In the easiest terms, Wicca is a nature-based religion that focuses on appreciating and working with nature’s elements and the Old Gods and Goddesses. Many followers of this religion follow the rule of three, or the Wiccan Rede, which states “An’ it harm none, do what ye will.” What does all of this mean? It means that Wicca is a form of Witchcraft and Paganism that believes in peace.
Additionally, Wicca is a modern interpretation of ancient Pagan practices.
With this article, we hope to answer any questions you have about the Wiccan Religion. This will become part of our future Wicca for Beginners course.
What do Wiccans do?
This is our favorite question because the beauty of Wicca is that there are many different spiritual paths to fit your individual interests! Because practitioners of this Pagan religion choose to heal instead of harm, Wiccans typically:
- Celebrate the changing of the seasons with holidays like the Summer Solstice
- Appreciate the symbolistic power of growth by celebrating the Full Moon
- Walk in nature to understand our place and energy in our world
- Use plants, herbs, teas, crystals, food, and other earth-based items to heal
- Meditate to connect with the inner and higher self for insight and growth
- Take measures to ensure the well-being of Earth
- Work with energy and auras to promote happiness and healing
- Understand the elements of being and work to create a balance between them
- Spread the true meaning of Universal Love and Light
- Celebrate and commune with ancient deities, such as the triple goddess and the horned god
- Some Wiccans practice rituals and spells for or with each of the above-listed activities
As you can see, the Wiccan religion is very peaceful; its practitioners do not engage in malicious or evil work. Their main goal is peace and coexistence.
Are Wicca and Witchcraft the same thing?
You may have noticed above that we said “some Witches practice rituals and spells.” This is because not all Wiccans choose to cast spells; aside from the Wiccan Rede, spellcasting is one of the major differences between Wiccans and Witchcraft.
Some Wiccans practice Witchcraft. Not all Witches are Wiccan.
Witchcraft means “the practice of magic,” or the casting of spells; to be a Witch means to be a spell caster. As the popular phrase goes, “Magic is neither black nor white;” this means that spells can be cast for good or bad reasons. It is up to the individual Witch to determine if they will cast good or bad spells; there are no rules for general Witchcraft.
Wiccans, on the other hand, must follow their rule of harming none. Additionally, not all Wiccans choose to cast spells; some Wiccans simply like to enjoy nature on a spiritual level.
Here’s a quick list of how to tell if a Witch is a Wiccan or a Wiccan is a Witch.
- Witches who follow the Wiccan Rede = Wiccan.
- Wiccans who cast spells = Wiccan Witches
- Wiccans who do not cast spells = Not Witches.
- Witches who do not follow the Wiccan Rede = Not Wiccan.
Are Wicca and Paganism the same thing?
Similar to the above question, all Wiccans are Pagan, but not all Pagans are Wiccans.
Think of Paganism as a big umbrella; under this umbrella are hundreds of different ways to practice a pre-Christian spirituality. Wicca is one belief system that exists under this umbrella.
Here’s a quick way to remember this.
- All Wiccans are Pagan.
- Only some Pagans are Wiccan.
Where did Wicca come from?
You may have noticed above that Wicca is a modern interpretation of ancient Pagan practices. Despite what you may have heard, Wicca is not an ancient religion. In fact, it’s part of the Pagan renaissance, the revival of Paganism.
After the terrible and historical Witch Trials of Europe and the United States, many covens had to hide their practices. Books of Shadows and Grimoires became word-of-mouth information, and open circles became underground practices. This meant that natural healing techniques, seasonal rites, and traditional practices became hard to come by, and in some cases extinct.
Today, we have Gerald Gardner to thank for the revival of neo-Paganism and contemporary Paganism. Through his travels, he collected information on all of these hidden practices and turned them into the Wiccan religion. With the help of other famous practitioners, such as Doreen Valiente and the infamous occultist Aleister Crowley, Wicca was born and Paganism came back to life!
How do I become a Wiccan?
This answer varies, depending on who you are learning from.
Wicca is split into many different spiritual paths.
If you are excited to become a Traditional Wiccan, you will need to be initiated into Gardnerian Wicca, Alexandrian Wicca, or Dianic Wicca by working with a coven and a high priestess or priest.
If you want to simply practice and work with nature in your own way, you can self-initiate yourself when you feel that you have learned enough!
We hope this quick dive into Wicca has helped you see where this nature-based religion fits within the World religions. If you have any questions, please comment below!
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