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Author Topic: Are rituals neccessary?  (Read 12560 times)

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LynzyMiller

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Are rituals neccessary?
« on: November 07, 2010, 02:21:37 PM »

So... i've been putting in alot of study. I've studied ALOT of different religions, and I know that I will continue to study and learn. I'm one of those people, "professional Student for life"
The more I research into Wicca, the more I feel that its just not quite right for me. There are many aspects that I can relate to... But some larger ones that just don't quite jive.
I believe in the divine. Can't really say "diety/dieties" Because that makes it seem to personified. to me, there is a great frikkin' power out there that is amazing. hehe.
But i don't feel like i need to put a face to it in order to feel closer. (this is where my wicca connection comes in) I feel this awesome power, or atleast a little bit of it... in all things, and experiences.
the thing that is really making me question wicca are the rituals. I don't feel like i have to invoke the goddess in order to feel closer to her. my rituals pretty much involve taking a walk on the beach on a full moon and really taking it in. or sitting in the woods and actually appreciating what is there. watching a sunset. talking to my unborn child. so basically, my ritual is to see the divine in all things, on a day to day basis.
I can appreciate the symbolism of the altar and the tools, and the properties of different crystals and herbs, and the meaning of colors, the elements, etc.
and from my experiences in other religions, i can see the neccessity of rituals in a group setting.
a side note: I am wondering if you can do witchcraft without calling on the god and goddess. I mean, is witchcraft that specific that you must follow exact steps? If i don't draw a circle will all the effort go out he window?

Thanks for listening everyone,
I really just need a soundin board.
Lynzy
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Hjolmaer

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2010, 02:33:17 PM »

Well, most of your post I won't comment on directly, as that is your personal path.  Good on you for figuring out what, exactly, you believe though.

As to ritual: Rituals aren't "necessary" so much as they are "canon".  They are used to give structure where people feel it is necessary, or useful.  Many religions make use of ritual, just in slightly different forms.  What you describe as your rituals are just fine, as a solitary.  Even a group could take a great deal out of them.  A personal ritual can be as elaborate and scripted or as loose and free-form as you like.  And there's nothing wrong with that.

As for whether or not you can practice witchcraft without invoking the gods, absolutely.  Ceremonial Magic does precisely that.  Traditional Witchcraft, I believe, does also.  Though on that note I could be wrong.  Haven't delved too deeply into it yet.

Besides, witchcraft is in the doing.  It's only got religious/spiritual connotations if you append them to it.
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edens garden

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2010, 05:55:45 PM »

Lynzy, you're my kind of witch!

Honestly, ritual can be as much or as little as you want to make it. It can be a huge undertaking for 40+ people with clever rhyming couplets and dancing, or it can be taking a walk in the woods and discussing your day/hopes.fears/etc. with the God and Goddess. I am very much the latter. It seems to me, from my experience, that a lot of people come to Wicca looking for answers, and leave it having found them, but they weren't necessarily the answers they thought they would find.
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ejfinch

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2010, 07:09:12 PM »

Traditional Witchcraft, I believe, does also.  Though on that note I could be wrong.  Haven't delved too deeply into it yet.


Yes, H, you are correct about Traditional Crafters. Many do not acknowledge deity or religion at all.
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Aurest

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2010, 04:06:01 PM »

I know some Wiccans who would double over at the thought of not having a structured ritual at all the appointed times.  I know others who only have them when they feel it is necessary.  Both groups are happy with their religious and spiritual lives.  In the end, it's really just what you feel is right.  Granted, there is a point where one could question if what is being practiced is still "Wicca", but it doesn't really matter what specific religion you're following.  All that matters is that you're discovering what's best for you, and building your own spiritual path.

My rituals don't always involve the traditional ceremonies.  When I go out in the morning and lie down on the grass, listen to the quiet air, and stare up at the sky, I count that as a ritual.  It may not be traditional, but it's what works for me. 
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C_A

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2010, 04:46:38 PM »

Ritual, at "all the appointed times", is part and parcel of BEING Wiccan.  It is the time when the RELIGION of Wicca is practiced....

Yes, yes, I know...."But C_A!  I practice my religion EVERY DAY!".

Yeah.  Me too.  But if you're going to practice your religion like SOME Christians, ("C-E", "Christmas and Easter"), WHAT on Earth separates you from THEM?  Spelling?
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LynzyMiller

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2010, 06:23:30 PM »


Yeah.  Me too.  But if you're going to practice your religion like SOME Christians, ("C-E", "Christmas and Easter"), WHAT on Earth separates you from THEM?  Spelling?

I think what you're saying is if I'm celebrating the usual christian holidays then i'm no different than Christians? If that's not what you meant, maybe you could clarify.
I do understand what you are saying as to ritual being part and parcel of BEING Wiccan.
I do not believe that I am Wiccan, there are many aspects that I can appreciate. But i'm beginning to realize its not quite right for me.

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phoenixfire

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2010, 06:34:36 PM »

I think what you're saying is if I'm celebrating the usual christian holidays then i'm no different than Christians? If that's not what you meant, maybe you could clarify.
I do understand what you are saying as to ritual being part and parcel of BEING Wiccan.
I do not believe that I am Wiccan, there are many aspects that I can appreciate. But i'm beginning to realize its not quite right for me.



I believe what C_A is saying is that if you don't do rituals, you are like the Christians who only go to church on Christmas and Easter, which I believe he means as a sort of insult. Nevermind the fact that not all those who would consider themselves Christian believe that going to church is a necessary part of their religion. And I would be inclined to think that there are many people who identify as Wiccan and believe that performing rituals is not a necessary part of their religion. But, what do I know? I'm just a trouble-making Discordian/pantheist.
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dark magus

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2010, 07:01:41 PM »

.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2010, 01:26:24 AM by dark magus »
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edens garden

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2010, 07:22:22 PM »

I think the misconception can when it went from "Wicca is not quite right for me, I believe/feel this..." turned into a generalization about Wiccans in general.
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In the magic of the northern woods I learn
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C_A

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2010, 12:19:02 AM »

I think the misconception can when it went from "Wicca is not quite right for me, I believe/feel this..." turned into a generalization about Wiccans in general.

Indeed, but there are other threads here, ( as well as countless others on the old board, sadly lost...), about the MANY people for whom Wicca is "not quite right", but use the label.  Time was when most people who were of a pagan stripe that didn't believe in the whole of Wicca had sense / decency enough to learn what DID and DIDN'T fit, and call themselves appropriately.  Nowadays, if a body believes ANY old thing other than the Abrahmic religions, they automatically start calling themselves Wiccan.  The "real" problem starts with that...
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dark magus

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2010, 12:27:46 AM »

It doesn't help either when newbies are always being told, "if it feels right then it is right" and read stuff from Silver Raven fluff and the like.
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Michelle

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2010, 01:15:45 AM »

I agree with DM. I find I'm having to "unlearn" a lot of things before I can get the issues right.
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Snake-Man

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2010, 02:34:37 AM »

I try to conduct personal rituals or participate in group rituals on the Sabbats and Esbats as much as possible.  I found a group that meets at the metaphysical store I shop at, that conducts group circles, so I've started attending those.  I attended one on Samhain, and I'll be attending the next one on Yule.

So...to answer the question, "Do I think rituals are necessary?"  Yes.
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Aurest

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Re: Are rituals neccessary?
« Reply #14 on: November 09, 2010, 07:21:58 AM »

It doesn't help either when newbies are always being told, "if it feels right then it is right" and read stuff from Silver Raven fluff and the like.

There is a certain degree of "if it feels right" involved in ritual...but only to a small extent.  For the most part, I agree with you.  I read Silver Ravendunce and I hated it. 

Just thought I'd clarify that.  Some of my posts might seem to come off that way, and it's unintentional.
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