The Dictionary of Wiccan Terms


Gardnerians: Witches initiated by (or stemming from those initiated by) Gerald Gardner or one of his High Priestesses. There are also many witches today who practice the Gardnerian system but whose initiation does not ultimately derive from Gardner's coven, and it would be sectarian not to call them Gardnerians.

Geopathic Stress: Stress that is created by subtle emanations and energy disturbances from underground water, power lines, and negative earth energy lines (ley lines). Geopathic stress runs through the earth and can affect or pollute people and buildings. It contributes to dis-ease of all kinds.

Glamoury: In folklore witches learned the art of glamoury, or magical illusion, from faeries. Basically, glamoury changes a person's aura in small ways to create a temporary energy shift, often to bolster personal energy or project a certain "air" such as confidence or trust.

Gleed: A burning coal or ember.

Glory: In art, a halo or nimbus, especially one surrounding the whole figure (as of Christ) and shaped as a conventionalized aura.

Glyph: A design depicting a principle or concept.

Gnome: The traditional name for and Elemental (q.v) spirit of the nature of the Earth element.

Goal, The: See Intent.

God:The masculine aspect of the Life Force, the Divine, the One, the Whole, The Order of the Universe, or whatever you want to call it. Known by thousands of proper names, and also defined by such terms as Bright Lord, Dark Lord, Horned One, Great Stag, Green Man, Oak King, Holly King, etc. ² Generally, in Wicca, the God is the male principle; the perfect compliment to the Goddess. He's often identified with the sun; with deserts and forests, and with wild animals. Some see him as the Lord of Death and Resurrection. In the eight Sabbats the Wiccans celebrate His birth, maturity, union with the Goddess, and His death. The God is not to be confused with the common Christian conception of 'God'. ³The male personification of Deity. In Wicca, His most celebrated aspect is the Horned God of the Wild.

Goddess:The feminine aspect of the Life Force, the Divine, the Whole, The Order of the Universe, or whatever you want to call it. Known by thousands of proper names, and also defined by such terms as The Lady and Maiden, Mother or Crone. ²There are as many definitions of the Goddess as there are Wiccans. Generally, She's seen as the creatress of the universe; the unfaltering, ultimate source of fertility, wisdom, love, compassion, healing and power. Often associated with the Moon, the seas and the Earth in Wiccan thought, the Goddess has been worshiped in many religions across the globe and throughout time. ³The female personification of Deity. In Wicca, Her most celebrated aspects are the Triple Goddess of the Moon, and the Earth Mother.

God/dess: A way of writing a term for the Divine being which represents both male and female attributes.

Golden Dawn: An occult Order founded in London in 1887 by three Rosicrucians, which became a major influence in Western ritual magick. Its rituals (partly written by the poet W.B. Yeats, who was a prominent member) are basically Cabalistic, with elements of the Chaldean Oracles, the Egyptian Book of the Dead and Blake's Prophetic Books. They were later published in full, under the title The Golden Dawn, by Israel Regardie.

Grail: From ancient traditions, especially the Celtic and European, this is a magickal cup, cauldron, or horn which contains healing elixir and the water of life. In the Christian tradition, it was the cup which was used at the last supper, and which caught the blood of Christ at the crucifixion.

Great Rite: A ritual act of sexual intercourse. This may be actual or symbolic, the latter involving the thrusting of the athame into the chalice. The purpose is to merge or balance the masculine and feminine polarities.² In Wicca, the major ritual of male-female polarity, which is also the third-degree initiation rite. It can be either symbolic, in the presence of the coven, or 'actual' - i.e., involving intercourse - in which case it is always conducted in private. In our tradition, only a married couple or established lovers may perform the 'actual' Great Rite together.

Greater Sabbats: See Sabbats.

Gridding: The placing of crystals around a building, person, or room for protection or enhancement of energies.

Grimoire: This originally referred to old textbooks of European magick written between the 17th and 18th centuries. These books contained information on spells, divinations, charms, recipes, etc. The name may have been a derivative of a Latin word for magick or a Norse term, grima, meaning specter. Today a grimoire is considered a collection of herbals, spells, rituals, and other useful magickal information. ² A magickal workbook containing ritual information, formulae, magickal properties of natural objects and preparation of ritual equipment. Many of these works include "catalogues of spirits." The most famous of the old Grimoire is probably "The Key of Solomon". Most first appeared in the 16th and 17th centuries, though they may be far older and contain traces of Roman, Greek, Babylonian, late Egyptian and Sumerian rites. ³ A (usually mediaeval) book or 'grammar' of magickal procedures. The most famous is The Greater Key of Solomon the King, generally known as The Key of Solomon.(4) An older term used to describe a collection of spells and other folk magicks, often called a Book of Shadows today.

Grounding: Creating a sound connection between oneself and the planet Earth that allows excess and out-of-balance energies to flow from the body. A means of calming energy and dispersing it into the earth. An especially good practice for jittery people is to sit up against a large tree, and allow their nervous energy to flow into the roots below them. Grounding is a way to compose one's mind and spirit. ²Psychically reinforcing one's connections with the Earth, by reopening an energy channel between your aura and the Earth.

Grounding Cord: A vibratory energetic cord that hooks into the earth and holds the etheric bodies and the soul in incarnation.

Grove: An organized group of Pagans. In Witchcraft, a congregation is sometimes called the Outer Grove to distinguish it from the Coven, which is composed of priestesses, priests, and those studying for the priesthood.

Guardians: An alternative name for the four elements, the four directions and/or the four watchtowers. The term is also used to describe angelic beings which stand watch in these prescribed areas. It comes from the belief that the elements have at least symbolic power to protect against negative influences approaching from their quarter of influence.

A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, Y, Z