Witchcraft: What it is and What it isn’t
You’ve seen “The Craft” five times, you watch “Charmed” every week, you have a black cat that you have most recently renamed “Salem” or “Kittywitch” or something like that, and you dress all in black. You can cast any spell from your three spellbooks and a huge pentagram adorns your neck, your (very creepy looking) book of shadows, and numerous other items in your cache of school supplies. People look at you when you walk down the street, your friends think you are oh-so-cool and your craft name, Moonlight FairyWillow WolfWings, is posted at the top of your web forum in creepy red letters. You are a witch, right?
Wrong. Witchcraft is not a fashion statement. It is nothing like what you see in the movies. It is not a fad. Hollywood has created so many false ideas about witchcraft to draw people in. Teenagers are especially susceptible to these ideas. In an attempt to be rebellious, teens will don the look and the catch-phrases of the neo-goth community. They are drawn in by the glamour of Hollywood and the promise of great power. Teenagers encompass a group in society called “midriffs.” (Anyone who has studied sociology or journalism knows what I am talking about.) Midriffs are at a point in life when they feel the need to grow up and look to others around them to learn how to do it. They will copy what they see: fashions, hairstyles, makeup, slang words and behavior in an attempt to fit in with their age group. This rebellion can have negative effects because it makes young people blind. They will follow from one fad to the next. Style is fleeting. Often, young people will turn to witchcraft for its glamour and seduction. Nothing is more alluring to the inexperienced than absolute power. The first thing that you should know about witchcraft is that it is, first and foremost, a religion. Magick is based entirely on religion and the belief in the unknown. I don’t care who you are or what kind of powers you claim to have; unless you have faith in something, you cannot perform magick.
Secondly, magick is not a fashion statement. True witches are easy to discern from the witch-wannabes. Witches do not wear all black. Witches do not wear huge pentagrams or black lipstick. Witches know that the power of magick is in its secrets. When you lay it threadbare before others it loses all its power and all you have left is a costumed wannabe with nothing to show but the ten pounds of crystal and pewter jewelry around their neck. True witches have learned to cast off their desires to be accepted by the “in” crowd. Real witches are at one with themselves and their surroundings and do not seek to fit in with any clique or to dress in a certain style. True witches look just like everyone else. You will not ever be able to tell a true witch in a crowd of people unless they want you to know that they are there (and I can assure you this will not be very often.)
Witchcraft is not what you see on television. No such thing exists. Many movies, television programs, and books, even some pagan books, lure people in with fake ideas of witchcraft. You will not learn to levitate. Fire and lightning will not shoot from your fingertips. You will never be able to bring down the wrath of the gods or walk on water. These things are fiction – fairy tales. They do not happen. Witchcraft is not instantaneous. Magick takes time to happen and even longer to learn. magick is not something that you can learn in a week or a month or even a year. Witches never stop learning. There is too much to learn for anyone to ever be perfect or know everything. Most people come into the craft because it is a fad and quickly leave because it is too hard or it takes too long. Not anyone can be a witch. To practice and learn the craft, one must be patient, curious and honest with themselves.
If you are interested in being a true witch, there are numerous talents that you will learn. Witchcraft requires a love of nature. If the sight of nature and beauty inspire you or strike awe in you then the craft might be right for you. You will learn how to heal others, speak to plants, animals, trees and spirits, travel on the astral plane, learn to understand yourself and others and divine your dreams and the future. You will learn to better yourself and open your eyes and your mind to new possibilities. Witchcraft is very difficult but if you are one of the few who have the talent, strength and patience for it, it can unlock hidden talents you never knew you had and free your imagination.