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Thread: A Few Questions About the Craft

  1. #1
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    Question A Few Questions About the Craft

    I've been studying Wicca for years, but there are a few things I haven't quite figured out yet and I'm sure some of you can help answer my questions.

    Do all Wiccans believe in reincarnation? Or is it okay for one to believe that you only have one life and you can pass on to the Summerland afterwards?

    What exactly is supposed to happen in the Summerland? Do Wiccans believe that everybody goes there like Christians believe everybody goes to Heaven or Hell, whether or not you are part of that religion?

    Scientists believe in the Big Bang theory and that humans have evolved. Christians believe the man God created us and the earth. What do Wiccans believe created us and the world?

    I read in a book by Gary Cantrell that when Wiccans call upon a pantheon god or goddess, they believe the god or goddess is a facet of the Lord or Lady, not that the pantheon actually exists, rather it's just an idea. If so, is the calling of these gods and goddesses necessary? Could you simply call upon the God and Goddess or does calling on a pantheon make the ritual stronger?

    Also, in the same book by Gary Cantrell, I read that Wiccans believe in The All or The One, and from that comes The God and Goddess, and from that comes the pantheon gods and goddesses. Is this what all Wiccans believe, that there is a main force, and then the God and Goddess? Also, is the belief in the God and Goddess real like that of the Christians' belief in their God, or are they only symbols like the pantheon gods and goddesses?

    Yeah, sorry that's a lot of questions and hopefully I worded everything so that you can understand what I'm trying to ask. Thanks for taking the time to read. All help is appreciated.

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    Most Wiccans do believe in reincarnation, it's a pretty important of Wiccan cosmology.

    Beliefs on what happens in the Summerlands varies, also not all Wiccans believe in that particular concept. It's thought of generally as a stopping of point between lives on earth. and yeah most people who believe in the Summerlands believe that everyone goes there.

    Most Wiccans I know tend to subcribe to the bing bang theory.

    using a pantheon generally makes the ritual stronger, honestly not all Wiccans are soft polytheists and this is in generally a very complex topic, one that has been discussed at length in the Wicca sub-forum, try looking around in there for more info.
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    Wicca has no official creed. Certain traditions might, but as a whole it doesn't.

    I believe in neither reincarnation nor the Summerlands, nor any other version of an after life. Of all the Wiccans I know or have known, only 2 believe in an after life. I'm aware of a Wiccan creation myth, but its only that--a myth. A story. I've never met a Wiccan who didn't subscribe to a scientific theory of the origins of life and the universe.

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    Since Wicca is an orthopraxic religion the beliefs of the practitioners are much less important than their practices. Statements like "All Wiccans believe..." are pretty useless and most likely inaccurate.
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    Not all Wiccans believe in reincarnation, but many (at least eclectic ones) do.

    Nobody can restrict you in what you believe as an individual. I'm suggesting that you don't worry about being able to conform to anothers belief. Just do what feels right, listen to your heart and head.

    What the Summerland is like depends on the individual...we can only speculate really. I personally believe that there is a period of rest before moving onto our next form, similar to the Summerlands, but I'm not Wiccan so...

    How the Universe began is, again, a speculation, and depends on the individual...most neo-pagans, to my knowledge, understand the concept of evolution, and do not deny science. Our ideas on why it is, and how it came to be (in a spiritual sense) are varied...some people believe in a combination of creation and evolution, so it's not like there has to be a distinct line between one and the other. There are Christians that recognize evolution as well.

    Calling on the Gods, in the way you explained, is "soft polytheism", which is more common in eclectic Wicca, while "hard polytheism" (recognizing the deities as individual, distinct beings) is in traditional Wiccan practice, but can also be seen in eclectic practice. If YOU believe that the Gods are merely faces, it's up to you to decide on what feels right. Although I'm not suggesting to you that you call random Gods into your circles or to "use" in spells. Soft polytheists will call often "call" on different Gods to align themselves with different energies of the greater Goddess/God.

    What or who the Goddess/God is also depends on the individual. Seeing everything as being Divine and part of the greater whole (the One) is pantheism, which is nothing like Christian view of deity. Goddess/God are female/male forces of the Divine. In my personal belief feminine/masculine cannot be separated and there are elements of each in nearly everything, however some things contain more of one than the other. To an extent I would say that it is part perception and human experience, but we can obviously see feminine/masculine aspects in other forces in nature. Somebody might explain Goddess as passive and God as aggressive. When we attach say, a human like woman to the moon, that is a personification or "symbol". When we think of the Goddess as looking like ourselves, we are, in some ways, personifying Her. That does not make Her just a symbol. But again, it is entirely up to your own belief. Polarities and energies are complicated and interesting to think about. We see through human eyes.

    Most of "eclectic Wicca" (what you're most likely talking about) is basically adapted to fit the individuals needs, and there's very few things where we can say "Wiccans believe this"...and even for those things, there are different perspectives on them. If you talk to 100 different Wiccans you'll probably receive 100 different responses, if you really dug into it. While it is good to examine others beliefs, you must search yourself for answers.
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    Last edited by ~Nixie; February 28th, 2009 at 12:53 AM.

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    Hello Holy Diver. Welcome to MW.

    You've had some really insightful answers here, but you seem to be addressing your question to Wiccans. We can move your thread to the path specific forum for Wicca if you would like and see what kind of answers you can receive over there. (Linkie in my signature below)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lunacie View Post
    Hello Holy Diver. Welcome to MW.

    You've had some really insightful answers here, but you seem to be addressing your question to Wiccans. We can move your thread to the path specific forum for Wicca if you would like and see what kind of answers you can receive over there. (Linkie in my signature below)
    Yeah thanks.

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    Thanks, this was very helpful. I wasn't asking to conform to beliefs though. One reason I've considered the path of Wicca for so many years is because it does seem very adaptable for everybody, and I couldn't make myself believe the religion I was brought up on. I tried to actually, but I realized I couldn't live a life I didn't believe in. Anyway, I know a lot of things about Wicca and different types of Witchcraft, etc., but there were a lot of things I didn't know and when I realized that I wanted to find out what the majority do believe.

    I already do have most of my beliefs figured out. I was just wandering what others believed too, particularly about using pantheon gods and goddesses because I don't believe they are real. I think they are just aspects of the Lord and Lady to represent them, and I did want to make sure I wasn't the only one who believed in that cuz calling upon gods and goddesses is a serious thing. Ya know, if every person swore up and down they were real and I didn't believe that, I guess I would have felt I was wrong and that I shouldn't mess with calling them.

    But anyway, thank you again for your post.




    Quote Originally Posted by ~Nixie View Post
    Not all Wiccans believe in reincarnation, but many (at least eclectic ones) do.

    Nobody can restrict you in what you believe as an individual. I'm suggesting that you don't worry about being able to conform to anothers belief. Just do what feels right, listen to your heart and head.

    What the Summerland is like depends on the individual...we can only speculate really. I personally believe that there is a period of rest before moving onto our next form, similar to the Summerlands, but I'm not Wiccan so...

    How the Universe began is, again, a speculation, and depends on the individual...most neo-pagans, to my knowledge, understand the concept of evolution, and do not deny science. Our ideas on why it is, and how it came to be (in a spiritual sense) are varied...some people believe in a combination of creation and evolution, so it's not like there has to be a distinct line between one and the other. There are Christians that recognize evolution as well.

    Calling on the Gods, in the way you explained, is "soft polytheism", which is more common in eclectic Wicca, while "hard polytheism" (recognizing the deities as individual, distinct beings) is in traditional Wiccan practice, but can also be seen in eclectic practice. If YOU believe that the Gods are merely faces, it's up to you to decide on what feels right. Although I'm not suggesting to you that you call random Gods into your circles or to "use" in spells. Soft polytheists will call often "call" on different Gods to align themselves with different energies of the greater Goddess/God.

    What or who the Goddess/God is also depends on the individual. Seeing everything as being Divine and part of the greater whole (the One) is pantheism, which is nothing like Christian view of deity. Goddess/God are female/male forces of the Divine. In my personal belief feminine/masculine cannot be separated and there are elements of each in nearly everything, however some things contain more of one than the other. To an extent I would say that it is part perception and human experience, but we can obviously see feminine/masculine aspects in other forces in nature. Somebody might explain Goddess as passive and God as aggressive. When we attach say, a human like woman to the moon, that is a personification or "symbol". When we think of the Goddess as looking like ourselves, we are, in some ways, personifying Her. That does not make Her just a symbol. But again, it is entirely up to your own belief. Polarities and energies are complicated and interesting to think about. We see through human eyes.

    Most of "eclectic Wicca" (what you're most likely talking about) is basically adapted to fit the individuals needs, and there's very few things where we can say "Wiccans believe this"...and even for those things, there are different perspectives on them. If you talk to 100 different Wiccans you'll probably receive 100 different responses, if you really dug into it. While it is good to examine others beliefs, you must search yourself for answers.
    Blessings.
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    Nice to meet you HolyDiver777! I don't really have anything to add, just a warm welcome home.

    Thanks for bringing up the questions also...I love to think...but i am too new to add to this one really.

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