You don't have to be around the magical community long before hearing such aphorisms as: "wiccans don't worship Satan" and "wiccans believe the devil is an invention of the Christian church." These people are unfortunately ignoring much of the history of the Horned God. During the inquisition and European witch hunts, the church equated a number of pagan horned gods and spirits to their villainous devil in order to convert pagans to Christianity. Among these were: Pan, Dionysus, the Celtic Cernunnos, Janicot, and Krampus. While the others are primarily spirits of creation and fertility, Krampus is to a greater extent a dark god associated with mischief and sorcery. In spite of how he has been portrayed, he guides and protects his followers, and was said to be a chief god in pagan witch cults and preside over full moon esbats. A papal bull during the inquisition decreed him to be the devil, and he is often alluded to in the Malleus Maleficarum or The Witches Hammer. Historically, December 5th or Krampusnacht was devoted to him, and people to this day speak of him prowling around and scaring kids on this night. Contemporary wiccans will likely refute any working with Krampus or relate to him by a secret name told only to initiates of their tradition. Outside of Wicca, Krampus is featured under various names in family tradition witchcraft as a watcher and protector against those who might do the family harm.
In parts of Germany, Austria, and the Alps region, he accompanies St. Nick on Christmas giving beatings to bad children with a stick or carries them away in a basket, never to be seen again. He is rumored to be a son of Hel, the Norse goddess of the underworld, and he stays there with her during much of the warmer part of the year. He is depicted as black hairy satyr-like creature that stands upright on 2 cloven feet and has a long pointed tongue that hangs out. Today, there are festivals throughout western Europe and the United States that celebrate Krampus as a cultural icon much like Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny.
As we see, claims that witches work with a dark horned god are not unfounded, but the origins of the Horned God Krampus are pagan, not Christian.
Re: Krampus The Witches Devil By: Lark Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 2 Dec 12, 2015
You confusing Witchcraft with Wicca.
It is entirely correct to say that Wiccans do not worship Satan. Nor is our Horned God drawn from the concept of Satan, rather it's the other way around. The Horned God of Traditional Wicca is not by any means taken from the same Germanic roots as Krampus. Remember that Wicca is a new religion, not more than 80 years old. And the Horned God that Wiccans work with is one who sees over the cycle of life, death, and resurrection.
Krampus is not a God that Wiccans worship by that name nor any other. His origins are unclear but it seems that he might have been drawn from Germanic Paganism and then turned into a devil-figure by Medieval Christians to scare children into being good.
As for non-Wiccan Witches, there is again a lot of misinformation here. Witchcraft is a secular magical practice. A Witch can be of any religion or no religion at all. Most Witches that I know are not even Pagan and certainly don't follow a "dark God".
It sounds as though whoever wrote this piece you cut and pasted here (without credit I might add) is drawing their information primarily from Christian sources and/or the works of Margaret Murray (long discredited)
Krampus may have been a deity in the Germanic, Pagan pantheon, later demonized by the Christian Church. But that makes him in no way a deity followed by either Wiccans or Witches. To refer to him as the "Witches' Devil" is simply not correct.
I did not copy-paste this from anywhere, I wrote it to spark a discussion about the Horned Gods like Krampus and his role in paganism paganism. I do not claim to know your Wiccan tradition better than you do Lark, nor that all witch cults are equivalent.
I would like to hear how you know for sure that the Horned God you work with is not another form of Krampus, who may have been believed by European pagans as seeing over cycle of life, death, and resurrection as you say before being demonized by the church. Gerald Gardner claimed to have been initiated into an ancient witch cult before publishing his first books on witchcraft and founding Wicca. It seems to me that it is possible the Horned God he established in his tradition under a secret name could in fact be drawn from Krampus as ancient pagans viewed him.
Re: Krampus The Witches Devil By: Lark Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 4 Dec 12, 2015
Gerald Gardner, as you say, claimed to have been initiated into an ancient Witch cult. While it is true that he was initiated into a coven, that coven's roots go back no further than around 1900. There is no credible evidence that Wicca, or for that matter modern Witchcraft, have any direct connection to ancient Pagan practices. I would recommend "Triumph of the Moon" by Ronald Hutton for an academic treatment of the subject.
In developing the concept of the God of the Wica, Gardner drew heavily on the works of Margaret Murray, who had written about the Witch Trials in Europe and decided that the legends of Witches meeting on coven celebrations with the Devil were really carry overs from ancient Pagan practices. The fact of the matter is that Murray's works have long been discredited when it was found that she had manufactured many of the so-called source material she used in her book "God of the Witches". While a belief in her writings was popular in the early days of Wicca you will not find very many Wiccans who believe what she wrote was true anymore.
In Traditional Wicca we work with a specific Horned God whose name is not shared with non-initiates. But I can tell you that the God of Traditional Wicca is not drawn from the Germanic pantheon and thus has nothing to do with Krampus who was specifically from that pantheon.
Just because a deity is portrayed as a Horned God does not mean that all Horned Gods are the same. So Pan is not Cernunnos, nor is Cernunnos the same as Krampus, etc. I suppose that there is no reason that someone who is Wiccan might choose to work with Krampus. But that is very, very different from saying that all Wiccans worship Krampus and leagues away from saying that that means Wiccans worship a Satan-like being.
Re: Krampus The Witches Devil By: WhiteRav3n / Knowledgeable
Post # 5 Dec 12, 2015
Traditional Witchcraft is not associated with any religion, however, it does have the common factor of heavy influence on nature and they usually believe in animism. This is where the male and female aspects of creation come in and you get a lot of reference to the phallus and the female genitalia.
It depends on what culture the witch is from or studies under that will color their practice. Italian and Slavic witches generally have heavy Christian influence and they'll quickly cross themselves repeatively and maybe spit a few times LOL if you dare bring up Satan, a devil, or anything horned in their presence.
NEO pagan witchcraft (not traditional) is more likely to have a focus on god and goddess. The horn is symbolic of the phallus by the way. It's not really to be expected that he have bull horns or antlers like most new representations. Pan doesn't use those tiny sharp points on his head with the ladies.