Am I A Witch?
Yes, You Are A Witch!
Are You A Witch? Yes!
I Believe In You
Recently I came across an interesting question on HubPages. A sister Hubber wanted to know if she was still a pagan as, over time, how she practiced had changed. And the chances are, if you are here, you are wondering if the Witch Police are about to show up at your front door and tear up your membership card. Well, guess what, nobody, and I mean nobody has a right to do that. It’s a lot like the old adage about whether you think you can or can’t. If you think you can’t be a witch because you no longer do X, Y and Z, chances are you won’t feel like one. But if you realize it is normal and healthy to grow and change, you are likely still proud to call yourself a witch.
I wrote this Hub to help my brothers and sisters, both witches and pagans, as I have gone through changes myself as a witch. When I was a witchlet in the 80s and 90s, there was no Internet. I was, and still am solitary, so whether I felt like a witch or not was based on the few spell books out at the time, and a magical almanac or two.
And as I went along and learned and grew, so did the way I answered the question of what made me a witch. To me, today, the only answer is if what I am doing makes me happy and brings me closer to my Gods. I’m more about working with Them and less about working on my own.
And trust me, there are still days I ask myself if I am still a witch. I wake up some days not feeling magical at all, and that is perfectly normal. We are all still witches even on the days when we can’t summon an elevator by pressing a button.
As always, all writing and photography are my original work. If you borrow for Internet use, I’d sure appreciate a link back and credit where credit is due. Please note that these are my personal beliefs, and I do not speak for any other witches.
No Matter The Moon Phase, You're Still A Witch
You Are A Witch If You Believe You’re A Witch
Belief Is Everything
Are you still a witch? I can tell you you still are if you believe you are, and honestly that’s what it comes down to. Somewhere along the way people started seeing helpful guidelines such as the wheel of the year, Mother Goddess, Father God, and spells and rituals as something written in stone. What was once freedom to choose became dogma, and I feel that has hurt a lot of witches.
I’m not saying that having structure is a bad thing. Structure has served to keep the Craft alive, and for some it is a good fit. Some people need structure and set times to do things as it helps them connect with God/dess. And the rest of us couldn’t tell you what moon phase it is without an app, or never worked with the moon phases to begin with.
But we are all still witches if we feel we are. There are no Witch Police to tell us we aren’t, even if some folks try to appoint themselves as such. So don’t worry if you currently have zero energy to do magic, or you’ve changed your practices or beliefs. We all have unique journeys as witches, no two are exactly alike, so please don’t compare yourself to anyone else. You are the witch you were always meant to be.
What Makes You Witch?
Believing in yourself. That is all it takes. To have the courage may not always be easy, but believing in yourself is what makes you a witch. What makes you a witch is your belief in your ability to change your life and those of others for good through the use of magic, which I remind my little witchlets, is just fancy prayer.
And although rituals, spells and witchy gear can help, they really are not what makes you a witch. You are what makes you a witch. All the awesome stuff about you. All the stuff you know, all the intent you feel, every little thing about you makes you a witch. You are positively brimming with magic!
I know doubt may be creeping in because you no longer cast spells or do rituals, but don’t let it, OK? It is perfectly natural to go through periods of rest and to change as we grow as witches. And remember this too, every act done with intent, and I mean everything you do on a daily basis, can be seen as a magical act. How much more witchy can you get?
God/dess Is Everywhere
What Doesn’t Make You A Witch?
Spell books, candles and all other witchy gear. It’s great to have, but it doesn’t make you a witch any more than having power tools would make you a master craftsman. All a candle, or cauldron or anything else is, is a helpful tool for focusing energy, and some witches feel they are training wheels we should try to evolve beyond. And while other hold the equally valid view that they power our work, they are, at the end of the day, just mundane objects. Having them doesn’t make me or you witch. You make you a witch, remember?
Are You A Natural Witch?
Do I Need Initiation?
If you want to be part of a coven that requires it, then yes, you do. If you are a solitary like myself or you simply don’t believe in it, then no. I personally feel the only one who can truly initiate us if God/dess. If we are meant to be witches we are naturally called to magic, but sometimes not to a coven, and that’s OK.
I know, my brothers and sisters in covens may not agree, but that’s OK too. Because witches come in all shapes and sizes. If you feel you absolutely need an initiation to be a real witch, then ask Goddess to lead you to a ritual or a loving coven. If not, then just accept it is not part of your path. It isn’t part of mine thus far and I’m OK with that.
Everything You Do Is Magic
A lot of times we discredit ourselves as witches. When we are not working from spell books we might feel the simpler things we do, such as visiting our altars or lighting a candle is not real magic, but it is. Remember, everything we do with intent is a form of magic. Everything. Cooking food to nourish ourselves, offering up thanks as we eat, visiting a sick friend or neighbor. They are all acts of intent with a specific goal in mind and we pour our energy into them. Magic!
This doesn’t mean I want you stressing out or striving to make every act magical, but an awareness that it can be a magical act can make it so. Try it. The next time you are doing something, say, writing a letter to a friend to show you care, think of your intent while you are writing. You’re already doing it anyways, you are writing because you want to show you care and send something to show you care, so the magic is already there.
Magic Is Everywhere
It’s OK To Need Time Off
No, really, it is. I know, I know. The latest article you read insists you should be doing X, Y or Z to be a real witch. If that works for the writer, more power to them, but that is their path, not yours. You may just be too tired and no longer feel connected to the wheel of the year. You may not feel any connections to the heavily Celtic guides you once treasured, or maybe like me you’ve grown more eclectic and not less.
It is perfectly OK to close down altars, to stop doing spells and rituals and recharge for a time. It can be as long as it takes. You could never cast a spell or do a ritual again and still be a witch. Your magic isn’t going anywhere, it’s always inside you, you just need a vacation from using it so often.
Make Your Own Magic
Every Little Thing You Do Is Magic
Remember how every act with intent is magic? Then maybe it’s time to make your own magic. You don’t need to develop your own system and write a book, but do what works for you. Maybe for now five minutes of just sitting still in a hectic day to recharge is all the magic you can muster, then do it.
Maybe you only have the energy for one weary thought to Goddess before dropping into bed, do it. It doesn’t have to be a high ritual, whatever is working for you, and I mean anything. Maybe reading a book or listening to music is an offering to you and therefore a mini ritual. Maybe walks where you talk to God/dess is what works best for you, you are doing something that is generating a connection with God/dess, and once you find it, you have all you need.
I often go for walks to talks to one of my Gods or Goddesses, to bounce problems off of them. I also will play You Tube videos as offerings, certain songs I know They like, or read certain books. I make these times rituals simply by setting aside time for them and seeing it as sacred. But your offerings and time spent with Divinity may be different. Whatever works for you is what works. Don’t worry if I didn’t mention it or no other witch works that way. We all have a unique connection to God.dess.
Goddess Is Calling You
I Don’t Have A God!
At one time, back when I first started studying, it was just God and Goddess. Or just Goddess in some cases. There were guides to possible faces of these Two to work with, but it was stressed they were just one of many faces and there was no real pressure to find your Matron or Patron. Then as time went on, things changed. Now the Old Gods were coming to the forefront, and demanding to be seen as unique Gods with some people.
What the huh? Worse, when the Gods arrive, they have a tendency to not leave and let us get back to the faceless and nameless God/dess we were used to serving. But this doesn’t happen for everyone. We must remember that Goddess is a lot more complex than we currently understand, but my guess is that Divinity wants something different from everyone.
Some of us will naturally work with the Goddess, others with the God, some will eventually work with Gods who come forward, and it is all good. So don’t worry if you currently or never get a named Diety. That is OK, it’s totally normal, as is getting one. Neither way is better or worse, it just simply is.
You are loved no matter how you work with your God or Goddess. It doesn’t make you less special or less loved to serve one way or the other. Remember that God/dess loves you more than you can possibly imagine just the way you are. Have faith that all is as it should be, while keeping yourself open to change and your path will flow to you naturally.
A Very Witchy Conclusion
We all go through periods where we don’t feel like witches. Maybe our lives are changing and we just don’t have the mental energy for formal rituals any more. Or we left a coven, or we just can’t remember the last time we cast a spell. And that is perfectly natural. Much like the wheel of the year, we go through periods of vibrant growth, slowing growth, then a dying off of old ways and a time of dormancy.
But our magic is still there. Once we have rested and recharged and accepted our new way, we can once again feel like witches. The important thing to remember is that no one act is what makes us a witch. What makes us witches is what is in our heart and our intent. Goddess doesn’t give out brownie points for the amount of gear we own, the number of rituals we attend, or the degrees we earn, and we know that.
What Goddess does reward is an honest seeking with our hearts. A willingness to be open to new paths, and yes, to times of dormancy too. We are still witches, even when it seems to us that we are not. We are merely waiting for our magical spring to grow again.
How Do You Know You Are A Witch?
I’d love to hear feedback from you. Part of the reason I wrote this article was in response to the question, but also because I myself needed time off to rest and recharge. I went through a time of wondering if I was still a witch, and of course I was. I just needed time off. And although my practices have changed wildly over the years and how I define myself as a witch has (I used to be all about how much gear I owned and how many spells and rituals I did) I am still a witch because I believe I am. But I appreciate some pagans and witches need more structure too, so respectful comments are welcome.