5 Most Common Questions to Ask a Witch
No Such Thing as a Silly Question
For the most part, I take the stance that there is no such thing as a silly question. People can ask me anything, and I will attempt to answer to the best of my ability, but it helps to know the answer. Sometimes people have a sincere interest in something but are too timid to speak up, and sometimes they fear being met with derision—that is no way to encourage dialogue.
In that spirit, here are the top five questions I have been asked along with the answers. Please note that these are my own thoughts and are not universal or true for all Witches. I try to clarify this by saying “most” or “many” Witches before a statement, but that isn’t always possible. That being said, this article is for all of those who have wanted to ask a Witch but didn’t get the chance to.
Pull up a chair and sit a spell—the tea is on!
5 Common Questions About Witchcraft
- Do you worship the devil? Do you worship nature?
- Do you put spells on people?
- Do you dance naked under the moon?
- What does your pentacle mean? Is it an evil symbol?
- Do you sacrifice animals?
1. Do You Worship the Devil?
No—just, no. Witches do not believe in that particular entity. As Sandra Bullock’s character, Sally, stated in Practical Magic, “There is no devil in the craft.” In fact, many Witches will tell you that they don’t actually worship their deities. Instead, Witches simply have a relationship with them. It is similar to having a very wise friend that you can talk to and work with towards a goal.
The devil is from another pantheon entirely. Unless you work within the framework of that pantheon, then the devil has no bearing. Asking a Witch if they worship the devil is like asking a Baptist if they worship Apollo—it doesn’t apply. For those who claim that the devil disguises himself as other beings—again, no. This is like telling a Baptist that Apollo is disguising himself as their god to deceive the Baptist religion. I will also state that I am simply using Apollo as an illustration. I am not, I repeat, not equating him with any being known as the devil.
Follow up Question: Do You Worship Nature?
Witches, indeed, and most Pagans, have a strong kinship with nature. We believe that we are connected to all things. Nature follows a rhythm; it awakens, it thrives, it produces, it readies itself for sleep, and it goes dormant. As stated above, Witches do not quite worship nature, but rather, we work in harmony with other energies. Nature provides a model for us to observe. It also allows us to follow a rhythm of our own as we take time to plant seeds (actual crops or ideas, for instance), nurture, tend, and harvest. A Witch’s relationship with nature is often very respectful, sacred, and caring. But no, we do not worship nature.
2. Do You Put Spells on People?
The perception of spells that are portrayed by movies and TV is entirely different from what a practicing Witch truly achieves. Many Witches strongly believe that it is wrong to do anything to another person without consent, including healing. Free will is essential to most Witches as is personal responsibility. Therefore, no—Witches do not go around putting spells on people. I would never cast, for example, a love spell on a specific person. If someone asked me to do so, I would explain to them why it is a misguided idea.
Instead of casting a love spell, the better idea is to set an intention and work with energy to be more compassionate and loving towards yourself. When we love ourselves and are confident, it tends to attract love to us. I would also explain to an individual requesting a love spell that it would be best if they did this for themselves, and I’d offer to show them how.
Now, about spells—they won’t change your eye color, nor will they give your enemies warts or turn them into newts. Spells, very basically, are a manipulation of energy to attract a desired goal or outcome. Spells will attract the energy that you are sending out, so it is in the best interest of the Witch to put out positive energy. Some Witches believe in “The Law of Three” (that whatever you put out comes back three times stronger) and some don’t. But most can agree that the energy has to go somewhere. Therefore, witches are very precise with spellwork and mindful of possible outcomes. It is also my experience that the longer someone has been practicing, the fewer spells they actually cast.
3. Do You Dance Naked Under the Full Moon?
This question usually gets a disappointed look when I explain that most Witches do not practice skyclad, a religious type of nudity. Some Witches may practice skyclad, of course, but most of the Witches I have come across do not. The concept of skyclad originated from the father of modern Wicca, Gerald Gardner.
Now, I must point out that being a Witch does not automatically mean that one is a Wiccan. Think of it as two different spokes of the umbrella of Paganism; some Witches are Wiccan, but not every Witch is a Wiccan.
Back to Gerald Gardner. Gerald is credited with being the founder of Wicca, and he was also a naturalist and a nudist. So, it is understandable that he would bring nudity into his spiritual practice. I should also remind you that a large number of practicing Witches hail from colder climates. Think about it—yeah, exactly, not fun to freeze certain parts of your anatomy. To sum it all up, practicing nudity in Witchcraft is a personal choice.
Are Witchcraft and Wicca the Same Thing?
Being a Witch does not automatically mean that one is a Wiccan. Think of it as two different spokes of the umbrella of Paganism; some Witches are Wiccan, but not every Witch is a Wiccan.
4. What Does Your Pentacle Mean? Is It an Evil Symbol?
The pentacle is a very old symbol. The Christians used the pentacle, and in the 1500s, it was illustrated on knights' shields (such as in the case of Sir Gawain). It wasn’t until very recently that the pentacle or pentagram (a pentacle is a pentagram surrounded by a circle, a pentagram is the five-pointed star itself) was associated with “evil.”
It is believed that occultists of the 19th century began using the ancient symbol and inverted it to denote Baphomet, the goat-headed god. The symbol was also adopted and inverted by early Satanists (no, not devil worshipers—there is a distinction, but that is for another conversation). Eventually, the pentacle became associated with the occult and therefore deemed “evil” by the church.
Today, the pentacle is a federally recognized religious symbol for the military and can be placed on military graves. The points on the pentacle symbolize the elements: Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Spirit (Spirit being the topmost point). The circle of a pentacle denotes unity. There are some who say that having Spirit pointed up, or at the highest point, is the correct way. Some say that if Spirit is at the lowest point, that it signifies an imbalance. Wiccans may use an inverted pentacle to show their level of initiation. I wear my pentacle with Spirit pointed up, which is how it is most commonly worn.
The pentacle I have is fairly small. I wear it because it is a sacred symbol to me, not for shock value or effect. If someone is offended by it, they should understand that the symbol is very meaningful to me. I would never presume to be offended by someone else’s religious symbol, and I would never, ever tell them to remove it. That would be rude and arrogant of me, wouldn’t it?
5. Do You Sacrifice Animals?
No Witch that I know or know of sacrifices animals. Again, many Witches (Wiccan or not) follow the Wiccan ideology of “Harm None” as best they can. It sounds simple, but it may be hard for some Witches to stick to their word. However, most modern Witches do not feel that it is right to take the life of a living being because we desire something or because we wish to curry favor with a deity. Sacrifice means that you personally give something up—not that you take it from an innocent party. Most Witches do not feel that our deities wish for such a thing.
Offerings are appreciated but usually take the form of flowers, libation, or something similar (as if you were giving a gift to a friend). Normal friends, I hope, do not require a blood sacrifice to keep them happy. If so, you may be hanging with the wrong crowd. Most Witches love animals, and many are involved in rescue work or helping animals in some other way.
To Wrap It All Up
There are, of course, many more questions involving Witchcraft, but unfortunately, they will have to wait for another time. I have tried to answer your questions as honestly and as clearly as I could. Things that seem mysterious can also seem scary. It is my pleasure to help demystify some of these things. Hopefully, you come back to revisit me for another chat and some more tea. Blessings on your path, whatever it may be.