The Charge of The Goddess

Now listen to the words of the great mother, who was of old also called: Artemis, Astarte, Athene, Dione, Melusine, Aphrodite, Cerridwen, Diana, Arianrhod, Isis, Brighid, Mary, and by many other names:

Whenever you have need of anything, once in the month and better it be when the moon is full, then you shall assemble in some secret place and adore the Spirit of me, I who am queen. There you shall assemble, you who are fain to learn the mysteries yet have not won its deepest secrets. To these will I teach all things that are as yet unknown. And you shall be free from slavery, and as a sign that you be truly free be naked, you shall dance, sing, feast, and make music and love, all in my praise. For mine is the ecstasy of the spirit, and mine also is joy on earth, for my law is love unto all beings.

Keep pure your highest ideals. Strive ever towards them, let nothing stop you nor turn you aside. For mine is the secret door which opens upon the land of youth, and mine is the cup of the wine of life and the cauldron, which is the holy vessel of immortality.

I am the gracious Goddess who gives the gift of joy unto the heart of man. Upon earth I give the knowledge of the spirit eternal and beyond death I give peace and freedom and reunion with those who have gone before. Nor do I demand sacrifice, for I am the Mother of all living, and my love is poured out upon the earth.

Hear the words of the Holy Mother, the dust of whose feet are the hosts of Heaven, whose body encircles the universe: I am the beauty of the green earth and the white moon among the stars, the mystery of the waters, and the desire of the heart of man. I call upon thy soul to arise and come unto me. For I am the soul of nature who gives life to the universe. From me all things proceed and unto me all things must return. Before my face, beloved of angels and men, let thine innermost divine self be enfolded in the rapture of infinite joy. Let my worship be within the heart that rejoices, for all acts of love and pleasure are my rituals.

Therefore, let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honor and humility, mirth and reverence within you. And you who think to seek for me, know your seeking and yearning shall avail you not, unless you know the mystery: if that which you seek you find not within yourself, you will never find it without. For behold, I have been with you from the beginning and I am that which is attained at the end of desire.

-Adapted from Doreen Valiente



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