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Mastering Witchcraft: A Practical Guide for Witches, Warlocks, and Covens Paperback – November 19, 2006

4.2 out of 5 stars 122 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Born in England, Paul Huson received occult training from the Society of the Inner Light and the Order of the Stella Matutina. He has authored Mystical Origins of the Tarot, The Devil?s Picturebook, Mastering Herbalism, How to Test and Develop Your ESP, The Coffee Table Book of Witchcraft and Demonology, and two fiction works, The Keepsake, and The Offering.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Backinprint.com (November 19, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0595420060
  • ISBN-13: 978-0595420063
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (122 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #406,032 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Paul Huson is a British-born author and artist currently living in the United States. In addition to writing books about occultism and witchcraft, he has worked extensively in the film and television industries.

Huson was born on September 19, 1942 in London, England, the son of the author Edward Richard Carl Huson and painter and motion picture costume designer Olga Lehmann. From 1956 through 1959 he attended Leighton Park School, a Quaker school in Berkshire, England; from 1959 through 1963 he studied painting, theatrical design and film at the Slade School of Fine Art, University of London. Concurrently he studied the Western Esoteric Tradition with Dion Fortune's Society of the Inner Light. In 1964 he worked as an assistant to Karlis Osis, Director of Research at the American Society for Psychical Research. In 1965 he studied with the Stella Matutina and Israel Regardie.

Television and Movies:

In 1954 Huson played the part of Edward V, one of the Princes in the Tower, in Laurence Olivier's film of Shakespeare's "Richard III". From 1965 to 1968 Huson worked as an Art Director for BBC Television and Columbia Pictures UK, before moving to the United States. Between 1969 and 1980 he wrote books and scripts for episodic television, then teamed up with scenarist William Bast to write and produce such television series and movies as ''The Colbys'', a spin-off from the Aaron Spelling series ''Dynasty'', ''Tucker's Witch'', ''The Hamptons'', ''Twist of Fate'', ''The Big One: The Great Los Angeles Earthquake'', ''Danielle Steel's 'Secrets"'', ''Power and Beauty'', and ''The Fury Within''.


In 1970 Huson wrote ''Mastering Witchcraft'', followed by a study of tarot symbolism, ''The Devil's Picturebook'' (1971). In 1974 he wrote ''Mastering Herbalism''; and an introduction to parapsychology, '' How to Test and Develop your ESP'' (1975). Two fiction books followed, ''The Keepsake'' (1981), and ''The Offering'' (1984), and a second work on the history of tarot symbolism and tarot reading, ''Mystical Origins of the Tarot'' (2004). He generally illustrates his non-fiction books himself, and has designed a deck of tarot cards based upon his research, ''Dame Fortune's Wheel Tarot'' (2009). He currently lives in Los Angeles with writer and scenarist William Bast, his partner and frequent collaborator.


*Clifton, Chas, ''Her Hidden Children: The Rise of Wicca and Paganism in America'', Lanham, MD: Rowman Altamira, 2006, ISBN 0759102023.
*Clifton, C, & Harvey, G, "The Paganism Reader", New York & London, Routledge, 2004, ISBN 041530352.
*''Contemporary Authors'' (Biography), Thomson Gale, 2004.
*Farrar, Stewart, ''Eight Sabbats for Witches'', WA: Phoenix Publishing, 1988, ISBN 0919345263.
*Freedland, Nat, ''The Occult Explosion'', New York: G.P.Putnams Sons, 1972, ISBN 0399109544.
*Gunther, Max, ''Wall Street and Witchcraft'', New York: B. Geis Associates, 1971.
*Luhrmann, T.M., ''Persuasions of the Witch's Craft'', Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1989, ISBN 0-674-66323-3.
*Valiente, Doreen, ''The Rebirth of Witchcraft'', London: Robert Hale, 1989, ISBN 0-7090-3715-5.
*''Who's Who in Entertainment'', Illinois: Marquis Who's Who, Macmillan, 1988.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
For most of the past four decades, Paul Huson's seminal work "Mastering Witchcraft" has remained in print. That alone should be a testament to its worth on the subject of witchcraft. An early reviewer in the 1970s called it a "genuine vade mecum" (do it yourself guide). The reviewer? Catholic Weekly.

From the opening pages to the resources and bibliography, this book contains much to set your mind thinking and your magic brewing.

Yes, parts of it are dated somewhat (the recitation of "the Lord's Prayer" backwards as a breaking ceremony has fallen much out of use to my knowledge, but back then it was fairly common) and the book is very much Not Politically Correct, which is just fine with me!

It is my firm belief that without this book, it is unlikely that we would have other fine texts such as those by Mike Howard, Nigel Jackson, and others who write on the subject of traditionalist witchcraft.

If you are looking for yet another Wicca 101 book, head over to the Big Ll Publishing Company and find the latest by Ravenwolf. If you are looking for something with substance, you will likely not find anything better than this to begin with.
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Format: Paperback
I see a lot of debate here about "Mastering Witchcraft". That alone is good, because the more homogenized I see Wicca get, the farther I distance myself from it. I own a metaphysical store and give tarot readings for a living. I've been a high priest for over 20 years. This was the first book on witchcraft I ever read, and nothing since even compares to it. Yes, there are flaws - and you have to consider the time in which it was written. The late 60's. People did not have to be politically correct then, and they weren't. Paul Huson took the best information he had, and in step with his times, he presented it in a better way than anyone has since. It is a little arrogant sometimes. He doesn't back away from the dark side of magick or pretend it doesn't exist like a lot of Wiccan writers that followed him. Huson is not writing about Wicca, he is writing about practicing a craft that may or may not be attached to a religion, a crede, or a system of morals. I am not a child. I don't need my magickal instruction sugar-coated. His version of the symbology is used by almost every witch and Wiccan to this day, even thse who decry his "amorality". Huson has done a lot since. "Mastering Herbalism" is one of the best herbals out there - and he has a book on ESP, two books on the Tarot, and a good horror novel from 1979. As far as I know he's still alive. In the years following his books, he did a lot of producing and writing for television. "Family" with Kristy McNichol, et. al, and "James at 15" in the late 70's, "The Colby's" in the 80's (a spin off of "Dynasty"). The man is quite prolific and diverse in his talents...I am glad that someone put together what he did, when he did it because there's nothing like it now.Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
Paul Huson, artist, actor, novelist, screenwriter and authority on Tarot and Mediaeval Magic originally wrote this book in 1969 and it has since established itself as a highly-regarded 'classic' in the field: it is not difficult to see why.

Firstly it is an exposition of Witchcraft in the purely pre-modern sense of that word, as a Craft (Anglo-Saxon 'Craeft' -'Power, Skill, Force') and he comprehensively expounds the technical knowledge and applied methods by which this innate 'Power' can be methodically tapped and projected by the Witch or Warlock for various pragmatic ends. In other words the term Witchcraft here is used in the same archaic sense as one would find it used in say the 17th century astrological works of William Lilly or William Ramesey when they say that the 12th House of the Chart is the 'House of Witchcraft' - they were not referring to a wiccan-style cult or alternative religion but quite simply meant the exercise of magical power to 'bewitch'. It is in this original and authentic sense that Paul Huson's book is a genuine manual of 'Witchcraft', putting aside the modern meanings which have become attached to that word.

The author presents an immensely skilful synthesis of magical lore and techniques from the traditional Magic of the Middle Ages and imparts a very workable body of spells, invocations, astrological herblore, incenses, philtres and image-magic: he draws upon and weaves together elements from the Solomonic cycle of grimoires, the teachings of Cornelius Agrippa, the 'enlinking' techniques using archetypal images used by Giordano Bruno, the use of Cabalistic kamea in arithmantic invocations etc.
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Format: Paperback
Mr Huson is a Genius in my eyes. Mastering Witchcraft has nothing to do with Religious Witchcraft movements, it has nothing to do with Karma or the Three Fold Law, in fact it has nothing to do with the New Age Witchcraft movement of modern times. This book does not hold its punches back, the book is well balanced with both positive and negative magic, what New Agers label as Black and White Magic.

I am a big fan of Mr. Huson's work and enjoy his other books and novels. "The Offering" is a must read for those who want a Horror based on African Macumba (Vodou) magic, laced with Santeria.

But this by far has to be one of my favorite books of all time. While more receant books on Witchcraft have to do with Religion, and Karma, Mastering Witchcraft has to do with the ancient art of Witchcraft, leaving the religion aspect out of it. There is one part of the book though that made me laugh a bit. The "Our Father" backwards. Being Hispanic a Santero, Espiritista and a Brujo I often use the old Padre Nuestro, "Our Father" as is, because in itself it is a very powerful prayer in working Magic as are may Psalms. But besides the Our Father backwards, this is your choice if you use it backwards or not, the book is a must have for all Witches.

Many people ask me if I could recommend an English book on Brujeria as practiced by Hispanics, well this is as close to brujeria as you can get. Many people who gave it a negative are basically Wiccans. I respect Wiccans I just hope that they someday realize that all that is Witchcraft does not make it Wicca. One Wiccan reviewer talked like a Christian when he stated. "The Book tells you that in order to practice Witchcraft you have to sell your soul-- and that the book never tells you to whom.
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