I missed out on celebrating my second favorite holiday – Beltane. I had the night all planned for the celebration. I knew exactly what ritual I was going to perform. How I was going to perform it. What I was going to wear. I had everything planned! Then the unexpected happened! I completely forgot!!!!!
I know, I know, call me a bad Witch. How could I forget one of the best Sabbats?? I mean really, for a practicing Witch to forget…. she can’t really be a “practicing” Witch now can she?
And there in lies today’s debate.
I’m often frustrated with “Witches.” Yes, being one myself makes that almost hypocritical doesn’t it? I have a valid reason for my frustration. You have Practicing Witches, Book Bound Witches, and Clueless Witches. Practicing Witches do the spells, collect the herbs, follow the Rede, etc. Book Bound Witches never get out of the book. They’ve never performed a ritual, written a spell, or mixed a potion. The Clueless Witches….well, they’re clueless. They’re caught in the movies, and the darkness of the stereotype. Lost in an illusion.
Now, I will be the first to admit I use to be on of the Clueless Witches and, one of the Book Bound Witches. My story goes……
In High School I was a Clueless Witch. A Witch only in my dreams I guess you could say. I hadn’t read the books. Probably because I didn’t have a clue where to find them back then. Not to mention living in the “Bible Belt.” You don’t exactly see Occult Bookstores on every street corner. Nope, I was a Witch only in my mind. Looking back now, yes, part of it was for shock value.
In a bible-thumping community, being a teenager, and having a slight rebellious streak… telling someone you were a Witch was an evil thing to do. I loved it! Unfortunately, there was not as much shock and awe in the responses as I was expecting. So, I started researching.
All the scary, horror movies about Witches and evil and demon’s and Witchcraft absolutely fascinated me! Deep in my deepest core I KNEW there was such a thing as magick. How could there not be? The movies just proved it. I mean seriously, the special effects of some of them? Only magick could explain how they did it!
If you think about it, we all know magick exists. We know each spring the grass will turn green, birds will chirp, and the wonders of nature will spring up all about us. It is a magickal time of year. What makes it all happen though? God? Nature? Fairies? A combination of all three? Whatever anyone may believe, no one can deny there is magick afoot.
We all believe in Miracles, in some form. Miracles such as making it to the gas station when the gas gauge says “E”! The miracle of life, of finding the dream job, of friends and love. The miracle of belief and hope. It is one of those human qualities we all share. I like to think Miracles and Magick are one and the same. I could be wrong but it is a pleasing, wonderful thought.
What started out as a teenagers attempt at freaking out the elders, turned into a search for self. The more I read and learned about Witchcraft and Paganism the more I was convinced I was on the right path. Now let me admit right here that at one point…. I leaned toward the dark side. It fascinated me, curiousity won the coin toss, and off I went. Let me add however, that while I investigated and read and studied the darker side I never slipped beyond the curiousity and knowledge seeking. (Ironically, while writing this paragraph my word count indicator froze at 666!)
I have a theory that I am far to soft hearted to be evil. I take in stray’s – cats, dogs, ferrets, ghosts…. They either find good homes or move on. I could never curse anyoneeither, because curses are final, life long. Why would I invest time and energy to curse someone anyway? Their negativity doesn’t belong in my life for the time it would take. Not to mention the whole harm none, and three fold law.
Anyway…. I’m rambling, I know. You see, I tried the whole Christian thing. I went to church every Sunday, Wednesday, and Sunday night. I even went to church camp which was a blast! I just didn’t “feel” it to my core. There was just something wrong with the whole concept of a god who loved you unconditionaly ONLY if you followed his ten commandments. Maybe I have a whole different concept on what unconditional means. I always thought it meant “without conditions.” I could be wrong though…
I just couldn’t buy what religion was selling. So, I continued on my journey for my own spiritual path. That is when I discovered a most wonderful place! Isis was my dream store! If you ever get a chance to make it to Denver Colorado I highly recommend a visit! If you can’t make it there, at least check out their website: http://www.isisbooks.com/
So, thanks to Isis I bought books and Tarot cards and herbs and candles and athame’s and altar necessities and…. I was a buying fiend who quickly went broke. I couldn’t help it though. I had been denied all these wonderful things, and fantastic knowledge. It was overwhelming, and fascinating, and exactly what my soul needed. But, with every good their comes a little bad.
It was around this time I discovered two very important things. One, I was scared to death to do my first spell! And two, there were a lot of Witches out there who were clueless as to what being a Witch really meant. They were me in my High School days!! I met Witches in their 40’s who were more likely to curse someone then to bless them. Some of the ones I ran into couldn’t tell you about the Three Fold Law!
There are basics every Witch knows. Ones you learn out of the starting gate. Ones you never forget because they are your first thought before you do a spell. There is a humanity to Witchcraft. And there in lies my frustration….
If you are going to call yourself a Witch – know what it is you are calling yourself! The Witch in the horror movies is a stereotype, and not a real Witch! If you are going to claim the name of Witch – be a practicing Witch! I’m not talking about doing spells every night or remembering the Sabbats. I’m talking about putting humanity first. Doing whatever you can to help your fellow man. Whether that help is via a spell, or listening, or lending a hand, or mixing a potion, or doing a blessing, or performing a handfasting, or doing a Wiccaning, or…. life is sacred, never forget!
I’ve played the part of all three Witch types – Clueless, Book Bound, and Practicing. I like Practicing the best. I don’t remember to celebrate every Holiday. Mainly because life and work get in the way. I do remember to give thanks each night and to help everyone I can. I always remember though that being a Witch is a lifestyle choice because it changes your whole world! And, if I get a little frustrated with those who are Clueless and Book Bound….I apologize. Those of us who are Practicing Witches fight constantly to overcome a stereotype perpetuated by people who don’t look beyond movie magick. Please don’t be one of the Witches who makes it harder to do!
And on that note…. I think I’ll celebrate Beltane a little late.
Blessed Be my friends!