Wednesday, October 12, 2011

An Explication of the Principles of Wiccan Belief: Part 3

By Angela Kaufman

“We acknowledge a depth of power far greater than that apparent to the average person.  Because it is far greater than ordinary it is sometimes called ‘supernatural’, but we see it as lying within that which is naturally potential to all.”

Courtesy of NASA.
As Wiccans, we are often asked if we are “also psychic.”  We view capabilities to access senses and information not readily available to the five basic senses as something that is available for cultivation by anyone who chooses to spend the time and effort developing such talents. Sure, some people may grow up in a culture that foster the development of psychic tools and intuition, and others may find a more natural inclination toward clairvoyance, telepathy, or some other “psychic” talent.  Nevertheless, the potential to access information or harness the energy that flows through the Earth and Universe is not a “gift” that is reserved for only “a select few.” 

We acknowledge that such power and capabilities exist which gives us an advantage in knowing that we have the capability to access and utilize senses beyond the mundane. However, it does not give us any more of an advantage than it would an individual who also acknowledges such power, even outside of practice of the Wiccan religion. Conveniently, this power is labeled “supernatural” or “paranormal” because it is on the outer fringe of what traditional sensory perception would offer, but as Wiccans, we perceive “psychic” abilities as a birthright or something that is inherent in all beings.

Although traditionally the supernatural has been relegated to fringe groups, religious gurus, mystics, Witches, or traditional healers, again it is the belief in being able to access our natural abilities that allows us to cultivate a talent in doing so.  Let’s imagine the following scenario: a group of people start a community and believe in the existence of only what they had bothered to scout out (the fields, trees, etc,). The villagers establish an entire community based around what they have encountered and experienced. The group spends time tending to the trees and fields.  Thus, the villagers’ understanding of their external environment is only based on the knowledge of the things that they have already physically encountered.   Now imagine that a few villagers wandered beyond the established perimeter of their community and that they discover a nearby lake. They spend enough time by the lake to learn to swim and fish; later, their peers may consider them special or gifted since they have mastered the ability to swim or to provide food through fishing. However, the reality is that if any of the villagers chose to spend time at the lake learning how to fish or swim, they could master the same talents.

The realm of the “supernatural” in which Wiccans believe and with which we interact consists of harnessing energy for healing or Magickal workings, accessing intuitive or psychic guidance, interacting with Spirit Guides or Animal Totems or even the Deities and Ancestors. Even the enigmatic “Magick” associated with Wiccans and Witches is not a special gift reserved for winners of some supernatural lottery. Magick is the art and science of directing will and intent to manifest desires in the mundane. Just as praying is accessing Divine assistance in co-creating an outcome (protection, healing etc.), so too is Magick the practice of combining Divine, elemental, and other natural and spiritual forces to help orchestrate a specific result.  The practice of accessing intuitive guidance or working with Spiritual Guides and helpers is also not too far removed from the practice of asking intervention of saints and angels in other belief systems. In fact, to Wiccans, accessing assistance from the Divine or Spirit Guides is parallel to calling tech support when experiencing a computer problem. It is not a special privilege, as all you need is a phone and the number to access this guidance. So too with “supernatural” assistance, it is simply a matter of awareness and cultivation of the practice of interacting with spirits, the “higher self," and/or the Divine. 

Join in the discussion!  What does this principle mean to you?

Angela Kaufman is the coauthor of Wicca: What’s the Real Deal? Breaking Through the Misconceptions, along with Dayna Winters, and Patricia Gardner.  You can find out more about the book at:

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