Articles/Essays From Pagans
September 16th. 2015 ...
Sacred Lands, Sacred Hearts
Nature Worship: or Seeing the Trees for the Ents
Vegan or Vegetarian? The Ethical Debate
Weeds and Seeds
August 6th. 2015 ...
Lost - A Pagan Parent's Tale
July 9th. 2015 ...
Love Spells: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
The Magic of Weather
June 7th. 2015 ...
A Pagan Altar
The Consort: Silent Partner or Hidden in Plain Sight?
A Minority of a Minority of a Minority
Why I Bother With Ritual: Poetry and Eikonic Atheism
May 6th. 2015 ...
Sex, Lies, and Witches: Love in a Time of Wiccans and Atheists
Gods, Myth, and Ritual in Naturalistic Paganism
I Claim Cronehood
13 Keys: The Crown of Kether
March 29th. 2015 ...
A Thread in the Tapestry of Witchcraft
March 28th. 2015 ...
On Wiccan Magick, Theurgy, Thaumaturgy and Setting Expectations
March 1st. 2015 ...
Choosing to Write a Shadow Book
Historiolae: The Spell Within the Story
My Concept Of Grey
February 1st. 2015 ...
Seeker Advice From a Coven Leader
The Three Centers of Paganism
Magick is No Illusion
The Ancient Use of God/Goddess Surnames
The Gods of My Heart
January 1st. 2015 ...
The Six Most Valuable Lessons I've Learned on My Path as a Witch
Manipulation of the Concept of Witchcraft
Publicly Other: Witchcraft in the Suburbs
Pagans All Around Us
Broomstick to the Emerald City
October 20th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits
A Microcosmic View of Ma'at
October 5th. 2014 ...
The History of the Sacred Circle
Abandoning Expectations and Remembering Your Roots
September 28th. 2014 ...
Seeking Pagan Lands for Pagan Burials
Creating a Healing Temple
September 20th. 2014 ...
GOD AND ME (A Pagan's Personal Reply to the New Atheists)
September 7th. 2014 ...
Deer Man- A Confounding Mystery
August 31st. 2014 ...
Coven vs. Solitary
A Strange Waking Dream
August 24th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
The Pagan Cleric
A Gathering of Sorcerers (A Strange Tale)
August 17th. 2014 ...
To Know, to Will, to Dare...
On Grief: Beacons of Light in the Shadows
August 10th. 2014 ...
As a Pagan, How Do I Represent My Path?
The Power of the Gorgon
August 3rd. 2014 ...
Are You a Natural Witch?
You Have to Believe We Are Magic...
July 27th. 2014 ...
Did I Just Draw Down the Moon?
Astrological Ages and the Great Astrological End-Time Cycle
The New Jersey Finishing School for Would-Be Glamour Girls and Boys
July 20th. 2014 ...
Being an Underage Wiccan
Greed, Power, Witches, and the Inquisition
Malleus Maleficarum - The Hammer of the Witches
Thoughts on Ghost Hunting
July 13th. 2014 ...
A World Of Witchcraft: Belief Is Only The Beginning...
From Christian to Pagan (Part III)
My Wiccan Ways...
July 6th. 2014 ...
Keys: Opening the Portals into Other Worlds
The Lore of the Door
Leaves of Love
June 29th. 2014 ...
What Does the Bible Say About Witches and Pagans?
Everything's Alright, Yes: Mary Magdalene
Are You My Familiar ?
Invocations of the God and Goddess
Results Magic and the Moral Compass
June 22nd. 2014 ...
Witchcraft vs. Religion
Christianity and Paganism: Why All Of the Fighting?
June 15th. 2014 ...
Becoming Your Own Wise One
Canine Familiars: Role of the Alpha
June 8th. 2014 ...
Moral Relativism and Wicca
Paganism in Cebu, Philippines
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Why I chose Traditionalism over Eclecticism
Article ID: 10685
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 3,466
Times Read: 3,871
RSS Views: 72,962
Posted: April 9th. 2006
Times Viewed: 3,871
Recently, I was asked to explain why, after nearly 20 years as an eclectic Witch, I'd decided to pursue the path of a specific tradition. The inquiry came from a relative newcomer to the world of Witchcraft, one who thought that one of the "goals" of Paganism as a religious outlet was to do away with specific ritual patterns and lineaged teachings.
Wasn't there more freedom to be had in cherry-picking your way through the ample lists of deities and ad hoc rituals? Surely sampling many spiritual cuisines is a better way to taste the universal nature of it all, right?
Well, in my experience, I have found I am personally better in isolation than immersion...that greater depth speaks to me in ways that greater breadth does not.
I find clarity in working from a place of constants. Having some things as given, stable, allows me to be more creative and inventive in choosing which aspects to vary from. This improves my understanding of how my small changes to these constants will affect the usual and predictable results. It shows me the potential. And in a focused view, like a hypothesis in an experiment, it teaches me how directly my manipulations have changed the anticipated outcomes.
So if the goal is ‘changing consciousness in accordance with will’, and in this case MY WILL, then I like to make sure I've covered as many bases as possible before I go messing around with variables.
Perhaps, as I told this seeker, I am just more inclined to dance with the devils I know than those I do not. This little cosmic clue-by-four to the head has led me to move in favor of a more structured practice....and this is what I was trying to explain about how I had come to be a traditionalist after my past stint on the great eclectic learning curve.
In tradition, I don't see limitations...I see differentiation.
Investigating “universal truth” through a distinct, separate subset cultivated through individual experience can expand the idea of what a "universal truth" is. Experiences are wrought by circumstance, environment, and interaction with others, both with a like mind and with alternate opinions. Conflict itself is not unhealthy, so long as it is productive to expanding the understanding of “universal truth.”
In tradition, I don't see separatism....I see diversity.
Differences are what cause, and sometimes result from, evolution. Differences can foster growth in new directions and bring needed changes when ideas, politics and patterns have become stagnant. Pockets of people who are unified by their similar characteristics and shared beliefs may contribute alternate understandings of what was thought to be a “universal truth” enough to shift a paradigm and completely change it.
In tradition, I don't see delineation....I see discernment.
I see it filtering a wider spectrum of choices to allow a more quantifiable interpretation of "universal truth" on a smaller, more understandable scale. Through applying one's own unique perspective of experiential reality, it becomes easier to more readily embrace concepts which were far too large to be comprehended fully through absolutism.
In tradition, I don't see restriction…I see simplification.
It is human (and animal) nature to simplify. Sensory input is measured, calculated and compared to the subset of prior knowledge and experience. The search for recognition of a previous pattern, the firing of synapse sequences toward a familiar perception, is what drives our responses. It is the unconscious will of survival kicking in to quickly interpret a stimulus and to evaluate it so as to provide the mind, body and soul with the best possible response and reaction. Survival is all about simplicity.
In tradition, I don't see working in a controlled environment as being close-minded toward others....I see it as knowing one's self first.
I truly believe that one must embrace the self in order to relate openly and from the core with others. In starting with what an individual knows as his/her truths, one can come to terms with how everything is defined in his/her reality. Before expanding into the obtuse nature of "universal truth", it should be understood how what is already known will alter one’s perceptions and will color one's experiences about how we perceive things as we are moving toward the unknowable.
And the unknowable includes the interior of another person's head and heart.
From the place of microcosm, I can comprehend the macrocosm. The notion of Perfect Love and Perfect Trust is more real to me here. This is how I understand the ecumenical nature of Nature.
But do not confuse my leanings toward traditionalism to denote a lack of respect for those who favor eclecticism. I certainly do not begrudge people who are indeed capable of mentally dealing with a larger scope of mind-boggling minutia than I am. In fact, I applaud them for their brain capacity and strength of ego to withstand the long-term effects of juggling so many sources of wisdom simultaneously.
I am just aware that I am not similarly gifted. That is not a bad thing. Just different. And it is this difference which drives me toward being responsible for my own tiny blip on the timeline of human evolution. I feel a sense of desperation to remain mindful about what I can and cannot push my brain into truly comprehending.
For only when I am that awake, participating that fully, can I be responsible at all. Only by such steadfastness can I hope to reach the next epiphany. This is how I suffer to learn...
Therefore, when I do earn a particular kernel of knowledge and take it inside my core, I can feel comfortable and confident enough with it to use the hard won understanding with rest of the ol' Witches Pyramid. This helps me to navigate my way around this world....and any other world (or is that Otherworld?!) that I may encounter.
Educated exploration...thoughtful tinkering...conscientious conviction...willful and deliberate Witchery.
This is what I have found as I have begun to traverse with tradition....and what I did not find during my experiences with eclecticism. Your experiences may ---and should--- vary.
Copyright: © 2006 Michelle F. Starrett (Albiana)
Location: Wheaton, Illinois
Author's Profile: To learn more about Albiana - Click HERE
Other Articles: Albiana has posted 3 additional articles- View them?
Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE
Email Albiana... (No, I have NOT opted to receive Pagan Invites! Please do NOT send me anonymous invites to groups, sales and events.)
Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2015 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, Wrenâ€™s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witchesâ€™ 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.
of The World
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).