The Wiccan Beliefs and Practices, a Brief Overview
New Age Wicca has evolved significantly from its original roots, resulting to variety of beliefs and practices. But despite of the wide diversity and pluralism in the Wicca community, Wiccans still value the same principles derived from Gardnerian Wicca, some of which includes:
- Each one of us has the divine (god or goddess) within.
- Each one of us have a spiritual to follow
- People can develop their natural gifts for divination or occult magic (or magick as spelled by occultists).
- The Earth and nature are both the manifestation of the goddess
- Nature and divine spirits are invoked through rituals.
- The goddess is the focus of worship, whether it’s a symbol or a real entity
- Celebrations and rituals linked to moon phases and seasonal changes
- Meditation, chanting, visualization, burning of candles, special rituals, and invocation (calling the force of gods or goddesses) trigger the mystical sense, reinforcing the Wiccan’s core belief system.
Depending on the group, Wiccan belief is often combined with other of mystical traditions, usually from the Celtic and/or Norse paganism, ancient Egyptian spirituality, worship of Greek and Roman gods and goddesses, Eastern Shamanism or even spiritual practices of Native American. Despite of being different in origin and some practices, all the groups mentioned above revere to nature, and promotes peace. They believe society can’t be at peace if people are not in harmony with their surroundings (nature) and mistreat their environment (Mother Earth also called as Gaia in pagan). This is what makes the philosophy of Wicca very similar to the New Age Religion supported by United Nations and many of its members, leaders and NGOs. Divinations techniques like astrology, candle magick, clairvoyant or psychic reading, tarot cards, runes, I Ching (derived from Chinese Taoism), among other occult practices, are not just common, but even encouraged by many groups.
Much like in Hinduism, Wiccans believe that the serpent represents eternal life, power and female spiritual awakening. Hinduism uses meditation and yoga to tap the subconscious and enlighten man through awakening the kundalini, or the serpent power, which is believed to be coiled at the base of our spine. Some symbols used in Wiccan tradition derived from other traditions, which include:
- The Ankh – Is an Egyptian cross-like symbol with a loop on top that reads “life”. For Egyptians, they call it the breath of life, the key of the Nile. It is associates with the worship of Isis, the Egyptian patroness of nature and magic, the ideal mother and wife.
- The Pentagram and Pentacle – Also known as pentangle or star pentagon, is a 5-pointed star drawn with five straight strokes. This symbol is used for conjuring, protection, casting spells, etc.
- The Crescent Moon – Usually in the form of crescent moon and a star, represents Greek goddess Diana, and used in Islam as a symbol of faith.
New Age Wicca differs from one group to another, and of course, they differ greatly from place to place. However, all of them follow the main tenet of Wiccan tradition they call the “Wiccan Rede”, which says “And it harm none, do as ye will”, which basically says, as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone, including yourself, do as you will.