Ooof. Yeah…that happens. Way more than it ought to.
For those not familiar with the concept there are people withing the Pagan Community that have an issue with those who practice Wicca. There are several reasons for this, and the best thing that you can do is be aware and empathetic towards these scenarios.
Let me touch on a few of the most common.
- FluffBunny problem
- The confusion about Wicca
- Anger and Naivete
Let’s talk about these.
The Fluff Bunny issue is something that really irks the happy out of me. I’ve talked about fluffbunny in this post. It’s a hurtful practice that needs to end. And recently it’s become more prevalent and more common than not.
As pagans we need to stick together. It doesn’t matter what branch of paganism you roost on, we are all climbing the same damn tree and we NEED to help one another.
The Confusion about WIcca was touched on in the same post as mentioned above. A lot of people become familiar with the word Wicca and claim it as theirs without understanding what it is and what it means. They use it interchangeable with pagan and with witchcraft. The reason for this is television shows, books, and movies that did a poor job of representation of any of the above. It is because of this that when groups of pagans hear from someone that this person is Wiccan they make an assumption that this person is ‘playing’ at being pagan or doesn’t know what they are talking about.
Anger and Naivete. Okay, a lot of pagans don’t like that Wiccans have rules. Wicca has The Rede and the Three Fold Law. We believe in harming none and curses are a big no-no for us. Because of this pagans like to outcast Wiccans because we are ‘fluffy’ and ‘do-gooder Wiccans’. Also, in some groups, Wiccans think they are better because they have these rules.
Neither is true. Believing in the Rede and the Law makes you Wiccan. It does not make you better, nor does this make you something that should be looked down on.
There is also anger because most people assume that anyone who practices witchcraft is Wiccan…and that bothers non Wiccan practitioners because it stereotypes them. It’s unfair, but it does happen.
Sorry for the rant. It feels necessary.
As for how I deal with it. If we want to change the perception of Wicca and Wiccans in general in both the pagan population and the non pagan population you have to consider yourself an ambassador of the faith. To that end I offer the following advice:
Know your shit. There are a lot of Wiccans out there who don’t know their holidays, the Rede, or the Law and what it means to be Wiccan. Don’t be that. Research, learn, study, and dedicate yourself to it. This matters. It matters a lot. Now, if in the course of these studies you decide that Wicca is not for you that’s okay.
No, seriously…that’s okay. Wicca is not for everyone.
Now, once you’ve got that down pat…now you gotta be honest about who and what you are. Don’t hide. Say it. Mean it. Say you are Wiccan and then continue to be the awesome person that you are.
If you see or hear those nasty comments about ‘wiccans’ start a conversation. TALK TO THEM. Don’t do that thing that humans do so well and turn a blind eye to the situation. Ask them why they feel that way. Empathize, understand, and then tell them about your side of it. Plant that seed in their minds that tells them that Wiccans are okay. They aren’t naive little girls trying to get Justin Bieber to fall in love with them.
And if they don’t listen, wish them well and be on your way. Don’t take it personally. You have the right to call yourself Wiccan and not be ashamed of it. You have the right to be heard and be understood.