Out of curiosity, I joined a Wiccan forum just so I could take a peek. Well, I knew they were a bit kooky, but you should read this stuff that they believe in. They seriously believe they can do magic, divination, and healing. I originally thought they were just nature lovers that liked to chant to the moon or something.
I want so bad to join up and tell them they are all out of their gourds, but I hate trolls so I'm not about to become one. Still, many of these people are ex-christians. I don't get how you can decide one god is the wrong one and then pick up a whole new belief system that involved a bunch new of deities and not question that. Some of them even admit they believe in elves and faeries.
What do you think makes a person believe for a minute that magic is real?
I have enjoyed learning about Wicca in this thread. I have a close family member who is into it but I did not want to ask her about it because I was afraid I would not be able to keep a straight face as she explained it to me.
I posted a similar thread in r/atheism recently here. Some of the folks there pointed me to some helpful resources, such as the Skeptic's Dictionary, which has some good wicca-related entries. My sense is that a lot of these folks are disaffected Christians (not necessarily ex-Christians), but what's most striking is the lack of any sort of structure to the belief system. It's kind of an "anything goes" approach to spirituality. But perhaps this lack of structure is in itself an attraction.
Wiccans and New Agers can easily be as batshit insane as Creationists. Leaving a religion certainly does not necessitate being more rational. I think I might have a slight, very very slight amount of respect for Creationists over New Agers because Creationism is making a testable scientific claim, which is that when one looks at the earth for clues of how it was formed that it should match the bible. Of course, that claim has been utterly disproven, but it's way more clear and concise than New Age bullshit.
What's the name of the forum? I have no problem whatsoever going over there and giving them a piece of my mind.
Hee hee, you made me think of the South Park goth kids, which were so hilarious.
That's another point that I forgot to mention.
Ialso forgot to add that external magic isn't really Wiccan. What 'actual' Wiccans will practice is more like an internal 'magic'. Meaning that they may do a spell to be happier. The thought is then that they will be more positive and that may rub off on those they com into contact with. Simply due to a placebo effect/frame of mind/power of suggestion. But anyone who claims to do love spells, spells on another or curses is not actually Wiccan. More often than not, it's someone who is like "Cool! I want to be a witch!" and really has no understanding for what Wicca actually is.It really is mostly about nature.
I will say that although I don't believe some of the thing my wife believes in, she is still much more rational than your average theist. She is not afraid of science one bit and actually embraces new findings.
um....not all wiccans are like that at all. Like all beliefs, you shouldn't judge the whole religion based on those that are extremist or in you're words, kooky.
My fiance is wiccan, and I see more logic in the way that she practices her beleifs then that of a fundamentalist christian.
Wicca IS about nature.
the "Magic" that you speak of isnt what you think...it mostly has to do with the power of sugestion. "healing" is real. there are herbal remedies that are scientifically proven to be effective.
as far as the deities that they beleive in, they usually take figures of ancient pagan gods..such as Greek or Egyptian in my fiance's case, and only use them as symbolism of what their God and Goddess are like.
wicca is considered a neo-pagan belief, which means it's a newer take on ancient pagan traditions and rituals. Most Wiccans reject other gods in favor of the god and goddess, because these pagan beliefs pre-date other modern religions. While they DO practice differently, it all has ancient roots.
Traditions and rituals that most wiccans practice have to do with the earth, and the minerals that make it up. well, that and spirit, but we'll let that one go because it could be a lot worse.
You mentioned the moon in you're post. The moon's phases represent the life cycle of the goddess. unlike modern belief systems, there takes a man AND a women to create everything in Wicca.
I agree with the morality part. the three fold law is something that jesus should have talked about. lol
I also agree about transferring energies to a point...i think that if someone is susceptible to the power of suggestion enough, it could have a placebo effect.
Like some people when I fell away from my 'faith' (its arguable that I ever really had eny but lets ignore that for now.) I looked into other religions. Wicca was one of them. I was (and am) one of those 'weirdo gothy gorls' or however youd like to describe me and a lot of other kids my age who were like that were into wicca so it wasn't hard to find a coven.
At first I really liked it. I LOVE nature and the woods. I liked the female empowerment and how it didn't shy from sex. But I NEVER took it literally. The spells were more of an advanced meditation for me and the gods and godesses merely neat symbols. I dropped it when I realized some of these people believed in fairies. Like serious. Fairies.
I know I didn't really answered your question but I wanted to share my bit. :)