Being A Teenage Pagan
Article ID: 14876
Age Group: Adult
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Posted: February 26th. 2012
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I am sixteen years old, and I am Wiccan. I have been for a very long time (since I was about eight or so) and I am still very much in love with every little tiny detail of my religion. I am so incredibly serious about my religion that I run a blog specifically geared for the informing and inspiration of other Wiccans/Pagans, both just starting out on their own Paths and who have been traveling it for quite some time.
I am not just some kid who thinks that Witchcraft is some kind of game, a way to get back at some insignificant thing a peer or authority figure has done to me, or a way to get my parents attention. I love the God and Goddess with all my heart, and I have been formally taught for solitary Wicca, legally, and with my parents’ permission. I even attend Circles for Sabbats and Esbats with the local coven when they roll around.
It has come to my attention, however, that some Pagan adults still hold a prejudice in the belief that young (under eighteen) Pagans are not ever serious about the craft, and simply are trying on our religion as a phase - via an anonymous comment left on my blog a few days ago where I was accused of not knowing anything of the path I have chosen to take. I have decided to address that here... I feel a pull to do so, and I have been taught to never ignore intuition.
While I cannot deny that teens tend to do things like that sometimes, that does not mean that all of us do. Not all of us are wishy-washy types who are more interested in ourselves that the world around us. There are those of us who are very, very grounded in our beliefs. Some of us can even actually be legitimate sources of information, with different viewpoints, and knowledge in the Craft than what may be someone who is older might have. That does not mean that we are wrong on our views, it just means that we think of things differently, which is not always a bad thing.
Some teenagers may be trying out a religion, yes. But “trying out a religion” and “trying on a religion” are two very different things. Even if a teenager moves on to a different religion from this, I believe they should have moved on from a very happy part of their life where advice was given in a friendly manner rather than just out right ridicule. There is also a good amount of us who actually do care about the way our religion is perceived, and do not push where we shouldn’t.
We know that we are young. We try our very best to not look like complete imbeciles, and to learn as much as we possibly can about what we are talking about.
Age doesn’t always equal knowledge, either. An adult that is just starting out is not going to know more than a teenager who have been raised as and been an active Pagan their whole life. That just doesn’t make any sense at all. That is not to say that adults don’t have more life experience, because they most certainly do, and you should always respect your elders, no matter who you are if out of nothing more than simple respect for the things they have achieved in their lifetimes. But just because we are younger does not necessarily mean that we are incompetent in our beliefs or knowledge, it simply means that we are younger and have less life experience.
That being said, teenagers just now entering the Craft... If you ever want to learn anything do not be arrogant to your elders. Do not pretend that you know more, or blow off the information and knowledge they give to you. Remember that as much as it may suck for you right now, that you don’t deserve the utmost and extreme respect simply for being on the Goddess’ great green Earth. You do have to earn what you get in the Craft, as well as in the life you are living right now. You must actually know what you are talking about to gain the ability to speak on it.
Constant learning, changing, and growing are the ways of our path. That being said, if someone has started on this path before you, it is very unlikely that you will ever stop learning from him or her. Do not ignore them because you think you know what is best (unless they are asking you to do something that is against your morals... then you shouldn’t be speaking to them at all on principle) take in what they teach you, every little bit, and remember it! You never know when it may show its self to be useful in the future. It could be something that could give you a new viewpoint from which to see something you legitimately have a problem with.
People are returning to the ancient ways, and the younger generation is the future. Paganism is constantly growing and changing, weaving a new path in the most unexpected and wonderfully exciting ways. If the trend is to continue, this generation cannot be accused of having incoherent beliefs and not knowing anything about the faith they have chosen. I think that, rather, they should be encouraged to grow in those beliefs and to build on them, instead. If they are truly ungrounded, and unbelieving they will find that out for themselves fairly quickly. If a child or teenager says that they worship the God and Goddess, we should all be excited for the balance, wonder, and beauty they have discovered in our path. How else are we supposed to grow as a community? How else are we supposed to keep up the energy we are building here?
As one generation leaves, the next moves in. It’s a cycle just like the rest of life... Just like everything else.
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