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Men And Women In Magick

Forums ► Misc Topics ► Men And Women In Magick

Men And Women In Magick
Post # 1
Hi this is my first time posting in the forum so sorry if its not in the right place

This isnt so much about the battle of the sexes as the way men and women seem to approach magick in a very different way.

I'm not saying ALL men or ALL women. But I've Described as Male and Solar and Witchcfaft as Female and Lunar. (with crossover points) The idea I had was the custom that the Moon is a 'she' and the Sun is a 'he' I bet you it was the men who erected the menhirs and probably women who did potions and stuff.

Men have a tendancy to disassemble things, pull them appart and rebuild to see how it works. Logical. Women seem to be more inclined to make themselves a part of the matter, and work from the inside out. Empathy I guess. They both have their merrits, and both equally have their downsides

Men seem to need formula and ceremony and structure. Whereas women less so. Am I imagining this? Ceremony and ritual and structure seem to something that men do. Men form make "clubs". From workings men clubs to trade unions to the masonic even wicca and all "structured" in some way.

Now please note. What I dont want it people running in here and saying "Im a woman and I do this" or "Im a guy and I do that" and know there are exceptions, but generally speaking, there does seem to be a difference.

Of course we are also talking in huge generalisations, and I think these generalisations have done magic a disservice. Wicca is often seen from the outside as female-oriented,

when the truth is it does seek for a system of duality between male and female, where the positives in each sex are recognised. This false impression is leading to a struggle to find decent male witches, at least in my experience

I dont think one is better than the other BTW, its just an observation, has anyone else noticed it?
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 2
I believe that the masculine and feminine approaches to Magick and ritual etc. ARE different in many ways. This is called polarity. While many people describe polarity as a matter of opposites, light versus dark, good versus bad, and so on, I tend to see it as being complementary. light compliments dark and vise versa. This is why in the old Family Trads a male is always initiated by a female and a female by a male.
In the Circle, the male-female polarities unite to make Magick stronger. In otherwords, the two halves make a whole.
Soltaires have found, tho, that while it is nice to have a partner, it isn't absolutely essential for making strong Magick. This is because each person has aspects of the other polarity in him/her and so can become either polarity in working Magick.

In some ancient societies The Moon was considered to be male and the Sun, female. Does this mean their male-female polarity was reversed? Just a thought.
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 3
While Wicca is supposed to be about God/dess, that is, God and Goddess equally, there does seem to be an emphasis on Goddess.

One reason for this is after being deluged for a lifetime with images of God Who is The Old Man with the Long White Beard many Wiccans find it hard to make contact with the God. That image is so ingrained in us (I say us as I am a former Wiccan) that we can't get past it to feel as comfortable addressing the God as we do the Goddess.

A second reason, at least for women, is that a lot of the women who come to Wicca were abused either mentally, physically, or sexually both as children and as adults, by the men in their lives and as Wiccans have difficulty connecting with the God.
As a Priestess of Wicca, I heard the same story over and over again. It was already familiar to me for it was my own.

After all these years, I still have difficulty with my relationship with the God. I'm still working on it.
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 4
I don't know if Ceremonial Magic etc are predominantly practiced by men, but that's simply because I've little experience of that side of things. But yes, there can really be no argument against the very common observation that Pagan Witchcraft (Wicca included) is practiced by many, many more women that men. But would that be explicable purely in terms of the approaches to magic involved, or might other factors be equally or more significant?

Looking at Wicca (I'm deliberately ignoring your placement of Wicca within the more 'structured' paths as that could be a whole different, but equally fun, debate), it's a bit surprising I suppose, that while much of it works with forms of dynamic equilibrium between female and male

female Wiccans outnumber male ones to an even greater degree than women outnumber men in Paganism as a whole. This doesn't necessarily seem to have been the case back when Wicca was emerging but it's certainly the case now. Another factor here, in addition to approaches to magic (which covers a broad range in itself), might simply lie in attitudes to leadership.

Such authority as there is within Wicca is traditionally exercised by women, and even within 'balanced' covens the point of balance is still going to be much further towards the female side than is the case in the wider society. That might be a 'non-magical' factor in why Wicca attracts som many more women than men.

Possibly related, Wicca also seems to include a larger proportion of 'out' Gay/Lesbian/Bi. or otherwise 'Queer', folk than the Pagan community as a whole, let alone the wider society as a whole. So the preponderance of women in Wicca might be part of a more general tendency for some groups of people who are still marginalised and/or discriminated against by social conventions to feel comfortable within it.
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 5
I really enjoyed reading that And you are right in so many ways. I think you make a really good point

Almost any generalisation on grounds of sex is going to face a barrage of counter-examples. And sex is always going to be complicated by assumptions about gender, which is a much more nebulous and less useful concept.

I guess I've a very serious problem here . While sex is probably the most significant characteristic of personal identity within humanity, the magical practitioners I know well enough to provide useful evidence for this don't fall into anything that much ressembles conventional gender stereotypes,

and group work - even where it's explicitly built around female/male dynamics - very much reflects that. So in theory, I can't see any reason why Wicca and other forms of Pagan Witchcraft should not attract roughly equal numbers of men and women. But in the world as it is, this is so clearly not the case that no amount of sophistry can fudge it. So there's obviously something wrong with reality
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 6
Regarding Wicca, I suppose I was being presumptious.
The fact that it now attracts more women is, I feel, possibly more down to how it is now "sold" please excuse the word I appreciate that can be a little offensive, I intend none It is sold as a female centric faith, not really that surprising then that women garvitate to it.

About the Wicca thing, I'm going to have to be the exception here... most of the other covens I have come into contact with have many more women than men, but sometimes its the opposite

For as long as it has been going, there have always been more men than women, and while we have always had at least one or two blokes knocking about who are looking for initiation, we struggle to attract female members.
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
By: / Adept
Post # 7
As far as why Wicca and other Neo-Pagan religions attract more women than men, my belief is because Wicca/Neo-Paganism are some of the only acknowledged religions that is woman-centric and women-inclusive and women-revearing.

As stated by other posters, the Judeo-Christian religions are written to benefit males both in theory and practice. Therefore, i would assume that many men enjoy that priviledge and are inherently more satisfied with their standing in thier manistream religious affiliations. God looks like they do, God speaks like they do, God grants priviledge to them, and their leaders share their same gender.

Some women, on the other hand (and really we're talking about a minority of women) are not content with only a male face of God, are not content with taking a backseat in religious clergy, leadership, and ritual, and are not content with downright misogenous scripture and holy texts. Therefore, sensing the innate inaccuracy of this situation, the imbalance, they follow their heart and look for something else, a religion that honors women and who honors a diety that mirrors their femaleness.

Of course many men are also dissatisfied with patriarchial monotheism too, but my guess is that the dissastified women outnumber the dissatisfied men.
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 8
At the moment, we are better balanced with equal numbers of each. But we are approaching a period of change, and I will soon find myself hiving off and taking two of the priests with me xD kidding lol

I would much prefer to have equal numbers of each, but for the time being it looks like we will have a shortage of women members...

not sure why it seems to be the other way round for us when I hear other covens complain about the lack of men wanting to join, I guess we just had to be awkward, lol
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 9
Interesting thoughts

I actually do believe that there is a difference. For one thing, there do appear to be more women than men in the pagan 'scene'. I think this can be put down to culture as women cannot 'rise' within the structures of the major religions, but due to historical precedent, they can 'rise' within the pagan culture.

By historical precedent (and no, I don't mean the mythical 'peaceful matriarchy lost in the mists of time), I mean starting way back with such archetypal characters as Circe and Medea, (not to mention the Pythia) were roles usually assigned to women.

I also think that cultural influences aside, there are many differences between men and women which could play a role in the 'type' of magic or ritual different people prefer. (Note: this is not hard and fast as both men and women have different distributions of things like hormones and other admixtures of physiology - it takes two different kinds of DNA to make a human outside the lab. - male and female).
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Re: Men And Women In Magick
Post # 10
Interesting thread! I have often pondered the differences in the male and female approach to the craft. As a rule, they do approach things in a completely different manner. As a man, I tend to have an almost "scientific" approach, for lack of a better word. The only time I do ritualized workings is when I can see how the ritual is going to help my concentration, my will, or my visualization. Also if I'm working with spirits or deities, I will use ritual. Many rituals almost make me feel foolish or I can't see logically how it will help my outcome.
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