Wicca Wiccan

by admin on December 6, 2007

Wicca Wiccan

Wicca Wiccan

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Mi altar Wicca – My wiccan altar

For those who practice Wicca, the Wiccan Rede is beautifully humanistic, when was it written?,?

An excerpt from it as follows:
“Where the rippling waters go, cast a stone, the truth to know.
When you have and hold a need, harken not to other’s greed.
With a fool no seasons spend, or be counted as his friend.
Merry meet and merry part, bright the cheeks and warm the heart.
Mind the Threefold Law you should, three times bad and three times good.
When misfortune is enow, wear the blue star on your brow.
True in love you must ever be, lest their love be false to thee.
These words the Wiccan Rede fulfll: An it harm none, do what you will.”

Thank you for such powerfully moving words!!


Peace and Love

Sorry this is going to be very long!!

The combination of Wicca with no harm to others and do what thou wilt made its first known appearance in The Old Laws by Gerald Gardner, 1953. A similar phrase, Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law, appears in Aleister Crowley’s works by 1904, in The Book of the Law (though as used by Crowley it is half of a statement and response, the response being “Love is the Law, love under Will”). The rede in its best known form was used by Doreen Valiente in several writings. In the form of the “eight words” couplet it was first recorded in a speech she delivered in 1964. In 1974 a complete poem entitled “The Wiccan Rede” was published in the neo-Pagan magazine Earth Religion News. It was shortly followed by another, slightly different, version, entitled the “Rede Of The Wiccae,” which was published in Green Egg magazine by Lady Gwen Thompson. She ascribed it to her grandmother Adriana Porter, and claimed that the earlier published text was distorted from “its original form.” The full poem as published by Thompson is as follows:

Rede Of The Wiccae

Being known as the counsel of the Wise Ones:

Bide the Wiccan Laws ye must In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust.
Live an’ let live – Fairly take an’ fairly give.
Cast the Circle thrice about To keep all evil spirits out.
To bind the spell every time – Let the spell be spake in rhyme.
Soft of eye an’ light of touch – Speak little, listen much.
Deosil go by the waxing Moon – Sing and dance the Wiccan rune.
Widdershins go when the Moon doth wane, An’ the Werewolf howls by the dread Wolfsbane.
When the Lady’s Moon is new, Kiss thy hand to Her times two.
When the Moon rides at Her peak Then your heart’s desire seek.
Heed the Northwind’s mighty gale – Lock the door and drop the sail.
When the wind comes from the South, Love will kiss thee on the mouth.
When the wind blows from the East, Expect the new and set the feast.
When the West wind blows o’er thee, Departed spirits restless be.
Nine woods in the Cauldron go – Burn them quick an’ burn them slow.
Elder be ye Lady’s tree – Burn it not or cursed ye’ll be.
When the Wheel begins to turn – Let the Beltane fires burn.
When the Wheel has turned a Yule, Light the Log an’ let Pan rule.
Heed ye flower bush an’ tree – By the Lady Blessèd Be.
Where the rippling waters go Cast a stone an’ truth ye’ll know.
When ye have need, Hearken not to others greed.
With the fool no season spend Or be counted as his friend.
Merry meet an’ merry part – Bright the cheeks an’ warm the heart.
Mind the Threefold Law ye should – Three times bad an’ three times good.
When misfortune is enow, Wear the Blue Star on thy brow.
True in love ever be Unless thy lover’s false to thee.
Eight words ye Wiccan Rede fulfill – An’ it harm none, Do what ye will.

The poem has since been very widely circulated and has appeared in other versions, with additional or variant passages.

Dating the poem

The attribution to Porter has been disputed, since Porter died in 1946, well before Gardner published The Old Laws, and no evidence for Porter’s authorship exists other than Thompson’s word. The language of the poem refers to Wiccan concepts that are not known to have existed in her grandmother’s lifetime. Its attribution to Porter may have formed part of Thompson’s claim to be an hereditary witch. Its precise origin has yet to be determined.

Adrian Bott, in an article written in White Dragon magazine, 2003, argues that its creation can be placed somewhere between 1964 and 1975. Bott bases his argument on the alleged misuse of archaic English in the poem, in particular of “an'” as an abbreviation of “and”, and of “ye” instead of “the”. Bott states that the author of the poem was evidently unaware that this contraction of “and” is not an archaic, but a modern convention. According to Bott, in the “eight words” couplet originally cited by Valiente, “an” is used correctly, in the Middle English sense of “‘in the event that’, or simply ‘if'” (as in the Shakespearan “an hadst thou not come to my bed”) and thus has no apostrophe. In the poem, this has been transformed into an abbreviated “and” and given an apostrophe, with every “and” in the poem’s additional lines then being written “an'” as if to match. Accordingly, Bott concludes that the poem was an attempt to expand Valiente’s couplet into a full Wiccan credo, written by someone who misunderstood the archaic language they attempted to imitate.

However Bott ignores the fact that printing “an'” in the archaic sense with an apostrophe was a publishing convention from the late 19th century and that “an” as a straight abbreviation of “and” is also to be found in Shakespeare.

In contrast to Bott, Robert Mathiesen repeats the objection to “ye”, but argues that most of the archaisms are used correctly. However, he states that they all derive from late 19th century revivalist usages. Based on this fact Mathiesen concludes that early twentieth century authorship of at least part of the poem is probable. He argues that its references to English folklore are consistent with Porter’s family history. His provisional conclusion is that a folkloric form of the poem may have been written by Porter, but that it was supplemented and altered by Thompson to add specifically Wiccan material. Mathiessen also takes the view that the last line was probably a Thompson addition derived from Valiente. According to this account, the 1974 variant of the text, which was published by one of Thompson’s former initiates, may represent one of the earlier drafts. Its publication prompted Thompson to publish what she – falsely – claimed was Porter’s “original” poem.
Blessed Be!

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