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Sable Aradia and The Witch’s Eight Paths of Power

Every so often I like to feature a friend and college here at my Pagansquare Blog. This time, it's Sable Aradia and her new book. We got to chatting about how there is some cross over between The Witch's Eight Paths of Power and my own Gates of Witchcraft, so I thought she would be an excellent resource to showcase for my own readers. I hope you enjoy. - Christopher 


This is your first book, isn’t it? Congratulations! I know that getting your first book out can be quite a challenge.

SA: Thank you!

What made you decide to write this book?

SA: I saw that there were no shortage of Wicca 101 books, but a vocal complaint I’d been hearing (and feeling) for a few years was the limited options for more advanced practitioners. It was like after a certain level you simply weren’t allowed to read about the Craft anymore. I guess I wrote the book I wanted to read

I think that's the way to go. I always say I write the books i wished i had when i was training, and take what I learned and put it into an easier format for others, with my experience, mistakes and successes. What made you decide to approach it in this format?

SA: I was designing workshops for my Wiccan church organization, and I was considering the process of magick. How does it work? Why does it work? What is the theory behind it? Of course, there are many methods to magick and I wasn’t sure what path to take, but then I considered the Eightfold Way. It occurred to me that all magick can trace itself down to at least one of those eight methods. I hear you’ve written a book with a similar approach! Can’t wait to read it!

I did. Mine is the Gates of Witchcraft, and rather than focus upon the methods of magick, I really focused on techniques of trance, taking the trance aspects of the eight fold way, and added four more paths that were also important to me, but not really talked about in the dawn of British Traditional Wicca. I think both will compliment each other quite nicely. What would you say is the book’s greatest asset?

SA: I think that one of my greatest skills is taking things that sound complicated and making them simple. I have more than a hundred experiential exercises in those 80 000 words. It’s really a course outline, intended as a practicum. You learn by doing.


This obviously isn’t intended for beginners. How advanced should you be before you delve into it?

SA: Oh, I wouldn’t say that exactly. I think that you should at least have a basic idea of what Wicca is before you pick it up and work actively with it. But a beginner with that much knowledge who is also using other sources to study Wiccan theology should be able to improve what s/he is getting out of study by reading them together and working with my exercises. I don’t think it’s at all unrealistic to expect that it could take two to five years to work through all the material.

SA: There’s some subject matter in this that could be controversial. In particular, you mention some illegal substances and sex magick in the context of initiation. What made you decide to include these things, and would you say they are necessary to a complete study of the Craft?

SA: Yes I do include these things; and no, I don’t think any of it is necessary. But entheogens (sacred intoxicating plants) have been part of witchcraft and shamanism for a very long time and I think that excluding them is only giving part of the picture. It’s a bit like trying to tell your teenage children that abstinence is the only certain birth control. Of course it is, but do you think that’s going to stop them from experimenting? As the owner of a metaphysical store, I noticed that a lot of younger people in their early twenties in particular experiment with entheogens due to a crossover between modern Paganism and the rave scene. I figured some honest and direct advice was called for. I’m very cautious; I warn people extensively about the consequences (there are several warnings and these are mostly mine, not the publisher’s) and some things I tell people to just stay away from because they are too dangerous. Others I realistically explain. I specifically include flying ointments because there’s a strong resurgence in interest in them at the moment, and cannabis, because it was specifically mentioned by Gerald Gardner in his Book of Shadows.

SA: Likewise, I also deal with Great Rite and sex magick. I believe strongly in the value of initiation by Great Rite for the third degree, but it does have to be a matter of personal choice. I am bisexual, polyamorous and a trans-ally, so I try very hard to include alternate variations from the standard examples and include some resources on where to find more, since space was limited. I also include some basic kink work, because of the use of the Scourge in British Traditional Witchcraft and because of a strong crossover between the Pagan and kink communities. This is all controversial because of the issue of consent culture in the Pagan blogsphere right now, but I think I’ve clarified my stance if anyone cares to check. I wrote a series on it in the Agora blog at the Patheos Pagan channel (

Yes, you’re pretty active in the blogosphere. What else do you write?

SA: I write a column at PaganSquare called “49 Degrees: Canadian Pagan Perspectives” (, and I’m writing a fan-fiction series centered in the D&D Spelljammer Universe. I’ve been offered my own blog at Patheos now and it’s starting up very soon!

Very exciting. Our household is quite a few gamer geeks in it. My husband Steve, and fellow Temple of Witchcraft co-founder wrote the Mutants & Masterminds game and is the owner of Ad Infinitum Games. We could talk gaming all day, but this is my Pagan blog, so let's get back to the magick. Who were some of your influences?

SA: Authors? Well, the first book I ever read on witchcraft was “Practical Candleburning Rituals” by Raymond Buckland. Then “Modern Magick” by Donald Michael Kraig. I guess you’d have to call them the greatest initial influences because I took strongly to their practical, experiential approach. Like most Wiccans exploring in the 80s and 90s I read Scott Cunningham, Laurie Cabot the Farrars. I delved into some Crowley at the same time but you have to understand that I was still a teenager and a lot of it went right over my head. I read Dion Fortune and I explored feminist witchcraft with an author who is now somewhat obscure; her name is Kisma K. Stepanich. In recent years I read Phyllis Curott, Judy Harrow, T. Thorn Coyle, Vivianne Crowley, Issaac Bonewits, Starhawk and you. And I list some of my personal mentors in my dedication.

Thank you. Sound like we were both influenced by some of the same people. Don Kraig was hugely supportive of my writing career and I'm still a bit in shock that he's no longer with us on this plane.

If you had to choose five books that every witch ought to read, which ones would you recommend?

SA: Just five? Not a hope! I’m a geek, I read a lot! I might be able to give you ten:

    1. Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner by Scott Cunningham

    2. The Witch’s Bible by Janet & Stuart Farrar

    3. Evolutionary Witchcraft by T. Thorn Coyle

    4. Triumph of the Moon by Ronald Hutton

    5. Wicca: the Old Religion for the New Millennium by Vivianne Crowley

    6. The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Dr. Joseph Campbell

    7. Deeping Witchcraft by Grey Cat

    8. Wicca Covens by Judy Harrow

    9. The Inner Temple of Witchcraft by Christopher Penzcak, and the Outer Temple of Witchcraft if you want to do public ritual work (yes, I mean that, they were good books, they’re in my bibliography)

    10. The Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett


I love Terry Practhett's Wyrd Sister! I highly agree! Are you working on anything else right now?

SA: Naturally! In the Pagan vein, I’m writing/editing a book on my tradition, Star Sapphire Wicca, and I’m working on a more academic book on Pagan love and sexuality with my partner Lord Redleaf. I’m also toying with a small book on tea leaf reading, and I know there’s room to expand into a full book on each and every one of the Eight Paths, but we’ll see how this one does before I promise that! I’ve also been writing a series of fan-fiction novels and posting them online, called the “Toy Soldier Saga” (

Where can we find you or the book?

SA: If you live in Western Canada, I’ll be doing a book tour so you just might see me locally! You can find me at my website,, and I’m out and about in social media too; you can find links on the website as well. “The Witch’s Eight Paths of Power” is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Indigo, Google Books, your local metaphysical stores and your local Chapters outlets.


Look for The Witch’s Eight Paths of Power: A Complete Course in Magick and Witchcraft by Sable Aradia

(Red Wheel / Weiser) in a store local to you! 


Release Date: US – September 1; Canada – September 16; UK, Australia, New Zealand – September 30

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Christopher Penczak is the co-founder of the Temple of Witchcraft, a system, tradition and religious nonprofit organization focused on magickal education and building community. He is an award winning author of over twenty books, including The Inner Temple of Witchcraft, The Three Rays of Witchcraft and Ascension Magick and a co-owner of Copper Cauldron Publishing, a company dedicated to producing inspirational products of magick and art for the evolution of consciousness for individuals and the world. Based in New England, he travels internationally to teach magick and healing.


  • Mitch Petruk
    Mitch Petruk Thursday, 03 September 2015

    Sable Aradia, I hope the book on Tea Leaf Reading you are "toying" with doesn't contain anything I had told you...things that my mother taught already placed that in your 8 Paths of Power book without my permission and without any mention of my mother!

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