The craft and paganism can be very personal for some and a way to honor one’s ancestors and traditions. Many witches and pagans today incorporate family and cultural traditions, as well as traditions outside of their ethnic or cultural backgrounds. However, there are some important things to remember as you find your path.
Is it a closed religion/tradition?
Closed religions and traditions are associated with specific ethnic groups and have deep meaning to those people. They relive the experiences of their ancestors through the stories and rituals that have been passed down through generations. So it is best to say away unless, in rare instances, you are invited in. If there are aspects that you feel resonates with you, then see if there is a similar practice within your own heritage. You may be yearning for something that is familiar so research the religions and traditions of your ancestors. Try to connect with their spirits and incorporate their beliefs into your path. Doing so will allow you to feel more fulfilled, grounded, and connected on your spiritual path.
Do you profit from it?
Avoid selling items from closed traditions. Profiting from a closed practice is unethical and harmful to that group of people. The sacred items that are used have a deep history that means things that outsiders cannot understand. In some ways, it is also a part of the people and by selling these objects you are disrespecting the group and giving away parts of them without their consent. Think about it from their perspective and how it would make you feel to have your culture picked apart and sold. They should have a voice on how or when they want to share their items. And, if they do sell any items, support them by buying directly from their shops.
Are you honoring the tradition?
If the tradition is one that you feel calls to you, and it isn’t closed, then try to follow it as it is meant to be followed. Observe its sacred days, give offerings, etc. Research as much as you can and get in contact with its leaders and seek wisdom and guidance from the elders within that community. If there is a place of worship visit whenever you can. Observe how they worship and try to understand on a spiritual level what each ceremony or rite means. Don’t be afraid to immerse yourself in learning and being a beginner.
What are you doing to give back?
Think of ways to give back. You are using traditions and teachings that may go back thousands of years and have benefited countless people. Now, you are benefitting from it spiritually and giving back in whatever way you can is a great way to show honor and respect towards the tradition.
Part of my practice incorporates Buddhism so I visit Buddhist temples whenever I travel and support the local temple. I give offerings, prayers, and only buy my prayer beads through them.
Your Pagan or Witchpath is a personal journey. It can comprise many traditions and schools of thought, but above all, be mindful. Be mindful of how your path impacts others and connect with your spirit guides, teachers, or any person or light being that can help direct your path. You are on a spiritual journey and if you keep your mind open to truth, you will find it )0(