Mastering Witchcraftby Paul A Huson
An enduring classic since its publication in 1970, Mastering Witchcraft is one of the best how-to manuals for those wishing to practice traditional European Witchcraft as a craft rather than a New Age religion. Starting from first principles, Huson instructs the novice step by step in the arts of circle casting, blessing and banning, the uses of amulets and talismans, philters, divination, necromancy, waxen images, knots, fascination, conjuration, magical familiars, spells to arouse passion or lust, attain vengeance, and of course, counter-spells to exorcize and annul the malice of others.
"A genuine vade mecum."-The Catholic Herald.
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Though many readers who are only familiar with neo-wiccan traditions and books created in the past 20 years may find the book objectionable, the book does give an accurate glimpse of European based pre-New Age Witchcraft. Beside giving the reader a glimpse of other approaches to witchcraft, the book also contains some effective spells and rituals. It should be on the reading list of anyone who wants to study witchcraft in a serious way. A note to those reviewers who objected to Huson's reference to the devil. In older European Witch traditions, especially those coming out of Britain, the God was frequently called the 'Devil'. Also the High Priest as the living representitive of the God was also sometimes titled the 'Devil.' This has been historically documented whatever your feeling about the word are. In this context 'Devil' does not have any of the Evil attributed of the Judeo-Christian 'Satan.' Witches of older British heritage who use this term are not Satanic Witches as implied by another reviewer. This is presisely why Paul Huson's Mastering Witchcraft is a must read. Modern New Age fluff books give many airy fairy misperceptions as to how witchcraft was historically practiced before the 60's.
For those who are Wiccans you will not like this book because he says it is for Witches, Warlocks & Covens. Warlock might be a bad word to Wiccans but for those who practice Witchcraft, we do not use it in such a way. This book will give you a very good foundation in Witchcraft, unlike Mr. Gardner's books this book was never intended to be a book on Wicca or Wiccans. If you are interested in Wicca I suggest reading Gerald Gardner's books: Witchcraft Today & The Meaning of Witchcraft, because that is where the birth of Wicca really took place, Mr. Gardner created Wicca the Religion as it is known today. So yes if you are of the Wiccan mentality and you follow all the others in the Wiccan herd you will run away from this book as fast as you can! If I could have I would have gave this book 10 stars, a copy of this book should be in the library of all Witches & Warlocks who practice the Old Ways.
I mix my beliefs with Wicca, Satanic Witchcraft, Shamanics, and Night Magick. I thought the book was good. But I do not agree with the author that Cernunnos is the devil. When reading the book, you must be aware that this book is mainly a Satanic Witche's book, not a Wiccan book. Huson uses the word 'warlock' several times in this book and many Wiccans who read this book complain about this. 'Warlock' is used by Satanic Witchs mostly in the USA, it is not used by Wiccans. Though some Wiccan covens do use the word to refer to someone who has been kicked out of the coven for breaking the rede. Below, I will give a list of books for both Satanic Witchcraft and Wicca that I recommend. Unfortunatly, there is only two Satanic Witchcraft books that I know of. This one and 'The Satanic Witch.' (I had to edit the list and only put the names of the book and not the author. Hopefully the list below will show up, there is suppose to be nine books shown. If not, you can email me and ask for the list and the authors.)