1. Never assume that you are invited to a ritual or a nonpublic
gathering just because your friend is invited. Have your friend call
the group doing the event and ASK! (or call yourself).
2. When participating in a ritual led by a group of which you are
not a member, ask ahead of time what will be done. Should there be
something in the explanation, or in the set-up of the ritual area which
bothers you, just quietly don't participate in the ritual.
3. Ask the person(s) officiating at a ritual before you place
anything in the ritual area; wear clothing or tools which might be
considered unusual; or add private energy workings to the ritual being
4. Never just walk out of a cast ritual circle. Ask someone in the
group sponsering the ritual to cut you a door if you really and truly
absolutely have to leave.
5. Don't make comments on the ritual, its leaders or the amount or
quality of the energy raised during the ritual unless such opinions are
asked for by the leaders. Save it for your friends, privately, after
the ritual is over.
6. Vegetarians, Vegans, Strict Carnivores, Diabetics, and any
others with very strong food preferences: no one minds your asking
quietly and politely "Which dishes have meat (sugar, spices, hot
pepper, etc.) in them?" When planning a meal for mixed Pagan/Wiccan
groups, it is strongly suggested that at least some of the dishes be
vegetarian, sugar-free, relatively non-spicy etc. At all times, within
and without the ritual context, always provide an alternative to
7. While many people have become far less secretive about their
membership in a Pagan group, it is never, EVER, permissible to "blow
someone’s cover". Do not ever call a friend or acquaintance by
their Pagan name or mention their membership in a mundane situation. It
is also bad manners - and a symptom of social climbing - to call an
individual by his/her mundane name in a Pagan situation. It always
reminds me of an extra calling John Wayne "The Duke" at a local bar.
8. Whether you drink, take drugs or indulge in other similar behavior is completely your own business.
It is always wrong to urge such behavior on any other individual. The
majority of serious Pagan groups absolutely do NOT allow anyone under
the influence of drugs or alcohol to participate in ritual. Do not be
offended of you are turned away for this reason. If you are taking a
psycho-active drug for a medical reason it is very wise to check with
the ritual elder(s) so they will understand and can advise you if they
feel the ritual might be harmful to you.
9. Just because most Pagans/Wiccans are under 40 and in reasonably
good physical condition, never assume that everyone is. Rituals and
gatherings should be planned so that those with physical problems are
not barred totally from participation. Particularly in ritual, be aware
that many more people than you might think are "mobility disabled."
Group ritual should take place in an accessible area and some thought
should be given to designating a safe place for those not taking part
in dancing to stand or sit. Please be alert to anyone to whom help
would be welcome. Help them to find a campsite which minimizes walking
- to the ritual area, to the privys, to the eating area - whatever.
Help them pitch their camp. Don't make them feel unwelcome - most
handicapped people have worked extra hard on their magickal skills and
may be able to add a great deal to the power in ritual and to the
success of the gathering.
10. When at any sort of gathering, please be thoughtful.
Particularly please observe true quiet after midnight. No one minds if
you and others want to stay up all night talking or whatever. Everyone
else minds a great deal if you stay up talking and laughing loudly
and/or drumming. Thoise hosting a gathering should take the
responsibility of keeping the noise level very low in at least some of
the sleeping areas - and designating it as a quiet area.
11. Do not allow yourself to get the idea that you know the One
True, Right and Only Path! Even if you really do have the conviction
that what someone else is doing is "wrong", "incorrect", "Left-hand
path" or whatever, just don't talk about it. It is perfectly
permissible to refrain from participating in the activities of those
with whom you cannot feel comfortable. It is not acceptable to express the idea that they "shouldn't" be doing it. This is not to say that if
you know of criminal behavior on the part of a so-called Pagan/Wiccan
group you should not report it. We must also be responsible for
cleaning up our own act.
Paganism is glorified by its diversity. Please do not allow
yourself to express judgment by categories. Whether or not you like or
dislike blacks, Indians, Homosexuals, women, men, or whatever, keep it
to yourself! If you really and truly cannot feel comfortable taking
part in a ritual which isn't conducted according to the tradition you
follow or if you cannot be pleasant in company mixed with groups you
disapprove of, please just stay home.