The Wiccan Warrior
How martial arts and the warrior tradition can empower Wiccan spiritual practice.
BY: Kerr Cuhulain
For every strength there is a weakness and vice versa. A Wiccan Warrior recognizes the totality of these characteristics and puts them to use in the most appropriate way. You may be a cook, a teacher, a painter, or whatever other occupation you care to name. Every Warrior is different. "It is necessary to polish your own path."
And this is the way it should be. True Warriors are realists. They take what they've got and they use it effectively. Those familiar with Al-Anon's Twelve-Step Program will recognize some of the steps here:
4. Make a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
10. Continue to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
As a Wiccan Warrior I've taken responsibility for my life. I strive to create my life spontaneously rather than letting it be determined by my past, using the principles and techniques of Wicca. What I am is what I've forged with the energy I've raised and the magic that I've worked. I cause change in conformity with my will.
What does taking responsibility mean for the Wiccan Warrior? In Wicca I found that there was effectively only one law, called "The Wiccan Rede." "Rede" is a Middle English term which comes from the root word "raedan," which means "to interpret." In the second edition of Webster's New Twentieth Century Dictionary it is defined as, "1. counsel; advice. 2. plan, scheme. 3. a story, tale. 4. an interpretation."
A modern English translation of the Wiccan Rede would be: "Do what you will, as long as it harms no one." The Wiccan Rede is a serious responsibility. It teaches us that every action has its price. It calls upon the Wiccan to examine every one of their actions to determine their implications to others. It calls for a high level of self-discipline from every Witch. The basis of law in Western society is extensive sets of rules and regulations against which most people judge their conduct, a relatively simple process by comparison. It is not an unstructured call to self-examination like the Rede.
Some Wiccan detractors have interpreted the Wiccan Rede to mean, "Do whatever feels good." Over the years I've encountered some people at Pagan festivals and public Circles who have demonstrated by their words and deeds that they seem to have arrived at a similar interpretation. Those who have the least to lose by being public are usually the first to go public. Unfortunately these sort of irresponsible public antics have sometimes made it very difficult for those of us with a lot to lose to follow suit.
The moment I became a cop I put myself under a spotlight of public scrutiny. The moment that I became public about being a Wiccan, this scrutiny was intensified. After all, people have been bombarded with propaganda about Witches being Satanists for years. So it was only natural to expect my department, and the public, to examine me closely and at length to see if I was really some dangerous Satanic cult member. In my case, I knew that the only way that these people could reassure themselves was to allow them to investigate me. The greater the responsibility attached to your profession, the greater the likelihood that scrutiny of this sort will be turned in your direction.