Articles/Essays From Pagans
June 16th. 2013 ...
How To Stay Spiritual Amidst This Chaos?
Hearing The Music And Dancing The Dance
A Tale of the Wood
June 9th. 2013 ...
The Nature of Sacrifice
The Magick of Buildings
Start your own Pagan Church in Canada - A Detailed Guide
June 2nd. 2013 ...
Maiden, Mother, Who?! (A Discussion of the Triple Goddess)
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Among the Greenwod - An Interview with Raven Grimassi
May 26th. 2013 ...
So You Think You've Found a Teacher...
Learning To Live Your Own Life
Raising Personal Magickal Energy for Spellwork
Casting The Wiccan Circle
May 19th. 2013 ...
The Role of Identity in Magic
Talking Trash? It's a Dirty Subject but Waste Happens.
My Wiccan Journey
13 Keys: The Victory of Netzach
May 12th. 2013 ...
Pagan Studies I: How Should We Define Modern Paganism?
The Third Path
Nothing Special... Part Two
May 5th. 2013 ...
The Value of Multicultural Awareness
Put Your Back Into It (Our Lady of the Sacred Honey Badger)
Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances and Red Lipped Bat Fish
April 28th. 2013 ...
Lessons from the Lessers: Iris
April 21st. 2013 ...
Taken By The Goddess: The Crescent Moon Tattoo
The Gods/Being Godbothered
To Be A Witch
The Archetypes are Gods: Re-godding the Archetypes
April 14th. 2013 ...
On The Inclusion of Children
'Wand Fun' With Grandson
Lessons from a Baby
Lessons of Freedom: On Divinity and Healing
April 7th. 2013 ...
Out of the Broom Closet... Sorta
A Journey Through the Witches Tarot
History and Science Behind Numerology
March 31st. 2013 ...
What is the Magickal Self?
Ethics and Numerology
March 24th. 2013 ...
Keystones of the Sacred Land
March 17th. 2013 ...
Why Some Pagans and Witches Still Hide
Witch Heritage 101: What Happens When Witch Haters Joke about anti-Witch Films
I'm Not a Broom. So What's with the Closet?
March 10th. 2013 ...
Top Ten Stupid Things I Did as a New Pagan: Part 3
Hunting for the Real Witch in Film
The Collective Shadow
Lies - The Opposite of Truth
March 3rd. 2013 ...
Grounding and Releasing Negative Energy
A Patchwork of Magick
February 24th. 2013 ...
Top Ten Stupid Mistakes I Made as a New Pagan (Part Two)
February 17th. 2013 ...
Top Ten Stupid Mistakes I made as a New Pagan... Part One
Gardening with Crystal Energies
A Call from the Ancestors
Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances and Black Water Snakes
February 10th. 2013 ...
We Are the Weirdos, Mister: A Completely Uncool Story of Origin
February 3rd. 2013 ...
"I'll Grind Your Bones to Make my Bread": Pagans and Animal Husbandry
The Role of Contemporary Culture in Magic
A Pagan Response to Endangered Earth
The Great Mother's Gift, Heinlein, and the Nature of Squirrels
13 Keys: The Glory of Hod
January 27th. 2013 ...
Why We Do Need Wicca
The Cosmos In the Coffee Shop
On Travel Spirituality and Magick
January 20th. 2013 ...
Beloved Backs and How to Save Them
Building or Burning Bridges?
Plants, Magic and Intuition
Plagiarism - How It Harms Our Community
January 13th. 2013 ...
Ramblings of a Pagan Guy: Stupid Clichťs
The Magick and Power of Words
Aging Is Not Easy
The Riddle of Who We Are?
January 6th. 2013 ...
Wicca v Witchcraft
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
The Discipline Of Wicca
Article ID: 10663
Age Group: Adult
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Author: Church of the Blessed Moon
Posted: April 9th. 2006
Times Viewed: 5,098
I recently attended a function at the local university. As I was visiting with an old friend, I was approached by a young woman, who recognized me from a past local Pagan event that I had organized. This happens to me with an amount of regularity, as I organize many local Pagan events. However, as I am busy during these events with the organizational aspect and not the social aspect, I tend to get noticed but not have time to notice others. So before me is a young Pagan, seeking answers for her new spiritual quest. She assumes that I am the go to woman, and she begins to ask questions:
ďSo, the Wiccan Rede. It means I can do whatever I want right? And, I joined this online coven. Yeah, we do rituals in a chat room. Anyway, I was wondering, is it OK to hex my boss? I mean, it would be for the greater good. If I come to your coven, can you help me develop my powers? If you like, I can show you some really awesome spells. Oh, but I canít come to your coven this week, because Iím going to a kegger the night before and I donít think Iíll be sober. Is it true that at Beltane I can have as much sex as I want?Ē
The questions are true enough, although they didnít all come in one sitting. It took several conversations with this young woman to get her to be honest about her goals in being a Pagan. Essentially, her goals boiled down to sex, drugs, and a spiritual get out of jail free card.
Unfortunately, she is not alone. I frequently run across Pagans who have jumped into the Pagan boat for the spiritual get out of jail free card. Iíll refer to it as the SGJFC. In conjunction with the SGJFC there is also the issue, which this young woman presented, of fast food Wicca. Fast food Wicca is also known by theology buffs as post enlightenment ideology. Basically, what we have are people who experience Wicca only through email/books and not through human contact, or people who experience Wicca only once or twice a year (Beltane and Samhain), or people who only experience Wicca when it is convenient. By convenient I mean weddings, funerals, or when there is a problem to which said alleged Wiccan is seeking a magickal solution. It would appear that fast food Wicca is a direct result of the popularization of Wicca in mainstream society.
Christianity has the same problem, except for them it is Easter and Christmas, weddings and funerals, and TV evangelism. Fast food religion is an insult to any religion, as it provides practitioners with the false hope of the SGJFC.
What many new Wiccans do not realize, is that our faith goes beyond books, chat rooms, and poems like the Wiccan Rede. It is an experience. It is an experience that cannot truly be placed into words, or emails, or gathered twice a year. It is an experience that affects the way you view the world, which we are a part of if we choose to acknowledge it.
That being said, what does it take to know this experience we call Goddess and God? In a word, discipline. It takes discipline to try to cross the veil between worlds over and over again until you can accomplish it. It takes discipline to read and listen to the words of our elders, especially when their words are not what you want to hear. There has been many a time where I have steamed over advice or information, which I did not choose to accept at the moment, from someone who had already been where I was.
It takes discipline to go to meetings with your coven or study group, and not give up because someone irritates you in the group. Believe me, there will always be someone who may irritate you. But in order to continue your work with the group, you have to be disciplined and patient in order to work through your differences.
It takes discipline to care for your body, and nurture your mind. Many of us have experienced traumatic events in our lives. In order for us to be better able to work magick, work with a group of other people, and generally function as healthy human beings, many of us seek counseling or seek to heal ourselves through various resources. The bottom line is, to take on an inner quest for spirituality one has to begin to work through the other issues inside oneself. I would say that for me, itís not always about experiencing total peace of mind, but working to make my mind more peaceful. As for the body, remember that your mind is attached to it and reaps the benefits of good care. No matter what is said about mind over matter, an ill-cared-for body cannot be meditated away. Itís all about respect, and learning to love you. You have to love yourself because no one else can do a better job than you can.
When I was a professional counselor, I always heard my clientís say, ďWell, I tried to be good. But then I messed up, so I figured all was lost and I quit trying to be good.Ē In Wicca, we do not ask for your perfection. The Goddess/God do not demand perfection, or sacrifice, or for you to deny that you have desires. What is reasonable though is to understand that what we do has effects. Those effects may not be what we want. If you get an undesired effect, itís OK because it is normal and it is human. The trick is to have restraint, discipline, and good decision making skills. That way when an action has an unwanted effect, you can make a conscience decision to do something different.
Another aspect to discipline and respecting oneself in Wicca, is knowing when to ask for help. As we are a part of a greater whole, and are not separated in this world, reaching out for assistance when appropriate is like reaching out to another part of the Goddess/God. To respect oneself in Wicca is to know when you cannot handle the burden alone.
Iím sure that the ideas of discipline, effort, outreach, good decision making, spirituality, and responsibility for the self/community, are not ideas that would float well with the young woman I mentioned earlier. But she didnít want Wicca. She wanted a SGJFC with her fries and milk shake. Wicca is no free ride. Wicca is not glamorous. Wicca is not found in a book or chat room. It is about knowing the Goddess and God, and taking a journey that will ask you to think about the way you live your life.
Copyright: Kendra R. Reece, February 25, 2006
Church of the Blessed Moon
Location: Cape Girardeau, Missouri
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