Some visitors may wonder exactly what I mean when I refer to myself as a “solitary eclectic Wiccan.”
Taking each word in turn, solitary means I practice my religion as an individual, rather than as a member of a larger organization. Think of a Christian who, instead of going to church every Sunday, prays and worships privately without supervision or audience.
I hold the conviction that as a child of the Divine, I have the ability to connect and commune with the Divine without having to go through a priest or other spiritual “guru.” As such, I worship at the times and in the places I choose. This may be a corner of my home I’ve designated as sacred space, in my back yard, or any other place of my choosing.
Eclectic means the dogma of my religion (for lack of a better term) has been shaped and molded by numerous other traditions. In my case, I incorporate various elements from the pre-Christian religions of Europe and the Americas into my own. One may ask, “How do you know if what you choose is right or not?” The answer is simply by using discernment.
Discernment is something we struggle with as a society. Many of us are content simply being told what to do by government, big business, and/or religious organizations, and as a result our powers of discernment have atrophied from lack of use. One doesn’t need to look very far to see examples of the damage this moral and intellectual laziness has caused. You and I are fully capable of deciding what is right for us individually. Quick on the heels of this recognition should be the wisdom says, “My way is my own, and it is not appropriate to tell others they are wrong for choosing differently.”
Defining Wicca in its entirety is beyond the scope of this post. But according to Wiccan author Edain McCoy,
…Wicca has become a term generally used to refer to many of the Pagan traditions from western and northern Europe.
So then, what does Pagan mean? According to McCoy,
Pagan is a generic term for anyone who practices an earth or nature religion.
What is an “earth or nature religion?”
Generally speaking, a religion that operates on the basic premises that (a) all things are interconnected – that the earth is sacred, rather than simply a storehouse of resources to be exploited at humankind’s whim; and (b) every being has the freedom of choice and is solely responsible for the positive and negative consequences of those choices.