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Author Topic: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)  (Read 11814 times)

endlessGalaxy

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #30 on: July 19, 2014, 08:49:46 pm »
Quote from: Voren;152705
The term I always use for myself has; though more of an umbrella term, always been "spiritualist." It covers just about everything I believe, everything I do (in regards to religious/spiritual activities), and every aspect of such in my daily life. I can understand why you wouldn't like the word "witch" would be undesirable, not just because of the way Hollywood portrays such, not to mention all the stereotyping and negative connotations that also may come with it. I'm sure you can find some sort of terminology that would work for you. I don't know that this helped at all, but I thought I'd put my two cents in.


This!  People take a much better view on "spiritualism" than "witchcraft"!  Spiritualism encompasses so much, it great to use as a cop out when you're not sure how the other person is going to react.  I'm usually pretty vague when describing my beliefs to people.  Pick your battles, like my grandma used to say.

Like the OP, a lot of my beliefs mirror Wicca, but I also don't like a lot of it, and I just hate organized religion.  I was raised Catholic, so anytime dogma crops up I feel stifled and run!  I'm a cult leader's worst nightmare.

missgraceless

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #31 on: July 19, 2014, 08:54:07 pm »
Quote from: Aster Breo;153343
On TC, the definition of "pagan" that we generally use is non-Abrahamic AND self identifies as pagan.

While there are certainly people who are Buddhist or Hindu and who self identify as pagan, my understanding is that the term is not usually applied to those religions by outsiders.

Quote from: Sage;153344
Especially considering the fact that there's a history of white Christian colonialists (and later religious scholars) pointing at ethnic traditions and calling them "pagan." Self identification is important when using labels.

Thanks for the clarification!
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Freesia

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #32 on: July 20, 2014, 12:03:02 am »
Quote from: Voren;152705
The term I always use for myself has; though more of an umbrella term, always been "spiritualist." It covers just about everything I believe, everything I do (in regards to religious/spiritual activities), and every aspect of such in my daily life.

 
I say "I'm spiritual," but some people get offensive over that and ask or demand what that means. My reply is that I believe in spirits and leave the conversation at that. I am not one for explaining my beliefs to others where I live as I do not wish to be dragged into a spontaneous public prayer. Which happens where I live, a lot.

Jack

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #33 on: July 20, 2014, 12:27:22 am »
Quote from: missgraceless;153339
And apparently my phone autocorrected "Kemetic" to Kinetic. Sorry.

 
I like the idea of a Kinetic Pagan. I expect it would mean offering exercise/running to gods like Thor or Artemis?
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SunflowerP

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #34 on: July 20, 2014, 12:47:18 am »
Quote from: Jack;153379
I like the idea of a Kinetic Pagan. I expect it would mean offering exercise/running to gods like Thor or Artemis?

 
Hmm. Seems to me it could mean almost anything that was very active, practical, and hands-on.

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Sage

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #35 on: July 20, 2014, 12:49:28 am »
Quote from: Jack;153379
I like the idea of a Kinetic Pagan. I expect it would mean offering exercise/running to gods like Thor or Artemis?

 
Are Kinetic Pagans at odd with Potential Pagans, who mostly lay on the couch and wait for things to happen? ;)
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I shall embrace the light. I shall weather the storm.
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What you have created, no one can tear asunder.

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Freesia

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #36 on: July 20, 2014, 01:29:04 am »
Quote from: Sage;153381
Are Kinetic Pagans at odd with Potential Pagans, who mostly lay on the couch and wait for things to happen? ;)

 
Sadly I've been a Potential Pagan for too many years. I would like to be a Kinetic Pagan now.

Queen of Wands

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #37 on: July 20, 2014, 03:43:58 am »
Quote from: BrighidsAura;153308
On the other hand, I went to Target the other day and was wearing a very small and dainty pentagram necklace and the employee asked me if I was Jewish. Reluctant to say "no, I'm Wiccan" (since I don't identify as a Wiccan), I said "No, I'm a witch." He was quiet for a minute and said "a witch?" and I smiled and said yes. Then he said ok and started to walk away to find the thing I was shopping for. I asked if I shoudl follow him and he said "Sure but dont cast a spell on me." Needless to say, I felt a little mocked.

I think the most neutral of terms to use is "pagan" in this case. A pagan is such a huge umbrella term and--if you arent of any Abrahamic faith--then it's a true one. People know what "Paganism" is for the most part or have at least heard of it and, if they havent, its a learning opportunity for them and you get to tell them it means what you want it to mean. Since it's not a limited term, it doesnt need a limited answer.

 

My fear indeed! Yes - Pagan is a safe word to self-identify with, to start with, certainly.

Quote from: Freesia;153386
Sadly I've been a Potential Pagan for too many years. I would like to be a Kinetic Pagan now.

 
I too, am making the jump back from potential to Kinetic! And I think I may have a word in mind...Spiritualist.

Quote from: endlessGalaxy;153356
This!  People take a much better view on "spiritualism" than "witchcraft"!  Spiritualism encompasses so much...Like the OP, a lot of my beliefs mirror Wicca, but I also don't like a lot of it, and I just hate organized religion.


My prior knowledge of Spiritualism is limited to what I know from having lived in Western New York - so the Fox sisters and the Victorian fascination with the occult mostly! But I've started exploring it seriously as a possible answer and I'm liking it. Especially since the early Spiritualists were very pro-civil rights :) But , although I've never called myself a medium, am I not doing so by using tarot? It may be the answer (or "an" answer) and requires a bit more reflection than necessary at midnight but I appreciate all the voices so far who have contributed to this discussion and search.


Quote from: BrighidsAura;153308
On a side note: what beautiful descriptions! You are a lovely writer.

 
And thank you, thank you, thank you :)

Aster Breo

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #38 on: July 20, 2014, 02:09:07 pm »
Quote from: Queen of Wands;153392
Yes - Pagan is a safe word to self-identify with, to start with, certainly.

I'm not sure I agree with this.  Whether it's "safe" to publicly identify as pagan depends on the situation -- where you are, who you're talking to, etc.  There are plenty of people who think pagan = Satanist or similar nonsense.
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Queen of Wands

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #39 on: July 20, 2014, 02:14:43 pm »
Quote from: Aster Breo;153422
I'm not sure I agree with this.  Whether it's "safe" to publicly identify as pagan depends on the situation -- where you are, who you're talking to, etc.  There are plenty of people who think pagan = Satanist or similar nonsense.

 
Perhaps not always publicly - I did say "self-identify", implied privately :)

missgraceless

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #40 on: July 20, 2014, 03:42:50 pm »
Quote from: Jack;153379
I like the idea of a Kinetic Pagan. I expect it would mean offering exercise/running to gods like Thor or Artemis?

Quote from: Sage;153381
Are Kinetic Pagans at odd with Potential Pagans, who mostly lay on the couch and wait for things to happen? ;)

Quote from: Freesia;153386
Sadly I've been a Potential Pagan for too many years. I would like to be a Kinetic Pagan now.

Bahahahahaah. Is this now A Thing? To be Kinetic or Potential?

And I'm unfortunately a Potential Pagan as well.
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Micheál

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #41 on: July 20, 2014, 04:52:54 pm »
Quote from: Daecon;152703
Pagan, Neopagan (my own preferred term) and Wiccan all describe the religion and its rituals.  "Witch" and especially "witchcraft" imply the active use of magic, which is a different practice.  It is certainly possible to be a Wiccan and not a witch.  

And of course, the term you never, ever, under any circumstances use for a fellow covener is "warlock."

Although 'witch' is a term I seldom use generally to describe myself personally, and when I do it's strictly in its modern sense, all Wiccans are Witches because by tradition it's specifically the title 'Witch' that we receive upon initiation.

BrighidsAura

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #42 on: July 20, 2014, 05:03:15 pm »
Quote from: missgraceless;153335
*someone please correct me if Buddhism/Hinduism/other Eastern religions don't fall under "pagan." I'm under the assumption that they do because they aren't Abrahamic.

I apologize if someone else has already answered this. Yes, Buddhism and Hinduism are considered pagan. However, THEY don't usually consider themselves as pagans. Pagan is a term that, if I understand correctly, is more of a western word that only westerners really use. If you called a Hindu a pagan, they would probably just be like "umm no, I'm a Hindu." But yes, as an umbrella term, it does encompass anything that isn't Jewish, Christian, or Muslim.  

I totally understand what you went through with your mom and grandma. I think most of us have had that happen to us at some point or another. It's almost as though the majority of "muggles" (bahaha. I don't care if that's annoying. I think it's funny!) don't really even think of witches, pagans, etc. as even legitimate walks of life. I am actually ashamed of myself because I did my own part in perpetuating that mindset because, when I was hired for my current job, my HR lady saw my very old ID which has me wearing a hijab in it. I had given Islam a try and went back to paganism 5 years later. She asked what my religion was and I said "well, I WAS a Muslim when that picture was taken but I'm back to being a witch" and she kind of stared at me and I laughed and said "and my mommy is a vampire and my daddy is a ghost. No, I'm joking about that. But yes, I do follow a pagan-based faith now." I just felt this instant responsibility to almost discount my OWN religious views so that I wouldn't feel stupid on my first day of work. Now I just feel stupid for doing that to myself.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2014, 05:04:32 pm by BrighidsAura »

BrighidsAura

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #43 on: July 20, 2014, 05:06:03 pm »
Quote from: Micheál;153431
Although 'witch' is a term I seldom use generally to describe myself personally, and when I do it's strictly in its modern sense, all Wiccans are Witches because by tradition it's specifically the title 'Witch' that we receive upon initiation.


Right. And Wicca is a Witchcraft-based religion. It's more uncommon (though I doubt impossible) to find a Wiccan who is NOT a witch. I certainly have never met one.

Though I did meet someone who considers themselves a Sith-Lord so I suppose anything is possible :)

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Re: I have a problem with the word "witch" (and I would like your help!)
« Reply #44 on: July 20, 2014, 05:35:34 pm »
Quote from: missgraceless;153428
Bahahahahaah. Is this now A Thing? To be Kinetic or Potential?

And I'm unfortunately a Potential Pagan as well.
If we're defining a Kinetic Pagan as someone who goes and does magic, makes things, etc and Potential Pagan as someone who's still in the "research phase" I would say I relatively recently made the switch to Kinetic Pagan. XD
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