Stepping Out of the Darkness

MCU

Recently, I was called to give a speech.
Here is the text of that speech:

“She’s eight years old and she’s drowning, held underwater in a swimming pool.

Yesterday, she loved running on a hilltop in Redwood City. The grass feeling cool between her toes. Yesterday, she climbed a tree.

But today, her brother holds her down, underwater. She is drowning. And he is waiting. Waiting for her to stop moving.

What does this do to a little girl?

I can tell you. My brother finally stepped away.

But the tough times didn’t end there. My brother kept up his torture of me until I couldn’t take it anymore.

So at 8 years old, I stepped to the edge of my bunk bed. I wrapped some yarn around my neck again and again. I stepped off my bunk bed – And I hung there for a moment—until the yarn broke.

My story is about stepping OUT of the darkness.

Sure, I’ve experienced dark times, but I’ve also experienced other things.

I once turned to a friend and said, “How many depressed people does it take to change a light bulb? None. They just sit there in the dark.” [audience laughter]

I’m glad to be speaking with you today about stepping OUT of the darkness.

Along that line, I’m going to share with you the 3 Steps of Empowerment.

The First Step is Diagnosis. When I was 11, I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder – another term for this is clinical depression. Clinical Depression is not just feeling the blues. It isn’t just sometimes feeling sad. It doesn’t just go away like Seasonal Affect Disorder.

Clinical Depression is like having tinnitus. That’s the condition where you have constant ringing in your ears. Except this situation is a horrible feeling of pain, sadness, and hopelessness. It can get so bad that death seems like the only way out. A friend of mine killed himself. He had clinical depression.

So Diagnosis is the First Step.

The Second Step is: The person must say, “I want help.”

I’m using the word “say” – but the situation is really about taking action. The depressed person needs to take action.

You and I cannot help a depressed person if they don’t want help. If they won’t take their meds, and if they won’t show up for therapy – there’s not much we can do.

I know that I have family members who want to find a “Happy button” on me. Well—I don’t have a Happy button on me.

Can I borrow yours? [I address an extrovert in the audience. The audience laughs.]

As I mentioned: the Second Step is when the person says, “I want help.” The depressed person has to choose it.

I wanted help. So I worked with psychiatrists and therapists. And I take appropriate medication.

The Third Step is: Maintenance.

Sometimes, I think of maintenance of my well-being as a daily fight. I have certain “weapons” to use to hold my ground against clinical depression.

First, I have a therapy animal, a cat I named Magick. I called him Magick because he makes food disappear! [audience laughter]

I love him and petting him helps me to feel better. He helps me switch to happier thoughts. I feel he takes away some of the pain.

Second, I stay active. I go out with friends when possible. I enjoy laughing with friends. I also stay active by taking daily walks with my sweetheart.

Third, I have things that I do for myself when I’m alone. Knitting and writing are great ways to help me cope.

I have shared with you 3 Steps of Empowerment that mean a lot to me.
1) Diagnosis
2) The person must say “I want help.”
3) Maintenance

And finally about that eight-year-old girl who felt no one cared … She is still inside me, but now I am a full grown woman.
I am here.
I care.
I will protect her.”


People have told me that the above is a powerful speech.

As a Wiccan, I still feel, at times, that I must protect myself.

Do you feel the same?

How can you protect yourself from those who do not care or do not understand our Pagan path?

I’ve learned that I need to face reality. To this day, my parents still do not respect my Wiccan path. They never ask me questions nor hear me out.

Part of taking care of myself is to gather with like-minded people who love me.

May you find your tribe.

Blessed Be,

Moonwater

P.S. To sign up for our E-Newsletter click here.


Looking for gifts this Yule season?

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See my designs at Redbubble. 

For more of Moonwater SilverClaw, consider some of her books:

Goddess Has Your Back

Goddess Has Your Back: How Wicca Can Help You Raise Your Self-Esteem and Make Your Life Magickal

 

 

The Hidden Children of the Goddess Book

The Hidden Children of the Goddess Embrace Wicca, Become Strong, Be at Peace with Yourself and the World Around You

 

 

Real Magick

Beyond the Law of Attraction to Real Magic: How You Can Remove Blocks to Prosperity, Happiness and Inner Peace

 

 

Goddess Walks Beside You: How You Can Listen, Learn and Enjoy the Wiccan Path

Witch, Pagan, Wiccan, Christian Witches — What’s the Difference?

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What flavor are you?

“Christian Witches?!” my friend, Megan, stamped her foot. “No way! Somebody doesn’t have a clue about what a witch is!” She went on, “A witch can’t be Christian!”

There’s a lot of controversy and debate over the terms Wiccan, Witch, Christian Witch, and Pagan. Some people even suggest that Wiccans are not Pagans. Some Wiccans say they do not practice magick. What?!

Certain Wiccans even claim that they do not worship the Old Gods.

Name calling and criticism arise.

So who is right and who is wrong?

It’s more complicated than that.

Wicca is a term coined by Gerald B. Gardner. He used this term for a male witch. He employed Wicce for a female witch. But soon the term “Wica” was used to describe the new line of witchcraft that descended from him.

So Witchcraft and Wica were one and the same at that time. The spelling changed to Wicca some time later.

As the faith was spread, people used Wicca instead of the word Witchcraft to describe themselves. Apparently, they wanted to get away from the bad connotations that went along with the word Witch. Still, when you’re a practitioner, Wicca and Witchcraft are the same.

Wicca continues to be a spiritual/religious path that has incorporated the belief in the Old Gods and Magick. Witches (this refers to both male and female practitioners) are the high priests/priestesses of the Old Religion.

Wiccans use magick to create their magick-working spaces and to honor their Gods and Goddesses for positive change in their lives.

The older Traditions of Wicca still do this.

“What are The Witch Wars?” my friend, Megan, asked. It’s reported that things fell apart in the 1970-1990’s when a number of new people learned some of Wicca but then left before they were taught all of the secrets of the Craft (Wicca/Witchcraft). The term “Witch Wars” refers to the yelling and thrown insults between a number of groups. Were these actual wars, including violence? I have not seen reports of that. Still, the insults, gossip, and baiting did cause real trouble.

How did things go so wrong? The new people (without full knowledge of Wicca) thought they had all the knowledge. They started their own covens and began to teach many things that weren’t quite right or just downright wrong.

*  *  *

What Is the Difference between “Witch” and “Heathen”?

Witchcraft is a term that is very specific to the region of  European/English/Scottish/Ireland area. It is a geographic area where that term was and is used. And it applies only to the people that called themselves witches in that geographic location.

Heathens are not witches, for example. They do not call themselves witches. The Heathen path is generally northern Germany/Scandinavia/Sweden. These are the people of the “heath”, where heather grows in the colder European region—north of the European/English/Scottish/Ireland area.

The above is about the derivation of some terms. Anyone who practices the Wiccan faith is a witch. The religion is witchcraft. We’re not only referring to people from one geographic region of the world. Wicca is spreading, and all people can practice this beautiful path.

*  *  *

Is it true that there are Wiccans who do not practice magick?

Some people call themselves Wiccans and claim they do no magick.

Okay, wait, hold on here. How can they claim this?

Let’s go back to what Wiccans do. They Cast Circle—which, in itself, is performing magick. So if you cast circle, you do magick. You’re a witch.

(There are people who use magick in their religions and who do not call themselves witches, like the Voodoo/Vodoun/Hoodoo/Santeria religions.)

Let’s also take care about the spelling of “magick.” Magick is pretty much the wielding of natural forces to improve one’s life. (On the other hand, “stage magic” has the label, “magic” – with no “k.” Stage magic is the art of performing illusions—like the work of David Copperfield. No magick is taking place!)

“Wait a minute, what about ‘ceremonial magicians’?” Megan asks. Ceremonial magicians do not worship the Gods and Goddesses. So by definition they are not Wiccans.

*  *  *

So what is a Pagan?

Pagans form a larger group of individuals that do not practice the Abrahamic religions. The Abrahamic religions identify the patriarch Abraham, from the Old Testament of the Bible, the Torah, and the Koran, as the origin of their religion. So the Abrahamic religions are: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

Paganism was a Christian term to indicate people who came from the country. Pagani is a Latin term for “country dweller” as opposed to city dweller. These country dwellers tended to keep their older religions alive (even after the arrival of Christianity or Islam). At the time, certain people referred to farmers, serfs and peasants as Pagans.

Pagans include Wiccans, Asatru, Heathen, Druids, Buddhists and more.

*  *  *

What about Judeo-Pagans and Christian Witches?

Sigh … Yes, there are the people who call themselves Judeo-Pagans or Christian Witches.

Stop! Above we just went through the actual definition of Pagan—in two words let’s all say it: “NOT Christian.” Thank you.

The Judeo/Christian God (as reported in their sacred texts) denounces Witches, Pagans, and Wiccans.

*  *  *

I realize that people can and do call themselves anything they want.

What we notice is that some people stop using definitions and language as others do.

What if people create their own new terms?

For example, I have a friend who coined the term “Catapult-Moment.” So he can define “Catapult-Moment” as he chooses.

Still, when we’re in conversation with others, let’s look back and see the definitions of what we’re talking about.

Sound good?

Blessed Be,

Moonwater SilverClaw

P.S. Thank you to my High Priestess Lady Elinore for her guidance.

P.S. To sign up for our E-Newsletter click here.


Looking for gifts this Yule season?

PentagramWheel2

See my designs at Redbubble. 

For more of Moonwater SilverClaw, consider some of her books:

Goddess Has Your Back

Goddess Has Your Back: How Wicca Can Help You Raise Your Self-Esteem and Make Your Life Magickal

 

 

The Hidden Children of the Goddess Book

The Hidden Children of the Goddess Embrace Wicca, Become Strong, Be at Peace with Yourself and the World Around You

 

 

Real Magick

Beyond the Law of Attraction to Real Magic: How You Can Remove Blocks to Prosperity, Happiness and Inner Peace

 

 

Goddess Walks Beside You: How You Can Listen, Learn and Enjoy the Wiccan Path