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An Open Letter to Young Seekers

An Open Letter to Young Seekers

Merry Meet!

If you are under 18, you will probably already have noticed that young folks generally elicit different reactions from adults in the Pagan community than what you’d like. You’ve probably had a great deal of difficulty finding someone to answer your questions honestly, or a respected teacher who is willing or able to teach you what you really want to know.

Following is part of the general information we make available for young seekers. If you have any questions, we will do our best to answer what we can, but please understand if sometimes the answer is “you really need to ask your parents.” (If your parents support your interest and would like more information about Wicca, please have them contact us. Or bring them to a Laughing Cat meeting, where they can ask questions and meet members of the local Pagan community.)

We hope you can understand that without knowing your parents, and hearing directly from them that they support your interest in Wicca, an ethical teacher or mentor cannot work with you. Most groups and private teachers don’t accept seekers under 16 or 18. (Some even require you to be 21 — or even older!)

Ethics, Morals and Other Rules

Pagans live by a different set of rules than “mere mortals.” Seriously though, we do have our own ethics, morals and family values. There are many lists of these guidelines available. In fact, just about anyone who’s ever written a book about magic or Witchcraft has given a list of “rules to live by.” That’s great, the more we have, the more we have to choose from because, let’s face it, we don’t all agree on everything. We have our sects just like any other religion. Some of us feel better with very specific, detailed rules while others chafe under such a system. Most of us, regardless of other differences, cite the “Witches Rede” as our guiding principle. I guess that’s a good starting place:

“Three words the Wiccan Rede fulfill; ‘an it harm none, do what ye will.”

I believe that is an abbreviated version of Doreen Valiente’s lovely little poem. She also mentions the “Law of Three”: “… unless in thy self-defense it be, ever mind the Rule of Three.” Yes, a very good place to start, indeed. But I have a few other rules that I try to live by.

The Mysteries of the Ogham

(Note from Daven:  This is an excellent article on one of the basics of Celtic Life.  The Ogham.  It is the basis of most of their poetry, literature, and their knowledge.  Look it over and look over that which we have on the Druids, and I think you will start to agree with me.)

The Mysteries of the Ogham-Part One

By Kenneth R. White

The script known as Ogham (oh-m) may have been a product of the Celtic peoples coming into contact with cultures who had already developed a written language; however, it is more than likely that the script developed independently. We know that the Druids used the Greek alphabet for private matters, committing none of their lore to writing. Most of our present day knowledge of Ogham comes to us from the Book of Ballimote, which was written in about the fourteenth century. Like the other texts used to teach medieval students, its sources are far older and lost to us. Ogham is to a long and cumbersome a system to use for writing large texts. The practical use of ogham seems to have been limited to ceremonial or short inscriptions. The physical evidence suggests that Ogham was used for short inscriptions and in fact there are many such examples carved along the edges of stones. Most of these Ogham stones are found in Ireland and Wales though there are a few of them located in Scotland and England. Since Ogham is not practical for writing by hand there must have been some other use. This is where we begin our journey into Ogham as a spiritual or magical system. The Ogham letters themselves were said to have been created by the God Ogma, after whom they are named, From a seventh century Irish text, Auraicept na n’Eces, we are told:

The Doctrine of Feline Sedentation

How would Christians deal with “The cat sat on the mat” if it appeared in the Bible?

The Liberal theologians would point out that such a passage did not of course mean that the cat literally sat on the mat. Also cat and mat had different meanings in those days from today, and anyway, the text should he interpreted according to the customs and practices of the period.

This would lead to an immediate backlash from the Evangelicals. They would make an essential condition of faith that a real, physical, living cat, being a domestic pet of the Felix Domesticus species, and having a whiskered head and furry body, four legs and a tail, did physically place its whole body on a floor covering, designed for that purpose, and which is on the floor, but not of the floor. The expression on the floor, but not of the floor would be explained in a leaflet.

WING OF NEWT

Jehana Silverwing

“Will you stop calling me ‘Sow’, all right? That’s a female pig. The name is Sam. Sam, as in SAM”.

He whispers that lowly to the woman who has just announced his talk. He clears his throat, and steps forward to address the students, leaving the well-meaning facilitator behind. Someone always ends up slaughtering his name, he ruefully reminds himself.

He’s honored to be here, on Religious Freedoms day. This is the day each school brings in representative theo/alogians from all the different religions in the district. Each gets their hour in the sun. It also happens to be October, so there is only one thing on people’s minds.

“My name is Sam Hain. Rhymes with ‘a-THAME’. That’s the gizmo Witches use to slice open apples to show that there are very few really regular pentagons inside. Oh, the pentagon. People are always confusing that with that building down there in Washington — what is it? Yes, the Pentacle. You know, where they’ve got that demon trapped.

A Christian Speaks on the Faith and Path of Wicca

(Note from Daven: This is one of those essays that permeate the Internet.  It’s an interesting look from a Christian perspective on Wicca.  I’m hoping that the author of this will come forward and take credit for it, for this is one of the best articles on Wicca that I have seen from a Christian.  I’ll tell you this, if Christianity was ALL as tolerant as this piece is, Daven might still be a Christian today.  I have no address to contact the author at, so I have no clue as to the copyright status of this document, but if the author comes forward and asks me to, I’ll remove this essay if requested. THIS IS NOT MY ARTICLE.)

A Christian Speaks on the Faith and Path of Wicca

by James Clement Taylor

I am a Christian and not a Wiccan. A Christian is one who has been baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and who has made a personal, free-will decision to commit himself and all his or her life to our Lord and God and Savior, Jesus Christ. Both of these things are true of me. I am a member of St. Mary’s Eastern Orthodox Church, Calhan, Colorado. In this paper, I am not speaking as agent for any church, but I am, entirely on my own responsibility, speaking the truth in love, as we Christians are supposed to do.

Happy 2000 from Dalai Lama

(Note from Daven:  Okay, I admit it, I’m addicted to email.  I LOVE getting it and reading it.  Sometimes I get chain emails too.  And in those cases, I usually delete it as soon as I know what it is.  However, this showed up in my Inbox right around the start of the New Millenium (and I know that it doesn’t really start until 2001) and it caught my eye.  I copied it and sent it along to a lot of other people, and I got some good responses to it, despite the fact that it is a Chain-email.  And thus SPAM, was born.  LOL)

Happy 2000 from Dalai Lama

INSTRUCTIONS FOR LIFE:

  1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
  2. When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.
  3. Follow the three Rs: Respect for self Respect for others and Responsibility for all your actions.
  4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.
  5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.
  6. Don’t let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
  7. When you realise you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.

NeoPagans and Star Trek

NeoPagans and Star Trek; A Comparison Study

Gene Rodenberry went to his grave telling stories that, although they supposedly happened light years away, were relevant to our every day lives. From the beginning, he claimed that the characters and races on Star Trek were parallels for people here on Earth. Little did anyone know that the characters were actually taking on traits of Neo-Pagan sects across the country! Was Gene Pagan? Who knows, but sit back and enjoy this little trip, where no Pagan has gone before….

Wiccans – The United Federation of Planets (The Wicca-Bes and most traditionalists)
The Federation means well. They let just about everybody into their little social club, so long as they agree to play nice. They don’t talk about rules much, but keep referring to one Prime Directive that all other laws are based on. That said, they frequently violate that rule when the need suits them. Often heard speaking in various UK accents, even though they’re not from the islands (Et tu, Jean-Luc?)

Asatru – Klingons
Obsessed with honor and combat. Have no qualms with eating meat and eat it with obvious relish. Insist they did everything first (“But Hamlet is so much better in the original Klingon.”) And who wants Klingon opera, when you can have Wagner’s Die Neibelung?

THE WICCAN REDE

(Note from Daven:  Okay, everyone else seems to have a version of the Wiccan Rede on their site, so I figure I need to have one too.  Here it is, and a better one I challenge anyone to find.  LOL  Take special care to look at the last line.  That is the true Rede, the one everyone speaks of when talking about the Rede.  Keep it in mind, and you probably won’t go too far wrong.)

THE WICCAN REDE

Lady Gwen Thompson

From the Samhain 1995 Issue of Witch’s Brew

Teens and the Victim Attitude

(Note from Daven: Please note, once again, this is not my article.  I include it because it is one of the best articles of this type I have ever seen or read, and it is important for it to stay on the Internet.  So, don’t credit me with this, even though it is on my site.)

by Astraea Crowe 
also printed at http://www.geocities.com/astraeaaradia/home.html

If you are a teenager (or any age, for that matter), chances are, you are worried about opening up to your parents about your interests in paganism or magick. How the heck do you even begin to explain to them why you are interested? There is a good chance that you will be leery about telling your friends as well. I was worried about my friends suddenly changing their minds about me being cool and “normal.” A lot of people deal with that situation.

I decided to begin with my “rant” about pagan oppression, so if you want a little advice on how to speak to your parents about your spirituality, you’ll have to either read through or scroll down.