How Balanced is Your Faith?

by Gwen Wolfrose

The negative pull of magnetism keeps us from floating off this earth.

However, embracing the dark has not really anything to do with anything negative. If you look at the wheel of the year you see that basically there are two sides (each with two sides). They are Summer (Light/Life) and Winter (Dark/Death).

Summer starts with youth (spring) and is the beginning of life, time to plant the seeds of life and we celebrate it as such. Beltain is a fertility festival where we celebrate the union of the God and Goddess so *gasp* itís true Paganís also acknowledge sex. Even the may pole is a phallic symbol.

At midsummer we celebrate light and we see how full and beautiful Mother Earth has become with the seeds of life and we know that soon it will begin to fade. When we get to the fall festivals they are harvest celebrations and we reap the bounty of Mother Earth to sustain us through the Winter.

Winter starts with Samhain which is very much a celebration of death to await renewal. We honor the Wise Crone during the dark time of Winter. It is a celebration of reincarnation. At Yule, being the opposite of midsummer, we see death and know that life will soon return. Death is not an end but rather a transition. So essentially embracing darkness/death is a celebration of light/life. It is at the core of any earth based religion especially Wicca.

In some traditions of witchcraft Samhain is when the God has dominion and he gives it back to the Goddess at Beltane. The Horned One is therefore the Lord of Death.

Witch?
Yes, Iím a witch. Iíve stood before
The Lord of Death and found him not unkind.
Iíve practiced well the sacred hidden lore
The words of power and the spells that bind
And loosen; culled from natureís trove
The herbs that heal - But most of all have I
Danced naked, free and proud beneath the sky
Unto the Goddess, She who shines above.

Witch?
Yes, Iím a witch for I am free
From hope of Heaven and the fear of Hell.
No solemn vale of tears is this to me.
Earth is my cup of joy. I love her well.
Seek not to turn me from my destined fate.
Earth is enough for me, and if I burn
I shall not leave her but to earth return
To live again a witch ó Re-in-carnate.

For ítis our promise and our firm belief
That She who loves us brings us back again
As seeds once buried rise again in leaf,
Stem, branch and blossom in the Summer rain.
And are we less than seeds? But should it be
That one life only was our metered span
And Power comes but once to any man
Iíll live it lusty, joyfully and free
And be a Witch!

Author ó Sea, of the Gardnerian Coven of Deepstar -October 27, 1971

I have this poem published on one of my websites. One day I had found that someone referanced my site and this poem as proof that pagans worship satan. I naturally posted my bewilderment of the matter to a pagan discussion list I enjoy. I was litterally taken aback by one response I recieved.

ďDo you really think this is a Ďgoodí example of Pagan poetry? Ö Ö Forgive if I seem rude. But think of yourself as a Born again Christian and then look at this poem again.Ē

As a matter of fact, I do think this is a good example of Pagan poetry!

I also think this sums Wicca based paganism up pretty well. For me, it is a kind of reaffirmation and I do sometimes recite it under the light of a full moon as such.

I am Gwendalyn Wolfrose of the Wicca, I was initiated about 17 years ago and I will never deny my roots. I worship a horned god, I do not pay him word of mouth and then move on. I embrace darkness and fear as much as I do love and light. I am very comfortable in my old pagan shoes and I chose not to hide them or disguise them to be accepted by the so called mainstream.

I wont redefine my religion so that it doesnít appear to offend some born again Christian who has their mind made up no matter what. I wouldnít be a true follower of my faith, I would be a hypocrite going through the motions. Quite frankly, I canít look at myself as a born again Christian and view how my faith looks from that perspective. Why would I do my faith such an injustice as to worry about how the small minded minority sees it?

The poem above as you can see from the date was written just before Samhain. Samhain is a celebration/acknowledgment of the ending cycle or death. The wheel of life is at the core of paganism and I love every aspect of it. I donít fear death because I hold strongly to my faith and that includes reincarnation. My lord is the Lord of Death as well as life and I embrace that whole hearted and proudly do I proclaim it.

You may look through my eyes, or walk in my shoes, judge me not, for I do not walk my path to suit youÖ