So here we go....I have been on my path basically since 1996. I remember sitting in my friend's bedroom and we were talking about religion versus spirituality. I was complaining that conventional Christianity was not suiting my needs and didn't know where else to turn. He then asked me if I had ever considered Wicca. I could feel myself pale, and I asked "What...you mean witchcraft? Don't they worship the devil?" He laughed and then explained to me all about his goddess focused path. I was hooked! This is exactly what I was looking for. And the hunt for knowledge began. A couple of weeks later I was sitting in a coffee shop and I overheard some people talking about paganism. I listened to the conversation and gathered the courage afterward to approach the main speaker. I asked him questions about his path and he answered them all with patience. One night, he told me that he decided that he was going to take me on as a student, on one condition....that I could pass his test. Oh man!! I was scared. What kind of test?? He wrote something down on a piece of paper and asked if I could get him something to drink. I started for the coffee counter and he patiently told me that he wanted me to run to the corner gas station instead. The key was that he didn't tell me what he wanted to drink. He said I must FEEL the answer. Feel the answer? What does he think I am? Psychic or something? Yeah right. So I went into the gas station and walked up to the cooler and gazed blankly at the plethora of choices before me. What could he possibly be thirsty for? I had absolutely no clue!! "Get him a Cherry Coke," I heard a voice in my head tell me. Nah. He had Coke last night, I thought. I will get him a Coke. "No, a Cherry Coke," the voice insisted. I shook it off. I grabbed the Coke and headed for the check out line. "He wants a Cherry Coke," the voice said again. I looked around me. Maybe I should but this line is so long. I am not stepping out of it to get something he won't drink. And so I bought him the Coke and went back to the coffee shop. I handed it to him and said "I got you this because you had one the other night, but something inside me kept saying..." and he turned over the paper, and there it was plain as day....CHERRY COKE. I must of paled because he gently said, "Listen to your inner voice. Trust your inner voice for it is seldom wrong. We begin tomorrow. Good night." I was elated!! I passed the test, even though I failed! I wasn't sure how that worked out but it didn't matter...I had a teacher! Oh how I enjoyed those nightly classes! I learned so much from him! I grew to love, admire and trust my teacher. We sat in circle together. He helped me learn how to read the tarot. I learned about the elements and what they meant to a witch. I learned how to honor the Mother Goddess by honoring and protecting the earth. I learned how to shield myself and how to make a talisman. And I learned first hand not to ever work magic without completely understanding karma. A lesson that I haven't had to re-learn, thank the gods. Sadly, there was a death in my family and I had to return back to my home state, leaving my teacher. That was a hard choice to make, but ultimately, family came first, as it should. We continued our lessons over the phone, but it became less and less. Our paths were parting and eventually, I was all alone. I studied from books for a while and kept adding to my Book of Shadows. One day, I met someone. Oh, and I thought that she was the absolute love of my life. I was still pretty zealous about my path, so I shared that I was a witch. She smiled nervously and said, "That really creeps me out. You can't do that stuff if we're together. I don't want you hexing me if I break up with you." This should have triggered so many red flags, but alas, it did not. I was in love. So I stepped off my path for ten years....ten long, dark, unhappy years. I was so lost and didn't know how to fill this incredible void in my life. I tried returning to church, and it wasn't fulfilling this intense spiritual need I had. Finally that relationship ended. I entered into a new relationship. I admitted that at one time I practiced witchcraft. I was waiting to be struck down by lightning. It never came. She just accepted it and told me that it was my path. She was amazing. And she has stood by my side ever since. I had a brief training with a group that ultimately wasn't for me. So I have been searching for a new group. I had an interview with one and will be attending their New Moon Rite as a guest tomorrow night. Is this the group that I have been searching for all along? Who knows? I guess I will learn in time.
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