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          The Craft  (Witchcraft -  NOT to  be confused with  Satanism.
A true
          Witch has  nothing  to  do  with this,  even  though  there  are
          Satanists  who (unright-fully)  call themselves  "Witch".) conta
ins  a
          large number  of groups with bonds  to each other, for  the most
          which  are looser than those you will find between Christian chu
          Each has it's  own traditions,  it's own beliefs,  it's own  pan
          etc.   So  just WHAT is  it that,  overall, a  Witch believes  i
n? The
          American Council  of Witches was formed to  determine what it wa
s that
          all   Witches  have in common,  belief-wise.   In the  early 197
0's, a
          paper  was  released with  their findings,  and  gives a  good o
          picture of it.  The following is the text of that paper.



          1.   The first principle is that  of love, and it is expressed i
n  the
                    "DO AS YOU WILL, SO LONG AS YOU HARM NONE"
                    a)love is notemotional in it'sessence, but isan attrib
ute of
                  the individual as expressed in relation to other beings;

               b) harming others can be by thought, word, or deed;
               c> it is to be understood the "none" includes oneself;
                    d) theharm which isto be regardedas unethical isgratui
                harm; war, in general, is gratuitous harm, although it is

                ethical to defend oneself and one's liberty when threatene
d by
          real and present danger, such as defense against invasion.

          2.    The Witch must  recognize and harmonize  with the forces
of the
          universe,  in accord  with the  Law of  Polarity: everything  is
          everything has  two poles;  everything has  it's  opposite; for
          action there is a reaction;  all can be categorized as either
          active or reactive in relation to other things.
                    a) Godhead is one  unique and transcendent wholeness,
                          any limitationsor expressions; thus,it is beyond
              human capacity to understand and identify with this

           principle of Cosmic Oneness, except as It is revealed to
          in terms of It's attributes and operation.
                    b) The most basic and meaningful attribute of the One
               we, as humans, can relate to and understand, is that of

           polarity, of action and reaction; therefore Witches

          recognize the Oneness of the Divinity, but worship and

           relate to the Divine as the archetypal polarity of God

           and Goddess, the All-Father and the Great Mother of the

           universe.  The Beings are as near as we can approach to

           the One within our human limitations of understanding and

          expression, though it is possible to experience the

          divine Oneness through the practices of the Mysteries.
                    c) Harmony does not  consist of the pretty and the nic
e, but
                          the balanced, dynamic,poised co-operation and


                         Last amended June 11, 1989  --  Page NEXTRECORD


          3.   The Witch must recognize, and operate within the framework
of the
               Law  of Cause  and Effect;  every action  has it's  reactio
n, and
          every effect has it's cause.   All things occur according to thi
s law;
          nothing in the universe can occur outside this law, though  we m
ay not
          always appreciate the relation between a given effect  and it's
          Subsidiary to this is the Law of Three, which     states that wh
          goes forth must return threefold, whether of      good or ill; f
or our
          actions affect more than people generally    realize,      and
          resulting reactions are also part of the     harvest.

          4.   As  Above, So Below.  That which exists  in the Macrocosm e
          on a  smaller scale and  to a  lesser degree, in  the Microcosm.
          powers of  the universe  exist also in  the human,  though in  g
          instance they lie dormant.  The powers and abilities can be
          awakened and used if the proper techniques are practiced, and
          is why initiates of the Mysteries are sworn to guard the    secr
          from the unworthy:  Much harm can be done by those who      have
          without responsibility, both to others and to     themselves acc
          to the Laws of Cause and Effect and of  Threefold Return.
                    a) Since our philosophy teaches that the universe is t
                       physical manifestation of the Divine, there can be

                  nothing in the universe which does not partake of the

           nature of the Divine; hence, the powers and attributes of

          the Divine exist also in the manifest, though to much

          smaller degree.
                    b) These powers can be awakened through the various

                          techniques of theMysteries, and,although they ar
          capable of small effects in and of themselves, it is

          possible to use them in order to draw upon the forces of

          the universe.  Thus humanity can be the wielders of the

           power of the Gods, a channel for Godhead to act within

           It's own manifestation.  This, then, is further reason

           for the oath of secrecy.
                    c) Since the universe is the body of the One, possessi
ng the
                       same attributes as the One, it's Laws must be the

                  principles through and by which the One operates.  By

           reasoning from the known to the unknown, one can learn of

          the Divine, and thus of oneself.  Thus the Craft is a

          natural religion, seeing in Nature the expression and

          revelation of Divinity.

          5.   We know that everything in the universe is in movement or
          vibration and is a function of that vibration.  Everything  vibr
          all things rise and fall in a tidal system that   reflects  the
          inherent in the universe and also in the     atom.   Matter and
          are but two poles of one continuous     phenomenon.     Therefor
e  the
          Witch celebrates, harmonizes with, and  makes  use of the tides
of the
          universe and of life as expressed  through  the  cycle of  the s
          and the motion of the solar   system.    These ritual  observanc
es are
          the eight great Festivals     of the Year, referred to as the Wh
eel of
          the Year.  Further, the  Witch works with the  forces and tides
of the
          Moon, for this body      is the mediator of  much energy to our
          Earth and thus to   ourselves.

                         Last amended June 11, 1989  --  Page NEXTRECORD


          6.   Nothing is dead matter in the universe.  All things exist,
          therefore all things live, though perhaps in a different manner
          that which we are used to calling life.  In view of this,   the
          knows that there is no true death, only change from one     cond
          to another.  The universe is the body of Godhead, and  therefore
          possesses one transcendent consciousness; all things   partake
of the
          consciousness, in varying levels of     trance/awareness.
                    a) Because of this principle, all things are sacred to
                       Witch, for all partake of the one Life.
                    b) Therefore the Witch is a natural ecologist, for Nat
ure is
                       part of us as we are a part of Nature.

          7.   Astrology can be useful  in marking and interpreting the fl
ow and
               ebb of  the tides of our solar system, and  thus of making
use of
          those tides; astrology should not be debased into mere

          8.   Throughout the development of the human race,  civilization
s have
               seen and worshipped many  and various attributes of the  Di
          These universal forces have been clothed in forms which were
          expressive to the worshipper of the attribute of the Godhead
          they expressed.  Use of these symbolic representations of   t
h   e
          natural and divine forces of the universe, or god forms, is a
          potent method for contacting and utilizing the forces they  repr
          Thus the Gods are both natural and truly divine, and   man-made
          that the forms with which they are clothed are    products
          humanity's striving to know the Godhead.
                    a)  In keeping with the Law of Polarity, these god-for
ms are
                          brought into harmony by the one great Law whichs
                          All Gods are oneGod.  All Goddesses areone Godde
              There is one Initiator.  This law is an expression of our

          understanding that all of the forces of the universe, by

          whatever ethnic god-form is chosen to clothe and relate

           to whichever force, can be resolved into the fundamental

          polarity of the Godhead, the Great Mother and the


                    b) It is the use of differing god forms, of differing
                          sources or periods,which is the basis ofmany of
                                  differencesbetween thevariousTraditions

                                EachTraditionuses theforms,andthusthenames
                              to thatTradition bestexpress and awakenan

                            understandingofthe forcerepresented,accordingt
o the
                  areas of emphasis of the Tradition.
                    c) Because we know that differing names or representat
                                forces,werequire ourmemberstoswearthat the
                              nevermockthenames bywhichanotherhonors theDi
                            eventhough thosenames bedifferentfrom andseemi
                          lessexpressive thanthe namesand godforms usedby
                        Tradition(for tothe membersof anotherTradition, us
                        it's names, oursmay easily seemequally less


                         Last amended June 11, 1989  --  Page NEXTRECORD


          9.   A Witch refuses to allow her/himself to be corrupted by the
               guilt neuroses which have been foisted on humanity in the n
ame of
               the Divine,  thus freeing the self  of the slavery of  the
          The Witch expresses responsibility for her/his actions, and
          accepts the consequences of  them; guilt is rejected as  inhibit
ing to
          one's self-actualization, and replaced by the efforts of the
          to obey the teachings of harmlessness, responsibility for   t
 h    e
          consequences of one's actions, and the goal of actualizing  the
          powers of the individual.
                    a) We refuse to believe that a human being is born inn
                                sinful,and recognizetheconcepts ofsinandgu
                              aretremendouslyinhibitingto thehumanpotentia
                            consequencesof theLawof CauseandEffect,called
                            bysome, arenot punishment,but therecurrences o
                          situations andtheir effectsbecause theindividual
                        notgained the Wisdomneeded tohandle or avoidsuch

                    b) There is no heaven except that which we ourselves m
ake of
                                bypunishmentorreward,but bylifeandtheconti
                    evolution of the human potential.
                    c) One cannot damn the divine in oneself; one can, how
                                cutoneselfofffromitthroughthe rejectionofw
                              anda refusaltostrive forself-realization. Th
                   cutting off does not lead to personal suffering
                                    in"hell", forthereisnoSelftosufferifth
                                  one'sown divinityhasbeensevered;whatrema
                    devoid of it's ensouling Spark of the Divine Fire.

          10.   We  know of the  existence of  the life-force  which ensou
ls all
          living things, that is, all that exists.  We know that a spark o
f this
          Divine Fire is within each and every thing that exists, and
          it does not die; only the form of it's existence changes.   We
          that this spark of the life-force returns to      manifestation
          and again in order to fully realize and      actualize it's pote
          evolving finally to the peak and   essence of existence which  i
s pure
          being.  In this process of    reincarnation each form  returns i
n  the
          same type of form, though     it's  ever-increasing actualizatio
n  may
          lead to higher levels of      existence of that form.   Man retu
rns as
          man, cat as feline,      mineral  as  mineral,   each  class  of
          evolving as the individual    forms of that class evolve.

          11.   This  process of  evolution through  successive incarnatio
ns  in
          manifest form works through the utilizations of wisdom gained,
 t h e
          essence of the life-experience.  This essence of experience,
 o   r
          Wisdom, is an attribute of the spark of life itself, one and
          inseparable (see 9a).

                         Last amended June 11, 1989  --  Page NEXTRECORD


          12.  We must care for the body,  for it is the vehicle of the sp
ark of
               life, the form by which we attain.  Thus we must heal the b
ody of
               it's ills and keep it a tuned and perfected tool; so must w
e heal
               others  (both physically  and psychologically)  as far  as
it  is
          within our power to do so.  However, we cannot interfere with th
e life
          of another, even to heal, except at their request or with   t h
e i r
          express permission; unless such non-interference would be   inhi
          to our own, ethical existence and development -- and
               even then the responsibilities and consequences must be
          understood and accepted.  This, then, is one of the important
          reasons for the communal life the Witches under the guidance of
 t h e
          Priesthood:  That the group may be guided by wisdom and
          experience, with the aid and support of one's peers; and that
          actions may be guided by the influence of the ethical life  of
          group as a whole.

          13.  Harmony with, and utilization of, the great natural forces
of the
               universe is called magick.  By magick we speak, not of the
          supernatural, but of the superbly natural, but whose laws and
          applications are not as yet recognized by the scientific
          establishment.  The Witch must strive to recognize these forces,
          their laws, attune her/himself to them, and make use of     them
.  The
          Witch must also be aware that power corrupts when
                    used_only_ for thegains of theself, and thereforemust
               to serve humanity:  Either through the service in the Pries
               or by example and effects of his/her life on others.   The
               must be made in accord with the true nature of the Witch.

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