Charge of the Goddess


Also found in: Wikipedia.

Charge of the Goddess

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

At the ceremony of Drawing Down the Moon, the High Priestess will stand with her arms raised as the High Priest, using the wand, invokes the Goddess and asks her to descend into the body of the Priestess and to speak through her to the assembled coven. Often that is exactly what happens (see Channeling), but the Goddess does not always deign to appear. At those times the High Priestess will instead recite what is known as the "Charge of the Goddess," speaking on the Goddess's behalf. This is the time honored speech given by Aradia to the Witches of Italy (see Aradia), as reported by Charles Godfrey Leland. The Italian version was rewritten by Doreen Valiente, when she and Gerald Gardner were fine-tuning the Gardnerian Book of Shadows in the early 1950s. Valiente presented both a prose and a poetic version. The Charge of the Goddess has become one of the best-loved pieces of ritual throughout Wicca, and is used not only by Gardnerians but by most other traditions also.