Curiosités Arcanes::Paganisme::Wicca

“There are some things, after all, that Sally Owens knows for certain: Always throw spilled salt over your left shoulder. Keep rosemary by your garden gate. Add pepper to your mashed potatoes. Plant roses and lavender, for luck. Fall in love whenever you can.” – Alice Hoffman (Practical Magic)

wicca
n.  a form of modern paganism, especially a tradition founded in England in the
mid 20th century and claiming its origins in pre-Christian religions

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I grew-up Episcopalian, and by that I mean my parents were Episcopalian so I was raised as such. I loved showing-off my burgeoning fashion sense every Sunday by including black patent leather shoes, white gloves, and matching hat to whatever über-cute ensemble I put together.
(I still have a passion for black patent leather shoes, and own several pairs of non-white gloves. Hats…not so much. I detest hat hair…)

But outside of getting a new Easter outfit every year, traditional religion never did much for me.

My spiritual connection leaned toward nature and the supernatural – two things I view as being symbiotic. Compatible. This meant I accepted as fact that there was magic all around us. It also meant I was a little different from other kids.

Nowadays, alternative beliefs are more mainstream than when I was young. Sure, we had shows like Bewitched – but the magic was played for laughs. I wish there were Monster High dolls or shows like Charmed and Sabrina the Teenage Witch when I was growing-up. It would’ve made things a lot easier…

But back then, outside of Hollywood’s depiction of witches and witchcraft, I wasn’t aware there were (other) people who lived their lives a bit differently from the rest. Who saw things the way I did. I didn’t know there was a name for this ideology until 1982, when my best friend at the time gave me a book by Erica Jong.

Although the book is heavily dosed with the words “witch” and “witchcraft”, it really is all about Wicca. The Craft. In it, Ms. Jong discusses everything from the Mother Goddess and her connection to the Witch Archetype, to Paganism and Christianity, to practical applications of magic. Her dedication even included “to the memory of Poochkin, best friend, familiar“.

In addition to some very positive and female-affirming prose, Witches is interspersed with poetry and beautifully illustrated by Joseph A. Smith.

Witches is still in publication today.

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There appears to be quite a lot of disagreement on what constitutes Wicca, as opposed to Witchcraft. Some folks see no distinction between the two. Here’s what Merriam-Webster has to say:

witchcraft
n.  the use of sorcery or magic; communication with the devil or with a familiar;
an adherent of Wicca

witch
n.  one that is credited with usually malignant supernatural powers – especially a
woman practicing usually black witchcraft, often with the aid of a devil or familiar
v.  to affect injuriously with witchcraft

Even the dictionary attaches Wicca to Witchcraft…

When you compare the definition of Witchcraft to that of Wicca,however, the glaring difference is that the latter is considered a form of Paganism, whereas the former is not. Still, I wanted to make a definite distinction between the two.

Under this section I’m including all the accoutrements, spells, and whatnot used by Witches and Pagans alike, but I’m limiting Wicca to what’s referred to as “white magic”. Black magic (death spells, curses/hexes, sorcery, etc.) will be discussed under the section entitled The Dark Arts.

★ Accoutrements
★ Coleur
★ Metaphysical Index

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These Eight words the Rede fulfill:

"An Ye Harm None, Do What Ye Will"

(Full Version)