To start off, I feel I should point to an article of mine that was published on another site, Humanistic Paganism. It was an article I had written quite some time ago. Hope you enjoy.
Why I Love Ritual by Atheist Witch.
Monday, April 30, 2012
I'd taken an extended hiatus from this blog for a number of reasons, and I thought now would be a good time to start writing again. Nightfall today will mark the start of Beltane, cross-quarter holiday between the Spring Equinox and the Summer Solstice. In some traditions, it marks the beginning of Summer and fertility. Since some of my thoughts (and only some) about life, my philosophy, and craft have come to fruition now after more than a year of practice, I feel comfortable sharing a bit more.
Witchcraft has been defined by some as a "shamanistic" practice, one that straddles the physical world and the world of the spirits. This is notably the underlying philosophy of "hedge witchcraft", but is a common concept among witches of various traditions. The idea of straddling worlds, even without a belief in spirits, is something I've always considered germane. The whole point of witchcraft with a naturalistic viewpoint is to straddle the mind or internal reality and the physical world so as to effect change while not losing your grip on either one. On this path, I've gone back and forth between tradition and innovation, rationality and a personal sense of wonder, between rigidity and irreverence. Striking a balance between those two while maintaining enough fluidity to adapt has been a challenge at times. I've been hesitant to share, believing that until I felt that I had perfectly navigated each and every one of those extremes that perhaps I shouldn't say anything. There was also a part of me that was afraid of cheapening my craft by sharing too much. Intimacy goes hand-in-hand with exclusivity to a certain extent, and while I do intend to maintain a certain level of secrecy (the subject of a future post), I will continue to share my ideas, my truth, my philosophy, any examples that I see from others so as to foster an exchange. The idea is two-fold. Writing about certain aspects of my worldview helps me articulate them and come to an evermore fresher and solid understanding, and having others read and comment upon it might help them along their journey as well.
So once again, Happy Beltane, enjoy the sunshine today if you're lucky to live in a place where there's sunlight right now. I have a number of topics planned, and I look forward to hearing from and seeing you again.