Questions and Thoughts: Spells and Curses....

Indigo Rose

What is the difference?
The concept of performing either one of these seems like a violation of the FREE WILL of others.

Just because we are able to do so, should we? What are the moral consequences of doing so?


I think a curse always involves another person, and is meant to affect them in a negative way - and should always be avoided.

A spell can be lots of different things: it can be to protect yourself or your home, or to increase your courage, or whatever. It can be just for yourself, not directing someone else.
Spells can be done without affecting someone's free will but can be tricky so have to be treated with care. Spells should not be done for someone else unless they have agreed to it, and they should not be done to influence someone's behaviour.

It is not so easy to explain it all in short, but I think curses should always be avoided and spells can be done but with care.


Spells run the whole gamut, from protection & healing to trying to influence the lottery. Curses bring something bad, and anyone with morals & a working brain that knows cause and effect consequences knows not to do those. It's also a matter of where the energy is going--negative or positive. Like draws to like, so sending out negative is going to get the same coming back to you one way or another.

If you follow the standard of 'and it harm none' then that helps considerably. I'd only consider doing something against someone in specific situations (usually ones that would also seriously involve legal recourse). Pedophiles, stalkers and abuse situations come to mind. A curse isn't effective in those cases, you have to look at restriction of action against the person, to give the needed protection to the parties being harmed. Technically I wouldn't even consider curses. There are better ways (from a simple shield to actively putting someone 'on ice'). But it has to be thought out ethically I morally as well. Robin Wood has a pagan book of ethics out that actively discusses situations like this.


That's an excellent idea!

"An it harm none" means "if it harm none" (ME)* & goes back a long way. I am currently doing spells at the requests of others; I was wondering what the results would be if I were to ask for a spell-exchange on this board. I am doing it on the MysticWicks board, & so far everyone has been lovely & supportive. I am only interested in helping people; if someone came along with something that went against my ethics, I would refuse & if money were involved, I'd refund them.

*Middle English


I'll do spells, but I really don't like to do them for other people. I encourage someone who asks me to do a spell "for them" to learn how, and do it themselves. I think spells work better when they are cast by the person for whom the work is being done. In my view, it's need based. When I'm in need, the energy of my emotional connexion to that particular need influences the spell, and makes it more likely that it will work. If I were to cast for someone else, I would feel less emotional investiture, therefore, less "Oomph" would go into it. I feel this would, at the very least, reduce the chance of success.
As far as curses go, Uh uh. Nope. No curses from this bird. What goes around comes around. Folk wisdom for everyone. I figure that if someone does something to me that would make me consider cursing them, they'll get their just desserts from the Universe anyway, so I don't have to do anything.
And besides, if it's something like an ego issue, where a percieved "attack" was nothing of the sort, letting the Universe take care of business keeps me out of trouble too.
Real evildoers, however, rapists, abusers, murderers, deserve whatever they get from the laws of Divine retribution.

Indigo Rose

Appreciate the moral code found here.....

Thank you for your responses. I am very impressed with what all of you have said. The reason I inquired is because I am attempting to understand. I am a Christian. However, I have found myself on quite a journey of exploration this past year. I am NO LONGER contented to be TOLD that things are a "SIN" and be set into a mold of judgment on things I know nothing about. I am very disillusioned with Christianity, as it is practiced today. My heart still belongs to Jesus, and I find His teachings in truth.

It has been difficult for me to understand spells and curses, having believed they were of the same vein. Yet, from what I gather here spells are a positive expression with an attempt to bring good outcomes into manifestation. Curses are negative expressions intended for harm and revenge.

Thank you for enlightening me.
Indigo Rose :)

Seed Crystal

Indigo Rose said:
... from what I gather here spells are a positive expression with an attempt to bring good outcomes into manifestation. Curses are negative expressions intended for harm and revenge.

There are other opinions on curses, or more specificially on hexing. It's not necessarily revenge or harm focussed. While many pagans agree (sometimes in knee-jerk fashion) that hexing should be avoided because of great potential for backlash and dubious morality, some pagans consider hexing to be an option (although maybe a risky one). Hexing can include binding someone who does harm to others, or working for their capture, or to render them harmless. Healing can sometimes be a form of hexing; when you work against an infection, you seek the death of harmful micro-organisms, not just the increased health of the one to be healed.

Spells are not necessarily seeking good or evil, or to be judged a "spell" based on the result; they are more a mode of working magick. An ill considered spell for a good outcome could invite a bad one; for example, a spell to get a specific job may land you in a bad position, deprive the one it really would have been good for of it, or deprive you of the best opportunity which arrived a bit later...

However I think educated neopagans, witches and wiccans generally agree a magick worker (or anyone) bears responsibility for their actions and choices. Most would agree that violating another's rights to self-determination is wrong and not harmless to anyone involved. Many agree in principle with some understanding of "if it harms none, do what you will" and "love is the whole of the law", however some people are more thoughtful and aware of what this might mean than others; and the aware and thoughtful ones are NOT necessarily those who avoid ANY magick.


That is totally true--just as we're responsible for our actions in the physical world, everyone who practices magic needs to be aware that they are responsible for all reprucussions and reactions, actions, and results that occur from what spellwork they do. You have to step up and take the consequences if something goes wrong or unintended, there's no free pass. The ethics and morality involved would stop anyone of consequence from doing revenge or vengence work (with or without good cause!), it's not up to us to play judge and jury. Beginners often ignore this part and they do get backlash because of it.

We are responsible for the results, so that makes it very important to think things through, to make sure the 'harm none' is added (AND meant!), and to consider before doing anything that would involve another. Technically you're supposed to either ask permission from them before doing anything, or to do it ONLY because they asked you to help them with something. Typically this would be something like finding a lost item, helping with self esteem, helping self confidence (such as during a job interview), etc.

You'll get no love spells from me, no vengence stuff for any reason, no 'this and that' frivolous stuff expecially if it doesn't feel right. A good rule of thumb when working with/for/to others (as in healing) would be if they are ok with it if you ask them to their face, then it's ok to go ahead. However, you do need to ask, and always keep in mind that your work connects you to what happens, so it's not something to be done blithely.


I personally wouldn't consider a "Curse" to be a "Hex". In my opinion, the two are different, but that's just how I look at it. Hexing is, to me, the grey area. That would include a truly necessary binding, or a "Chill Out", in the case of a sincerely dangerous person who had eluded all forms of mundane action (restraining orders, law enforcement, etc) or any form of "Go Away" magick. This includes blessing someone out of your life, although it's a nice way of doing it. Beneficial hexing in the course of healings, as was mentioned by someone else, is not something I would consider off limits. I have no compunction against hexing cancer cells, or diseases, in order to kill them. I've done this, so I guess I'm guilty as charged of "Hexing".
What I would consider an actual curse would be something along the lines of ~ "May So and So have nothing but trouble and misery for (whatever I thought they did) may they go bald and fall down the stairs..." bla, bla.
That's a curse to me. Which I will not do.