The pseudo-archaic language of the rede has caused confusion within the Wiccan community itself. It is increasingly common for people to misread the Rede to mean "you can do what want only if it doesn't harm anyone." Further confusion is caused by mixing up the Rede with the similar injunction in the Hippocratic Oath to "never do harm to anyone".

Saige has stated the Rede precisely. Wicca is not a religion whose ideal is the mitigation of harm. The Hawaiians state the Rede as follows: "No hurt, no sin."

This is the full poetic version of the Rede.

The Wiccan Rede

Bide the Wiccan Laws ye must,
In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust.
Live and Let live,
Fairly take and fairly give.

Cast the circle thrice about
To keep the evil spirits out.
To bind the spell everytime
Let the spell be spake in rhyme.

Soft of eye and light of touch,
Speak ye little, but listen much.
Deosil go by waxing moon,
Chanting out the Witches' Rune.

Widdershins go by waning moon,
Chanting out the baneful rune.
When the Lady's moon is new,
Kiss the hand to her times two.

When the moon rides at her peak,
Then your heart's desire seek.
Heed the North wind's mighty gale,
Lock the door and drop the sail.

When the wind comes from the South,
Love will kiss thee on the mouth.
When the wind blows from the West,
Departed souls will have no rest.

When the wind blows from the East,
Expect the new and set the feast.
Nine woods in the cauldron go,
Burn them fast and burn them slow.

Elder be the Lady's tree.
Burn it not or cursed you'll be.
When the wheel begins to turn,
Let the Beltane fires burn,

When the wheel turns to Yule,
Light the log; the Horned One rules.
Heed ye flower, bush and Tree,
By the Lady, Blessed Be.

Where the rippling waters go,
Cast a stone and truth you'll know.
When ye have a true need,
Hearken not to other's greed.

With a fool no season spend,
Lest ye be counted as a friend.
Merry meet and merry part,
Bright the cheeks, and warm the heart.

Mind the Three Fold law you should.
Three times bad and three times good.
When misfortune is enow,
Wear thy blue star on thy brow.

True in Love ever be,
Lest thy lover's false to thee.
Eight words the Wiccan Rede fulfill
'An Harm Ye None, Do What Ye Will!


I believe this version was written by Doreen Valiente, though I could be wrong.

LM

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