The 'Gardnerian' Book of Shadows

To Help the Sick

(1953)

[1] Ever remember the promise of the goddess, "For ecstasy is mine and joy on earth" so let there ever be joy in your heart. Greet people with joy, be glad to see them. If times be hard, think, "It might have been worse. I at least have known the joys of the Sabbath, and I will know them again." Think of the grandeur, beauty, and Poetry of the rites, of the loved ones you meet through them. If you dwell on this inner joy, your health will be better. You must try to banish all fear, for it will really touch you. It may hurt your body, but your soul is beyond it all.

[2] And ever remember, that if you help others it makes you forget your own woes. And if another be in pain, do what you may to distract his attention from it. Do not say "You have no pain," but if you may, administer the drugs which sooth as well as those that cure. But ever strive to make them believe they are getting better. Install into them happy thoughts. If you can only get this into his inner mind so that it be always believed.

[3] To this end it is not wrong to let people think that we of the cult have more power than we have. For the truth is that if they believe we have more power than we really possess, we do really possess these powers, insomuch we can do good to them.

[4] You must try to find out about people. If you tell a slightly sick man, "You are looking better. You will soon be well," he will feel better, but if he is really ill, or in pain, his Knowledge that he is in pain will cause him to doubt your words in future. But if you give him one of the drugs and then say, "The pain is growing less. Soon it will be gone," because the pain goes, the next time you say, "The pain is going," he will believe you and the pain will really get less. But you must ever say so with conviction, and this conviction must come from your believing it yourself, because you yourself know that if you can fix his mind so that he believes you, it is true.

[5] 'Tis often better to look exactly between their eyes, looking as if your eyes pierced their heads, opening your eyes as wide as you may and never blink. This continued gazing oft causes the patient to grow sleepy. If they show signs of this, say "You are growing sleepy. You will sleep, you are tired. Sleep. Your eyes grow tired. Sleep." If they close their eyes, say "Your eyes close, you are tired, you cannot open your eyes." If they cannot, say "Your arms are tired, you cannot raise them." If they cannot, say "I am master of your mind. You must ever believe what I tell you. When I look like this into your eyes you will sleep and be subject to my will," then tell them they will sleep and wake up refreshed, feeling better. Continue this with soothing and healing drugs, and try to infuse into them the feeling of ecstasy that you feel at the Sabbath. They cannot feel it in full, but you can command them to feel what is in your own mind, and try to concentrate on this ecstasy. I f you may safely tell that you are of the Cult, your task may be easier. And it were well to command them to know it only with their sleeping mind, and forget it, or to be at least unable to tell anyone about it when awake. A good way is to command them that, if they are ever questioned about Witchcraft or Witches, to immediately fall asleep.

[6] Ever remember if tempted to admit or boast of belonging to the cult you be endangering your brothers, for though now the fires of persecution may have died down, who knows when they may be revived? Many priests have knowledge of our secrets, and they well know that, though much religious bigotry has calmed down, many people would wish to join our cult. And if the truth were known of its joys, the Churches would lose power, so if we take many recruits, we may loose the fires of persecution against us a gain. So ever keep the secrets.

[7] Think joy, think love, try to help others and bring joy into their lives. Children are naturally easier to influence than grown people. Ever strive to work through people's existing beliefs. For instance, more than half of the world believe in amulets. An ordinary stone is not an amulet but if it hath a natural hole in it, it must be something unusual, so if the patient hath this belief give him one. But first carry it next your skin for a few days, forcing your will into it, to cure pain, to feel s safe, or against their particular fear, and this amulet may keep imposing your will when you are absent. The masters of talismans knew this full well when they say they must be made in a circle, to avoid distraction, by someone whose mind is on the subject of the work.

[8] But keep your own mind happy. Remember the Words of the Goddess: "I give unimaginable joys on Earth, certainty, not faith, while in life, and upon death, peace unutterable, rest, and ecstasy, and the promise that you will return again." In the old days many of us went to the flames laughing and singing, and so we may again. We may have joy in life and beauty, and peace and Death and the promise of return.

[9] The Bible speaks sooth, "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine but a broken spirit breaketh the bones." But you may not have a merry heart. Perchance you were born under an evil star. I think that the effects of the stars are overestimated, but you cannot make a merry heart to order, you say. But you can, in the Cult; there be secret processes by which your will and imagination may be influenced. This process also affects the body, and brings it to joy. Your body is happy, so your mind is happy . You are well because you are happy, and you are happy because you are well.

[10] Prayer may be used with good result if the patient believes it can and will work. Many believe it can, but do not believe their God or saint will help. Prayers to the Goddess help, especially the Amalthean Horn Prayer, as it causes stimulation to the body as well as to the mind.