Archive for the ‘Circle of the Dark Moon Coven & School of Wicca’ Category


Loki’s Tarot Reading

   Posted by: Scrivener

This is a picture of the tarot reading my GSD (German Shepherd Dog) performed a few days ago. Time doesn’t permit me to relate the full story now but I promise to give a full account later.

The images are from the “Legacy of the Divine Tarot” tarot deck by Ciro Marchetti.

Loki’s Tarot Reading-Click picture for full size


Full Harvest Moon Ritual

   Posted by: Scrivener

Posted below is the ritual we used for our Full Harvest Moon ritual.

Someday, I’ll start writing real articles again, but for now the new job (even though I work from home) is pretty crazy. Following is the ritual:




Happy Mabon

   Posted by: Scrivener

Here as promised–albeit too late to be useful this year–is our Mabon ritual our coven performed last Saturday.


Our recent Blue Moon Ritual

   Posted by: Scrivener Tags: ,

Following this is our recent Blue Moon ritual. We’ll also be posting our upcoming Mabon rituals. Enjoy and Blessed Be everyone.


Below is the text of our Litha ritual we held last Wednesday. Since we are somewhat of a bardic tradition, what better way to celebrate the Summer Solstice than by reenacting something from the Bard himself. We chose a small part of Shakespeare’s play, “A Midsummer’s Night Dream” as the central theme for our Litha ritual. We hope you enjoy the ritual. Additionally, since WP does such a poor job of formatting Word documents, a link to download this ritual in PDF format is included at the end of this post. Now, on to the ritual.


Summer Solstice 2012


June 20, 2012

Circle of the Dark Moon Coven

    Circle of the Dark Moon Coven


You will need these items:



Items that are required for every ritual or working

Altar facing east.


God/Goddess candles

Red (fire) illumination candle

Quarter Candles – Green (North), Yellow (East), Red (South) and Blue (West)

Matches or lighter

Athamé, Sword, or Wand


Chalice for Libation for God and Goddess

Plate for libation for God and Goddess


Specific to the Ritual

  • Faery Dust



  • Usual ritual preparations




HPS:                This is an exercise which shall help us to combine and harmonize our energies. It is simplified version of the middle pillar exercise.


Stand relaxed but upright with you spine straight.


Inhale, then exhale.


Visualize a bright beam of streaming light shining down upon your head


Begin to breathe in slowly to a count of three; hold this breath for a count of three, and then slowly exhale to a count of three. Then hold at the bottom for a count of three and then begin again.


While you are breathing, pull this light energy into your body. Let the light fill you until you are translucent and fairly glowing. Then let the light go and sink into the ground at your feet.


Let’s do this visualization for a total of three breaths.


Now let’s do this again but instead of grounding the energy, let it circulate around your aura in a circle. Visualize this energy coming out of the top of your head and going around the outskirts of your energy field, one stream going to the left and the other stream going to the right. The two streams should reconnect at the feet and enter back into the center of your body.


Let’s do this for a total of three breaths.


Consecration of the Water and Salt


Charge at the Pentacle


(HPS and HP with athames over their hearts and the other hand on the pentacle, bend in silence for a moment. During this time, they silently ask the Lord and Lady for strength and guidance.)


Blessing the Salt


HPS:                (places dish of salt upon the pentacle)


                        I consecrate thee O creature of salt—fruit of the Earth—magickal seasoning for Cerredwen’s cauldron on the hearth.


I cast from thee all hindrance and malignity, so that in my works of magick you may well serve me.


All:                   So mote it be.


(HPS removes the dish of salt from the pentacle and  then places the dish of water upon the pentacle. Then she takes the salt and using her athame drops into the water three measures of salt. She stirs the water three times with the tip of her athame. HPS sets the salt aside.)


Blessing the Water


HPS:                I consecrate thee O creature of water—the Lady’s sacred element—life giving, whether swiftly flowing or softly falling from the firmament.


I cast from thee all hindrance and malignity, so that in my works of magick you may well serve me.


All:                   So mote it be.


Blessing the Air


(HP places the censer containing incense upon the pentacle)


HP:                  I consecrate thee O creature of Air—bringer of summer breezes fair, storm clouds, and faeries on the flight everywhere.


I cast from thee all hindrance and malignity, so that in my works of magick you may well serve me.


All:                   So mote it be.



Blessing the Fire


(HP lights the incense)


HP:                  I consecrate thee O creature of Fire—signifier of the Sun.

Warm and light the way ‘till the spell is cast and our work is done

I cast from thee all hindrance and malignity, so that in my works of magick you may well serve me.


All:                   So mote it be.


(HP sets the censer aside.)


Entry into Sacred Space


Maiden:          (Sweeps the area with besom then smudge with violet-sage.)


(HPS rings bell three times)


HPS:    Attention. Harken for the bell and gather in thy assigned places. Prepare for admission into the circle.


HP:      (After being admitted into sacred space, the covener approaches the HP who then smudges the covener with sage or lavender. When this action is completed, the covener moves to their place about the altar.)


Circle Casting


(by Earth)


(HP and HPS take their athames and trace the sacred circle. If desired, they may leave a doorway in the northeastern quadrant. They walk together with the HP’s hand upon the HPS’ shoulder.)


HPS:                With this magick circle scribed, may the Fae come into this circle tonight.

                        May we merry meet and merry part with blessings bright.


With magick ring and circle of power, I invite the Fairies

Of Air, Fire, Water, and Earth to be here now

And join with us this Midsummer’s Eve.

This Magic Circle is a rampart and Protection against all wickedness that shall both contain and entertain the powers raised within—wherefore do I consecrate thee in the name of The Lord of the Sun and the Lady of the Moon.



Strengthening the Circle


(by Water)


(Witch 1: Sprinkles the salt and water mixture around the circle)


Witch 1:          Rain of water and salt sprinkled upon the ground,

This blessed water sprinkled round and round.

Protect us from wickedness and make our magick sound.



(Witch 1: When their circuit is completed, they replace the water upon the altar.)


(by Air)


(Witch 2: takes the censer and walks about the circle)


Witch 2:          Into the night sky, incense smoke, roil, rise, and writhe,

This smoke takes our intentions to the skies

Sunder us from the mundane like a scythe.


(Witch 2: When their circuit is completed, they replace the censer upon the altar.)


 (by Fire)


(Witch 3: takes a candle and walks about the circle)


Witch 3:          Fire, shine true and bright,

Aid, grant clarity of sight.

Fireflies or is it faeries that light the night.

Mayest the Gods be with us this night.

(Witch 3: When their circuit is completed, they replace the water upon the altar.)


Calling the Quarters


East                 Hail and welcome Fae of the Air, Sylphs and Sprites

Please grant me the breath of life

I invite you to our circle on this Midsummer’s night

To witness and protect our sacred magickal rite.

(Draw the invoking pentagram of Air)
















South              Hail, Fae of light, Salamanders and newts,

Please grant us your drive and creative fire

I invite you to our circle on this Midsummer’s night

To witness and protect our sacred magickal rite.


(Draw the invoking pentagram of Fire


West               Hail, Fae of the waters, Nymphs, Undines, and Merpeople,

Please grant us deep emotions and feelings.

I invite you to our circle on this Midsummer’s night

To witness and protect our sacred magickal rite.


(Draw the invoking pentagram of Water

North              Hail, Fae of the Earth, bright Sidhe (pronounced Shee), dwarves, and gnomes.

Please grant us solidarity, stability, and treasures of great worth.

I invite you to our circle on this Midsummer’s night

To witness and protect our sacred magickal rite.



(Draw the invoking pentagram of Earth)




Drawing down the Moon


Invocation to the Goddess


 (HPS assumes the blessing position with her back to the coven.)


HPS:                O Lady of the Ferny Brae
We call to you to come to us
To  hold us close and hear us say
Asleep and awake, oh how we dream of you
Oh Lady of the fleet white steed
We call you to come to us
To honor you, all wildness freed
Asleep and awake, oh how we dream of you
Oh Lady of the rising mist
We call you to come to us
To hold us near and share your kiss
Asleep and awake, oh how we dream of you


Mist-clad in the light of the moon
Starspun seekers – I search for thee!
Faery light – I ask thy boon
Of branch and thorn and Elder tree!

Wood woven creatures, shadow weavers
River keepers – come to me!
Just beyond reaching, never in keeping
Spirits of Faery – I call unto thee!

Wind-hewn wildness, and dark and brightness
Spiral enchantments – born of the sky,
Cradle me with elven hands,
Abide with me, thy human child!


(HPS lights the Goddess candle.) 


The Charge of the Goddess


(HPS as the Goddess Herself, the HPS turns to face the coven.)


HP:                  Listen to the words of the Great Mother, she who

                        of old was called among men Artemis, Astarte, Athene, Dione, Melusine, Aphrodite, Cerridwen, Dana, Arianhod, Isis, Bride, Flidais, Titania, and by many other names too numerous to name.


HPS:                I am the harmonious tune of the songbird
And the laughter of a gleeful child.
I am the bubbling sound of the running brook
And the scent of the flowers wild.

I am the floating leaf upon the breeze
And the dancing fire in the forest glade.
I am the sweet smell of rains upon the soil
And the rapture of passion when love is made.

I am the germination of see in the Spring
And the ripening of wheat in the sun.
I am the peaceful depth of twilight
That soothes the soul when day is done.

I am found in the twinkling of an aged eye,
And found in the birth of a newborn pup,
Yes, birth and growth and death am I
I am the gracious Earth, on whom you sup.

I am your sister, your mother, the wise one.
I wrap you gently in the warmth of my love.
That which you seek you shall find within
Not without, not below, not above.

Remember always, my children, be reverent.
Be gentle, loving and kind to each other
And hold sacred the Earth and its creatures
For I am the Lady: Creatrix and Mother!

Drawing down the Sun


Invocation to the God


HP:          Oh, playful one, with pipe you prance,

The goat-foot Pan, lord of the dance.

With feral joy in ancient wood

You embue life with mirth and good.


Of seed and beast and plant and tune

We seek your form under this moon.

The woodland king, the lord of trees,

Friend to the moon and stars and breeze.


Hear us, horned one, your priest’s cry,

And bring your song of life nearby.

Give us your fertile and creative force

And help to return us to wildness, our source.


Wild wond’rous Pan, the forest’s sire

Enter this circle and this priest—that is my desire.

Enclose us all, be with us today

Magically join me and our sacred play.


IO Pan! The fertile tide, the Nature Spirit, gather thy nymphs and satyrs and come unto me, great Bacchus!
I am Pan!
From in the forests of Arcadia and across the sea I come unto thee!
I am Pan!
My Spirit enfleshed, within thyself and nature they find me best,
Out of writhsome lust, I manifest, I am Pan! God made flesh!


 (HP lights the God candle.)   

Charge of the God


HP:      Listen to the words of the Horned God,

The Guardian of all things wild and free,

Keeper of the Gates of Death,

Whose Call we all must Heed:


I am the fire within your Heart,

The yearning of your Soul.

I, the Hunter of Knowledge, Seeker of the Holy Quest

I, who stand in the darkness, am He whom you call Death.


I, the Consort and Mate of Her whom we adore,

Beckoned forth to Thee,

To learn the secrets of Death and Peace,

Come thou unto me.


I am corn at harvest and fruit on the trees.

I am He who leads you home.

With Scourge and Flame, Blade and Blood,

These are mine own gifts to thee.


Call unto me in the forest wild and hilltop bare,

And seek me in the Darkest Night.

I, who have been called;

Cernunnos/Lugh, Pan, Hades, Hermes, Puck, Loki, and Osiris Bright.


Speak to thee in thy search, Come to dance and sing;

Come live and love; behold this is worshiping.


I, thy Father. You are my children. On swift night wings,

it is I who lay you at the Mother’s feet;

to be reborn and to return again to seek .


Know me, I am the untamed wind,

the fury of storm.

Seek me with pride and humility,

and passion in your Soul.

Statement of Purpose


HP:      Welcome everyone. Tonight we celebrate the summer solstice—the longest day of the year and the beginning of the shortening of days toward the fall equinox.

The summer solstice sabbat is also known as Litha, or midsummer.

Shakespeare’s play, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” a romantic comedy with thinly veiled pagan references is an excellent corollary to tonight’s celebration. The play is replete with references to subjects the church considered taboo. Some of these references referred to Puck (aka Robin Goodfellow, aka Robin of the Green, aka Robin Hood), to the solstice celebration itself under the guise of St. John’s day, and especially to fairies.

Power Raising

(HPS & HP lead the coven in the Faerie Dance Rune)

Faerie Dance Rune

By Unknown

The forest was asleep at night,
With dew upon each leaf,
Through cloudy mist I saw a sight
Beyond my own belief.

Two fairies danced upon a frond
And shone a lantern’s beam
And as it’s glow fell on a pond
I thought I’d seen a dream.

They wanted me to see the place
Where Lady Moonlight walked,
When she appeared they saw her face,
Excitedly they talked.

They flew into her open hand
With stardust on each wing,
They did a jig upon it and
She smiled as they did sing.

Her beauty I could never glean
Or what their faerie chant meant
But until then I’d never seen
A thing of such enchantment.





Main Working


HPS:                For tonight’s working, we’ll be reading an Act from Shakespeare’s play,

A Midsummer’s Night Dream


A Midsummer’s Night Dream


William Shakespeare



Come, sit thee down upon this flowery bed,
While I thy amiable cheeks do coy,
And stick musk-roses in thy sleek smooth head,
And kiss thy fair large ears, my gentle joy.



Where’s Peaseblossom?






Scratch my head Peaseblossom. Where’s Monsieur Cobweb?






Monsieur Cobweb, good monsieur, get you your
weapons in your hand, and kill me a red-hipped
humble-bee on the top of a thistle; and, good
monsieur, bring me the honey-bag. Do not fret
yourself too much in the action, mounsieur; and,
good mounsieur, have a care the honey-bag break not;
I would be loath to have you overflown with a
honey-bag, signior. Where’s Monsieur Mustardseed?







Give me your neaf, Mounsieur  Mustardseed. Pray you,
leave your courtesy, good mounsieur.



What’s your Will?



Nothing, good mounsieur, but to help Cavalery Cobweb
to scratch. I must to the barber’s, monsieur; for
methinks I am marvellous hairy about the face; and I
am such a tender ass, if my hair do but tickle me,
I must scratch.



What, wilt thou hear some music,
my sweet love?



I have a reasonable good ear in music. Let’s have
the tongs and the bones.



Or say, sweet love, what thou desirest to eat.



Truly, a peck of provender: I could munch your good
dry oats. Methinks I have a great desire to a bottle
of hay: good hay, sweet hay, hath no fellow.



I have a venturous fairy that shall seek
The squirrel’s hoard, and fetch thee new nuts.



I had rather have a handful or two of dried peas.
But, I pray you, let none of your people stir me: I
have an exposition of sleep come upon me.



Sleep thou, and I will wind thee in my arms.
Fairies, begone, and be all ways away.


So doth the woodbine the sweet honeysuckle
Gently entwist; the female ivy so
Enrings the barky fingers of the elm.
O, how I love thee! how I dote on thee!



Welcome, good Robin.
See’st thou this sweet sight?
Her dotage now I do begin to pity:
For, meeting her of late behind the wood,
Seeking sweet favours from this hateful fool,
I did upbraid her and fall out with her;
For she his hairy temples then had rounded
With a coronet of fresh and fragrant flowers;
And that same dew, which sometime on the buds
Was wont to swell like round and orient pearls,
Stood now within the pretty flowerets’ eyes
Like tears that did their own disgrace bewail.
When I had at my pleasure taunted her
And she in mild terms begg’d my patience,
I then did ask of her her changeling child;
Which straight she gave me, and her fairy sent
To bear him to my bower in fairy land.
And now I have the boy, I will undo
This hateful imperfection of her eyes:
And, gentle Puck, take this transformed scalp
From off the head of this Athenian swain;
That, he awaking when the other do,
May all to Athens back again repair
And think no more of this night’s accidents
But as the fierce vexation of a dream.
But first I will release the fairy queen.
Be as thou wast wont to be;
See as thou wast wont to see:
Dian’s bud o’er Cupid’s flower
Hath such force and blessed power.
Now, my Titania; wake you, my sweet queen.



My Oberon! what visions have I seen!
Methought I was enamour’d of an ass.



There lies your love.



How came these things to pass?
O, how mine eyes do loathe his visage now!




Silence awhile. Robin, take off this head.
Titania, music call; and strike more dead
Than common sleep of all these five the sense.



Music, ho! music, such as charmeth sleep!



Now, when thou wakest, with thine
own fool’s eyes peep.



Sound, music! Come, my queen, take hands with me,
And rock the ground whereon these sleepers be.
Now thou and I are new in amity,
And will to-morrow midnight solemnly
Dance in Duke Theseus’ house triumphantly,
And bless it to all fair prosperity:
There shall the pairs of faithful lovers be
Wedded, with Theseus, all in jollity.



Fairy king, attend, and mark:
I do hear the morning lark.



Then, my queen, in silence sad,
Trip we after the night’s shade:
We the globe can compass soon,
Swifter than the wandering moon.



Come, my lord, and in our flight
Tell me how it came this night
That I sleeping here was found
With these mortals on the ground.


Consecration of the Wine and Cakes (Symbolic Great Rite)


Great Rite (Symbolic)


(HPS takes the chalice and the HP stands before her holding his athame.)


HPS:                As the athame is to the male.


(HP lowers his athame into the wine)


HP:                  The chalice is to the female.


HPS/HP:          And together we are one.


(HP replaces his athame upon the altar.)


Consecration of the Wine


HPS:                (lays her athame down and places the chalice on the pentacle.)


HPS:                May this offering to the God and Goddess keep us from ever knowing thirst.


Consecration of the Cakes


HPS:                (removes the chalice and replaces it with the plate of cakes before the. She touches each cake in turn with her athame.)


HPS:                May this offering to the God and Goddess keep us                                                               from ever knowing hunger.


Simple Feast (Cakes and Ale)


Note:   the ceremony of Cakes and Ales now proceeds according to the HPS’ wishes: either the plate and chalice is passed from covener to covener and they serve themselves or each other according to coven custom or the HPS and HP proceed from covener to covener serving them and finally each other.


HPS:                (When all of the coveners have partaken of the simple feast, the HPS places some food and drink in the libation bowl. HPS raises the libation plate in salute.)


HPS:    To the Gods.


Coveners:       To the Gods.


Closing the Circle


Release of Deities


Release of the Goddess


HPS:       (faces the altar, assumes the Goddess position—or alternatively salutes with athame—and recites)

Queen of the Universe who wears a mantle of stars and moonlight, on this Midsummer’s night,
We thank you for your attending and witnessing these rites.
With your help, we shall start down the path to wisdom’s light.

For this boon, and glimpse
Of your magick, and mystery,
We salute and thank Thee.

Alas, our time together now is past.
We bid thee farewell.
Stay if you will and join our repast.
Leave us if you must.
Ere you leave us, know that all who met here
Did so in perfect love and perfect trust. 
HPS:  (Extinguishes the Goddess candle)

Release of the God


HP: (Assumes the Osiris position)


Thou art the playful one, with pipe you prance,

The goat-foot Pan, lord of the dance.

With feral joy in ancient wood

You embue life with mirth and good.


For this boon, and glimpse
Of your magick, and mystery,
We salute and thank Thee.


Alas, our time together now is past.
We bid thee farewell.
Stay if you will and join our repast.
Leave us if you must.
Ere you leave us, know that all who met here

Did so in perfect love and perfect trust.


HP:  (Extinguishes the God candle)


Quarter Dismissals


(The HP follows the HPS around the quarters—except where noted—while the rest of the coven remain in place around the circle but mimic the HPS’ gestures. At each quarter, the HPS and HP salute the quarter with their athames. After the dismissal, the HPS, HP, and coveners, draw the banishing pentagram. The banishing pentagram of Earth shall be used for all dismissals.)


North              Hail, Faeries, Dwarfs and Gnomes of the Earth.

On this Midsummer’s night, that marks the height the Sun’s might, We thank you for witnessing and protecting our sacred magickal rite.

Go if you must; stay if you will; but know that we                                                                 met in perfect love and perfect trust.



(Draw the banishing pentagram of Earth)


















West               Hail, Faeries, Nymphs, Undines of the Waters,

On this Midsummer’s night, that marks the height the Sun’s might, We thank you for witnessing and protecting our sacred magickal rite.

Go if you must; stay if you will; but know that we                                                                 met in perfect love and perfect trust.




(Draw the banishing pentagram of Water)


South              Hail, Faeries and Salamanders of Fire,

On this Midsummer’s night, that marks the height the Sun’s might, We thank you for witnessing and protecting our sacred magickal rite.

Go if you must; stay if you will; but know that we                                                                 met in perfect love and perfect trust.



(Draw the banishing pentagram of Fire)












East                 Hail, Faeries, Sylphs, and Sprites of the Air,

On this Midsummer’s night, that marks the height the Sun’s might, We thank you for witnessing and protecting our sacred magickal rite.

Go if you must; stay if you will; but know that we                                                                 met in perfect love and perfect trust.


(Draw the banishing pentagram of Air)


Opening the Circle


(HPS and HP face the altar together. The Deities have been thanked and the Quarters dismissed, therefore, the next action is to ‘take down’ the circle. Since the circle was thrice cast, it should be thrice unwound. Also, because the circle was cast deosil it should be undone in a widdershins direction.)


HPS:                O Circle of Power, as I have conjured thee I now release your energies into this blade.


(In your mind’s eye, see the circle dissolve into a wispy energy smoke, which the glowing blade readily absorbs)


Where there once existed a rampart between this world and the Otherworld, the rampart is no more. Once again, our realms are separate. However, the love and joy with which we met here tonight remains undiminished.


HPS:    (Rejoins the HP at the altar and then together they face the rest of the coven)

Just as night passes into day and this Midsummer’s Night must end, it is time for us to leave this realm of magick, mystery, and the circle of our ancestors and friends.

The circle is open but remains unbroken. Now, the High Priest will leave you with Puck’s words of parting as a means of wishing you a merry meeting and a merry parting:

HP:                   If we shadows have offended, Think but this, and all is mended, That you have but slumber'd here While these visions did appear. And this weak and idle theme, No more yielding but a dream, Gentles, do not reprehend: if you pardon, we will mend: And, as I am an honest Puck, If we have unearned luck Now to 'scape the serpent's tongue, We will make amends ere long; Else the Puck a liar call; So, good night unto you all. Give me your hands, if we be friends, And Robin shall restore amends.

HP/HPS:     Blessed be.
Coveners:   Blessed be.


click this link, 2012 Litha Summer Solstice, to download the ritual in PDF format with all included graphics.





Alternative Wiccan Rite for Midsummer’s Day*

   Posted by: Scrivener

 Summer Solstice 2012(The place of meeting should be decorated with boughs and leaves of oak with acorns. If

there will be music, singing, and rhyme before the rite, it should concern the idea of sacrifice

that others may live, traditions that never die, magick, “life continuing in spite of all,” and the

high spirits of one close to the Elements.


If there is dancing, the Priestess and Priest should lead it so that the dancers whirl and

wheel about the dance floor. The dances of this ritual may be performed out of the Circle in

preparation for the rite; they should, in fact, be learned by all.


Games should be played utilizing a wheel, preferably one of wood and iron, with candles

or incense mounted upon it. Men and ladies, for example, might play a mildly erotic game of

“spin the wheel.” During the rite, this wheel should be leaned against the south side of the

altar. A container of the magickal catalyst should be placed upon the altar. If a labrys (doubleheaded

axe) can be fashioned or obtained, it should be hung upright in a dominant location

both before and during the rite.


Because of the large amount of lively dancing in this rite, short and light ceremonial garb

in the ancient Greek or Cretan style, or some other very minimal but appropriate clothing,

may be fashioned and worn.


According to legends and traditions of the Craft, actual shape-changing of dancers sometimes

occurred during this rite, especially among Witches who were well-practiced in magick and

experiencing the ecstasy of the Goddess in their magickal dancing. Only fragments of the rite

survived the terrible time of the burnings, but this reconstruction of it is mostly complete and

may again in the future be made whole through the study and practice of the modern Wicca.


The Great Circle shall be cast in the usual manner, except that a 15-foot circle shall be

used. To begin the rite, the priestess stands to the north of the mirror with the altar behind

her, and says:)


Witches all, in ages far past it was the custom on this day for the King who had ruled to

be sacrificed in a magical ceremony, that famine, storm, and war should not afflict the

people, and that the crops would grow tall and free from blight or drought. Darkness

would be removed from men’s souls by the courage, pride, and magick of the one who,

very willingly, walked steadily to his doom. The material rite was deeply emotional and

rendingly impressive; yet the magickal portion, unseen and unseeable by human eyes,

was awesomely stronger and more far-reaching. Such magick as this was cruelly powerful—

but it worked magnificently!


The Priestess sits, while the Priest stands in her place and with his arms out in invocation and


On this night we gather here to perform again in symbol and magickal dance the rite

of the Oak King’s sacrifice, as it was done in ages past. In this day, our Lady no longer


requires sacrifice of any among us, for the life she bestows is sweet, and in this season

the moon must wax.

The Priest turns to the mirror, holding forth his athame in salute, calling:

Oh laughing, naked Queen, beautiful and yet terrible, thou who, like all women, canst

make and then destroy thy man, and yet are beyond all blame—for thou art the Goddess—

be with us here. As the holy labrys doth have two edges, so also, Lady, do we

know that two faces dost thou have—one as serene, lovely, and clear as thy silver

moon; the other dark and awesome, for thou art as all women.

The Priest salutes with his athame. If one is present who can play a reed-pipe or recorder, he

shall at this point play a very brief minor-key tone. As the Priestess sits on the south edge of the

altar; her arms out like the limbs of the moon, the Priest comes to kneel before her, saying:

Thou who art above all adored, know that thy worshippers do give thee obeisance; the

wise, the strong, the powerful, and the very princes of the world do give honor to thee.


(Sign of the pentacle)


The Priest gives her the sword, which she holds before her like a scepter. He kneels once

more and continues:

The Goddess is kind when it pleases her. Thou who art the day art also the night, and at

times thou dost require blood, and darkness, and strife among men for thy purpose.


(Sign of the pentacle)


The Priest stands back with the men at the edge of the Circle. The Priestess stands, puts

down the sword, and motions for the music to begin. The men stand quickly while the women

follow the Priestess five or more times sunwise about the Circle in a slow, graceful, and

stately dance. Those led by her suddenly turn widdershins and dance and whirl and shout

wildly back five times or more. Each woman returns to her man and stands arms akimbo, while

the Priestess throws a handful of the magical catalyst into the incense brazier. When the

sparks have ceased, she seats herself upon the altar once again, saying:


The life of a year is 13 moons, with every season round. The life of the King shall pass


likewise from birth unto the ground.


The Priestess signals for the music to begin again. The women laughingly watch the men dance

sunwise around the Circle, following the Priest. In the dance, the Priest chants each line (he may

be prompted by the Priestess) and the men repeat, shuffling and stepping in time with the music,

imitating in every manner—physical, mental, and astral—all creatures mentioned in the King’s

chant. They make one circle for each “change,” the mood being light and cheerful.


I am a stag—of seven tines—for strength.

I am a flood—across a plain—for extent.

I am a wind—on a deep lake—for depth.

I am a ray—of the sun—for purity.

I am a hawk—above the cliff—for cunning.

I am a bloom—among the flowers—for excellence.

I am a wizard—who but I brings forth the hilltop’s magic fire?

I am a spear—that roars for blood—in vengeance.

I am a salmon—in a pool—for swiftness.

I am a hill—where poets walk—for wisdom.

I am a boar—strong and red—for power and valor.

I am a breaker—threatening doom—for terror.

I am a sea-tide—that drags to death—for might.

All do sit as the Priest invokes:

Who but I knows the secret of the unhewn dolmen?


He throws a small handful of the magickal catalyst* into the

incense brazier and sits. If it is desired, all may drink wine and rest at this time.

The Priestess stands with arms outstretched and calls:

When the Queen calls, there is none who would not willingly come. For Her libation

must be made with love and with pain. And in the magickal chase there is no transformation

which can stay her brassarids.


The Priestess signals for the music to begin again. Women join in a circle at the center around

the altar, facing outwards. The men join in a circle near the outer edge, facing inwards. The

men and women, led by the Priest and Priestess, will chant and imitate in very manner—

physical, mental, and astral—the creatures of the chant as they dance sunwards. As the

women dance, the men will stop and watch them, and vice-versa.


All: Cunning and art he did not lack, but aye her whistle would fetch him back.


Men: Oh, I shall go into a hare, with sorrow and sighing and mickle care,

And I shall go in the Horned God’s name, aye, til I be fetchéd hame.


Women: Hare, take heed or a bitch greyhound will harry thee all these fells around,

For here come I in our Lady’s name, all but for to fetch thee hame.


All: Cunning and art he did not lack, but aye her whistle would fetch him back.

Men: Oh, I shall go into a trout, with sorrow and sighing and mickle doubt,

And show thee many a crooked game, ere that I be fetchéd hame.


Women: Trout, take heed or an otter lank will harry thee close from bank to bank,

For here come I in our Lady’s name, all but for to fetch thee hame.


All: Cunning and art he did not lack, but aye her whistle would fetch him back.


Men: Oh, I shall go into a bee, with mickle horror and dread of thee,

And flit to the hive in the Horned God’s name, ere that I be fetchéd hame.


Women: Bee, take heed or a swallow hen will harry thee close both butt and ben,

For here come I in our Lady’s name, all but for to fetch thee hame.


All: Cunning and art he did not lack, but aye her whistle would fetch him back.


Men: Oh, I shall go into a mouse, and haste me unto the miller’s house,

There in his corn to have good game, ere that I be fetchéd hame.


Women: Mouse, take heed of a white tib-cat that never was baulked of mouse or rat,

For I’ll crack thy bones in our Lady’s name, thus shalt thou be fetchéd hame.


All: Cunning and art he did not lack, but aye her whistle would fetch him back.

At the conclusion all drop to a position of rest while the Priest says:

As one generation doth pass and the next appear thereafter, so have thy people always

continued. Thou hast returned to us, oh Lady. Return, we do ask, to the world outside to

bring back again the ancient ecstasy of joy and terror and beauty most sublime.


He salutes with his athame as the Priestess calls:


Achaifa, Ossa, Ourania, Hesachia, Tachema.

She throws a small handful of the magical catalyst* into the incense brazier and salutes with

her athame. The rite is ended.

Finally, the Great Circle shall be opened.


(*Magical Catalyst: Mix less than an ounce of saltpeter with an equal amount of chamomile

and powdered incense. Mix well, and place in a bowl at the base of the altar.)


Female: The Moon is full and rising

Making the meadow bright

And we maidens leap the circle ‘round

Clad in the moon’s soft light

A whisper in the meadow as

We wend through oak and corn

In fire the Oak King dies tonight

The Holly King is born


Male: The priests have entered the Giant’s


Of standing stone and spire

And in the dancing night we’ve seen

Fair Arianrhod’s tower

While in the fields the maidens feel

Their skin against the corn

In fire the Oak King dies tonight

The Holly King is born



* from “Creating Circles and Ceremonies” by Oberon Zell-Ravenheart & Morning Glory Zell-Ravenheart



Beltaine Ritual for 2012–Posted a bit a late

   Posted by: Scrivener

I’m still running behind on my postings. What can I say? Sometimes, despite our intentions and magickal workings, life and the universe just get in the way of doing what we set out to do earlier. You know what they say, if you want to hear the Gods laugh tell them your plans. I know that’s an old one borrowed from our Christian compatriots. Anyway below is the link to view and download the ritual.


2012 – Beltaine


Earth Day Sonnet Ritual

   Posted by: Scrivener Tags:

I know it’s a bit late but i wanted to post a working our coven, The Circle of the Dark Moon, did for Earth Day. This ritual originally appeared in Oberon Zell-Ravenheart’s book,  “Creating Circles and Ceremonies”.

Earth Day Sonnet Ritual



Witchcraft & Christianity

   Posted by: Scrivener Tags:

(*)During my years as a practicing Wiccan, or “witch” or gasp “warlock” (yes I use the ‘W’ word), I have had occasion to ask myself this question many, times. With the recent political controversy where the repugnicans would have you believe that Jesus hates liberals and only bible-thumpin’ funda-mentals curry the Divine’s favor, the question suddenly has more than its usual immediacy for me and for my brothers and sisters in Wicca.

First, let me get the usual questions out of the way. Wicca is a real religion, born in the 1950s as a recreation of the Old Religion of Northern Europe, which some believe dates back about 25,000 years. In the mid-1980s, the U.S. Courts accepted Wicca as a legitimate religion and granted us first Amendment rights and freedom from taxation. Therefore, the point is moot, really. The same U.S. Constitution that protects Christianity protects our religious freedom – and a good thing, too. Wicca is the fastest growing religion of the 20th Century.

Wiccans do not believe in an evil deity, and would not worship one if they did—well, I might. Wiccans do not practice human or animal sacrifice—although I am making a list should human sacrifice ever come back into vogue. The most sacred commandment our religion demands of us is to harm no one. If you think about that last statement carefully, it pretty well covers most of the Biblical Ten Commandments – the important parts, anyway. Even more importantly, we do not attempt to convert our friends and neighbors to Wicca. Our faith teaches us that when they are ready for what we have to teach, they will seek us out.

What about me, personally? Am I a New Age nut? Well, that depends on what you mean—or whom you ask. I’m an environmentalist, certainly—rabidly so. On the other hand, I do not partake in illegal drugs of any kind. I am a database administrator working on air force base for one of the largest Native American SB 8A set aside employers in the United States. I am a college graduate. I am a published novelist (“Is Wanting Enough”). I am a licensed pilot with multiple ratings. My favorite hobbies include running/walking with my dogs, bicycling, reading all sorts of books on Magick and Wicca, anthropology, and other religions (Wiccans are some of the best-read people on the planet). Alas, I haven’t the time to read as much fiction as I’d like—I’m still finishing, “The Deathly Hallows.” I am a veteran of the United States Marine Corps. I currently hold a secret clearance. In what way am I such an evil and dangerous neighbor?

Where does this knee-jerk hostility to the word “witch” come from?

It doesn’t come from the word, certainly. “Witch” is a corruption of “witcraft,” or “craft of the wise.” In fact, the Wiccan religion is sometimes called “The Craft of the Wise,” or just “The Craft.” There is nothing sinister there. Do Wiccans practice magick? Yes—resounding so for those of us in The Dark Moon Tradition—most Wiccans do practice some magick if only in ritual. Do Wiccans have supernatural powers? Yes they do but only those ‘supernatural’ powers innate in everybody and everything in an interconnected Creation. Oddly enough, those same Christians who believe the practice of magick is so evil are often those who most sincerely believe in faith healing. On the other hand, what most Christians fail to realize is that prayer is also a petitionary form of magick. Just think about that for a moment and try to explain the difference between me invoking Hekate or constructing a thoughtform to alter my reality or a Christian praying for their God to grant them a favor. Ahem, I’m waiting .

Let’s get back to the Craft of the Wise. During the Christian Inquisition, nobody really knows how many accused witches were burned at the stake. It is known, however, that a number of village wise women were accused of witchcraft and burned for curing fevers with nasty stuff like moldy bread. Were they followers of the Old Religion? Probably. Were they wise? You bet they were. Did you ever hear of penicillin? I wonder how many centuries of medical knowledge were lost because of a bunch of frightened priests? Can anyone say, “The Dark Ages?”

So where did the idea come from that we were (and are) Satanists?

The most obvious answer is that the moldy bread cure worked, and was unexplainable. A number of other herbal and common sense remedies were surprisingly effective, as “alternative” medicine is re- discovering today. The only way the church could admit these cures worked (and it was a little too obvious to deny) without admitting this was a really good thing was to make the claim that the women practicing these cures had made a pact with the Devil. Heavens, they couldn’t be physicians! Medicine was firmly in the hands of the priests, and the practice of medicine was expressly forbidden to women. At the time I write of, formal medicine consisted mostly of applying leeches to the sick.

Were the village wise women the only problem? No. During this early medieval period, when the Christians were converting Northern Europe at sword point, a lot of dirty tricks were played. The country folk, whom we believe to be the ancestors of modern Wicca, worshiped a Goddess we consider the Mother of Life, and a God we call the Horned Hunter, or God of Death. For us, death is merely a door to rebirth, so there is nothing at all fearful for us in a God of Death. In an effort to make non-Christianity something horrible, the monks who drew the medieval Biblical illustrations “borrowed” our Horned Hunter when they drew depictions of the Christian Devil. You needn’t take my word for this. Any educated person knows that the Greek Pan predates Christianity by some considerable period of time. Take a good look at a drawing of Pan in your nearest encyclopedia. Look familiar? He should. You’ve been looking at him in biblical illustrations dating back to your first Sunday school. Pan is the Greek form of our Horned Hunter. They are one and the same god. Read your mythology. Pan was never evil, just playful.

If all that weren’t enough, Exodus 22:18 was horribly mistranslated in the King James Version of the Christian Bible. The original “Suffer not a poisoner to live among you” became “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.” Some pretty bloodthirsty fundamentalist preachers want to enforce that mistranslation literally, even today. In August of 1999, Rev. Jack Harvey of Killeen, Texas, was quoted as stating publicly that all witches should be killed. He organized a “March Against Wickedness” for that Labor Day Monday in Killeen (which flopped pitifully), and I believe he was hoping and praying it would erupt into real violence, because he advised members of his congregation to carry guns, in case some of us witches decided to snatch his kids.

Other reasons for fear again date back to medieval times. The reasons have mostly been forgotten, but the fear remains. During medieval times, life was unpleasant. In fact, it was downright horrible for the peasants. Christianity taught the peasants that it didn’t matter, that the material world was to be shunned in favor of a reward in the Christian Heaven. Wiccans did not, and do not, agree. I can still remember my first teacher telling me that it would be difficult to cultivate my spiritual nature until at least my basic physical needs – as in food, shelter, warmth – were met. We are taught that achieving success at another’s expense is wrong (remember we are permitted to harm none!), but success in itself is actually a virtue. In medieval times, daring to hope and work for success was dangerous thinking. It might even have led to a collapse of feudalism. So the Christian hatred of that tenet of Wicca was one part envy, one part fear.

Another envy/fear combination had to do with the fact that Wicca is fun. The Old Religion is filled with laughter and playfulness. Our ceremonies are wonderful parties, full of happy tipsiness and flirtation. By comparison, medieval Christian practices were rather grim. Somehow, the Christians who were trying to convert us had to convince us that slipping off into the woods for a bonfire and a roaring good time wasn’t such a good idea. Do what they would, though, they couldn’t get us to give up our fun. Quite logically under the circumstances, they “borrowed” from us. The use of song and chants in ritual (although why the church couldn’t manage happy song, I can’t say), incense (borrowed from Mithraic ritual)- even some actual elements of ritual itself. You can hear echoes of our cakes and ale ceremony in Christian Communion. Oh, I don’t doubt that Jesus of Nazareth had bread and wine during his Last Supper! That’s as may be, but I don’t think the contents of his last meal became a central part of Christian ceremonies until Christianity clashed with the Old Religion in Europe.

Where did Jesus get the idea in the first place? Mithras, who died following a ritual meal of bread and wine? Or the cakes and ale of the Old Religion? Scary question, isn’t it? For the record, I believe it was Mithras, as he was the secret god of many of the Roman troops occupying Palestine at the time of Jesus of Nazareth. Nevertheless, enough Roman troops were European “barbarians” that it is just possible that some elements of our faith were known to Jesus himself.

20th Century Christian practices never struck me as being a barrel of laughs, either. Wiccans are still having fun. So there is bound to be some ongoing envy, if not outright fear.

I wonder how many Christians know how many of their holidays were originally ours.

Samhain, our New Year celebration, when the walls between the worlds are at their thinnest and our beloved dead walk and feast among us, became Christian All Hallows or Halloween. One ceremony used by pagans to encourage a rich crop (although not at Samhain, which is after the harvest) was the sweeping of brooms over the planted fields. To early Christians watching from a distance, it must have looked like the witches were riding on the brooms or trying to do so. Since Samhain was known to be the witches’ most important holiday, witches riding on broomsticks became the symbol of Halloween. Not so surprising at all.

Yule, or the winter solstice, when we celebrate the birth of the Sun God to Mother Earth and Father Time, was borrowed for the birthday of the Christian Jesus. Most Christian scholars agree that Jesus was actually born in the spring. The Yule log, the tree, and even the Nativity Crèche were originally pagan customs. If you have Wiccan friends, and you thought they were only protecting themselves by displaying a Nativity Crèche at Christmas, you were wrong. Wicans had Nativity Crèches long before you xtians came along to convert us.

Imbolc, our festival of light, when we celebrate the start of the Mother’s return to us, along with the birth of new lambs and flowers awakening under the snow, became Christian Candlemas.

Beltane, our famous (and infamous) fertility celebration when we leap the bonfires in joy at the arrival of summer, became May Day, famous for playful fertility celebrations throughout the Christian world.

Lammas, or August 1st, when we celebrate the fruitfulness of the land – well, how many Christians have celebrated the rich harvest to come down through the centuries?

There are many, many more examples of “borrowing.” And therein lies the real root of the problem. The thing fanatical Christians fear most of all is being forced to admit our kinship.

(*) reprinted with additonal comments/edits

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