Attitudes to witches

minnow at minnow at
Sat Mar 6 13:41:18 EST 2004

Sallyo wrote:

>> Not only could he find none, he could find nothing
>> indicating that there had ever anywhere been worship
>> of what we might call "The Goddess", a female Yahweh
>> equivalent, a monotheistic system in which the One
>> God was female.  As far as he could make out, this
>> idea didn't exist before about 1899,
>Gerald Gardner "invented" the modern wicca... sort of.

He certainly wrote "The Charge of the Goddess", which many Wiccan groups
hold by like anything.  He and Doreen Valiente, with bits lifted from
Leland's *Aradia*.  Which has now been recognised as a hoax, I think.  So
yes, I'd go along with it having been invented.  If it works, though, I
don't see that as being particularly a flaw.  I've known people who were
helped out of the pit they had dug for themselves by the Guru Maharaji's
ashram system -- it was a bit trying the way they dived into sheets and
pulled them up over their heads whenever they felt a bit fraught, but if it
helped them, does it matter?

On the other hand, most of the Wiccans I have encountered have quietly
dropped some of Gardner's more, um, flagellation-oriented ideas.

>> M'yes.  Trevor-Roper argues that it is almost
>> impossible for a ruler to cause pogroms or suchlike
>> unless they also have the support of the generality of
>> the people.  It's only after the whole thing has got
>> completely out of hand that the hundreds and thousands
>> of small folk who didn't say much in public sneak away
>> home and leave the ones who were the figureheads to
>> carry the blame for the appalling results.
>Reminds me of the Princess Di thing. The paparezzi (sp?) got a lot of flack,
>but if no one bought magazines or papers that had "stolen" photos, then the
>pizza-men would be out of business.  Maybe if the celebs stopped running and
>posed with a smile then that might help too?


If "ifs" and "ans" were pots and pans, we'd have no need of tinkers.

If the nameless newspaper that whipped up the residents of a housing estate
into a frenzy against paedophiles hadn't done so, the paediatrician who
lived there might not have been attacked by a mob who couldn't tell the
difference between the two long words beginning with "pae".

Mobs are bad news, almost always.  More than six legs and no brain, even
more than the average committee.  People who set them up on purpose and try
to direct them are even worse news, because they don't even have the excuse
of being overtaken by their emotions: they are coldly calculating how to
make the most of the mob.



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