What is Wicca?
What is Wicca?
by Taniquetil and Astralaya

Wicca is a Neo-Pagan, earth based, mystery religion. There is special meaning
in each and every one of these words. The Latin roots of the word “Wicca”
mean "wise ones," or wisdom. The Germanic and Saxon roots mean to bend,
change
or alter. The infinitive verb form of the root means "to wicker." So, the name
of the religion implies creating change in our lives, and in the universe, by
wise people.

Today there are many traditions borrowing from Native American shamanism,
Hindu, (and others) with many incorporating Qabbalistic practices, Chakras
etc., into their belief systems. The common defining theme is the Earth based
mystery aspect.

Wiccans see the Divine Reality as at once a unity of masculine and feminine
entities that define a transcendental Divinity and also as polar masculine and
feminine aspects that define all things and all phenomena and can be
experienced immanently. In other words, the God/Goddess is both outside us and
within us, and is an energy force that connects all things. We see ourselves
as a necessary part of the God/Goddess…and so we see ourselves, in part, as
Gods and Goddesses.

The practice of seeing the Earth as the Goddess manifest and all its creatures
as part of the God/Goddess is the theme that drives the term "Earth based."
We call it a mystery religion because we have learned to see our Gods in the
Lunar Cycles and in the Wheel of Life that are the natural cycles of the year.
To better understand difficult concepts, and to fix them in our minds and
hearts, and for the phenomena to have personal meaning, we have developed the
many myths and legends that we tell defining the behavior of our God/Goddess
in prose and poetry.

Wiccans believe in reincarnation and see death as a necessary transformation
for the spirit to be renewed and resurrected into a new life where the spirit
continues to develop and learn. Many believe the spirit learns more with each
incarnation until earth reincarnations are no longer required, and the spirit
then resides in a higher level of existence.

Wiccans practice witchcraft (magic) as a form of focused prayer. Since all
things are connected we believe we can channel energy and thought patterns
to
effect change in the material world to get things we need in our secular
lives, to improve the state of the universe, and to experience the Divine
Reality. We do this by altering our state of consciousness so our Higher
Self,
which operates at the Cosmic level, can manipulate thought into the material
change we consciously seek. The key to learning witchcraft is to learn to
communicate (via various techniques) with the Higher Self (also referred to as
Cosmic Consciousness or Spiritual Consciousness).