Your browser does not support script
TWV Presents...

Articles/Essays From Pagans

[Show all]

Views: 19,776,971

March 4th. 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 it’s 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?

Nature’s Reward

August 12th. 2016 ...

When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch

Past Midnight

Hungarian Belief in Fairies

Designing a Pagan Last Will and Testament

July 13th. 2016 ...

What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses

Magic With A Flick of my Finger

An Open Mind and Heart

Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum

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

An Alternative Conception of Divine Reciprocity

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

Lateral Transcendence: Toward Greater Compassion

Spring Has Sprung!

January 22nd. 2016 ...

Coming Out of the Broom Closet

Energy and Karma

Community and Perception

December 20th. 2015 ...

Introduction to Tarot For the Novice

Magia y Wicca

October 24th. 2015 ...

Facing Your Demons: The Shadow Self

The Dream Eater--A Practical Use of Summoning Talismans

Native American Spirituality Myopia

A Dream Message

Feeling the Pulse of Autumn

October 16th. 2015 ...

Sacred Lands, Sacred Hearts

September 30th. 2015 ...

The Other-Side

September 16th. 2015 ...

Vegan or Vegetarian? The Ethical Debate

Nature Worship: or Seeing the Trees for the Ents

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

A Minority of a Minority of a Minority

The Consort: Silent Partner or Hidden in Plain Sight?

Why I Bother With Ritual: Poetry and Eikonic Atheism

May 6th. 2015 ...

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

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

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

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

Article Specs

Article ID: 11341

VoxAcct: 187567

Section: words

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 3,722

Times Read: 3,851

RSS Views: 86,012
Musings Of A Wiccan High Priest and Elder

Author: Stanley Modrzyk or Dorothy Modrzyk
Posted: January 14th. 2007
Times Viewed: 3,851

On Teachings and Tradition…

A wise man once said, “There are NO secrets, there are only times when understanding is not meant to be ours.”

I am sure that there are many people who have studied with a teacher or a group and in the course of their classes encountered something they did not fully understand and when asking, “Why is that?” or “How come it is done that way?” have been given the reply, “It is a secret!” To me those four words are some of the most unacceptable words a person, especially a student, may ever hear. Doubly so when it comes to Wicca and its teachings or Magickal practice.

For a person who claims the position of teacher to respond to a student’s serious question by saying, “It is a secret” and then say nothing more is a cop out. This should be a clear sign to a student that the teacher has been asked a question that they are not capable of answering and/or do not wish to be bothered with.

Now, there are some times that the student, in the opinion of the teacher, is not ready for the particular instruction. If this is the case, then the teacher should reply that the student will be taught the answer to their question when the student is ready for the information. However, if this answer is given it should always be followed by a short explanation of why the student is not ready at this time. If the student is a part of a larger class and the question goes to material that will be covered in an upcoming class, then the student along with the rest off the class should be so informed along with a timeline of approximately when the material will be covered.

A teacher should be ever aware that students – especially new students – are very much like explorers of old. Each step forward upon this new path brings them to new discoveries. Each crest they reach opens before them a new panorama of experience that they cannot wait to dive into. Because of this, any delay needs to be explained to the student with a reason. To say, “It is a secret” or “We’ll get to that later” without a more detailed explanation does the student a serious disservice. Remember that true students are on a quest for knowledge and vague wave offs instead of real answers will not only hinder them on their quest but may dissuade them from their quest entirely.

Likewise, if a student asks why something in ritual is done in a particular way there should always be a valid reason that the teacher can explain, in detail if needed, as to why in ritual something is done in a particular way. Too often teachers have relied on an answer of “It is Tradition” to explain why they do something a particular way in ritual. While indeed a particular way of working a ritual may be steeped in a Tradition that has been carried forward for years, for a teacher to use “Tradition” and “Tradition” alone as an explanation is more of an excuse for not knowing why than it is an answer as to why they do what they do.

When it comes to working ritual and magick every action done in Circle is an action that requires an expenditure of energy. Energy is never something that a person can waste in a Magickal Circle. Working within a Magickal Circle our fore bearers did nothing more and nothing less that was absolutely required to achieve the desired end. From the casting of the Circle itself to the order of lighting the candles to the exact number of times a direction within the Circle might be censed was done with a very specific reason and was meant to accomplish a specific and necessary part of the overall ritual. Anything and everything that they did within that Circle had a purpose that could be explained without the use of the word, “Tradition”.

So it should be in any Circle wherein magick is to be worked. When you work a ritual you should always know why you do everything that you do. It is not enough to simply know how to do it. All of your actions within Circle should be done with full consciousness of reason. Working with “Tradition” as your reason is no better than working in a mental fog or working with your eyes closed. Because of this, no teacher should ever just say to a student, “We do it this way because it is our Tradition”. A good teacher should be able to define the reason and the purpose governing every action that is done during one of their rituals.

Over the years there have been a number of times when one of my students asked a question that I had never been asked before. A question that, even after thinking about it for a while, I could not come up with a real answer for. Now I could have tried faking it and brushed it aside with the “It is a secret” line. But as said before, that would do the student a serious disservice. It would also be doing myself a serious disservice.

By admitting that I had no answer to the question I showed my honesty to the student.

Then, by opening up a willingness to research the answer with the student’s help, I created a mutual “quest” for the both of us. The resulting quest for the answer by both of us brought knowledge and a deeper understanding of the subject to the student and to myself as well. Knowledge which, had I said, “It is a secret”, I would never have gained.

It also brought the student and myself closer together because the student learned that while their teacher may know a great deal there are still thing that their teacher needs to learn – and, more importantly, is willing to learn.

As I said at the beginning of this musing, a wise man once said, “There are NO secrets, there are only times when understanding is not meant to be ours.” Sometimes it takes a question from a student and honesty on the part of the teacher for that time of understanding to be now.

Musings by Stanley J. Modrzyk

Copyright: Copyright 1995 by Stanley J. Modrzyk


Stanley Modrzyk or Dorothy Modrzyk

Location: Berwyn, Illinois

Author's Profile: To learn more about Stanley Modrzyk or Dorothy Modrzyk - Click HERE

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

Email Stanley Modrzyk or Dorothy Modrzyk... (Yes! I have opted to receive invites to Pagan events, groups, and commercial sales)

To send a private message to Stanley Modrzyk or Dorothy Modrzyk ...

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 1997-2017 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).