Why magick and not magic? The answer is quite simple...magic is what Copperfield and other illusionists perform. Magick is true, not an illusion. I will never forget the intense surge of power I felt vibrating in my body the first time I practiced magick, and I get that same feeling every time.
I believe it is important for beginners to realize that their are many more paths one can follow. By learning about different ones, it can not only enrich your knowledge, but even guide you towards a path that's best suited for you. It is common for people use the terms Witchcraft and Wicca interchangeably. Whether they are different or just a way of describing the same thing depends on which Witch you ask. Either way you look at it, there is more than one path or tradition. The following are just a few descriptions of some of the most common.
Founded in England during the 1960's by Alexander Sanders, self-proclaimed "King of the Witches". An offshoot of Gardnerian, Alexandrian covens focus strongly upon training, emphasizing on areas more generally associated with ceremonial magic, such as Qabalah, Angelic Magic and Enochian. The typical Alexandrian coven has a hierarchical structure, and generally meets on weekly, or at least on Full Moons, New Moons and Sabbats. Rituals are usually done skyclad.
Most Alexandrian covens will allow non-initiates to attend circles, usually as a "neophyte," who undergoes basic training in circle craft prior to being accepted for the 1st degree initiation. Alexandrian Wicca uses essentially the same tools and rituals as Gardnerian Wicca, though in some cases, the tools are used differently, and the rituals have been adapted. Another frequent change is to be found in the names of deities and guardians of the Quarters. In some ways these differences are merely cosmetic, but in others, there are fundamental differences in philosophy. Over the last 30 years, the two traditions have moved slowly towards each other, and the differences which marked lines of demarcation are slowly fading away.
The Celtic path is really many traditions under the general heading of "Celtic." It encompasses Druidism, Celtic Shamanism, Celtic Wicca or Witta, the Grail Religion, and Celtic Christianity or Culdees. Each path is unique and stand alone meld together with another and still be part of the Celtic tradition. It is primarily derived from the ancient pre Christian Celtic religion of Gaul and the British Isles.
As it is practiced today, most of the Celtic paths are part of the Neo-Pagan revival, focusing on Nature and healing with group and individual rituals that honor the Ancient Shining Ones and the Earth. Most are very eclectic, and hold to the Celtic myths, divinities, magic and rituals. Celtic paths are some of the more popular traditions.
Uses a great deal of Ceremonial Magick in practices. Mostly derived from the works of Aleister Crowley. Detailed rituals with a flavor of Egyptian magick are popular, as Qabalistic ritual forms.
This is the most feminist Craft Tradition. Most Dianic covens worship the Goddess exclusively (Diana and Artemis are the most common manifestations) and most today are women only. Rituals are eclectic; some are derived from Gardnerian and Faery traditions, while others have been created anew. Emphasis is on rediscovering and reclaiming female power and divinity, consciousness-raising, and combining politics with spirituality. The Dianic Craft included two distinct branches:
The first Dianic coven in the U.S. was formed in the late '60s by Margan McFarland and Mark Roberts, in Dallas, Texas. This branch gives primacy to the Goddess in its theology, but honors the Horned God as Her beloved Consort. Covens include both women and men. This branch is sometimes called 'Old Dianic,' and there are still covens of this tradition specially in Texas. Other coven, similar in theology but not directly descended from the McFarland/Roberts line are sprinkled around the country.
The other branch, Feminist Dianic Witchcraft, focuses exclusively on the Goddess and consists of women-only covens, often with a strong lesbian presence. These tend to be loosely structured and non-hierarchical, using consensus decision making and simple, creative, experimental ritual. They are politically feminist groups, usually very supportive, personal and emotionally intimate. The major network is Re-Formed Congregation of the Goddess. Z Budapest founded the Susan B. Anthony Coven in 1971, declaring Dianic Witchcraft to be "Wimmin's Religion". The Women's Spirituality Forum was Founded by Z Budapest in 1986, and is dedicated to bringing Goddess consciousness to the mainstream of feminist consciousness through lectures and, retreats, classes, cable TV shows, and rituals in the effort to achieve spiritual and social liberation.
Draconic Wicca is the utilization of the powers of the dragons. There are as many dragons as there are people. They are as varied as humans are also. We work with these dragons to achieve the results that we seek. In doing so, we have to deal with the unique personalities of each type of dragon. The dragons have no real hierarchy other than age, except for the case of The Dragon. The Dragon is the combined powers of the God and the Goddess. The Dragon is invoked or evoked during Sabbats and in times when great magick is needed (not when you can not find your keys). Invoking means to call into you the power of the dragon that you name i.e. a fire dragon. You ask that this dragon assume himself/herself into your spiritual body. To evoke means to call a dragon to you, to join you in your magickal workings.
Refers to groups and individuals who do not fully adhere to one specific form of Paganism. They choose to incorporate some beliefs, practices, rituals etc, of a few, or many paths to form a unique one that suits their spiritual needs. Gypsy magic tends to fall into this category.
Victor and Cora Anderson are the original teachers of the Feri Tradition. Victor is universally recognized as the Grand Master of his order of Feri. He was initiated in 1926 by a priestess from Africa. He is also one of the last genuine Kahuna. His book of poetry, Thorns of the Blood Rose
Suggested e-books:Mike Nichols - Eight Sabbats Of Witchcraft
Michael Harrison - The Roots Of Witchcraft
George Lyman Kittredge - Notes On Witchcraft
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