Articles/Essays From Pagans
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 ...
How Did I Get Here? (My Pagan Journey)
Wild Mountain Woman: Landscape Goddess
September 3rd. 2016 ...
Rethinking Heaven: What Happens When We Die?
What is Happening in My Psychic Reading?
August 12th. 2016 ...
When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch
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 ...
Faery Guided Journey
How to Bond with the Elements through Magick
Magical Household Cleaning
Working with the Elements
April 2nd. 2016 ...
An Alternative Conception of Divine Reciprocity
Becoming Wiccan: What I Never Expected
The Fear of Witchcraft
Rebirth By Fire: A Love Letter to Mama Maui and Lady Pele
Blowing Bubbles with the Goddess
Magic in Sentences
The Evolution of Thought Forms
March 28th. 2016 ...
Revisiting The Spiral
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 ...
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
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
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
To Be Witch...
Article ID: 12424
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 3,073
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Author: Symphony Raine
Posted: July 6th. 2008
Times Viewed: 3,788
I am currently reading The Spiral Dance by StarHawk, and while I am only in the first couple of chapters it has already given me many things to think about. One such thing is the topic of this essay; what does it mean to be a "Witch"?
The Author of this rather compelling book explains part of it so beautifully that I simply must quote her here: "The word "witch" carries with it so many negative connotations that many people wonder why we use it at all. Yet to reclaim the word "Witch" is to reclaim our right, as women, to be powerful; as men, to know the feminine within as divine. To be a Witch is to identify with nine million victims of bigotry and hatred to take responsibility for shaping a world in which prejudice claims no more victims. A Witch is a "shaper", a creator who bends the unseen into form, and so becomes one of the Wise, one whose life is infused with Magic."
This passage was so gripping and so inspiring to me that it sent my thoughts immediately away from what I was reading and into a spiral of my own winding them down in on me. My mind twirling to the depths of who I am with the question: What does it mean to be a Witch?
While I feel that I am "Witch" and I have been studying and practicing this path for almost 10 years I must admit that this is a question that has never occurred to me before, and so quite bemused at myself I lit a candle, closed my eyes and allowed my thoughts to wander where they would. I knew this was necessary within the very depths of myself; to seek out MY answer to this question; regardless of what authors say, what the majority consensus is among the pagan community, or even what my friends say. I needed to stop listening to them and hear MY own voice, it called to me and I NEEDED to listen.
So I began to think about my journey to this point. It all started with a friend who was interested in Tarot, she did a reading for me and sparked my interest; resulting in me buying myself my first deck at 17 years old. I remember keeping them tucked away in my backpack I wasn't sure how my mother would react and I knew they would upset my Great-Grandmother, as understanding as she was she firmly believed that such things would be the ultimate demise of someone's eternal soul, and making her cry was the last thing I wanted to do EVER!
The lines and the twists and turns of my path get blurry for quite awhile and I am not sure I could've told you about them even as they were happening, but somehow I got to this point. This moment in time when I stopped to see what my thoughts were, when I heard my own voice calling to me. It is an awe-inspiring feeling to be drawn into yourself; especially for a person like me who has concentrated on understanding everyone around me, completely ignoring my own inner voice.
Here I sit contemplating what it means to me to be a Witch. It is not an easy path, and yet it is most fulfilling. It is a challenge in many ways, being a witch has challenged me to think beyond that which I was taught as a child and even that which I am told now. It has placed a mirror directly in front of me making me face the good and the bad, accept myself, change things that I feel are outdated, to grow and to learn.
To Be Witch means learning and accepting yourself: all of you, not as a flawed being but as exactly who you were meant to be, to learn to never accept defeat; each failure is a stepping stone to growth and therefore there are no true failures.
To Be Witch means to take control and RESPONSIBILITY for your life, the good the bad the ugly and everything in between (a daunting task to be sure).
To Be Witch means learning and accepting the fact that you are NEVER alone, you are part of a wonderful web of life that connects you to everyone and everything that exists. It means understanding that in everything there is truth and all roads lead to the same end, it is learning to appreciate the difference and diversity in all humans, animals and inanimate creations alike.
To Be Witch means... as put in the simplest of terms, ACCEPTING LOVE.
Once this love is accepted it can't help but to be shared. You move at ease with the flow of life; you have your ups and your downs and even your sideways, but there is always movement and nothing is static, and I have found that you come to events more prepared and capable of handling them. It is growth and movement a never-ending journey through life that leaves you with a greater completeness than you have ever felt.
It means so many things that I guess the best way to put it into words is to that To Be Witch is to be at Ease with your ever-changing self in the ever-changing world around you.
At least that is my truth. Your truth may be different from mine and it is equally as valid and that is the beauty of the world. I want to ask those of my friends who walk paths similar to mine to take the time to spiral into their own souls and ask themselves:
What does it mean to you to Be Witch? How have you connected to the essence of your spiritual path? These are questions we must each ask our selves as we traverse through our lives in order to fully understand and realize our own growth, needs and dedication.
The Spiral Dance- by Starhawk
Copyright: © 2008 Rhiannon Dragonraine
Location: Waynesville, Missouri
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