This topic came up on a messageboard I frequent and provoked some heated debate. When you first start out practising magic it is almost too tempting not to try a love or attraction spell at some point. And once you have become somewhat established as a witch, from time to time those who know of your craft are going to ask you to perform a love spell for them. Love Spells are probably the most often requested form of magic.
I have done some attraction spells and glamours, but generally don’t do them any more. The reason is not so much about the moral ambiguity of affecting somebody’s free will in such a way (I’m a witch, perhaps even a slightly dark witch and moral ambiguity goes with the territory). No, the reason has more to do with preserving my own health and sanity.
in my younger days I did experiment with attraction spells. You live and learn. Psychologically for me it was bad. I hated the feeling that the person I was with might only be there because of magic I had worked. I also sometimes got paranoid that my own feelings for somebody might be caused by their manipulation of my will.
I prefer to be sure that my feelings and the feelings of those I care about are real, be they happy or sad; a pleasure or a pain.
An online friend of mine quoted the following story which for me highlights some of the psychological reasons for avoiding love spells. (The names and a few details have been changed).
Jack was casting a spell to bring love to him. He knew better, but he was so tired of being alone and so weary of trying to find the truth in lovers’ eyes, he decided to cast a spell to bring love to him. He was okay, because he’d thought it through, and he’d seen in the cards that this spell was okay, because it wasn’t cast on anyone in particular. He gathered his tools and cleansed them, removing any trace of leftovers from previous spells. He spent three days in preparation and reflection, as a true Student should. On the day of his Working, he was calm, focused, and ready. He cast the Circle with care and focus. He said his chant, defined love, and called it to him. Just as he was calling love to himself, releasing the spell, his mind flashed for an instant onto a woman he loved. He didn’t intend this, but even thinking “love” tended to bring her to mind. He hadn’t seen her in a couple of years, but had loved her since they were children. He’d always held back, out of fear, because he didn’t want to lose what he did have with her, which was a deep and abiding friendship of the type that lasts forever even when you are apart.
On that night, Jill had a dream of Jack. She dreamed they were getting married and living happily ever after. She saw the daughter they would have, with her bouncing curls and bright smile. In the dream, she knew he was The One. Now, Jill was a Dreamer, accustomed to seeing meanings in her dreams, but she thought this one was just too weird. She’d always loved Jack, as a friend, but she had never been attracted to him. He just wasn’t her type. So, she shrugged it off, thinking she just missed her old friend. For three nights, she dreamt of him. It was strange, because she had dreamt of the man she would marry all her life. She knew his face, his name, and even had details about when they would meet. She was already in love with the man from her dreams, but Jack’s image was so strong she couldn’t deny there was power behind the dream.
The day after her third dream, a group of young men walked into her workplace. One was beautiful and charming beyond belief, and she was instantly attracted, but she knew without a doubt that he was Trouble! The others held back, letting him make his play, and she didn’t pay much attention. She flirted for a few minutes before shooting him down, and he returned to his friends. She turned her back to them and resumed working. He said to one of them, “You think you can do better? Go for it.” His friend walked up, said, “Hello, beautiful. I made a bet with my friend that you’d see through his bullshit and I’d get farther with you just by saying hi.” Jill was accustomed to this type of silliness, so she decided to play along. She turned around and there stood Jack. Excited to see him, she thew her arms around him. She noticed that he looked different. He’d aged and grown out of the teenage awkwardness that had put her off before. When her shift ended, she went out with the group and soon, she was dating Jack.
The feelings she had for him were overwhelming and beautiful. Strong and not for a moment unreal in any way. She held back, for awhile, because she still remembered there was someone else for her, but eventually she couldn’t deny that her course had changed. She couldn’t be apart from this man, he was her life.
He loved her, treated her like a goddess, and they were happy. But he always held back. There was a secret he couldn’t share,a pain behind his eyes. She asked for help. I talked to him. I discovered that he knew what he’d done and felt the guilt and pain of knowing. He asked if I could undo the damage. I told him that wasn’t his choice.
I talked to Jill. She listened, and she understood why her Path had changed so drastically and abruptly. She thought about it and was surprisingly logical. She said that to undo the spell might break the link that was forged. It might taint every memory of shared love she had. I couldn’t go back and make her the person she was before the spell. I couldn’t get her life back on course. All I could do was bring her pain, because she would lose both of her loves, in the end. She forgave Jack, knowing he never intended this, and loved him, anyway. I believed she made the right choice, because she was right. I could break the link, but I couldn’t go back and make it undone. Now, at least there was honesty between them.
Jack never knew if her decision was influenced by the spell. He never stopped feeling guilty. He wanted the spell broken, so that she could forgive him with an unclouded mind, but decided he’d done enough damage and swore off magic, entirely. Years went by, and he always felt that pain. Jill, on the other hand, had made peace with it. Until he was taken from her a couple of years later. She almost died, too. Still, she didn’t know if undoing the spell would take the pain of his loss, or simply taint her beautiful memories. So, she endured. She lived, for their beautiful daughter, who was better than her brightest dreams. She finally came through to a place where she was almost whole without him.
Jill met John one day when she was preoccupied. She felt drawn to him, but couldn’t place why. She thought, he looks familiar, and went on about her day. She kept bumping into him, though. She asked him his name, finally, and as he spoke it, she began to cry. He thought she was crazy, of course, but they got through that. She got to know him, and she asked why he’d moved to the area. He said, “You’ll never believe it, but I had a dream. The dream said I had to come. It was the only way to make someone important to me very happy. So, I came. I don’t know why, really, I don’t buy into all that hippie crap, but I couldn’t NOT do it.”
He made her happy. He still does. But, sometimes, she still longs for Jack. Missing him taints her life. He is her greatest sorrow.