Adept

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Adept

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

In its broadest sense, an Adept is a magical Master—an initiate who has worked through many years of learning and experience to become a teacher and Elder. Medieval magicians and alchemists applied the term to any master of their sciences.

The Theosophists say that Adepts control forces in both the physical and spiritual realms, that they are able to prolong their lives by many years, if not centuries, and that their knowledge far exceeds that of normal human beings. Adepts are also referred to as Mahatmas, Rahats, Rishis, and as the Great White Brotherhood.

In Witchcraft, the term "Elder" is preferred and there is no connotation of having lived an extraordinary number of years in this lifetime. There is, however, a belief among many Wiccans that the position does come after many lifetimes spent in the Craft (reincarnation being one of the tenets of Wicca). An Adept is usually one who teaches others, and will often work one on one with a neophyte Witch, bringing the person to the point of Initiation and, not infrequently, beyond that.

"Adept" is not an official title in Witchcraft; it is an appellation earned but not bestowed.

Francis Barrett, in The Magus (1801), states: "To be an adept is possible. . . to be an adept, according to God's will, is no contemptible calling."

A Solitary Wiccan may well consider himor herself an Adept, and be so considered by others. This is especially true if the Witch is an expert in a particular field, such as herbology, astrology, or divination.