Teaching Wicca

I’m in an introspective mood, pondering my role as a teacher in the Craft.

The last time I was in such a mood, I pondered what Wicca had given me, and what I attempt to give back. I wonder if I have been able to give enough, at least in being able to teach my students.

Part of this is due to my inescapable habit of comparing myself to others. I read about the intense instruction offered by Craft teachers forty years ago, and I know I haven’t given my students those experiences. I’ve learned about the Blue Star tradition from ; they have a more rigorous training regimen than I ever experienced. Have I done right by my students?

At the Free Spirit Gathering next month, I’m going to see a Blue Star Litha ritual; I’ve seen one before, but that was many years ago, before I became a teacher. In a couple of months, I’ll be at a combined Blue Star/Acorn Garden gathering in which we’ll share each others’ rituals. It will give me a chance to see for myself what they can do.

I remind myself that I shouldn’t pre-judge either me or my teaching. First, I recall Isaac‘s motto for the ADF: "Why not excellence?" Magic and ritual aren’t about perfection or being able to speak arcane languages in rhyme. It’s about mood, and energy, and faith. A poem doesn’t have to be a sonnet to be beautiful. I know my students can create beautiful rituals, and I can be proud of them for that.

What if I see that Blue Star, or some other branch of the Craft, has achieved something that I have not? Part of the effectiveness of a teacher is their willingness to be a student again. If there’s something else out there to learn, and there always is, I can be willing to study it with an open mind and open heart.

Then I can teach this new-found knowledge to my students. Or, if I’m truly blessed, my students and I can study it together.

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  1. shades_of_nyx

    Blue Star has been called “the Tradition with the homework.”
    We are many things, but we are not poorly educated.
    Now I really want to know, where, exactly, the curriculum differences lie. I’ve often felt the call of the proverbial “greener grass.” Hard Gard types sometimes consider us to be “bastard children” or “not really Wicca.” I want to see this discussion continue. Please, can we talk about this more?!

    1. wgseligman

      To call Blue Star a bastard child of Wicca is like raising the birther issue with respect to Obama: You demand to see the parents’ wedding certificate to prove they were married, then find excuses not to believe it when you see it.

      You guys worship the Goddess? Perform acts of worship and magic in a ritual? Work to improve yourselves and others? Then it seems to me you’re Wiccan.

      Plus you’ve got massages. *Envy*

      1. shades_of_nyx

        Rumor has it that there was a time when a Witch was a Witch, and we didn’t get into massive debates about lineage. I’m too young to have experienced that first hand.
        We have music and really good food to! (Come over to the dark side, we have cookies…)

  2. stregaflower

    I’m in support of being pushed more, actually. It’s been my experience that I perform better when the authority figure (boss, teacher, etc) expects me to be better, rigorously so.

    1. wgseligman

      Duly noted. Looking forward to your homework. (Yeah, I’m mean.)

        1. wgseligman

          I was mostly just bustin’ your chops, but homework in general is a good idea. After the next we meet for a major ritual, you may find your work load has been increased and you might not have as much time to complete the earlier homework.

          1. stregaflower

            I’m working on a Brigid essay now that I’ve finally found some good resources.

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