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Internet Book of Shadows, (Various Authors), [1999], at


This ritual came together in strange ways.  We are indebted to
Tony Kelly of Celene Community in Wales who wrote the body of it
in a piece called "Pagan Musings" in 1973, Kenny and Tzipora for
the Wine Blessing, and Thomas Palmer of Denver for the Cakes
Blessing.  The Quarters calling and dismissals were written by
Rowan Moonstone and revised by Bristlecone Glen.  Devin Storm,
Harper to Bristlecone wrote the God and Goddess Invocations, the
Circle Closing, and the Crone's speech.  We learned this
particular version of "We All Come From the Goddess/Hoof and
Horn" with the God verse from the Old Timers from United Earth
Assembly and the Witches' Version of " Amazing Grace" was taught
to us by Margot Adler at the America the Beautiful celebration in
Colorado Springs in July of 1993.  All these various parts came
together into one of the most powerful rituals we have ever seen.

We give it back to the community now with love and thanks.  It is
our heritage and our future.  We give back to the Earth that
which we have been given.
 - Bristlecone Glen


High Priestess
High Priest
Grey Man
Quarters Callers


Cakes & Wine
Dry Ice
Glow Sticks
Flash Paper

Quarters candles should be set up and lit before Circle.  Altar
Candles lit.  A cauldron sits in the north.  In the cauldron
should be glow sticks to light it from within, a pan of dry ice,
a candle, and the chalice.  The Crone sits, cloaked and hooded,
by the Cauldron.  The Harper sits in the east, an empty stool
sits beside the Harper.

Cast Circle and purify sacred space as is the custom of your

Spirits of the East!
Air, Breath of our ancestors
Be with us in this Circle
That we may KNOW we are the children of the Gods.

Spirits of the South!
Fire, Will of our ancestors,

Be with us in this Circle
That we may have the WILL to claim our heritage.

Spirits of the West!
Water, Blood of our ancestors,
Be with us in this Circle
That we may DARE to do the work of the Gods.

Spirits of the North!
Earth, Bones of our ancestors,
Be with us in this Circle
That we may NO LONGER BE SILENT, but may meet as one in love to
do the work of the Old Ones.

HP:  Maiden bring Your Flowers
     Mother, Bring Your Child
     Old One bring your Wisdom
     Bright Lady, Cerridwen
     We welcome Thee to this Circle in Herne's name.
     For we are the blush of Thy silken cheek.
     We are the children You hold to Your breast.
     We are the Carriers of Your ancient way.
     Bright Lady, Cerridwen, Welcome!

HPS: Hunter, bring Your prowess
     Warrior, bring your skill.
     Father, bring your guidance.
     Ancient One, Horned Crown
     We welcome Thee to this Circle in Thy Lady's name.
     For we are the flight of the arrow from Thy bow.
     We are the edge of the sword of Thy honor.
     We are the sparks of the flame of Thy love.
     Ancient One, Horned Crowned, Welcome!

HPS:      We're of the old religion, sired of Time, and born of
          our beloved Earth Mother.  For too long the people have

          trodden a stony path that goes only onward beneath a
          sky that goes only upwards.

HP:       The Horned God plays in a lonely glade for the people
          are scattered in this barren age and the winds carry
          his  plaintive notes over deserted heaths and reedy
          moors and into the lonely grasses.

(Grey Man raps staff on ground comes into center of Circle
unobserved by the HP/S.  When he speaks, HP/S should be

Grey Man: Who know now the ancient tongue of the Moon?  And who
          speaks still with the Goddess?  The magic of the land
          of Lirien and the old pagan gods have withered in the
          dragons breath; the old ways of magic have slipped into
          the well of the past, and only the rocks now remember
          what the moon told us long ago, and what we learned
          from the trees, and the voices of grasses and the
          scents of flowers.


(HP/S begin to spiral into the center of the Circle to meet the
Grey Man.)

HP:       We're pagans and we worship the pagan gods, and among
          the  people there are witches yet who speak with the
          moon and  dance with the Horned One.

HPS:      But a witch is a rare pagan in these days, deep and
          inscrutable, recognizable only by their own kind, by
          the light in their eyes and the love in their breasts,
          by the magic in their hands and the lilt of their
          tongue and by their knowledge of the real.

HP:       But the wiccan way is one way.  There are many; there
          are pagans the world over who worship the Earth Mother
          and the Sky Father, the Rain God and the Rainbow
          Goddess, the Dark One and the Hag on the mountain, the
          Moon Goddess and the little People in the mists on the
          other side of the veil.

HPS:      A pagan is one who worships the goddesses and gods of
          nature, whether by observation or by study, whether by
          love or admiration, or whether in their sacred rites
          with the Moon, or the great festivals of the Sun.

Grey Man: Many suns ago, as the pale dawn of reason crept across
          the pagan sky, man grew out of believing in THE GODS.

Harper:   He has yet to grow out of disbelieving in them.

Grey Man: He who splits the Goddess on an existence-nonexistence
          dichotomy will earn himself only paradoxes, for the
          gods are not so divided and nor the magic lands of the
          Brother of Time.

Harper:   Does a mind exist?

Grey Man: Ask her and she will tell you yes, but seek her out,
          and she'll elude you.  She is in every place, and in no

          place, and you'll see her works in all places, but
          herself in none.  Existence was the second-born from
          the Mother's womb and contains neither the first-born,
          nor the unborn. Show us your mind, and we'll show you
          the gods!

Harper:   No matter that you can't, for we can't show you the
          gods.   But come with us and the Goddess herself will
          be our love and the God will call the tune.

Grey Man: But a brass penny for your reason; for logic is a
          closed ring, and the child doesn't validate the Mother,
          nor the dream the dreamer.  (Grey Man turns to face the
          seated  Crone.  Speaks almost as if talking to himself)
          And what matter the wars of opposites to she who has
          fallen in love with a whirlwind or to the lover of the

          arching rainbow.

Harper:   (To HP/S) But tell us of your Goddess as you love her,
          and the gods that guide your works, and we'll listen
          with  wonder, for to do less would be arrogant.  but
          we'll do  more, for the heart of man is aching for
          memories only  half forgotten, and the Old Ones only
          half unseen.

HP:       We'll write the old myths as they were always written
          and  we'll read them on the rocks and in the caves and
          in the deep of the greenwood's shade, and we'll hear
          them in the rippling mountain streams and in the
          rustling of the leaves, and we'll see them in the storm
          clouds, and in the evening mists.  We've no wish to
          create a new religion for our religion is as old as the
          hills and older, and we've no wish to bring differences

Harper:   Differences are like different flowers in a meadow, and

          we are all one in the Mother.

HPS:      What need is there for a pagan movement since our
          religion has no teachings and we hear it in the wind
          and feel it in the stones and the Moon will dance with
          us as she will?

Harper:   There is a need.  For long the Divider has been among
          our people and the tribes of man are no more.  The sons
          of the Sky Father have all but conquered nature, but
          they have poisoned her breast and the Mother is sad for
          the butterflies are dying and the night draws on.

Grey Man: A curse on the conqueror!

HP/S:     But not of us!

Harper:   For they curse themselves for they are nature too.

Grey Man: They have stolen our magic and sold it to the
          mindbenders and the mindbenders tramp a maze that has
          no outlet for they fear the real for the One who guards
          the path.  Where are the pagan shrines?  And where do
          the people gather?  Where is the magic made?  And where
          are the Goddess and the Old Ones?

HP:       Our shrines are in the fields and on the mountains, in
          the stars and in the wind, deep in the greenwood and on

          the algal rocks where two streams meet.  But the
          shrines are deserted, and if we gathered in the arms of
          the Moon for our ancient rites to be with our gods as
          we were of old, we would be stopped by the dead who now
          rule the Mother's land and claim rights of ownership on
          the Mother's breast, and make laws of division and
          frustration for us.


HPS:      We can no longer gather with our gods in a public place

          and the old rites of communion have been driven from
          the towns and cities ever deeper into the heath where
          barely a handful of heathens have remained to guard the
          old secrets and enact the old rites.  There is magic in
          the heath far from the cold grey society, and there are

          islands of magic hidden in the entrails of the
          metropolis behind closed doors, but the people are few,
          and the barriers between us are formidable.

HP:       The old religion has become a dark way, obscure, and
          hidden in the protective bosom of the night.  Thin
          fingers turn the pages of a book of shadows while the
          sunshine seeks in vain his worshippers in his leafy

Harper:   Here, then, is the basic reason for a Pagan Movement;
          we must create a pagan society wherein everyone shall
          be free to worship the goddesses and gods of nature,
          and the relationship between a worshipper and their
          gods shall be sacred and inviolable, provided only that
          in their love of their own gods, they doesn't curse the
          names of the gods of others.

HPS:      It's not yet our business to press the law-makers with
          undivided endeavor to unmake the laws of repression
          and,  with the Mother's love, it may never become our
          business for the stifling tides of dogmatism are at
          last already in ebb.  Our first work, and our greatest
          wish, is to come together, to be with each other in our
          tribes for we haven't yet grown from the Mother's
          breast to the stature of the gods.

HP:       We're of the earth, and sibs to all the children of
          wild nature, born long ago in the warm mud of the ocean
          floor;  we were together then, and we were together in
          the rain forests long before that dark day when,
          beguiled by the pride of the Sky Father, and forgetful
          of the Mother's love, we killed her earlier-born
          children and impoverished the old genetic pool.

Grey Man: The Red child lives yet in America; the Black Child has

          not forsaken the gods; the old Australians are still
          with their nature gods; the Old Ones still live deep in
          the heart of Mother India, and the White Child has
          still a foot on the old wiccan way, but Neanderthaler
          is no more and her magic faded as the Lli and the
          Archan burst their banks and the ocean flowed in to
          divide the Isle of Erin from the land of the White
          Goddess.  Man looked with one eye on a two-faced god
          when he reached for the heavens and scorned the Earth
          which alone is our life and our provider and the bosom
          to which we have ever returned since the dawn of Time.


Harper:   He who looks only to reason to plum the unfathomable is
          a fool, for logic is an echo already implicit in the
          question, and it has no voice of its own;  but he is no
          greater fool than he who scorns logic or derides its
          impotence from afar, but fears to engage in fair combat
          when he stands on his opponent's threshold. Don't turn
          your back on Reason, for his thrust is deadly; but
          confound him and he'll yield for his code of combat is
          honorable. So here is more of the work of the Pagan

HPS:      Our lore has become encrusted over the ages with occult

          trivia and the empty vapourings of the lost.  The
          occult arts are in a state of extreme decadence,
          astrology is in a state of disrepute and fears to
          confront the statistician's sword; alien creeds oust
          our native arts and, being as little understood as our
          own forgotten arts, are just as futile for their lack
          of understanding, and more so for their unfamiliarity.

HP:       Misunderstanding is rife. Disbelief is black on every
          horizon, and vampires abound on the blood of the
          credulous.  Our work is to reject the trivial, the
          irrelevant and the erroneous, and to bring the lost
          children of the Earth Mother again into the court of
          the Sky Father where reason alone will avail.

Harper:   Belief is the deceit of the credulous; it has no place
          in the heart of a pagan.

Grey Man: But while we are sad for those who are bemused by
          Reason,  we are deadened by those who see no further
          than his syllogisms as he turns the eternal wheel of
          the Great Tautology.

HP:       We were not fashioned in the mathematician's
          computations, and we were old when the first alchemist
          was a child.

HPS:      We have walked in the magic forest, bewitched in the
          old Green Things; we have seen the cauldron and the one

          become many and the many in the one; we know the Silver

          Maid of the moonlight and the sounds of the cloven
          feet.   We have heard the pipes on the twilight ferns,
          and we've seen the spells of the enchantress, and Time
          be stilled.   We've been into eternal darkness where
          the Night Mare rides and rode her to the edge of the
          Abyss, and beyond, and we know the dark face of the
          Rising Sun.

Harper:   Spin a spell or words and make a magic knot; spin it on

          the magic loom and spin it with the gods.  Say it in
          the old chant and say it to the Goddess, and in her
          name.   Say it to a dark well and breathe it on a


HP:       There are no signposts on the untrod way,

HPS:      but we'll make our rituals together and bring them as
          our gifts to the Goddess and her God in the great

(HP/S turn to Circle)

HP:       Here, then, is our work in the Pagan Movement; to make
          magic in the name of our gods, to share our magic where
          the gods would wish it, and to come together in our
          ancient festivals of birth, and life, of death and of
          change in the old rhythm.

HPS:      We'll print the rituals that can be shared in the
          written work;

HP:       We'll do all in our power to bring the people together,

          to teach those who would learn, and to learn from those

          who can teach.

HPS:      We will initiate groups, bring people to groups, and
          groups to other groups in our common devotion to the
          goddesses and gods of nature.

HP:       We will not storm the secrets of any coven, nor profane

          the tools, the magic, and still less, the gods of

HPS:      We'll collect the myths of the ages, of our people and
          of the pagans of other lands, and we'll study the books
          of the wise and we'll talk to the very young.

HP:       And whatever the pagan needs in their study, or their
          worship, then it is our concern, and the Movement's
          business to do everything possible to help each other
          in  our worship of the gods we love.

HPS:      We are committed with the lone pagan on the seashore,
          with he who worships in the fastness of a mountain
          range or she who sings the old chant in a lost valley
          far from the metalloid road.

HP:       We are committed with the wanderer, and equally with
          the prisoner, disinherited from the Mother's milk in
          the darkness of the industrial webs.

HPS:      We are committed too with the coven, with the circular
          dance in the light of the full moon, with the great
          festivals of the sun, and with the gatherings of the

HP:       We are committed to build our temples in the towns and

          in the wilderness, to buy the lands and the streams
          from the landowners and give them to the Goddess for
          her children's use, and we'll replant the greenwood as
          it was of old for love of the dryad stillness, and for
          love of our children's children.

HP/S:     This we will do.  What will you?  (At this point, HP/S
          should walk around the Circle and "gather" the pledges
          from those in Circle who wish to give them.
          Participants should think carefully about what they
          wish to pledge before the Gods in this ritual.  When
          all  pledges are gathered, HP/S takes them to the Grey

HPS:      When the streams flow clear and the winds blow pure,
          and the sun never more rises unrenowned nor the moon
          ride in the skies unloved;

HP:       when the stones tell of the Horned God and the
          greenwood grows deep to call back her own ones, then
          our work will be ended

HP/S:     and the Pagan Movement will return to the beloved womb
          of our old religion, to the nature goddesses and gods
          of paganism.   (Grey Man nods, receives the pledges and
          palms flash powder unobtrusively.  Conducts HP/S to the
          Crone.  Grey Man opens hands and lets paper fall on
          candle.  Crone pours hot water on dry ice, stands up,
          throws back hood of cape)

Crone:    I have heard your call across the mountains.  I have
          heard your cries within the web of life and I have come

          once more.  Single is the race, single of men and Gods.

          From a single source we both draw breath, but a
          difference of power in everything keeps us apart.  You
          are the children of my heart - the  light of my Soul.
          And I bring with me the seeds of your  ancestors that I
          have kept safe for you.  Like the cycle  of the
          seasons, I give them again that you may plant yet
          again.  Sow the seeds for yourselves , for your
          children, and your children's children.

(Crone hands basket of seeds to HP/S.  Reaches into the well
again and draws out chalice from cauldron.)

          The chalice contains the blood of those who have died
          for the crime of being different, the sweat of those
          who toiled that the path of the Old Ones might survive,
          and the tears of those who thought themselves alone.
          The cauldron of the Gods is that of change - of turning

          evil to good, death to life.  Through the power of the
          Cauldron, turn the blood of death to the water of life,
          turn the crime of being different to the strength of
          being whole.  Turn the sweat of toil to the joy of work
          well done.  Turn the tears of those alone to the tears

          of family reunited.  The present is the balance between
          the past and the future.  The power lies within your
          heart, within your hands.  Do you have the courage?
          The choice is his, the choice is hers, the  choice is
          yours.  Can you make a difference?  WILL you make a

(Crone hands chalice to HP/S and wraps cloak around her,  sitting
down once more.)

HP/S spiral back out to the Circle.

Chalice blessing:

HP:       Be it known that a man is not greater than a woman
HPS:      Nor is woman greater than man
HP:       For what one lacks
HPS:      The other can provide
HP:       As the athame is to the male
HPS:      So is the cup to the female
HP/S:     And when conjoined, they become one in truth.  For
          there is no greater magick in all the world than that
          of love.

Cakes Blessing:

HPS:      Be it known that death is not the end of life ...
HP:       But the beginning of the cycle of rebirth.
HPS:      As grain is touched by death's scythe ...
HP:       And passes through fire to be reborn as bread ...
HPS:      So are we reborn, passing through death into the next

(High Priest draws Invoking Pentagram over cakes with Athame,
while both say:

HP/S:     As the Earth gives its life to strengthen us, so shall
          we, in death, strengthen the Earth, for life and death
          together are the cycle of rebirth.

HP/S take of cakes and wine and pass the basket and chalice to
quarters callers to take to the Circle.

We all come from the Goddess
And to Her we shall return
Like a drop or rain
Flowing to the ocean

We all come from the Horned One
And to Him we shall return
Like a flash of flame
Ascending to the heavens.

Hoof and Horn
Hoof and Horn
All that dies shall be reborn
Vine and Grain
Vine and Grain

All that falls shall rise again.

(The chant may evolve into others such as the Isis Astarte and
corresponding God chants.  Go with the flow.   When all in the
Circle have partaken of cakes and wine, the chalice comes back to
the HP and HPS, who take it to the Harper.  Harper eats and
drinks, takes cakes and wine to Grey Man.  Grey Man eats and
drinks, takes cakes and wine to Crone, who eats, drinks, and
receives seeds and chalice again.  Replaces chalice in Cauldron,
covers seeds with cloak.  When HPS feels energy has built to a
peak, she calls a halt to it by raising her arms and dropping
them to her sides.)

HP/S:     Remember this night.  Take the energy that has been
          raised here by your sisters and brothers and put it
          into your pledges.  YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

HPS:      Hunter, for Your prowess
          Warrior, for Your skill
          Father for Your Guidance
          Ancient One, Horned Crowned,
          We thank you and bid you Hail and Farewell!

HP:       Maiden, for Your flowers.
          Mother, for Your child.
          Old One, for Your Wisdom.
          Bright Lady, Cerridwen, we thank You
          And bid you Hail and Farewell!

Spirits of the North!
Earth, Body of our ancestors.
Go with us from this place
United as heirs of our ancestors.

Spirits of the West!
Water, Blood of our ancestors.
We have the courage to dare to do the work.
Go with us from this place
United as heirs of our ancestors.

Spirits of the South,
Fire, will of our ancestors.
We have the will to do that which we promised
Go with us from this place
United as heirs of our ancestors.

Spirits of the East
Air, breath of our ancestors.
We KNOW that we are the children of the Gods and all one family.
Go with us from this place
United as heirs of our ancestors.

HP draws power back up into the blade of the sword/athame and
earths the power.  HP, HPS, Harper, Grey Man and Crone move into
a circle.  The next five lines should be shot from person to
person, to form a pentagram:

HPS:      The Circle is Open

HP:       But not forgotten!
Harper:   The Circle is unbroken.
Grey Man: Nothing is forgotten
Crone:    The Circle is Free
All:      Nothing is ever forgotten

HPS, HP, Harper, Grey Man, and Crone join the larger Circle.  HPS
or Harper calls out lines of Amazing Grace to the Circle as all

Amazing Grace! How sweet the Earth
That formed a Witch like me
I once was burned, now I survive
Was hanged, but now I sing.

Twas grace that drew down the moon
And grace that raised the sea
The magick of the people's will
Will set our Mother free!

Amazing Grace! How sweet the Earth
That formed a Witch like me
I once was burned, but now I thrive
Was hanged but now I sing.

HPS:      Blessed Be!

Next: Covenant of the Goddess, History (Michael Thorn)