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Some groups use sexual magic or nudity in ritual, most do not. Gardnerian Wicca, a highly ritualistic British tradition, insists on practitioners being 'skyclad', weather permitting, but others are robed or in street clothes. Kemp believes that physic energy is easier to raise when naked (111).
Gardnerian Wicca uses the `great rite', which is ceremonial intercourse - some groups use actual intercourse, others an acted rite. Actual intercourse is enacted only by existing partners and in private. Some rites include the consumption of the generated fluids in a spiritual/sexual communion reminiscent of the old religions. Kemp reminds us that any intercourse during ritual is not for self-gratification but part of `high magic', which uses the 'creative force of the cosmos' to enact magick, not to fulfil human lust (175).
Mainstream Wicca has abandoned these rites. A ceremonial magickian is more likely to use the power of sex magic.
Wicca does have a sexual rite in which the high priestess plunges the Athame, a ritual knife symbolising a penis, into a chalice of wine symbolising a vagina. In addition, the maypole rite has dancers weaving red (symbolising menstrual blood) and white (symbolising semen) ribbons around a phallic symbol.
These acts remind the Wiccan that all power comes from the correct understanding of 'polarity' - the male/female balance. Kemp recognises that orgies do take place under the umbrella of the occult, but `they are indulged in by groups seeking thrills rather than spiritual enlightenment' (163).
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