Truth and Lies: Finding Wicca
Article ID: 15830
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 55
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Posted: July 31st. 2017
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There is a story in all of us. One we may wish to share with the world, whether it be about our first pet, how the death of a loved one affected us, a near-death experience, first love, first heartbreak, how someone changed our lives. The stories are endless. Mine is a religious and spiritual experience.
I suppose I've always been an outsider. I read a lot of books, I rarely ever went outside with other people and I wrote so much that I always had the best story in the class. I was bullied for my differences, though, and bullies are what the antagonists are called in movies. They may not seem like bullies, but it's true. Bullies are what power hungry people are when their power is taken away from them, or they see a threat to their dominance and want to get rid of that threat.
Bullies are scared, so they do what they do best. They make us feel small and vulnerable, diminishing our threat and then, they have no reason to be scared. Bullies are cowardly and daunted. They're afraid of difference and they will do their best to get rid of it.
I was that difference. Everyone else was the same, like robots thinking alike and in unison. The only way to get people to like me was to conform to the way they thought, to play a game… but this game is one where no one can win. It's called ‘society’.
I couldn't do it. I couldn't conform to the way they thought and I didn't want to. I was myself for my whole life and I was disliked for it. I was bullied for it. Why? What did I do wrong? I thought being yourself was prized in society. I really did. Yet, the phrase is just a blanket over the truth to make yourself feel better. The truth is: no one wants you to be yourself. They want you to be who they want you to be.
I went to church once. I was only young but the robotic motions of everyone still both dazzled and frightened me. I couldn't believe this many people would agree with everything one person was saying. Maybe it was because they were in front of this, their voice was powerful and it seemed like they knew what they were saying just because they were high above us. The words were kind, gentle and loving but, for some reason I knew not, I just didn't feel comfortable.
By the time I was ten, I decided I could live a comfortable life as an Agnostic since there was no religion out there for me. Buddhism seemed like a good idea once and, even though it felt so close, it just wasn't right. My cousin was insistent on saying "God loved me, " but that had no impact on me. She turned her views a year later when she turned twelve, the age we start high school in Scotland.
High school: the time where we rediscover ourselves. Where times are meant to be different. For the first few months I attended high school, the times were pretty much the same until my best friend for the max of a year. She was beside me, with me and stood by me all the way. We fell out due to a complicated subject that I'd rather not get in to.
I fell into a depressed state since they took the lowdown, underhanded route and went from friends to bullies. My father had been unfaithful to my mother and I missed a dear friend who moved to a different school due to bullying. Luckily, though, I found a new best friend and we were best friends for a good two years. In this year, though, I was thirteen and I moved with my mother and my father who had somewhat reconciled.
By the time I was fourteen, I had made new friends and found another best friend who shared the same interests I did. She was a Christian; I was an Atheist. She attended a group that started at one point every Wednesday for Christians. I attended a few times because, I will say no lie, I am as curious as the cat if not more curious. Halloween, as I knew it then, rolled around and I found myself wondering what I was going to do with my mother since it was just the two of us. I've always wanted to go somewhere and do something, and it's exactly what we did. I've always believed that the religion finds you before you find the religion and maybe it waits until you're ready.
My mother decided she and I were avoiding the children around the streets on the night. We went to a place called "Auld Reekie" that led tours through haunted undergrounds. My mother and I went for the least scary one, mainly for my benefit as I was fourteen. As we walked through the underground, we soon came to a large temple.
The temple had red chairs aligned next to each other in a circle, a fire crackling in the fireplace beside them and a pentacle on the wall. It wasn't the first time I had laid eyes on such a symbol of a five - pointed star inside a circle but I didn't know what it meant. I recognised the symbol from a booklet we had used but a week or two earlier. I had asked my teacher what it meant and the only things she could think up were negative. Somehow, I didn't feel that way.
I felt a connection with the symbol. A sense of spirituality, tranquility and protection. It felt like a drawing force was attracting me towards the pentacle. The sharp, sudden shock of spirituality came from looking at a simple symbol of a religion knew little about to begin with.
The next day, I researched the beliefs that tied into its representation of a five-pointed star. I found it fascinating how such a simple thing as a five-pointed star inside a circle could have such complex connotations.
Many Wiccans and Neo - Pagans, ( and pagans, as well, that still follow traditional paganism of some sort ) , will desribe the feeling of finding Wicca as "coming home." For me, it was more like finding a place to belong in a religious and spiritual sense as I went from Protestantism to Buddhism and Christianity before I was an Agnostic for nearly five years. It felt like I was wandering around a religious and spiritual plane.
The influence of living in a Protestant household with my Protestant mother is what made me believe I was Protestant for a while. Buddhism and Hinduism would both fall under the umbrella term of paganism if they didn't develop their own names as they are not of Abrahamic origin, yet they both felt, in a spiritual sense, erroneous.
However, I learned the hard way that, just because I am proud of my religious and spiritual beliefs, that I shouldn't flaunt them and wear them all over me for everyone to see. Yet, I've never been one to give in to society's laws of acceptance and I wasn't about to start just because I'm a teenager and the pressure's higher on me than it was when I was a child to conform.
I brought my makeshift Book of Shadows to school a few times, I wrote in it, I drew in it. I made the mistake of telling my English class I was a witch, but I didn't care. Albeit now, I wonder if I was brave or stupid to do such a thing since the representation in media has a negative impact as the reports are usually aggressive and offending to nearly every Wiccan on the planet. Others, with more patience and tolerance, may just brush the whole thing off. The reports are often misguiding and incorrect, i.e., the description of Wiccans as worshippers of the Catholic concept of God's adversary and workers of dark magic.
I was a target of that. I was asked if I sacrificed sheep and lambs and worshipped the Devil. My sarcasm saved me in these situations and it got me noticed. I didn't care much as I didn't care if I was invisible or noticeable. Soon, at fifteen years of age in October, we moved to England.
I made the same mistake here. I told people; it got me bullied but it soon died to small jokes. If I show no reaction, it soon becomes old news. I don't regret them because I wouldn't have learned if I hadn't done that. Sadly, I made the same mistake twice. However, I did tell my friends not to tell anyone, so the people behind us at the time must have heard something.
However, I moved back to Scotland to continue my education. I didn't make the same mistake here. I told them I was Wiccan and that was that. My boyfriend at the time and his best friend were the only ones who knew and I was happy that way. I then returned to England after four months because of the long, complicated story I'd rather not get into.
Conclusively, I feel more grounded and in place with my religious and spiritual beliefs in Wicca. Being Wiccan for me is peaceful, expecting nothing more than a little time being devoted into practices. Many Wiccans, pagans and neo-pagans use the phrase: "Nature is our church, " to emphasise that we have no building that we need to tie ourselves to as we worship nature. There are a few downsides, as described earlier in the first paragraph, but conflict cannot survive when only one person/group participates.
Location: Wattisham, England
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