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Queer wicca/witchraft?

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Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby Bruhdelaire » Tue May 21, 2019 3:15 pm

Hi all!

I bring today a topic which is very close to my heart, and it is something I pondered bringing for a long time (I also first thought about putting this under "Gods/Goddesses" so apologies if it would have been better there!)

We mostly know that Paganism work under a generalisation of binary couples. We have our Gods and Goddesses, Sun and Moon, and Elements/Cardinal points that work well with and against each other - amongst many other associations. The main idea is that there is balance, there is union in everything we see, from nature to spiritual signs of all kind.

I was recently listening to the great podcast "3 Pagans and a Cat" - which I an only recommend! And they brought up the question of queerdom and non gender conforming identities to pagan circles. One mention was about the Gods and Goddesses and the inherent female/male nature of the worship - for those who worship or work with Godly Beings.

I did believe myself that even if I am working with let's say, a female deity - or one worshipped as a woman - it doesn't mean that the energy she brings in only female. And vice versa. Most mythologies include bits about cross dressing and gender fluidity and it does not sounds like a stretch to say that these themes are brought from the Gods' energies rather than just human nature.

There is also paths that only work with a female/a male energy and reject, if not "ignore" the opposite energy. And some that just do not follow any gender idea.

What is you own take on it? As a queer woman - and a femme woman - gender identity and interpretation is something that is not only weaved into my daily life, but also something that I keep finding in my practice. It seems that I attract different identities and performance of gendered energies, and icons of birth/death and transformation. This "queerness" of life in witchcraft is not really widely discussed to my knowledge? But I find that many of those working with magick are not conforming to the binaries our craft usually dictates.

I thought it would be interesting to see different opinions/views on this! Especially because this forum has such a wide range of beliefs and practice and I can't wait to see what people think about this topic :fairy:
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Re: Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby Silas Nightfall » Tue May 21, 2019 4:13 pm

I believe you’re overthinking this. The God and Goddess are part of the One. Just like you and me. We all have masculine and feminine influence in our lives, good or bad, and we internalize them. We are all both masculine and feminine. Some just show one aspect more than another, or balanced, or some other range. There is a place for ALL in Wicca without the need for further rationale. It doesn’t matter if someone is LGBTQ+ or not.

In addition, it my belief that the god and goddess are not external deities as in other religions. They both, together, are us. For me, Wicca is a celebration of the self, humanity and nature. Since you exist, you are part it all automatically. Celebrate yourself in whatever capacity and balance you present.


I hope that helps.
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Re: Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby Siona » Tue May 21, 2019 5:22 pm

Bruhdelaire wrote:We mostly know that Paganism work under a generalisation of binary couples. We have our Gods and Goddesses, Sun and Moon, and Elements/Cardinal points that work well with and against each other - amongst many other associations. The main idea is that there is balance, there is union in everything we see, from nature to spiritual signs of all kind.


Ancient paganism really didn't often have such a focus on worship of binary couples as modern Wicca and some other modern pagan groups do. Not that it didn't exist at all, worship of a male-female pair, just that it was one aspect out of many focuses that existed. I mean, there were many male-female deity pairs who were married, but they were not always worshiped together in every ritual. Like, Zeus and Hera, they had their own separate temples, rites, holidays etc, to be done.

Triads were a big thing in many cultures. Egypt had many mother, father, child triads. Or people worshiped single deities. A pair of deities both female, or both male. A group of deities with a particular focus (the mysteries of Demeter, with Persephone, Hekate, and other deities, all worshiped together). There was sun and moon, but also stars, planets, and of course earthly additions - the sea, land, sky triad that is popular. The three worlds, lower, middle, upper (or, nine worlds), and so on. There are deities that are queer (Apollo comes to mind, he had a lot of lovers, and some were men). There are deities that are neither or both male/female, such as the Greek creator deity, Phanes.

In practicing my own, non-Wiccan solitary path, it's been pretty freeing to cut out a lot of aspects of modern witchcraft that are popular with others, but just don't work for me. Some traditions divide everything down masculine and feminine lines. It works for some people. It doesn't work for me. I just... don't see the point in it. So? I just don't do it. There are some traditions out there that don't ever focus on anything other than a male-female deity pairing. Again, works for a lot of people. But, for some of us, it gets tiring never seeing our own love and relationships represented on the more cosmic scale. When I look at symbolism, instead of say focusing on sun/moon light/dark, etc, I tend to look more to triads, or groups of six.

This isn't a knock on Wicca, but there's much more to witchcraft and paganism than what's found within Wicca. (And, frankly, there is more to Wicca that what most books on Wicca include...) Wicca is just one tradition out of many. Works for a lot of people, again, not knocking it, but digging into other traditions that are out there, there's a ton of symbolism in many different forms that one can work with.
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Re: Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby Lady_Lilith » Tue May 21, 2019 8:47 pm

I like Silas's view. It's funny because I just wrote this article, released today on Wicca & Binary. I also have one on Lilith: Queer Icon.

In ancient paganism people varied as Siona stated. Sometimes people did worship couples, male/female etc... sometimes they did not or it never mattered. It's all a matter of perspective. :)

Btw I am a Queer person and my personal practice is Pan-Dianic which is inclusive and not founded by Budapest. You'll find me blog about it a lot as a queer person myself. (I also blog a lot about Lilith from a more general pagan perspective. )
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Re: Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby SpiritTalker » Wed May 22, 2019 7:06 am

I think in terms of an electric universe & polarity. Energy is both (-) and (+) at the same time & only observable from the pendulum-like swing of the arc in motion. For discussion we can freeze-frame any position but energy isn't stationary. Gender nuances represent Nature's swing of the pendulum but it's all one.
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Re: Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby Mordinna86 » Wed May 22, 2019 1:42 pm

Well, the world is spherical, and so are our minds and senses really, like living in a bubble, so every perspective is valid, anything technically possible.

Traditional male and female are like yin and yang, fire and ice, black and white like the two sides of a chessboard, or 2 sides of card or coin. I think our ancestors really were too easily fooled by games and absolutes. You can easily argue the sun is more feminine, but then run into difficulties -one set of analogies you've made clash with another. We all channel and rely on a broad combination of energies.

Male and female are just bodies we are born into for mating and relationships, about it really.
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Re: Queer wicca/witchraft?

Postby Siona » Wed May 22, 2019 3:21 pm

Mordinna86 wrote:You can easily argue the sun is more feminine, but then run into difficulties -one set of analogies you've made clash with another.


And that's really what happens when you start to look into multiple different cultures. The sun is feminine in a lot of classical pantheons. Chinese, Baltic, Japanese, Norse/Germanic, Cannanite, Celtic, Finnish, Egyptian, all pantheons with goddesses of the sun. And in those pantheons, the moon is usually associated with gods. Some pantheons had both gods and goddesses associated with the sun - to go back to Egypt, the sun disk itself was Aten, male, and there were many other gods associated with the sun, Ra, Amun, etc. But, Hathor, Isis, Sekhmet, all associated with the sun, as well. The moon was purely male, Iah, Khonsu, Thoth. Until the Greeks showed up and were like, well, hold on, in our pantheon it's the other way around. That's actually why as worship of Isis spread she became associated with the moon, not just the sun, as she began. Most people know her now as a moon goddess, despite her thousands of years as an Egyptian solar deity (as well as deity of the throne, magic, and other things, of course). Even the name Isis comes down to us from the Greeks, where in Egypt it was something more like Aset.

We can also blame the Greeks, in a sense, for the idea of the sun being masculine and moon feminine that is so prevalent in many modern pagan traditions. A lot of that came into paganism because of a big revival and interest in Greek and Roman traditions that was happening around the same time. And, other cultures (such as Egypt) were still being filtered through that lens as well.

We can't really blame our ancestors for the whole focus on absolutes. There were many pantheons with tons of overlapping and conflicting deities, myths, symbolism, and so on. Multiple 'truths' were known and accepted by many. All layers to examine, different ways to view the same thing to gain deeper understanding. There were also traditions then which were more black and white, too, of course, but there was also a lot of variety even within single traditions. Our ancestors might not have always been as fooled as one might think... but much of modern paganism certainly has accepted a lot of duality absolutes, for better or worse.
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