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#31 Alsie R.

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Posted 02 May 2004 - 07:08 PM

egad we've run into another problem in the group. we can't come up with a coven name and we's all outs of ideas (me trying to sound like an uneducated hick). does anyone have any suggestions or ideas on how to come up with one?
A long, long time agoI can still rememberHow that music used to make me smileAnd I knew if I had my chanceThat I could make those people danceAnd maybe they'd be happy for a whileAmerican Pie, Don McLean~ carpe diem, seize the day, make your lives extraordinary.-dead poet's society i eat emo kids for breakfast. with french fried hash browns.

#32 Ectoplazzum

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Posted 02 May 2004 - 07:51 PM

Ecto-

When I learned about the history about Wicca, my source, which now I couldn't recite if my life depended on it, related that Wicca and witchcraft were the result of centuries of women who were basically midwives and had considerable knowledge of homeopathic remedies as well as horticulture practices passed down from centuries upon centuries of generations.  The women being of Pagan origins is how the resulting practice of witchcraft came about.  Why it came about was that in those days illness was not about microscopic organisms that invaded the body and made people sick but because of evil spirits. So the knowledge of plant and primative medicine eventually combined into rituals now known as witchcraft or Wicca. A good healthy dose of superstition helped launch the practice of spells and such just as an added measure to make sure the stuff worked.  Witch is acutally a very offensive word and was the result of the fears of men (the male species) being intimidated by women who knew how to cure ailments and some simple diseases with their knowledge of plants and regimes.  Then throw in a little bit of ritual and boom it was now a BAD thing to have one of these people around.

Now, what I learned above, is that all wrong?  



Witchcraft and Wicca are two completely separate things.  I think that's a major part of the confusion today about people saying that they're Wiccan when, in reality, they are witches.  Wiccans ARE witches, however Wicca is a religion that incorporates witchcraft into it.  Witchcraft itself can be practiced by anyone, whether they are Wiccan or not.  The words witchcraft and Wicca are not interchangeable by any means.  Witchcraft is an umbrella term.  Keep in mind there are also those who do magick who are not witches, but mages.

It used to be that most towns had a hedgewitch.  She was the person who everyone went to for remedies, or for solutions to problems with relationships, problems getting pregnant, etc.  Hedgewitches relied primarily on herbs and potions made from them to affect cures on people or to do spells for whatever they needed to have done.  

Village witches were usually women, but that doesn't mean that no men were ever witches.  People usually call male witches "warlocks", however that's not an accurate term.  Male witches are still called witches.  A warlock by definition is an "oathbreaker", therefore women can also be warlocks.  In some traditions today, the men do refer to themselves as warlocks, but this is pretty rare and men call themselves witches just as women do.  Witchcraft is just an umbrella term to cover it all.

If you are interested in concentrating on a path that is dominated by women, research Dianic Wicca.  Witchvox.com can probably point you in the direction of groups in your area that you can contact to see about becoming a student.  Although you do find the occasional male in a Dianic coven, they are few and far between and some covens have strict "females only" policies.  

As far as "witch" being an offensive word, that's not really true.  "Witch" is simply derived from "Wicce", which means "wise one."  It is used in derrogatory ways by those who don't know the difference, but most modern witches freely call themselves witches and are not offended by it.  I have found that being offended at being called a witch is a phenomenon that is exhibited by dilettantes who simply dabble in witchcraft because it is the current fad, who have a "more-persecuted-than-thou" complex, who drive around with "Remember The Burning Times" bumper stickers.

For the most part, what you said above isn't really true.  I'm not knocking whoever told you that or where you learned it from, just saying it's not accurate.  I hope you understand.  :)

Elle

#33 hawkerdriver

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 05:31 AM

What part wasn't true?  


Because I went and dug up one of the books I had read over concerning this back in college:

Witches, Midwives, and Nurses; A History of Women Healers
by Barbara Ehrenreich.

Here's something that would sum up PART of the history of Witchcraft real well:  www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0912670134/ref=sib_dp_pt/102-8636564-8144115#reader-page.

Now, Wicca is the religion that has emerged in the 20th century but is not necessarily the ancient form of witchcraft that was practiced that came out of paganism and herbology, is that what you're saying?  
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#34 hawkerdriver

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 06:39 AM

I'm not interested in becoming a Wiccan. I just like to understand other religions so I can understand  other view points and other people in general.  I like information.  But more important to me is the cause or HISTORY of how and why these various beliefs systems came to be.  I spend time studying Judism because this is the basis of Christianity.  I find it helps to really understand the message of Christianity.  But I also feel one cannot understand or know the truisms of a faith unless you know the history of that faith. The history is how that faith evolved.

Paganism is also something I've been looking into the history of.  Which had lead me to a more anthropology endeavor than I first thought.  
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#35 Vampchick21

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 06:48 AM

What part wasn't true?  


Because I went and dug up one of the books I had read over concerning this back in college:

Witches, Midwives, and Nurses; A History of Women Healers
by Barbara Ehrenreich.

Here's something that would sum up PART of the history of Witchcraft real well:  www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0912670134/ref=sib_dp_pt/102-8636564-8144115#reader-page.

Now, Wicca is the religion that has emerged in the 20th century but is not necessarily the ancient form of witchcraft that was practiced that came out of paganism and herbology, is that what you're saying?  



:)  Wicca being an ancient religion isn't true.  You are right, it is a 20th century religion.  It was developed in the 1950's by Gerald Gardner.  Has some elements (among others) of Witchcraft, but that's not the sole base of it, nor the be all end all.  Witchcraft however, is as far as I can tell an ancient ongoing thing that has changed over time, since magic is the same age as humanity.

Witch does not always equal Wiccan.  I'm Witchy, but not Wiccan.

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#36 hawkerdriver

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 08:05 AM

I had made the mistake of equating Wicca with Witchcraft.  So I learned something! :)  They are seperate however, just to make sure I understand, Wicca does incorporate some witchcraft, right?  
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#37 Vampchick21

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 09:05 AM

Wicca does indeed incorporate Witchcraft.  :)

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#38 aloha_spirit

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Posted 03 May 2004 - 11:16 PM

In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, there are actually two initiations.

Everyone (including those of other faiths) are invited to visit our weekly Sunday Services in chapels.

The first initiation is baptism and confirmation as an official member of the church.  Batpisms may be performed almost anywhere provided the water is deep enough.

The second initiation takes place in our temples.  Oaths are made and deeper doctrine is taught.  I imagine the oath-bound covens to be similar.

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#39 MoonChild

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 02:53 AM

Raven hair and ruby lips
sparks fly from her finger tips
Echoed voices in the night
she's a restless spirit on an endless flight
wooo hooo witchy woman, see how
high she flies
woo hoo witchy woman she got
the moon in her eye
She held me spellbound in the night
dancing shadows and firelight
crazy laughter in another
room and she drove herself to madness
with a silver spoon
woo hoo witchy woman see how high she flies
woo hoo witchy woman she got the moon in her eye
Well I know you want a lover,
let me tell your brother, she's been sleeping
in the Devil's bed.
And there's some rumors going round
someone's underground
she can rock you in the nighttime
'til your skin turns red
woo hoo witchy woman
see how high she flies
woo hoo witchy woman
she got the moon in her eye
....... Thank You EAGLES ;D
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#40 Ectoplazzum

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 07:55 AM

What part wasn't true?  


Because I went and dug up one of the books I had read over concerning this back in college:

Witches, Midwives, and Nurses; A History of Women Healers
by Barbara Ehrenreich.

Here's something that would sum up PART of the history of Witchcraft real well:  www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0912670134/ref=sib_dp_pt/102-8636564-8144115#reader-page.

Now, Wicca is the religion that has emerged in the 20th century but is not necessarily the ancient form of witchcraft that was practiced that came out of paganism and herbology, is that what you're saying?  



Witchcraft is a very widespread topic.  The healing/midwife/nurse/herbalist thing is only a small part of it.  Not all witches were women.  There were men also, and depending on what type of magick or witchcraft you are talking about, sometimes it is practiced ONLY by men.  A perfect example of this is that one of the most famous grimoirs in history was written by Pope Gregory in (I think) the 13th century.  Many farmers also did magick to help their crops grow and help their farms prosper.  Lots of men were involved with doing what is now known as "folk magick", it wasn't limited to just women.  Old world witches, however, each practiced their own brand of witchcraft.  Spells were a very personal thing and most were solitary because it wasn't safe to let just anyone in general know you were a witch.  

Also, with regard to Paganism, while many people do place Paganism and witchcraft arm in arm, the two are totally different.  One can be a Pagan and not be a witch, just as they can be a witch and not be Pagan.  There are very few sects of Christianity however that accept witchcraft or magick as acceptable, Santeria being the most prominent.  To most others, witchcraft or magick of any kind is considered an abomination.

What you said about Wicca is absolutely correct.  Wicca is a religion that was begun in the early 20th century in England, and made its way to the United States around 1940.  All Wiccans are witches, but far from all witches are Wiccan.  Some of the magick that is practiced by Wiccans comes from the old witches of England, however Wiccans also do spells that come from other cultures as well.  I know Wiccans who have asked for spells and who have shared spells with me.  What makes someone a Wiccan is not the type of magick they do, but the type of rituals they do, and not being an initiate I don't have any information on inner-court rituals.  As far as the ancient stuff that was done, there's not a lot of information available because it was so dangerous to be considered a witch, most of the stuff wasn't written down.    :)


Elle

#41 Ectoplazzum

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 08:09 AM

I had made the mistake of equating Wicca with Witchcraft.  So I learned something! :)  They are seperate however, just to make sure I understand, Wicca does incorporate some witchcraft, right?  



Believe me, you're not alone.  Many people think that Wicca and witchcraft are one and the same, like Wicca is just another somehow more politically correct word for witchcraft.  I think this is how so many arguements get started when someone says they are a Wiccan and, when they can't say they are initiated and someone tells them "then you're not a Wiccan", they get insulted because they think someone is trying to tell them that they're not really a witch.  They're as much of a witch as any Wiccan, they're just not a Wiccan.   :D

Just try to remember these:  All Wiccans do magick.  Not all Pagans do magick.  All Wiccans are witches, but not all witches are Wiccan.  And not all Pagans are witches.  And not all Pagans do magick.   :)

Elle

#42 anasuya

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 10:33 AM

That reminds me of that "Who is on third base?" comedy bit. Good Goddess that can get confusing for someone who isn't familiar with any of these paths. lol.

Ana
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#43 Ectoplazzum

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 09:03 PM

egad we've run into another problem in the group. we can't come up with a coven name and we's all outs of ideas (me trying to sound like an uneducated hick). does anyone have any suggestions or ideas on how to come up with one?



There's a book called "The Complete Book of Magical Names."  I can't remember who the author is right off hand, but the whole book is nothing but names from history, literature (fact and fiction), mythology, etc.  It has a whole big list that's a couple of pages long of coven names.  Some of them are serious, some of them are silly, some are creative.  You might be able to find something there.  Here is a site that has a chart of names on it (take 1 from column A, 1 from column B, etc.) that might be useful to you in case you can't find the book.   :)
http://www.willowstar.org/history.html

Elle

#44 Alsie R.

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Posted 05 May 2004 - 02:52 PM

now i'm thinking about going solitary with wicca. the whole coven thing isn't working too well right now. dana's mom decided she's gotta be christian so she's out and dev and i dissagree on some things so...does anyone have any advice for a solitary practicioner?
A long, long time agoI can still rememberHow that music used to make me smileAnd I knew if I had my chanceThat I could make those people danceAnd maybe they'd be happy for a whileAmerican Pie, Don McLean~ carpe diem, seize the day, make your lives extraordinary.-dead poet's society i eat emo kids for breakfast. with french fried hash browns.

#45 Ectoplazzum

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Posted 05 May 2004 - 02:59 PM

now i'm thinking about going solitary with wicca. the whole coven thing isn't working too well right now. dana's mom decided she's gotta be christian so she's out and dev and i dissagree on some things so...does anyone have any advice for a solitary practicioner?



I think it's a great idea!  

Personally, unless you are joining a structured, well-run, well-established coven, you're much better off going solitary, even if only for a while.  You never know, the opportunity to join a well-established coven may present itself one day, and you might change your mind and decide to join them, but I have found that being a solitary gives you SO much more freedom to explore and try new things without having to get the go-ahead from everyone else.

An excellent book for you to read in this case would be "Wicca for the Solitary Practitioner", by Scott Cunningham.  It has tons of good information in it.  The only thing you need to bear in mind is that where Scott refers to "Wicca" he's talking about neo-Wicca.  Naturally you won't find any inner-court Wiccan material in it.  But other than that, it's a great guideline for a new solitary witch.   :)

Elle




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