I’ve been drawn to the word “Witch” for as long as I can remember.
I also remember having some big feelings about the negative connotation attached to the word “Witch” and how that always felt incorrect/closed-minded/mean/unfair. I didn’t like it that witches always got such a bad “rap.”
So, the past few months, as I’ve been on my faith journey, I’ve begun leaning into the word that has had such a pull on me.
And I’d like to share the meaning I’ve found, in hopes maybe it will bring a greater understanding for someone who may be ready for a broader view. (And if you’re not into it or ready for a broader view that’s ok too! All I ask is that you are respectful of my thoughts here if you continue to read on).
A Witch is someone who knows her Essential Divine Nature is a Child of the Heavens...and I believe the Heavens were created by Heavenly Parents. Which means this connects directly with a major line of thought from my upbringing as a Mormon: I have a Divine Nature.
I honor that Divinity inside of me and all living things. Because of this Divinity, I believe I am capable of receiving and carrying out “revelation” for myself. This can come through prayer, meditation, contemplation, visions…you name it.
I value personal power, intuition and self-expression. Practicing my spirituality is a way and tool for me to strive to be the best version of myself, to honor the Sacred.
Being a Witch means embracing rituals and ceremonies that bring me closer to my Divine Nature. It means recognizing the spirituality and yes, magic, in all the world around me, and recognizing that this spirituality and magic was given as a gift to me from God/The Universe/the Divine/your Higher Power/whatever you’d like to call it. (And I think what you call it is totally fine and personal and whatever is best for you.)
Being a Witch means embracing and celebrating womanhood and nature. It means paying close attention to and embracing the intuitive knowing that I have been taught to listen closely to my whole life as a Mormon, aka, the Holy Spirit/Holy Ghost.
I can directly link many things I’ve learned throughout my entire life as a Mormon to Witchery, and seeing these connections has helped me as I’ve navigated this new path.
I think about all the sacred ceremonies and rituals we perform as Mormons at church and in the Temple.
I think about taking the Sacrament each week to remember covenants we’ve made.
I think about Baptism, when we choose to make a sacred covenant with God, blessings given to heal the sick, father’s blessings, naming and blessing of infants, Priesthood blessings, Temple dedications, setting apart for callings, giving of the Gift of the Holy Ghost.
Things like creating sacred space within homes, chapels (think setting up a table nicely before a lesson to serve as a focal point for the teaching), temples, and even mapping sacred spaces onto natural and man-made geographical features (the Hill Cumorah anyone?).
All of these are connected to the magic and spirituality I’ve come to know as Witchcraft.
Furthermore, this year as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we are studying the Doctrine and Covenants and I am seeing so many connections between the magical aspects of spirituality and how the LDS church came to be (seer stones and visions anyone?)…and how that ALSO aligns with my ancestral magical roots (Scotland, Ireland and the Northern Germanic regions). It’s actually been pretty cool to see the connections!
One thing that has been incredibly important for me on this journey is recognizing that I don’t need to wait for an intermediary to make a decision or to know what is right for me or my family. It means I can trust myself to know what is true and right for me. This is a vital piece of Witchcraft, owning your power.
“Witch” isn’t a bad word. It doesn’t equal Satan or the Devil. It’s not a scary woman dressed in black, doing spells and curses (though there are some who practice that way, to each their own!) The negative imagery and thought surrounding the word is a label history, religion and much of the general media has created. And just like many other labels created by history, religion and the general media…it’s not helpful, it’s harmful.
This brings to mind the question: “Hey Emily, if there are so many connections and similarities between Mormonism and Witchery for you, why even call yourself a Witch?”
Good question, and one I’ve contemplated a lot…and am still contemplating.
The answer I’ve come up with so far: Because there are large pieces of my connection to the Divine missing if I don’t honor the Witch within me. There are things my Mormon culture doesn’t embrace or encourage that I NEED in order to become my best and highest self. Witchcraft is a lens that makes my spirituality and connection to the Divine bigger, brighter and better.
Which brings me my final two thoughts:
-Is there more than one way to have a relationship with the Divine?
-Does it have to be either/or?
-Yes: there is WAY more than one way to have a relationship with the Divine.
-No: it does not have to be either/or (it’s not: I’m either Mormon or a Witch) it can be both/and (I’m both a Mormon AND a Witch)
Being a Mormon Witch means being in tune with the rituals of my spirituality, being in tune with my higher power and the Divine, being in tune with the world around me that was given to me by my Creator. It means tending to my garden, inviting beautiful energy into my home, lighting candles, saying prayers, meditating, paying attention to the Moon and the Planets and how they affect my life, offering the same respect and love to animals and all creatures that I do to people, using Tarot cards and Oracle cards to connect better to my subconscious and assist me in making decisions…and just being all around the wonderful woman I am. And finally, it means recognizing that while others may not agree that witchcraft has a strong relationship with Mormonism (and Christianity as a whole,) it doesn’t matter.
So….while I try not to let it bother me or make a difference in my spiritual practice, I’d be lying if I didn’t say there was a part of me that just wanted people to understand where I’m coming from here and not judge me for saying “I’m a Witch. And a Mormon. So maybe that makes me a Mormon Witch. And being able to have a personal spiritual practice that is soul-affirming and wonderful to me is not only ok, it’s amazing.”