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)
Gods Who Live In My House
Why the 'Redneck Pagan'?
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 Clichés
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.
Being Singled Out - Is It Good For Me?
Article ID: 10866
Age Group: Adult
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Posted: August 13th. 2006
Times Viewed: 3,129
If you were singled out, what would you do? If you could go back in time and prevent it from happening...would you? My first instinct is to say, "YES!" But then I have to think. Would I be the person I am today without a struggle or two along the way?
I was raised an Army brat, moving from base to base when my stepfather got reassigned. I was also raised in an agnostic home; I went to church for the first time when I was ten, and that was with a friend. Needless to say, I didn't have a religion or a hometown to dig my roots into.
That changed for me in Kentucky. I met a high school girl when I was in middle school, and she borrowed a book on Wicca from a friend of a friend. It was a struggle, but from that moment I was a Witch. My first confrontation was with a friend's parents; I was a Witch, so I wasn't a good influence. Forget my straight A's, forget my responsible personality, forget my quiet and calm demeanor. I was a bad influence, and I needed to go.
Another problem was my stepfather. As I said, we lived in an agnostic home. But my stepfather was more like a militant agnostic, as in, "I don't know what to believe, and you don't either!" To him, Wicca and the like are stupid religions. Since I've started studying, he's decided to have a fit about once every six months. The last fit was about my visiting Pagan websites; to resolve it, I started deleting the Internet History. Before that, it was my choice of friends; that wasn't resolved, since we moved a few months later.
Luckily, I didn't face that kind of situation often. Military students tend to be more accepting of differences, so I was usually okay... until I moved to Germany in my sophomore year. That was the year when I was pushed out of the broom closet.
It was in World History. We were studying the part of history where Christianity became a factor, and my teacher especially loved that part. He'd talk and talk about certain Bible stories that I'd never learned, which made me uncomfortable, but I was too shy to speak up and say so. During one of the class discussions, he asked anyone who wasn't a Christian to raise their hands. Now I had two choices: I could sit quietly and let him go on and on about the Bible and Jesus, or I could take a chance and raise my hand. What would you have done?
I raised my hand, along with three other students. The teacher asked about two girls in the front row first; they were both Catholic, and he said it was close enough to the same thing, so they put their hands back down. Then he asked the guy sitting at the front of my row; his parents were athiests, so he was agnostic. Again, my teacher thought that was close enough, so the guy put his hand down too.
My heart was beating like mad when he finally asked me what I was. "I'm a Wiccan, " I muttered as I wished every eye in the room wasn't focused on me. I'd always been a shy girl, and I was still the new girl in class, so I was very uncomfortable. Unfortunately, that didn't deter my teacher. He asked me to stand up and explain just what a Wiccan was. I stood and rambled out a few basics: I believe in magic, a God and Goddess, I love and respect nature, and I believe in harming none. My teacher then asked just why I'd ever believe in magic. What was my proof that it existed?
If it had been a year later, I would've had dozens of wonderful answers to choose from. But again, I was shy, young, and new. I just wanted to sit down. I honestly don't remember what I muttered, but it seemed to please him enough to leave me alone.
Being singled out was horrible. It's a terrifying experience, no matter who you are. But it's why I've changed in the few years since that incident.
I joined the GSA (Gay-Straight Alliance) my senior year to speak out for the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered people. In the GSA I helped answer questions that students had about being different and about their rights. I also helped a few lesbian friends stand up for themselves to the school's biased administration; they fought for the right to go to the Homecoming dance and Prom as couples. I started wearing my pentacle necklace every day, grateful for every question I could answer and every misunderstanding I could correct. When I got my first job, I also helped local Pagans feel a little less alone when they came to my register. Networking as a military Pagan is tough, so I was glad to help.
And now, as an adult attending college, I take every opportunity I can to explain Wicca and Paganism to others. I've written three essays on being Wiccan, along with two PowerPoint presentations. I'll have further opportunities this coming fall when I take a class on speech writing and presentation. On a smaller scale, I also explain Wicca to every peer who happens to get into a conversation with me.
It may not seem like a lot, but I'm trying to do my part to stand up for myself and others, to be counted. So if I had the power to go back and undo those events in which I was singled out and ridiculed, would I? As tough as they were, I'd have to say no. I think each struggle was a learning experience needed for my personal and spiritual growth. And maybe it'd be good for you, too.
Location: Killeen, Texas
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