Your browser does not support script
TWV Presents...



Articles/Essays From Pagans

[Show all]


Views: 16,506,321


April 20th. 2014 ...

Six Rules for Safer Pagan Sex: A Guide

Safety: Let's Shift Our Focus

A Pagan Perspective on Easter

Morality and Controversy in the Craft

The Oak King's Domain (A Story)

The Star Child


April 13th. 2014 ...

Magick and Consequences: My Experience with Sigils

Being a Worrisome Witch

Don't Talk Yourself Out of Trying Something New!

What to Do When the Spell/Ritual Flops


April 6th. 2014 ...

The Elements and the Quarters

Dark Moon Scry: Aries 2014

How the Wheel of the Year Works “Down Under”

13 Keys: The Understanding of Binah


March 30th. 2014 ...

Manifesting the Dream: On Religious Organizations, Pagan Abbeys and our Order

True Meaning of Community

Thoughts on Unverified Personal Gnosis

My Beautiful Grove- A Matter Of Perspective


March 23rd. 2014 ...

Spirituality and Social Change

The First Step to Anywhere!


March 16th. 2014 ...

From Christian to Pagan (Part I)

Nature And The Celtic Tree Calendar

The Teeth in the Darkness


March 9th. 2014 ...

Healing the Witch Within

Incarcerated Witches

Discovering Wicca as a Young Child

March Pisces Energy: Pre-natal Memories and Standing Upright


March 2nd. 2014 ...

Lessons of Ostara: Six Ways to Move Forward

The Wiccan Priest - The Misunderstood Role

Which is Which? Am I a Warlock or a Witch?

The Secret Teaching: Selected Aspects


February 23rd. 2014 ...

Wicca or Traditional Witchcraft: Some Differences

Everything is Not Under Your Control: Making Sense of the Senseless

The Wonders and Gifts of Paganism and Community

What Makes Us What We Are


February 16th. 2014 ...

The Stones of Fear: Anxiety Relief

Death, Grief, and Psychopomp Work in Shamanic Healing

Spiritual Traveler: Form To Essence

Alternative Medicine – What Is It?


February 9th. 2014 ...

Words of Power!

The Allure of Glamour in the Apocolypse

Lunar Insight Planetary Preponderances: Year of the Horse, Imbolc and Mercury Grazings


February 2nd. 2014 ...

The Magick of Jewelry and Metals

Building a Magick Mirror

The Golden Bough: a Study Guide (Part 2)


January 26th. 2014 ...

Love of Self: The Hardest Thing To Do

The Golden Bough as a Seminal Work in the Neo Pagan Movement (Part 1)

13 Keys: The Mercy of Chesed

Lightworking In The Screen Age: Staying Connected


January 19th. 2014 ...

Open Letter to the Goddess

A Southern Girl's Guide to Hospitality

Social Conventions and the Pagan World

Reclaiming Independence


January 12th. 2014 ...

Never Once Was There a An Athame Near My Chalice: My Very Sheltered Occultist Upbringing

One Wiccan's Journey Through Depression


January 5th. 2014 ...

Religion vs Practice: Defining Witchcraft in a Modern Age

Traditional Apprenticeships: Training in the Modern Pagan Abbey

2014's Magickal Magnificent Manifestations!

Lunar Insight Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances: Wise and Wild


December 29th. 2013 ...

My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 3)

13 Keys: The Might of Geburah

Beyond The Season of Greed


December 22nd. 2013 ...

My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 2)


December 15th. 2013 ...

The Hex Murder of 1928

My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 1)

Lady of the Forest Mist (A Story of the Woods)

Lunar Insight Moon Musings: Hunting, Fires and Parting Shots


December 8th. 2013 ...

Help and Thoughts for Pagans New to the Journey

Using Your Wand in Reverse

The Cry of the Soul

Leaving a Group - Part 2: Leaving, Healing and Moving Forward


December 1st. 2013 ...

The Tarot as a Tool for Raising Consciousness

A Pragmatic Look at Neo Paganism

Leaving a Pagan Group – Part 1: To Leave or to Stay?


November 24th. 2013 ...

The Groovy Aquarian Christ: Jesus From a Pagan Perspective

The Pagan and the Papacy


November 17th. 2013 ...

Which Witch? Philosophical and Psychological Roots of Wicca

For Love of the God

A Threat to Religious Liberties?


November 10th. 2013 ...

Where did Aleister Crowley’s Influence on Wicca Go?


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










Article Specs

Article ID: 14179

VoxAcct: 346757

Section: words

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 1,208

Times Read: 2,331

RSS Views: 15,829
Fasting: Need vs. Necessity

Author: RedHawk
Posted: January 2nd. 2011
Times Viewed: 2,331

One of the things that originally drew me to Wicca was the notion that this form of spirituality, at least in theory, evolved with the needs of the society that it served--yet remaining true to it's core values. Many religions claim to do so, but fall short—at least in my opinion. But are there some traditions that we're clinging to that don't necessarily serve the greater or individual good?

One of the more outdated traditions, that I believe needs a rethink, is fasting (before ritual) . Now, before all the traditionalists burn me in effigy, I'm not saying do away with it, simply reconsider its necessity. Most of the covens I've had contact with are flexible on this issue, inasmuch as it becomes a medical necessity to eat (i.e. diabetics and those needing to take medicine with food) . I've never met one that pushed it to the point of endangering a member's health, although I guess the possibility that such inflexibility IS out there, somewhere—let's hope not.

But the idea of self-deprivation of such a basic need, really...how realistic is it? I know several people, both solitary and coven-members, that either laugh or shake their head @ this tradition. Most of the time the “fast for at least 8 hours prior to ritual” rule is largely ignored or just downright “disobeyed.”

If I go for longer than 3-4 hours without food, I start feeling it. My blood sugar dips (no, I'm not diabetic) , my stomach starts growling/hurting, and my ability to focus is considerably diminished. I know there are those who say this is a great way to learn to focus. In my case, it's a terrific way to give myself a splitting headache. Yeah boy, I'm really going to focus then, right?

Of course I'm not encouraging anyone to run to Burger King and pig out on a Super-sized extra-value meal an hour before ritual. Overeating can lead to indigestion—another concentration-killer. Besides, what about all those yummy homemade goodies that people bring for the Great Feast? Definitely want to save room for that. So, obviously—from where I'm sitting—neither extreme is a viable option. Allowing yourself, or others, to snack on some celery or baby carrots shouldn't be out of the question either.

I also realize that fasting has a useful spiritual function. In pursuit of a vision quest, it can be essential in crossing the boundaries of dimensional reality. That said, I think it is ONE.... ONE of many useful tools that can help one achieve that purpose.

I remember when I began my Wiccan studies, one of the most important points drilled into my head—was: DO NOT accept everything a High Priest or High Priestess tells you as divine law. I took this to mean only you know what's right for you. A HP or HPS can't tell you that. Of course, they should be afforded the respect and experience of their position. But in the end, any decisions you make on self-governance are exclusively yours.

If you do something foolish, don't blame someone else; no one is holding a gun to your head to walk a particular path. I think it's also INCUMBENT upon the student/seeker/coven-member to let a HP/HPS know when something doesn't feel right. If something is hurting you or your health and the person on high isn't sensitive to that—whatever it may be, it's not rocket science. Find another coven, its just not worth it.

Now. I'm about to tell you something you ALL already know, so bear with me, there is a point. In the last few centuries, we've moved from an agrarian---to an industrial—to a technological society. Our bodies have changed with the demands of society, with workdays getting longer, sleep amounts getting shorter; the old, gray temporal mare just ain't what she used to be! Even the term “day” has become subjective. I work third shift. When most of you are up and productive... the Sun God—in all his glory—is smiling brightly upon you.

On the other hand, the Great Mother with all her magnificent wisdom and peace greets me, lovingly, as I drive in to work. The human body is changing and adapting to the evolving stresses we put on it. It might not always be for the better, but it's inevitable. Our needs are changing, so must our practices.

Most of us have not spent a lifetime in Tibet, striving for nothing but self-deprivation in the quest for enlightenment. I admire and humbly bow to those who do, but I wasn't meant to do that in this lifetime. I'm human, not a Saint. Sure I want to be enlightened, but call me crazy-- giving myself a deprivation headache isn't the most direct path to Nirvana—not at least in my narrow field of vision. I'm a practical pagan, and given the recent deaths at a sweat lodge, I'd rather let my common sense guide me on this one.

Maybe I'm not as evolved as some, but I've got to do what's right for me. Last I checked, spiritual evolution was a journey, not an eight-hour sprint to the finish. I'm in no rush to get where I'm going. I'm looking to accumulate a lifetime of experiences that will carry me to and influence me in the next lifetime. Hopefully, for the betterment of all those I come in contact with, if that is truly my next destiny.

While I'm sure I've annoyed some of you—that certainly wasn't my intention. I hope I've at least given you something to think about today. I'm not—by any means—saying let's do away with any traditional practice, I'm merely saying let's reconsider its application. Those of you, who are infinitely more experienced, please have patience with a first degree who questions everything she's told and expected to believe, just because someone with more experience told her to do so.

Thank you for allowing me to stir the cauldron of controversy and deeper consideration. May you each find fulfillment and contentment on your chosen path.

Blessed Be!





ABOUT...

RedHawk


Location: Atlanta, Georgia

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




Other Articles: RedHawk has posted 1 additional articles- View them?

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




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

To send a private message to RedHawk ...



Pagan Essays
1996-2014





Pagan Web
8,000 Links





Pagan Groups
Local Covens etc.





Pagan/Witch
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 1997-2014 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
1996-2014










 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).