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Patti Wigington

Reader Mail: Cursing and Hexing

By February 11, 2014

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It is a truth universally acknowledged that if you mention cursing and hexing in a room full of Pagans, you're bound to get some lively discussion. Responses will range from OMG NOOOOOOO to HELLZ YES and everything in between.

A reader asks, "I'm new to studying about Paganism, and I'm looking at a lot of different forms of witchcraft. One thing I don't understand is that some people say it's never okay to hex or curse anyone, but a lot of times I read about curses and hexes in folklore and historical accounts. What if someone's hurting me? Can I protect myself? Am I allowed to curse them? I don't know how this works! Help!"

And of course much like everything else in modern witchcraft and Paganism, it's really going to depend on who you ask: Negative Magic - Is Cursing or Hexing Acceptable?
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March 26, 2012 at 8:10 pm
(1) Byron says:

Magickal self-defense is all well and good…but what ever happened to just whuppin’ somebody’s ass?

March 27, 2012 at 9:33 am
(2) Kat says:

Whuppin’ somebody’s arse is all well and good, but it is not a viable alternative for someone who is against violence. It could also put you in more trouble than just erecting a shield.
Besides it is much easier to use magikal self defense in the first place, to prevent an attack from reaching you. If someone does manage to get thru your shield you have an easier time knowing who it is, and how to deal with them in the future.

March 27, 2012 at 3:40 pm
(3) Oly says:

To answer a threat against and/or In protection of myself, my family, extended family, and property I will curse. I’ll also back it up by opening a can of ‘Whup-Ass’ in this realm as well as others.

April 3, 2012 at 11:17 am
(4) Shino says:

I say it varies extremely. There is a difference between kicking someone ass because they threatened your life or something and doing the same thing just because you don’t like their hair color, eyes, skin, race, religion you’re bored etc… there are some Pagans out there that practice a Warrior role and that might be okay for them. It’s all about intent. To me it’s like saying “Since Xena kicked a lot of butt to protect so and so, that means she’s gonna get whatever she did back times three.” I don’t believe that. But hexes and curses are powerful things, and we should study them out of respect and to dissolve ignorance about them. Actually casting one is a whole other story.

February 26, 2013 at 9:29 am
(5) David Dashifen Kees says:

Non-affiliated plug: check out The Witch’s Shield by Christopher Penczak. It was required reading during my first-degree training. It goes over a lot of magical self-defense techniques.

I’m, frankly, not 100% sure that I believe in magic all the time. I’m at a moment in my life where I’m less confident in it so behind the book idea, I’m not sure I have much to offer other than this: think carefully about what magic and magical defense means to you. That’s the opinion that should matter the most. Others can factor into your own decisions, but Paganism is about being empowered to understand your world in the way that makes sense to you and not necessarily in the way that was written down or explained to you by others.

February 26, 2013 at 9:38 am
(6) David Dashifen Kees says:

Irony: commenting about a not being affiliated with an author and accidentially using an amazon affiliates link in your comment.

The following is the correct link to the book mentioned in my prior comment: The Witch’s Shield.

Blame Mercury retrograde, if that’s your thing :)

February 11, 2014 at 8:38 am
(7) Monica says:

“Abide the Wiccan Rede we must, in perfect love and perfect love and perfect trust…….as long as you HARM NONE, do what you will.” Every wiccan I’ve ever met has been against hexing/cursing. I found a great spell for speeding up karma, but wouldn’t do it because it didn’t discriminate from the caster or intended target. Go with protective magic. Even beating someone’s ass will bring negative karma to you.

February 11, 2014 at 9:02 am
(8) Lawrence Hyde says:

Anyone trained in combat of any stripe knows that a purely defensive strategy will ultimately fail if the opponent is sufficiently determined. However, how we respond to an attack depends on whether we want the person to stop attacking, or whether we feel they should be punished in some way. Targeting the thing that made an effective curse or hex possible–in most cases, a ritual space–for destruction largely removes the attacker’s ability to cause harm without necessarily harming the attacker. Ritual spaces are vulnerable to the transformative effects of fire, whether of the physical variety or the metaphysical. I’ve done this on several occasions when the attacks were unremitting or when a large working was cast that caused harm to many people. It took years for that particular “Black Hat” to re-establish a dedicated place of power… and then I burned that one, too.

February 11, 2014 at 1:52 pm
(9) Bodb says:

Curses are simply too much energy to invest into a person I don’t want around. I’d rather protect myself and my family, say a prayer to (insert your hearth or protector deity here), and load the shotgun with rock salt. When I was in Iraq, I didn’t curse the bad guys I protected myself. Worked then and works now. It also saves me the guilt of using the cocreative forces of the universe to cause intentional harm.

February 12, 2014 at 2:07 am
(10) Lisa says:

I’m of the opinion that if I can sever every tie, magical and non – magical with the person or persons trying to harm me, I will do it. If I can’t, then I will take the times 3 back on me and open a can of whoop ass, be it magical or non – magical. I would rather not have to do that, but I am just as important as they are and I will protect me and mine.

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