Wiccan groups still practicing ritual secrecy hold the initiation ceremony for the new practitioners. Sometimes this is not one rite but several ceremonies, since many groups perform three successive rites to initiate a new member. Anyone entering such a group should undergo the established initiation, part of which consists of swearing never to reveal the secrets of the coven. This makes sense in order to protect the group and is an unavoidable ingredient of many coven initiations. But it is not the essence of initiation.
Many people believe that the only way to practice Wicca is after undergoing a ceremony of initiation within a coven. Wicca has been a closed religion, but not anymore. The inner components of Wicca are available to anyone who can read and understand the material.
Initiation is not just a ritual performed by one human upon another. Even if you accept the concept that the initiator is suffused with deity during the ceremony, it is still a rite. Actually, initiation is the process of the individual’s attunement with the God and the Goddess. This process and be gradual or it can be immediate.
Ritual initiation is only an outer form. True initiation can take place weeks or even months later, or maybe prior to, the physical ritual. Wiccan initiation could even occur years before the student contacts a coven or an instructor.
Surprisingly for some, it is possible to experience Wiccan initiation without meeting another person involved in the religion. As a matter of fact, you may be a Wiccan and be unaware of it.
Your life may gradually shift in focus until you realize that you pay attention to the flowers and clouds. You may gaze at the full moon and talk to plants and animals. Or you may change as the seasons change, adapting your physical energy to match the energy of the natural world that surrounds you. You may perform rituals before noticing what you are actually doing!
When your relationship with deity is strong, when you have gathered your tools and performed magic out of joy, you can rightly call yourself Wiccan. If you wish to stretch yourself further, you can search for an instructor or a coven. But this is not compulsory.
If you never find an instructor or a coven, you will still have the satisfaction of knowing that you have worked the magic, communicated with the Goddess and the God and reaffirmed your commitment to the Earth for spiritual evolvement. You did not sit around waiting for the Wiccan mysteries to fall into your lap. You will have transmuted the absence of physical initiation into a positive stimulus to change your life and your limiting beliefs for the better.
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