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Old 08-25-2012, 06:51 PM
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Default Wiccans?

So I just found out a good friend of mine is a budding Wiccan. I have been asking her questions about it because different faiths fascinate me but she is still learning about much of it herself. She has some books she would lend me but I'm not sure my husband would be very comfortable with them in the house due to the subject matter (he's a pretty laid back guy in general so I will respect his wishes in this).

I know there are a few wiccans/pagans on here so I thought I'd shoot you guys a few questions. Are there different sects or types of wiccans? Do you have to be part of a group (coven?) or can you do it on your own? Is there some kind of conversion process you go through? What exactly are the deities involved?
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Old 08-25-2012, 07:03 PM
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Well I am at a big outdooor festival now but will try to give an answer tomorrow morning if someone else hasnt by then. I am actually not Wiccan technically but I sometimes use that label for simplicity and I did start out my pagan journey studying it. I usually jet use the term witch for myself, or green witch to be a bit more specific.

Dietiets are both general and specific, a pick your own of sorts. Everyone believes something a bit different but a common belief is that gods and goddesses are just manifestation of an all or facets of life's energy.

Practice is solitary or communal like in a coven.

Usually there is a dedication ritual that one does either alone or in a group. It too is open and many make their own up or pick and choose from others.

There are MANY sects of paganism and Wicca is just one (which has many variations and sects within it).
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:03 PM
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Paganism is virtually anything that isn't Christianity, technically speaking. Most believe in the Mother, if not all. But there is also many other deities, elements, and such. Our "witchcraft" is really just very elaborate prayers. It is VERY much a pick and choose type of thing, which is why so many people seem to flock to it. There are few "rules", you choose the best path for your lifestyle and beliefs, and your intent guides everything when it comes to prayers, rituals, etc. You can practice alone or in a group, just like other religions. Some people prefer to practice on their own, since you tend to draw less attention that way and of course, each Coven have their own rituals, prayers, and rules that they follow. Since it is just a widespread religious group, not everyone enjoys joining a coven, where things may be more strict and bottlenecked.

That aside, Wicca is just one, more modern, sect of Paganism that really seems to stress the "witch" part of it, IME. I've met many 'Wiccans' who were really just another general form of Paganism, and then you also have the children who screw it all up and mix it with Satanism. Every religious group has their own weirdos, I've found.

But it is a very live and let live type of lifestyle, IME. Our "Book of Shadows" is either a general or very, very personal book not unlike the Bible. It outlines prayers, rituals, spiritual information, etc. Not every person has one, though.
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:08 PM
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What makes a Wiccan a Wiccan as opposed to other forms of paganism?
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~Christina--Mom to:
Sally--8 yr old pit bull mix
Jack--6 yr old Labrador
Sadie & Runt--12 yr old calico DSHs
Pickles & Kiwi--3 yr old white winged parakeets
Yoda--1 yr old Quaker parrot
Solo--12 yr old Senegal parrot
Sheena--Quarter Horse--3/24/86-6/23/11--Rest Easy Sweet Girl~




Labs do it in the lake.


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Old 08-25-2012, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sillysally View Post
What makes a Wiccan a Wiccan as opposed to other forms of paganism?
Depends on the person. Some people think they are the same, others have their own definitions.

Technically speaking, Wicca was "developed" during the first half of the 20th century, and then later popularized by Gerald Gardener. It's structure, or it's basis of belief, is actually founded on several different ancient sects of paganism. It's a very modern modge podge take on older traditions and beliefs. Some of it dips into Satanism, such as the 'Horned God', but some of it doesn't.

The major difference is the different take on "magic/k", "witchcraft", etc. General Pagans seem to take it more as what I said, just very elaborate prayers. Wicca tends to lean on the belief that you CAN manipulate the world, people, transform objects and intents. It also seems to lean heavily on good intent AND bad intent, while Paganism in general is all about honoring your fellow human.

It really depends how you look at it, because even Wiccans have their own sects and groups that stand apart from each other.
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lyzelle View Post
Paganism is virtually anything that isn't Christianity, technically speaking.
That’s not how I understand it?
Pagans are polytheistic are they not?
Monotheists would be muslims, jews, christians... who am I forgetting??

IME pagans tend to be more open minded what with not having the constraints of “you will have no other god before me” stuff. But more and more I throw my hands up at all religions.
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:30 PM
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It's really just one of those things where everyone has an opinion, no one is wrong, and sometimes beliefs/opinions overlap. There's no clear cut answer on anything except history.
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danefied View Post
That’s not how I understand it?
Pagans are polytheistic are they not?
Monotheists would be muslims, jews, christians... who am I forgetting??

IME pagans tend to be more open minded what with not having the constraints of “you will have no other god before me” stuff. But more and more I throw my hands up at all religions.
Pagan comes from the Latin, 'paganus', which means country dweller. In the time period, it was meant to describe those who were...welll....lived in the country, were one with the earth, etc., and did not practice Christianity.

So I guess I should have said "historically speaking" not technically speaking. Lol. Sorry.

But yet, Paganism DOES cover ALL polytheistic religions, so in a way it fits.

ETA: Also, Muslim, Jew, Baptist, and even Catholicism is all considered different forms of Christianity. The differences are views on Mary, Jesus, Angels, etc. from what I've learned. So I guess it's sort of one in the same, with a few exceptions.
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danefied View Post
That’s not how I understand it?
Pagans are polytheistic are they not?
Monotheists would be muslims, jews, christians... who am I forgetting??

IME pagans tend to be more open minded what with not having the constraints of “you will have no other god before me” stuff. But more and more I throw my hands up at all religions.
That was my understanding too. I think Sikhs are as well.
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~Christina--Mom to:
Sally--8 yr old pit bull mix
Jack--6 yr old Labrador
Sadie & Runt--12 yr old calico DSHs
Pickles & Kiwi--3 yr old white winged parakeets
Yoda--1 yr old Quaker parrot
Solo--12 yr old Senegal parrot
Sheena--Quarter Horse--3/24/86-6/23/11--Rest Easy Sweet Girl~




Labs do it in the lake.


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Old 08-25-2012, 08:33 PM
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Capital p Pagan refers to an earth centered religion in which there are many sects and variations on. Little p pagan can mean anyone of the non abrahamic religions (Christian, Jewish, Muslim)
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