Your browser does not support script
TWV Presents...

Articles/Essays From Pagans

[Show all]

Views: 20,549,071

December 25th. 2017 ...

Men and the Goddess

Pirates and Witches

November 15th. 2017 ...


Pagan Artist Trading Cards

October 14th. 2017 ...

A Little Magickal History

An Open Fire: Healing from Within

September 30th. 2017 ...


August 31st. 2017 ...

The White Goddess: A Seminal Work in the Neo-Wiccan Movement.

Gudrun of the Victory Gods

The Goddess Asherah

July 31st. 2017 ...

Cernunnos: The Darkest Wood in the Moon's Light

Truth and Lies: Finding Wicca

Sin Eaters and Dream Walkers

July 2nd. 2017 ...

Back to Basics Witchcraft: Magical Creativity for Small Living Spaces

On Preconceived Pagan/Wiccan Political Affiliations

A Distant Thunder: Should You Care?

On Cursing: Politics and Ethos

Ares and Athena

July 1st. 2017 ...

Elements of Magic

June 1st. 2017 ...

Herbal Astrology

The Sacred Ego in Mediterranean Magical Traditions

La Santa Muerte... The Stigma and the Strength

The Lady on the Stairs

Nahualli: Traditional Aztec Witchcraft and Totems

April 30th. 2017 ...

Nazis Made Us Change Our Name

Why the Faeries?

The Wheel of the Year in Our Daily Lives

Tarot Talk: the Knight of Pentacles

March 30th. 2017 ...

Magic in Daily Life

The East and West of Wiccan Magick

Tarot Talk: the Ace of Swords

March 3rd. 2017 ...

Finding Balance: Discipline Wedded to Devotion

February 10th. 2017 ...

Understanding the Unseen

Kitchen Magic and Memories

January 10th. 2017 ...

The Gray of 'Tween

Becoming a Sacred Dancer

Little Dog, Big Love

December 9th. 2016 ...

A Child's First Yule

November 10th. 2016 ...

What Exactly Is Witchcraft?

A Witch in the Bible Belt: Questions are Opportunities

On Death and Passing: Compassion Burnout in Healers and Shamans

What I Get from Cooking (And How itís Part of My Path)

October 10th. 2016 ...

Witchcraft from the Outside

September 11th. 2016 ...

Wild Mountain Woman: Landscape Goddess

How Did I Get Here? (My Pagan Journey)

September 3rd. 2016 ...

Rethinking Heaven: What Happens When We Die?

What is Happening in My Psychic Reading?

Natureís Reward

August 12th. 2016 ...

When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch

Hungarian Belief in Fairies

Designing a Pagan Last Will and Testament

Past Midnight

July 13th. 2016 ...

What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses

Magic With A Flick of my Finger

Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum

An Open Mind and Heart

June 13th. 2016 ...

Pollyanna Propaganda: The Distressing Trend of Victim-Blaming in Spirituality

Living a Magickal Life with Fibromyalgia

My Father, My First God

Life is Awesome... and the Flu

May 15th. 2016 ...

Wiccan Spirituality

Faery Guided Journey

How to Bond with the Elements through Magick

Magical Household Cleaning

Working with the Elements

April 2nd. 2016 ...

Becoming Wiccan: What I Never Expected

The Evolution of Thought Forms

The Fear of Witchcraft

Rebirth By Fire: A Love Letter to Mama Maui and Lady Pele

Magic in Sentences

Blowing Bubbles with the Goddess

March 28th. 2016 ...

Revisiting The Spiral

Still Practicing

Spring Has Sprung!

January 22nd. 2016 ...

Coming Out of the Broom Closet

Energy and Karma

Community and Perception

December 20th. 2015 ...

Magia y Wicca

October 24th. 2015 ...

The Dream Eater--A Practical Use of Summoning Talismans

Feeling the Pulse of Autumn

NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.

Article Specs

Article ID: 15180

VoxAcct: 417898

Section: words

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 1,878

Times Read: 3,091

RSS Views: 10,161
Write Your Own Sacred Text

Author: Nimue Brown
Posted: December 2nd. 2012
Times Viewed: 3,091

Iíd like to launch a project; one I hope would then run indefinitely. However, to make it work, I need input from other pagans. Lots of input. Iím aware that many wiccans and Witches keep Books of Shadows, recording rituals, spells and whatever else that resonate. So Iíd like to start by making clear thatís not what I had in mind. This is about the kind of material you could, and hopefully will, choose to make public.

While writing a sacred text could well be a deeply personal journey, there are reasons why this is going to work better if people are willing, and able to share. Write it for your child, or for a child of tradition you havenít met yet. Write it for someone who needs to hear the things youíve learned. Donít write with excessive authority and dogma, the idea is not to produce the next Bible, but to challenge the whole principle that currently underpins how we think about sacred writing.

It is my firm belief that every sacred book in existence was written by humans. Iím perfectly happy to accept the possibility of divine inspiration for any and all of them. What I absolutely do not accept is that any sacred text is the unadorned and unadulterated word of god and that it therefore should be obeyed to the letter.

Weíre moving away from sacred books as literal truths, in more enlightened circles at least, but there are far too many unenlightened circles out there, where human writing, attributed to god, is used to justify horrors. If we could, as a species, acknowledge that there have been many flawed, human involvements in the creation and selection of all Holy books, that might enable us to loosen up a bit and stop killing each other over them. Iím nothing if not an optimist. The assumption of the Ďword of Godí in holy books is the source of a frightening amount of pain, violence and death. If we could only let go of that, and view them as inspired, and written by humans, so much else would change.

My vision is of a world in which it is perfectly normal to write your own sacred book. You might share it online, give copies to friends, and pass it on to your children. It would be no more, or less important than any other sacred book written by a human being. Thereís no restriction to one, either. You might find you have a great deal to say once you get going! Why shouldnít your learning, your vision, your truth be as important as words that came out of a desert several thousands of years ago? Are you any less a child of the gods? Are you any less able to be inspired?

Every religious rite in the world is the consequence of human invention. Again, perhaps divinely inspired, perhaps not. Every prayer, every hymn, every pilgrimage and act of faith, is intrinsically human in origin. We tend to give validity to the practices that have been around the longest, and there are sound pragmatic reasons for taking such a line. Namely that tried and tested things may have the advantage over new stuff. But once, every last word and hand gesture of it was also new stuff, and it only got to be tried and tested, by being tried and tested. Rejecting any spiritual practice on the basis of newness is therefore not entirely sensible.

Again, if we accept the importance of human creativity and human innovation in the mix, we do not have to rely on ancient, out of date and irrelevant spiritual practices. We can make our own. Iíd go further and say that we should make our own. We can draw on inspiration from many sources, but we are here, and now, each of us in situations unique to us. We should not deny our own spirits and our own spiritual power by relying too much on external sources of words, and others who mediate between us and whatever we hold sacred.

So, my suggestion is this: Write your own sacred book. Write it, and, if youíre feeling brave, share it. And if you want to come and tell me about it, drop by and let me know. Iíll happily share links for handmade sacred texts.

Iíve been exploring the possibilities of this for some time now, and itís not as difficult or daunting as the premise may suggest. You simply need a dedicated notebook, and if something occurs to you, add it. Generally, sacred texts include mythic histories of founders and creation, stories that illustrate ethical principles and demonstrate how to behave, wisdom statements, prayers, observations on life and on what works and what doesnít and things to do and not do.

Now, thereís no requirement to have all of these in your book. You might want to take existing stories, myths, etc and include them. This is fine. Reinvention is nothing new. Arguably, the Bible is full of examples of people recycling other peopleís ideas in just this way, and our ancient Pagan ancestors were forever borrowing from each other. However, if a text has a name on it, bring that along too. Itís important, it keeps the writing out of the hands of the gods and reminds us of our own fallible humanity.

If Facebook is anything to go by, many Pagans love finding and sharing little wisdom statements and expressions of love and hope. There is no reason why a sacred text couldnít be a collection of these Ė original, borrowed, or a mix of the two. No source is off limits. Take your favourite Jesus quotes if you want to. Or those from your favourite comedian.

Consider what advice youíd most like to share with the world. What have you learned? What do you know? If this were going to be the one book everybody read, what would it need to say? Itís often said that everyone has a book in them. For some reason this is always assumed to be a work of fiction. It is my firmly held belief that what we could all write, is the book of our own religion.

Iíve been working on a project in this vein for six months at the time of writing this. I add things as they occur to me. Iím a Druid, which means that a lot of what Iím doing is observing things in the natural world and then reflecting on the meaning of the experience. I spend a lot of time learning from what I see Ė recently thatís meant water birds more than anything else, but I know that will change. I reflect on life events and seek lessons in them, and when I think Iíve pinned a thing, I write it down. This helps me focus in my daily practice.

Contemplation is a big part of what I do, and trying to reduce concepts to potent nuggets of insight has added to my spiritual journey. Itís also given me a book of words I can reflect on. In times of stress or uncertainty, flipping through the pages of my own observations is a comfort. I can see that with enough thoughts collected, I might even be able to use them in the same way as I might a set of oracle cards, flitting to a random page in search of inspiration to help me tackle the day.

It would be an option to write an entire book full of useful bits of advice. There doesnít have to be any religion in it at all, technically. In fact, one of my hopes is that a few atheists may become interested and have a go. The deflating of the power of the Ďword of godí in the form of human texts might have some appeal there. A person can have spirituality without belief. They can have ethics, guiding stories and wisdom sayings without needing any gods at all.

For someone who follows a deity, writing a sacred book might be heavily influenced by that experience of the divine. It might be a record of encounters and experiences. For someone whose perspective is more animist, the sacred text might be a reflection of how spirit manifests in life.

There are so many ways in which this could be done. None of them better, or any more right than any other way. There should in fact, be as many unique sacred books as there are people undertaking to write them. Thatís part of the beauty of it. No authority. No monopoly on truth. No power base. It will only work if plenty of us undertake to do it, though. With self-publishing on Lulu and Amazon so easy, with blogs freely available, there are many ways of doing this and sharing it without incurring any personal cost Ė only the dedication of time and love required.

Imagine what it would be like to read a modern, sacred book written by an equally modern fellow pagan. Not a book about how to be a pagan. Not a book about what ancient pagans used to do. A book that is a living, breathing expression of paganism, in just the same way that The Bible works for Christians. And then to read another, completely different, no more right, just as important, and know there are plenty more out there. That would be something!

Imagine writing one of those for yourself. Think about how focusing and empowering it would be. How would it feel to hold in your hands the expression of your beliefs? What would it be like to place that piece of work on your altar? Imagine reading it at rituals. Swapping with a friend so that you can read each otherís testaments. Maybe copying a few choice lines to add to the next edition of yours.

By Ďbookí I do not mean some epic tome requiring half a tree to print it. Your book is precisely as big as it needs to be. Perhaps in three pages youíll have said enough. Perhaps youíll need three hundred. There are no wrong answers here. Just write it. Do it for yourself, and for whatever you hold most sacred. Do it for a wounded world that has been battered by human war for too long. Not only is writing a sacred text and act of personal faith and exploration, it is also deeply political and subversive. Especially if you talk about it.

The more people who write their own book, the more it demonstrates that people can write sacred books, and do, and that a desire to put spiritual experience into words is the only qualification you really need. People wrote the Bible, the Koran, The Talmud, the Vedas, and the Tao Te Ching. How different would the world be if Jesus had written his own book and we had his words, not the things his followers remembered, or wanted him to have said? The more we point to the human element of sacred writing, the more we refuse the authority of older texts. This is a notion that carries a lot of power and potential in it.

As pagans, nature is our book. We say that often. There is no one sacred book. There should be no one sacred book either, because to do that would be to try and assert authority, to claim a monopoly on wisdom, insight and truth that none of us have any right to claim. But if we all write a book, thatís a very different thing. Power is distributed. Wisdom disseminates. We increase our scope to learn from each other, and we tackle head on a thought form that has led to far more violence and cruelty in this world, than bears thinking about.

Sacred books are written by humans. And so, as humans, we have the power to write themÖ not to express superiority, not to control others or to demean what anyone else values, but to express our own ideas.

Copyright: Nimue Brown 2012


Nimue Brown

Location: Gloucester, England


Author's Profile: To learn more about Nimue Brown - Click HERE

Other Articles: Nimue Brown has posted 2 additional articles- View them?

Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE

Email Nimue Brown... (Yes! I have opted to receive invites to Pagan events, groups, and commercial sales)

To send a private message to Nimue Brown ...

Pagan Essays

Pagan Web
8,000 Links

Pagan Groups
Local Covens etc.

80,000 Profiles

Home - TWV Logos - Email US - Privacy
News and Information

Chapters: Pagan/Heathen Basics - Pagan BOOKS - Traditions, Paths & Religions - Popular Pagan Holidays - TV & Movies - Cats of the Craft - Festival Reviews - Festival Tips - White Pages (Resources) - Issues/Concerns - West Memphis 3 - Witch Hunts - Pagan Protection Tips - Healing Planet Earth

Your Voices: Adult Essays - Young Pagan Essays - Pagan Perspectives (On Hold) - WitchWars: Fire in the Craft - Gay Pagan - Pagan Parenting - Military - Pagan Passages

Pagan Music: Pagan Musicians - Bardic Circle at WitchVox - Free Music from TWV

Vox Central: About TWV - Wren: Words, Wrants and Wramblings - Guest Rants - Past Surveys - A Quest for Unity

Weekly Updates: Click HERE for an index of our weekly updates for the past 6 years

W.O.T.W. - World-Wide Networking

Your Town: A Link to YOUR Area Page (The largest listing of Witches, Pagans, Heathens and Wiccans on the Planet)

VoxLinks: The Pagan Web: 8,000 Listings

Your Witchvox Account: Log in Now - Create New Account - Request New Password - Log in Problems

Personal Listings: Pagan Clergy in Your Town - Adult Pagans - Young Pagans - Military Pagans

Events: Circles, Gatherings, Workshops & Festivals

Covens/Groups/Orgs: Local Groups Main Page

Other LOCAL Resources: Local Shops - Regional Sites - Local Notices - Global/National Notices - Local Skills & Services - Local Egroups - Political Freedom Fighters

Pagan Shopping: Online Shops Index - Original Crafters Sites - Auction Sites - Pagan Wholesalers - Pagan Local Shops

Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2018 The Witches' Voice Inc. All rights reserved
Note: Authors & Artists retain the copyright for their work(s) on this website.
Unauthorized reproduction without prior permission is a violation of copyright laws.

Website structure, evolution and php coding by Fritz Jung on a Macintosh G5.

Any and all personal political opinions expressed in the public listing sections (including, but not restricted to, personals, events, groups, shops, Wren’s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witches’ Voice, Inc. TWV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization.

Sponsorship: Visit the Witches' Voice Sponsor Page for info on how you
can help support this Community Resource. Donations ARE Tax Deductible.
The Witches' Voice carries a 501(c)(3) certificate and a Federal Tax ID.

Mail Us: The Witches' Voice Inc., P.O. Box 341018, Tampa, Florida 33694-1018 U.S.A.
Witches, Pagans
of The World

Search Articles

 Current Topic
 Editorial Guide

NOTE: The essay on this page contains the writings and opinions of the listed author(s) and is not necessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.

The Witches' Voice does not verify or attest to the historical accuracy contained in the content of this essay.

All WitchVox essays contain a valid email address, feel free to send your comments, thoughts or concerns directly to the listed author(s).