Wicca gets a bad rap because it is a form of witchcraft, and that term has historically been used to denote malevolent magic. As for people thinking Pagan religions in general are bad, contributing factor of this is that there is a LOT of ignorance and misinformation out there about Wiccca and the Pagan religions. A perusal of these very forums will show that people think that Pagans don’t believe in god (quite the contrart, we are polytheists who believe in many gods) that we worship Satan, (a Judeo-Christian entity) that we are all immature high schoolers who want to scare our parents (tell that to the professional, adult Wiccan parents raising their kids in their faith whom I know,) that our religion is “false” and has “nothing to offer” compared to monotheistic religions. People choose to remain ignorant about a very real and viable religion, or choose to only define it in the terms of monotheistic religions which teach that all other religions are wrong. Many people are too lazy to go to a book or website where Wiccans describe their own religion, and so the misinformation spreads through biased sources and dismissive assumptions.
Paganism is not a religion: It’s an umbrella term used to cover all religions which are non-Abrahamic and self-identify as Pagan. Most religions which self-identify as Pagan are Neo-Pagan religions – ie, modern religions which are partially or wholly inspired by or reconstructed from the ancient pre-Christian religions of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.
However, most people who think that Wicca and other Pagan religions are “bad” are usually either ignorant or narrow-minded. As evinced by some of the other respondents to this question who are clearly members of a religion which feels that every other religion except their own is evil.
Other misconceptions: Paganism is not a synonym for polytheistic or “earth-based”. Wicca and witchcraft are not interchangeable terms. Wicca and other Neo-Pagan religions are not ancient. Only Wiccans follow the Wiccan Rede; other Neo-Pagan religions have their own, different, ethical codes. Arthurian legends are only relevant to Wicca, and not other Neo-Pagan religions.
Paganism is a religion recognized by the United States and many other countries. I don’t care if you have a BS in religion, drryanzi, it’s obviously BS!!
People think Wicca and Paganism are bad because they have been misinformed as to its intent and origin. Many people, Christians especiallhy, think that Paganism is the root of Satanism. Its simply not true. Satanism is a direct result of Christianity.
I will post some links for those people who are ingorant about it. I am ashamed that a person who claims to have a BS in religion wouldn’t know of Wicca. What college did you go to?? It was proabaly a Christian one, which in that case he got a BS in BS.
I have an associates in Liberal Arts but I knew that in 1985 it was formally recognized as a religion.
Most people have no clue as to what it is. Either paganism or Wicca. Wicca is to Paganism, what Catholic is to Christianity. Just one denomination among many various beliefs and practices. It’s easy to hate something when you are told something is bad, by someone you trust. Whether it is true or not. That’s one big difference between pagan and christian to me. Pagans question and learn for themselves, and find their own path and faith over time. Christians tend to follow and believe what they are told is the truth by their pastors, preachers, or priests, just because these men are supposed to know more than a lay person about deities. Wicca is about honoring yourself, as well as a God and Goddess. There is no need to bow down and bang you head on the ground in fear, or worry that any bad thoughts will get you cast in a fiery pit for eternity. Live your life as you choose, not as others would have you live it.
Paganism came along thousands of years before there was one singular ‘God’ defined. Paganism and Wicca challenge the Christian faith – did you know the Devil was a Christian invention? Because the early Christians didn’t think anyone should be worshipping anyone but their God, they created tales and stories about witches and devils.
Real Wiccans and Pagans follow the creed “An it harm none, do what ye will.” We do not harm others, ourselves, animals, anyone. Respect is key… and being open to other religions. We are put on this earth to learn, to follow in the foot steps of our forebearers… not to create religious intolerance all over again.
Whew. Sorry about the rant! 🙂
Basically, Pagans and Wiccans believe in multiple Gods – Wicca and ‘witches’ practice spells and ‘magik’.
First of all, I am Wiccan and no Wicca is not simply believing in witches and warlocks as some have suggested here. It is a complex set of beliefs, made only more complex by the fact that belief is not the key issue. I consider myself polytheistic. To pastorbarryn who posted above, I say this: I do not serve the Gods to GET things, I serve Them because I love Them and know Them like family members and close friends.
With regards to your question: the people who think Wicca and NeoPaganism are “bad” know nothing about the belief systems or else are bound to a set of beliefs that purports to be the only truth. Consequentially anything else must be a lie, and lies must be there to cover up something bad. This is their logic. I hope this helps.
Well I don’t think paganism is so bad since I’m a pagan. However remember that the non-pagans think they’re right and that others are in error. Jews think Christians are bad, Christians think Jews are bad, Muslims think those two are bad, those two think Muslims are bad, and not to mention the many, many Christian denominations who think all the other denominations are bad and going to hell. You can’t win. So if you were not a pagan (meaning you are Jewish, Christian or Muslim), then half the world would consider you to be bad anyway. Stuff that, I’ll go with pagan, at least I’m free. As for Wiccans, I consider them to be like anyone else and therefore they’re not bad in my book.
I must agree with your first answer to this question, paganism is not a religion. pagans are those that believe in many gods or goddess. In signs and things, but paganism is not in itself a religion. Just a way of saying you don’t believe in One God, a Supreme Being, One Creator, you believe in many.
As far as Wicca is concerned, it is a belief in witchcraft, white and black, been around forever, but just recently has it been being called are religion, most likely to get the image of witches and warlocks out of the minds of people and give it some respect.
Those who believe in pagan gods, most likely are not bad, but the concept leave to a one for all and all for one, no way to anchor society to a moral code of conduct, one that will apply across the board. As for Wicca, it still and most likely will always hold that it is more grounded in the dark side of existence; therefor something that one should not get too deeply involved in, for once one lays with the devil, they conceive its young.
Because they dont understand it.. Its always been looked down upon.. Im personally not into wicca, but there was a time when that was all I wanted to learn about.. If you want a good story book to read (novel).. You should try readin The Mists of Avalon. People call it the femenist version of the Knights of the Round Table. Its basically the same story,… Well, kidna.. more twists.. but its told from the womans side of the story.. From Authurs sister, mother, and cousins. its a long book, but very interesting..
As an atheist, I think all religions are bad.
On a scale of badness, paganism and wiccan stuff is pretty mild. I don’t have a problem with it, especially since it seems to be more people/earth oriented rather than being centered on butt-kissing some hateful spiteful god.
If it works for you – good.
Folks tend to fear what they don’t understand. Or they are the Bible bangers, who thinks they’re religion is the right one. I am Pagan. Wicca is just one path of paganism. For those who didn’t know, paganism has been around way before christianity.