Let’s begin with The Wiccan Rede … many individuals will quote The Rede as the basis for all Witches ethics, however not all Witches follow The Rede and many don’t even acknowledge it as part of their practice or spirituality. The Wiccan Rede (or The
As Witch, Wiccan or otherwise, I should “Know Thyself” and be true to whomever it is I am while accepting full responsibility for what I say and do without shifting blame to someone or something else. I do not disrespect my magick or disregard my Craft by relinquishing responsibility for the work and effort it required, even when I decide to practice malevolent magick. I own it. This holds true when considering my word, oaths, pledges, and vows made to the living, Beloved Dead, or my gods. Words hold power and should be treated as such. Breaking my word, a sworn oath, solemn pledge or vow holds consequences and as Witch I am aware and recognize these consequences may not be pleasant and may be detrimental to my own growth.
Mistakenly individuals will insist that every Witch should remember The Threefold Law, which I will suggest is NOT a Wiccan tenet. For a more detail discussion on this you should read Tenets of Wicca: Understanding The Law of Return. The concept of a Threefold Law, while is not Wiccan, is based on Newton’s Third Law of Motion:
“When one body exerts a force on a second body, the second body simultaneously exerts a force equal in magnitude and opposite in direction to that of the first body.”
There is a belief that a Witch should always gain consent before casting a spell or doing magickal workings on behalf of another and some even suggest that magick should never be used against or to control another individual because in doing so the Witch changes the course of that person’s life. While I understand that no one can determine the best course to take except the one taking it, sometimes that individual may be unable to make a decision for themselves, leaving the responsibility to someone else and other times it may be desired or even warranted for the greater good for another party to not only make an uncomfortable decision, but to enforce that course of action even if it is one the individual may not have made for themselves. With great power comes great responsibility and sometimes because I can do something, I should. Our world is such a complex place with so many different intentions, desires, and agendas swirling in the ethers around us, that no one set of rules, morals, or laws fit every circumstance and as Witch you may be called to act when others cannot. Sometimes it may be unpleasant and messy and with the possibility with uncomfortable circumstances, but that is part of being Witch and not everyone is meant to wear that pointed hat.
This does not mean that every Witch is motivated by altruism. Not every spell cast or every magickal working is for the benefit of humanity or for “the greatest good for all”; many times a Witch will casts a spell for their own benefit and this is perfectly acceptable. A Witch who cannot witch for themselves has no business doing so for others. If I am unable or unwilling to use magick to create a better life experience for myself then why would anyone else trust that I had the skill, knowledge, wisdom, or tools to do so for someone else? Physician, heal thyself!
This does not mean that I should not do the mundane work required to change my reality, but rather that I understand the nature of magick and Witchcraft and that I use my Craft to aid me in creating the change i desire to experience. It is only when the Witch stops working mundanely and relies solely on magick to change their reality that brings into question their personal ethics.