Friday, February 1, 2008

Difference between Paganism and Wicca

When discussing the difference between Wicca and Paganism, each person will have a different slant on what the terminology means to them. With that said, for me, there is a vast difference in being Pagan and being Wiccan and there is no difference in being Pagan and being Wiccan. I realize that this is a paradoxical way of thinking and believing. Let me attempt to explain as my mentor did for me a very long time ago.

To be Pagan is to walk on a narrow pathway that leads to no where and every where. Meaning the standards and ethics by which you live by are based upon respect and honor for all things; including all things living and non-living. To breathe in and breathe out the energy that surrounds all things.

To be Wiccan is to walk on the same narrow pathway as a Pagan does but living by man made laws and order in the practice of living. Having studied Wiccan for a multitude of years, the major difference to me is the fellowship the craft offers and the ritualistic nature of worship.

Unfortunately, the current culture has made Wicca into a magic casting, spell binding, almost cult like group. However, every Wiccan that I have had the honor of meeting has been based upon a spiritual pathway that is by its very nature an inward spirituality; rather than a outward showing of spell work. Every circle I have been honored to participate in was a reflective circle that drew the energy from all and returned it back to all creating a divine space of serenity.

The lifestyle that I chose to call Pagan is a quiet walk with nature, in nature, and a part of nature embracing all of its energies. It is a path that requires I do self searching within to deepen my own spirituality. It requires my spirit and soul to be aligned as one so that I may receive and learn from every experience within every moment. The beauty of Paganism, for me, is the ability to live in a space where I can chose to walk with no purpose and just enjoy; or chose to run with a defined purpose and destination.

Paganism, for me, is boiled down simply in this way: There is a Divine entity that has both positive and negative energy. For without negative there can be no positive. If something is considered beautiful then something else in comparison must be ugly. How I chose to perceive any energy is based upon the amount of positive energy flowing through me and around me; keeping the balance to stay on the path.

Bright blessings.


.*. Mandi said...

Well written & percieved. I think people get way too caught up in details.. What's so wrong with just doing what feels right? Keep it up sister.


Jen said...

I Love the way you wrote, I felt as though you were speaking to me. I follow a Pagan path as well although most people are not as understanding and I have been called the devil, :) people like you always make me smile with your words of encouragement so to speak.

Roseblood@GothElegance said...

Your blog is wonderful. Growing up, my family didn't practice Christianity, although they respect all religions as taught in Hinduism. Although my family respected other religions, there were many stigmas about my family's religion from all Judeo-Christian groups and religions. I have never been very religious, but I disliked people approaching me to convert me. Now I consider myself a spiritual person, who believes in Hindu Paganism/mysticism and the philosopy of the Upanishads, yoga and ayurveda. I don't consider myself Wiccan, but I do believe in energy and herbalism. I was not sure what the difference in Paganism and Wicca was, and many people seem to lump them together. The blog post helped a great deal to clarify it. Thank you.

inesdonaldson1 said...

Hi, I come from South America and although we consider ourselves Cristian-Catholics, We practice in real life a form of religious sincrethism,We celebrate Christian and ancient Incan festivities and rituals. So,considering that the Incas were pagan, I've always been curious about the similarities between our practices and yours. For example We celebrate the day of Mother earth or "Pacha Mama" and "Inti Raymi" or the festival of the Sun. Also is very popular when you move to a new House to have it "cleanse" by a native elder and then ask the local catholic priest for a blessing. The native elders not only cleanse houses but also Bussiness,footbal pitches before a match,Houses of parlaments,court rooms,schools,etc. Do you have similar practices or rituals?

Kathy Javens said...

Absolutely!!! This is the clearest, simplest explanation I have seen yet. Thank you. Bright Blessings to one and all!

Demona Clouddancer said...

Wonderful. I was raised Catholic but when one fell ill and no western meds would work. In would come my Mother with the egg. (Anyone whose been cleansed in this way will know what I'm talking about.) When we would move to a new house incense and sage would be used and the priest would come to to bless it. Bad dreams? A circle of salt is a known barrier enforcer. (That's the best way I can think of to describe it.) I love my family we are all blessed in mysticism. But I feel I'm at a crossroads whose signs I can't read. Many Blessings.