When I was sick last fall, I spent most of my time in bed, or on the sofa, reading, reading, reading. It was supposed to be my vacation, a time to relax and recharge my batteries. Instead, I spent my time miserably sniffing, with a horrible sore throat and fever.
Through some weird twist of events that I don’t remember now, I picked up a book that I bought a year ago about Wicca. Wicca is a nature-based religion that believes in a female and male duality in deity, a Goddess and a God. Wicca believes in reverence for nature and all livings beings, and in doing no harm.
Many, many years ago, when I lived in East Tennessee, I knew several Wiccans, all kind and caring people. They often invited me to participate in events with them, which were generally a time of prayer or meditation, followed by a social pot-luck type affair. I enjoyed the events, and even read a little on my own, but never felt a real connection.
Over the next few years, I continued to search for a home for my faith, something that really resonated with me. I tried Catholicism, Quakerism, and Buddhism, and while I enjoyed aspects of each, I didn’t feel like I belonged in any of them. I loved the tradition and ceremony of Catholicism, the direct communion and quiet prayer of Quakerism, the meditation and introspection of Buddhism.
When I picked up Lisa Chamberlain’s Wicca For Beginners, I was just looking for something interesting to read. I had know idea that the concepts of this nature-based religion would change me so thoroughly. I have always been a nature-lover; I even have a degree in Ecology. And I have always been uncomfortable with the image of God as an old, stern man, judging us for all our thoughts and mistakes. But a Goddess and a God, who love us, guide us, and exist all around us in every aspect of our world, somehow that felt like home.
Since that time, I have done a lot of reading, studying, and meditating. At first, I felt that if I walked the Wiccan path, I would be abandoning God. Then, I read the most wonderful passage, which said that Deity is like a diamond; there are many facets of Deity, each beautiful and unique, and there are many paths to reach Deity. What the passage was basically saying is that whether you know the Creator as God, or Jehovah, or as the Goddess and the God, there is no wrong path to take if your intention is to commune with the Creator.
I hesitated to write about my experience, even though it has been life-changing for me. Many people don’t understand Wicca, and there is a lot of misinformation out there. Also, many of those who profess to be Wiccan do so mainly so that they can dress up in floaty, medieval clothes and burn candles and chant.
And yes, Wiccan community groups are called “covens” and Wiccans are known as “witches”. Many people are drawn to Wicca for this reason, so that they can cast spells to make themselves rich, or find love. Or to rebel against their parents, or teachers, or society. That is not what Wicca is about though. It is a real religion, even recognized as such by the US government!
This spiritual journey has been consuming a lot of my time lately. I have been reading and studying everything that I can get my hands on, meditating, and soul-searching. My family have been incredibly supportive, and my friends and co-workers have noticed that I am more patient and relaxed. I thought the time had finally come to share this with you, if for no other reason than I figured people thought I had fallen off the edge of the earth. I don’t intend to turn this into a witchcraft blog, so don’t worry. I hope that you will be happy for me, as I feel that finally my heart is at peace.