The Second Letter of Diana

The Second Letter of Diana April 1, 2015

This is a discrete unit from my ongoing Books of the Sacred Marriage. Should I post it at all? The universal plague we face cannot be combatted by politeness. As I have said, Witchcraft is, and must inherently be, an In Your Face religion. I know, of course, there will be many who, out of ignorance, will insist on misunderstanding and misinterpreting this fictive epistle. I don’t care. The minority to whom it is addressed will understand it.

2. The Second Epistle of Diana

I, Diana X, to the High Priestesses of Our Lady and our Queen, Aradia, greetings:

Having heard that even within our family there have been controversies over what a High Priestess can or cannot do, should or should not do, I feel impelled to offer the insights I have had by the grace and power of our Goddess.

Here is the crucial fact: You have either Awakened, or you have not. If you have, then you are equal to any other who has Awakened, you have become a High Priestess of our family, and you have taken on many privileges, but even more responsibilities, especially to seek out and nurture those who need the Craft, for if our Craft be hid, it is hid from those who are lost.

You must observe carefully, not only those within our circle, but also those around us, for our primary service to the Goddess is to awaken all who can be Awakened. The ones who have been touched by the Spirit, whose talents have begun to waken, are among the most likely candidates. Even in these modern times, you must carry out your service to the Goddess with caution when reaching out to anyone outside our family and faithful followers. There are still servants of evil who intend to hunt us down. Begin slowly, with tea leaves, the cards, horoscopes, to assess their talents, and use your discernment to assess their character and virtues. Offer the first initiation to the ones you find suitable. Always initiate those who know they are seeking the light of the Gods.

If one who has found her way to us, hoping to understand what has happened to her, is ripe for the Awakening, you may attempt to precipitate it by various means, but especially by means of the true initiation. Always remember that you cannot promise the Awakening to anyone; it is conferred directly by the Gods, who may use you as their vehicle or may suddenly confer the state directly, without warning. Hence the young Witch may Awaken at her first initiation, or later in her training or practice of the Craft, or (if the Gods so choose) perhaps never. She can only wait upon it; but she will know it when it comes.

One who has begun breaking free of the lies and ignorance that imprison us, who has begun to learn her own power, but has not yet fully Awakened, is the one we call a Seeker. She may, if lucky, find you or another Awakened teacher, as someone who has already walked this path, has arrived at some answers of her own, and can guide her to the full experience and to full comprehension of what it means. Such a teacher will, like you, know techniques to further, accelerate, deepen, or complete the Seeker’s quest.

There are many paths that may lead to Awakening. No one path will always work for every person. A combination of several paths, or of their best qualities, works better for most seekers than any one path would—yet single-minded devotion to just one path may do it for some. The Gods do not want us to produce Awakening at will; such an ability would be very dangerous. However, even though Awakening cannot be produced at will, we can can make that possibility more probable, and we know that our most precious sacrament, in which we share in the joy of the Divine Lovers, is the path most likely to induce it.

To guide another person to an Awakening, you must know, from a viewpoint allowed only by Awakening itself, what that person needs in order to Awaken. The process of reaching Awakening must be different for each person, and no conditions can be placed on what her initiation must or must not include.

No matter how ecstatic an initiation may be, some students may still not remember who they truly are, for the angels may fetter them by many bonds. Hence you must work with such a student, divin­ing the patterns of her bondage, and dissolving those bonds by physical or magical or spiritual means, until she can pass upward from orgasm to ecstasy to Awakening.

Seek into the nature of the angels and spirits, to learn the nature of the bonds they cast upon men and women, so that you may undo such bonds in your students. And when you know their nature, you will have power over them (though in truth there is but one spirit in the world, and names of good or bad spirits are scarecrows to scare infants with) and over all that they rule.

All union with the Divine is ecstatic beyond ordinary comprehension and thus is ultimately sexual, for it is the everlasting ecstasy of the God and Goddess as they play that sustains the cosmos in existence. Thus all magic is sexual, and healthy sexuality is always magical. In the mystery and sacrament of sex is all Witchcraft; you cannot work magic without raising sexual energy. Sex is not merely a path to, but itself a goal of Awakening, for Awakened sex is to ordinary sex as Awakened consciousness is to ordinary consciousness as wakefulness is to sleeping. Just as those trapped in delusion do not know that Awakening exists, they cannot know what our joy is like when we become fully healed.

Sex is not the whole truth, but it is the key without which we would be forever locked out. The quest for sexual fulfillment is not an adolescent fantasy; it IS the quest for truth. Without sex there is no initiation, no magic, for Awakening is always Awakening into sexual freedom. Whoever cannot accept this is not brave or free enough yet to reach Awakening along this path.

The Awakened Priestess and the Seeker are related as teacher and student or, classically, as Master and Apprentice. Your students may form a group that is cohesive and supportive, and may become lifelong friends, but the group will not be a coven. Their loyalties and obligations will be toward you, not toward one another, as they are in a coven. You will, of course, have obligations toward your students, will meet these conscientiously, and will not take unfair advantage of them in any way.

The Seeker who has Awakened, has learned all she can from you, and has thus reached some answers of her own about her experiences may in turn become a teacher of others. Once she has awakened, she is your equal before the Goddess; there is no hierarchy among the Awakened.

As a High Priestess, you may have some of our most precious gifts; not everyone in our family, not even our Queens, need have them all. One is the ability to induce an Awakening in another instantaneously. Only if you are utterly an unflawed servant of the Goddess could you have that power; the Gods withhold it from all others.

Another is the ability to restore yourself or a Witch you are initiating to a state of innocence. That is, when a Witch Awakens, all the guilt and shame and self-loathing induced by maltreatment and oppression in our society may suddenly fall away, as she realizes those sins against her do not define who she is, realizes she can release them, and she will feel again as innocent, pristine, and morally justified as at age 13. This is the reality behind the myth of Diana’s restoring her virginity. Being able to restore the state of innocence is the most reliable earmark of the truly Awakened High Priestess, who really can work magic, can free her initiates from the glamour that has bewitched them, from the emotional plague that has crippled their sexuality, from the state of delusion that has enslaved them.

When you have Awakened, you must balance your pleasure against your duties. If you have sex with someone, that will be an initiation; power will be passed. You might catalyze release of your lover’s powers, turning her into a Seeker, or your play might spontaneously become a True Initiation, Awakening her. In either case, it will be your duty before the Goddess to train, mentor, and finally fully initiate her. Hence, if you have sex with anyone, whether male or female,you must inform the person ahead of time about what might happen. For a person to whom you cannot tell the truth about who you are, you might be wiser to seek your pleasure elsewhere.

Being Awakened, like the Awakened of any other path, you can choose your own standards, exercise free choices, and thus have free will. When not distracted by mundane worries and human frailties, you can be aware of the presence of the divine at any time, in any place.

You will want only to be safe, to love, to be loved, and to serve.

You will be humble, knowing that you are not the one running the universe.

You will be grateful for and celebrates all the gifts of the Gods, especially the ecstasy of our sexuality, which sustains us, motivates us, enlightens us.

You will not be driven by desire for wealth, fame, or power.

You will persevere in pursuing knowledge, truth, and wisdom.

You will seek out opportunities to be of service to others.

You will value and enjoy every person as unique.

You will never want to harm any living being. Any person in any society who claims to be Awake yet is willing to harm another, by action or inaction, is still lost in delusion. As a High Priestess, you are the Goddess and must be the friend of all mankind, not an enemy who would do harm. A God would never harm a human; so people who would harm others are still deluded, and not Gods.

You must persevere in drawing others up toward Awakening without support from any but our family. The Awakened are always shattering convention and going beyond it in our never-ending search for truth, just as new conventions are always being created by those who fear to reach for Awakening and fall back into hierarchies, rules, laws, canons, and traditions. You must therefore be a heretic from all religions, even the one called Witchcraft.

May the peace, the power, and the magic of our Goddess Diana be always with you. Always remember Aradia. So mote it be.

 

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  • Heady stuff. It’s steeped in language and tradition outside of my own path, but it’s potent food for thought none the less. Thanks for sharing.

  • Robert Mathiesen

    This is very good, Aidan, very good indeed. But I think there is somewhat more to say.

    There does seem to be a modest fraction of humanity who are wholly and inherently asexual, and yet they, too, can become Awake.

    Also, there can be a rich and full and fruitful Awakening without any input from any embodied or personalized teacher (as was mine).

    Furthermore, it does seem that there can be an Awakening from any activity that satisfies the need for close, sustained physical skin-to-skin contact with another human being, the need that I like to call “skin hunger,” quite independently of ethics or morality of the actions that satisfy it.

    In our culture, skin hunger is customarily (and arbitrarily) cut up into three differently named things: sex, nurture, and violence; but this division is a cultural thing, not inherent in the nature of the human organism. Awakening can occur as a woman nurses her baby, or cradles a wounded and dying person. And it can also occur in the thick of a no-holds-barred fight, where each is trying his best to harm or kill the other. In token of this, all three things (sex, nurturance and violence) can lead to orgasm in a human being. A significant number of women — but far from all — experience orgasm as they nurse their babies, at least at times. And there are men who ejaculate strongly as they are beating one another up, or are being exected or otherwise killed. (Compare the well-known legend about mandrakes that grow beneath a gallows.)

    And finally, in my own experience, all the Gods are not one God, and all the Goddesses are not one Goddess, and there is most definitely more than one Initiator. All these Gods and Goddesses, though equally Divine, do not agree with one another to any significant degree about what is right and wrong, or moral and immoral, or ethical or unethical. Nor do they all embody the same values in their various relations with humankind. In consequence they do not jointly call all men and women to the same way of life, nor collectively hold all men and women to the same standards of ethical or moral behavior.

    This is, of course, a very radical and challenging — even threatening — kind of hard polytheism, and it will be extremely offensive to many modern people. All I can offer in its support is my own insight and observation of humankind after my own experience of Awakening, and through the work this Awakening has worked in me since it happened. Take it or leave it as seems good to you. The Gods and Goddesses who call one person to his or her particular Awakening are not always the same Gods and Goddesses who call another person to his or her particular Awakening. And even if all were fully Awakened, all would not be wholly One. Or at least that is what my own experience of Awakening has told me.

    • aidanakelly

      Bob, I would tend to agree with most of your points. The issue of whether the Gods are same or different, one or many, male or female,etc., gets about as complex as the tensor calculus (I think). But the argument here is not with me. It’s with Diana, who is Dotty, Andy’s great-grandmother. She cut her teeth on the Cambridge classicists, got ecstatic over the discoveries of Freud, Jung, and Reich, and, while she knows Awakening can happen in many ways, she is focused on the fact that, instead of just waiting for Awakening to happen, sex–the traditional sexual initiation–gives a technology that can at least make Awakening more probable, though never certain. She focuses on the Goddess in parallel to the fact that, in her matriarchal family, men are never more than equal to the women–and then only when on their best behavior. . She is definitely opinionated about what sort of ethics follow from her theology. I struggled with material for years until I just recently realized that it could make sense only from her viewpoint.

      • Robert Mathiesen

        Thanks for the response, Aidan. This Diana sounds like someone with whom one could explore a great deal of challenging territory to mutual benefit. My ancestors on both sides were also very definitely matriarchal, and my women ancestors would have agreed with Andy’s great-grandmother about men, though none of them had any use for rational thought, academic discourse, or even psychology. So your comment clarifies (for me) what you wrote enormously, and puts me on very familiar ground

        I didn’t so much mean to argue or refute what you wrote as to broaden and “prove” (= test) it, of course — much as my father’s stepfather could test gold by ringing it against his teeth or biting it hard. (This method actually works, if you know what youf’re doing, But I never had a chance to master its fine points.) And my last sentence has in view a sort of respectful ethical or moral dissensus among thr Awakened, in place of the more popular preference for a consensus.

        As for meaningful senetence about the Gods and Goddesses, vis-a-vis tensor calculus — I think you’re quite right!

  • KateGladstone

    About innocence — what if the person who has just gotten Awakened (and thereby has that experience of “innocence”) has, for instance, previously harmed (perhaps tjrough theft, rape, or even murder) one or more humans. Does the newly Awakened, newly “innocent” say to him/herself (or even to others), “Oh, yes, I HAVE done evil … but I need not change my habit of harming others, let alone repay or make amends of any possible sort: for NOW I am innocent and always have been … “?
    This is no idle question. A twenty-something fellow I used to know (but, thankfully, soon stopped having anything to do with) had been reared in some sect of a long-standing polytheistic tradition (not Wicca) which, as he explained at some point (to me, and to other increasingly disgruntled members of the support-group wherein I had met him) provided “hughly effective” ritual expiation ceremonies which (he seriously believed this as _axiomatic_!) /a/ gave the wrongdoer a mental and emotional state of one again being clean and innocent, and further /b/ IN FACT restored the innocence of any wrongdoer who went through the proper rite or rites. (Oh, sure — he admitted — the victims of the wrongdoer _had_ been harmed, but this didn’t matter “on the God level” after the wrongdoer went through the proper ceremony and was thereby again “pure, clean, and innocent.” It wasn’t too long after I heard that convenient bit of theologizing before the person stating it was caught in some petty thefts and the like, then some not-so-petty thefts and other wrongs, and was expelled from the group and otherwise faced various consequences. To the end, he showed no understanding of how this could even be happening to him: given that, according to his premises, he was “an innocent as a newborn baby” by virtue of ceremony after his crime. (In vain did I, or anyone, point out that babies, however innocent, also face consequences for their actions, and learn thereby. Having “innocently” made a mess does not magically remove the need of dealing with it. He did not regard this as valid, as he thought that ANY consequence was unfair if the person getting it had been properly purged after doing wrong … )

    • aidanakelly

      You always raise interesting arguments, Kate. What is described in the letter is a way to enable an abused and/or exploited woman to let go of negative feelings about herself, if and precisely because she has been wronged and has not herself wronged anyone. It could not work for an actual wrongdoer. What you describe about that guy seems like a hypertrophy of the uninformed pre-Vacation-II concept of how confession and absolution worked. The fact is, whereas I certainly never did anything wrong enough as a kid to be sentenced to more than a few Paternosters And Ave Marias, a person who had committed anything like a crime was told he or she had to make amends before receiving absolution. That only worked on people who genuinely believed in the possibility of eternal damnation, of course.