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Ch.11 Adore the Spirit of Me (WMB 11.d)

Extract from: Wicca: Magical Beginnings written by d’Este & Rankine, 2008 (Avalonia.) PB / Kindle @ https://amzn.to/3Ay4HJr.

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(Textual analysis of the Charge of the Goddess part 2)



Occultists would also incorporate these ideas into their world-views and hence their writings. The author George Russell (AE) in his classic work The Candle of Vision, published in 1918, espoused the original divinity being divided into the Great Mother and Great Father, from whom the gods and goddesses derived. This idea was also subsequently seen in the occult novels of Dion Fortune in the 1930s.


In the part version of the Charge published by Gardner in Witchcraft Today in 1954 all the names following that of Aphrodite were omitted – i.e. Ceridwen, Diana, Arianrhod and Bride – giving the impression that the Celtic Goddesses were later additions. It is also interesting here to note the difference between the version of the Charge attributed to Doreen Valiente and published in the Witches Bible where the goddess Diana is changed into Dana and the name of the Greco-Roman Egyptian goddess Isis is added before that of Bride.


Reference to Melusine occurred in Crowley’s Law of Liberty, and some discussion of her is called for here to put her inclusion into perspective. Melusine was described in the late fourteenth century tale of Mélusine de Lusignan.[1] Melusine can be seen as the archetypal fairy wife. In different versions of the tale she is half fish, serpent or dragon. The gist of the story is that she married Remond, who became the Conte de Poitiers. She made Remond swear that on Saturdays he would allow her privacy, but after his brother made him wild with jealousy, Remond burst in on Melusine and realised her true nature. She then left him, in the manner of the fairy wife whose true nature has been discovered. The inclusion of such a figure may seem strange, but Melusine was a tremendously popular figure, like Morgan Le Fay, whose roots hint at earlier divine origins. Her inclusion does however provide a further clear illustration that this piece of prose does not have Roman origins as Gardner suggested.


We may also conclude that it is possible that the person who compiled the earliest versions of the Charge had read Crowley’s Law of Liberty – material from which can be found in both the earlier Lift up the Veil and the later Charge of the Goddess. Crowley mentioned Melusine in the Law of Liberty when he wrote: “Do not embrace mere Marian or Melusine; she is Nuit Herself, specially concentrated and incarnated in a human form to give you infinite love, to bid you taste even on earth the Elixir of Immortality”. We can see here the equation of Nuit as the universal goddess, and the idea of the High Priestess as being the representative of this goddess in ceremonies.

[1] Mélusine de Lusignan, Jean d’Arras, 1393




Extract from: Wicca: Magical Beginnings written by d’Este & Rankine, 2008 (Avalonia.) PB / Kindle @ https://amzn.to/3Ay4HJr. Shared here with the intention to inspire and inform the now and future generations interested in Wicca and other Pagan traditions inspired by it.

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My name is Sorita d'Este

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Many years ago I dedicated myself to the pursuit of both esoteric knowledge, and an understanding of polytheism, the Gods and Nature.  I have been a full-time writer, author and publisher, specialising subjects linked to the occult, witchcraft, Paganism, mythology, ancient religions and magic - and all kinds of things in between since 2003. 

 

I live on a hill in Glastonbury, overlooking the marshes of Somerset,  a place of myth and legend, and a crossroad for many different religions. Here I am frequently found digging and growing, serving my fluffy rescue cat and navigating the unknown with my teenage son.  

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