Often times when I mention that I’m a witch, people automatically assume that I’m Wiccan.
I am not.
I had a very eclectic occult upbringing thanks to my father (a man who never met a cult he didn’t like, except maybe Scientologists and Mormons) so I have abundant childhood memories of hanging out with Wiccans who wore truly awful pink velour dresses, lived lives of general disarray including a lot of pungent cat-piss smell, and said “Blessed Be” and “Goddess Bless” at every cringe-inducing opportunity to store clerks and mailmen.
So at a visceral level, I do not like to be associated with Wicca. It registers in my mind as “dorky stuff that my dad likes.” At a more sophisticated level, I have an appreciation of Wicca – I certainly learned a lot from reading all that Raymond Buckland and Gerald Gardner as a teen (thanks Dad, Happy Yule to you, too!). But I still don’t fully jive with it.
I went through a period in my early twenties of trying to distance myself from the occult altogether. A part of me wanted to be “normal” so I joined a Presbyterian church and tried to hang. It didn’t really stick. The witch in me kept coming out.
My ongoing interest in sex and magical manifestation and imaginative ritual made me kind of a weirdo amongst those nice Presbyterians, even though I really enjoyed their candlelight prayer services and have a great appreciation for Jesus’ brand of freaky shamanism.
So I’ve given in to the fact that I’m a witch. And nowadays, I’m interested in what witchiness and wizardliness is, apart from any specific set of traditions or rituals. I sense that it’s something inherent in a person, an imaginative and psychic (i.e., “of the psyche” or soul-related) and very often intensely sexual quality of magic, mystery, and power that’s present no matter what the person’s beliefs or style.
There’s some very witchy fundamentalist Christians and Muslims out there in the world, for example. All of this is just to say that yeah – this is a magazine for Bad Witches, not Wiccans. If you’re Wiccan, that’s cool, you can be a Bad Witch and a Wiccan at the same time – probably.
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