Articles/Essays From Pagans
March 2nd. 2014 ...
The Wiccan Priest - The Misunderstood Role
Lessons of Ostara: Six Ways to Move Forward
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 ...
Death, Grief, and Psychopomp Work in Shamanic Healing
The Stones of Fear: Anxiety Relief
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
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
Leaving a Group - Part 2: Leaving, Healing and Moving Forward
The Cry of the Soul
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 Pagan and the Papacy
The Groovy Aquarian Christ: Jesus From a Pagan Perspective
November 17th. 2013 ...
For Love of the God
Which Witch? Philosophical and Psychological Roots of Wicca
A Threat to Religious Liberties?
November 10th. 2013 ...
Where did Aleister Crowley’s Influence on Wicca Go?
Thoughts on the Threefold Law/Law of Return
The Celtic Tree Calendar
Nine Creeds: A Statement and Explanation of My Beliefs
November 3rd. 2013 ...
The Mundane/Spiritual Mirror: What Does it Say About Your Life?
October 27th. 2013 ...
Thoughts On a Miley-Cyrus/ Robin-Thicke Society
On Being Wiccan: Some Unsolicited Advice
Pagan Religious Communities in your Area: Connecting With and Creating Them
Banishing, Invocation and the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram
October 20th. 2013 ...
Bottle Spells and Magick in Hoodoo Tradition
Weather Magick: Who is Responsible for the Weather?
Broom Closet: In or Out?
On Coven and Claws
October 13th. 2013 ...
Destroying to Create: A Lesson from the Dead
Consume the Scorpion- Scorpion Energy Revisited
October 6th. 2013 ...
UPG and U: A Breakdown and Building Up of Unverified and Unsubstantiated Personal Gnosis
Answering The Call from Spirit
Coping with the Loss of a Familiar
The Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage, Part 2 (The South)
September 29th. 2013 ...
Six Reasons Why Covens are Here to Stay
Priestessing and Titles: What's the Point?
Truth or Convenience? Questioning Motives for Spiritual Advancement
Speaking Up: The Conflict Between the Spiritualist and Our Human Experience
September 22nd. 2013 ...
Death of a Friendship within the Craft
The Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage, Part 1 (The Center)
September 15th. 2013 ...
Some Pagan Prayers
The Holocaust Survivor (Part II)
Lunar Insight Moon Musings: Bramble and Cerridwen
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Natural Witch for Life. Always Have Been; Always Will Be.
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Article ID: 10731
Age Group: Adult
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Posted: June 25th. 2006
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I believe that we are all natural Witches, but especially those of us who have chosen to walk this path at this time. Before we lost our innocence, the unseen was visible to us. There was a time we were all visited by Fairies, Gnomes, Unicorns, and various deities in whatever form they chose or were celebrated. We had our own private rituals, and we were especially drawn to the moon in all her wondrous phases. We were drawn to various animals and picked up special rocks and crystals that had meaning for us (although we didn't recognize it as such at the time). We had our "treasure box" under the bed that was full of magical items: totems, amulets, and various other meaningful items. As we grew older, we grew out of our ability to be sensitive to the energy of the Universe and became increasingly concerned with the social mores and rituals shared by our family and by the rest of the world. We ceased to believe in the magical and therefore lost our connection to the Universe. We ceased to feel the energy that drives us. We lost our vision of the magical world.
I had the luxury of religious freedom (freedom from religion) when I was growing up. In fact, we didn't talk about religion (or God) at all. I can remember the two times we went to religious services (other than weddings and funerals); both in response to invitations from family members when we visited them.
I (like most children) was fascinated with Witchcraft and magic, as well as archaeology and mythology. We used to camp often during my childhood, and I had a special bond with nature and Spirit. My best friends were dogs and cats and all manner of winged and footed familiars, and of course, I brought as many of them home as I could. I just never identified this impulse as spirituality (I was only 10); I just knew what needed to be done and thought nothing of doing it. It just was. I also was a very sensitive child, which I've now come to identify as clairsentience, which made me the butt of many a joke and made my childhood somewhat miserable and my adulthood rich and wonderful.
As I was growing up in a Hispanic neighborhood, "magic" was practiced all around me all the time. Little things, like being touched by strangers to prevent the evil eye; holy water, salt, and various powders and potions were sprinkled in and around the house to bless and protect it; older women who bore the scent of Florida Water. Curandero/Curanderas were just normal and respected members of the community. The stories of good or bad spirits visiting people in human form and malevolent spells being cast on unwary men and women were told often, usually over a cup of coffee.
My mother, who's German, also had her ways of healing illnesses or injuries (or even mundane issues) by using herbs and concoctions, as well as spell casting, which she never identified as Witchcraft or magic—it was just things she learned from her Oma, as I, in turn, learned them from her. Mother would tell me of the "May Day" celebrations in her hometown, and dancing around the Maypole as a youngster. I decided this activity was just a cultural celebration and remembered it fondly as such. Little did I know! (But God[s] forbid I should ever point out to my mother it was a Pagan celebration!)
As I grew into a teenager, I started on my own spiritual quest, trying to find my place in society. I started attending Catholic, Baptist, and Christian services, read the Bible, tried to find some sort of connection to "God" as presented by the churches. None of the services or practices moved me at all. People were telling me what the scripture said (as if they knew) and how I should act and behave. All I saw and experienced was blatant hypocrisy on the parts of the members of the various congregations and parishes, people who would shake your hand in church, but turn around and gossip, compare, complain, and belittle you. Church rules were very strict (not having anything to do with worship of "God," as far as I'm concerned). Prayers were said by rote, without any meaning. I even tried to be "born again,” but it felt so wrong because I didn't need to invite the holy spirit within; it was there all along, just waiting to be recognized. It was not the "holy spirit" of organized religion; it was honest, true, and powerful Spirit within me, the power of the God and Goddess. Born of the Universe and manifested through Earth, Air, Fire, and Water. Try telling that to the next person who tries to save your soul!
As I became an adult, the closest thing I could identify with was the "New Age movement.” This went on for years. But I was always wary of telling anyone because of the hippy-dippy, air-headed connotations attached to it. There was a wealth of information available, however, and I availed myself of every book, studied every discipline and belief system, trying to find the "TRUTH" on their printed pages. I knew there were multiple deities, but I didn't want someone else to tell me who they were supposed to be—I already had a relationship with them, although I didn't know their names.
At this point, my gift of being able to channel energy to heal began to emerge, and I began to practice it on a regular basis, as well as study every resource there was, trying to hone and polish my ability. This gift was identified by my ex-husband (born again) as being of "Satan" and therefore evil. He told me that I would go to hell if I don't repent and renounce the demon inside me. Go figure! He would have a cow if he realized just how deeply ingrained in me (and his daughter!) Witchcraft and Wicca are.
In '97, after my father died, a study of family genealogy revealed that I have a very strong Native American background. In fact, I am ¼ to ½ Native American. Learning this about my heritage, I immersed myself in Native American spirituality and beliefs and realized that many of the things my father had taught me while I was growing up had a strong basis in the beliefs and practices of his childhood. Again, no one ever really "taught" him that these things were spiritual beliefs; they just were—as I, in turn, learned them from him.
As I began to participate in the Native American community here in town, I approached all ceremonies, circles, and such with complete reverence, and it just came naturally. I could feel the connection to the Great Spirits very deeply in my soul. But still something was missing. There was still hypocrisy and back-biting going on, in which it became more important that you had your BIA identification card or if your particular tribe practiced certain rituals than whether or not you were approaching ceremony in the "right" way (walking in beauty, perfect love and perfect trust, connected to Spirit). The lack of cohesion in the community was detracting from the worship and experience of the Spirits. There was infighting between the different tribes represented instead of a spirit of inclusion and community that is so desperately needed in any belief system.
I remember the wonder and magic surrounding out-of-doors ceremony, the connection of each person to Spirit and the Spirit in one another; the homage to the moon, to the unseen "little people,” to the fire and smoke. Because many of these ceremonies were conducted on the same property as that of a wolf-rescue operation, the magic was especially evident, especially when the wolves would join in on the ceremony with their wondrous song. The results of these ceremonies were as profound as I imagine a formal Wiccan ritual is. A rose by any other name smells just as sweet.
I am older now, and I have begun a new search for my identity. I have begun to actively study Wicca and Paganism, again reading tons of books (I was not aware of any groups here IRL). It wasn't until I began doing the research that I recognized that my inherent beliefs and the practices I grew up with were detailed in the pages of many a grimoire, how-to guide, and encyclopedia on the Craft. I have learned about Spirit "the right way" for me (naturally; not being "taught" by one person or group of people as the only way to believe or worship). I am learning ceremony and ritual, but to me, that learning not as important as experiencing Spirit every day in everything I do. I look forward to someday finding a coven (or even just a Pagan group) to belong to so that I might participate and learn ritual and ceremony, but a group in which I won't be considered an outcast because I do not follow one strict discipline or school of Wicca or a certain Pantheon of deities. Maybe that’s just wishful thinking, since I seem to be identifying a pattern in Wicca, as well, that seems to be gearing up to be a full-blown holy war.
Who's to say a natural Witch is not a Wiccan? Who's to say that the Spirit within me is not real nor "right” because I don't practice an "accepted" form or schedule of ritual? Can't we all just get along and let Spirit move us in the direction of inclusion for all? Who gave us the right to judge others, as we as a community are being judged? With that mindset, what makes us any different from any other religious belief system? We all follow the path that is natural to us, and each path is different while leading to the same end. Who are we (or any other religion) to decide that we follow the "One True Path” and that all others are not only wrong, but will not enjoy Summerland, Heaven, Valhalla, Happy Hunting Ground, or any other ideal of an afterlife (or even get there) when we pass through the veil? We are all of one Spirit, no matter what the road. We should begin to act as such.
Copyright: wolfbait, 2006
Location: San Antonio, Texas
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