in-tongues can be considered a sign of the baptism of the Holy Spirit until it has been tested. Like all Christian experience the baptism is signified only if the fruits of the spirit follow. Anyone can speak in tongues or be a channel for miraculous healings. Only those persons filled with the Spirit can bring forth love, patience and kindness (Galatians 5:22). Pentecostals have no corner on the fruits-of-the-spirit market. In conclusion, involvement inthe psychic clearly isvalid for the Christian, provided that involvement is done in a sane self-conscious context. I bid my Christian brethren cease their harsh words and uninformed polemics. Let us unite against our mutual psychic enemy, the perverted phenomena that can wreck a life as surely as can alcohol or narcotics. Allegiance at any particular theological principle should not keep us from that fellowship we all desire. Reprinted with permission of FATE Magazine. 979 THE ELEMENTS TheElements havebeen apart ofman'sancient andarcane lore since its inception in pre-historic times. Different traditions associate them with various things. The following list of correspondences comes from Starhawk's "The Spiral Dance." AIR: Direction: East. Rules:Themind,allmental,intuitiveandpsychicwork, knowledge, abstract learning,theory, windswept hills, plains, windy beaches, high mountain peaks, high towers, wind and breath. Time: Dawn. Season: Spring. Colors: White, bright yellow, crimson, blue-white. Signs of the Zodiac: Gemini, Libra, Aquarius. Tools: Athame, sword, censer. Spirits: Sylphs, ruled by King Paralda. Angel: Michael. Name of the East Wind: Eurus. Sense: Smell. Jewel: Topaz. Incense: Galbanum. Plants:Frankencense,myrrh,pansy, primrose,vervain, violet, yarrow. Tree: Aspen. Animals: Birds. Goddesses: Aradia, Arianrhod, Cardea, Nuit, Urania. Gods: Enlil, Khephera, Mercury, Shu, Thoth. FIRE: Direction: South. Rules:Energy, spirit,heat,flame,blood, sap,life, will, healing and destroying, purification, bonfires, hearth fires, candle flames, sun, deserts, volcanoes, eruptions, explosions. Time: Noon. Season: Summer. Colors:Red,gold,crimson,orange, white(thesun'snoon light). Signs of the Zodiac: Aries, Leo, Saggitarius. Tools: Censer, wand. Spirits: Salamanders, ruled by King Djin. Angel: Ariel. Name of the South Wind: Notus. Sense: Sight. Jewel: Fire Opal. Incense: Olibanum. Plants:Garlic,hibiscus, mustard,nettle,onion,red peppers, red poppies. Tree: Almond, in flower. Animals: Fire-breathingdragons, lions, horses(when their hooves strike sparks). Goddesses: Brigit, Hestia, Pele, Vesta. Gods: Agni, Hephaestus, Horus, Vulcan. 980 WATER: Direction: West. Rules: Emotions,feelings, love,courage, daring,sorrow, the ocean, the tides, lakes, pools, streams, and rivers, springs and wells, intuition, the unconscious mind, the womb, generation, fertility. Time: Twilight. Season: Autumn. Colors: Blue, blue-green, green, gray, indigo, black. Signs of the Zodiac: Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces. Tools: Cup. Spirits: Undines, ruled by King Niksa. Angel: Raphael. Name of the West Wind: Zephyrus. Sense: Taste. Jewel: Aquamarine. Incense: Myrrh. Plants: Ferns,lotus,mosses,rushes, seaweed,water lillies, and all water plants. Tree: Willow. Animals: Dragons(asserpents),dolphinsandporpoises, fish, seals and sea mammals, water-dwelling snakes, all water creatures and sea birds. Goddesses: Aphrodite, Isis, Mariamne, Mari, Tiamat. Gods: Dylan, Ea, Llyr, Manannan, Osiris, Neptune, Poseidon. EARTH: Direction: North. Rules:Thebody,growth,nature, sustenance,material gain, money, creativity, birth, death, silence, chasms, caves, caverns, groves, fields, rocks, standing stones, mountains, crystal, jewels, metal. Time: Midnight. Season: Winter. Colors: Black, brown, green, white. Signs of the Zodiac: Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn. Tools: Pentacle. Spirits: Gnomes, ruled by King Ghob. Angel: Gabriel. Name of the North Wind: Boreas, Ophion. Sense: Touch. Jewel: Rock crystal, salt. Incense: Storax. Plants:Comfrey,ivy,grains:barley,oats,corn,rice, rye, wheat. Tree: Oak. Animals:Coworbull, bison,snakes(earth-dwelling), stag. Goddesses: Ceres, Demeter, Geae, Mah, Nephthys, Persephone, Prithivi, Rhea, Rhiannon. Gods: Adonis,Athos,Arawn, Cernunnos,Dionysus,Marduk, Pan, Tammuz. 981 SPIRIT /ETHER: Direction: Center and circumference, throughout and about. Rules: Transcendence,tranformation, change,everywhere and nowhere, within and without, the void, immanence. Time: Beyond time, all time is one. Season: The turning wheel. Colors: Clear, white, black. Tools: Cauldron. Sense: Hearing. Plant: Mistletoe. Tree: The flowering almond. Animal: Sphinx. Goddesses: Isis, the Secret Name of the Goddess, Shekinah. Gods: Akasha, IAO, JHVH. 982 CANDLES Candleshavebeenusedfor morenaturallightinginritual work as well as focal points and concentration aids for centuries. Each different color has a different meaning for both internal and external uses. Here are a list of uses put together by Charles Butler. Outer Works Inner Works RED:ENERGY RED:COURAGE ORANGE:GENEROSITY ORANGE:PLENTY YELLOW:THE UNKNOWN YELLOW:CENTERING GREEN:PROSPERITY GREEN:HEALING BLUE:LOVE BLUE:EMOTIONS PURPLE:INSPIRATION PURPLE:SPIRIT PINK:REVELATION PINK:JOY BURGUNDY:PASSION BURGUNDY:REKINDLING BLACK:COMFORT BLACK:AUTHORITY WHITE:VISION WHITE:PROTECTION 983 GREEK FIRE INITIATION Cast of Characters Tiresias:____________ Hephaestus:____________ Artemis:____________ Apollo:____________ Hestia:____________ Prometheus:____________ Seeker:____________ Incastingthecircle,whencalling theQuartersyouare free to use your own words but we ask that you use Greek styling and personify with the names of the four Greek winds: North: Boreus East: Eurus South: Notus West: Zephyrus Tiresiasseatednorthofaltarrises,goesaroundtoface altar, and invokes God and Goddess in a Greek style using these two triumverates: GOD Zeus: Strength Hades: Knowledge Poseidon: Emotion GODDESS Hera: Power Athena: Wisdom Aphrodite: Love He then stepback andsays: "We havebeen calledforth fromthe edges of Time and Space by one who seeks entry to the Halls of Olympus. I am Tiresias, Prophet of Thebes, who, though blind, shall be his guide. Seeker, come forth!" 984 Seeker approaches circle at north-east point of Circle. Tiresias: "Who seeks entry to Olympus?" Seeker: "I, __________. Tiresias: "Beforeyou enter,gaze uponone whosought whatwas not rightfully his. Do you still desire entry?" Seeker replies. Tiresias: (If no,he leaves and circleis closed. Ifyes): "Then enter and ask passage of the Guardians of the Gods." Seeker enters and they travel 1 1/8 to North. Tiresias: "Hail, MightyHephaestus, Craftsman of the Gods. With me is one who seeks entry to Olympus." Hephaestus: "How are you known, Seeker?" Seeker: "I am called __________." Hephaestus:"By whatright seekyoupassage throughthe North?" Seeker: "I haveendured ayear of thepath ofEarth andlearned of my own mortality." Hephaestus: "Pass with the Blessings of the Earth." They travel around 1 1/4 to East. Tiresias: "Hail,Vigilant Artemis,Virgin Goddess. Withme is one who seeks entry to Olympus." Artemis: "How are you known, Seeker?" Seeker: "I am called __________." Artemis: "By what right seek you passage through the East?" Seeker: "I have endured a year of the path of Airand have learned the need for focus of will." Artemis: "Pass with the Blessings of the Air." They travel around 1 1/4 to South. Tiresias: "Hail, Bright Apollo, Lordof the Sun. With me is one who seeks entry to Olympus." Apollo: "How are you known, Seeker?" Seeker: "I am called __________." Apollo: "By what right seek you passage through the South?" Seeker has no answer. Apollo: "Youhave not yetearned theright topass through the South. To win this right, you must seek Fire from he who first gave it to Mankind, Prometheus. Tiresias, guard him upon his path of Fire that he learn what he needs to face the Titan." They travel around 1 1/2 to North. Tiresias: "Icome with __________, whonow seeks Prometheus that he may gain the right to Fire. What can you teach him that will ease his path?" 985 Hephaestus: "Knowthat Iam Hephaestus,Craftsman andSmith of the Gods. In my labors, I use Fire as a purifying agent, seperating the metal from the stone, and for the actual forging of my Art. But remember that creativity requires forethought. Daedalus w a s a Master of my Craft, yet rarely considered t h e implications of his creations. He created the Labyrinth of Minos, who then imprisoned him within i t s intricacies. He crafted wing that he and his s o n might escape, yet in their flight Icarus died. Always consider the consequences of the which you create." They travel 1 1/4 around to East. Tiresias: "I come with __________,who now seeks Prometheus that he may gain the right to Fire. What can you teach him that will ease his path?" Artemis: "Knowthat I amArtemis, VirginHuntress. Through my will, no man has ever known me. Yet will must be tempered by intellegence. Remember Otus and Ephialtes, twin giants who were arrogant enough to think themselves better than the Gods. They continued their ill-wrought plans, even after Poseidon warned them. Through supposed desire, they chose to pursue me. They seperated in pursuit of what they saw as a white hind, and, with simultaneous throws, slew each other. Thus blind will caused the death of all they truly loved." They travel 1 1/4 around to the South Tiresias: "Icome with __________, whonow seeks Prometheus that he may gain the right to Fire. What can you teach him that will ease his path?" Apollo: "Know thatI am Apollo, Godof the Sun andKeeper of Knowledge. Knowledge of Fire has allowed Man to forge a civilization. But seeking to advance without can lead to catastrophe. Witness Phaethon, who attempted to drive the Sun Chariot without proper knowledge, nearly causing the incineration of the Earth. Action without knowledge will often lead to ruin." They travel around 1 1/4 to the West. Tiresias: "I come with__________, who now seeks Prometheus that he may gain the right to Fire. What can you teach him that will ease his path?" Hestia: "Know that I amHestia, Goddess of Hearthand Home. The warm glow of emotion in balance is vital for proper growth and life. But when emotions are allowed to rule above all else, tragedy is soon to follow. Consider Paris, who upon seeing Helen, bowed to an all-consuming desire for her, kidnapping her without thought of the consequences. Thus began the Trojan War. Do not bury your emotions, but neither should you elevate them to the level of Ruler. 986 Theytravel 1 3/4around to theSouth. Tiresiasalone goes to altar and faces Seeker. Tiresias: "Seeker,are youprepared toface Prometheushimself with your request?" Seeker: "I am." Tiresias: "Then come forward and call him forth." Seeker goes to altar facing North. Seeker: "From the depths of Time, I call you forth. Arise Prometheus, Lightbringer." Fromwithinthe membersin theCircle,Prometheus risesand goes to north side of altar. Prometheus: "I am Prometheus. Who summons me here?" Seeker: "I am __________." Prometheus: "Why haveyou brought me herefrom the depths of Time?" Seeker: "I seek the Gift of Fire." Prometheus: "And by what right do you ask it? Seeker: "By the right of perfect love and perfect trust." Prometheus: "Thenknow thatyou are wellmet. I willgrant you Fire and its path for a year and a day that you might learn its lessons. The most important lesson it can teach you is the need for thought before action of any kind. You must always consider the consequences of all that you do or say. At the end of your time on this path, you will be judged on your fitness to continue your search." Prometheus gives Seeker a token of Fire. Prometheus: "With my service done, I bid you farewell." Prometheus leaves, blending into Circle. Tiresias: "Welldone, mostnoble Seeker.Pleasejoin usfor the remainder of our revels." Seekeris given seatin Circle. Tiresias faces frontof altar and dismisses Deities using Greek styling and the following names: GOD Zeus, Hades, and Poseidon GODDESS Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite Each Quarter dismisses its element in a Greek style and dismisses the appropriate Wind: NORTH: Boreas EAST: Eurus SOUTH: Notus WEST: Zephyrus Tiresias: "Our workis completed fornow. Letus rejoice and enjoy this company, remembering that though we may go our seperate ways, we are alway united as one. Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again!" GREEK FIRE INITIATION 987 Seeker's Copy Seeker approachescircle atnorth-east pointof Circle when summoned. Seeker: "I, __________. Seeker replies to question. Seeker enters and they travel 1 1/8 to North. Seeker: "I am called __________." Seeker: "I haveendured ayear of thepath ofEarth andlearned of my own mortality." They travel around 1 1/4 to East. Seeker: "I am called __________." Seeker: "I have endured a year of the pathof Air and have learned the need for focus of will." They travel around 1 1/4 to South. Seeker: "I am called __________." Seeker has no answer. They travel around 1 1/2 to North. They travel 1 1/4 around to East. They travel 1 1/4 around to the South They travel around 1 1/4 to the West. They travel 13/4 aroundto theSouth. Tiresiasalone goesto altar and faces Seeker. Seeker: "I am." Seeker goes to altar facing North. Seeker: "From the depths ofTime, I call you forth. Arise Prometheus, Lightbringer." Seeker: "I am __________." Seeker: "I seek the Gift of Fire." Seeker: "By the right of perfect love and perfect trust." Seeker is given seat in Circle. 988 SCENTS AND OILS It has long been one of man's beliefs that different scents effect us on many levels including the spiritual One of the main reasons for perfumes and colognes is this belief. Here is a brief list of properties distributed by Connections Candles, a company the makes candles and sells them at metaphysical gatherings. APPLE: Peace of mind, relaxation, love, wisdom. BAYBERRY: Luck to the home, money to the pocket. BURGAMOT: Protection from harm. CEDAR: Instills confidence, protection from misery and misfortune. CINNAMON: raise and enhance spiritual vibrations, stimulate clairvoyance, aids focus and concentration, good for personal protection. CITRONELLA: Attracts friends and customers, protection from insects. CLOVE: Strengthens memory, protects from hostile negative forces. EUCALYPTUS: Promotes healing of any hurt, depression or illness. Especially good for colds or flu. FRANKENCENSE: Frees one of obsessions and destructive habits, brings spiritual blessings, protects, exorcises, purifies. HELIOTROPE: Increases clairvoyance, assists meditation, protects from physical harm. HONEYSUCKLE: Aids in understanding non-physical realities, sharpens intuition, brings prosperity. JASMINE: Psychic protection, cleanses the aura, stimulates - creativity and originality, attracts spiritual love. LAVENDER: Frees from emotional stress, brings inner calm and peace, gives increased awareness, brings stability and permanance, good for headaches. LEMON: Evokes protective spirits. LILAC: Helps recall past lives, draws good spirits, helps decision making, improves memory. 989 MUSK: Instills self assurance, confidence and strength, heightens passions. MYRRH: Guards against evil, brings peace, assists in understanding personal sorrow. ORANGE: Brings harmony, raises power. PINE: Cleanses, ends useless recriminations. ROSE: Unconditional love, peace, harmony, tranquility. SAGE: Powerful clearing and cleansing, removes negative energy. SANDALWOOD: Stimulates clairvoyance, aids in seeing past lives, healing, clearing, protection, calms the mind. SWEETGRASS: Invokes spiritual blessings, aids transformation. VANILLA: Vitalizes energy, brings happy occasions to the premises, draws good fortune. 990 LANDMARKS OF THE CRAFT A landmark is a prominent feature used to mark the boundaries of real estate. Therefore, these landmarks of the Craft ar prominent features of the American Rite, or Druidic Craft of the Wise. Just as departing from the landmarks in real estate signifies that one has departed from that piece of land, so does departure from the landmarks of our Craft signify such a person or organization has departed from the correct defines of the Craft. Other branches of the Craft sometimes call this their "Law". THE LANDMARKS The landmarks were given to man by The Great God, Pan, In the dim, dark ages of the past For the rule and regulation of the wise, To advise and help them in their troubles And relations, one with the other, That all might work and love together. They are the Bill of Rights of each member, And the code of operation of the Coven. And are to be honored by all Or else they become meaningless and of little use, And departure therefrom by any person or Coven Shall be a departure from the rest of the Covens Which constitute the American Rite. And they shall be disfellowshipped, they from the rest of us, And no further communication shall be established Concerning things of the Craft With either He or They until They shall return to the fold of the Craft In love and cooperation. For the Gods love the Wise, the Brethren of the Way, And so should we return that love. But this can only be done and made manifest by love expressed In deeds for the Brethren of the Craft, Not in pride, but in cooperation and sincerity. THE FELLOWS OF THE CRAFT Any person, be male or female, who is of good mind And free to decide for himself in good faith, Who shall learn of the Craft and its Tenets, And shall desire to follow the Way, Shall be permitted to do so, And none may say him "Nay". And the Gods will love him and look after him, And they shall bless him on all things, And his needs shall always be satisfied, As he shall show forth love and affection For all the brethren and sisters of the Craft, And he shall obey the Admonishments Of the Craft as to secrecy and correct living. 991 THE FELLOWS OF THE CRAFT (continued) And when he shall desire to join the Craft, And to follow the Way to Perfection, He shall make his desires known to any member Of the Priesthood. And they shall observe his readiness and sincerity, And shall then administer the rites of Secrecy, which is sacredness and brotherhood. But a Priest shall accept the Sister, And a Priestess the Brother, As an eternal reminder of The duality of the Universe. And a new name and secret mark Shall be given each new fellow. By this name, and under this mark, Shall they be known among the members Of the Craft, in love and harmony, And their old name and identity shall not be known Even among the members of their own Coven, And none shall inquire for his name or his house And he shall inquire these of none. But the Gods have decreed, that in joining the Rite, Free Will and independence shall not be in jeopardy. And he shall have the right to follow the Way. Walking alone if he will it that way, Or with a Coven of living brethren If he so shall choose; And he shall have the right To withdraw from any coven at any time Without the need to say why, If he shall so choose. And this either for the purpose of joining another Or to become solitary for his own reasons, And there will be none to censure; And he shall have the right to remain In a certain Coven, and none shall say him "Nay", Or to attempt to force him to leave and depart; Except that should he lose harmony with them Then they may so decide And he shall depart. But no man shall have the right To speak for the Craft, And leaving one Coven does not mean Leaving the Craft, or Leaving the Way And each is free, then, or at any time later, To remain solitary Or to seek admission to another Coven. 992 THE FELLOWS OF THE CRAFT (continued) But let him and each other fellow of the Craft Keep a book, and this shall be of the colors of the Craft, That it may be readily recognized, And here he shall keep all the Laws and Landmarks, And the tenets of the Craft, That he might not forget, And if he do forget, that his mind might be Renewed. And in this book, all things shall be the mark Of his own hand, and in ink, That it shall be long lived. Let each of the brothers and sisters Copy what they will from the book, Providing that they are of sufficient worthiness, To receive it, and are of sufficient rank, Or that the writings are of sufficient nature As pertain to their own rank. Never suffer this book out of hand or possession, And never borrow the writings of another To keep, but merely to copy. And each shall guard and keep these writings, As his most sacred possession And destroy them when danger threatens. However, should one be of sufficient power, To remember his past as a wise man, This book and other Craft artifacts, May be buried in a stone box Prepared for them from time to time, And this in view of immediate death, And the desire to save them for a future life. Otherwise, on notice of impending death, This book should be destroyed by fire, As well as other things of the Craft, Which one may posses. But the wise man will have nothing around Which has only a Craft use or meaning, But only things which can be used in daily affairs. If there is no reason to own a sword, Then do not own one; The white wand is just as powerful, And less distinctive in the minds of the infidels. If a white wand is too distinctive, Then any old wand will do for the purpose Of the ceremonies. 993 THE FELLOWS OF THE CRAFT (continued) Have no names written and signs drawn On anything permanently, When necessary these can be written In charcoal or chalk And erased immediately without the telling of tales. Let the knife have the shape of, And be stored with the kitchen knives; Let the cord be seen around the house, And be used for a vulgar purpose, In order to fool the infidels. Never boast, never threaten, never brag Of your powers; not even to the Craft, Above all, never harbor ill thoughts toward another For the power may make it happen for harm; And never wish ill to anyone. As it will Occur. If anyone speaks of the Craft, to down it, Remember: the Craft needs no defense, For it has the Father and All things will be as He wishes In the end. THE COVEN And it shall be that any Fellow of the Craft, Finding himself in a place where he knows of no Coven, Or other Fellow of the Craft Shall have the right, nay, even the duty, To seek out such a Coven, Or other Fellow of the Craft Without censure. Provided that he shall not reveal secrets to jeopardize His former Coven or the members of it, Or the Craft itself. And two or three Fellows shall have the right To meet and discuss subjects of Craft interest, And to help each other along On the Way to Perfection, Except that Craft ceremonies Must be done by the Priesthood. Any five fellows who shall desire To form a Coven may do so, And they shall apply for a charter To any High Priest or Priestess, And they shall then select and choose A man and a woman to lead them. And their elected leaders shall be ordained by their High Priest, And they shall choose two more, A woman to be the deputy; to learn to be a priestess, And a Scribe for their Coven. 994 THE COVEN (continued) But these shall not be ordained to the Priesthood, Unless also qualified for another reason. And this Coven shall belong to the High Priest, And shall be answerable to him in all their doings, Because they did owe their Priesthood to him, And he shall act at all times in their interest As their Spiritual Father in the Craft So that he may lead them as they walk The way to perfection. But the newly appointed Priesthood, Should it be lacking in the knowledge and wisdom needed, For the positions to which they have been set apart Then it shall be his responsibility as their High Priest, To lead and instruct them, Or cause it to be done by another. But should the new Coven refuse to follow The teachings and instructions of their Spiritual Father, Then he may, at his discretion and Judgement, Recall their charter, and their right to work as a Coven. For that which one can give he may also retrieve, And they shall not again meet, Unless they can find another High Priest, Who will assume responsibility over them. It is the bounden duty of the High Priest to preside, For all things must be presided over by the High Priesthood; And should any Coven desire to change, Their allegiance from one High Priest to another, For any reason, even the loss of harmony, Or if, in their considered opinion, their Spiritual Father Is no longer spiritual, or serving the Father Then they shall be reordained in the Priesthood By the New High Priest, and this shall then Have superceded the original ordinations, And there shall be for them A new Spiritual Father. And if any Priest or Priestess, or other member of the Priesthood, Find themselves in a place wherein there is no Coven for them to lead, Then it is their bounden duly to try to the extent of their Power To find Fellows of the Craft And organize them into a Coven. And should they find that there are no other Fellows of the Craft, In that place, but there are some of the same good bend of mind, It is then their duty to teach them by word and deed, Until there be sufficient to form a Coven, And this shall be done under the supervision, And with the knowledge of their High Priest, Through which they received their ordination And their Powers. 995 THE COVEN (continued) And they shall obligate, teach and initiate all the members of their Coven, And they shall be theirs and they shall be to them As elder brothers and sisters, And shall care for them in all their affairs, And not just at meetings, For it is in this that the Craft differs From all man-made institutions. Should any member be absent, and love of the Priestess is such That she shall continue to contact them in any manner And by any method possible, To tender them her loving care At all times of sickness or stress. And should any member move to a far city The Priestess will continue to care for them In love, by whatever method is available, Until such time as they shall, Of their own free will, Obligate themselves to another Priestess. And the Priestess shall at all times remember That she is the direct representative of the Goddess to her Coven, And the Priest is the direct representative of The unknown God, the Father, And both must act as such at all times. Yet the Priestess shall have whomever she shall choose As her Priest, be he of that rank, or qualified to be, Or else another Fellow, who shall be called her Magister. And she must remember at all times that the man provides the power, For the woman to direct, and so it is, That the Priest resigns all his power over to her, Yet it is not his power, nor hers to keep, It is the power of God to use in the performance Of the Work. The Power of God is only lent to be used, Wisely and Justly. Both the members of the Priesthood shall remember their Spiritual Father, At all times with gratitude, love, veneration and cooperation, keeping constantly in contact, and acting with him in utmost harmony, For they must always remember that the power And wisdom which they use, Comes to them through him. In the days of old, ere the coming of Christendom, The Craft was free and open in its ceremonies, And entire states and nations worshipped the Gods Freely and without restraint; 996 THE COVEN (continued) But in these unhappy days, we must remain secret, And hold our rites and ceremonies in secret, And there are those who will talk, even without torture, Which loosens any tongue. Then let it be ordained, heeded and supported by all That no Coven shall know wherein The next Coven shall abide, or who its members be, Except only the Priestess, Magister and Deputy, And even they shall not remember Except for good and sufficient reason. But, and if only, it should be safe, may the covens meet In some safe place for festivals, and while there, None may say whence they came, nor give their true names, Or tell of where or when their meetings are, and No secret things shall be spoken of At these festivals for fear of Cowans and Eavesdroppers. Let each Priestess govern her own Coven in justice and love, Ever heeding the advice and instructions of her High Priest. She will ever heed the complaints of the brethren And strive to settle all differences between them with love. But there are those who, in pride, will ever strive To force their will upon others But these are not necessarily evil And will think that they do rightly. Oft they have good ideas and such ideas Should be discussed in council with their brethren. But if they will not agree with their brethren, Or if they say "I will not work under this Priestess", Then they shall have the right to withdraw from that Coven, And work Solitary. Or if five or more of them shall withdraw, They shall have the right To form another Coven under another Priestess. Even as it shall be the right of any five or more persons of a Coven To withdraw, and form a new Coven, for any reason whatever, But they shall then utterly avoid the old Coven In all things, as it shall then have ceased to exist for them. 997 THE BOOK OF SHADOWS Let every Coven of whatever rank Keep a record in a book of black and silver, And it shall contain, first, the Landmarks and Tenets, Then a collection of Wisdom of the Craft, The Rites and Ceremonies of the Coven As well as the History of the Coven, And its charter empowering it to work. And a record of every meeting shall be written therein, Together with a record of the doings of any member thereof With the other side, or the Father, or Any other thing which is for the teaching of all, Even unto the listing of herbs and medicines Spells and incantations and Rites Which contain power for the use of man. This book shall be kept by the Scribe, And it shall be kept and approved by the Priesthood And also the High Priesthood, when it shall come, But no names or Craft secrets shall be written therein That he Craft should not be betrayed Should the book be taken by force, Or slyness, by the infidels. And when the coven shall disband, It shall be the duty of the High Priesthood To secure this book and make suitable disposition That it might not endanger the Craft Or any brother within it As if the Coven were a person or Fellow And the book were his book, So let it be burned. THE PRIESTHOOD The Mother, The seven Elder Children, and all the worlds, Draw their power from the Father. But the children of the Father are like the sands of the sea, And He has ordained and set apart certain of his older children, To help and assist Him in caring for the younger children, And has given them the Power and the Wisdom to do so, And these children constitute the Priesthood. The Father will bestow this power upon whom he will, and none may say him "Nay" Yet also may the Priesthood choose workers and helpers And shall share their power with them, And this is called ordination. The Power of the Priesthood is that of the Father And it is love unfeigned and sincere, Compassion and gentleness and meekness, Persuasion and long-suffering and kindness, And there is no authority over the free will of men Inherent in the Priesthood, Nor to be assumed by the members of it. 998 THE PRIESTHOOD (continued) And the Power of the Priesthood is the Power of God, And the Power of God can never be wielded by an ungodly man, Nor an evil man; nor the love of God by an unloving man; And when the man becomes evil, the Power of God is withdrawn from him. Nor can a member of the Priesthood be inactive, For inactivity without cause is lack of love for the Father, And this man's priesthood shall depart from him At the end of a year and a day, For it is truth eternal, That the thing which is unused will be taken away. So if any Fellow of the Craft shall desire the Priesthood, First let him learn to be a leader of men, For a Priest with no following is no Priest, And his Priesthood is in vain. So therefore let the Fellow who would be a Priest First learn the knowledge and wisdom he will need in the new appointment, Then let him learn to lead men, and When he shall either have been selected As leader for his Coven, Or when he shall have gathered up a Coven of his own, Then let him apply for ordination. And he shall apply to a High Priest, for it is written That only the higher can ordain the lesser, That there shall be an unbroken line Of power and authority extending Back through the line of ordination, To the Father Himself. And no man can ordain his peers, For the Lord's House is not a house of confusion, So let not the line be broken For it is the cable tow by which Men are drawn from the lower Up to the greater;-- An impossibility without it. And each must work within their line of ordination In perfect love and perfect trust, With perfect harmony in all things, But should they find that they fall out of harmony With their line of ordination, Then let him seek another, to be ordained of him To be their new spiritual Father. Let the Priesthood be a leadership of fact; not of fancy, For those who have no following to lead, Why are they in the Priesthood? 999 THE PRIESTHOOD (continued) And so it is that they who lose or give away their following, Or they who through inactivity have lost their power, Or they who are not in harmony and love with their Spiritual Father; Shall be retired from a rank to which entitled Other than by leadership of men. But this can only be done by he who ordained them, For only those who give can take away, Yet each High Priest is responsible that this is done. Should any Fellow fain the Priesthood, and use it wisely and well, The Gods have decreed that those who serve them Shall prosper and grow in this life, And shall gain eternal perfection To be freed from the Wheel of Life, And to become like unto the angels In that they should be perfect. For perfection is to be gained by love, And there is no greater love than to Lay down one's life for his brethren In their service and for their sake, And the Father will reward them for Their labor of love, because He is not unjust. FINIS 1000 A CULT-HUNTER LOOKS AT CHRISTIANITY 1- When you enter some Catholic churches, you are confronted by a graphic representation ofJesus, nailed to a cross, bleeding, suffering, and then you are told that He went to this death of His own free will! You read about Saints that whipped themselves; that wore hair shirts to abuse their bodies. You even see, in this modern age, the Penitentes ofMexico and New Mexicowho continue this practice, evengoing so far as to crucify themselves, men and women! People who walk to a "holy" shrine on their knees, doing possible permanent damage to themselves, are lauded for having performed a "holy" act! Children are beaten, starved, tortured and otherwise seriously harmed by members of this cult following the Biblical admonition "Speare the rod and spoil the child." There are also innumerable cases of the denial of blood transfusions, denial of public education, and denial of * any * modern medical treatment, all in the name of this cult's beliefs. Does Christianity preach a form of sado-masochism? If it does, it is a dangerous cult indeed! 2- This ritual of "Holy Communion" or the "Lord's Supper" has some overtones that bother any right-thinking person. After all, the worshippers are told that they are eating the "Body and Blood of our Saviour, Jesus Christ!" Can it be very far from * ritual * cannibalism to * real * cannibalism? This cult seems more and more dangerous! 3- The pre-occupation of some sects of Christianity with "demons" and "devils" and "evil spirits"that, in their minds, seem toinhabit the whole Universe, ready at the slightest opportunity to "possess" the bodies and minds of humans, reeks of Diabolism! The more extreme sects even seem to believe that this "Devil" is some sort of anti-God that has * all * power over the world. Can it be a very great step from being so preoccupied with devils to the actual worship of them? One should worry about this! 4- One sect of Christianity, the Roman Catholic Church, actually LOCKS UP young girls (and older women) and forbids them contact with the world, forbids them marriage, and tells them it is a "sin" to think of men in a sexual manner, and that they will "burnin 'hell' " if they do so. Such single-sex, enforced groupings of people (similar to secular prisons) are always hotbeds of deviant behaviour. The same sect forbids marriage to its priests, and thereby perhaps encourages the many, many DOCUMENTED cases of its priests molesting young boys. One of its major past leaders (called "Apostles"), Saul of Tarsus, aka "Saint Paul," was known for his hatred of women, and he seems to be the major theoretician of many of the "Fundamentalist" sects of the cult. Can it be that Christianity actually * encourages * homosexuality, while preaching the opposite? 5- One sect, the "Jehovah's Witnesses," refuses allegiance to their country! They will not salute the flag, nor will they serve in the Armed Forces! The "Social Gospel," a take-from-the-rich propaganda pitch, is preached all over Third World nations, subverting their governments! Can it be that Christianity encourages the "One World" viewpoint of certain radical political groups? 6- The sexual behaviour of its leaders has been well documented, from "Popes" (the leader of the Roman Catholic sect) to Aimee Semple Macpherson, to Jimmy Swaggert. One wonders about such leaders being placed in positions of command over our young people. How many innocents have been defiled by such persons? One wonders!