Tag Archives: Wicca

Oaths and Secrets in Wicca

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Gerald Gardner liked drama and prestige[1]. When he first started promoting the religion of Wicca he included oaths of secrecy as part of the first degree initiation rite. This served to impress on initiates that Wicca was a serious secret society. It also acted to preserve Wiccan teachings as exclusive to those who had been formally admitted to the group…. Read more »

Wiccan, Witch, Pagan – What’s the Difference?

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  (This article is an excerpt from “The Wiccan Mystic.”) What Is Wicca? Current historical research suggests that Wicca is a modern Pagan religion first promoted by Gerald Gardner around the 1950s. Wiccan beliefs are structured on the practices of witchcraft as outlined by Gardner. Modern scholars such as Ronald Hutton, in his detailed and highly influential book “The Triumph of… Read more »

Pagan Bookshelf: Communing with Nature

Late afternoon sunlight

One of the reasons many people turn to modern Pagan religions is to seek a way to incorporate respect for Nature into their spirituality.  Some religions, such as Wicca, have a decidedly Earth-revering emphasis.  How can we enhance our understanding of Nature and build a deep connection with the flora, fauna, and mineral realms?  There are quite a few books… Read more »

Pagan Bookshelf: Magick


Many books that are available on the topic of magick present it from within a specific religious framework.  Many of these sorts of books end up being mostly about religion and have only a small bit that is about magick.  What’s a person to do if they want to learn about magick but are not as interested in the religious… Read more »

The Inner Mysteries: Progressive Witchcraft and Connection with the Divine by Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone

The Inner Mysteries by Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone

Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone have updated their 2004 classic, “Progressive Witchcraft” and given the new second edition a fresh title: “The Inner Mysteries: Progressive Witchcraft and Connection With the Divine.” This is an important book for Wiccans and is a must read for a number of reasons.

The Heart of Wicca by Ellen Cannon Reed

The Heart of Wicca

This slim volume (running one hundred and thirty four pages, including the index and extra materials) is a challenging read and not one I would recommend to beginners.  The subtitle “Wise Words from a Crone on the Path,” implies it is an exploration of the deeper meaning of Wiccan practice and philosophy from one who is an Elder of the… Read more »

The Witches’ Sabbats by Mike Nichols


Back in the pre-internet days computer geek Pagans like me would use our dial-up modems to connect with bulletin board systems where we could download text files, send and receive email, and participate in online discussion on a wide variety of topics.  There were dozens of different networks that individual BBSs would hook into covering all sorts of interests –… Read more »

Wiccan Fundamentalism


Religious fundamentalism is characterized by literal belief in specific spiritual claims, often about a particular religion’s history, regardless of any available evidence. A particular dogma is promoted as the One True and Only Way and anything that deviates is considered heretical. The Roman Catholic Church has an office within its organization called the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the… Read more »

Defending Eclectic Neopaganism


There is a trend among some Reconstructionist Neopagans to dismiss Neopagans who are admitted Eclectics in their religious practice and philosophy. Recently, Sannion wrote an editorial titled “Defending Reconstructionism” to address the conflict and to present some of the arguments from a Reconstructionist’s viewpoint. Sannion’s editorial can be found on the web in the September 2002 issue (#27) of the… Read more »

Thoughts on Bashing Fluffy Bunnies


One unfortunate trend which has become prominent within the online Pagan community is known as “bashing fluffy bunnies.” No, it doesn’t involve harming animals — but it does involve verbally attacking those who are perceived to have less scholarly opinions on modern Paganism than the attacker. Personally I think this trend is shameful and disrespectful, unworthy of anyone who claims… Read more »