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I have had this book in my library of magic for several years, but I have only now found time to read it carefully. It turns out to be one of the few really insightful.
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Written By: J. Gordon Melton. See Article History. Origins and beliefs Although there were precursors to the movement, the origins of modern Wicca can be traced to a retired British civil servant, Gerald Brousseau Gardner — Facts Matter. Start Your Free Trial Today.

Origins and beliefs

Learn More in these related Britannica articles:. Adherents to Wicca worship the Goddess, honour nature, practice ceremonial magic, invoke the…. Nature worship , system of religion based on the veneration of natural phenomena—for example, celestial objects such as the sun and moon and terrestrial objects such as water and fire. Christianity , major religion, stemming from the life, teachings, and death of Jesus of Nazareth the Christ, or the Anointed One of God in the 1st century ce. It has a constituency of….

NRMs are characterized by a number of…. History at your fingertips. Sign up here to see what happened On This Day , every day in your inbox!

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Notice. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. More About Wicca 3 references found in Britannica articles Assorted References history of new religious movements In new religious movement: Nature religions: Neo-Paganism and Wicca witchcraft In witchcraft: Meanings In witchcraft: Contemporary witchcraft.

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Help us improve this article! Contact our editors with your feedback. Introduction Origins and beliefs Later developments. Wicca has no central book like the Bible that spells out its beliefs, so witches practice their religion in different ways. Some witches meet in groups called covens or circles, while others practice alone.

Why are movies, television and magazines so obsessed with Wicca and witchcraft? And why are teens, especially girls, so enthusiastic about picking up the trend?

America Horror Stories 8 - Magic

Here are a few factors that might help explain this phenomenon:. Girl Power: According to its own myths, Wicca began more than 35, years ago within earth's very first civilization. In this culture, women ruled. Life was peaceful and prosperous, and people worshiped nature and the goddess.

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The serene existence was supposedly shattered when male warriors invaded the nurturing female-led communities. Wiccans say that throughout history, they have been fighting to overcome the oppression of a male-ruled society. Today, Wiccans claim there is a goddess revival. They say women are reclaiming their power after living under male domination for too long. They call for women to usher in a new era of peace by throwing off the "shackles" of "male-dominated monotheistic religions" such as Christianity and follow the goddess again in all her forms.

It's easy to see why this myth has huge feminist appeal. Just Plain Power: The thought of being able to control spiritual forces sounds pretty good to many teens who otherwise might feel powerless.

finding magic the teachings of an american coven Manual

Wiccans boast that their religion gives even young witches a great deal of control. Also, the secrecy of rituals may provide a sense of power. Saving the Earth: Teens who have grown up hearing news about the rapid destruction of the environment are likely to feel compelled to do something to help stop it.

Wicca seems to provide an opportunity to treat nature with great care and reverence. Having It My Way: Wicca has no set rules or absolute standards. Think back to The Rede, which tells followers to "do what you will. As one Wiccan high priestess notes, "Within the circle there are no absolutes — no rights and wrongs. Since most teens don't believe in truth or absolute moral standards, Wicca can appear to be the perfect mix 'n' match religion. Unfortunately, though these things may sound good, they're deceptions that lead followers down a path to destruction. Kathy was raised in the church but rejected its teaching in her teens.

She lived in Salem, Mass.

Origins and beliefs

It was certainly non-conformist, and I liked the mystery surrounding it. But after a few years, things turned sour. I became very good at what I was being taught. My teacher never acknowledged Satan but did say there was something called 'the abyss' that we should avoid. For Kathy, however, that proved to be difficult. I started to shiver and broke out into a cold sweat, although it was the height of summer.

The Hidden Traps of Wicca

A cold wind blew in through my windows, startling me. Now I was terrified. I hugged my knees to my chest and gasped as a legion of what can only be described as black demons encircled my head, all laughing at me. I started screaming out my Wiccan spells to rebuke them, hoping they would disappear. That only made things worse. The laughter escalated with each spell I tried. I hadn't thought about that in a long time. In a loud voice I called upon Jesus Christ to rid the room of this dark presence.

Instantly they were gone, and my bedroom was once again calm and warm. My life was never the same after that. The next day on the way to school Kathy told herself, You have some serious personal inventory to do.


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She walked into a church that afternoon and has never looked back. Kathy is a Christian now and warns women who think Wicca is harmless.


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I am here to tell them there is a lot more to it than that. Lots of them haven't had the experiences I have. It's like the warning on a pack of cigarettes: 'Wicca is dangerous and could be hazardous to your health. Since you're reading this article, you're probably curious about how Wicca measures up to the Bible. Can you be a Christian and dabble in Wicca? What does God have to say about magic and the supernatural world?

Keep reading! One thing Wiccans have right is that there is a supernatural world that interacts constantly with the world we see, touch and smell. Unfortunately, they believe it's okay for humans to interact with spirits and spiritual forces any way we choose. To the contrary, the apostle Paul writes that the spiritual realm is potentially dangerous. Therefore, we need to treat it the way God tells us to and be prepared for spiritual battles of good versus evil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Therefore put on the full armor of God so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Ephesians Many Wiccans say that Wicca is harmless and nature-loving — that it has nothing to do with evil, Satanism and dark forces. But that is exactly what Satan wants them to believe! Seances and contact with the unknown are not uncommon among Wiccans, although not all Wiccans actively seek communication with the dead. Divination such as tarot , runes , and astrology are often used as well. Whether you're holding a seance or dumb supper, or simply trying to identify and find your spirit guide , it's commonly accepted that the dead and other entities are out there and can be reached through various methods of communication.