View Full Version : help our soldiers be heard

October 30th, 2001, 03:22 PM
From: EdthePagan@aol.com
To: MidwestPagans@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [MidwestPagans] ABC Radio Station (WLS-AM Newstalk 890) Knocks
Witches Out of the Air
Date: Tue, 30 Oct 2001 02:33:12 EST

ABC Radio Station (WLS-AM Newstalk 890) Knocks Witches Out of the Air
Distributed by Telepathic Media, Inc.

WLS-AM Newstalk 890 Chicago, a Disney owned radio station, canceled
commercials aired on the Art Bell show for WitchSchool.com, an online
educational site. It should be noted, the Art Bell show is known for
discussing topics such as ghosts, paranormal, and having major Wiccan
personalities as guests. These twice-nightly commercials have been
since October 11th in the timeslot of 12 AM – 4 AM. The commercials
canceled on Monday, October 29, the beginning of the Halloween week
which is
amongst the most sacred of times for Wiccans.

Susan Hallinan, the account executive for WLS-AM radio, informed
WitchSchool.com that the “commercials were canceled because of the
strongly worded emails that had been received, along with the
from 9-11. The management of the radio station decided it was best to
the ads immediately.” Ms. Hallinan did not disclose the nature of
nor the reasoning how a Wiccan commercial site was involved in causing

WLS-AM radio is owned and operated by ABC / Disney, which has made
movies such as Teen Witch, as well as such television shows as Sabrina.
Disney heavily draws from Wiccan and Pagan ideas to create characters
stories for their entertainment empire. It comes as a great surprise
ABC / Disney has chosen to cancel the first real Wiccan ads on
radio. In light of these facts, ABC / Disney is accepting millions of
dollars to promote a witch school academy via the cross promotion of
Harry Potter movie and Coca-Cola.

Ed Hubbard, Director of WitchSchool.com, commented, “It was a great
surprise that a Disney owned station would cancel our ads. We
chose WLS-AM for its tolerance and open-mindedness as well as
policies of being open to people of all cultures. Earning money from
depicting witches and denying media access to Wiccan culture is a
standard that Disney has set up.
While unexpected, it does show how much further Wiccans have to go to
equal treatment in the United States.”

Just in time for Halloween, Disney gives witches a trick instead of a

Contact Information:

Ed Hubbard

Susan Hallinan
Account Executive
WLS-AM Newstalk 890
(312) 984-5286

I AM SHOCKED stunned and totally disgusted that
a reputable co.such as Disney would at such a time
of national spiritual need would cave to ANY FORM
of TERRORISM .as in the gross misuse in judgment at
having pulled the ads for the for witchschool.com the
online wiccan school.How dare Disney take in millions
of dollars promoting a movie for a fictional pagan
based school than refuse to air commercial for r a REAL
LIFE WICCAN SCHOOL. I as a resident of Florida only one hours drive from the popular attraction will do all
in my power to bring to light this discrimination on
the part of your co.How dare you shake such hypocricey
in our faces,as a dear friend to a wtc survivor's sister ,the PROUD MOTHER OF A US MARINE who served almost 3 years at the 8th and I in D.C. and is now stationed over seas ,a chat buddy to several pagan officers serving on your behalf in our military you should be ashamed of your self s.I intend to contact an attorny and the aclu regarding this matter.our pagan soldiers are willing to DIE for your cause.BUT YOU ARE UNWILLING TO WITH STAND A FEW EMAIL,HOE DARE YOU DEGRADE OR SONS AND DAUGHTERS.BUT YOU MIND NOT FILLING YOUR POCKETS WITH MONEY OVER SUCH.


ADDRESS: No central address. Wiccan worship groups, called coven, are essentially autonomous. Many, but far from all, have affiliated with:
Covenant of the Goddess
P.O. Box 1226
Berkeley, CA 94704

OTHER NAMES BY WHICH KNOWN: Witchcraft; Goddess worshipers; Neo-Paganism, Paganism, Norse (or any other ethnic designation) Paganism, Earth Religion, Old Religion, Druidism, Shamanism. Note: All of these groups have some basic similarities and many surface differences of expression with Wicca.

LEADERSHIP: No central leadership. The Covenant of the Goddess annually elects a First Officer and there is a constitutional limit of two consecutive terms, but in practice officers have almost always served for one year only. In 1991, there are two co-First Officers, Phoenix Whitebirch and Brandy Williams.

MEMBERSHIP: Because of the complete autonomy of covens, this cannot be determined. There are an estimated of 50,000 Wiccans in the United States.

HISTORICAL ORIGIN: Wicca is a reconstruction of the Nature worship of tribal Europe, strongly influenced by the living Nature worship traditions of tribal peoples in other parts of the world. The works of such early twentieth century writers as Margaret Murray, Robert Graves and Gerald B. Gardner began the renewal of interest in the Old Religion. After the repeal of the anti-Witchcraft laws in Britain in 1951, Gardner publicly declared himself a Witch and began to gather a group of students and worshipers.

In 1962, two of his students Raymond and Rosemary Buckland (religious names: Lady Rowen and Robat), emigrated to the United States and began teaching Gardnerian Witchcraft here. At the same time, other groups of people became interested through reading books by Gardner and others. Many covens were spontaneously formed, using rituals created from a combination of research and individual inspiration. These self-created covens are today regarded as just as valid as those who can trace a "lineage" of teaching back to England.

In 1975, a very diverse group of covens who wanted to secure the legal protections and benefits of church status formed Covenant of the Goddess (CoG), which is incorporated in the State of California and recognized by the Internal Revenue Service. CoG does not represent all, or even a majority of Wiccans. A coven or an individual need not be affiliated with CoG in order to validly practice the religion. But CoG is the largest single public Wiccan organization, and it is cross-Traditional (i.e. non-denominational).

BASIC BELIEFS: Wiccans worship the sacred as immanent in Nature, often personified as Mother Earth and Father Sky. As polytheists, they may use many other names for Deity. Individuals will often choose Goddesses or Gods from any of the world's pantheons whose stories are particularly inspiring and use those Deities as a focus for personal devotions. Similarly, covens will use particular Deity names as a group focus, and these are often held secret by the groups.

It is very important to be aware that Wiccans do not in any way worship or believe in "Satan," "the Devil," or any similar entities. They point out that "Satan" is a symbol of rebellion against and inversion of the Christian and Jewish traditions. Wiccans do not revile the Bible. They simply regard it as one among many of the world's mythic systems, less applicable than some to their core values, but still deserving just as much respect as any of the others.

Most Wiccan groups also practice magic, by which they mean the direction and use of "psychic energy," those natural but invisible forces which surround all living things. Some members spell the word "magick," to distinguish it from sleight of hand entertainments. Wiccans employ such means as dance, chant, creative visualization and hypnosis to focus and direct psychic energy for the purpose of healing, protecting and aiding members in various endeavors. Such assistance is also extended to non- members upon request.

Many, but not all, Wiccans believe in reincarnation. Some take this as a literal description of what happens to people when they die. For others, it is a symbolic model that helps them deal with the cycles and changes within this life. Neither Reincarnation nor any other literal belief can be used as a test of an individual's validity as a member of the Old Religion.

Most groups have a handwritten collection of rituals and lore, known as a _Book of Shadows._ Part of the religious education of a new member will be to hand copy this book for him or herself. Over they years, as inspiration provides, new material will be added. Normally, access to these books is limited to initiated members of the religion.

PRACTICES AND BEHAVIORAL STANDARDS: The core ethical statement of Wicca, called the "Wiccan Rede" states "an it harm none, do what you will." The rede fulfills the same function as does the "Golden Rule" for Jews and Christians; all other ethical teachings are considered to be elaborations and applications of the Rede. It is a statement of situational ethics, emphasizing at once the individual's responsibility to avoid harm to others and the widest range of personal autonomy in "victimless" activities. Wicca has been described as having a "high-choice" ethic.

Because of the basic Nature orientation of the religion, many Wiccans will regard all living things as Sacred, and to show a special concern for ecological issues. For this reason, individual conscience will lead some to take a pacifist position. Some are vegetarians. Others will feel that, as Nature's Way includes self-defense, they should participate in wars that they conscientiously consider to be just. The religion does not dictate either position, but requires each member to thoughtfully and meditatively examine her or his own conscience and to live by it.

Social forces generally do not yet allow Witches to publicly declare their religious faith without fear of reprisals such as loss of job, child-custody challenges, ridicule, etc. Prejudice against Wiccans is the result of public confusion between Witchcraft and Satanism. Wiccans in the military, especially those who may be posted in countries perceived to be particularly intolerant, will often have their dogtags read "No Religious Preference." Concealment is a traditional Wiccan defense against persecution, so non-denominational dogtags should not contravene a member's request for religious services.

Wiccans celebrate eight festivals, called "Sabbats," as a means of attunement to the seasonal rhythms of Nature. These are January 31 (Called Oimelc, Brigit, or February Eve), March 21 (Ostara or Spring Equinox), April 30 (Beltane or May Eve), June 22 (Midsummer, Litha or Summer Solstice), July 31 (Lunasa or Lammas), September 21 (Harvest, Mabon or Autumn Equinox), October 31 (Samhain, Sowyn or Hallows), and December 21 (Yule or Winter Solstice.) Some groups find meetings within a few days of those dates to be acceptable, others require the precise date. In addition, most groups will meet for worship at each Full Moon, and many will also meet on the New Moon. Meetings for religious study will often be scheduled at any time convenient to the members, and rituals can be scheduled whenever there is a need (i.e. for a healing).

Ritual jewelry is particularly important to many Wiccans. In addition to being a symbol of religious dedication, these talismans are often blessed by the coven back home and felt to carry the coven's protective and healing energy.

ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE: Most Wiccans meet with a coven, a small group of people. Each coven is autonomous. Most are headed by a High Priestess, often with the assistance of a High Priest. Some are headed by a High Priestess or High Priest without a partner, and some regard themselves as a gathering of equals. Covens can be of mixed gender, or all female or male, depending on the preferences of the members. Every initiate is considered to be a priestess a priest. Most covens are small. Thirteen is the traditional maximum number of members, although not an absolute limit. At that size covens form a close bond, so Wiccans in the military are likely to maintain a strong affiliation with their covens back home.

There are many distinct "Traditions" of Wicca, just as there are many denominations within Christianity. The spectrum of Wiccan practice can be described as ranging from "traditional" to "eclectic," with Traditions, covens and individuals fitting anywhere within that range. A typical difference would be that more traditional groups would tend to follow a set liturgy, whereas eclectic groups would emphasize immediate inspiration in worship. These distinctions are not particularly important to the military chaplain, since it is unlikely that enough members of any one Tradition would be at the same base. Worship circles at military facilities are likely to be ad-hoc cross-Traditional groups, working out compromise styles of worship for themselves and constantly adapting them to a changing membership. Therefor, the lack of strict adherence to the patterns of any one Tradition is not an indicator of invalidity.

While many Wiccans meet in a coven, there are also a number of solitairies. These are individuals who choose to practice their faith alone. The may have been initiated in a coven or self initiated. They will join with other Wiccans to celebrate the festivals or to attend the various regional events organized by the larger community.

ROLE OF MINISTERS: Within a traditional coven, the High Priestess, usually assisted by her High Priest, serves both as leader in the rituals and as teacher and counselor for coven members and unaffiliated Pagans. Eclectic covens tend to share leadership more equally.

WORSHIP: Wiccans usually worship in groups. Individuals who are currently not affiliated with a coven, or are away from their home coven, may choose to worship privately or may form ad-hoc groups to mark religious occasions. Non-participating observers are not generally welcome at Wiccan rituals.

Some, but not all, Wiccan covens worship in the nude ("skyclad" as a sign of attunement with Nature. Most, but not all, Wiccan covens bless and share a cup of wine as part of the ritual. Almost all Wiccans use an individual ritual knife (an "athame"_ to focus and direct personal energy. Covens often also have ritual swords to direct the energy of the group. These tools, like all other ritual tools, are highly personal and should never leave the possession of the owner.

Other commonly used ritual tools include a bowl of water, a bowl of salt, a censer with incense, a disk with symbols engraved on it (a "pentacle", statues or artwork representing the Goddess and God, and candles. Most groups will bless and share bread or cookies along with the wine. All of these items are used in individual, private worship as well as in congregate rituals.

DIETARY LAWS OR RESTRICTIONS: None. FUNERAL AND BURIAL REQUIREMENTS: None. Recognition of the death of a member takes place within the coven, apart from the body of the deceased. Ritual tools, materials, or writings found among the effects of the deceased should be returned to their home coven (typically a member will designate a person to whom ritual materials should be sent).

It is desirable for a Wiccan priest or priestess to be present at the time of death, but not strictly necessary. If not possible, the best assistance would be to make the member as comfortable as possible, listen to whatever they have to say, honor any possible requests, and otherwise leave them as quite and private as possible.

MEDICAL TREATMENT: No medical restrictions. Wiccans generally believe in the efficacy of spiritual or psychic healing when done in tandem with standard medical treatment. Therefore, at the request of the patient, other Wiccan personnel should be allowed visiting privileges as though they were immediate family, including access to Intensive Care Units. Most Wiccans believe that healing energy can be sent from great distances, so, if possible, in the case of any serious medical condition, the member's home coven should be notified.

OTHER: With respect to attitude toward military service, Wiccans range from career military personnel to conscientious objectors. Wiccans do not proselytize and generally resent those who do. They believe that no one Path to the Sacred is right for all people, and see their own religious pattern as only one among many that are equally worthy. Wiccans respect all religious that foster honor and compassion in their adherents, and expect the same respect. Members are encouraged to learn about all faiths, and are permitted to attend the services of other religions, should they desire to do so.

GENERAL SOURCE BOOKS: The best general survey of the Wiccan and neo-Pagan movement is:

Adler, Margot. _Drawing_Down_the_Moon_. Boston: Beacon Press, 1986. 595pp

For more specific information about eclectic Wicca, see:

Starhawk. _The_Spiral_Dance_. New York: Harper & Row, 1979.

For more specific information about traditional Wicca, see:

Farrar, Janet, and Stewart Farrar. _Eight_Sabbats_for_Witches_. London: Robert Hale, 1981. 192pp.

_The_Witches'_Way_. London: Robert Hale, 1984. 394pp.


Pagan Military Newsletter
c/o Terri Morgan, Editor
829 Lynnhaven Parkway 114-198
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Because of the autonomy of each coven and the wide variance of specific ritual practices, the best contact person would be the High Priestess or other leader of the member's home coven.

As with many things which find their way to the net, this is posted without permission. Most of the typos are mine. I cannot take responsibility for any part of the quoted text, as I did not write it and did not edit it to conform to my beliefs. I also included as much information about the publication as I had available... remember, the text is several years old, and the addresses for CoG and for the military newletter may both be out of date.

this is one of the best treatments of Wicca which I have seen outside of Wiccan press.



PLEASE ALL EMAIL THESE people thay cant get away with this
this is one of the largest groups on line let them know our pagan
soldiers count

November 13th, 2001, 11:22 PM

November 14th, 2001, 01:42 AM
we're being Heard alright we're scraming for entertanment here its boring.......

July 24th, 2003, 12:47 PM
I know this is an old thread, but I'm wondering if there is any new news on this subject.

July 24th, 2003, 01:51 PM
I know this is an old thread, but I'm wondering if there is any new news on this subject.

not that im aware of and im a correllian rev
through the school...ill let you know

Phoenix Blue
July 24th, 2003, 02:46 PM
What does this have to do with our troops, exactly? I don't know many folks in the service who listen to Art Bell (or who would confess listening to him, at any rate). :)

July 25th, 2003, 09:15 PM
What does this have to do with our troops, exactly? I don't know many folks in the service who listen to Art Bell (or who would confess listening to him, at any rate). :)
for the life of me i dont know why i equated it to our troops
other than our pagan troops fight for our freedoms therefor we have as much right to be heard .as in the adds.

this was a radio station funded by disney i believe
that had removed the paid adds for witch school after a few nasty emails

September 26th, 2003, 09:56 PM
Wow reading the Military Document, I'm impressed.

They have a good understanding of us, glad to see the Military is open-minded!

brighid's child
January 23rd, 2006, 08:17 AM
I have a question. In the article they made some connection in the controversy over the adds, and 9-11? HUH?

But on a different note. I am a former Pagan soldier and the current wife of one. For the most part the military is one of the most tolerent places for "low density religious groups". There is a culture that seriously discourages discrimination of any sort. Though in truth...majority rules. Christian Chaplains get radio airtime, and pray at all of our events. There is a general assumption by people that you are Christian. But all things considered, at least we have solid protections if something does happen.