Thursday, July 08, 2004

WitchCrafting and Spiral Dancing: Learning to be a better Witch

I would love to meet with and work with a coven, grove, whatever that was willing to work through The Spiral Dance by Starhawk or WitchCrafting by Phyllis Curot.

Both of them detail a Wiccan theology and practice that I am very comfortable with and attracted to. In fact, it was The Spiral Dance that really convinced me that I was a Wiccan, indeed had been for years without a name for my belief system. I remember that I was reading it on a flight to Chicago a couple of years ago and I was getting more and more excited as I read it. I was just about ready to turn to my boss who was sitting next to me and go “Hey, this is me man! I’m a Witch!” I did not do that. In fact, when he asked me what I was reading I kind of gave some lame “Oh, I’m reading about world religions” bullshit. He out and out asked me if I was a Witch and I denied it.

I felt like Peter, betraying Jesus three times before the cock crowed. I no longer think I would lie, so I am glad he does not ask. He is, to some extent a fundamentalist Christian. I do not like living in a broom closet and in fact am out to many of my coworkers (the statue of Isis on my desk is the giveaway).

I have, for the past year, tried to work the program in WitchCrafting, in fact, the book has traveled with me to New Jersey and Chicago. I have not done very well with it on my own, which kind of mirrors my experiences with The Artist’s Way. Working programs like that in a group is something I will work at and attempt to follow. On my own, without the feedback of others, I tend to slack off.

Both Starhawk and Curott practice a Witchcraft I am attracted to. I can identify with being an urban Witch trying to live in tune with nature, a topic they both deal with. Their concept of a loving, caring Deity with whom I can develop an intimate one on one relationship mirrors my own concept of a Higher Power. In addition, both encourage a social activism (more Starhawk than Currott) to make the world around you a better place.

The social activism to me is very important. I have been an activist for years and in college was very involved. My alcoholism took that away from me—activism interfered with my drinking and so I gave up activism. I think I made a poor choice there. It has been heartening and refreshing to start getting involved again. Starhawk has provided me an anchor in the Wiccan world for my political activities.

I no longer try to carry the weight of the world on my shoulders as an activist. I have learned from AA that the best I can do is to try to clean up and improve what I can, and leave the rest to the Goddess. So that is a great relief there—I am not responsible for saving the world. Wicca and Paganism are non-prosthelytizing religions, so I am free to be a positive example of Witchcraft and Paganism rather than an evangelist for Witchcraft. That is a freeing concept there.

Where Curott speaks to me is in her exploration of the idea that all magic comes from the Divine. I have had difficulty with magic from day one in Wicca and Paganism because I do not believe in magic the same way that most Wiccans and Pagans do. I don’t rush out and do spells just because. Nor do I necessarily believe I can just go and do magic. Curott’s idea that magic comes from us invoking, evoking, drawing upon the Divine in our lives is exactly in line with my beliefs. I do not do the magic—I draw from the Source, the Goddess for magic.

Good Morning Goddess Brigit, my name is Andy and I am an alcoholic child of Yours. Speaking of magic, thank You for my sobriety today—I can’t do that on my own. I need Your help. I’d like to go ahead and surrender the outcomes of the day to You. I will try to do the next right thing, to learn Your will for me and carry that out. But after I have done my part, I will practice letting go. Please be with me all day today and help me to stay sober all day long. May I be of service to You and my fellow man.

Adjuva Brigitta! Thank You! Blessed Be!