The Wiccan Warrior

How martial arts and the warrior tradition can empower Wiccan spiritual practice.

Reprinted with permission from "Wiccan Warrior" published by Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd. Copyright c 2000 Kerr Cuhulain. All rights reserved.

Each person has the Warrior inside of them. It is a personal decision as to whether you use this archetype or not. Making a connection with the Warrior inside of you is a way of accessing energy and magic that can bring many positive changes into your life. Jungian psychoanalyst Robert Moore put it this way:

"A man who appropriately accesses the archetypal Warrior draws upon enormous resources that enable him to live an empowered life in the service of his fellow creatures... When the Warrior is on-line, we feel a rush of blood and adrenaline, a quickening heartbeat, and a sense of something momentous about to happen. We feel mobilized for action, ready to charge forward to meet life head-on. Our daily concerns fall away from us and we are swept up into a kind of ecstacy in which we see ourselves and the world with a sharpened focus and clarity. Hidden rage is transmuted into energized courage. We come into touch with the great mystery of life and death, and we feel a strange sense of pleasure in the midst of pain."

What Sun Tzu refers to here is accepting reality and working with it. This has always been the true Warrior's way. The most important aspect of a Warrior's perception of reality is honest self-evaluation. "Dishonesty to oneself is bad discipline." I accept my limitations, and either make them work for me or do what I can to turn them into advantages. Each person has natural qualities and abilities as well as certain faults and limitations.

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The path of the Wiccan Warrior connects martial disciplines with spirituality. There are many ancient precedents for connections of this sort. One only needs to look at the Asian martial arts to see how the philosophies of Zen Buddhism and Confucianism have been incorporated into them. To incorporate Wiccan philosophies into the Warrior tradition is not difficult. One can find many similarities in comparing modern Wiccan precepts with ancient martial philosophies.

For example, the symbol of the Wiccan religion is the five-pointed star or pentagram. Each point of the pentagram represents one of the five basic elements that form the building blocks of reality: earth, air, fire, water and spirit. Musashi's famous Book of Five Rings (Gorin No Sho), a book of Warrior philosophy written in the early sixteenth century, is organized according to these same five elements: Chi No Maki (The Earth Book), Mizu No Maki (The Book of Water), Hi No Maki (The Fire Book), Kaze No Maki (The Wind Book), and Ku No Maki (The Book of Emptiness). These five elements are the "five rings" referred to in the title of Musashi's work. Centuries earlier, Sun Tzu listed five essential considerations for the Warrior: "The five things are the way, the weather, the terrain, the leadership, and discipline."

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