Ritual nudity plays an important role in the practices of Wicca. This state of being naked in a magick circle is often referred to as being ‘skyclad’. Being naked might be a natural state for us to be in, but it is not one which is usually part of our ordinary world. By being naked the practitioners remove any reference to status or mundane occupation, which might be interpreted from their clothes and accoutrements. There is also an element of breaking social taboos and demonstrating trust in the other practitioners by being in the uncovered state of nudity.
Reference to nudity can be found in the earliest versions of the Charge of the Goddess and in most of the versions of the Book of Shadows.
“And ye shall all be freed from slavery,
And so ye shall be free in everything;
And as the sign that ye are truly free,
Ye shall be naked in your rites, both men
And women also: this shall last until
The last of your oppressors shall be dead…”
This extract from Aradia Gospel of the Witches became incorporated into the Wiccan tradition, at least in part, by its adaptation and amalgamation into the Charge of the Goddess. In it the goddess Diana addresses her daughter Aradia, giving her instruction on how to teach witchcraft to humanity. Ten years earlier Leland had commented specifically on witches practicing their witchcraft naked under the full moon in Gypsy Sorcery:
“Moon-worship is very ancient; it is alluded to as a forbidden thing in the Book of Job. From early times witches and other women worked their spells when stark-naked by the light of the full moon”
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.