Articles/Essays From Pagans
August 31st. 2014 ...
Coven vs. Solitary
A Strange Waking Dream
August 24th. 2014 ...
Thoughts on Cultural and Spiritual Appropriation
The Pagan Cleric
A Gathering of Sorcerers (A Strange Tale)
August 17th. 2014 ...
To Know, to Will, to Dare...
On Grief: Beacons of Light in the Shadows
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You Have to Believe We Are Magic...
July 27th. 2014 ...
Did I Just Draw Down the Moon?
Astrological Ages and the Great Astrological End-Time Cycle
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July 20th. 2014 ...
Being an Underage Wiccan
Greed, Power, Witches, and the Inquisition
Malleus Maleficarum - The Hammer of the Witches
Thoughts on Ghost Hunting
July 13th. 2014 ...
A World Of Witchcraft: Belief Is Only The Beginning...
From Christian to Pagan (Part III)
My Wiccan Ways...
July 6th. 2014 ...
Keys: Opening the Portals into Other Worlds
The Lore of the Door
Leaves of Love
June 29th. 2014 ...
What Does the Bible Say About Witches and Pagans?
Are You My Familiar ?
Invocations of the God and Goddess
Results Magic and the Moral Compass
Everything's Alright, Yes: Mary Magdalene
June 22nd. 2014 ...
Witchcraft vs. Religion
Christianity and Paganism: Why All Of the Fighting?
June 15th. 2014 ...
Becoming Your Own Wise One
Canine Familiars: Role of the Alpha
June 8th. 2014 ...
Moral Relativism and Wicca
Paganism in Cebu, Philippines
June 1st. 2014 ...
Rediscovering My Pagan Faith
13 Keys: The Wisdom of Chokmah
May 25th. 2014 ...
Some Differences Between Priestesses and Witches: Duties and Trials
Awakening to our Celestial Nature (A Free 8-Day Course)
How to Work With Your Muse
10 Things I Love about my Sacred Work as a Public Witch
May 18th. 2014 ...
Finding the God (From Christian to Pagan -Part II)
The Medea Within Us All
Visits from the Departed
May 11th. 2014 ...
Breaking the Law of Return
Karma and Sin
Mental and Emotional Balance- I CAN Have it!
The Sin Concept
May 4th. 2014 ...
When to Let Go...When to Hold On
Goddessy: Sorceress Speaks On Beauty
Embracing my Inner Goddess through Belly Dance
April 27th. 2014 ...
Mental Illness in the Pagan Community
World Crisis: Awaken Witches and Take Action
Being Pagan, Being Bipolar
"Earth Day" Is A Pagan Conspiracy!
April 20th. 2014 ...
Six Rules for Safer Pagan Sex: A Guide
Safety: Let's Shift Our Focus
Morality and Controversy in the Craft
A Pagan Perspective on Easter
The Star Child
April 13th. 2014 ...
Magick and Consequences: My Experience with Sigils
Being a Worrisome Witch
Don't Talk Yourself Out of Trying Something New!
What to Do When the Spell/Ritual Flops
April 6th. 2014 ...
The Elements and the Quarters
Dark Moon Scry: Aries 2014
How the Wheel of the Year Works “Down Under”
13 Keys: The Understanding of Binah
March 30th. 2014 ...
Manifesting the Dream: On Religious Organizations, Pagan Abbeys and our Order
True Meaning of Community
Thoughts on Unverified Personal Gnosis
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March 23rd. 2014 ...
Spirituality and Social Change
The First Step to Anywhere!
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
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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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