Next Generation Witchcraft

A recent blog post by Witchy_Girl got me to thinking about elder witches and younger witches and what we as elders are doing to aid the next generation in learning, growing, and becoming.

Unfortunately, in many cases, the answer is not a lot. As Witchy Girl explains in a recent blog post,

…these days, there are more older witches than there are younger ones. It’s irritating, because you feel that the older witches, although they mean well, seem to be talking down on you, making you feel that you’re not practicing witchcraft or being Wiccan enough.

In a day when every man and his sister has written a book about Paganism, witchcraft, Wicca, and the like personal learning and knowledge has waned. Oh, I know. I can hear the chatter in the back row.

  • I didn’t have books or anyone to teach me, I had to figure it out for myself.
  • Young people today just want knowledge handed to them, they don’t want to do the work

No, there weren’t as many books 30 years ago.

No, access to the largest library in the world was not at nearly every household’s finger tips 20 years ago

Yes, it was harder to find information 15 years ago.

"Magic Circle" by John William Water...

"Magic Circle" by John William Waterhouse, 1886 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Does this mean that when we find a youngling witch who is truly seeking guidance we should direct them to the internet or a book?

Consider the thrill you first felt when you finally found that one person who could Teach you! Who could tell you that you weren’t strange, or alone. Today, you are that person, and someone out there in this great big community that we call the World is seeking you as their teacher.

Will you be there?


6 thoughts on “Next Generation Witchcraft

  1. Hello! Thanks for mentioning me and highlighting this important issue! I’ve had to teach myself about my faith through books and online, so does this make me a bad witch? I was even told by an older Wiccan that all the books I was reading were black magic and that I should get rid of them! But, in this day and age, is there anything else I can do?

    • No, it doesn’t make you a bad witch at all. Like many who have come before you, you have made do with what you have on hand. When I first discovered witchcraft it meant trips to the public library and hoping the books on Paganism and witchcraft hadn’t been permanently checked out by well meaning folk hoping to shield people from the evils of both.

      All books are black magic? What a load of rubbish!! I will give you, there is a lot of crap which has been written, but even the worst can have a gem of wisdom in it if you’re willing to search for it.

      Teaching covens exist. Those are the ones which are most likely to be open, less hidden.

      I wish I had more answers for you.

  2. We’ve had more trouble with the “middle” generation. They’ve been reshaping our tradition in the way they want and have cut out the elders. I find it fascinating that we have a lot of elders out there who are still willing to teach, but no one wants them to. (Of course, a lot of people in BS seem pretty crazy as well…*sigh*) I think people who are able to find good teachers are extremely lucky. My S.O. and I argue a lot about the fact that he thinks you HAVE to have a teacher and a tradition, but I grew up in middle of nowhere Ohio. In a five mile radius, there were twenty five churches. How many witches does he think were hiding in the shrubbery? (A few, but that came later when it was me and the pirates). Books and intuition were about the only way to go. I was lucky in that my teachers have shown up along the way. And while I do think there are things you shouldn’t be doing if you’ve learned them from books, most people don’t have the luxury of anything other than books. We live in an age were people still refuse to publicly be witches for fear of how society will react, most people don’t announce that they’re a witch who wants to teach. How will the next generation learn if they don’t take advantage of all of the wonderful resources that are available now (books, internet, social networking…) that was not available even twenty years ago?

    • I ran into the same thing growing up in Kansas. I didn’t know there was an option in regards to religion beyond Baptist or Methodist (and as I was raised Methodist, I grew up “knowing” that those Baptists were a bit suspect) until I was about 10 years of age. I didn’t hear of Paganism as an option until 1991, when I was well into my 20s. In the Middle America world I grew up in, your choices were Christian denomination or Atheist, there were no other options.

I enjoy reading your responses, so please let me know what you think.

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