Magick and Science: A Wiccan Viewpoint

One of my readers asked this question: “It has been said that the scope of science is limited to the material world. How are people detecting the presence of the supernatural?”

I’ll put this in as few of words that I can: Numerous examples exist of supernatural phenomenon occurring when a coven is doing ritual within a Circle.

However, this becomes somewhat difficult to discuss here. Why? Because of the phrase Wiccans say: “What happens in Circle stays in Circle.”

Still, we can look at these three details:

a)      Science measures energy. Magick is energy. Science could measure energetic phenomenon at some point.

Let’s say a scientist was a coven member. If her fellow coven members would agree, it’s possible that some scientific measurement instruments could be set up and run during Circle. We do not know if these particular instruments would detect* the movement of energy that occurs during a ritual.

* There are various light detectors (or light meters). There are also various forms of light (or energy): light on the visible spectrum, infrared light, gamma rays and more. Different detectors can detect different things.

b)     Science focuses on that which is replicable.

Science focuses on that which occurs and can be repeated (replicable) by others in various laboratories around the world. This sounds valuable as far as it goes. Is the energy raised in Circle going to be absolutely the same from coven to coven? No. It’s not even the same from day to day in the same coven. So, already, we have a “structural” barrier here.

c)      A Wiccan definition of “supernatural” is other than the conventional definition.

To me, casting Circle and doing a ritual is about the movement of natural energy. If a non-witch were to observe what happens in the Circle, that uninformed person would say something like: “I just saw something supernatural …”

However, I would disagree with this person’s statement. The energy raised during a ritual is simply natural.

In summary, magick is energy. Some forms of energy can be detected with various scientific instruments.

Which instruments could “observe” magick created in Circle is likely not fully known.

The other complication is that most covens’ rituals are private. (It’s not like covens are running to colleges and saying, “Hey, measure this!”)


Blessed Be,


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