This post is a bit of a warning.
There’s a group on Facebook that claims to be a teaching group for witches (Witchy Witch Teaching Circle). It’s a pretty normal group most of the time. The admin, however, was found giving bad advice. When questioned about it, she blocked at least 4 people from commenting or posting in the group. Possibly more at this point. I think this is a dangerous response for someone who claims to be a Pagan teacher, to resist any kind of disagreement.
I also think it’s important to explain the situation. She posted a screenshot of a conversation in which she told a man that he couldn’t be a witch because he was Taoist, Buddhist, and/or Hindu. She said “being a witch means having only witchcraft as a belief system.” This post is in an effort to avoid that kind of misinformation.
What’s wrong with that?
Being a witch requires 2 things 1] the practice of witchcraft and 2] the choice to be called a witch. That’s it. I may not agree totally with the idea of a Christian witch, but I wouldn’t tell them they *can’t* be a witch if they so choose.
There is no such rule that states a witch isn’t allowed to follow different belief systems. Furthermore, witchcraft is a practice. Yes, it is based on a type of faith, but in and of itself, it is not its own “belief system.” And it isn’t an exclusionary practice.
Naturally, this was pointed out to the admin in question by multiple people. Her response, instead of considering that maybe she’d given some bad advice, was to block and ban every person who commented along those lines. Every one.
Petty and dangerous
To make such a claim as “being a witch means having only witchcraft as a belief system” is harmful, misleading, and a sign of dangerous leadership. To deny any questioning of a claimed religious teacher is borderline cult behavior.
This did not sit well with me at all. As someone who strives to be a Pagan teacher, who wishes to help and guide witches in need, I’m always on the lookout for dangerous and controlling behaviors. The Pagan community deals with enough misunderstanding and negative representation. We don’t need more.
It’s okay to ask and even correct a teacher
Keep your eyes open, Witchlings. Not every witch who claims to be a teacher wants to help you. Some just want to be religious leaders, to have followers, to never be questioned.
But I urge you to question. I urge you to speak out when information rings untrue, when something seems harmful, or just because it’s confusing. Speak up and question anyone who claims to be a religious teacher. The right teacher won’t mind.
Lady Morgana Brighid, HP MCCA