Black, White, and Gray Magick
Your motive for doing a spell determines whether it’s “white” or “black” magick, or somewhere in between. Magick spells can be grouped into three basic categories:
Any spell done to harm someone else is black magick.
Spells and rituals performed for the purpose of connecting with the Divine or to obtain higher knowledge are considered white magick.
Everything else falls into the gray area.
As you might imagine, most magick that witches perform fits in the gray category. This doesn’t mean it’s wrong to do gray magick. Tapping your magickal skills to get a better job or improve your love life is like using any other talent to enhance your situation. As long as you don’t harm someone else in the process, you’re operating in safe territory.
*Note: Some people call themselves “white witches,” meaning they abide by a simple code that instructs them to work for the good of all. White witches believe it’s highly unethical to attempt to manipulate another person or to use magick to interfere with his free will. This kind of manipulation occurs most commonly in love magick, when one person tries to force another’s attentions.
Many witches end a spell or ritual with the words, “This is done for the greatest good and may it harm none.” Because it’s sometimes hard to determine whether what you’re doing is for the good of all concerned, this phrase invites the universe to step in and guide energy to keep it from being misdirected.
Magicians recognize that they may not be able to foresee all possible outcomes of their magick. Human beings are not omniscient, and sometimes good intentions lead to terrible results. By requesting that higher (and wiser) powers direct their magick toward the best possible outcome, witches remove any selfish attachments and desires from their spellworking. The phrase “harm none” also pertains to the person doing the spell and protects the magician from any unwanted ramifications of a spell.
This brief overview is a broad generalization at best. Each witch relies on her inner voice (or conscience, if you will) in determining how she wields magick. There is no cut-and-dried answer to whether anyone is a good or a bad witch. Most witches hope and try to be the best witches—and the best people—they can be.
The Everything Wicca and Witchcraft Book (Everything®)
Alexander, Skye (2008-07-01).