(Lady Bridget's Note: Our coven's initiations are secret and must remain so. However, in the interests of information, this ceremony is here for those of you who would appreciate some kind of format for recognizing when a person's studies have brought them to this level. This comes from a group whose ceremonies have long been published online.)
This ritual is a compilation of Gardnerian, Fairy, and traditional Wiccan sources, and is intended to be used as an initiation for graduates of my training course in Basic Technologies of Witchcraft. While the ritual is powerful enough as it stands, I strongly recommend that it be reserved for people who have been prepared through training at least equivalent to that which I give, or much of the impact may be lost.
Hear the words of the Threefold Goddess, who of old was called Artemis, Astarte, Dianna, Aphrodite, Ceridwen, Isis, Arianrhod, Brigid, Aradia, and many other names:
"Whenever you have need of anything, once in the month, and better it be when the moon is full, you shall assemble in some secret place and adore the spirit of Me who is Queen of all the Wise. She who would learn all sorcery yet has not won its deepest secrets, them I will teach her, in truth, all things as yet unknown. And you shall be free from slavery, and as a sign that you be free you shall be naked in your rites. Sing, feast, dance, make music and love in My presence, for Mine is the ecstasy of the spirit and Mine also is joy on earth. For My law is love unto all beings. Nor do I demand aught of sacrifice, for behold, I am the mother of all things and My love is poured out upon the earth."
The Initiate is left to meditate as the others rise and follow the High Priest/ess into the Circle area and three times around, chanting:
"We all come from the Goddess,
And to her we shall return
Like a drop of rain,
Flowing to the ocean." (repeat)
HIGH PRIEST/ESS takes the Sword from the altar and traces a circle
around the coveners. When he/she returns to the north, he/she kneels
and salutes, saying, "Hail and well come, frosty Spirits of the North.
Lend to us your power and protection this night, that
ALL: (envisioning a wall of dark-green light springing up from the circle) "So mote it be!"
HIGH PRIEST/ESS advances to the east, kneels and salutes, saying,
"Hail and well come, bright Spirits of the East. Lend to us your
power and protection that
ALL: (envisioning a wall of lemon-yellow light springing up from the circle, within the wall of green) "So mote it be!"
HIGH PRIEST/ESS advances to the south, kneels and salutes, saying,
"Hail and well come, fiery Spirits of the South. Lend to us your
power and protection that
ALL: (envisioning a wall of crimson light springing up from the circle, within the walls of green and yellow) "So mote it be!"
HIGH PRIEST/ESS advances to the west, kneels and salutes, saying,
"Hail and well come, tireless Spirits of the West. Lend to us your
power and protection that
ALL: (envisioning a wall of dark blue light springing up from the circle, within the walls of green, yellow, and red) "So mote it be!"
HIGH PRIEST/ESS: "I call upon the Horned God; I call upon the Maiden,
the Mother, and the Crone; I call upon the Spirits of Earth, Air,
Fire, and Water; I call upon the Hosts of the Mighty Dead; and I call
every true Witch within this circle to witness that we are here to
ALL: (envisioning the walls of the circle bending together overhead and flowing together under the floor to form a hemisphere of bright white light) "So mote it be!"
HIGH PRIEST/ESS cuts a gate in the circle, and roughly leads the Initiate to kneel at the edge before the gate, then balances the sword-point over the Initiate's heart (the Initiate raises his or her hands to support the point). "You stand at the edge of a place that is between the worlds, in the presence of the Gods and under the watchful eye of the Mighty Dead. If you go any further, you embark on a path that cannot be safely turned aside before your death. Feel the sharpness of the blade at your breast, and know this in your heart - it would be better for you to throw yourself forward and spill out your life than to enter this circle with fear or falseness in your heart."
INITIATE: "I come with perfect love and perfect trust."
HIGH PRIEST/ESS lays down the sword, lifts the Initiate to his or her feet, and kisses him or her. "Thus are all first brought into the Circle.", then leads the Initiate to the altar and taking up the sword, re-draws the circle over the gateway.
ALL (except the High Priest/ess and the Initiate) begin a quiet "Aum" and sustain it throughout the Five-fold Kiss and the Oaths of Initiation.
HIGH PRIEST/ESS, administering the Five-fold Kiss:
"Blessed are your feet, that have brought you to this place.
Blessed are your knees, that shall kneel at the altars of the Gods.
Blessed is your sex, without which we could not be.
Blessed is your breast, formed in strength and beauty.
Blessed are your lips, which shall speak the Words of Truth.
Are you prepared to take the oath?"
INITIATE: "I am."
HIGH PRIEST/ESS: "Then kneel." Takes the Initiate's Measure. "You who
have from birth been called
INITIATE places his or her left hand on the top of the head and right hand on the soles of the feet. "All between my two hands belongs to the Gods. So mote it be."
ALL others raise the volume of the "Aum" slightly.HIGH PRIEST/ESS: "And do you swear to keep silent all those things that must be kept silent, and to respect that which is taught to you?"
INITIATE: "I willingly swear to keep silent all that must be kept silent, and to respect that which is taught to me. So mote it be."
ALL others raise the volume of the "Aum" a little more.
HIGH PRIEST/ESS: "And by what surety do you swear all of these things?"
INITIATE: "All of these things I do swear, by my mother's womb and my hope of future lives, knowing well that my Measure has been taken in the presence of the Mighty Ones. Should I fail utterly in my oaths, may my powers desert me, and may my own tools turn against me. So mote it be. So mote it be. So mote it be!
ALL yell quickly: "SO MOTE IT BE!"
ALL grab the Initiate quickly and hoist him or her completely into the air (if possible), chanting the Initiate's new name over and over again, as fast as possible, as they carry him or her three times quickly around the circle. When they return to the starting point, they set him or her down face-down and press him or her firmly into the ground.
Gradually, the pressure relents to gentle massage. Through all of this they continue chanting the Initiate's new name, falling off in volume and speed as the pressure relaxes.
HIGH PRIEST/ESS: "Know that the hands that have touched you are the hands of love." Removes the Initiate's blindfold and helps him or her up. "In the Burning Times, when each member of the Coven held the lives of the others in her hand, this would have been kept, and used against you should you endanger others. But in these happier times, love and trust prevail, so take this (hands the Measure to the initiate), keep it or burn it, and be free to go or stay as you please."
HIGH PRIEST/ESS hands the sword to the Initiate, and leads him or
her to the East, where they both kneel. The Initiate salutes, and
the High Priest/ess announces, "Behold, restless Spirits of Water -
I bring before you
ALL (including High Priest/ess and Initiate) join hands in the Circle.
HIGH PRIEST/ESS: "Thank you Spirits of the Mighty Dead, Spirits of the Four Elements, and awesome Lord and Lady for hallowing our circle. Go or stay as you will - our circle is ended."
ALL ground and center, then absorb the power of the Circle and return it to the Earth beneath their feet.
HIGH PRIEST/ESS (after a suitable pause): "Our lovely rite draws to its end. Merry meet, merry part, and merry meet again. Blessed Be!"
ALL: "BLESSED BE!"