My friendly neighbourhood witches

by Ken Russell

I was privileged to drag my Hammer-Horror fantasies into the lair of a real witch and warlock for correctional instruction Ken Russell In a heavily wooded hollow in the heart of the New Forest lies the village ...

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Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#431 Apr 24, 2011
Callisto_ wrote:
<quoted text>
This is something I've wondered about. There seems to be an established group here yet most of the topics are inactive.
Kathwynn is quite right in that Topix attracts trolls no end. Though he's lucky to have missed some of the worst who really misrepresented themselves and did so maliciously. Since then people have been shy to post. I've personally left and returned a few times, mostly since Topix related dramas were starting to get in the way of my life basically.

As for your prior comment, I re-read the original article and the thread was started by a poster taking umbrage with the use of the term warlock to describe Vandervalk. What I understood from William-'s posts where why should witches take 'witch' to be more respectable than 'warlock'? Both have held negative connotations throughout recorded history and alas Kathwynn will be disappointed but most of the pagan-lore we have was recorded by Christian historians.

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#432 Apr 24, 2011
kathwynn wrote:
I did let me refresh your memory a bit.. Context.. And the word you were looking for was Lamia.. Which mean both vampire and witch...Also Strega Italian for Witch.. not bad but compassionate...We also covered the fact that others like satanist also would like to claim the title witch.. When in fact they are satanists.
Do you know Stregheria practitioners or better yet people who live by some and can relate more unbiasedly as to the relationship of Stregheria to the local people and the local people to those who practice it? Given that only recently with the erroneous group: "del Bosco Family" and then there are Raven Gramassi related websites but nothing actually verifiable therein.
kathwynn wrote:
Oh and I thought you wanted to let this go.. I was willing to, but much like the last time when you were crying about stopping this.. before the day was out. you were right back at it... Why do you want the christian prpaganda to be the only valid one?...It makes no sense. Unless you are a christian. Or want to be christian. It is the only plausible answers I can come to here.
Certainly seems like you're the sore looser. William- has only re-asserted his views. One might say just like you but thats not true you have resorted to bullying tactics repeatedly by now. The fact that you don't know why other witches and pagans might use Christian sources speaks more of your ignorance than it does anyone else's. I'm bored with you now.

“NM Desert Rat”

Since: Mar 08

Elephant Butte, N.M.

#433 Apr 24, 2011
Abhainn wrote:
<quoted text>
Kathwynn is quite right in that Topix attracts trolls no end. Though he's lucky to have missed some of the worst who really misrepresented themselves and did so maliciously. Since then people have been shy to post. I've personally left and returned a few times, mostly since Topix related dramas were starting to get in the way of my life basically.
As for your prior comment, I re-read the original article and the thread was started by a poster taking umbrage with the use of the term warlock to describe Vandervalk. What I understood from William-'s posts where why should witches take 'witch' to be more respectable than 'warlock'? Both have held negative connotations throughout recorded history and alas Kathwynn will be disappointed but most of the pagan-lore we have was recorded by Christian historians.
Like you, I have left several times and keep coming back. Sometimes I wish I knew the answer to that. I have also met some very interesting people here. This forum presents a good potential to share information and ideas. Each of us has a unique path whether it be traditional or solitare. Trolls will always be a problem but if you don't feed them they eventually go away. Personally I really could care less about definitions or what is the correct way to define something. If it feels right to you then it is right. On a last note the interaction has been interesting and at times entertaining.

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#434 Apr 25, 2011
NM Desert Rat wrote:
Like you, I have left several times and keep coming back. Sometimes I wish I knew the answer to that. I have also met some very interesting people here. This forum presents a good potential to share information and ideas. Each of us has a unique path whether it be traditional or solitaire.
Well I'm hopeful that this will remain a more fixed username this time even if I do need to go away and come back later. ;)

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#435 Apr 25, 2011
Abhainn wrote:
<quoted text>
Do you know Stregheria practitioners or better yet people who live by some and can relate more unbiasedly as to the relationship of Stregheria to the local people and the local people to those who practice it? Given that only recently with the erroneous group: "del Bosco Family" and then there are Raven Gramassi related websites but nothing actually verifiable therein.
Speaking of, where have the chips landed with that?
Abhainn wrote:
Certainly seems like you're the sore looser. William- has only re-asserted his views. One might say just like you but thats not true you have resorted to bullying tactics repeatedly by now. The fact that you don't know why other witches and pagans might use Christian sources speaks more of your ignorance than it does anyone else's. I'm bored with you now.
Not to mention that not all historical record is via Christian interpretation, a lot of research and corrected information has come to light within the fields of history, archaeology, sociology and anthropology in studying ancient pagan artifacts and writings without religious filtering.

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#436 Apr 25, 2011
Abhainn wrote:
Kathwynn is quite right in that Topix attracts trolls no end. Though he's lucky to have missed some of the worst who really misrepresented themselves and did so maliciously. Since then people have been shy to post. I've personally left and returned a few times, mostly since Topix related dramas were starting to get in the way of my life basically.
That seems to be the case with most forums, unless they are well moderated. Since these boards are not, it's not surprising trolls over populate, there's no remedy in place to thin the herd.

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#437 Apr 25, 2011
NM Desert Rat wrote:
Personally I really could care less about definitions or what is the correct way to define something. If it feels right to you then it is right. On a last note the interaction has been interesting and at times entertaining.
I guess I'm on the other side of that. I feel definitions are essential, it's why we can all string together words and convey our thoughts because there is a shared understanding of what words mean. A lot of confusion, misinformation and warring that goes on in the pagan community stems from people wanting to personally interpret what a word means, but then balking when someone believes it means something else per *their* personal interpretation - and neither of them employing whatever the original standard definition is. If everyone is "correct" because their personal filter feels right, then words are rendered meaningless because ultimately they can mean anything.

“Dance with Fire- Boycott BS”

Since: Apr 07

Moon

#438 Apr 25, 2011
Callisto_ wrote:
<quoted text>
I guess I'm on the other side of that. I feel definitions are essential, it's why we can all string together words and convey our thoughts because there is a shared understanding of what words mean. A lot of confusion, misinformation and warring that goes on in the pagan community stems from people wanting to personally interpret what a word means, but then balking when someone believes it means something else per *their* personal interpretation - and neither of them employing whatever the original standard definition is. If everyone is "correct" because their personal filter feels right, then words are rendered meaningless because ultimately they can mean anything.
I agree with you there, Callisto, except that I would be one to try and agree on an essential, or very simple meaning.

For instance, a witch would be a user of folk magic in its simplest form. Wicca in its simplest form is an orthopraxy and more defined by what its practioners do.

I wouldn't say that Wiccans are defined by believing in the Rede, but that they are defined by practicing magic with ethics and responsibility combined with reverance for Nature and the Divine Anima and/or Animus. The Mysteries can be accessed via a variety of methods and I have met many mystics outside of BTW that understand them as well as initiates do. That definition encompasses a wide variety of solitaires and traditions out there; but may leave out some people who are less ritually active, or who may celebrate Sabbats/Nature, but not seek to experience the Divine and/or Mysteries.

So be it, Neo-Pagansim is a big world and it doesn't all have to be finagled and accomodated under Wicca itself. If everyone is respectful of individual chosen paths there is no need for BTW Wiccans to feel put upon because they utilize a more organized system or literally believe in the Gods, nor for eclectic Witches or Neo-pagans to be given any grief because they are not initiated nor a member of a specific Pagan religion. Thus, there should be no shame in clearly stating what we are with an understanding of basic delineators indicating different Pagan religions or lack thereof in Neo-Paganism.

Like I heard ealier at a meeting, "keep is simple, stupid".

“WOOH!!”

Since: May 08

Vallejo, CA

#439 Apr 25, 2011
William- wrote:
<quoted text>
No need to type slow, I understood perfectly what you were saying.
More importantly, nothing was presented to prove they weren't... and THAT was the claim that was made.
But no matter... views were presented from both sides and now it is up to each individual to take what they can from the discussion and give it some thought, perhaps do some research, and hopefully learn something from it all.
What is the point of presenting evidence to refute something for which no evidence has been offered??

*checks horse* Yup, still dead. And really starting to smell.

Seeyalaterkthxbuhbye

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#440 Apr 25, 2011
CShine wrote:
<quoted text>
I agree with you there, Callisto, except that I would be one to try and agree on an essential, or very simple meaning.
For instance, a witch would be a user of folk magic in its simplest form. Wicca in its simplest form is an orthopraxy and more defined by what its practioners do.
I wouldn't say that Wiccans are defined by believing in the Rede, but that they are defined by practicing magic with ethics and responsibility combined with reverance for Nature and the Divine Anima and/or Animus. The Mysteries can be accessed via a variety of methods and I have met many mystics outside of BTW that understand them as well as initiates do. That definition encompasses a wide variety of solitaires and traditions out there; but may leave out some people who are less ritually active, or who may celebrate Sabbats/Nature, but not seek to experience the Divine and/or Mysteries.
So be it, Neo-Pagansim is a big world and it doesn't all have to be finagled and accomodated under Wicca itself. If everyone is respectful of individual chosen paths there is no need for BTW Wiccans to feel put upon because they utilize a more organized system or literally believe in the Gods, nor for eclectic Witches or Neo-pagans to be given any grief because they are not initiated nor a member of a specific Pagan religion. Thus, there should be no shame in clearly stating what we are with an understanding of basic delineators indicating different Pagan religions or lack thereof in Neo-Paganism.
Like I heard ealier at a meeting, "keep is simple, stupid".
Largely what I was pointing to regarding dissension is that there are pagans who don't want a basic definition beyond "it's whatever you want it to mean." Which begs the question regarding the term and practice, when does a thing stop being/meaning a specific thing if it's all inclusive of everything? How can it be recognized and defined as a given thing when there is no essential meaning being employed?

"Wicca" is a prime example, with everything from astrology to hoodoo claimed to be a part of it because someone's personal interpretation of "Wicca" includes elements of those other practices.

I don't know about the BTW Mysteries being accessible outside of BTW. I realize BTW does not hold the patent on Mystery traditions, and, obviously, there are many forms of Mysteries exploration. But I can't say whether someone (a non-BTW) knows them. Are you saying it's all the same, regardless and no distinction among the Greek Mysteries of Eleusis or Etruria or Egypt or (pre-Islamic) Persia, Babylonian, Assyrian, etc., or modern day BTW and other Mystery traditions? If you've experienced them one way, you've pretty much experienced them all?

I don't know if a broader definition is possible of Wicca (one that would be _acceptable_ to the various practices using the label). Traditional and Eclectic are two entirely different things, which arose independently of one another. Different enough that they rarely bare anything other than minimal resemblance to one another. With one of the core differences being one is an initiatory priesthood of a Mysteries religion and the other is not. It's those distinctions that made it necessary to add modifiers like "Britsh Traditional" and "Eclectic (Solitary, Neo)" - which IMO aren't used often enough in public forums, thus adding to the confusion for Seekers as to "what Wicca is or is not".

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#441 Apr 25, 2011
[quote]Different enough that they rarely bare anything other than minimal resemblance to one another.[/quote]
Obviously that should be "bear" - though I guess "bare" (skyclad) might be another difference. XD

“Dance with Fire- Boycott BS”

Since: Apr 07

Moon

#442 Apr 25, 2011
Callisto_ wrote:
<quoted text>
"Wicca" is a prime example, with everything from astrology to hoodoo claimed to be a part of it because someone's personal interpretation of "Wicca" includes elements of those other practices.
.
When I am first introducing Wicca, I point to three main practices that define the core spirit and purpose of Wicca, at least from my research both inside, outside, and on the fringes of BTW. As Judy Harrow likes to point out, there are some Wiccans who do what Gardner wrote and some who do what he did. That is not to say all Gardnerians who've strayed have thrown everything out, but they evolve on some point/s that the current 'hard gards' will not relent upon. That point is usually along gender in ritual, and I think they are somewhat becoming more and more alone in that stance. From what I have researched, even Gards in the English Isle don't get what all the fuss is about. Anyway, I then have a much longer list of complementary metaphysical practices and disciplines that are common among Wiccans, but not neccessary if their not your cup of tea.

That being said, it is also my understanding that a well-rounded Wiccan priest/ess would be familiar with several forms of magic from shamanic to folkloric to shamanic and know when and how to best put them to use. For instance, suppose a hillbilly Wiccan priestess may decide to utlize a Hoodoo form of magic in her next working. So she casts a Wiccan circle, evokes the energy/presence of her matron, patron, Great Mother Goddess, Horned God, etc and the Elements. Then procceds to 'pee in a bottle', then charges it using of of the upteenth methods organized into the 8-fold diagram, and then (hopefully with a sacred hand-sanitizing coda) proceeds to Cakes and Ale and otherwise wrapping up the circle, Wicca proscribed style.

Since the use of a 'witches bottle' is a strong commonality in many cultures and their magical practices, if she is using a Wiccan format for the ceremonial circle, taking ethical and magical responsibility for her actions, and undertaking the 'Working' under Divine blessing/presence/energy, does it matter that she is using an Appalachian sourced spell instead of reciting Valiente's chant or one found in a trad BOS to effect the same means within the same commonality?

Since: Apr 11

Location hidden

#443 Apr 25, 2011
From a BTW perspective, what you're describing is simply personal use of outside practices in addition or in tandem with Wicc, but that does not mean those practices then become part of Wicca nor defined as part of Wicca, particularly if the person is of a Tradition.

Yes, BTW priests and priestesses are well rounded and tend to be adept in a multitude of practices. Some even practice more than one form of Craft and/or more than one form of paganism in addition to BTW. However, that's where the person's personal explorations both within and beyond the "confines" of Wicca take them. Covens, for example, are free to choose how steadfastly they adhere to their BoS, with some putting greater emphasis on the whole (e.g., "hard Gards") while others focus particular emphasis on aspects of it. Some (moreso among Alexandrians than Gardnerians), incorporate non-traditional material and liturgy to their coven practices, however it is a standing and universally accepted rule among BTWs that what all a coven or individual do for their personal or coven practices cannot be passed off as being part of the Tradition. I.e., each is free to do as they please but when it comes to initiation lore and BoS, those things need to be communicated separately from them and it made clear those practices are not part of the Tradition. And all Tradition lore and knowledge, regardless of what the given coven uses or does not use, must be transmitted as is, in its entirety without modification, from Initiator to Initiate. This is how the traditions stay intact.

So, assuming by "Wiccan" you mean the hillbilly belongs to a Tradition, it doesn't matter what else she's proficient in and engages in, Hoodoo is not part of Wicca, it is part of what else she has pursued in addition to her (the) tradition. If you mean she's an Eclectic, it doesn't matter because it is not an pre-existing nor defined practice.

“Dance with Fire- Boycott BS”

Since: Apr 07

Moon

#444 Apr 25, 2011
Callisto_ wrote:
From a BTW perspective, what you're describing is simply personal use of outside practices in addition or in tandem with Wicc, but that does not mean those practices then become part of Wicca nor defined as part of Wicca, particularly if the person is of a Tradition.
Yes, BTW priests and priestesses are well rounded and tend to be adept in a multitude of practices. Some even practice more than one form of Craft and/or more than one form of paganism in addition to BTW. However, that's where the person's personal explorations both within and beyond the "confines" of Wicca take them. Covens, for example, are free to choose how steadfastly they adhere to their BoS, with some putting greater emphasis on the whole (e.g., "hard Gards") while others focus particular emphasis on aspects of it. Some (moreso among Alexandrians than Gardnerians), incorporate non-traditional material and liturgy to their coven practices, however it is a standing and universally accepted rule among BTWs that what all a coven or individual do for their personal or coven practices cannot be passed off as being part of the Tradition. I.e., each is free to do as they please but when it comes to initiation lore and BoS, those things need to be communicated separately from them and it made clear those practices are not part of the Tradition. And all Tradition lore and knowledge, regardless of what the given coven uses or does not use, must be transmitted as is, in its entirety without modification, from Initiator to Initiate. This is how the traditions stay intact.
So, assuming by "Wiccan" you mean the hillbilly belongs to a Tradition, it doesn't matter what else she's proficient in and engages in, Hoodoo is not part of Wicca, it is part of what else she has pursued in addition to her (the) tradition. If you mean she's an Eclectic, it doesn't matter because it is not an pre-existing nor defined practice.
Yeah, that's pretty much what I am saying. Unless she completely abandons all Wiccan practices, ethics, and philosophy, then simply choosing to use an Appalachian folk magic spell within the parameters of Wiccan practice is still using the Wiccan structure, philosophy and ethics to a magical purpose. Hoodoo alone has none of those things, is usually practiced within any religion or no religion at all. It is a method, just like astrology, herbalism, tarot or any other 'extracurricular' studies one might find a Wiccan persuing and enhancing their practice with. However, they are not the core essentials of Wicca and therefore do not define it.

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#445 Apr 27, 2011
NM Desert Rat wrote:
<quoted text>
Like you, I have left several times and keep coming back. Sometimes I wish I knew the answer to that .
I think I know why we keep coming back, most of the time it is a warm, friendly and informative place to be and sometimes it is just fun to watch others try to get their heads out of their butts :P >cackle< xx

“NM Desert Rat”

Since: Mar 08

Elephant Butte, N.M.

#446 Apr 27, 2011
Kethry wrote:
<quoted text>
I think I know why we keep coming back, most of the time it is a warm, friendly and informative place to be and sometimes it is just fun to watch others try to get their heads out of their butts :P >cackle< xx
Interesting point and one I have to agree with.

“A witty saying proves nothing”

Since: Jul 08

Location hidden

#447 Apr 27, 2011
Kethry wrote:
<quoted text>
I think I know why we keep coming back, most of the time it is a warm, friendly and informative place to be and sometimes it is just fun to watch others try to get their heads out of their butts :P >cackle< xx
I keep coming back because of Kethry's big hooters, which I find to be warm, friendly and informative.

Since: Jul 07

Location hidden

#448 Apr 27, 2011
Clark Griswold wrote:
<quoted text>I keep coming back because of Kethry's big hooters, which I find to be warm, friendly and informative.
Kethrys (. Y .) Hooters.
ok ive put them away,can we move on from this now?(",)

Off topic Clark but and i'm far to busy on my other forums to report this sexism . and FYI its getting a tad boring now, change the record :P

what was this topic about again?? Maybe we should get serious now Clarkey baby :P x
Shadow

Grove City, OH

#449 Apr 28, 2011
William wrote:
<quoted text>
Nice judgement on your part, nothing like jumping to conclusions.
I'm not going to respond to your other refutations, if you can call them that, because they are simply jaded comments to try and support something you have chosen to accept without any facts to base your opinion on...
First of all I'm not Christian... and it's so called neo-witches, such as yourslf, who spread the same lies and inaccuracies regarding factual history that cause most of the problems modern witches face today. I suggest you get your facts straight and stop with all the wishful thinking.
You have CHOSEN to call yourself a witch and you obviously hate Christians so you combine the two and invent stories blaming Christians for all your woes, when in fact you weren't even alive when 'witches' were persecuted or deemed evil. And I use the term 'witch' lightly as most of those persecuted, tortured, burned or hanged for heresy...(yes heresy, since midwifery, potion-making etc were not crimes... only WITCHcraft because being in league with the devil was heresy and punishable by death as a crime against God)... were in fact CHRISTIAN. Witches were evil, and are still considered evil in most cultures, regardless of what name you call them. It is the act, not the label that makes something evil. You want to 'take back' a label you never owned in the first place, then when you don't like the negative baggage attached to said label you try to deny it ever existed and blame Christians for being responsible for untold lies and treachery as if they were committed against you personally just to deny you your witch name.
But by all means educate me, since you claim you know your subject.
Some of us take it too far yes, but you have to understand that most of us came from an oppresive christian backgraound and therefor have a bit of resentment. However I hope we can try to organize people to unite the worlds religions, so we can work together on issues. And yes I know it is a longshot but even a small group will satisfy me. And FYI it's only the fanaticul christians that shove their religion down my throut that pisses me off.

Blessed be )O(

“NM Desert Rat”

Since: Mar 08

Elephant Butte, N.M.

#450 Apr 28, 2011
Shadow wrote:
<quoted text>
Some of us take it too far yes, but you have to understand that most of us came from an oppresive christian backgraound and therefor have a bit of resentment. However I hope we can try to organize people to unite the worlds religions, so we can work together on issues. And yes I know it is a longshot but even a small group will satisfy me. And FYI it's only the fanaticul christians that shove their religion down my throut that pisses me off.
Blessed be )O(
Hi Shadow. It has been a while. Hope everything is going well for you.

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