Witchcraft Wisdom

I have been getting festive lately and have seen quite a lot of similarities between buddhism and witchcraft. There’s a new teen TV show on Netflix called Chilling Adventures With Sabrina. So its about a girl who is born from witch blood and a mortal blood, and she is struggling to renounce her worldly life for the dark life of Satan. With her “Dark Baptism” she will gain all sorts of otherworldly powers and immortality, which will in turn give her a more insightful life. With all of this she of course has to leave all her friends, boyfriend, education, career and what-have-you. To her perspective she would like to have both powers and insight on the one hand as well as freedom and “the path of light” of happiness, joy, friendship, success on the other hand. Does all this trigger something in anyone else here? The feeling I relate to is from the path of monastics to become disenchanted, objective, furthering oneself from happiness, and to slow down and end the functions of life itself at the pinnacle. However to the advantage of the dark or renunciate lifestyle I do love to play on the perspectives of being morbid, grotesque, residing in emptiness, and contemplating all things as non-self. I’d love to hear others’ thoughts, thanks!

I thought Satan was Mara whispering promises of immortal power to those who suffer.

From DN33 we offer Sabrina:

Four deeds.
There are deeds that are dark with dark result.
There are deeds that are bright with bright result.
There are deeds that are dark and bright with dark and bright result.
There are neither dark nor bright deeds with neither dark nor bright results, which lead to the end of deeds.

And which shall she choose?

1 Like

Is Satan a character in this teen show? I grew up with a version of Sabrina the Teenage Witch, but I don’t remember a lot of Satan…

1 Like

I’m not sure the pursuit of Nibbana involves so much furthering oneself from happiness as it is simply noting when one is happy and not becoming attached to that feeling lest it become a craving that is ultimately unsatisfying. One of my teachers (a Thai monk) often says to me, “When you are happy, you are happy. When you are unhappy, you are unhappy. That you know. That is your wisdom.”


Yeah Satan is in this one actually, just came out yesterday. Pretty dark show

I guess I’m referring to training the mental power to be able to withstand and not be attached to even the most delectable states of happiness. It’s intuitve to me that the states of happiness will stop being your friend because you don’t play with them, but then again I believe I have a lot of work to do myself

I guess that gets to the point, stay objective and keep pursuing the path with the the least consequences. What about before we’re at that point and may have to follow something dark such as nibbida, asubha, and the like. Those are the dark practices I’m considering

Another point I’d like to bring up that I left out is the word Witch itself and how it has probably arrived from Viccā meaning the higher knowledges and maybe even knowledge in a “magical” sense. Just trying to make all of religion easy and convienent for my small brain, which I don’t know will ever be possible because of all the complexity. Not an endeavor worth pursuing I guess the man himself would say :blush:

May Sīla guide you. :pray:

In the same way, an ethical person, who has fulfilled ethics, has fulfilled a vital condition for right immersion –SN5.168

Thank you. I am trying to figure out the core of the “dark” path, which I’m thinking may not necessarily be full of bad intentions including hatred, revenge, lust, etc. just intense energy like the idol baphomet. It can be used for awakening or transgression maybe? Could Satan just be the one who challenged Brahma?

“Baphomet” is an Old French corruption of the name of “Muhammed”. What powers does he have?

Who is the man?

Are you trying to practice witchcraft, like, in reality, or as part of the Wiccan religion?

You might find an audience of peers in the Tibetan subforums of DharmaWheel. They have chaos magicians, Wiccans, mediums, and the like there.

1 Like

I watched the first two episodes. I might actually end up watching the rest!


I don’t know what I’m talking about in regards to any strict rule of Wicca, it’s all just imaginative and abstract concepts that have intrigued me. I mean Gautama Buddha. We have to gather faith and effort from somewhere, so I like to dabble in mysticism when I’ve heard every Buddhist story 1000 times. Gives a fresh perspective ya mean?

Ah, makes sense. I had read that very wrong the first time, and wasn’t sure what you were saying.

What are you trying to do with your practice of witchcraft? Why are you so interested in left-hand practices?

No one is saying you can’t practice Buddhism and also maintain an interest in Western Esotericism, but I will admit that personally I don’t see a lot of the philosophies promulgated in left-hand path communities as being necessarily conducive to the finding of good spiritual friends who will help you along and encourage you in your practice.

A lot of the left-hand path is about sensuality and enjoying the pleasures of the world at the whim of the will, isn’t it?


I was thinking that the wisdom practices that aren’t so bright and jolly that the Buddha recommends for calming the desires and detaching from the ego could themselves be the “dark practices”. Could sincere practitioners be the ones who were define as these “witches” ex: sitting in one place for extended periods of time, being in charnel grounds, keeping quiet, living in forests. I remember reading of the first impressions of Ajahn mun and Ajahn sao and I kind of take that taboo with a bit of pride if I should say so myself. That’s all I mean, not so much of conjuring spirits and getting revenge

1 Like

It’s mice to see “dark” placed in quotation marks to indicate that the word is being used metaphorically. As conceptual metaphors “light” and “dark” draw on the visual experience of gathering information, learning, and knowledge through the sense of sight. It is not surprising that the “Dark Ages” are associated with a period in which the accumulation of knowledge lessened while the “Enlightenment” is associated with an accumulation of knowledge. Linguistically speaking, light reveals understanding; darkness obscures understanding. If dogs developed a spoken language, instead of saying “I see” when they understood something, they would say “I smell.” In canine metaphorics, the “Dark Ages” would be the “Odorless Ages” and the “Enlightenment” would be the “Age of Smells.”

1 Like

@Westbury08 “trying to figure out the core of the “dark” path”: according to the Chilling Adventures of Sabrina tv series, its core is whether one must trade freedom and morality for power. I would not really recommend the series, as it has numerous graphic murder sacrifices, cannibalism, and lots of teen angst. It’s very loaded with Roman Catholic / Christian satanist mythology.

A more interesting show I have run across is The Good Place which starts with the premise that a person has gotten into the afterlife’s Good Place due to some clerical error… If you watch it, start from Season 1 Episode 1 ::grin::


I love The Good Place.

I would suggest to the OP that comparing the less pleasant renunciatory practices with satanism is not going to be conducive to producing wholesome states of mind.


Do you get anything positive from your ‘dark’ take on the dhamma?

That is certainly a valid comparison, the way you frame it here.

But I don’t think that the television show is a good comparison, IMO, as someone who has also watched it. The witches are clearly somewhat wicked (aside from those who were “roped into it” so-to-speak, like Hilda Spellman), moreso than in the version I nostalgically remember from my childhood, and while this makes for fun TV, I think that the fact that the witches are “detached/freed” from morality and that Buddhadharma practitioners seek to be “detached/freed” from the world is the furthest one can push the metaphor.

That’s just IMO, though.

Whether you consider them “dark” or “light”, these are good things to be considering IMO.