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Thread: How long did you 'study' for before starting to practice?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Nottingham, England
    I'd been interested in theology for a few years anyway, but when I actively became pagan, I spent a week or so getting my bearings; then learned and practiced simultaneously.
    Avatar is by Alphonse Mucha.

    Religious blog

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    In Fairyland
    I don't remember, but it was too long. Better to start practicing meditation, grounding and centering, visualization, and rituals right away. You can't mess 'em up, and they're fundamental.
    Om Namah Shivaya.

    "Im finding seeking the sacred, well, that its rather like falling in love, the harder you seek it, the less likely it is to happen." - Brightshores

    "When your consciousness is directed outward, mind and world arise. When it is directed inward, it realizes its own Source and returns home into the Unmanifested." ~ Eckhart Tolle

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    i started actively studying about a week ago, i got a book and i have a few books from a friend being mailed to me soon (free i might add which is the best lol) and i've been reading this forum (there's so much info here i love this place) and all over the web, taking it all with a grain of salt and trying to form an opinion and figure out waht i beleive. i'm just kind of going with what feels right and not over thinking it like i do with other things.
    I bought a white candle and a couple wooden bowls the other day and i want to start just meditation right now and i want to work with crystals (i want to make a bracelet of some crystasls). i want to do some simple stuff right now, no major magic(k) or anything. so that's where i am. lol

    it's cool to hear others stories about this kind of thing so keep em coming ^_^

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    NJ, USA
    Quote Originally Posted by AutumnSage
    How long did you 'study' for before starting to practice?
    Why did you put the word study in quotes? It makes it seem like you don't take study seriously. Like you don't think we study at all. That can't be a correct interpretation.

    To answer the question: I didn't study before I started to practice. I studied and practiced simultaneously: step by step, getting further along the way by learning the theory and putting it to the test immediately. My studies and practice continue to this day, and probably will continue untill I die.
    Xentor, your friendly-neighbourhood Checkerist
    Contact me | The Dialogues on Checkerism

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    the Netherlands
    Quote Originally Posted by Solya View Post
    I studied for two years solid, so from eleven to thirteen. I began to practice with runes around the age of thirteen, but I don't recall doing any other rituals. I was probably fifteen or sixteen when I first did a full-fledged ritual. I still prefer study to practice, though, and most of these past eight years have been dedicated to reading everything possible.
    Quoting myself for a moment...

    I just recalled that I already tentatively followed Isis and Ra around when I was about 8 years old... I only studied the myths and history related to them, but it felt like they were with me already. They're the deities I still feel very strongly about, despite the fact that I currently also follow other ones. And when it comes to studying religion and spiritual practices... I started that when I was very little, by asking questions about Christianity and Jesus... so, in a sense, I've always been studying. It just didn't turn Pagan until I was about eleven years old.
    Can you touch the root that feeds us?
    Can you hear the words that I say?
    Can you feel the music move you?
    Can you feel alive today?

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Welcome to MW.

    People say you have to study Wicca for a year and a day before being initiated, other people don't follow that at all.

    I'm not Wiccan, but I was at one point. I studied it for a year and a day before practicing. Before and during that time though, I'd probably studied 3 years or so.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Nottingham (Robin Hood County), UK!
    I "studied" for probably 4-6 months (maybe even longer, I'm not sure now) before I actually got stuck into the practical side of things, and the reason for leaving it so long was I'd "studied" too much. Yep, that's right, I'd read that much and tried to take so much information in on what to actually do in ritual, spell casting, how to read the Tarot, what tools I should use, which Pantheon I should follow, etc. etc. etc. that I'd managed to work myself into a frenzy worrying what if I do something "wrong," which book should I actually trust to be right, what if I try and cast Circle and I get the words wrong, or worse still, forget the words all together. It really did get stupid and all because I'd read too many books, each one advising me to do things differently from the other, and in the end I just didn't know what to think, who to trust, and most importantly of all, what to do.
    So, where did I go from here I hear you ask? In the end I just went back to basics i.e. ditched the books, chilled out and went with my intuition and what felt right to ME, not what some book said I should do. Don't get me wrong, when I did get stuck in and did my first ritual of course I had to think back (and often refer) to some of the books I'd read as they were my only source of information at the time, I just didn't let myself get caught up in the whole, I have to do it like this or otherwise it won't work syndrome. I just picked the bits out that I liked and added my own twists to things, and as time went on and I had more practice things just kind of came more naturally to me and I built the confidence up to do my own thing without worrying about how others did it.

    Sorry, this has now become a right old ramble lol. What I'm trying to basically say is, don't think you can't get stuck into the practical side of things because you've read too much and you're worried about doing things "wrong." There is no right or wrong way (unless you're following a certain tradition where there's set rituals, etc). Just ditch the studying, book reading, etc. for awhile and get stuck into your practice and have some fun :D

    Good Luck with your chosen path!

    PS: To Xentor - The reason why I put study in quotes is because I truly beleive that one can't fully learn their path through books i.e. study, and the only way to learn it properly is through practice i.e. to actually get stuck in and experience things for oneself as words cannot explain what one feels, especially when dealing with magick and the like.
    Last edited by ~Belladonna~; September 2nd, 2008 at 08:01 PM.
    ~Free Your Mind~

    )O( Blessings One & All )O(

    ***Knowledge really is Power***- Francis Bacon (1561 - 1626)

    ***Magic, madam, is like wine and, if you are not used to it, it will make you drunk*** - Susanna Clarke The Ladies of Grace Adieu

    ***Magick Works in Mysterious Ways*** - Me

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Here. Now.
    The first book on Wicca that I picked up (well, the first one I read all the way through - the very first one I picked up I chucked across the room 20 pages in) made it very clear that, unlike a lot of things we're taught today, the way to witchcraft was not to read and study for years before practicing, but rather to dive right in and start practicing meditation, visualization, and simple spells. So I'd say I studied for, hmmm...4 days before I started practicing.

    Of course, one of the great things about the process is that I never stop studying. I'll be studying all my life, which will lead me to new practices, or new approaches to old practices, whcih will lead me to new things I want to study. It's an unvicious circle!
    If you're lucky you'll find something that reflects you,
    helps you feel your life protects you,
    cradles you and connects you to everything.
    Dar Williams, "The Hudson"

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    I never stop studying. I think the best way to study is also to practice. You can't expect to understand everything from books. Try things... buy a book on meditation, and follow it to see if it works for you. It's also good to study under someone you know who follows the tradition you are studying. They will have some "insider tricks" for you, as well as advice.

    The shouldn't be a standard length of time that a person should study before practice. Take you time and begin when you feel that you should. For instance, you can set up an altar right away according to your book's layout OR you can read about altars for a while, and start to collect things for it when you have a sense of how you should do it.

    Always stay open to knowledge, and continue to learn throughout your whole life. You can't study for 3 weeks, assume you know everything you need to know about your path, and then practice it with rigidity and never change. That isn't how spirituality works... it's about growth and knowledge.


  10. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Philadelphia-ish, PA
    When I started practicing, there weren't an awful lot of books available. So I practiced immediately, read and studied afterwards.

    I am the religious right. Just not the religion most people expect.

    Contrary to popular belief, Hello Kitty is not my totem animal.

    A wayfarer should not walk unarmed, But have his weapons to hand: He knows not when he may need a spear, Or what menace meet on the road. ~~Havamal #38
    Become the change you wish to see in the world.
    The Cellar

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