Sunday, May 25, 2014

The Word Games We Pagans Play (Old blog post)

The word games we Pagans play...A few years back I stumbled across the AntiRavenWolf crowd. I stated to rethink some things because of it. Around the same time I found the "Keep Wicca Traditional" campaign. So I just started to think about where I stood in all of this.

Now with Silver, I have to agree her history is questionable at best. I suppose when I read "Teen Witch" I took the lie to your parents thing as an if someone needed to they would have anyway.... I know I "lied" to by boyfriends parents (who are now my in laws) because they didnt agree with it, actually I ended up "missing" some books that I lent to my now hubby.... They were room searchers. Now its just something we dont talk about I let my in laws live in a state of ignorant bliss when it comes to that. Thats NOT to say that we dont talk about religion from time to time, I just dont label what I believe. Which is where the word games come into play. I personally really enjoyed the SRW books at the times that I read them, at that time I considered myself more or less Wiccan, however. Now I am way past the 101 stage that I dont really look at the books that I do have on the shelf. I can understand why people, particularly parents would not care for her. I just filter all OPINIONS that authors give, the facts as well and I never limited myself to just one author, even if they were a favorite. To me saying NOT to read person X is just as bad as reading only person X. Advising someone to take person X's writings with a grain (or spoonful) of salt is fine however.

The keep Wicca Traditional campaign states that ONLY an initiated Gardnerians can use the term Wicca or Wiccan. Then there is the Dictionary term (I think it is Old Oxford English) that states a Wicca as a male practitioner of magic. Then there is the group that says that eclectics are a "Neo-Wicca" because they differ so much on the core of Gardner's teachings. THEN there are the Non-Wiccan witches (which is where I consider myself to be) you get a whole new list of words and it can be VERY confusing! Because you get British Traditional Witches, not to be confused with British Traditional Wicca. Gardner claimed that his coven had lasted in secret for generations in secret, evidence points to the contrary however. Gardner's Wicca has influence from high ceremonial and other sources. And as far as anyone can tell no such organization ever existed. On the flip side of the argument is why would there be any evidence? These people were, after all, trying to HIDE there practices! The fact remains that there is extensive proof of OTHER witchcraft practices. Truth be told there would not be proof of Gardners tradition anyway because as he published his non fiction book he was oath bound so he did say that he substituted when he had to.

Now I understand the need for the distinction and using a different word. There ARE differences between what is known as "Wicca" and those who are "Non-Wiccan" NWs do NOT necessarily have religion linked to their practices. Wiccans do. Confusion often comes because many authors use the terms as synonyms and are all-inclusive. In many cases they should be because if they truly believe that a Wiccan is an unbroken pre-Christian line, OR if you believe that Wicca is practitioner of witchcraft. Many books that I have read have Feri Tradition, Stregheria, and Kitchen/hedge Witchery listed as Wiccan Traditions. While some practitioners of those particular paths would consider themselves Non Wiccans. But Non-Wiccan in the area that they are not connected with Gardner. A lot is left open for argument on all sides of the camp, but where does one end and the other begin?
I don't even want to begin with the "isms" and types of "Theisms" out there! It all can get very confusing and you can easily end up with an incredible headache. I begin to wonder just how many people actually know the labels that they themselves have.
Posted by MadHouseWitch at 12:41 PM