Just a few thoughts

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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Witchcraft is NOT a Religion

Maybe I'm the only person who thinks about this type of thing, but I'm hoping that I'm not.

I've noticed a lot of people saying that witchcraft is a religion, but that isn't true. Witchcraft is a craft, a practice, a skill, etc. Anyone from any religion can become a witch, even atheists can be witches. See? You don't even need a religion to be a witch!

I think that a lot of people are interchanging the words "Wicca" and "Witchcraft" or something like that. Some people seem to think that all witches are Wiccan and all Wiccans are witches. That isn't true, either. Wicca IS a religion, and many practitioners use witchcraft, but not all. Those two words are far from interchangeable.

Another reason some may mistake witchcraft for a religion might be because a lot of us (witches) tack on the term "witch" when giving our religious affiliation. For example, when I'm asked about my religion/spirituality/path, etc., I typically say that I am and Eclectic Pagan Witch. I do that because I'm not ashamed of being a witch, but also because witchcraft is incorporated into my religious practices.

Witchcraft is not a religion, but it can be incorporated into religious practices (again, by anyone of any religion). Spells are basically ritualized prayers. It's a petition (usually to a higher power/to higher powers, but sometimes just to the energies of the universe) for assistance, such as for protection or healing. Basically, saying that your religion is witchcraft is like saying your religion is prayer. Neither are actually religions, but both are incorporated into many religions and religious practices.


  1. Hey :) I have been a wiccan for some time now (now I am not particularly active, but I used to be for several years) and I used to practice witchcraft, too. However, I don't understand your article very well. I used to claim myself an atheist and me-atheist wouldn't practice witchcraft, because for me the former means that I believe in no gods and nothing supernatural or transcendental. The latter means (for me), that I invite supernatural powers (gods, goddesses or energies) to assist me, as you write. But as an atheist I don't believe in these powers so I don't think this to have any sense. This is my view and I would gladly read yours, if you could answer me, it is quite important for me to know your opinion. Thanks.

  2. Well, since I'm not an atheist I can't really answer that very well. My opinions and thoughts have come from a few atheists that I've known who also practiced Witchcraft, but I'm not entirely certain how they worked it out. I think the way that they viewed it was that energy exists, but deities and the like do not. With Witchcraft, you don't have to believe in deities, but everyone believes in energy (electricity, the sun, etc.). They use energy and just don't call on deities or spirits for help. It's more about just working with energy than working with spirits of some sort.