Were you raised in a different religious tradition?
What's the wackiest thing you believe in?
I think, like many other witches, that I was always a witch, but I didn't realize it until I was in my early 30s.
I was raised Catholic (went to Catholic school, taught CCD Communion classes, the whole nine yards) and left the church as soon as I left my parents' house. I hated the church's stand on women, hated the church's wealth in the face of worldwide poverty, hated the church's stance on abortion. For all of my 20s, I would probably have called myself agnostic, but that was because I didn't know a word to describe the notion that Nature, herself, was divine. I was a v. young single mother, struggling to work and raise my son in a v. rural area, and I simply missed the Pagan revival of the sixties and seventies. This was, remember, pre-internet.
In my early 30s, I picked up a copy of "The Politics of Women's Spirituality" by Charlene Spretnak, mostly out of curiosity that anyone would have studied the connection between the two. I can still remember the morning that I started reading, and reading, and reading, the excitement growing with every single page. At last, there were not only words to describe what I felt, but, apparently, an entire group of people who felt the same things. Luckily, that book mentioned other books which, worried though I was about the local librarian gossiping about the school teacher's odd reading habits, I began to read on inter-library loan. This was, remember, pre-Amazon.com. Those books had bibliographies, and, within a few months, I'd read every single staple of Paganism and quite a few pieces of dreck. I practiced as a solitary for years, until, in my early 40s, I moved to Washington, DC and met the wonderful circle of women with whom I still practice.
I believe in some pretty whacky things, I guess, although, for me, being a witch doesn't involve believing in anything. It involves experience. Thus, I don't believe in the Goddesses and Gods; I experience them. I don't believe in magic; I experience it. I don't believe in the ability of our Higher Self to communicate with us through Tarot: I experience it. If I couldn't experience it, I wouldn't take it on faith. Faith, IMHO, is for xians. Most people would find whacky my complete assurance that everything, everything, is connected. You, me, rocks, rivers, trees, atoms, stars, our ancestors, sunlight, death, ancient knowledge, everything. But, to me, it's not whacky at all. It's what I always knew and discovering Wicca gave me words for it.
I'm a woman, a Witch, a mother, a grandmother, an eco-feminist, a gardener, a reader, a writer, and a priestess of the Great Mother Earth. Hecate appears in the
Homeric Ode to Demeter, which tells of Hades who caught Persophone
"up reluctant on his golden car and bare her away lamenting. . . . But no one, either of the deathless gods or of mortal men, heard her voice, nor yet the olive-trees bearing rich fruit: only tenderhearted Hecate, bright-coiffed, the daughter of Persaeus, heard the girl from her cave . . . ."