wicca
Weed Eater You can collect 'em all!

Suzy got the red one
Sally got the white one
and Jessica, she got the black one

Soon, every mall store in the country will have the New Wicca Playset for all the little girlies to play with.

But wait..there's more!

If you act now, you'll get your own set of smelly incense and low quality crystals.

Hurry, kids! another industry seeks to get rich by decieving you!
010718
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Aimee My best friend is wiccan. It's kinda cool, she's always been one to get me to join the "old religion" as I call it. It does make a lot of sense, but for some reason I just don't have the patience to learn it, practice it, and moreover deal with people telling me I'll go to hell for it.. but every now and then, I practice my spells... I'm actually quite good at it.. surprisingly. 010719
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Karp It's frightening what people will believe in these days. It's saddening what people won't believe in these days. 010719
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Pythagorus Wicca is what I call the "brand name" of witchcraft. There has been a movement in america since the mid-nineties to bring witchcraft to the mainstream. Various marketing schemes have been launched and targeted at teenage girls, including movies, television, books, fashion, music, and accessories. Trying to make it "cool" while focusing on wrenching that dollar out of the "uncool" girl's pocket.
I would hardly say that's subtle.
Yet unsuspecting America, of course, pays no attention, and instead focuses on wealth and power (greed). Now, I'm sure no one stops to think about the potential hazzards of letting marketing schemes get out of hand, but let's remember Barney, ladies and gentlemen, ok? (joke)
Does it provide a need, or a service? It exercises spiritual movement, and serves as a faith-based mechanism, (it does take Faith to BELIEVE that your spells will come true, and your SPIRIT is exercised by Faith) things a body NEEDS, yet it does not do it for good purposes, which, when you look at history, that always ends up very, very bad. It redirects spiritual energy toward money, and like weed eater says, it will make a ruthless corporation rich. There are certainly better ways to exercise your spirit, (&mind, &body), too bad (or is it good) you can't use deceptive marketing for THOSE activities.
010719
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absent but still present 'does it bother you that i'm wiccan?'

no.

it bothers me that you just raped me. but other than that, i'm okay with you.
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*Ziima* I used to be Wiccan. But then I moved on to bigger and better things. Theres so much more to the world and so much more beyond the boundaries of Wicca. I am a Shamaness. Used to have a coven. Was the high priestess...but it dissolved. I'm glad. 010719
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evil grendel i never was much for the right_hand_path 010720
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ass facely i have a wicca chair on my porch 010720
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Inanna Arts and Crafts

Magic is the art and science of changing one's consciosness at will

Wicca is one religion that
does not view males as superior
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Jenna I've been trying to decide if I'm going to stay with it for a couple of months now. I don't know how its going to turn out.

Yes there is that movement to market to teenage girls. There's also a lot of really misleading books for those of all ages.

But there is some really insightful stuff out there. You have to seek it out.

Whatever you do, don't waste money on Silver Ravenwolf.

Why *shouldn't* Wicca be mainstream? Maybe then I could stop being lectured about going to hell.

Then again, probably not.
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CraZgrrL Umm... the Wiccan Rede (which is the basic, & pretty much only, "law" for Wiccans) states " 'An it harm none, do as ye will". In lamens terms, that's "Do what you like, as long as you're not hurting anyone, doing something against your or anyone else's will, and you're not trying to harm your self."
I think that's a golden-type rule that ALL should live by. Regardless of religion or non-religion. If you're pure of heart, Karma will be good to you. If you don't believe in "Karma", just do good things, O.k.? :)
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reenz .....Rocks 020520
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Zatumushgir The Rule in its entirety runs more like:


"A Wicca seeks to harm none; but if forced with the choice of two ills, he/she will choose the lesser."

Too many now days seem to forget that there are many Gods and Goddesses of war involved in the pantheons. This is because there are some things that you must fight for. The safty of one's family and village, for one...
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emily the second I know a lot of people who call themselves "wiccan" or "witches". They wear pentacles around their necks that say "look at me! be afraid, be very afraid!". I knew one girl, who wore one such pentacle, and lectured her friends (i not being one of them) on the secrets of spellcasting and ritual... and forgot it all in a month, and the pentacle thrown into a drawer somewhere I guess.

I'm a little different from the rest of them...

Wicca didn't find me by way of the throngs of modern culture and the newest "crazes". I found it. When I first read about it in a book my sister gave to me, I knew right away it was everything I'd always believed in, before it had a name. This book wasn't on Wicca itself (and thank god it wasn't Silver Ravenwolf) it was about the ancient celtic traditions of magic, about the 8 holidays and about the gods and goddesses... the spellcasting part that most self proclaimed witches are most drawn to and focused on wasn't as important to me as the ideas and philosophies about nature and the world...

I'd go on but I'm too tired right now.

Bleck. it's so fucking stupid to sit here saying "I'm diffent, i'm better", I've really got to stop now. That sort of thing always gets people into trouble.
020826
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Kitten I was Wiccan the day I was born, my distant family were Irish travellers. My Grandma taught me many things.

I love my religion, its a mixture of Wicca, Shamanism and Ancient Egyptian principles.

I will always follow this path.
020827
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Eowithien Its a very interesting religion to me, since I am Orthodox Christian (yes its pretty much the same as Greek Orthodox, and yes like My Big Fat Greek Wedding, except I'm not greek and people like that don't *really* exist). My friend is a hedge-witch and I respect her for her choice from going to Greek Orthodox to Wicca. Its a very unusual switch but I can see why. Religion is very confusing because of the beliefs (which are pretty much the same, I mean the laws and principles are) and I like Wicca because of its history.

I think it is odd that Wiccans believe that its been around for so long when everyone else thinks that its only been around since the witch-burning times. I have yet to see a spell work (or to see one at all) but I plan and paying more attention in the future.
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Eowithien I am thinking of converting. Wicca is everything I've ever wanted to believe in and believed in. 030301
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User24 I like the idea of wicca, just not sure if I believe everything it's about (mainly because I don't know about it, but I'm learning.) 030326
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pipedream you can embody 'wiccan' principles of peace and loving yourself (which are pretty much present in nearly every religion) without being wiccan. i think this wiccan thing is a mixture of wanting to be different and ignorance about your religion. i'm not the best authority on my religion, but i know what it says, and it sounds a lot like peace, fraternity, intelligence and loving yourself and God. wither wicca, or anything else, for that matter? im not saying wicca is bad, im just saying that you can find all the things wicca talks of around you if you make yourself aware of it without having to put yourself in yet another label. 030327
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User24 pipedream: that is absolutely true, however, if I beleive X,Y and Z, and religion A also beleives those things, I want to find out what that religion thinks about other things, to see if I agree with them, if I agree totally, I am part of that religion, willingly or not. 030328
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endless desirse wow. good point there user. i guess whether or not you call yourself something, if you believe what that religion believes, you are connected to that religion. but then why doesn't it work in the opposite direction? some people call themselves a religion but do not practice/believe in the principles and ideas of it, so are they not connected to it?

my thoughts on wicca. . .my church had a thing on it and completely comdemned it and all of its followers. i really don't think it is that bad at all and i find it absolutely fascinating. i don't think that the church realizes how similiar their basic concepts are to that religion. they are just so blind. and never want to be wrong. always just hearing there own voice and never anything else around them.
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the idiot blatherskite crap. i spelled my own name wrong.
i do that sometimes with ellyn. i spell it ellen the way everyone else does. i always get so mad at myself.
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User24 an it harm none; do as ye will 030629
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joe What we think of as the modern revival of witchcraft began in the 40's and 50's. Gerald Gardner published his books on Wicca in England in the 50's. It's apparent much of his ritual structure and concepts come from Golden Dawn material, and Aleister Crowley's. Doreen Valiente wrote the original "The Charge of the Goddess", and "The Wiccan Rede", also written by her, is actually a long poem in it's original form.

All this nonsense about Wicca being a pre-historic religion are.. well.. nonsense. People like to believe it is because they feel it makes them morally superior; it allows them to say to themselves, "My religion is better than yours!"

GRAMMAR (since many don't seem to get it.): You follow the religion called Wicca. You are Wiccan, you are a Wiccan. You are not "[a] Wicca".

Not all witches are Wiccan. People often use the term "Wicca" for any religio-magic system that has roots in folk practices. This is incorrect usage.

Not all Neo-Pagans are Wiccan. See above.
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who i am doesnt matter anymore i enjoy reading up on it, i belive in it. and maybe one day ill truley practice it but for today i dont want a religion. 031021
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marked . 031022
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klasdl 40 sdl f the church is blind, endless, that's true, but in some respects, it sees more than anything; it's not only a religion, but a religion with a budget and a business plan, add it's history of hostile takeovers of other (often indigenous) religions, and you can soon see why it's been so historically successful. 031027
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skye wicca is the most beautiful thing i've ever known. 031107
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u24 http://www.religioustolerance.org/boy_arm2.htm 040202
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u24 it's what I've come to expect from civilised society. 040202
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u24 you sit in the sunshine, and watch the grass blow in the wind. You close your eyes, and can still feel the breeze blowing about you.

Now you feel the wind, and experience everything it is touching, from the blades of grass making a tiny swishing sound around you, to the trees on the hills opposite.

And you understand that this is not man made, that the wind blows, and everything responds in a beautifull flow that is beyond our comprehension.

You lie back, and feel the grass bend under your body, and feel the heat of the sun, and the whisper of the wind over your face. You try to open your eyes, but the sun shines so brightly that it is all you can do to squint up at the sky. Birds circle about, and in the distance you can hear the sea, slowly lapping against the shore.

The world is around you, and you are a part of it, and in that moment, you feel lighter than air, and wish that it could last forever.

this is why.

.
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iNsEcUrE_GoTh_GiRl I am thinking of converting. Wicca is everything I've ever wanted to believe in and believed in.

that is succintly everything i feel about Wicca, and it's already been said.
it's good to know that other people know the feeling too.
040403
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moron succinctly* 040403
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ambermoon i have been studying wicca for a wile now and though i wouldnt say that i am a witch id like to be. im finding it hard to remeber all the Gods and Goddesses and what they are called apon for. i have a lot of questions about the whole thing. why are there so many? could you just bypass the pantheons, *witch im finding it a hard job to choose from*, and just call apon the Lord and Lady?
i know that there are some online wiccan schools mabey i should inrole in one of them.
if any one would like to net work with me just email me id love to share info and if you could help me with any of my questions id be greatful.
anyone??? goth girl? user? anyone???
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ethereal I was Wiccan for a good while, and I prayed to the Lord and Lady. It was more sensical. 040404
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iNsEcUrE_GoTh_GiRl please can i email you then ambermoon?
i'd love to learn more, especially learning with somebody as opposed to on my own.
i'll try and find some online schooling sites, i've never heard of any but i'll look anyway :)

by the way, i just read a book called 'wither' by john passarella, it's a really good book about witches and wicca and other things relating to the two. Unfortunately, he has the grammatical error mentioned earlier; he keeps saying the the main character is a 'wicca' and not a 'wiccan'. I'm emailing him about it, it gets really irritating after a while, lol.
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u24 witchvox.com is a good place to poke about, expecially witchvox.com/xwords.html

dig around the essays until you find something interesting.

What you (probably) won't find is a how to be wiccan/pagan guide, but what you will find if the views and morals of wiccans and pagans(*) from which you can get a good feel for the type of people who class themselves this way, and if you think you'd fit in, well, you're half way there.

But don't take my word for it, there are a lot of people here who know a lot more than me about this.

(*) I'm not sure of the distinction between wicca and paganism, anyone care to help me on this one?
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u24 oh, btw, I joined an online email group thingy, but I found that it was very introverted; closed in to it's way of practicing, which is great if you've looked at everything else and decided "that's the one", but I wanted something which looked at all the different faces of the religion, which is where witchvox comes in very handy, they cover every aspect of every subgroup. so... just a word of warning, really, what you read on one site/in one book, may totally contradict something else.

it's very open to interpretation.
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u24 (again) interestingness:
http://www.witchvox.com/basics/witchcraf
t101_1.html
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iNsEcUrE_GoTh_GiRl thank you, i'm going to check it out now.
about the difference between wiccans and pagans, searching on google brings up essays and groups and messageboards that deal with the different aspects of them, and outline the differences if you want to look there.
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iNsEcUrE_GoTh_GiRl http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=%22wicca+and+pagan%22&as_q=difference
______________________________

that has a list of sites on which have the difference, and this is one site which says it;

Pagan is a term that used to mean "country dweller". There is a school of thought that also terms Pagan as anyone that does not believe in God (in this sense I mean Jesus). But in our times and minds, Pagan is a general term used for those who follow the traditions of Wicca, Shamanism, and other polytheistic, majickal religions. Wicca is a comtemporary Pagan religion with it's spiritual roots in nature. We have Deities (hence the polytheistic nature of Wicca) that represent both the Goddess and the God. You will find that most Wiccans will call themselves Pagan and visa versa, but you will also find that alot of Wiccans will simply refer to themselves as simply a Witch.

_________________________________

I think that the difference is that pagan is the equivalent of the huge category of christianity, for example, and the groups within that, like catholics and evangelists are the equivalent of wicca and shamanism etc etc, they are the subcategories.

sorry if that was obvious to everyone but me lol.
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iNsEcUrE_GoTh_GiRl Just as Christianity has different expressions of worship—Catholic, Methodist,
Baptist, Presbyterian, and so on—Paganism has different strands. Groups known
as Wiccans, Druids, Shamans, Sacred Ecologists, and Heathens are all part of the
Pagan community.


What unites these different Pagan groups, for the most part, are deep ties to nature
and the worship of multiple deities, both goddesses and gods.

The Pagan Federation lists three guiding principles that define modern-day Paganism:

Love for and kinship with nature. Reverence for the life force and its ever-renewing
cycles of life and death.

A positive morality, in which individuals are responsible for discovering and
developing their true nature in harmony with the outer world and larger community.
This is often expressed as: Do what you will, as long as it harms no one.

Recognition of the divine, which transcends gender, acknowledging both the female and male aspects of a deity.

______________________________________

just to back up my point there.
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u24 agreed, though I think a lot of shamans would consider themselves part of an entirely different belief set (while acknowledeging the similarities)

But I was looking for the actual distinction between wicca and paganism.
Sure, the term 'pagan' was first coined (afaik) by the romans, describing the heathens, which would cover all the above mentioned, but I'd like to know exactly what makes wiccans different from, say, druids, or shamans. A lot of the time, the difference seems to be only in approach, wiccans practice their beliefs as witches, whereas Pagans simply believe them. maybe. ?
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ambermoon goth girl, yes please e mail me!
ambermoon420@aol.com
and thank you user ill check them out!
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iNsEcUrE_GoTh_GiRl boy do i have a red face
sorry about that then, ignore all the stuff i posted about it (cringes)
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smurfus rex I would guess that the difference lies in how the rituals are conducted. In other words, where do the different practitioners cast their sacred space, and how, and with whose guidance and protection, and with what instruments of focus...to what ends do they undertake their rituals...with whom do they have an affinity or following...etc.

It would be easy to say that "Wiccans", "Druids", "Shamans" and so on are sort of like Pagan denominations, and I think that such a definition makes some measure of sense. But obviously there are differences between the interpretations that afford some individuality in identity.

Where am I going with this? Well, let's look at it this way (for the purposes of discussion):

--Wicca: that path which is oriented toward matriarchal divinity, based on a modern interpretation of ancient Celtic elements and rituals, influenced by the writings of Gerald Gardner, and incorporates such tools as tarot decks, crystals, altars, and items dealing with the phases of the moon.

--Druidism: that path which is oriented toward natural divinity, based on a historical interpretation of ancient Celtic and Britannic elements and rituals, influenced by diverse authors, and incorporates such tools as runes, Ogham writing, forest groves, and items dealing with the myriad types of trees.

--Shamanism: that path which is oriented toward animism and animalistic spirituality, based on diverse indigenous traditions and rituals, also influenced by authors who have studied or participated in these indigenous cultures, and incorporates such tools as sweat lodges, "medicine wheels", vision quests, and items dealing with animals and their different characteristics.

What these three examples share, basically, is a belief in the Earth as Mother Deity, in the inherent natural wisdom that can be found in plants, animals, and minerals, and in the assistance of specific ritual tools to focus the practitioner's attention toward a specific goal. What they also share are elements generally associated with their respective ritual systems which are incorporated into other ritual systems within Paganism in order to create unique and heterogeneous systems practiced by pagans of every stripe. It is not outside the realm of possibility that a pagan who considers herself Wiccan uses Ogham writing to conceal her rituals in her Book of Shadows, prefers to use runes instead of tarot, and regularly communicates with her totem animal guide.

I don't know if this answered your question, u24, but there's my handful of change...:)
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misstree go smurfus! whoda thunk you got so much smarts stashed away. ;) very good pinning down of the amorphous, and props as well to many of the others here... and i just have to throw in a minor mention to yay odinists, as i wouldn't have believed there were enough in the world for it to be plural unless i'd met them...

anyone have any ideas what general category modern-origin religions would fall into? or is there one? and no arguments about historical reinterpretations being basically a new origin; i'm talking about things like church_of_the_subgenius, discordianism, satanism (as modern day knows it), objectivism (sorry miss rand, it *is* a religion), and i'm sure there's more but i can't think of them... lotsa miscellany and spiritual mutts in the religious pool as of late... and would things like taking egyptian and/or greek pantheons count as miscellaneous pagan, or is there a more precise term?
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smurfus rex thanks, misstree. sometimes I surprise m'self too. :)

as to your question, you could go a couple of different ways. The first, and most bland, is to lump modern-origin religions into the umbrella category of "New Age". That's where I put the "Other" religion books when I worked at Barnes and Noble. :) Or, you could include them in a category that differentiates them from what is usually considered "traditional" religions. I don't know if this category already exists, but I'll describe it anyway:

In general discussions of the differences between the three global monotheistic religions, Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, references are often made to the "revealed religions", the three just mentioned and often including Zoroastrianism (because of the Avesta). I have sensed this feeling within these discussions that revealed religions are more valid simply due to their documentation. While I don't necessarily agree with this feeling, I do agree that there are specific differences between revealed religions and what I call "developed religions". For me, developed religions are ones that evolve over time through tradition, custom, individual interpretations, and commonly accepted beliefs.

I think all of the modern-origin religions you mentioned as well as the historically-based neo-pagan religions count as developed religions. I'm not sure this answer is less bland than saying they're all New Age, but I'm open to discussion. :)
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u24 goth girl (don't mind if I call you that, do ya?); don't be silly, everything you said is still valid and useful (plus it saved me the time searching; do you remember the sites you got the info from?).

misstree; yes, that last bit was more what I meant to ask; I use a lot of wiccan tools, along with other bits and bobs I've picked up, is the umbrella term 'neo-pagan', or 'new-age' the only one I'd fit into?

king of the smurfs;
nice informative list, and I liked what you said about documentation (or other attributes such as age, rigidity and number of interpretations) tending to equal validity in many people minds.

in other news;
http://www.witchvox.com/xtrads.html has a good list of some branches that loosely fall under the neo-pagan category, I haven't actually looked at them in much detail yet (and yes, I do actually own shares in witchvox ;p)

It's interesting that a religion that was essentially invented by Gardener, and widely known as such, is as popular as it is; for me, and seemingly many others, there's something that 'just sounds right', as goth girl said, "Wicca is everything I've ever wanted to believe in"
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smurfus rex There are some who say the same thing about Scientology. I don't know if this is true, but I was told that the ideas for the book "Dianetics" and for the Church of Scientology were based on a bet between Harlan Ellison and L. Ron Hubbard that Hubbard could not invent a belief system out of his own imagination and get other people to follow it.

While such a claim does not necessarily negate the validity of Scientology principles, I will grant that a religion system, whether revealed by angels or invented by men, is real and valid if it resonates in the hearts and minds of its followers.

So don't let anyone tell you that Wicca isn't real just because Gerald Gardner invented it.
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mt see: foma 040407
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anonymous hello 040819
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Akashas Child Blessed Be 040915
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Nightshade636 anyone in here in a coven? i need to find one 041012
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marked . 041022
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u24 nightshade; why do you need to find one? 041022
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Nightshade636 cause i think i would get more guidance from a coven than from "teen witch"

and anyone in here done the "great rite"?
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ambermoon DO NOT read silverravenwolf!!! she may give some insight to the religion but if youed like some thing yu can use
try scott cunningham
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u24 I think witchvox.com has got some very useful articles - right at the bottom there's a section called adult essays which I've found quite useful. There's a book by Anton and Mina Adams called 'witches and wizards', and teresa moorey's 'introduction to paganism' (or paganism for beginners, can't remember) are both good resources. I found moorey a little dogmatic, Mina gave a good, if a little short, history of witchcraft, and some good practical examples.

I've heard bad stuff about silver ravenwolf and good stuff about cunningham.

There 2 or 3 very basic articles at

http://www.puremango.co.uk/cm_collected_knowledge_5.php

(my own site, not my own articles)
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u24 . 041109
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u24 erm.... 041109
what's it to you?
who go
blather
from