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Author Topic: Are my beliefs specifically "Wiccan"?  (Read 785 times)

EclecticWillow

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Are my beliefs specifically "Wiccan"?
« on: December 09, 2012, 08:45:56 am »
Merry day to all!

I have beliefs that seem to align with Wicca (although I know there really isn't a dogma) but I am uncertain. I don't want to offend someone if I call myself a Wiccan but my beliefs state otherwise.

I believe in one supreme Being/Energy that manifests through Nature and is Nature. This Being/Energy is equally masculine and feminine energy. 'Masculine' and 'feminine' are human-made characterizations and can be applied to the Being/Energy so we can understand it more, as it is ultimately unknowable. So I think of it as being two halves of one whole, which is Being/Energy.

Throughout the centuries, again, to better understand the Supreme, people have created characterizations of it. The Greeks and Romans created pantheons as well as the Celts, Norses, and of course the Egyptians. Each God and Goddess is a personality and trait of the supreme Being/Energy and focusing on one God or Goddess allows for natural magick to occur based on the chosen God/Goddess.

I also believe in reincarnation and have started to explore the idea of being One with Being/Energy once full Enlightenment has been reached.

Is this Wicca, or another Pagan belief? Again, I do not want to offend anyone by calling myself something that I'm not. I'm just trying to educate myself further.

*Note, I call the supreme Being/Energy because it could very well be a more personable deity that takes some type of human form (what many Christians believe of God) or it could be a large pool of energy that flows through nature.

Thank you very much in advance if I do not reply immediately!
Love & Light & Peace,
EclecticWillow
"If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading."
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Gilbride

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Re: Are my beliefs specifically "Wiccan"?
« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2012, 09:09:53 am »
Quote from: EclecticWillow;83980
I believe in one supreme Being/Energy that manifests through Nature and is Nature. This Being/Energy is equally masculine and feminine energy. 'Masculine' and 'feminine' are human-made characterizations and can be applied to the Being/Energy so we can understand it more, as it is ultimately unknowable. So I think of it as being two halves of one whole, which is Being/Energy.


I'd say that's compatible with Wicca. Some would agree with it, some wouldn't. Traditional Wiccans sometimes put a lot of emphasis on the need for goddess-god pairs, which is a bit different from just saying that there are lots of gods and goddesses.

Jenett

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Re: Are my beliefs specifically "Wiccan"?
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2012, 06:42:46 pm »
Quote from: EclecticWillow;83980
Merry day to all!

I have beliefs that seem to align with Wicca (although I know there really isn't a dogma) but I am uncertain. I don't want to offend someone if I call myself a Wiccan but my beliefs state otherwise.


Here's the thing: many Pagan religions are joined by shared practice, no shared belief. (Wicca is a bit more complicated than that.) So a place to start is probably better "What am I doing about it?" than "What do I believe?"

Obviously, the two are connected in a variety of ways, but if you believe stuff that's similar to Wicca, or to Druidry, or to Reconstructionism, but what you're *doing* is different, those labels are still not going to be a good fit. (And because it's quite possible for people in a religious witchcraft circle to have vastly different ideas about the nature of deity, it also isn't necessarily actually helpful.)

I have a couple of essays on my website that might help you a bit with this, and with whether "Wicca" is the term you want to be using in the first place. You can find them over here: http://gleewood.org/seeking/basics/ - I'm specifically thinking the second section, the "What is Wicca" links may be of particular interest.

I will note that traditional initiatory Wicca works with and honours and serves two very specific and identified deities whose names are private within initiatory circles. My understanding from the trad Wiccans I know is that they are very much not "divine feminine" and "divine masculine" or human made shapes, but very much consistent, persistent, and very much specific personalities.

(That certainly fits in with my own experiences with other deities, so I have no problems with that myself, but people's experiences with deity vary a lot.)

The divine feminine/masculine, or the idea that the Gods are an essentially human creation are common in some strands of religious witchcraft (including some that use the term Wicca to describe themselves), but they're probably *more* common in more eclectic practices drawing from a bunch of different sources, and you may find a better fit in some of those sources.

(And to go back to the practices bit, if you're honoring a male deity and a female deity, but you're not doing it in a cast circle, or with respect to specific points of yearly cycles, or a bunch of other things, Wicca is probably not the useful term. And of course, if you're using a tighter definition of the term Wicca -as per those links above - then there are even more specific practices to consider.)
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Lynx

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Re: Are my beliefs specifically "Wiccan"?
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2012, 12:18:57 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;84020
Here's the thing: many Pagan religions are joined by shared practice, no shared belief. (Wicca is a bit more complicated than that.) So a place to start is probably better "What am I doing about it?" than "What do I believe?"

Obviously, the two are connected in a variety of ways, but if you believe stuff that's similar to Wicca, or to Druidry, or to Reconstructionism, but what you're *doing* is different, those labels are still not going to be a good fit. (And because it's quite possible for people in a religious witchcraft circle to have vastly different ideas about the nature of deity, it also isn't necessarily actually helpful.)

I have a couple of essays on my website that might help you a bit with this, and with whether "Wicca" is the term you want to be using in the first place. You can find them over here: http://gleewood.org/seeking/basics/ - I'm specifically thinking the second section, the "What is Wicca" links may be of particular interest.

I will note that traditional initiatory Wicca works with and honours and serves two very specific and identified deities whose names are private within initiatory circles. My understanding from the trad Wiccans I know is that they are very much not "divine feminine" and "divine masculine" or human made shapes, but very much consistent, persistent, and very much specific personalities.

(That certainly fits in with my own experiences with other deities, so I have no problems with that myself, but people's experiences with deity vary a lot.)

The divine feminine/masculine, or the idea that the Gods are an essentially human creation are common in some strands of religious witchcraft (including some that use the term Wicca to describe themselves), but they're probably *more* common in more eclectic practices drawing from a bunch of different sources, and you may find a better fit in some of those sources.

(And to go back to the practices bit, if you're honoring a male deity and a female deity, but you're not doing it in a cast circle, or with respect to specific points of yearly cycles, or a bunch of other things, Wicca is probably not the useful term. And of course, if you're using a tighter definition of the term Wicca -as per those links above - then there are even more specific practices to consider.)

 
You know, I have been calling myself "Wiccan" for the better part of the past 12 years because I never really understood there was a difference between initiation by other Wiccans and self-initiation (thank you, book store "New Age" section -__-).

I visited this thread http://www.wiccantogether.com/forum/topics/discussing-wicca-intelligently which was linked to on another thread here and started reading through it...

It struck my attention that Wicca seems to be very specific and, though I practice witchcraft, I don't know if I'm necessarily Wiccan. That's QUITE the revelation.

I do agree with the poster here that research is required, and I thank those here who have been pointing it out. In a way, it resonated with me like this example:

I am vegan. I don't care if you eat meat or whatnot, but what bothers me is when people call themselves vegan when they just eat a plant-based diet ("vegan" is a term for a lifestyle adaptation, like you don't even USE any animal products, like leather, etc). So it bugs me when I hear people claiming to be vegan but still eat eggs sometimes or still wear leather or don't give up their UGG boots.  A lot of people take offense to vegans calling out non-vegans-who-call-themselves-vegan like we're saying they don't do "enough" for animal rights, but it's not what we're saying at all. We just object to the misuse of the term because of how it misrepresents what we believe. I think some Wiccans would object to the term because it misrepresents Wicca as something that is closer to ecclectic paganism or religions witchcraft, if I am making any sense?

I guess what I am saying is that yes, some might take offense to the term Wiccan because of the lack of certain specifics, even if you do take mostly from Wiccan traditions (e.g. I still celebrate the sabbats, practice magick, cast circles, etc).

So, thanks to everyone here for making me aware of this! Now I need to find a term better suited for what I do! :)
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