The other day my seven year old had a bedtime story about a witch. She decided that she loved the story so much that she was now a witch. I made a joke; “What, you read one book and now you’re an expert?” “Yep”, she replies...
We all know people like this, right? They read one book or watch one film -- you know the one I mean! ;) and they think they’re an expert, that’s their job done, they’re now Pagan and no more is needed.
If you are one of these “witches” then what the heck, dude?
There are organisations all over this world dedicated to the seemingly impossible task of getting Pagans taken seriously and, guess what; you’re fucking it all up!
When you go out there, telling folk you can simply wave a magic wand to make things happen and generally acting like a delusional, teenaged attention whore, you’re making those of us who take our faith seriously look as ridiculous as you.
Now, I don’t like to belittle the beliefs of others but your actions are belittling mine. You’re making a mockery of everything I’ve spent years trying to accomplish!
There is, however, a very simple way to remedy this. Pick up a book. Or Two. Three. Four... A whole library! There are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of Pagan authors out there just begging you to pick up their books and lose yourself in their research and thoughts, to compare their experiences with your own, to learn from them and even let them learn from you!
Being Pagan isn’t something you do; it’s something you are. It’s a lifelong journey that takes over your very being and opens you to the world around and within you in a miraculous yet inherently natural way...
The Hollywood version of “Witchcraft/Paganism” that you claim to practice is, frankly, insulting and immature and it makes the life of people who try to get us taken seriously, even harder!
Now, this may seem like I’m being overly harsh and perhaps I am but even the Love and Light Brigade can only take so much before they lose their temper... And I’m far from a member of that group!
This website has a fantastic list of books but there are even more out there for you to access! Ignorance may be bliss for the ignorant but for the rest of us; it’s a pain in the ass!
Witch Bitch rant over...
With the Solstice upon us I’ve been reflecting a lot on my faith and how it’s affected my life. I began identifying as Pagan when I was around thirteen and I have to admit, and I know others did this even if they don’t admit it, that at first, my family and friends were entirely justified when they said it was just another way for me to get attention or to shock people.
I went around telling people I was a witch and I could do spells and I had a magic wand and all sorts of other things they made me look as ridiculous as I wanted to look! It did me no favours but what troubled teenager ever does anything right the first time around, right?
It wasn’t until I was pregnant with my oldest, almost dead (literally!) and bed bound that I started to really think about my faith in any real way. I was confronted by my own mortality and it terrified me. The thought I was about to die, my baby could die, and I didn’t know anything about anything. What did I believe? Who was I? Did I still have the time to figure all that out?
Well, it turned out that I did! Time and to spare, it would seem! Ten years on and I finally feel that I know who I am, spiritually if in no other way. I think I like the person I am! And who I am right now, a lot of that is down to my beliefs.
The more I researched, the more of myself I found. One of my favourite things about being Pagan is that, if done correctly, it’s mostly a journey into the deepest parts of you. Into your mind, your soul, your heart. If you don’t discover more about yourself, you need to re-evaluate the path you’ve taken and the way you’re walking it.
I highly recommend a good tarot deck for this. Tarot, for me, isn’t about divination, it’s another way to discover as much about yourself as possible. Everyone has their own preference, I personalyl couldn’t do without my Wildwood Tarot deck. It takes the reader on a journey into oneself that truly must be experienced to be believed.
I suppose with these ramblings what I’m trying to say is that if you’re going to do something like this, do it fully! Don’t just read one book or one blog and think that’s enough because to do that is a disservice to yourself.
Since fully embracing my faith I have become a person, not the half person I felt I was before. I now have a purpose, a calling. I’m not saying that you have to have a faith to find yourself, some people don’t... But you’ll never know yourself truly until you look at all sides of yourself and if one side of you is Pagan, one book, one open circle, one Pagan Pride march or two aren’t going to help you discover your true self and everything that Paganism has to offer!
You are the most important person in your life because without you, you have no life! And it’s ok to be selfish sometimes, especially if your time is spent discovering yourself, especially especially (yes, that was deliberate, I’m trying to be cute, is it working?) if you find something new about yourself that you like!
We live in a world where loving or even liking yourself is seen as conceited, at the same time as being told that we should love ourselves! Such contradictions aren’t just confusing and hypocritical but they’re not very helpful when we’re trying to discover ourselves.
So, shut the world out, go on your journey of self discovery and just wait and see what life has in store for you on the other side.
Join the Witch Path Forward Facebook community. (Click the icon).