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Thread: Ask A Wiccan

  1. #61
    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: Ask A Wiccan

    Quote Originally Posted by Autumn_Phoenix View Post
    I've been reading Scott Cunningham's "Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner". I *think* I understand that one can be Wiccan and not practice what witchcraft, in much the same way that not all who practice witchcraft are Wiccan. Are the rites and rituals observed during Esbats and Sabbats considered witchcraft?


    It depends on what one considers witchcraft and what one considers Wicca. I think that Gardner, the person that established Wicca would very much disagree with the idea of a (what we would call) Wiccan not being a witch. And personally I agree with him. I think the idea the idea that Wicca is not a form of witchcraft is false. In fact, for much of its history, Wicca was called The Craft by its practitioners and its practitioners were called Witches and not Wiccans.

    Once upon a time, I would have been quite open minded on this and have said "sure, whatever"..but I've steadily gotten more objective over the years and found myself being more critical of how people use terminology. For a long time we had a "You're not a Wiccan" thread over the great "what is or is not Wiccan debate" (a debate that has been going on for years), and while I take a pretty "big tent" stance on what Wicca is, at some point in the divergence of one's beliefs and practices they become something else. I am now something else other than Wiccan because my beliefs and practices diverged from both the tradition I was initiated in to and the eclectic path I began before that.

    A minimum requirement to be Wiccan in my estimation includes three things--a devotional duotheism (whether it might be a literal duotheism, a figureative duotheism as part of a larger pantheism, a duotheism based in soft polytheism, etc), an reconciliation of the Rede and the Law of Three as a statement on ethics and behavior, and a more-or-less traditional ritual cycle centered around the mythology of the Wheel of the Year. And it is here, in #3 that we have the witchcraft problem--the traditional Wiccan ritual format is a practice of witchcraft.

    Witchcraft is a systematic set of magical practices and magic is the art and science of using one's will to bring about change, then I can't even imagine why this is up for debate (except that people have issues with the word "witch"). And, as a system of practices using will to create change, if Wicca isn't a form of witchcraft, then I don't know what it is. Certainly Wicca isn't all of witchcraft any more than witchcraft is all of Wicca. But. The very basics of Wiccan ritual are magic, are witchcraft--casting a circle, calling quarters, invoking gods, raising and releasing energy for a specific goal...

    Can you be Wiccan and not practice witchcraft? People claim to do so all the time...but it seems to me that it misses the point of why Wicca was developed and how Wicca works as a method of personal transformation.

    ...so, in a round about way, (IMO) you can celebrate the esbats and Sabbats in ritual without the magic, without it being witchcraft--but then its not Wicca, its just Wiccan-flavored devotional eclectic Paganism.
    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

    "We are the offspring of history, and must establish our own paths in this most diverse and interesting of conceivable universes--one indifferent to our suffering, and therefore offering us maximal freedom to thrive, or to fail, in our own chosen way."
    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

    Pagan Devotionals, because the wind and the rain is our Bible

  2. #62

    Re: Ask A Wiccan

    ...so, in a round about way, (IMO) you can celebrate the esbats and Sabbats in ritual without the magic, without it being witchcraft--but then its not Wicca, its just Wiccan-flavored devotional eclectic Paganism.
    Hence the "I think" part of my question...lol. I'm finding that the more I *think* I know, the more I realize how much I have to learn. And when you put it that way, it makes perfect sense. Without the magic, then why Wicca at all? I'm barely starting to scratch this surface.
    Last edited by thalassa; 21 Nov 2014 at 15:02.

  3. #63
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    Re: Ask A Wiccan

    hello people! i m not sure this is the right thread i hope someone will guide me if i m not in the right place I need help, i have lost ALL inspiration, i don't seem to get happiness from my job i really need a great big shift. Althought i know i should make changes i m not sure what changes i should make. if i know what the right direction is i can ask for help or work towards that direction but (to make a long story short) who should i ask for inspiration? (deity or other) i have tried meditation but nothing comes to mind.. has anyone done/asked for something similar? thank you in advance!!

  4. #64
    Member gelman66's Avatar
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    Re: Ask A Wiccan

    Wow interesting, Thalassa. I'm learning a lot just hanging out on this forum and reading

  5. #65
    Moderator Azvanna's Avatar
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    Re: Ask A Wiccan

    Quote Originally Posted by evangelia View Post
    hello people! i m not sure this is the right thread i hope someone will guide me if i m not in the right place I need help, i have lost ALL inspiration, i don't seem to get happiness from my job i really need a great big shift. Althought i know i should make changes i m not sure what changes i should make. if i know what the right direction is i can ask for help or work towards that direction but (to make a long story short) who should i ask for inspiration? (deity or other) i have tried meditation but nothing comes to mind.. has anyone done/asked for something similar? thank you in advance!!
    Hi evangelia. Have you ever tried the Celtic Cross tarot spread? I have tried this twice now and both times have received great results. It took a bit of patience to learn how to read the cards, but it was well worth it. I just used a deck of inspiration cards I had at home that had single words on them. http://www.biddytarot.com/how-to-rea...-tarot-spread/

    It's my belief that tarot unlocks your subconscious fears and desires. If you trust that the right cards will come up, your subconscious will be able to apply meaning to each of the cards and you will gain better understanding of what your true self is trying to achieve.

  6. #66
    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    “You have never answered but you did not need to. If I stand at the ocean I can hear you with your thousand voices. Sometimes you shout, hilarious laughter that taunts all questions. Other nights you are silent as death, a mirror in which the stars show themselves. Then I think you want to tell me something, but you never do. Of course I know I have written letters to no-one. But what if I find a trident tomorrow?" ~~Letters to Poseidon, Cees Nooteboom

    “We still carry this primal relationship to the Earth within our consciousness, even if we have long forgotten it. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the Earth. It is a felt reverence for all that exists. Once we bring this foundational quality into our consciousness, we will be able to respond to our present man-made crisis from a place of balance, in which our actions will be grounded in an attitude of respect for all of life. This is the nature of real sustainability.”
    ~~Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

    "We are the offspring of history, and must establish our own paths in this most diverse and interesting of conceivable universes--one indifferent to our suffering, and therefore offering us maximal freedom to thrive, or to fail, in our own chosen way."
    ~~Stephen Jay Gould, Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History

    "Humans are not rational creatures. Now, logic and rationality are very helpful tools, but there’s also a place for embracing our subjectivity and thinking symbolically. Sometimes what our so-called higher thinking can’t or won’t see, our older, more primitive intuition will." John Beckett

    Pagan Devotionals, because the wind and the rain is our Bible

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