Saturday, July 17, 2010
Displaying My Occult Self & Lessons of Craft History
Now that summer is here, and I've had to pull out the tank-tops again. An interesting predicament has come up. That is the decision to wear my Pentagram necklace with my tank-top shirt. Obviously, it is not a concern with most other shirts, because I can wear the necklace under my shirt close to my skin where it's obscured from public view. Summer has me rethinking my entire philosophy of wearing my Witch jewelery.
In my early beginnings with practicing Wicca in its solitary form I had acquired some very splendid silver rings, and a pentagram necklace that I often would wear in public. Not being ashamed of my Occult studies I was rather open about it back then. I was also a lot more wild a young man too. This was a time in my life when I was not overly concerned with what other people would think about me. To this day I'm still very free in my expression, however since this is my fresh start in the Craft, I am being a lot more conscious minded about how my display of my involvement effects my outer life in my everyday interactions with society, and the community I live within and frequent daily.
Since my resurgence in active practice I've taken out my Witchy jewelery again, and am enjoying the Magickal feeling that comes with wearing them. In addition to the aesthetic look, there is also a consecrated magnetism of purpose each piece carries and vibrates around me; for example the pentagram is a symbol of protection and silver corresponds to the Goddess.
Despite the beneficial qualities & function that I am aware of represented in each piece. There is also a psychological tuning of my mind that occurs when I don them. They provide me a constant reminder of my living in the Craft with the dedication to learn, study and practice the ways in various aspects as I integrate the training into a daily regimen.
Another aspect that has come up for me regarding this open display of my occult involvement is something that is often written about, and discussed by others that have been here before me.
This is the matter of secrecy. When I first started in the Craft, I was younger and wilder, more open, and my style of dress often reflected my various creative pursuits in life.
It is well known that the wearing of a Pentagram is generally mistaken for something carrying a
negative connotation by most of the general public. Even in a highly liberally minded Country there is a point of concern with advertising involvement with anything occult. People fear what they don't understand, and with most things alternative, people will jump to conclusions based on preconceived notions of understanding on a subject thought to be evil, or wicked.
History has informed us that violence and unwarranted attacks on people that break from the
cultural norms is a real occurrence. Regardless of my declaration of beliefs being something not to be feared, it is usually not enough to sway an individual, or group to change theirs in only a few sincere words, or actions. Therefore, the axiom of 'To Know, To Will, To Dare, To Be Silent' is not only relevant to the Magus, but also the Witch. There is a large cult style following that has risen up with all the trendy movies of being Witchy, and this has blended into the latest Vampire craze too. The power of Magick is fun tween stuff; but when you're an adult, and a functioning member of society, this pursuit can have major repercussions on your life. You can lose jobs, relationships, and create more problems instead of helping to solve them. I have studied world history, we all know it's filled with atrocities, and acts of discrimination. In our history of Witchcraft there is of course the burning times. Also many Magicians involved in the past with matters of Magick have not fared much better. This is an issue that concerns men & women within the Craft. Persecution for your treasured, personal beliefs is a very real threat. Even the most devout Christian faces reproach even though they are known to stand for goodness & light. Think how much more reproach the Wiccans must face when a world of ignorance has corrupted the truth about their practices to be that of something dark, shadowy and scary.
Having pondered this as I don and wear my Magickal jewelery I have come to the conclusion that I will use my intuition and outlook of the changing circumstances of my days & nights; letting my feelings govern when I choose to display my Witch self in society with various pieces of jewelery. An example of this would be in choosing to wear only one ring that is less conspicuous to the public eye than the Pentagram would be shining brightly around my neck. There are times it's okay to Pentagram, and times when it is fine to place it in my wallet until I'm in the right environment to let it get some sun & moonlight outside around my neck. Since most people where I live don't wear Pentagrams around their necks in full view, I should accept that a measure of shock in being seen with mine is a very real result. I like to ask myself, am I wearing this for them or for me? Some will enjoy the idea of shocking others by display, but I choose to not take such an approach. The truth is that anyone can wear a Pentagram around their necks; and there are indeed a lot of people who wear one whom themselves are diabolical in nature, or just simply weird, freaky people that it would be wise to steer clear of in my life. So why would I want strangers that might be open to friendship with me, suddenly diverted, do to their misunderstanding, or very real caution about becoming closer, because of what a piece of jewelery conjures up in their minds when they catch it in their sight?
Therefore, I will be more consciously aware of when it is appropriate to star-shine, and when it is not. People will often make assumptions of a person's character based on first impressions, so I don't want those impressions to be ones based on fear, but rather ones of trust.
I am reminded that the Craft is meant to be enjoyed and celebrated, but if wearing a piece of jewelery creates an environment of discomfort for myself, or others, than in a way this goes against the principles I'm learning to put into practice with this beautiful art that connects us with nature, and is a source of healing and well-being. To wear items, or act in ways that do not keep me harmoniously connected with the community is anti-productive to the objective, and intention of developing a firmer connection with nature.
For Wicca is about life and the community is life, it provides life, everything is interconnected; therefore it is critical that in being a Witch in a technological world where community extends around the Earth with the click of a mouse, that I put into practice the responsibility of thinking about others while I think about myself; in life as a citizen, living as a Witch.