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View Full Version : Are the terms wicca and witchcraft mutually exclusive?


Shelly
22-02-2012, 05:54 PM
Can one be a Wiccan and a witch at the same time? They seem pretty different to me, from what I've read.

Occultist
22-02-2012, 06:11 PM
There completly different Shelly.
Wiccan is a religion created by Gerald Gardner its a combination of old pagan traditions and Gods to worship and it has a Rede like the 10 commandments for Pagans.
Witchcraft is a Way of life not a religion its spell weaving and a old way of thinking and doing things or using remedys even that have been lost for many years. Witchcraft is not Worship to a diety it is energy work and castings from an age gone by. We really do not believe in a diety you can if you want there is nothing against it. Just has nothing to do with the Craft itself. We have no Rede either its more intent and purpose.
Its using the energy around you to make a better life for yourself and those around you. Wiccans dont really cast spells they can if they choose but its not required in Wicca so I hope this cleared up any confusion.

Shelly
22-02-2012, 06:13 PM
There completly different Shelly.
Wiccan is a religion created by Gerald Gardner its a combination of old pagan traditions and Gods to worship and it has a Rede like the 10 commandments for Pagans.
Witchcraft is a Way of life not a religion its spell weaving and a old way of thinking and doing things or using remedys even that have been lost for many years. Witchcraft is not Worship to a diety it is energy work and castings from an age gone by. We really do not believe in a diety you can if you want there is nothing against it. Just has nothing to do with the Craft itself. We have no Rede either its more intent and purpose.
Its using the energy around you to make a better life for yourself and those around you. Wiccans dont really cast spells they can if they choose but its not required in Wicca so I hope this cleared up any confusion.

That's what I thought really but do you get witches who are also Wiccans or is Wiccan thought incompatible with witchcraft?

norseman
22-02-2012, 06:42 PM
Witch Craft is the ancient root but wicca is just a new branch. The Craft has a history going back millenia but wicca is only 50 years old. The Craft is an EVOLVED path but wicca is a CREATED one.
Craft is idiosyncratic but wicca is formal ritualistic practices with a hierarchy.

Other threads dealing with this :-
http://www.spiritualforums.com/vb/showthread.php?t=25942

Quintessence
22-02-2012, 08:07 PM
Both the terms "Wicca" and "Witch" have many definitions. Some of these definitions don't overlap much, some of them do. Some use "Wicca" as a synonym for "Witch" and vice versa. There's not a simple answer, I'm afraid. It'll depend on who you ask in the community. Particularly in the early days of the Witchcraft revival, Wicca and Witch were synonyms. You see this often in the writing of early authors and by academics studying the movements. There is a growing trend nowadays, though, to drive a wedge between the two in terms of meaning. I'd consider myself somewhere in the middle of these two extremes.

Shelly
23-02-2012, 12:00 AM
Gardner never even used the term "Wicca". He referred to "The Wica", however.

Animus27
23-02-2012, 03:01 AM
Can one be a Wiccan and a witch at the same time? They seem pretty different to me, from what I've read.
Wicca = a religion/mystery tradition formed out of Western Occultism, Romantic folklore and other remnants of perceived pagan practices (along with a fair dash of 'fakelore'). Wiccans use the word witch to describe themselves much of the time. And many tend to "reclaim" certain types of stereotypical witch behavior of Middle Age polemics against perceived Satanic witches.

Witchcraft is a magical practice with many definitions that vary with the group that uses the term. For instance, in anthropology, witchcraft almost always refers to malevolent magical practices that fall outside of the local communities sanctioned magic-workers.

Many Wiccans won't hesitate to say that they practice witchcraft. But they do not own the term. Thus you can have witches who are Satanic, Christian, Voodoo, or any other cultural background.

In short Wicca = religion that encompasses a practice of witchcraft.

Witchcraft = a vague set of magical techniques that aren't necessarily attached to any dogma or doctrine, as Wicca naturally is.

norseman
23-02-2012, 09:27 AM
Gerald Gardner called his faith, New Witchcraft, which muddies the water even further.

Shelly
23-02-2012, 09:40 AM
Gerald Gardner called his faith, New Witchcraft, which muddies the water even further.

Did he actually call it that? I've never heard that.

LadyMoondancer
02-03-2012, 03:37 AM
I am Wiccan and a Witch who practices Witchcraft. I have had no problem integrating the two.

Uma
02-03-2012, 03:51 AM
I have this book called Witta - it's supposed to be an old Celtic group.

www.amazon.com/Witta-Tradition-Llewellyns-Religion-Magick/dp/0875427324

Nebulous
02-03-2012, 04:26 AM
I know a woman who's a true witch...I'd never call her Wiccan because she doesn't have the same positivity and stuff that most Wiccans seem to have. I mean, most Wiccans I've known are very discreet in their practices and don't really do a whole lot honestly aside from a few rituals here and there and some basic stuff. To me, a TRUE witch of the Old Ways, is one that's boldly willing and able to do a lot more magicks and doesn't go by the rules I've heard Wiccans tend to go by and is far more in touch with the Art, and in the case of this woman she's all the above and not a very good person to boot...but that's just her.

In some ways I follow witchcraft as I would understand it to truly be...but I have a certain code of honor that it takes a lot to make me break. So it's not all bad or anything.

I've read a good deal about Wicca here and there, that's my impression of it - who knows, maybe I haven't read enough, but that's how it seems to me. I use the word "Witch" far more reverently or seriously than I do "Wiccan".

Tanith
02-03-2012, 05:55 PM
I too am Wiccan and a witch. The difference to me is, I was born a witch, but I chose to become Wiccan in my faith. The two are fundamentally different and not all Wiccans are witches and not all witches are Wiccan.

I integrate the two only because I am both, so I use them interchangeably with my workings. I accept the teachings of both and when I do something concerning one I always take into account my actions for the other. Therefore, to ME, they have become one and the same.

However, there can be Christian witches, and that does not make them Wiccan.

I considered myself generally pagan before I chose to identify with Wicca. But before I even converted to paganism I was a witch, and I was born so and raised Baptist, but still a witch, as my mom was a witch, and I inherited some from her, she taught me some, and I learned some on my own.

You can choose to stop being Wiccan by conversion or change in beliefs, but you can't necessarily stop being a witch if you have the Craft innately. You can choose not to use the Craft, of course.


Personally, I feel like a witch should have a creed of some sort to follow because that creed would keep their Craft in check, morally speaking, even if that creed weren't a religious one. A witch with no creed is dangerous indeed.

Occultist
02-03-2012, 08:30 PM
That's what I thought really but do you get witches who are also Wiccans or is Wiccan thought incompatible with witchcraft?
I was raised a witch taught from my mom and her mom and her mom etc,
Because Witchcraft is not a religion its easy for Wiccans to say there witches some maybe even practise the caft. Many dont know how to cast a circle.
Its a touchy subject in the US do to TV shows like Charmed and Secret Circle where for dramatic effect and writers who vertually know nothing of the craft whip up these lil shows for tweens. There mind set is as long as there is a grimoire some chanting a few rhymes some magick spells it will look legit to kids.
I find it rather insulting myself American Wiccan is based more on feeling and some things in TV shows took me and norse alot to figure this out cause American Wiccan has nothing to do with UK wiccan that is based on real wiccan by gerald gardner he wrote the book wiccan.
American wiccan is not wrong but you will find people having a dream waking up and writing there now a wiccan and know vertually nothing that it intails. thats are people who are self proclaimed wiccans some even self proclaim Witches and thats completly impossible without the knowing and blessings and teaching and wisdom..But we support each other just like different branches of the christian church does with there own.

Tanith
05-03-2012, 04:01 PM
I find it rather insulting myself American Wiccan is based more on feeling and some things in TV shows took me and norse alot to figure this out cause American Wiccan has nothing to do with UK wiccan that is based on real wiccan by gerald gardner he wrote the book wiccan.
American wiccan is not wrong but you will find people having a dream waking up and writing there now a wiccan and know vertually nothing that it intails. thats are people who are self proclaimed wiccans some even self proclaim Witches and thats completly impossible without the knowing and blessings and teaching and wisdom..


I just have to say that I agree with you on many points. I am from America yet I have never seen these shows. I was never into things like that to be honest, not from the tv. I was raised knowing how rituals and practices looked to people on the "outside" as my mom and I used to call it. So, I knew when the shows were popular that they had nothing to do with the Craft at all. And it hasn't been until the past couple of years that anyone on the "outside" even knows about my witchcraft; even then it is kept to a very, very small amount of people. I am more open about Wicca however, because to an open mind, Wicca is more easily accepted as a religion, while even other Wiccans may have a bit of uncertainty regarding witchcraft.

My very eclectic Wicca/witchcraft comes a lot from Aleister Crowley and Scott Cunningham, to name the more famous ones. Growing up I had ready access to witchcraft books by Sarah Lyddon Morrison, Janet and Stewart Ferrar and many many others. While I realise these may not be considered "the best" sources on witchcraft, they were what my mom used because there was little available and I've gotten very good use out of them in turn. My mom was a witch, but she wasn't Wiccan. She became Wiccan after I did; before I was born and before I became Wiccan she solely practiced witchcraft.

I feel like I became Wiccan in addition to being a witch when I picked up The Wiccan Year by Judy Ann Nock. From there I had the best of both worlds :)