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goDez
August 26th, 2004, 05:45 PM
Hello all! I'm currently reading Wicca for Life by Raymond Buckland. I was fairly enjoying it, although I have some points I would like to discuss about!

(For anyone who has the book, page numbers included so I cannot missquote. Disclaimer: Any error I get from not being able to translate the book correctly, please dont kill me, English is not my first language.)



Page 5: "Unlike the "Old Relegion" (as we might term Witchcraft), the "New Religion" was human-made and full of contradictions.".

There might be no certainty at all, and this is my weakest point of critic, I must say. But Witchcraft is in my opinion not to be termed any "Old Religion". Witchcraft is a craft and not a religion.
Bucklands' whole idea of the Old Religion vs. the New Religion seems kind of odd. Actually I believe it nurtures the symptoms of Fluffyness, by just accepting that our great, great ancestors believed in Nature gods and were thus followers of Witchcraft. He also does not provide any specific source for his information on wether Witchcraft is the Old Religion.
He quotes Margaret Murray as an informative source to all of this, perhaps, on page 4 (Bottom of the page).

Please read this regarding Margaret Murray:
http://wicca.timerift.net/murray.html



Page 16: "In Wicca, there is a tenet, or law, to guide you: "An it harm none, do what thou wilt.". This is known as the Wiccan Rede, the Witchcraft Law.".

In my opinion, the Rede is NOT a law, its just what its entitled, a REDE. An advice to live by. It not has anything to do with Witchcraft either, it's strictly WICCAN (The name says it all, once again.)
I'm sure there have been much discussions about if the Rede applies to Witchcraft, and wether or not to exchange the terms of Wicca and Witchcraft with eachother. Please tell me your opinion about this.

then, also on the Rede
Page 17: Golden Rules.
Here Buckland compares the Rede to statements made in other Religions regarding Ethics.
I quote:


Page 17: "No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother of which he desires for himself. - Islam".

The Islamic notion regards that ONLY against OTHER Islamic people should be acted upon with care. This seems like a small thing, but on the real Buckland makes a huge error. He defies the fact that the Wiccan Rede involves ALL living things (all to which harm could be made).
To Illustrate my comment, he also quotes the Christianity, Judaism and Taoism "Golden Rules", involving respectively "men", "fellowman" and "neighbour". These religions involve human beings in their rule of ethics only. NOT animals and plants. Thus, we could not compare the Rede to any of them; the idea of harm and the balance that should be brought upon ones life into harming and living in harmony with self is DIFFERENT from that of any other religion than it is in Wicca.

I'm not really far in the book, I just hope this list of personal complaints does not grow any further.

Now you might ask, why rant about this author? Well, I'm quite sure you all know Buckland: he's America's best known author probably, for starting the first U.S. Coven and being it's self-claimed "American Leading Authority" (reading on the back of the book, that is).

Am I the first to encounter these problems?
Please don't flame, but let's discuss in peace...

Blessed Be.

goDez
August 28th, 2004, 03:01 PM
Um.. KICK!

Nobody read this book? :<

DebLipp
August 28th, 2004, 08:47 PM
I haven't read the book. I have complaints with other things he's written so I don't buy his new books. But the stuff you're complaining about is largely about who Bucky is and the era he comes from. The Wicca that Bucky knows is a product of the early 1960s. It was normal and acceptable to quote Murray and to call Wicca "The Old Religion" in those days. Apparently, Bucky never felt the need to change.

I make a conscious effort to stay on the internet on boards like this to keep in touch with the way people talk about Wicca & Paganism, and to see with my own eyes how it's changed. If you've been around a long time, the massive changes are surprising. So if he's not staying in touch with the most recent thinking (and I don't blame him, really, one can get tired of reading beginner stuff over and over for 30 years) he would naturally write the way he's always written.

Ben Gruagach
August 28th, 2004, 10:35 PM
I haven't read the book. I have complaints with other things he's written so I don't buy his new books. But the stuff you're complaining about is largely about who Bucky is and the era he comes from. The Wicca that Bucky knows is a product of the early 1960s. It was normal and acceptable to quote Murray and to call Wicca "The Old Religion" in those days. Apparently, Bucky never felt the need to change.

I make a conscious effort to stay on the internet on boards like this to keep in touch with the way people talk about Wicca & Paganism, and to see with my own eyes how it's changed. If you've been around a long time, the massive changes are surprising. So if he's not staying in touch with the most recent thinking (and I don't blame him, really, one can get tired of reading beginner stuff over and over for 30 years) he would naturally write the way he's always written.

I agree with you, Deb. I've seen the exact things you're describing too in the twenty+ years I've been involved in Wicca. It's actually sort of funny how things can change so dramatically and people forget that it was any different before. The idea that Wicca isn't an intact tradition handed down from before the Christian era wasn't widespread (or even very popular) until Ronald Hutton's "Triumph of the Moon" came out in 1999 but the way many people talk you'd think it was standard Wiccan teaching back to Gardner's first coven.

One thing I do wonder about though is why the editors responsible for bringing the more recent books (including Ray Buckland's newer ones) to market are apparently not keeping up on the latest trends and at least informing the authors so they can at least try to look like they are up to date in their new books. Even if they want to stick by older theories (like Margaret Murray's ideas about witchcraft) they could say that despite more recent conclusions the older material is still valid and then explain why.

Gede
August 29th, 2004, 09:02 AM
MM~
Actually Wicca for Life was published a while ago (I believe so anyway) and is simply an extension of his earlier book, or maybe it is the other way around. From an interview I read on the Wiccan/Pagan times a while back, he seems to be a fairly reasonable fellow who is evolving alongside Wicca as a religion.

I found his Complete Book of Witchcraft a very interesting rendition of the Wiccan religion and some of his chapters really helped open my eyes or rather gave more founding to things I already knew and practiced.

Namaste, Gede...

goDez
August 29th, 2004, 02:51 PM
Gede:

So you're saying it's just an old book and Bucky's (lol @ your terming Deborah Lipp..) view has probably changed now as well?

Ben:
Interesting theory. I think I would really welcome a book that is on the old vs new "style" of Wicca, because while anywhere on the net Murray's theory's are being rejected, it's almost never explained out clearly WHY..

Thanks to everybody for replying!

Ben Gruagach
August 29th, 2004, 04:00 PM
Ben:
Interesting theory. I think I would really welcome a book that is on the old vs new "style" of Wicca, because while anywhere on the net Murray's theory's are being rejected, it's almost never explained out clearly WHY..

Probably the best place to start if you want to understand why people are saying Margaret Murray's theories about witchcraft are not valid is to read Ronald Hutton's "The Triumph of the Moon." It covers the development of Wicca in a lot of depth and is quite scholarly. Hutton also has a subsequent book out called "Witches, Druids, and King Arthur" that elaborates on some of the material with things he thought of since "The Triumph of the Moon" was published.

I do think that we should look at books in context of when they were published and what was known at the time. Unfortunately "Wicca for Life" isn't off the hook for the questionable history because it was published in 2001 -- which was long enough after books like Hutton's "Triumph of the Moon" (which came out in 1999) that Buckland really should have been aware of it even if he hadn't read it himself.

By the way, I noticed that Buckland has a new book on solitary witchcraft out now. I glanced through it briefly in the store yesterday but didn't buy a copy. Has anyone else seen it? Has anyone read it? Is it just more of the same but from a solitary viewpoint or is it a groundbreaking book that everyone really must read?

goDez
August 31st, 2004, 03:15 PM
I have not read it.
You are right on the fact that he probably SHOULD figured by then.
I have read The Triumph of the Moon. Or at least, i'm still struggling through it, its a difficult book imo.

Gede
September 1st, 2004, 01:16 AM
MM~
I just did some research and found out that the book was published in March 2002 by Citadel Press, so now I've gone and proven myself wrong, but I hate being wrong anyway, so I had to climb out of my own little self-imposed rut there :lilangel: It's kinda depressing that some people don't part with old ideas, or do so in such passion that they forget reason and logic have a place in spirituality as well, as it evolves and develops alongside our own growth as a community. Oh well...

Namaste, Gede...

edenbolake
September 2nd, 2005, 01:22 PM
Page 5: "Unlike the "Old Relegion" (as we might term Witchcraft), the "New Religion" was human-made and full of contradictions.". Notice here he says in ( as we might term.) Might means could or perhaps some of us do.

To some the wiccan Rede is a law and to others it isn't . To some it is a code to live by or a guide to live by . Wicca For Life The way of the Craft From Birth to Summerland's first printing was Sept. 2001 . I think we should remember that all authors have their own opinions of Witchcraft and they are allowed to print it . For instance, if someone read our personal book of shadows which should be based on what we have chosen to practice and not what everyone else does, they would probably think us a little off in the noggin' so to speak because it would be totally different from their opinion and belief system. I know my ancestor's book of shadows would surely blow somebody's mind with the first ten pages. I feel Mr. Buckland wrote according to the way he was taught. Now, plainly stated on the back of the cover: with the understanding of what witches really are , this book studies the make-up of a wiccan's life , from birth to death , "SHOWING IT AS A MODEL ON WHICH TO BUILD ONE'S OWN LIFE" In other words he never said this is gospel for everyone or this is right for everyone . He simpley gave us this book as a model to fashion our lives by . "TO BUILD ONE'S OWN"

also it says :"you can make use of ages-old magic to meet your goals and to create your "own" reality.

I think if you read the book for what it was really meant to be then you will see that it is a simple guide or a book really of suggestions that you can adapt to your own practices. If you read it as a guide book and not as something that gos against what you believe or don't believe then you will get more out of the book and see it for the wonderfully informative book that it is. It is all in how you perceive the content. Kind of like tomatoe tomotto . Read the book , take what you can use and adapt to your own practices and leave the rest alone . It is as simple as that. That is what is called building your own reality.I also think that if we are so good at picking things apart we should be good at being picked apart , so , why don't we all write books about how we believe and see what it's like?.

blessings Lady Edenbolake

stella01904
May 3rd, 2006, 09:28 PM
MM ~ I have Wicca For Life. And I agree that Witchcraft IS a religion. Only people who came along later try to say that it is not. I don't feel like having the argument yet again, you won't convince me - I am simply stating where I stand.

I had a wonderful experience with this book. A friend of mine who I knew for many years passed a few years ago. I could not get to the funeral, it was very far away, so I ran my own ritual at the same time the funeral was taking place in the town where he had lived. I adapted the ceremony from Wicca For Life for solitary use. I usually use Grimassi's rituals, but for some reason I couldn't find his that day. I looked in the books and couldn't find it, even though I knew it was there. So I used one of R.B.'s, they are also quite beautiful. When I got to the part where I pointed my athame at the west wall, I saw a soft blue light in the shape of a man, only slightly smaller, on the wall. It lingered for some time. I am convinced I saw my friend come to visit in his etheric body.
BB, Stella

PS What is the big 'n' by some of the author's names here?

Lunacie
May 3rd, 2006, 11:43 PM
then, also on the Rede
Page 17: Golden Rules.
Here Buckland compares the Rede to statements made in other Religions regarding Ethics.
I quote:

The Islamic notion regards that ONLY against OTHER Islamic people should be acted upon with care. This seems like a small thing, but on the real Buckland makes a huge error. He defies the fact that the Wiccan Rede involves ALL living things (all to which harm could be made).
To Illustrate my comment, he also quotes the Christianity, Judaism and Taoism "Golden Rules", involving respectively "men", "fellowman" and "neighbour". These religions involve human beings in their rule of ethics only. NOT animals and plants. Thus, we could not compare the Rede to any of them; the idea of harm and the balance that should be brought upon ones life into harming and living in harmony with self is DIFFERENT from that of any other religion than it is in Wicca.

I'm not really far in the book, I just hope this list of personal complaints does not grow any further.

Now you might ask, why rant about this author? Well, I'm quite sure you all know Buckland: he's America's best known author probably, for starting the first U.S. Coven and being it's self-claimed "American Leading Authority" (reading on the back of the book, that is).

Am I the first to encounter these problems?
Please don't flame, but let's discuss in peace...

Blessed Be.

I also feel that the Rede is advice, not a law, just my own personal opinion.

I've recently seen that comparison between the ethics of different religions, and I agree with you that they are not comparable. When I saw the quote about Islam I also thought that when taken in context it's most likely referring to fellow Islamics, not to all people.

The Christian religion was started by a Jew who only wanted to expose the corruption in the Jewish religion, not start a whole new religion. The new religion should have been called Paulianity instead of Christianity because it's based more on the writings of Paul than on the messages from Jesus.

Anyway, interesting questions. :)

Ben Gruagach
May 4th, 2006, 10:00 AM
PS What is the big 'n' by some of the author's names here?

Could you reword your question? I can't figure out what you're asking.

stella01904
May 4th, 2006, 10:07 AM
On the Author's Circle page iteslf - that index - some of the authors have a lower-case "n", but it's quite large.
BB, Stella

Ben Gruagach
May 4th, 2006, 04:02 PM
On the Author's Circle page iteslf - that index - some of the authors have a lower-case "n", but it's quite large.
BB, Stella

Those are part of the messageboard software -- they indicate there are "N"ew messages in that particular section since the last time you checked. (It's different for each user though depending what they read last.)

You'll see they are everywhere on MysticWicks, not just in the Authors' Circle section.

stella01904
May 4th, 2006, 08:20 PM
Ah! Thank you!
Stella