The 'Gardnerian' Book of Shadows

The Warning

(1953)

Keep this book in your own hand of write. Let brothers and Sisters copy what they will, but never let this book out of your hands, and never keep the writings of another, for if it be found in their hand of write, they may well be taken and tortured. Each should guard his own writings and destroy them whenever danger threatens. Learn as much as you may by heart, and when the danger is past, rewrite your book. For this reason, if any die, destroy their book if they have not been able to, for, if it be found nd, 'tis clear proof against them. "Ye may not be a Witch alone"; so all their friends be in danger of the torture. So destroy everything not necessary. If your book be found on you, 'tis clear proof against you. You may be tortured. Keep all thought of the cult from your mind. Say you had bad dreams, that a Devil caused you to write this without your knowledge. Think to yourself, "I Know Nothing. I Remember nothing. I have forgotten all." Drive this into your mind. If the torture be too great to bear, say, "I will confess. I cannot bear this torment. What do you want me to say? Tell me and I will say it." If they try to make you talk of the broth , do not, but if they try to make you speak of impossibilities, such as flying through the air, consorting with the Devil, sacrificing children, or eating men's flesh, say, "I had an evil dream. I was not myself. I was crazed." Not all Magistrates are bad. If there be an excuse, they may show you mercy. If you have confessed aught, deny it afterwards. Say you babbled under the torture; you knew not what you did or said. If you be condemned, fear not. The Brotherhood is powerful. They may help you to escape if you are steadfast. If you betray aught, there is no hope for you, in this life, or in that which is to come. But, 'tis sure, that if steadfast you go to the pyre, drugs will reach you. You will feel naught, and you go but to Death and what lies beyond, the ecstasy of the Goddess. The same with the working Tools. Let them be as ordinary things that anyone may have in their homes. The Pentacles shall be of wax that they may be melted or broken at once. Have no sword unless your rank allows you one. Have no names or signs on anything. Write them on in ink before consecrating them and wash it off at once when finished. Never boast, never threaten, never say you wish ill to anyone. If any speak of the craft, say, "Speak not to me of such, it frightens me, 'tis evil luck to speak of it."