There are many people throughout the world that practice Wicca. Wicca is the largest neopagan religion practiced in the world. Those who practice Wicca have a great respect for the Earth and for the great Goddess and her partner, the horned God. They have a belief system which includes the Wiccan Rede, which tells them they may not harm people, including themselves, except for situations of self harm. Most Wiccans are sole practitioners but some practice within a group of individuals called a coven or e grove. Within a coven, practitioners of Wicca share information and do some celebrations and rituals on their own.
Wiccans have nothing to do with Satanism, contrary to the beliefs of some Christians. They have a strong belief system that includes nature and the Goddess and God. They simply don’t believe in the Christian god or in Jesus.
Wicca is a decentralized form of religion so that those who practice Wicca often come up with their own rituals, practices and beliefs over time. The practices of a practitioner or coven are kept secret from others and are unknown to the general populace. This is all in contrast to the very centralized religions of Christianity, which has the Vatican and other central aspects of the church to answer to.
The Origins of Wicca
The origins of Wicca may in fact date to ancient times but the Wicca we practice today has its origins in the teachings of practitioners dating from the mid 1800s. Margaret Murray wrote on some of the practices of Wicca and the Western Central portion of Europe in the early to mid 1990s. Gerald Gardner belonged to a Wicca coven in 1939 and wrote a book about Wicca in 1949 in the form of a novel. Many of the symbols, rituals and elements of Wiccan magic were introduced and used by other covens. There are people that exclusively follow Gardnerian Wicca and those that practice other forms of Wicca.
It is important to recognize that Wicca is a form of religion as well as a form of witchcraft. There are strong beliefs in the Goddess as being supreme and being connected to the Horned God. Some of this dates back to ancient Celtic beliefs. The practitioners of Wicca are also highly connected to nature and revere the elements of nature. It is related to the Essenes, who were early Christians and those who practice the Wiccan ways learn about the ancient spiritual teachings of witches who have come before them, even those who came centuries before them.
The practitioners of Wicca believe in the use of natural remedies including herbs and roots to heal people and to make them feel better. They also do spells that are based on nature and on natural things. They pray to the Goddess for help in solving earthly matters.
Wicca is considered a duotheistic religion, because they worship both the Goddess and the Horned God. The Goddess is also referred to as the Triple Goddess. They are believed to be two facets of a larger Godhead. Some practitioners of Wicca, however, believe in only one God or Goddess, while others believe in no God or Goddess at all. All, however, practice rituals and spells, many of which have originated in ancient times.