People who know me, follow my blogs or my writing on Facebook have undoubtedly realized that I am not a glass-half-full person. In addition, where my faith is concerned I am militantly outspoken. Two things in particular limit my optimism and drive my anger. The first is the grotesque misrepresentation of the Craft by those who claim to be committed to its principles. The second is the arrogance of some in this country who would insist that refusal to submit to the tenets of their religion is in and of itself persecution. These two things are not as wholly unrelated as they might seem. To the extent that the Witchcraft is made to look one dimensional or foolish by devotees, those that purport to follow the only “true and legitimate faith” in this country, indeed the faith on which its principles are supposedly based, are not seen to be engaged in persecution when they ridicule, scapegoat and demonize us.
I am not fond of overly glamorized, stylized or sexualized pictures of Witches. We aren't all traditionally beautiful, young, thin, nymphs who are big of tit and light of heart. We don't all wear Victoria Secret push up bras and dresses split up the side to the hip, particularly when doing serious work at midnight during Dark of the Moon and outdoors in eight degree Colorado weather.
This image is spectacularly odious to women who have become Crone. When through ignorance or vanity the Queen of The Witches is robbed of the abiding fearlessness of age, wisdom and serenity which She represents to so many, She becomes a cheap, slick and sleazy caricature of what She means to those of us who follow Her in seriousness and reverence.
This distortion is a discrediting of our belief that She is with all women at all times, inside, just ahead or next to us. That there is a great and spiritually transcendent beauty, beyond the synthetic charm valued by a world of sham, in aging and growing closer to Her who is a constant from the moment She guides our soul into our tiny bodies, kissing our lips with breath at birth, until the day She leads us across the bridge to the Summerland. In the late afternoon of our lives She calls all women in love and genuine communion. Some in vanity will turn their back on Her, running and hiding behind the modern magic potions of youth, the plastic surgeon and Botox. Others will take Her hand and begin the most exciting and momentous journey they have ever known. Those who will not have Her will live without Her, but seldom well. Those who choose to walk their path with Her will know a growing consciousness and contentment till the end and beyond. This is what the Great Crone has taught me.
When I see flummery and marzipan offered to the world by way of an example of the Craft of the Wise, a substitute for the commitment, work and challenge of following the Goddess, I am saddened. When I see my faith peddled to other women like perfume or body waxing as an easy path to sex, love, beauty and personal happiness, I grow angry because I know that we forfeit the credibility to say never again to the Burning Times. We grow vulnerable to those who would use us to explain away the problems of a world they have corrupted.
We lose the right and cede the moral high ground to say to those who would control us and hide the Scared Feminine in the dark once again, “Shut up and walk your own path. If you need a crowd to walk with you, if you require the unqualified compliance of those around you, you may be on the wrong path.”
We must be strong and seen to be strong in order to assert that faith cannot be legislated, mandated or force fed by any pseudo oligarchy, organized religion or mob. It is a purely intrinsic and subjective value. To the extent that it is given the force of law or made the norm by peer pressure born of group think it will breed an equal resentment and rage seething under the skin of the collective consciousness and growing with each successive generation.
We must be clearly understood when we say, “The moral of the story is if you are engaged in shoving your religion down the throats of others, sleep with one eye open.”