Day Christian - The witches' book of the dead

Author : Day Christian
Title : The witches' book of the dead
Year : 2011

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Foreword. The earliest mentions of Witches in Christian times depict them as people who communicate, or claim to communicate, with the dead. This theme appears even in ancient writings of the pre-Christian era. It is noteworthy that the association of Witches with the dead predates the insertion of Satan or the Devil into Witchcraft. This association was primarily concocted by Catholic theologians and became the basis for so-called historical Witchcraft. However, the data used by scholars that now constitutes “historical Witchcraft” is not an ethnographic study of a people known as Witches. It is instead a record of beliefs held by non-Witches about supposed Witches, mixed together with theological agenda. I have long held to the “Old Magic” of Witchcraft, the ways that are rooted in pre-Christian beliefs and practices. This type of magic is not watered down or repackaged to suit political correctness issues in the ways that modern practices have come to present Witchcraft. It is for this reason that I was particularly interested in writing the foreword to Christian Day's book on Witches and spirits of the dead. With this work, Christian adds significantly to this rarely explored subject. I have known Christian Day for several years, and it is no secret that he is a controversial figure, particularly in Salem, Massachusetts. Therefore it will come as no surprise that this book is controversial as well. But controversy can help break up complacency and dismantle worn-out concepts, and I believe this is part of the destiny of this book. Among the most controversial elements in this book is the author's selfidentification as a Warlock. The term has long been regarded in modern Wiccan and Witchcraft circles to define an “oath-breaker” or a renegade male Witch who violates the ethics of the Craft. In earlier periods it was used to denote a male practitioner of Witchcraft as distinguished from a female Witch. In the 1960s the term “Witch” was regarded as a negative term in mainstream culture; it bore the stigma of devil worship and diabolical practices. During this decade, modern practitioners envisioned the Witch as a misunderstood and wrongfully maligned figure. These people openly claimed the word as an empowering term, and argued for the Witch as a practitioner of Old Magic (with a spiritual lineage to ancient fertility practices rooted in pre-Christian European beliefs). I first entered the Craft community in the summer of 1969. It was not uncommon for male Witches of the period to refer to themselves as Warlocks. In time, modern Witches (while holding to the term “Witch” despite its negative connotations) rejected the name Warlock, dismissing it as a defamed term like the name “Witch” had previously been regarded. ...

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