What is and is not WiccanApril 25, 2010 by di | Filed under the Big Picture.
What is and is not Wiccan is not entirely mine to say. But I do want to share this observation:
Wicca as an overall religion does not have a central authority. This means that no one really gets to say what is and isn’t Wiccan, although people do try, and sometimes even I wish we could go “Uh, …. NO.” For instance, Klingon Wicca is just hard on my brain, especially since Klingons are much more in line with Asatru. Although Asatruar would likely not handle such a thing with… good humor.
Gardnerian Wicca has the most evidence supporting it as the first Wiccan tradition. OK, I’m fine with that.1
Then the religion evolved as a belief system that actually has the hallmarks of a strong spiritual path will. A lot of Gardnerians I’ve read seem very unhappy about this. One or two go so far as to try to classify other Wiccans as “neoWiccan” or just “not Wiccan” because it is not their style of Wiccan, and do not use their methods or standards of initiation, whatever those might be.
I just realized why I think this is shit behavior. I don’t care if someone thinks I’m Wiccan or not. That’s between me and God/ess, and since the divine and I are still talking there’s nothing another human being has got to say about my validity or lack thereof that I’d ever for a moment take seriously.
But I realized why it bothered me anyway. It’s a repeat of Christian history. It’s exactly what the Roman Catholic church does with any other style of Christianity. “Oh, that doesn’t exist.”2 It even has the same ring of authority to it. I’m not particularly a rebel, but my call to Wicca was just as legitimate as anyone else’s, and I don’t think God/ess actually gives a flying hobo about any religion.3 The we’re first entitlement is so… oldest sibling syndrome.
I’m not allowing comments on this one because a)like it or not, it’s a comparison that needs to be pointed out and b)I think we all need to think about it for awhile first because it’s bound to jerk a few knees and c)after the chest-pounding superiority that got peed on the True Blood post, I will no longer tolerate any self-aggrandizing shenanigans in my own house. I’m learning by observing rather than discussing at the moment. This is what I’ve observed and what I think about it. And unless I have reason to, I don’t really see myself discussing it further unless it becomes a problem to solve.
- It seems like a solid faith practice, although among the Gardnerians I know in Minneapolis there’s not one I would ever stand circle with. There’s too much of an undercurrent of somebody making decisions for me, and I don’t know what that is, but I know it’s human and not divine and I don’t like it. [↩]
- If the Gardnerians try to adopt Alexandrians the way the Catholic church attempted to adopt the Lutheran church in 1991 I’m going to fall over laughing. [↩]
- Religion is the up/down escalator to transport humans to the divine, and I’ve yet to hear Eros say, “But are you Gardnerian?” [↩]