Why Pagan Teachers Get Gray
"Oh, I want to be a Witch! You said you'd teach me!"
I looked at her. Young, fresh faced, eager, excited, waiting for her first lesson
"I did, didn't I?"
"First lesson," I tell her, "get yourself a notebook."
"Got one right here!" She pulled it from beneath the stack of Wicca 101
books she'd brought to show me what she'd been reading. A big fat one.
Good, She'd need every page, and more.
" On the first page, write the date, and what ever name you're using."
She scribbled, quickly.
Oct. 7, 1999, Shiny Silver Ravenmoon.
"Now, write a title. It can be something like 'My Journey Through Life.'
Again, she scribbled.
"This is your book. By the time you fill it up you'll have a pretty good idea
about what you actually believe. You'll know where you are, so to speak. In it
you'll put all your dreams, your ideas, your thoughts, your beliefs..."
"Gee, thats an awful lot of writing...I thought you'd, like, show me how to do a
"All in good time," I say, "Magick is just a part of the Path you're learning.
There are other things just as important that you need to learn first, like
She looked blank.
"Didn't you read any of those books you've got there?"
"Uh, well, I read a little bit.."
" There's meditation, visualization, grounding and shielding, among others."
"That sounds like a lot of work."
"It is. And that's only the beginning. Just take it in baby steps. One at a time
and you'll do fine."
But back to the notebook, 'On the second page write, 'What I believe about
the..." then write a list of topics, like this."
I handed her an outline.
'What I believe about the...
10. Cone of power
"It doesn't have to b this list. Pick your own topics. This is just to give you an
idea of how to begin. Start with ten items, Devote at least a page in your
notebook to each subject. Do one at a time, and and write down what you
believe to be true about it. Take your time, as much as you need, for each
topic, even if it takes a month or more..."
"But that'll take forever!" She almost wailed.
"Patience is the most important lesson you'll learn as a practicing Witch."
"But I want to learn how to do spells!"
"And you will. These are the things you need to start with...now, where were
Oh yes, Topic pages. Alright. once you've finished writing what you believe
about Goddess, entitle the next page 'Why', then write down why you believe
these things about Goddess to be true."
"Well, tell me one thing about Goddess you believe."
"Uh, Goddess is the feminine part of the Devine?" She made it a question,
instead of a statement.
OK, now why do you believe that?"
"High Priestess Lady Diana HooYah said so in her book."
"But I didn't ask what High Priestess Lady Diana HooYah believes. Why do you
"That's what this exercise is all about, to help you discover not only what you
believe, but why you believe it. Witches don't believe something just because
someone else says so. We decide our own truths.
Do your research. Here are the addys of some pretty good websites on the
Goddess and this book is an excellent reference work...you don't have a
copy? You can borrow mine. I need it back when you're done, tho.
Next time, we'll work on some visualization techniques and maybe start you
on some basic energy manipulation."
"But when will we do a spell?"
"When you're ready, dear...til next time, then. Blessed Be."
I watched her leave, a small sad smile on my face, knowing she probably
wouldn't be back.
She wanted Instant Witchcraft, and unlike instant coffee, it doesn't exist. Real
Witchcraft is hard work, lifelong study and self-analysis, no matter what flavor
you claim as your own. Some lessons are tedious, some can bring extreme
mental anguish. There's no quick Ten Easy Lessons version.
Incidentally, I never did get my book back. (sigh) I lose more books that way.