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Patti Wigington

Reader Says Leave Wicca to the White Folks

By June 19, 2012

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Last week, I ran a blog post about the changing racial makeup of modern Paganism, including, but not limited to Wicca. In general, readers were pretty supportive, as I've come to expect from our little community here at About Pagan/Wiccan. Lots of folks stopped by to share their stories, both readers of color and those who felt that skin tone and racial background shouldn't have to play a huge role in one's spiritual identity when one is called by deity.

However, one individual made a comment that I feel needs to be addressed specifically. In my five years as a Guide here at About Pagan/Wiccan, it's been pretty rare that a reader comment has been so offensive that I feel a need to call them out on it. This, my darlings, is one of those occasions.

A reader named Silvia not only feels that Wicca needs to be left to white folks -- because apparently it's all they've got left -- but also, she blames me for the notion that people of other colors might be entitled to believe the same stuff she does. Her comment reads as follows:

This is a very dusappointing(sic) article. Other races have their own pagan traditions. Wicca should be reserved for whites. White people have almost no place where they can come together and experience collective pride for their culture and ancestors. Wicca was one of rare exceptions. Now, thanks to Patti, we don't have even this. I don't see any point to be Wiccan then.

Really? REALLY?

You know, sometimes people in the majority tend to marginalize those who are the minority. White people have no place where they can come together and experience collective pride? Are you kidding? In the United States, white people are the majority - those of us who are white enjoy a privilege that our neighbors and family members who are Not White will never experience.

Silvia, you ever get thrown out of a restaurant for being white? Ever get stopped by a police officer because white folks don't belong in rich neighborhoods? I mean, seriously, I'm as white as they get, and I'm well aware of the fact that I'll never encounter any of the prejudices or bigotry that my non-white friends will.

Also, it's one thing to have a tradition that's inclusive (and many traditions are) versus one that is exclusive. There's a big difference between "inclusive of group A" and "exclusive of group B." Certainly, any group should be able to say "We celebrate XYZ," but that's not the same as saying "None of those other people are allowed to celebrate XYZ like we do." I have extended family members of a variety of ethnic backgrounds and skin colors - and they're all welcome to celebrate in the circle with me any time they like.

Furthermore, I'm sorry, Silvia, that you feel I personally have somehow stripped you of your right to hang out in a religion full of Just White People and Nobody Else. And who's going to be in charge of "reserving" Wicca for white folks? The Wiccan Race Police? Is someone going to throw my friend Kazoo and her family out of ritual for Paganing While Brown?

The good news, Silvia, is you can rest assured that there are plenty of places on the Internet, and in real life, where you can find like-minded people for support and validation. However, this ain't the place.

Don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out.

Edited on 6/27/12: Folks, I'm closing the comments on this thread. While I'm pleased to see so many people who agree that no one gets to dictate other people's beliefs, a lot of these comments are turning into personal attacks on the original poster, rather than discussion of the issue at hand. Thanks to all of you who participated in the conversation.

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Comments
June 19, 2012 at 4:03 pm
(1) eilish says:

I av usualy found dat people who practise wica are more tolernt this lady must not b very sad

June 19, 2012 at 4:10 pm
(2) Kris Bradley says:

*Stands and applauds Patti*

June 19, 2012 at 4:11 pm
(3) Sue says:

WOW! Great response, Patti. I read your posts all the time and really enjoy them. As a black Wiccan, I enjoyed reading the responses to your blog about the racial makeup of modern Paganism. I’ve always felt welcome in any Pagan setting, which is one of the things I love about being Pagan.

June 19, 2012 at 4:13 pm
(4) Star Foster says:

Well said, Patti!

June 19, 2012 at 4:15 pm
(5) Cameo says:

Wow. What a hateful and bigoted thing to say. As a mixed race woman of native American, caribbean and Caucasian descent, I find myself more at home and able to be myself now that I have found Wicca. My little coven is also mixed with white and black people. That lady is just wrong. And by the way, thank you Patti for your articles and vast knowledge that you share with us. It really has given me and all my Wiccan friends a lot of guidance. Blessed Be!

June 19, 2012 at 4:15 pm
(6) Kyrja says:

*stands with Kris Bradley applauding*

June 19, 2012 at 4:19 pm
(7) Carole Ballard says:

I wonder if Sylvia worships, Isis, or Aradia in her traditions, or, Diana or even Kali… with respect, possibly not a white face amongst them!

Isis, is egyptian, obviously, and as such would have dark skin, Aradia, Diana, Italian and Roman respectively so would have more olive skins and Kali? Well, I think the point is made.

Sylvia you should be ashamed of yourself, Wicca, may have been created by a good old English gent, but never did he suggest that it was a path for “dem white folks”.

Wicca opens its arms to all colour, any land. It originated from England, so by YOUR reckoning if your NOT from England, why should YOU be allowed to practice Sylvia?
I am of course being flippant and measuring you on your own judgmental attitude, because you can bet your bottom dollar most of your American brothers and sisters do not think this way.,

You can as a NON British person follow Wicca simply because Wicca does NOT shuts its doors to creed or country, as a Wiccan you should know this.

I myself, came to Wicca because of the judgemental attitudes of another religion who preached love. praise and equality. It proved not to be the case and Wicca was more welcoming and accepting.

Maybe Sylvia? with your attitude, perhaps you should leave it, we don’t want the likes of you, in our wonderful path if your intolerant and racist attitude is going to stink and bring Wicca down.

Feel free, in fact nay, I insist this be sent on to Sylvia.

Yours, in the ALL Loving and ALL accepting Goddess and God

Carole

June 19, 2012 at 4:20 pm
(8) Em Graves says:

Preach sistah, preach!!!

Best line: “Is someone going to throw my friend Kazoo and her family out of ritual for Paganing While Brown?” Aha ha ha ha!! You’re awesome.

It genuinely scares the poo out of me that there are still such hateful-minded people living amongst us [and in our own ranks even!]. This country was founded on the right to be whoever it is you want to be. How can anyone then expect that it would be a country where everyone acted exactly the same?!

I am proud to share my faith with any shape, size, color and exclamation point that wishes to walk this path with me!!

“Paganing While Brown” — aha ha ha ha ha!!

Thanks Patti.
Em

June 19, 2012 at 4:21 pm
(9) Christina says:

Thank you! As a bi-racial Pagan I found your blog about the racial makeup of modern Paganisim interesting. I love being pagan because of the basic respect for everyone as human beings. I guess their response is there’s proof there’s loonies in EVERY RELIGION.

June 19, 2012 at 4:22 pm
(10) Sparrow says:

Thank you Patti. Well done.
I am white from a mixed race family and embrace everyone in my life and faith.
Thank you,
Sparrow
The Wigglian Way

June 19, 2012 at 4:24 pm
(11) Laura says:

Patti, You’re my new hero!!!! Bravo!!!!!

June 19, 2012 at 4:24 pm
(12) undeadbob says:

sounds like she needs to affiliate herself with Christian Identity they are suitably racist to suit her I think

June 19, 2012 at 4:24 pm
(13) JammaBeanz says:

I think she mistook the whole Wicca as a “white-light” concept lol!!

June 19, 2012 at 4:26 pm
(14) Valerie says:

THANK YOU, Patti.

June 19, 2012 at 4:26 pm
(15) Bonnie says:

We are all applauding you Patty, your answer to this narrow minded person was right on. I love your articles and have been reading them since you first started writing them. Thank you for all of the work you do to provide them to all of us.

June 19, 2012 at 4:29 pm
(16) Cathie says:

Wow! Good for you! .. I would have used George Jefferson’s sayin thou.. “Don’t let the door knob hit ya.. where to goddess split ya!” LOL..

June 19, 2012 at 4:30 pm
(17) Erica Abner says:

Wow. Some part of me always knew there were people like this, lurking in the shadows. There are bigots everywhere.

You’re response was wonderful, Patti. For myself, I probably couldn’t have written such a level-headed response… at least, not without writing out and then deleting several much more scathing remarks first. ;)

As for Silvia, I’m sure she can find her sorry little self a group of KKK-inspired pagans with whom to celebrate her whiteness.
(I recall a post on Facebook, with picture of a tattooed neo-nazi cheering himself on, and the caption said something like “What does it way about your life when you’re greatest achievement is being white?”)

Thank you, again, Patti, for the information you provide and the example you set.

Brightest blessings, all!

June 19, 2012 at 4:31 pm
(18) Glyndwer says:

Excellent!

June 19, 2012 at 4:31 pm
(19) picklewalsh says:

Wicca as white heritage???? LOL the religion was invented in the mid 20th century. Alot of the founding material was believed to be written by Crowley who was heavily influenced by Ancient Egyptian writings.

Stupid racist woman… is… well… racist

June 19, 2012 at 4:33 pm
(20) Chrys Davison says:

Good grief, the fact that Sylvia would even come up with that notion is a violation of the Wiccan Rede isn’t it? If not just against the core beliefs of the Wiccan community. Yep you said it alright Patti…”Don’t let the door hit ya on the way out!”

June 19, 2012 at 4:34 pm
(21) Carolyn says:

Patti , I’m so sorry, if nothing else this is one religion that I thought was more open minded then that, its a shame that one person can bring us down to the same low level as the holy rollers . we all have to deal with prejudice due to our choice of beliefs we should not have to deal with exhibiting prejudice form our own people. for all this we might as well all go back to being Christian ( No thanks) she shouldn’t even be calling herself a wiccan for that remark. it should not matter the sex ,color or race of a person so long as they are sticking to the god and goddess rules. this is basically White supremacy talking and we do not need that here.

June 19, 2012 at 4:36 pm
(22) John V. Hedtke says:

I think the only thing I can add is that it’s a wonderful example that stupidity is not limited to mainstream religions. If Silvia’s feeling forlorn and wants to feel better, she’s going to have to find it within, because she’s never going to find it without.

–Tiller

June 19, 2012 at 4:41 pm
(23) Lady SilverVixen says:

The path of Wicca is a wide ranging one. We allow people of all races and creeds, sexual orientations and even those disabled. If this woman really believes that Wicca is a “white only” kind of religion it doesn’t seem like she really has hit the heart of what Wicca is or has ever been or ever will be. I can only hope the Goddess will show her love and compassion because she apparently needs the Goddess’s wisdom right now.

For 13 years I’ve been a practicing Wiccan, I run my own coven both online and offline, and I teach anyone what I know if they are willing to learn. I’ve had students from all backgrounds and walks of life and I have loved each of them equally. If you are drawn to Wicca by Deity, and it’s the path for you, then it shouldn’t matter what your skin color is or anything else that I mentioned earlier.

Patti I applaud you dear for having such patience. I try to be as patient with people as I possible can be just like yourself, but you could not have written a better blog addressing this issue. So I give you a standing ovation for showing love, patience, wisdom and tolerance, even in the face of someone who is intolerant.

There is no White privilege or entitlement, we are ALL children of the Goddess and the God, no matter what our skin color may be.

)O( Blessing my dear.

June 19, 2012 at 4:49 pm
(24) Angie says:

“I don’t see any point to be wiccan then”
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Yeah…go with that…

June 19, 2012 at 4:49 pm
(25) Donnie says:

Good post, Way to go

June 19, 2012 at 4:54 pm
(26) Old Kitchen Witch says:

Oh Patti, I adore you! *standing ovation*

June 19, 2012 at 4:55 pm
(27) RainyNgt says:

So sad that someone who claims to be Wiccan can be so narrow-minded and bigoted toward others. “An ye harm none, do what ye will.” I applaud your well-worded and calm response. Blessed Be.

June 19, 2012 at 4:55 pm
(28) Rev Sylvanus says:

This lady hasnt heard of Luisa Teisch. Dianic Priestess. Very much an African American, not afraid to be spiritually connected to the Gods and Goddesses

June 19, 2012 at 4:56 pm
(29) Johanna Lawson says:

Bravo, Patti! Well said!

June 19, 2012 at 4:57 pm
(30) SilverFrog says:

A standing ovation to you Patti! Very well said. :)

June 19, 2012 at 4:58 pm
(31) xenologer says:

Awwww, poor Silvia. Her religion isn’t as safe for white supremacy anymore and now there’s JUST NO POINT to it!

Still, this is a good reminder that racism is far from dead. I mean, she is seriously complaining about integration in 2012. It is 2012.

June 19, 2012 at 4:59 pm
(32) Stephanie says:

I gotta say…this made me sad and made me chuckle a little bit. I have been discriminated against, but not for being white but for being Pagan. Lived in the Bible belt for many years and I was actually pulled over by a police officer who covered his badge, refused to tell me his name and continued to tell me how “My kind weren’t welcome around here”……Sounds to me like this lady needs to go hang out with this folks. You rock Patti!

June 19, 2012 at 4:59 pm
(33) Tala Nokomis says:

I find this kind of comment deplorable. By Silvia’s logic then whites shouldn’t be allowed to practice Buddhism, Hinduism, Native American traditions, Voodoo, Santaria, so on and so forth. Since when was a religious choice bound by race? I know a lot of people of Caucasian decent that practice any number of traditions. It all comes down to what is attractive to the individual and what feels right for the individual. If Silvia truly practices Wicca, then she should be more than aware of “An’ it harm none”. By excluding others based purely off of race, isn’t that causing harm to the individual excluded? Exclusion, in and of itself, is harmful. I’m sure whatever deity(ies) she serves is sorely disappointed. As far as I’m concerned, faith is color blind.

June 19, 2012 at 5:04 pm
(34) Alexandria says:

iI, as a fellow Wiccan, feel that I should post something.
I dont really feel like race should matter much. What about people like me, whose birth certificates may say white, but they have dark skin. I have my rights too. Im not any less than you. And Im treated just the same, so why cant people who are actually colored be able to practice the religion that they are. Wicca is not owned by a race. And I dont think the deities are very happy with this.

June 19, 2012 at 5:09 pm
(35) M. Evans says:

IAM BLACK/BROWN WICCAN/ PAGAN/ GODDESS WORSHIPER AND PROUD!
#BAM

DONT SUBMIT TO TITLES……….

June 19, 2012 at 5:10 pm
(36) Daniella says:

Very well said.

June 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm
(37) Heathernoel says:

I found your response to this comment perfect, you kept a level head and provided the tolerance she is seriously lacking. Wicca is a mosaic of colors and abilities, we embrace all and find the love of the Goddess and God in the mixing of our differences.

I would suggest that she find a path more suitable to her, Wicca is not it that is for sure.

Thank you for all your work on our behalf, I have grown and learned so much from you.

Blessed Be.

June 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm
(38) M. Evans says:

it always comes down to race with some folks! I won’t comment greatly cause it won’t make a difference to the greater consciousness of the world in general. I will however say this! Let those that are sleep, SLEEP so that the work can be done by the WORKERS LIGHT & DARK.

June 19, 2012 at 5:12 pm
(39) David says:

Maybe Sylvia just meant that people of western-Europe origin and living in highly industrialized and deeply christianized countries lost its pre-christian religions long ago, while other people in the world still would be keeping them. Thus, Wicca would be a recreation of a religion suitable for those lacking “traditional” own ones. It may be just a quite innocent point of view, despite the apparent racial bias.

June 19, 2012 at 5:13 pm
(40) Chris says:

You handled that quite well. Thank you.

June 19, 2012 at 5:15 pm
(41) Gab Huffman says:

Sylvia, darling, maybe you should find your own path, as this one doesn’t seem right for you. Do you not know that we all are precious children of The Universe/God/Goddess and this path is a path of acceptance? “LIVE AND LET ALL ELSE LIVE. FAIRLY TAKE AND FAIRLY GIVE”

June 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm
(42) autumn says:

you go hunny tell her ass.

June 19, 2012 at 5:27 pm
(43) Katie says:

Go Miss Patti! That is a fabulous response and one that is well deserved. Paganism may be a religion of tolerance and acceptance (something this chick obviously missed on her way in), but even these qualities can only be stretched so far. Acceptance and tolerance does not mean not calling out people for being bigoted idiots when they deserve it. *applaud*

June 19, 2012 at 5:33 pm
(44) JD says:

While I agree that anyone should feel free to follow any religious path they like, I’d like to say I actually have been pulled over for being white more than once before, haha. It’s what I get for coming from a black and latino neighborhood, I guess.

June 19, 2012 at 5:34 pm
(45) Lecia says:

We should never get comfortable with racism. It should always leave a sour taste in our mouth, having to deal with people like Silvia. If you give racism an inch, it will take EVERYTHING. Good on Patti for standing up in such a way that she did.

June 19, 2012 at 5:36 pm
(46) Manx Darcqpaw says:

The sad thing is, I know people who are Pagan but are huge conservative racists, and even THEY wouldn’t say this sort of thing. It bewilders me. A good 1/3 of our practice was stolen from the Native Americans. Our drumming circles and other traditions, from Africa. Christianity was started by Jewish people. Should only Jews be Christian?

I don’t know what part of “Celebrate nature and let all people come together as one in love of the Gods and acceptance” translates into “But it’s a whites-only thing.”

June 19, 2012 at 5:44 pm
(47) Cody says:

Whatever Sylvia thinks she’s practicing, if it in any way calls for the prejudice against, exclusion of, or special treatment of, any group, IT IS NOT WICCA.

June 19, 2012 at 5:47 pm
(48) val bobincheck says:

It is unfortunate that she is probably not the only person who feels that way. I had the s…t scared out of me when I was recently exploring some Slavic Pagan sites. She would fit right it, believe me.

June 19, 2012 at 5:58 pm
(49) Aelfwynne says:

I was called to paganism this past winter and have been exploring a Germanic (Heathen) path. Sadly, the Germanic groups seem to have a large number of racists. I had read that and hoped it wasn’t true. Finally, I found a group that very open and accepting and does not tolerate racism. But beforehand I had visited websites and pages for groups that made me uncomfortable with their ideas and discussions about race. Even though many claimed to not be racist, as soon as I read their discussion threads, it was obvious that they were. So, Silvia should have no problem joining a group that only accepts whites! Ironically, those groups also tend to hate Wicca too though, so maybe she’s out of luck! :P

June 19, 2012 at 6:07 pm
(50) Jahf says:

The day that Wicca (or any other practice in my life) becomes a haven for white power mentality is the day when “I don’t see any point to be Wiccan then.”

Silvia has the choice to practice with an all-white group or simply be solitary. Just as MANY other Wiccans and Pagans in general will be happy to never practice with her anywhere near our sacred space.

June 19, 2012 at 6:15 pm
(51) Viktoria R. Medicine Elk says:

If Silvia wishes to have racial exclusivity for whites only, she could join the KKK; they cast all-white circles before their cross-burning ritual. :)

June 19, 2012 at 6:36 pm
(52) Nydia says:

This literally made my day. Well-said, Patti! It’s unbelievable that a so-called pagan person can be so prejudiced and narrow-minded this way.

I wouldn’t give her a better response!

June 19, 2012 at 6:51 pm
(53) Amanda Pingel Ramsay says:

While I don’t follow Wicca and am only loosly Pagan, I was led to this page by a friend’s Facebook post, and I wanted to applaud Patti for refusing to let the worst elements of the group define your community. Way to stand up for what you actually believe in, rather than standing quietly by and hoping no one would notice.

June 19, 2012 at 6:55 pm
(54) Mia says:

I know plenty of people who practice Wicca and are racist – the idea is that some of the Wiccan traditions start in Ireland/Scotland, where most of the heritage is white. That being said, there are plenty of traditions including Greek (my personal path, though I am Irish by heritage), Roman, Egyptian, Sumerian, Native American, and Hawaiian, which include many people of different colors because that is the background which they arise from.

I say let’s celebrate the cohesiveness of the Pagan/Wiccan tradition and include all people, no matter their race or color!

Go Patti!

June 19, 2012 at 6:58 pm
(55) Amber says:

I had a lovely long rambling post-far too long for here. What I can post in this space:

While not agreeing with Sylvia’s approach, where does a member of a majority group go to explore the issues from being raised as a member of a majority (and sometimes to deal with overcoming those issues) in a self-affirming/healthy/empowering way? Pride is okay, but not if it is white or straight?

Majorities are stuck in the same dualism as minorities- and unless that is changed they have to be bad for minorities to be good. Because the “majorities” have long been defined as whatever is not a “minority”. Where do they go to get past that? In a way that isn’t first about being ashamed of being white/straight/male/whatever? I know I have been subject to abuse from lgbt/non-white/non-able bodied friends at times for representing what they saw themselves needing to reject/overcome. I have been lectured about the shame I should have because my ancestors/people like me/etc did bad things. Where do I go to come to terms with my “peoples’ ” histories that won’t be construed as exclusive and prejudicial to those not white/straight/etc? I have joked that it is lucky I am female and pagan- I’d have no self esteem left if I was a white, male, able bodied, straight christian…

It doesn’t require a whole religion, but I can agree with the need for sometimes a white space just like I could for a black space or a gay space or a male space or a female space to try to figure out what you are with those of your own kind (whatever aspect of yourself you are exploring, however small it may be- even a Karyn spelled with a “Y” space if two or more find it worth exploring)

June 19, 2012 at 7:07 pm
(56) WiccanMan says:

Dear Goddess, I can’t believe people actually want Wicca to be only for whites. The God and Goddess have no race!!!

June 19, 2012 at 7:07 pm
(57) WiccanMan says:

Dear Goddess, I can’t believe people actually want Wicca to be only for whites. The God and Goddess have no race!!!

June 19, 2012 at 7:09 pm
(58) paganwiccan says:

Amber (55), you do make the very valid point that sometimes, people do need a space they feel at home in. As I said above, there’s nothing wrong with being inclusive, until it turns exclusionary. I have no problem with someone saying, “I’d like to practice with people that are similar to me.” What I have a problem with is “People who are different from me shouldn’t be allowed to practice the way I do,” which is what I got from Silvia’s post.

Certainly, if you’re part of an LGBT-only group, or a group for women only, or yes, even a group full of people of the same skin color, that’s fine – everyone needs a place where they feel like they belong, and where they feel safe. When it becomes Not Very Okay is when those people try to dictate what others can do, believe and practice.

patti

June 19, 2012 at 7:36 pm
(59) Nara says:

Well said, Patti!

June 19, 2012 at 7:46 pm
(60) LaTrice says:

Amber (55) — I must respectfully disagree with your statement . . .”Pride is okay, but not if it’s white or straight” I don’t think anyone has a problem with white people being proud of the hertiage or their sexual orientation. I believe what most people have an issue with is when “White Pride” attempts to make itself superior, to marginalize, discriminate, and hate on others, simply because their skin color or who they happen to love..

June 19, 2012 at 8:16 pm
(61) LN says:

Are we sure this Silvia person wasn’t just trolling to spark something like this? These types are all over the Internet. Still, I feel Patti’s response was perfect, both in the post and to Amber (55). I don’t want to talk about the racial aspect, because it makes me sad knowing that I will be looked on differently not only for race, but for gender, age, you name it. I can’t and don’t want to control how people think; that’s counter productive. But it still saddens me to know this is some of the ways their ideals go, and there really isn’t anything to do about it but hope for divine intervention of self awareness.

Yeah, long way to go on that one.

My only regret on this particular incident is that there was a need to give this Silvia commenter any additional time in the spotlight. I’m simply happy with it not turning into an all out flamewar, and again, Patti handled it perfectly.

June 19, 2012 at 8:41 pm
(62) Jonquil says:

Such a sad, bleak, & frightening world Silvia lives in. I am immensely glad that I don’t inhabit the same place. For I am a member of the human species, not merely ‘white folk’, so I take collective pride in the culture & achievements of my race: human. I enjoy the beauty within Hawaiian hula as they dance & sing their myths. I enjoy the sweeping beauty of gothic churches & stained glass windows. I enjoy the rhythm of Australian Aborigine. I enjoy dancing with WIccans through the Wheel. I enjoy intellectual discussions with Atheists & Agnostics.

June 19, 2012 at 9:20 pm
(63) Riobha says:

It is, often, too easy to let people like Silvia get away with racist remarks because we don’t want to “stir the pot”…
Thank you, Patti, for standing up and stirring the whole damned caldron!

June 19, 2012 at 9:34 pm
(64) Megan Romer - World Music says:

*Stands and applauds*

June 19, 2012 at 9:35 pm
(65) Megan Romer - World Music says:

Nowhere that white people can come together and take pride in their shared cultures… really? Try the U.S. Congress.

June 19, 2012 at 9:40 pm
(66) Michelle says:

There are so many “White Pride” groups she is able to hang out with. I donít agree with her statement or her views, but her post reminded me of how lucky I am to be in the United States. She is able to hold her views without fear of prosecution or persecution thanks to the diverse military members, lawyersí and elected officials who ensure her rights as well as my own to hold our own beliefs sacred. Thank you for the strong reminder of what a wonderful country I live in, where I can practice my religion freely, and without fear.

June 19, 2012 at 10:33 pm
(67) Hazel says:

To Sylvia, From one white BITCH to another.

AH MY GODDESS!!

(Who is from this moment on forever is black as the night sky with stars in her hair and currently smiling brilliantly at the pretty little ginger witch who is currently screaming obsenities at her computer screen with a fever only trumped by the firey colour of her hair.)

Seriously?

And here I thought I could escape stupid by being Pagan. Or.. wait.. something about seeking freedom to be able to worship the MANY and VARIOUS diety and spirits in the world. Kind of like the MANY and VARIOUS people in the world wondering around searching for LOVE and KINDNESS in all things. AND YE HARM NONE and whatnot.

Well… now that I’m done screaming I’m just sad. It’s a good thing my big beautiful black goddess and asian god and their bi-racial mexican baby god love you Sylvia, becuase it’ll take a while for me to get around to it.

I enjoyed reading the other comments. Live and let live, pointing out the race of the Goddess in many traditions, etc.

What I find the most heartbreaking is that you, Sylvia would turn your back on the beautiful and loving warmth of the Spirit Eternal and the Elements for the fact that another person loves her too. Being pagan, to me, is a very personal journey that I find hard to share with a group at times. But I don’t want to go about burning people at the stake just because they love my goddess as much as I do or because they paint her face white or yellow or brown or whatever. The Spirit comes to us all in the Elements and through the burning love and cleansing experience we all grow closer together, brothers and sisters treading water in the river of the gods light. But if you can’t find the way in this path then please, by all means, find it in another- but please, try to be colour blind when you next approach a faith and remember- kindness is the answer.

June 19, 2012 at 11:09 pm
(68) Mari Elm says:

Thank you, Patti, well said.

June 20, 2012 at 2:32 am
(69) Rowan ferch Gwynedd says:

*Stands and applauds with all the others*

June 20, 2012 at 5:27 am
(70) Tina C. says:

Then you don’t get the point of Wicca. How can a person who claims to be Wiccan say something so….stupid! We’re all Children of the God and Goddess and it SHOULD’NT matter!

June 20, 2012 at 8:50 am
(71) Setarah says:

I am a Black American Wiccan. I found this path not because of cultural or racial interferences, but because it was the path that most spoke to me. Silvia is entitled to her opinion, I feel that blaming her issue on Patty and claiming that Wicca is the only place that Caucasians have that is theirs is ignorant. Honestly, in the big scheme of things, we are all part of the whole. Thank you Patty for this response.

June 20, 2012 at 9:19 am
(72) MargoKey says:

I, too, am on my feet applauding. I just hope she reads it!

One of the wonderful aspects of Wicca is that it is color blind. We accept all and we are accepted by all.

When someone makes this kind of comment, one that appears to come out of left field, I always wonder what prompted it. Where did she get that notion? Did someone tell her or did she read it somewhere? Either way, she is not what the Divine is all about. I’ve always believed (although I know many very religious and devout people don’t) that we are all accepted, warts and all, so to speak, by our Divine, god, or goddess.

June 20, 2012 at 9:26 am
(73) Maigen says:

:(
This person, silvia, makes me very sad.. I happen to be a very white girl from Louisiana that first learned my craft from an African American that is a foot taller than myself. He was an amazing teacher, and we were really good friends until he graduated. He moved away, but we still do rituals together over skype! :) He brings a flavor and energy that is entirely his own, and not something he learned from being “black” or “red” or “yellow” or “blue” or whatever the heck you wanna call it..
And I’m proud to say that I’m a stronger person because of my spiritual faith. I now own my own pagan home-run business, and I also run a farm.
Oh, and Silvia? GUESS WHAT!!!! *hehehee* I have a pretty good bet that you were “black” in a past life! XD It’s very likely. So don’t prejudice against yourself.

June 20, 2012 at 9:42 am
(74) Eileen says:

I just wanted to say, it’s great that you addressed this hateful comment, and did so with class. I think it’s reprehensible that someone would think ANY religion should be ‘reserved’ for ANY one race. And where she adds that she doesn’t see any point to being Wiccan, if people of other races are included, is one of the worst statements I have seen in a long time; as if she only became a Wiccan because she could not find a local KKK, and the spiritual aspects are irrelevant. Personally, I love that the Circle I attend is multicultural and multiracial, we celebrate the earth and talk about our shared history as well as our cultural variances.

June 20, 2012 at 11:12 am
(75) Pixie says:

WOOT WOOT! Go, Patti!

June 20, 2012 at 11:19 am
(76) BaschaW says:

*Standing Ovation*
And I would like to relate a short story by the late, great, Robert Heinlein:
“I once had a Small lizard tell me he was a brontosaurus on his mothers side. I did not laugh, for if someone is bragging about their ancestry, they must not have much else.”

June 20, 2012 at 11:32 am
(77) Symara says:

Patti, you are wonderful for bringing this to our attention and the way you handled it!

I agree with all others above and can’t really add anything that already hasn’t been said. Wicca and most other pagan religions has elements that have been taken from other religions WORLDWIDE. Sylvia would need to practice something that has not borrowed to be anywhere near right, and to do that she must have a time machine to go back and find it.
On another note, most countries, and especially the US have become melting pots. Can anyone really prove they don’t have some type of other race in their heritage or bloodline? I know personally that I have German, Native American and Irish in my ancestory. I can’t say that I don’t have anything else, for all I know I may have African American somewhere way back there. I personally don’t feel there is a “white race” anymore, nor is there a “black” one to me. There are too many unknowns in everyone’s bloodlines.
I’ll step down off my stool now.

June 20, 2012 at 12:15 pm
(78) kdc says:

I am also, as Patti says, as white as they get (Icelandic and American — one ancestor was a founding father of Virginia at Jamestown, and one grandmother was born in Iceland) and, when in my early 20′s, experienced discrimination for the first time in my pampered life. It finally dawned on me then that the entire USA was set up for my white convenience and comfort. If I want to “experience collective pride for their culture and ancestors” I can do it today almost anywhere in this great melting pot of a country that my ancestors chose to come to, where we can choose to follow our heart’s calling. If I want to experience my ancestors’ religions, I can choose from Asatru or Christianity or who the heck knows what, way back in there. If I want my own fabulous spiritual path, I can choose the one to which I am called — which I do. And anyone who thinks non-whites don’t belong on some path can kiss my white ass, because that’s all you’ll see of me as I’ll be way ahead of you, skipping exuberantly up the path.

June 20, 2012 at 12:22 pm
(79) Claudine says:

Patti, your response was perfect. Perfect. As was your response to Amber (55), who sounds well intentioned but a bit angry and rejected.

JammaBeanz, Angie, Jahf, LN, Riobha, Michelle (66), and so many others, said things I was thinking, almost verbatim.
There are so many wonderful comments written here that beautifully manifest the mix of race and culture that paganism draws from.

Whether Silvia is trolling, which makes her an ugly person with too much time on her hands, or truly suffers ignorance to the degree espoused in her comment, I don’t like her. And that’s okay. She probably wouldn’t like me either, even though I’m white beyond pale. And apparently, Patti, as I treasure all that I’ve learned being Wiccan and through the varied people I’ve met, and the manifestations of the God and Goddess in all their forms, from Ganesha to Bastet, Spider Woman to Quan Yin, Cernunnos to Nabu, I have you personally to thank for that!

Thank you Patti, for yet another interesting post, another opportunity to “meet with” this community.

Blessed Be

June 20, 2012 at 1:13 pm
(80) Kimberly Bidwell says:

Bravo, to all of you…. How dare this one Lady judge in such a way! There is a group where there is white pride…do your research, Wicca is not for you if your a bigot. We teach tolerance and love and here she is standing saying these things. She might as well join the KKK or the Aryan Nation. Shame on her and Bravo to you for being real with
her!

June 20, 2012 at 3:27 pm
(81) Star Bustamonte says:

I think we can all agree that Silvia is an excellent example of willful ignorance. She knows not of history, or spelling and grammar, either. I can wish only for the Goddess to truly pay her a visit and get her sorted.

Rock on, Patti!

June 20, 2012 at 4:00 pm
(82) Byron Ballard says:

Dang, Patti. Well done, you. :>)

June 20, 2012 at 4:30 pm
(83) Etta says:

What a racist thing to say. Silvia is obviously not a true wiccan. She has not right to call herself such. Any true Wiccan wouldn’t exclude someone from their circle cause of the colour of their skin. This lady needs to find something else to do. Silvia, sure you don’t belong to the klu klux klan circle?

June 20, 2012 at 5:03 pm
(84) Evie says:

Touchť Patti

As social media grows, I find myself reaching out for wiccans, pagans, anyone of the Olde Religions (OR.) And like every belief, the good people flow in with the bad. At first I was surprised to find so many “my way or the highway” ORs. “No. You can’t spell magic magick.” “No you can’t be sad at times in your life. That’s a pity party.” “Well if it happened to you, it is Karma and you must have done something bad.”

No Different than my aunt who would tell me as a child, ” Cover your mouth when you yawn or the devil will steal your soul.” which today I may literally be falling asleep yawning, and with panic, cover my mouth with both hands and sit up. “See that girl wearing that short skirt? She is asking to be raped.” And my favorite from my biological father who spent 1/2 an hour telling me that “black blood and mexican blood do not mix.” Yes “Silvia.” I am the 6th generation of a 5th pure blood Texas Mexican when Texas was apart of Mexico.

There are haters in every religion, including ours. It is the good that is important to look for. May people like “silvia” awaken with the realization that we are a tossed salad of beliefs, colors, heights, weights, abilities.. “Silvia” will wish for all her coven to be white until she learns there may be no coven who wants her.

How lonely some people are to need to place titles and expectations beyond ones control..

I will not exclude you for your Race, color, Ancestry or national origin, Sex, Marital status, Source of income, Sexual Orientation, Familial status (households with children under 18 years of age,) Religion, Mental/Physical Disability, Medical Condition, or Age.

I will exclude you for your prejudices and bringing harm to others..

Blessed Be. Patti Thank you.

June 20, 2012 at 5:19 pm
(85) Korvo says:

Wicca has a real opportunity to be a tolerant, inclusive, life-affirming path for all. I believe that most of us want that to happen. I believe that the tenets of Wicca do support tolerance, and do not support racism.

Silvia is certainly welcome to her opinion, but the rest of us Wiccans do not agree. I certainly don’t, and I’ve been on this path for 20 years. I don’t care what race, sexual orientation or gender a person may be – all are welcome.

Well said, Patti. Blessed Be!

June 20, 2012 at 6:56 pm
(86) Sandy says:

My first time posting ever……. Finding this path and way of life so much later in life than many others I feel a tad inadequate to state an opinion as I still have so much to learn. (Hopefully always will!)
I have to say though, my heart breaks a bit for this poor woman who, it would seem, just doesn’t “get it”. One of the things I love most about Wicca, and Paganism in general, is that those who feel drawn to it and follow it are such a diverse group of people.
How wonderful it has been to see so many posts supporting Patti as well as people stating ideas and beliefs that very much mirror my own. Would sort of be nice to have a “like” button!
Thank you Patti for being so kind in your response. Another lesson for me as I do not think I could have been so kind and generous.
Blessed Be

June 20, 2012 at 10:24 pm
(87) Slinkiee says:

There are people like this in every religion, in every neighborhood and on the city bus. ;o/
Prejudice has been around since the beginning and will likely continue unfortunately.
Good on ‘ya Patti for addressing this person in the way you have. I pray that she will see beyond her prejudices someday however she may have to be recycled a few times first.

June 21, 2012 at 4:29 am
(88) Rose says:

I have been dedicated to the Goddess and God for 34yrs and have watched the changes in the Pagan community since my mom was a flower power witch of the 60′s and early 70′s. Every community has it’s rabble rousers and malcontents, this woman’s obviously from a white supremist background!
I am a witch, and have been fairly proud of the Pagan Movement. We are the most inviting and accepting of individuals, LGBT, Polygamous, black white yellow red brown, Gods’ know we all bleed red, the more the merrier, live, love, laugh and let live!!!
Then I read an article like this, and see that we still have more educating to do. We are not about hate, we can do hate just like any other group but Our Chosen Paths generally are about spiritual growth while living in this mundane world.
It’s sad that Silvia, hasn’t learned yet The Goddesses and Gods love all Their Children. Her fine tuned prejudices are showing, not her spirituality nor her growth as a Wiccan/Witch.
Head Hand & Heart
Forrester’s Witch

June 21, 2012 at 11:06 am
(89) ArDee says:

I find this amazingly disturbing. Yet, it is quite typical of a small percentage of people’s mindsets.

The strange thing is, that most Wiccan Denominations(?) are all about tolerance and acceptance, even if there is a line drawn when it comes to Coven membership, etc. The ‘racial card’ is not something I see played very often. Granted, in many cases, the ‘Bristish’ slant of Madern Paganism (meaning 20th century) can be somewhat ‘whiter’ than the rest of religions, but for this lady to make it into a ‘racial’ matter is really a bit much.

There are countless posts/comments on here that state the same thing I am referring to.

Just like everyone else, I am more than a little floored.
For me, the bottom line is this: Every person, no matter their culture of color, has something to teach, or learn from others. Since when did race become an issue in worship of the Divine, no matter if your into Voodoo, Paganism, Christianity, or even some weird offshoot ‘cult’ religion.

I don’t understand this lady at all!!

I agree, Patti. Don’t let the door even being in the way stop you from leaving. Just take a hike, and try and find some people who believe as you do. I think there might be less than you realize.

June 21, 2012 at 11:15 am
(90) melanie silver says:

im sorry, but us white pagans dont like the bigoted comments either. i prefer to worship with people of all colors and experiences. i hope this woman is kicked out of any wiccan group she belongs to for this bigoted views. paganism is all inclusive not exclusive. she needs to get a life. bravo patti for telling her where to go.
melanie silver

June 21, 2012 at 4:32 pm
(91) cinna says:

Silvia, your just stupid ! I cant even believe you went there ! You sound like something out of Forest Gump, lost episode of Jerry. Its 2012, blacks and whites can ride the same bus now. You must have been grogy,and sleepy when you left that comment. Right. ; / Really !

June 22, 2012 at 12:50 am
(92) Bittysnitty says:

You go girl !!! While I am also as white as can be on the outside, my Spirit is all colors and no color. I started on my path years ago and found Wicca 2 years ago. Your wonderful site got me started on my path. I am now a Celtic Pagan on the path of Druidry who also honors Sedna. I have no room for hatred or racism. I loved your response and applaud you. Well done Patti.

June 23, 2012 at 7:26 am
(93) Aonbhar says:

I’m White and a Witch and live in England.
Not a White Witch that’s a whole other can of beans.
I can’t imagine even considering skin colour as an aspect of choosing a new member for our coven. Perhaps I live in privilege and don’t understand the “real world”. Racism over here flares up in different areas motivated on the whole by mass immigrations to our small island and on our losing our identity. But there was a time when mass immigration saved us all.

During the second world war something that’s not often discussed over here because of all the sacrifices made, is the reaction by American troops to us who, on the whole, treated Black troops the same as White and couldn’t understand why their roles in the forces was restricted because of skin colour. That’s not to say there wasn’t resistance over here in some quarters by our forces to taking on the dispossessed into our armed forces to strengthen numbers, but in the end we recognised the strength and abilities they could offer us, because “Diversity Is Strength”.

In terms of culture, biology, economy and society in general, it all comes down to how we react to change as what results.

Bringing it back to topic:
Isis is Black and White
Blessed Be.
X

June 24, 2012 at 1:08 pm
(94) amber0512lynn says:

What drew me to wicca was the fact that is about loving one another and the beautiful, magical world we live in. Bringing racism into it only shows ignorance and hate. You should be ashamed silvia and honestly, wicca doesnt need someone as hateful as you representing it. Its ignorant people like you that give the rest of wiccan practitioners a bad name. Patti was right, hit the door lady.

June 24, 2012 at 1:56 pm
(95) Renwulf says:

Honestly I am shocked with the fact Silvia even made a comment like that, to think in this day in age that anyone still discriminates again color. And being pagan and being in the community I find most pagans more friendly and understanding when it comes to discrimination because even thou we are more widely known, many of us still fight religious discrimination quite often.

June 25, 2012 at 9:05 pm
(96) Rowen says:

Hooray Patti!!!!

I stumbled on this article by accident and I’m so glad I did.

I’ve seen your about.com column several times when I have googled things about Wicca. Your reaction to “Sylvia the Bigot” has made me a fan. You are articulate, intelligent and I appreciate and praise your huztpah.

My background is Irish and Welsh, can’t get much whiter than that. I agree that everyone of open mind and heart should be welcomed into our circle. Our great Mother didn’t make beautiful rainbows white, they are beautiful because of their color!

June 26, 2012 at 8:35 am
(97) MegaBeth says:

Silvia is a racist.

end of discussion

June 26, 2012 at 8:38 am
(98) Marie VanMatre says:

I applaud you. very nicely put and straight to the point. Since when can you only practice Wiccan/Pagen if you are white? I personally don’t think that race should have anything to do with religion. You should be free to chose. and if you don’t like some one who is practicing the same religion as you are, then go home and practice alone, or better yet change your religion because we do not need that kind of racism in OUR religion.

June 26, 2012 at 8:41 am
(99) Terry Elliott says:

Great job Patti. Some people just can’t or won’t see the truth no matter how obvious it can be, but you definitely have the right response skills dear. Blessed Be.

June 26, 2012 at 8:42 am
(100) Willow SilverMoon says:

Well said, Patti. A much deserved “stand and applaud” is in place for you! Blessed Be.

June 26, 2012 at 8:43 am
(101) Melissa says:

Well said, Patti.

June 26, 2012 at 8:44 am
(102) Shelley says:

Perfectly said Patti! Kudos to you for calling this person out. It’s shameful to see someone that is supposedly living in harmony and balance with all display such intolerance. I’m ecclectic and have been known to utilize many traditions in my practices, including African and Cuban traditions and have never ran across somebody denying me that freedom. Again Patti, well done! *thumbs up*

June 26, 2012 at 8:45 am
(103) Maree says:

Until I moved to the States about a year and a half ago I had never even considered or thought about color/nationality in the pagan community. Being from New Zealand those following the wicca/pagan path I knew came in all shapes, sizes and colors. Reading what this woman had to say I wonder how she started following wicca in the first place. All I have to say Patti, is I agree with you 100%

June 26, 2012 at 8:48 am
(104) PolarDesire says:

I am almost lost for words!
Thank you for standing up to her

June 26, 2012 at 8:48 am
(105) Snowy Bailey says:

*APPLAUDS* Kudos to you, Patti! Sylvia obviously doesn’t even BEGIN to understand what Wicca is really all about. And thankfully, she does not speak for the majority of us who DO.

June 26, 2012 at 8:51 am
(106) GwynnethSilver says:

Wow, I’m almost ashamed to say I share a race with that woman. She needs to go find some website like WhiteWiccaNaziSkinheads.com or something and share her beliefs with other idiots. I just hope she knows that *those* people don’t believe in Wicca. Hmm, sounds like she’s a loser in any circle.

June 26, 2012 at 8:53 am
(107) Jay says:

“We all come from the goddess and to her we shall return…” Just a little Wiccan chant Silvia obviously doesn’t like.

June 26, 2012 at 8:54 am
(108) Henry Roop says:

Merry Greetings Patti. I too, believe wicca is for all people. When the perfect “soul” is reborne, it might choose a different race entitely. I am certain I have come from different races.

June 26, 2012 at 8:55 am
(109) Zoey says:

Wow, how very un-Wiccan of Sylvia…

June 26, 2012 at 8:55 am
(110) Shanan says:

Silvia, I firmly believe that it’s high time for you to take a step back and reexamine YOUR INTENT! Are you sure that you’re Wiccan? Do you even know and fully understand the Wiccan Rede? Or maybe you just can’t read!? The Rede VERY PLAINLY states “Do what you will amd it HARM NONE”! Your words have potentially done more harm than any action! BTW… IF YOU CAN’T OPEN YOUR MIND THEN MAYBE YOU SHOULD SHUT YOUR MOUTH!

June 26, 2012 at 8:59 am
(111) Joy says:

As a mix of european/american indian descent – I have to say Brava Patti

It is sad that in 2012 hatred still lives…for race, sexuality, religion, but I had hoped anyone following the old religions would at least be tolerant.

Silvia – I pray the Gods open your heart and mind – to live in such a narrow world must be painful.

June 26, 2012 at 9:01 am
(112) Gladys says:

I have but one thing to say as a Hispanic person. You can’t argue with stupid, if you do they will pull you down to their level and beat you with experience.
All that aside, well said Patti.

June 26, 2012 at 9:03 am
(113) Garry says:

Standing applause *CROWD NOISE* woop woop! Blessed Be to ALL =)

June 26, 2012 at 9:05 am
(114) Mandy says:

Right on!! <3 you, Patti!!!

June 26, 2012 at 9:06 am
(115) Felicity says:

Excellent article Patti, thank you so much for calling this terrible person out! You’d really think a wiccan or pagan would be way more accepting! As a black pagan woman I know my life isn’t going to be easy..but I know as long as there are wonderful people like you to point out the wrongs it’ll at least restore my faith in humanity. Blessings to you!

And by the way..this person got it so wrong… wicca practically borrows from every tradition around the world so its origins aren’t strictly european..it’s ideas and even rituals are very similar to others in places such as india and africa…oh yes don’t forget those who practice kemetic wicca…you know the egyptian pantheon..the egyptians are african! XD So silly someone can sound without some research! =p

June 26, 2012 at 9:07 am
(116) Guilherme7530 says:

That’s a very good response, Patti.
There’s one more thing that should be taken in consideration: I am not white: I’m from Brazil, where all the possible races are mixed. Maybe I should follow the pagan path of my Native great-grandmother, but can’t I follow the pagan path of my Italian great-grandparents, either? Now what should I follow? If race chooses your religion for you, because of our ancestors, then shouldn’t most of we be Christians?
We should choose our own path, not the race of those who brought us into the world.
So, very well again, Patti. I hope there aren’t much others like Silvia among us.

June 26, 2012 at 9:08 am
(117) Jemmy says:

I fully agree with you on this issue Patti. I have no time for bigotry on any level. I have never seen it before in any Pagan community I have come across. I believe we are all of the Earth: whatever skin colour, gender, orientation and even all creeds should exist together as children of the Earth. Love and light to all and Silvia may you find a path that will enlighten you of your ignorance as hatred will only damage you and leave you a lonely soul. Blessed be )O(

June 26, 2012 at 9:12 am
(118) Wolf Mountain Woman says:

WELL SAID PATTI!

June 26, 2012 at 9:12 am
(119) ophelia says:

Bravo Patti! Well said, well said.

June 26, 2012 at 9:16 am
(120) karen says:

BRAVO PATTI!!!!!

June 26, 2012 at 9:19 am
(121) Sheralie Samuels says:

Standing Freaking Ovation Patti!
Silvia you need to do some serious soul searching, Wiccan you are not. I was unaware that the colour of my skin would be so important to someone who claims to follow the Wiccan Rede.

Sheesh some times I truly have to wonder.

June 26, 2012 at 9:24 am
(122) Lady Red Robin Lambert says:

Sounds like her own spiritual battle is getting the best of her! I hope she finds peace within her heart regardless of what color she is! ( White is still a color)

June 26, 2012 at 9:25 am
(123) Amber Moon says:

Well done!

June 26, 2012 at 9:27 am
(124) Bob says:

Silvia get a life

June 26, 2012 at 9:32 am
(125) Calaban says:

Bravo Patti! I cannot believe anyone would make such a statement. The gods themselves (many of whom are NOT “white folks”) must be shaking their heads in disbelief. Silvia should be ashamed.

By the way, Patti, I have been reading your blog since you first started with About.com, and always enjoy what you have to say. I’m not one for responding to articles very often, but I could not let this one pass without comment. Keep up the good work! We ALL benefit from your writing.

June 26, 2012 at 9:37 am
(126) Caren says:

Prompted to consider the basic tenets of Wicca which of course celebrate Oneness, I must share my opinion that Silvia isn’t as Wiccan as she believes herself to be.

June 26, 2012 at 9:38 am
(127) Karen says:

I has taken me a couple minutes after reading this post, to come up with something that doesn’t stoop to this persons level.
Isn’t Wicca our place to be, because we all believe in our hearts
that this is where we belong? we love and share ourselves without prejudices? I kinda thought thats how it all worked! how can you spread your light and love around, if you are sorting by color??
and its to bad “ya just can’t fix STUPID!”
Brightest Blessings to ALL! ~K

June 26, 2012 at 9:40 am
(128) Carolyn says:

Hell Ya! you tell her patti,Goddess ,some people have the nerve! personally I think she needs to find a new religion because obviously paganism is too worldly and classy for her she can’t handle it . Now Patti don’t get upset we all know you tried to keep it all white , but damn it , it was just too many of them just what were you suppose to do? ( a little sarcasm there for ya ) lmao! well like they say there is always one nut in the bowl.

June 26, 2012 at 9:40 am
(129) Susan says:

Thank you, Patti. I’m as white as you can get too, and I don’t get this attitude. What I do get is that if you had absolutely no colour, Silvia, you are a person who is so in pain, and so trapped by your limiting beliefs, you need help. Perhaps you’d like to start with examining your beliefs surrounding: “There’s not enough so I have to go out and get it. I have to take from others before they take from me.”. If you look at your life under the lens of this belief, I’m about 150% sure it extends not only to your spiritual beliefs, but also how you handle your money, your time, offering up comfort to others (not), and more. If you have kids, I hope they have learned to hide their candy in self-defense.

June 26, 2012 at 9:43 am
(130) Amybeader says:

*applauds with everyone else* *sighs in sadness for Sylvia*

June 26, 2012 at 9:48 am
(131) Atreides says:

Bravo Patti, Bravo!

June 26, 2012 at 9:54 am
(132) Kevin Butler says:

Well said indeed Patti! Sylvia, and people like her need some serious help.

June 26, 2012 at 9:55 am
(133) Lady T says:

It’s hard to believe that this kind of racism still exists in 2012, yet, unfortunately, it does.
What I love most about Wicca and being a Witch is that my belief in diversity is accepted.
When my daughter was a young child I bought her her first barbie. Sonni chose a black Barbie because “She’s Beautiful, Mommy.”
Many other Barbies and Ken’s both black and white lived in her dollhouse together. We were living in Virginia.
Sonni’s new playmate had come and gone abruptly on this one particular afternoon and Sonni came down the stairs from her room in tears. “I don’t want to play with her anymore Mommy. She threw all of my black Barbie’s out of the dollhouse and said they don’t belong together. That’s not right”….I dried her tears and explained that in HER house and in MINE everyone is welcome. My daughter was 6 years old. Unfortunately, Racism as well as Acceptance, starts at a young age…
Perhaps Sylvia’s racism was handed down to her from her parents.
However, as an adult , she has the choice to be hateful or not.
Bravo to you Patti. And to all of the other Wonderful Wiccans and Witches who are here in support of you and our diversity.

Lady T of Crownledge
Charmed in New England

June 26, 2012 at 10:01 am
(134) Jennifer says:

I love seeing wiccans of different races other than white. My family is biracial (I’m white but my cousins and uncles/aunts etc are of many different races or mixed) and because my husband is black and my children are mixed I really don’t want to worry about running across any racism. I have to say it is a very big deal. Every time I visit a new group I always worry about what their responses will be when we walk in the door. I usually never feel like anyone is racist or they keep it to themselves but we do feel like the odd one out sometimes. People like Silvia make me feel the need to be solitary and that isn’t what I want for my children.

June 26, 2012 at 10:02 am
(135) Kari Tompkins says:

Well, I suppose if the poster wants an all white religious system, she can always opt for folkish Asatru. But then again, maybe she doesn’t qualify.

June 26, 2012 at 10:06 am
(136) Crystal Rose says:

Good job, Patti. Glad to see that this kind of racism won’t be tolerated here.

June 26, 2012 at 10:06 am
(137) Cindy says:

While Silvia may be entitled to her opinion, I am VERY glad that most people I have read comments/blogs from and have gotten to know through the Wiccan websites are not (myself included) bigoted in their practice. I feel Wicca is for those who feel connected to the practice/religeon because of their outlook/life not because of skin color or ethnic background. I have only felt welcomed, not excluded and like to think I live my life that way as to include others not matter what. I applaud your comments to Silvia and agree that if she does not like inclusiveness then she should look elsewhere for a practice she does feel comfortable with. I hope she finds happiness and fulfillment and learns tolerance where she goes.

June 26, 2012 at 10:07 am
(138) Eliora says:

For me, one of the most freeing aspects of being Pagan is leaving the arrogance of exclusivity to the “religious”.

Although she has a right to her opinion, her vehemence is shocking, primarily because I have found it rare to encounter such hatred in Paganism.

June 26, 2012 at 10:09 am
(139) Pattyann says:

True witches wear capes but not KKK hoods-harm none by word or deed because karma will bite your lily white butt

June 26, 2012 at 10:09 am
(140) Tamar says:

First, kudos to Patti for her eloquent response to Sylvia, second, Amber, I agree with you TOTALLY! It’s not OK to have ‘pride’ if you’re white or male – it’s racist! That having been said, I think that Sylvia was a “lurker” – and decided to post to see what sort of brouhaha she(?) could encite.
Regardless, lets just try to get a long.

June 26, 2012 at 10:10 am
(141) Traci says:

Really? I’m of the African American descent and I practice Wicca. It’s people like her that shows the ignorance of other races. I don’t understand why some people think that certain religions has to do with race, it’s just stupid.

June 26, 2012 at 10:16 am
(142) Autumn Vibe says:

We all know that’s simply not true and it was probably just to get attention too cause low energy drama. The comment made by Silvia is just ignorant and rude. We ALREADY have a lot of diversity that we deal with as a Sub-culture under the umbrella of Neo-Paganism these types of thoughts or posts just confirm that there is still a lot of work to be done in how we address the close minded stereotypes that not only “US” as a growing society but how the World views what we do and why. So its good to confront practitioners who obviously have the wrong mindset, return the energy back by teaching a powerful lesson. We are connected with the ALL we can strive for making better decisions and rise up in taking action against ill willed nonsense. Blessed be/Namaste.

June 26, 2012 at 10:18 am
(143) Carrie says:

Hi.. I am newbie and honestly this is my best spot for answers and questions that I have….
I am so disappointed that some like Slyvia can say something like this.
I have learned so much in the past year from you Patti I think you are amazing guide.
I am a very shy person who does not speak out on much…
But this is very disappointing to see someone think that because of the colour of skin that determines what rights they have to be part of something special.

I am white as can be… I would never think that I am any better than anyone one else…
I saw one of the comments saying she belongs with the KKK… disgusted to know they probably still exist Anyone who practises any religion that harms or mistreat any other human being or any life forms. Its too bad these types of people think the way they do…

I loved your examples of the things that we as whites never had to deal with… I think its time that Sylvia ( put her self in their shoes) she needs to see the othe side…. From what I have learned here
She is not following a path she is planning her own destruction.

Thanks Patti.
You have been helping me from the start learning and understanding and truly truly think this is a great site.

June 26, 2012 at 10:18 am
(144) Scarlett says:

If she wants exclusivity so badly she can try the Lutherans or the Baptists. From what I understand they love to exclude people.

June 26, 2012 at 10:21 am
(145) Kerry says:

YAY Patti……
both my husband and my jaws are still on the ground, we haven’t been able to get them up just yet.
Interesting though, we were discussing racism in Wicca just this evening and I read this article now…
This is extremely OFFENSIVE to all, especially to the Goddess and the God… as someone who calls herself (Sylvia) a Wiccan I am really taken aback at the lack of regard for the Rede and the BASIC tenants if you will of Wicca.. “and ye harm NONE”
great harm has been caused and the Rule of Three has been disregarded in her words, heart and actions.
We are ALL of us, all colours and orientations, the SAME INSIDE.
Pity that this one has now sullied the name of the Goddess and Wicca by that little bit….
I SO HOPE that folk will NOT judge Wicca by this woman’s words and actions.

June 26, 2012 at 10:22 am
(146) WhiteFeather says:

As a Black-Irish-Hawaiian-Greek-Japanese-Cherokee who somehow looks Puerto Rican, I applaud you Miss Patti.

June 26, 2012 at 10:22 am
(147) Juanita says:

I applaud this article greatly.

June 26, 2012 at 10:25 am
(148) Nepetarias says:

To Silvia or others who feel as she does: The solution is to not block anyone from any path or tradition. Each of us has to find a path we are comfortable with. I am not Native American, yet I follow that path (and include positive beliefs from other traditions) because my son and his father is Native American. I find that tradition closely resembles what I wish to believe.
I am a “melting pot” American, therefore have no one basis for my path. Therefore, I have taken positive traits from several paths and formed my own beliefs. I feel everyone is entitled to do the same as I have. Learn everything you can about several Traditions or paths, take the positive that suits your life and beliefs. No one has the right to say that anyone, no matter what race, sexual orientation, or creed, has to follow a certain belief. Everyone has to make up their own mind.

June 26, 2012 at 10:26 am
(149) camf says:

Well said Patti! I can’t believe this person claims to be Wiccan to start with!

June 26, 2012 at 10:27 am
(150) Denise the Paragnome says:

Patti – you are the hero of the day!!!!!! One of the things I like most about being a part the Pagan/Wiccan community is that we (as a whole) are very accepting of EVERYBODY!
Keep up the great work!!!!!

June 26, 2012 at 10:32 am
(151) William Cain says:

I found you to be outstanding, but I laughed at the ignorance of Sylvia. I found you answers to be most informative. I join the others who stand and applaud. Quoting you ‘Paganing while brown’ this cracked me up. I learned of the craft from a white person and we shared with many people from the spectrum of colours and I am truly blessed to have that experience. But seriously, she needs love and as much positive energy sent to her that she may learn from the error of her way and one day come to realize the true meaning of Paganism. Thanks so much for your help and guidance, it really helps me! Blessed Be!

June 26, 2012 at 10:36 am
(152) Jennifer says:

I loved your response to her racial retardedness. FU Silvia for being so close minded.

June 26, 2012 at 10:42 am
(153) Brian says:

Since i practice in solitude, i’m not directly affected by this issue. And the whole topic is extremely emotionally charged, also i’m not absolutely sure about the history, so i’m going to choose my words carefully.

The Celtic culture was one of white people, that’s true, so one can easily state that the roots of Wicca are exclusively white. However, meanwhile things have changed and Silvia, provided she lives in the US, should realize that her attitude can easily get her into trouble and thus, keep her opinion to herself or like–minded people because it’s simply against the law.

On the other hand, and this is not meant as an extenuation, there is a freedom for everyone now. Each person can choose their spouse, friends, employees, neighborhood etc. without being forced to pay attention to race. This freedom is nice and well for those who like it, but those who don’t wish to do so must also have the freedom to say no to contacts they don’t want for whatever reason since tolerance must apply for both directions.

In summary, wherever people come together they’re going to fight. Not necessarily about the race, but any other topic will do as well. Most of those fights are pointless and experience shows that people who speak their mind are only tolerated as long as it goes along with the general view. That’s why i prefer to practice in solitude. Group activities are not for everyone.

June 26, 2012 at 10:46 am
(154) silvergryphon says:

There is only one race….. the human race.

June 26, 2012 at 10:52 am
(155) Ronnie says:

i read this article it disgusts me what silvia said….if she knew anythig about wicca she’d know that it was a belief system that started before everything else….yes only recently becoming an actual religion….everyone who believes in nature and in magic celebrate wicca in one way or another….including voodoo….santeria….druidism….and witchcraft….im sure theres more….but all those celebrated by different races….wicca wasnt and will never be just for one race….silvia if you wanna celebrate something just for the whites join the kkk….youll fit right in as far as i saw….btw….im puertorrican and come from a long line of witches who’ve celebrated wicca long before you were born….and also id like to thank patti for clearing that up for true wiccans….keep up the good work and blessed be

June 26, 2012 at 11:01 am
(156) Barry says:

last time I looked this was not jet or life they have the race card covered. when a wight girl is miss black america then it is just strange.

June 26, 2012 at 11:12 am
(157) Matthew says:

I’m so glad to see you say this. I’ve been wiccan for a little more than 8 years, celebrated yule last year for the first time with several friends. Plus, I live out here in San Antonio, TX, where there aren’t a lot of white people, but I still had a hell of a great time. racism, exclusiveness and hate don’t belong in religion, it shouldn’t in any religion. Thanks for standing up for me and all of our fellow wiccan brothers and sisters!

June 26, 2012 at 11:18 am
(158) Su Hall says:

It is people like this Sylvia that keep segregation alive and miserably ‘well’. Your comment that there are other places on the internet for people like her is even frightful enough! In this day, there shouldn’t be any groups that exist because of their hate of others, but, alas, they do exist.

You handled the matter extremely eloquently. Unfortunately, this problem exists more than just here. Now, why does ‘Babel’ come to my mind?

Thank you for representing this community as you have! I am honored to be a part of it.

Su

June 26, 2012 at 11:19 am
(159) gypsy garnet says:

I am white british, but would never discriminate against any creed or colour wishing to become wiccan. These kinds of attitudes are hateful and distasteful to say the least, and people like that should be ashamed of themselves.

June 26, 2012 at 11:28 am
(160) Tamrha says:

Well said Patti!!*Applause!* In my coven and community, a person’s race and color has nothing whatsoever to do with their ability to circle with us or one day join the coven. In fact, we are incredibly enriched by their participation as well as the traditions we have looked to (like Voudon, Santeria, Espritismo) to add to our ways of practicing our Craft.
The closing line here is the best! I do hope the Universal 2×4 wakes Miss Syliva up some day, but if it doesn’t work its her own issue to work out!

June 26, 2012 at 11:30 am
(161) Bernadette says:

YAY Patti!
Where did this person get the notion that Wicca was a “White” religion? I am totally dumbfounded by this! As a High Priestess of a coven and a very large community, that consists of many different nationalities and races-I am mortified by this ignorant person! Wicca was inspired by many different types of spirituality…….Gerald Gardner would turn in his grave hearing this!

June 26, 2012 at 11:31 am
(162) Val says:

All Right, Patti!!!
U have made my day with your very astute comments!!!
This person obviously does not have a very educated mind or loving soul if she really believes the mindless drivel she wrote.
Hope we do not hear from her again.
Thank U for your continued knowledge and edification!!!
BB, Val

June 26, 2012 at 11:35 am
(163) Julie says:

If the world was all one color, we would all be very bored. Personally, I am glad that there are different cultures and different skin colors. I love the diversity of my other neighbors of many colors and many cultures. I am glad you called her on her junk.

I have many friends of many races and I enjoy being with all of them.

June 26, 2012 at 11:36 am
(164) Christina S says:

Love knows no Color, Race or religion! Kudos Patti!! Btw, im looking for a group to join in Washington State, does anyone know where I can look to find one?

June 26, 2012 at 11:37 am
(165) J.Ed says:

Hear,Hear!!

June 26, 2012 at 11:39 am
(166) Citroen says:

Well now, if she’s so concerned with her culture, she’s welcome to go back to wherever it’s from. The US doesn’t need bigots like her. Silvia, you don’t tell people what they’re “allowed” to do as though they’re little children. Be glad we haven’t met.

June 26, 2012 at 11:43 am
(167) Jacinth says:

This is so silly.

I see things from 2 sides on this commentary about a lady named Silvia……who now is classified as a racist by common vote. Firstly, Stonehenge would be located someplace else if it were not a European based religion. Which is the basis of Pagan as a religion. Have I been mistaken on this? Ummmm…no.

We should touch on this racism a little more though for arguments sake…..as an experiment:

How about putting on your finest velvet cloak with a candle in hand, and head into the nearest African American church or Muslim Mosque? After that, then head on over to the Baptist church. We want a report on that experience please. Your experience will be racist slammed into high gear without a doubt with stare down’s and non welcomers wondering what the hell you’re doing there. The Baptists being probably the scariest of them all. Point being, There still is and always will be segregation on religion. Everybody just wants to cry racism when they get the chance sadly. It’s all b.s. and it’s bad for ya. Always put the shoe on the other foot.

June 26, 2012 at 11:51 am
(168) Meadowhawk says:

Thank you Patti, for your wise thoughts and articulation.

June 26, 2012 at 11:52 am
(169) Lorraine says:

I applaud you, Patti for standing up for wat is right and just. As a mixed race Woman of Colour, I have so much respect or you and this community and an reminded once again why I feel so at home in the neopagan umbrella.

June 26, 2012 at 11:52 am
(170) Sharon says:

I have to say I agree with the original remark on a certain level. I have seen reverse discrimination in my lifetime and like you, I’m “as white as they come.” I have seen promotions take place based solely on race and a required quota, so to think that that doesn’t take place is slightly naive. However, I disagree that any spiritual path should be based on color AT ALL…spirit has no race.

June 26, 2012 at 11:54 am
(171) Allan says:

What, a George Wallace within our tiny frame of reference? Anybody to cordon off Santaria or Voudun?
I once had a roommate, a Rasta-Man from Canada, who set a fine example of swinging, liberated spirit. His framework had definitely taught him a far freer, more healthful way of life than out white, repressed key which battles with Todestrieb and the Superego. Am I to “convert”? Of course not, I work from where I am.
Thanks,
Allan

June 26, 2012 at 11:59 am
(172) Marion says:

Hi Patricia and everyone else,
I agree with you Patricia, let the door hit her in the ass and in the head. Our tradition to me sayes nothing about this is only for one race. Its a believe system not a predudicial religion. Shame on that woman. She may have some people agreeing with her, but im obset that these thoughts even come up these days. Maybe she should learn more about wicca before she restricts it to anybody. Marion

June 26, 2012 at 12:04 pm
(173) Dallben says:

Wicca/Paganism is the great melting pot of all religions. Nowhere else in all the world will one find such a mixed blend of beliefs. While women/men, LGBT/straight, and other diverse cross-sections may need their own space, from time to time, to explore the mystery of their life journeys together the very nature of trans-global polytheism and diversification of cultures prohibits race as a determining factor for special covens/circles/groves. If one wants such a group there are plenty of places to go to find it. But not in this religion.

June 26, 2012 at 12:08 pm
(174) Gwn says:

Dear Sylvia apparently you have not read or follow the Wiccan Rede.
One of the many things I have encountered on my own path is people who want to be Pagans and Witches usually for the wrong reasons. Wicca is a calling, it is who we are no matter the color of our skin or our origins. It speaks to our heart and our soul. We breathe it every day and we share its lessons with those who wish to know more.
The last line of the Rede states “An Ye Harm None, Do What Ye Will”. This means that each of us has the free will to do what we wish as long as it does not harm another. Harming another can also be done with words. In as much as your statement states only “white folks”; truly there is no such thing, as we all are a mixture of many races and many cultures. We are all equal in the eyes of the Goddess and the God no matter the color of our skin. You need to re-examine your origins and who you are before you pass judgment on the rest of the world. You need to broaden your mind and not be afraid to admit being wrong or embracing things which are foreign to you. Facing one’s fears will open doors to enlightenment, understanding and acceptance. I think you need to read it and re-read it because it speaks to who you claiming you are.

June 26, 2012 at 12:18 pm
(175) Janis says:

On behalf on the Venezuelan Pagan Community I thank you for your response to this racist and sad remark. There are wiccans now all over the world and most of us feel part of a brotherhod and sisterhood that celebrates unity in the diversity and in our worship of nature. Merry blessings from Venezuela and from our Goddess Yara*

*(lady of the jungle also known as queen Maria Lionza as a mixed blood venezuelan-indigenous-european goddess.)

June 26, 2012 at 12:21 pm
(176) BARRETT says:

SILVIA IS, UNFORTUNATELY, ONE OF THE BIG PROBLEMS THAT THIS COUNTRY HAS AT THIS TIME. SHE IS PROBABLY ONE OF THE RACIST REPUBLICAN TEA PARTY!
I NEVER IMAGINED HOW RACIST PEOPLE HERE ARE UNTIL WE HAPPILY ELECTED OUR FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT! FROM DAY ONE THE RACIST REPUBLICANS SAID THEIR MAIN MISSION WAS TO REMOVE HIM FROM OFFICE! YOU CAN THANK THESE PEOPLE FOR SOOO MANY OF THE PROBLEMS THIS COUNTRY IS IN AT THIS MOMENT IN TIME! THEY AND THEIR KIND HAVE TAKEN THIS NATION BACKWARDS TO A PLACE OF HATRED AND BIGOTRY! SHE PROBABLY HATES GAY PEOPLE TOO….SHE IS FOLLOWING THE PATTERN PERFECTLY!
I HOPE THE WICCAN COMMUNITY WILL STAND FIRM IN REELECTING OUR BLACK PRESIDENT AND SHOW THESE RACIST REPUBLICANS OUT THE CLOSEST DOOR WITH A SWIFT KICK ON THE WAY!
PLEASE EXCUSE MY CAPS, BUT I HAVE BAD EYESIGHT AND THIS HELPS ME TYPE.

June 26, 2012 at 12:33 pm
(177) LJRich says:

White people have NO PLACE they can experience their cultures and ancestors?!

I guess Sylvia has never picked up a book and has also never been to any pagan type events, has she?

Asatru is a religion for white people. Specifically, white Scandinavians. Some clans discriminate, some clans don’t, but it’s a largely white religion.

Anglo Saxon Heathenry is a religion for white Germanics, as is Urglaawe for the Pennsylvania Germans. Nothing is wrong with practicing a white religion for your cultural heritage, just like nothing’s wrong with not doing so……Sylvia.

Then we have Suomenusko for the Finnish.

Dear Sylvia, Please buy a clue before you open your mouth and shove your foot down your throat again.

Wicca should be for anyone who wishes to practice it, for many reasons that I doubt Miss Sylvia could grasp. Good grief.

June 26, 2012 at 12:41 pm
(178) Ulliowl says:

Cheers for you Patti! Well, said.

June 26, 2012 at 12:46 pm
(179) Annamarie says:

Wooo hooo! Way to go Patti! I love that most of the pagan community that I have met is INCLUSIVE rather than exclusive. I love the diversity and I love that my kids get to meet all different people!

June 26, 2012 at 12:48 pm
(180) krissy says:

White supremacists need to spread their toxic segregating stench on everything. This is what norse and asatru groups have been dealing with lately. Its just a new way to demonize and divide the pagan community.

June 26, 2012 at 12:49 pm
(181) CJ says:

You were very right to call this person out! I believe that we as pagans should set an example of tolerance, since that is one of our fundamental beliefs! After all, our true color isn’t on the outside at all :)
Blessed Be to All

June 26, 2012 at 12:51 pm
(182) Ulliowl says:

Cheers to you Patti. I ca not believe that she considers herself Wiccan, when tolerance and allowing each to their own path are cornerstones of Wicca.

June 26, 2012 at 12:55 pm
(183) Krystal says:

They say that you’ve got to stand for something, or you will fall for anything…

Thank you Patti for standing up, because as you said…”This is one of those times”…

Well done, Well Said and to the point…

Blessed Be

June 26, 2012 at 12:56 pm
(184) DanaDB59 says:

HEAR HEAR Patti…could not have put it any better myself!! Our Pagan/Wiccan traditions are as DIVERSE as those who follow them…as is SHOULD BE!!!

June 26, 2012 at 12:59 pm
(185) Auspicious Kitten says:

Are you feeling the love yet from your Wiccan brothers and sisters yet, Sylvia? No? Maybe the Klan has a nice all white coven you can join, it sounds like that is where you belong…. ya know… with morons.

June 26, 2012 at 1:13 pm
(186) pamela shaw says:

This “person” is not a true Wiccan but she is a total bigot. Bravo Patti and shame on you Silvia! She is a disgrace to all Wiccans.

June 26, 2012 at 1:18 pm
(187) Kat says:

Well said Patti…In this day and age…really?!…thought that attitude when out years ago. Silvia needs to get a life….

June 26, 2012 at 1:31 pm
(188) Adnyl Sylene says:

Not only are all other people from all other walks of life, color, creed, etc, welcome in Wicca – but they are also welcome in my home. Whomever thinks this otherwise is not walking the path of Wicca – pagans. The idea that Wiccans should be bigotted, biased and exclusionary, have got to rework their thinking processes. We are all part of the God/Goddess plan, all of us!

We can learn so much from other walks of life. I am proud to say I have friends of every persuasion including Gay/Lesbian/Transgendered, Bisexual. And I don’t care what they are – they are welcome, both in my home and in my pagan community. I just finished picking up at the airport and delivering a friend back to her car at my home, who is BLACK and she’s such a beautiful person. She’s a member of my circle and I’m glad she is. I am the reason she is a member of my circle, because I OPENED THE DOOR! She wouldn’t have joined us if not for my opening the door. And there are several others and they too are welcome. I HATE BIGOTS! I will not tolerate intolerance towards others!

June 26, 2012 at 1:41 pm
(189) Tricia LymeMom says:

Wow Patti! I had no idea you had the power to bring down an entire religion with one opinion…can you fix the medical system too? I am truly in awe ;-)

Excellent response. Wicca is about as inclusive as it gets…how many have a relationship with Egyptian deity (for example only)? Last I checked, there was a pretty big difference between Egyptian and Celtic complexions. The point is, spiritual connections are just that…spiritual. Skin has nothing to do with anything.

I think Silvia needs to go back and revisit her Wicca 101 lessons. Mind you, if she’s threatening to leave, Wicca is probably a lot better off without her.

June 26, 2012 at 2:15 pm
(190) Luna WolfDragon says:

As a White woman, at least Silvia has a way to find out her cultural and ancestral heritage. Heck, I bet she knows it quite well. As an African-American, however, written knowledge of my family only goes so far; the only clue that I have about my ancestry is the color of my skin. So to base my pagan practices on that wouldn’t really work. Plus, my ancestry is rather muddled (I somehow have a common Korean last name).

I was taught that all religions, all the gods and goddesses, were paths to divinity. If ancestry is a factor in your worship, that’s cool; its a wonderful way to connect to your heritage (assuming that you know it). But it is beyond ignorant when, in a religion that welcomes all paths and in fact, encourages others to find their own path, that one should be “expected” to follow a certain one because they are of a certain race. I don’t have to worship African deities any more than a German has to worship Germanic deities.

June 26, 2012 at 2:15 pm
(191) Jill H says:

Well said Patti! Clearly this person is missing one of the great joys of being Wiccan – accepting other people. If this is her way of thinking, perhaps there are other groups she could join? Did she seriously become Wiccan because she thought there would only be “white folks”?

June 26, 2012 at 2:21 pm
(192) Silvia says:

Response from SILVIA:
Hello to all. Wow, I am like a start today! I have never experienced so much attention to my words and such a strong dislike to my person!

The only thing I am left to say is this MANTRA:

“Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.”

“The Netherlands and Belgium are more crowded than Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.”

“Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.”

“What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?”

“How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?”

“And how long would it take any sane black person to notice this and what kind of psycho wouldn’t object to this?”

“But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.”

“They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.”

“Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.”

June 26, 2012 at 2:28 pm
(193) Anita says:

Well Said!!!

June 26, 2012 at 2:37 pm
(194) Paul says:

people here need to educate themselves about the realities of life. to start watch this video:

video

June 26, 2012 at 2:48 pm
(195) Truthseeker says:

The sad sorry fact is that Wicca and paganism is just like everything else- there are good people and there are bad ones as well. When my husband realized I was studying Wicca he was concerned. He said, “Are you going to become a practicing Wiccan!?” I told him yes, that I am already a witch and he said “No you aren’t, witches are bad.” I told him that no they aren’t , and that REAL witches do not believe in harming people. (I knew that was not strictly true but…) His answer was that yes there Are bad witches just like there are bad christians. He made my point FOR me and the issue was settled. That point applies here too. I am appalled by Sylvia’s comments. I left christianity for paganism and wicca because of the love and tolerance taught in them and found that while the teachings are more loving and tolerant, the actual PEOPLE are not always. It is sad but true, but these people do NOT have the loving spirit that I, personally, believe it is all about.
Bravo Patti for the stand you have taken. *****APPLAUSE******

June 26, 2012 at 2:50 pm
(196) bjrussell says:

I don’t often have the time to read your blog as often as I would like to read it, but this article just caught my eye. It truly saddens me to see someone use the idea of a religion or worship and then profess such bigotry. This is the face of true ignorance. We are being bombarded with political hate messages and outright lies that blame the shortcomings of our economy and current government on racial bigotry. Our President is treated with extreme disrespect and “Illegal aliens” are made the scapegoat for taking our jobs and using our services such as Medicaid when in truth it was the bankers, financial leaders, Big Business and the Rethuglicans that were responsible for this economic mess and most of America is just to lazy to look past the lies of FOX News to see the truth.

June 26, 2012 at 3:04 pm
(197) Becca says:

I must say Silvia and Paul’s comments have left me scratching my head. Wiccans and Pagans (granted you may be racist, and that is one of the things you should work to let go of) have the goal of striving towards loving and accepting all. Is not one of the main beliefs of Paganism that the divine is present in all of us? Aren’t we all children of the same divine source? Furthermore, race means nothing! We are all the same species. Race is merely pigmentation in the skin. Take a colony of caucasions to the equator and let them replicate for several thousand years. Likelihood is that their skin will begin to get darker and their body structure will slightly change to adapt to area they are living in. All color is is protection from UV rays. Evolution shows the homo sapiens originated in Africa anyways.
Blessed be. I hope you open your heart up to truly practicing your faith.

June 26, 2012 at 3:06 pm
(198) me says:

I do agree with going up against this jackass of a woman and bravo for doing so but your statements surprised me very much and I am insulted:

“In the United States, white people are the majority – those of us who are white enjoy a privilege that our neighbors and family members who are Not White will never experience.”

This is arrogant and degrading to others of various nationalities.

Umm I am privileged, parents paid for my education until I graduated from college, I have always lived very well, parents were professional, I’m an professional etc..
Family or myself have never been stopped by the cops or thrown out of restaurants lol in the past or present.

I can assure you others have not experienced this either.
I’m not saying it hasn’t happened but you speak as if those who are non-white should and will experience this disgusting act of racialism in our lives on a daily ..ahh no.

You say you will never face bigotry the way others have…are you sure?
I mean bigotry can happen to anyone including Caucasians and has I’ve witnessed it myself.
I always felt since this the USA is a melting pot there is no need to think one race was more superior, so no I am not 2nd class to anyone. Please don’t consider me the minority.
Who would be that naive to actually think non-whites are not experiencing the privileged life

You have insulted Non-Caucasian, MGM, Bi-Racial, Caucasian people with that one statement .

We should all be careful how we speak of ourselves and others because sometimes you tend to do more harm than good!
We are all equal this should always be remembered!

June 26, 2012 at 3:21 pm
(199) Allison says:

Thank you Patti!!! I treat everyone with respect no matter what thier race, creed, color, religion, etc may be….which is what I thought was part of being Pagan or Wiccan….RESPECT for all living creatures ESPECIALLY other human beings!! Guess that chick should find another path!!

June 26, 2012 at 3:36 pm
(200) Tricia LymeMom says:

“I have never experienced so much attention to my words…” …Silvia may have a point there. I believe that she never has had such attention and is probably quite enjoying it.

I hope that some day Silvia wakes up and gets her head out of the sand…or stops trolling.

So many wonderful points have been expressed and it’s so nice to see so many people who believe racism is wrong.

I wish everyone a rainbow of blessings…I’m off to focus my energies on something more productive than feeding an ego.

June 26, 2012 at 3:38 pm
(201) Mary Axford says:

Wonderful post, Patti, Brava!
Part of the beauty of Paganism is its diversity of traditions. If i were black, I might be drawn to one of the traditional African religions such as Yoruba. But I have also found that certain deities resonate with me, and not all of them are Western European like my ancestors. I’ve felt drawn to Inanna, Athena, ManannŠn mac Lir, Kwan Yin, Yemoja, St. Nicholas/Santa Claus. Even Kali felt right once in a situation when performing ritual for a child’s safe return, and once had a contact with the Baron.

So no one should say what tradition is right – we are each our own tradition.

Besides, yeah, Silvia is just simply clueless (really? White people oppressed? In what universe?) and offensive.

June 26, 2012 at 3:44 pm
(202) Kassam1976 says:

Thank you Patti for a nice rebuttal. Silvia must be a very unhappy person and needs our good thoughts and wishes to help her.

June 26, 2012 at 3:50 pm
(203) sparrow says:

Overall, I think you handled this situation very well. However one line kind of bugged me. “In the United States, white people are the majority – those of us who are white enjoy a privilege that our neighbors and family members who are Not White will never experience.” I don’t know where in the US you live, but that’s not what it’s like where I am. In my area white people are the minority. In fact, we’re discriminated against. My school has clubs and awards for Latinos, Asians, Pacific Islanders, and African Americans, but nothing for the white student. I brought that up once and I got stared at like I was insane.
Please don’t act like just because I’m white I can’t be discriminated against. As long as people treat different races differently, some one’s going to suffer. In this case, it just happens to be white people.

June 26, 2012 at 3:59 pm
(204) Hazel Wolf says:

Too true! I’m so glad you posted this. It is weird, because witches have received so much racism from other people, how can anyone be so racist towards people of the same faith?!

June 26, 2012 at 4:00 pm
(205) Sulin says:

I couldn’t have said it better myself Patty!!!!!!!

June 26, 2012 at 4:04 pm
(206) Elzbet Whitefire says:

How disturbing to see this ugly little blemish on the path I so love.
As a Coven High Priestess and CEO of an organization working for spiritual equality for all paths it frustrates me to see that this is still an attitude held by some in our numbers.
Our organization has members from all walks of life, every race, age, social class,political background and religious upbringing,
we are only limited by our requirement that new members need be over 18 to join unless they have parental permission. (Unfortunately we have run into difficulties with parents claiming we are recruiting their children.)
My personal Coven is an eclectic mixture of age, color and background. Our members include 18-50 year olds, black, mexican, native americans, blonds, italians, college educated, high school drop-outs, single parents, married couples, one member who is married to someone outside the path, cat lovers, dog people, ex Catholics, Christians, Jews even a few members who are bi-sexual and guess what?
We are all of like mind. We are a family. Closer to each other than we have ever been to any other group or organization.
I am proud of my “Family” and blessed to be in their service. I only wish that others who come into this path are able to find such open and accepting groups.
So Silvia, look around you may find a group of bigoted, white, middle aged, narrow minded, closed individuals. Just do the rest of us a huge favor: if you attend an open ritual or Moot and you see the likes of my organization or Coven walk in do the adult thing and excuse yourself. Just walk away and allow us to share, worship and connect in an atmosphere of true perfect love and perfect trust.

I hope you find what you are looking for and leave the rest of us out of it. Bright blessings to your hearth and heart!

June 26, 2012 at 4:11 pm
(207) Maggie says:

Bravo Patti!
She needed a good lesson to be taught to her, evidently she is in the dark sorta, or has had problems in the past for her to have this point of view.
I hope she sees the “light” and finds the truth
Goddess Help her!

June 26, 2012 at 4:19 pm
(208) Maely says:

Is there a ‘like’ button for Patti’s response? Hope ‘silvia’s’ never made a vodoo doll, or a ushapte, or called on Isis because those ain’t for white people! (being purely sarcastic – I’m white)

June 26, 2012 at 4:20 pm
(209) SallyJ says:

Thank you Patti! I suppose that I shouldn’t be surprised that racism pervades everywhere but I had thought that the Wiccan traditions were essentially about valuing people and the environment we are blessed to have around us. What a sad sad women, I will send her healing thoughts in hope that this response helps her to reflect on her path x

June 26, 2012 at 4:42 pm
(210) Paul says:

I just want you to know I am very new to this, not deeply in to it yet, but I really feel sorry for someone so narrow minded. Maybe she would like to join the Klan, oh that’s right, they are kind of not inclined to allow women in their ranks, are they? Your answer was perfect Patti, thanks!!!

June 26, 2012 at 4:52 pm
(211) Cheryl Lynn Sherman says:

Hello Patti,
Thanks for this column.

The census is showing that white people are no longer the majority in America and as a Heinz 57 European white that puts me at the low end of the racial totem pole. Whites don’t have a ‘place’ to ‘feel’ white pride, and if we did we would be called racist, interesting! Then again why would I even be interested in ‘white pride’? Why are other ethnic groups interested in any kind of racial pride? Personally, I have never understood the need for that, because I have always thought that we are all simply a part of the human race.

I don’t respect or disrespect people because of their race, but for their character. If a person has a poor character, I stay clear of them no matter what their race.

If brown, black, yellow, red or white people don’t like Wicca, so be it! I am a Witch. I will continue to practice magick, be in the Coven of my choice and enjoy my solitary esbat and sabbat times also. If someone else of another race doesn’t approve of me or my spiritual path, they have that freedom (as long as we have our constitution here in the USA). We are all free to practice where our hearts take us. I am thankful for that, even if as a white, I am now in the minority!

Blessed Be!

June 26, 2012 at 5:16 pm
(212) The Spiral Mom says:

Yay Patti!

June 26, 2012 at 5:24 pm
(213) Craftywytch says:

Way to go, Patti. I always thought Wicca was about tolerance. That is one of the reasons I felt called to Wicca. I am mixed as well – English, Irish, Scot, German, and Cherokee Indian – proud of my heritage.

June 26, 2012 at 5:31 pm
(214) Sharon says:

Silvia is a very sad and lonesome person WIccan is a world wide religion, she is having a laugh or she is not with it.

June 26, 2012 at 5:31 pm
(215) eileen dailey says:

What color is the Goddess? I always picture her as a rainbow being. It is every American’s (and I assume the writer is American) right to practice any religion that they choose! Remember “Do what you will but harm none.” The writer and those who agree with her or him are sadly in need of some basic spirituality. I would recommend reading “The Shack” ASAP

June 26, 2012 at 5:36 pm
(216) Lord Archaeus says:

Wicca has always been predominantly white because of it’s heredity white European ancestry. And though most doors have been opened to minorities will you find most group exclusively white. Granted there are always exception. Just as in true Voodoo will it be found predominantly black with far fewer whites. Where sometimes the way things are are just a “just is” of which people need to be honest about while grandstanding publicly in seeking more attention for themselves. – Blessed Be

June 26, 2012 at 5:49 pm
(217) Merri says:

Thank you Patti. I forget that there are people like Silvia and I need to be reminded myself that they exist. I would just like to point out to Silvia and all others who follow her philosophy, that Wicca is about unity and that we are all ONE. If you missed that somehow Silvia, which is hard to imagine if you really are practicing Wicca as you seem to suggest, you really aren’t worthy to celebrate the tradition alongside your black brothers and sisters. I feel sad for you Silvia that you are so full of hatred and harm towards others. I feel sad that you have paraded yourself as a Wiccan, which is none of these things.

June 26, 2012 at 5:54 pm
(218) SlopsyDoodle says:

Evolution can happen in the same instance as a clear minded heartfelt epiphany from our own personal & collective experiences. It is our choice to walk the path of consciousness with this legacy of Love & borrowed provisions or push the power down to validate an ego while spreading a void of everything that Light & Life thrive from. What do we ultimately wish to accomplish and how do we thoroughly convey that through our actions & intentions? All paths lead to our Great Mother/Father which we embody every second of every movement. When we become angry or rubbed wrong by someone what we are really upset with is the inability to simply connect with a conscious mind when there is a blockage without having to humbly evaluate our own method of conveying our source of wisdom and/or agenda. I Hope Silvia can move past her blockages, as I do for myself & everyone in order to see the Grand Vision… one sentient being at a time <3

June 26, 2012 at 6:04 pm
(219) Jadetatsu says:

Itís really sad when a person defines a religion, any religion as being black and white. Iím black and Iíve been Wiccan for 30 years. When she reads this sheíll probably have heart attack LOL

June 26, 2012 at 6:12 pm
(220) Andy says:

words were once said that all men were created equal .

June 26, 2012 at 6:20 pm
(221) James Byrne says:

The reason there are not many africans involved in neopaganism is they dont all have stockholm syndrome. Read
WITCHCRAFT, ORACLES AND MAGIC AMONG THE AZANDE its an early ethnography from when parts of the congo and central africa was being colonised by Britain. Its easy to read and I think will show a reader how the germanic club tradition (the cultural trait that gave masonry and neopaganism its start and its form today, not to mention its core structure) was not innate to Zande culture and how its introduction changed it. In the process creating a more stratified society and undermining cultural roles resulting in an increase in fractured disfunctional communities. IMO only someone who puts very little value on their culture, the history of their people and the current state of africa would embrace a germanic trad.

Thats why there are so few africans and thats why someone who embraces a germanic tradition has every right to complain. Historically those trads have nothing to do with africa and are only destructive to both the trad and african culture.

Course that means youd have to go past the PC bullcrap innate in a culture that also assumes that someone who has a darker skin tone then them is ‘african american’. Skin tone does not indicate any cultural traits exist, to suggest otherwise is racist. DOnt believe me, ask an african what they think of african americans.

Probably a lot less then I think of Irish Americans being from Ireland… and thats not much at all.

June 26, 2012 at 6:31 pm
(222) Andy says:

The Goddess and God do not care what color you are .

June 26, 2012 at 6:34 pm
(223) Raime says:

the way i see it, the ONLY difference between white & any other darker colored skinned people is, they can tolerate more sun exposure then me! seems like God/dess had a plan when creating humans different colors. the hotter the climate (like africa, egypt, south america etc) the darker the skin. the colder the climate, the whiter they got. with the invention of boats cars planes etc people became able to move around the world. I can go out in the sun & in 2 hours be beet red from sunburn, my hispanic mixed grand daughter does the same thing & the darker her skin gets without the burn!

I think if you want all white, or all black go back to christianity. Its been awhile, but i have yet to be at a church that wasnt all white or all black. even hispanic christians usually have their own buldings of worship.

Wicca follows one rule, harm NONE. doesnt say, do not harm white people, but everyone else its cool if ya do! NONE means NONE. Careful what ya say Sylvia, your next life you may be black to pay off the racist karma!

June 26, 2012 at 7:16 pm
(224) Susan Shelley says:

I agree with you tongue lashing to Silvia. I was raised to judge a person by who they are, not what they look like. I long for the day that race no longer matters to people. But being white does not eliminate you from being judged by your color. I’m a southern girl. Born and living in the beautiful state of Georgia. When I married my daughter’s father, he and I both already had a child. My son was 7, his was 6. His son, Brandon, was mixed. It never was, or has been an issue with me. I fell in love with Brandon immediately and got him to spend time with me and my son. A lot of the time we would have my nieces and nephew with us. I love Brandon. He is 30 years old now, and although I’m no longer with his father, he still calls me Momma. And I still call him mine. But when he was little and I would take all the kids out, it wasn’t the whites who gave me a hard time because he was mixed. It was the blacks. “why is he calling you Momma?” demanded over and over. My answer was always “because he’s my son”. I had my tires slashed, My car egged, my yard set on fire. And they made sure I knew who did it. I was constantly being punished because I loved a child, who just happened to be mixed. So sad. It didn’t stop me from getting my son. Ever. I am now a proud MawMaw, and I love my grandbabies, just like I love my son Brandon.

June 26, 2012 at 7:20 pm
(225) Nakhash Mekashefah says:

Wow. Wonder how she feels about us Judeo-pagan Jewitches.

June 26, 2012 at 7:23 pm
(226) LazyWitch says:

Thank you Patti! I must agree.

To Sylvia – Get a life. Stop drinking the kool-aid and move to one of the eastern Blue (Republican) states. (I apoligize to all my intellegient Republican Sisters and Brothers out there).

Our society is such a combination of races and religions, we cannot be seperated. I pray to the Great Goddess that you are never in a situation where your life depends on someone of a different race. You’ll expire while yelling, “No, No, No, I don’t want or need your help!”

Good luck Sylvia, I hope you find your “All White Island”!

June 26, 2012 at 7:30 pm
(227) Tommy says:

If you are white and you haven’t been singled out because of you color in America, I would have to say that you don’t get around much or you stay in a (mostly) white circles.
I think I know how Sylvia feels.
I think too that the reason why people become solitary in thier path is because of our differences, not because of what we have in common.
This is a common reaction to taking a change and saying what you fill.
May the circle be open yet unbroken, May the love of the Goddess be in the hearts of those that who seek the truth of thier Goddess/Gods

June 26, 2012 at 7:37 pm
(228) Joy says:

It’s sad, but ignorant people exist in all areas of society and all religions and faiths. If the lady wants an “all white” group to hand with, I’m pretty sure the KKK is still open for business. Wicca is a beautiful path that embraces all people, and its deepest premise is love. I can only hope that the lady who wrote these comments will someday experience the grace given to her by a non-white person. Then perhaps she will be so touched that she has a change of heart. Until then, I feel badly for her, and particularly the experience(s) she’s had in life that are her reason(s) for her sense of superiority, exclusivity, prejudice. Because those experiences certainly must not have been pleasant – otherwise she wouldn’t have such a bitter and hardened heart. Well… it’s comforting to know that folks like her are few and far between, and the vast majority of Wiccans and Pagans are loving, accepting, non-judgemental people. And that’s just one of many reasons why I love this Path.

June 26, 2012 at 7:41 pm
(229) Stormy says:

Patti,

Brava! Nicely said.

Sylvia,

Did you know that the Nazis of WWII had a Pagan religion? It included marginalization and exterminitation of minorities.

Wicca is is built upon ‘Perfect Love and Perfect Trust’ and the Rede’s Do As You Will So Long As You Harm None. You and the Nazis may be Pagan, but you are not Wiccan.

I require all of my Circle to recite the Rede and, before the Lady and the Lord, promise to honor the Rede in all things prior to participating in my Circle. I am sorry my dear, but you and all like you may not join my Circle. Your bigotry by it’s very nature Harms Others and results in negative energy which effects those around you.

I do wish you well and hope that you can overcome this White’s only perspective. I would suggest that you avoid tracing your heritage as there are very few totally white folks in America today.

Stormy)O(

June 26, 2012 at 7:44 pm
(230) Kim W says:

THANK YOU Patti! I am so glad to see someone of the dominant American culture and in your position of visibility acknowledge that the White Knapsack of Privilege. As an Eclectic Pagan of color, I do sometimes feel a bit distanced from other Pagans and Wiccans, because some are only looking at how their religion ties in with their heritage instead of how Paganism and Wicca can be paths for ANYONE.

I wonder if those who would exclude non-whites and feel non-whites are stealing their religion are even aware that as minorities in America who can barely trace our heritage most of us HAVE ALREADY HAD OUR HERITAGE AND RELIGION STOLEN FROM US. I cannot pinpoint what African nation I came from, where my White ancestors came from or what part of the Cherokee Nation I am descended from.

That commentor needs to feel grateful that she can trace her heritage, sympathy for those who can not do the same, and an open-mindedness towards those who are lead to Paganism or Wicca.

June 26, 2012 at 7:50 pm
(231) Disappointed Pagan says:

Obviously Sylvia struck a cord for you Patti, but this excessive trashing of Sylvia seems a bit harsh. Everyone comments the “harm none” yet that is what all of you are doing to Silvia! She is entitled to her views and opinions just as the rest of us, even if her views are construed as warped. Free will and free thought is what makes us unique, and as Pagan, that is one of the things that sets us aside from the faux Christians out there-the fact the usually we respect others opinions and allow them to be voiced without sending out the lynch mob like everyone has done here! Patti, I usually love your views and approach, but fear you’ve started a riot over poor Sylvia’s feelings of wanting to claim something for herself. Yes, Sylvia’s approach or wording wasn’t the best, but with such a short answer, we didn’t truly get the full picture from her and instead of trying to guide her with wisdom and showing the misconceptions she has voiced, Patti you basically tied her to the stake & handed all your readers lit matches. Have we not learned from the past? Are we not supposed to “harm none?” Why start such a riot instead of helping someone whom is clearly confused?

June 26, 2012 at 7:51 pm
(232) Disappointed Pagan says:

(cont) Applaud her for wanting to have something to call her own, then gently remind her of what being Pagan (& Wiccan) really means. Give her the benefit of the doubt that her wording wasn’t complete or exactly what she meant. (We’ve ALL said things that came out wrong and not exactly what we meant now haven’t we?????) We shouldn’t “kick her out of the club” for wanting to have something that belongs to her special heritage in her mind, we should be guiding her down the correct path of what Paganism truly is! Show her the beauties in viewing the world and all it’s wonderful colors and cultures-remind her that being united as a Pagan/Wiccan goes beyond the skin and history of where one’s from. Be proud of who you are & where you’ve come from but keep an open mind as you step into the future. Want to share your religion with anyone and everyone who’s willing to listen & open their mind to it & be proud of your new extended family of all races and creeds. Why not this approach?? I’m used to the typical hypocritical Christian, but this is a new one for me coming from a Pagan. We need all the brothers & sisters we can get!!!

June 26, 2012 at 7:59 pm
(233) EbonyGoddess says:

While I’m in full agreement with Patti’s post, some of the comments have left me cold:

“The reason there are not many africans involved in neopaganism is they dont all have stockholm syndrome.” [Neo/paganism is rooted in African doctrine.]

“Itís a good thing my big beautiful black goddess and asian god and their bi-racial mexican baby god love you Sylvia, becuase itíll take a while for me to get around to it.” [You are all over the place and admittedly full of hate, which makes you no better than Sylvia.]

“It doesnít require a whole religion, but I can agree with the need for sometimes a white space just like I could for a black space or a gay space or a male space or a female space to try to figure out what you are with those of your own kind.” [See Jim Crow Laws]

Wow, you guys. Seriously? I chose this path because not only did it speak louder to me than Christianity (by which I was raised) but also because of the open-mindedness of its followers. I understand that their are exceptions to every rule, but could the subject at hand and the three comments quoted above, PLEASE take the time to do your research before making such asinine statements calling for a huge response and possible division in a beautiful community.

That being said, I love each and everyone of you and I wish you bright blessings.

June 26, 2012 at 8:16 pm
(234) James Byrne says:

“Did you know that the Nazis of WWII had a Pagan religion? It included marginalization and exterminitation of minorities.”

Bwaaahahahahahaha WHAT!?

The nazi party were protestants look up the german faith movement.

If they were pagans why did they persicute them? The OTO that influenced the creation of wicca began in germany and austria in the late 19th century (Yeah wicca isnt ancient after all) but only exists today because foreign chapters survived. The Nazi’s wiped out every other form of religion and every secret society that they could… including freemasonry and the OTO. They even jailed people for just being associated with aleister crowley.

Man really do some research before you type stuff like that. It isnt just embarassing to you it makes neopagans look like bimbos. WW2 is a fairly well known part of history.

June 26, 2012 at 8:22 pm
(235) James Byrne says:

Ebony goddess Neopaganism provably began in europe in the late 19th century. It has no relation to the continent of africa or any african culture at all. That you even say it does means you either have no understanding of neopaganism or no understanding of any african culture at all. I recommend you read the book I quoted or even watch the youtube vid based on it, its a famous.

Also hang your head in shame.

June 26, 2012 at 8:25 pm
(236) Kyan says:

I agree with patti 100% my boyfriend and I have been in a relationship as a same sex couple for five years now! He is a devoted Christian and I am Wiccan. We both respect each others beliefs and we talk to teach each other about our beliefs so we both understand what he believes and I believe. The weird thing is, he attends circle with me and interacts in the ritual and he feels more accepted with us wiccans rather than other Christians. Thankfully not all of his Christian friends but some question his choice of dating a Wiccan which is not of their god! He has never heard that from a Wiccan/pagan.

In saying this maybe she should change her opinion to heterosexual white people only in Wicca because she sounds like an ignorant person still living in 1909!

Keep up the good work

June 26, 2012 at 8:47 pm
(237) Mitra says:

Maybe Sylvia, needs to hang out at a hot dog stand, or eat a slice of apple pie, then she can get all fuzzie about white pride.
If you were to look at stats, most people have a mix in them or in their family. And, so what! We are a Country of many people, and all coming from Original peoples somewhere. Original peoples were pagans. Only after Jesus died(AD) did we have non pagan religions.
Original peoples were of all colors and shades.
Imagine people, our people of all colors, united for peace, freedom, freedom to unite, freedom of religon, justice, equality, sustainability, mindfulness, instead of this negative stuff. It hurts to know that this even exists in our brightly colored community. Peace at you Sylvia. May you learn to love all people.
BB, Velvet

June 26, 2012 at 9:17 pm
(238) Les says:

This Silvia person seems to have a few loose bolts. There is no precedence for followers of Wicca to have racially select groups. Although I have been a Reconstruction pagan for many years, my Wiccan friends seem to be some of the most non-racial, nonjudgmental, loving people there are.

Some Wiccan circles and pagan groves may be disingenuously restrictive to sexual orientation (e.g. heterosexual or feminists only) but these are thankfully, the exception and not the rule. Adding racial restrictions and hate to the mix only to serves to make it much harder to overcome public confusion with the Wiccan path and gives lie to love is the law.

What this woman has said is shameful and dispicable. and potentially could harm the Craft after folks have worked so hard to educate the public about the pagan path.

June 26, 2012 at 9:18 pm
(239) greenspryte says:

Great job Patti, take a bow! Some people just floor me. Yes it could be someone just trying to incite things but way to many people are just ignorant and bigoted in all walks of life.
Religion is a choice for any adult. Faith comes from within and we are all free to chose. Some may not believe they have a choice, but they do.

June 26, 2012 at 9:45 pm
(240) SweetMtSue says:

Even Forrest Gump knew “Stupid is as Stupid does!” Silvia is obviously inteligence challenged! Your response was perfect & I’d rather not have her as a fellow Wiccan anywhere near me! I hope she progresses & learns a better way after her comments, blessed be to all!

June 26, 2012 at 10:14 pm
(241) Fred says:

I was called to the Wiccan path some five years ago. It’s a path that I feel and live every day. I chose a solitary path. It was and remains the right choice for me. I feel it and live it every day, in my heart, in my mere existence.

I’m truly saddened that a fellow seeker feels such bigotry. My Wicca knows no color, no boundaries of any kind. I feel it’s a way of life, not just something you practice once a week.

I’m classified by society in general as White, but I find the term offensive personally. I’m a human being, not a White person. As McCauley Caulkin (sp) said in my favorite Michael Jackson videos, “I’m not going to spend my life being a color.”

Every morning I pour my heart out when I come before the Blessed Mother, humble and contrite, to thank her for all her divine intercessions in my life and ask for nothing.

I will think of you, Sylvia, when I come before the Blessed Mother and ask that she grant you the inner peace that she shows me every day. May you know the peace that I experience. It will change you!

Blessed Be !

June 26, 2012 at 10:45 pm
(242) Thistle Downe says:

Great response Patti…this person really is a racist as well as a sorry example of a human being.
Sylvia…if you want to start your own branch of Nazi Wicca, be our guest. As for the rest of us, we welcome all who wish to follow the path. You really have a narrow minded world view, and my guess you are from a racist family and of very young age.
You really need to get a clue Sylvia…racism is the single largest cause of hatred and violence in the world, and there is no place for people like you in Wicca or any other Pagan path for that matter.
Join one of those up and coming hard core fanatical christian cults that hate everyone whom is not like they are or believe as they do…you will no doubt find far more like minded folks there than you will here.

June 26, 2012 at 10:54 pm
(243) Geri Fowler says:

Well said.Pagans can be of any color.To cut Silvia some slack,maybe she was basing her thinking on the fact Gardner was the one who came up with Wicca.Him being white and British perhaps gave her the idea that it was exclusively white. ? Perhaps she was confused about the various Traditions.She is confused somewhere.It seems to me which ever Tradition calls to you,you follow.Or even if it is a mixture of gods/goddesses you follow the ones you resonate towards.Maybe a Traditional Celtic group only allows those of Celtic ancestry since the theory may be that it runs through your soul already….a specific Tradition.It could be confusing to those who have not been around awhile.Paganism is not specific while some groups are and not out of racism,but out of the belief you should adhere to the ways of your ancestors.Native Americans are beginning to make this point concerning the ancestral bond.If you are really not bonded to something in your soul,you really should not try to force it.Many unpleasant situations arise such as the sweat lodge disaster.

June 26, 2012 at 11:10 pm
(244) Moonbeam says:

OMG, are you kidding me??!!!! Did we fall asleep and wake up to 1960 all over again, I guess that means, Silva that since I am of Native American blood, and proud to be that I should not practice Wicca??? I mean after all my skin turns Brown after a hue of “red”, should I return to the reservation to please you???? You are in the wrong realm, it is you who should not practice wICCA!!!!, Your ignorance is showing thru my dear, we are practicing a belief system, a religion, a coming together of beliefs, not who is what color, or why we should not ” break bread together”. Grow up, rid yourself of prejudice, this is what caused the burning trials, remember??? Also remember your Rede, ” Harm ye none” that includes the improper words coming from your mouth, you have a right to your free speech, free thoughts, but know what you are speaking of first. I wish you understanding and peace of ALL PEOPLE no matter there color, beliefs or status. Blessed be;

June 26, 2012 at 11:23 pm
(245) Dia says:

Really? Not only does Sylvia think Wicca should be a white’s only club but now there’s a black problem? And how exactly does not excluding someone for their race equal anti-white?
I think she meant exactly what she said. She even elaborated by responding to a post saying her racism wasn’t welcomed. And the fact that she did respond instead of unfollowing the blog means she feels we’re wrong and she’s waiting for us to come around. People like this make me even more convinced that some people don’t come to paganism because they believe everyone is equal they just couldn’t find any authority in a monotheistic religion.

June 26, 2012 at 11:28 pm
(246) Geri Fowler says:

Here is an example of what I am trying to say in Silvia’s defense.
http://www.native-languages.org/religion.htm,please read.

Native American. Shamanism is a Siberian mystic tradition, Wicca is a religion based in pre-Christian European traditions, Tarot readings are an Indo-European divination method, and the New Age is a syncretic belief system invented, as its name suggests, in the modern era. None of them have anything to do with authentic Indian traditions, and anyone who thinks they do is likely to be wrong about anything else he claims about Native American religions as well. Wiccans and New Agers don’t have any more knowledge about actual American Indian beliefs than you do.

June 26, 2012 at 11:32 pm
(247) Libra13Witch says:

Sylvia…. you are more than welcome to leave Wicca. I hear the Conservative Christians are looking for people with your mind set, perhaps they would be a better fit for you and your lack of personality.

June 26, 2012 at 11:49 pm
(248) Silvia says:

Fred says “I will think of you, Sylvia, when I come before the Blessed Mother and ask that she grant you the inner peace that she shows me every day. May you know the peace that I experience. It will change you!”

Thanks, Fred, you are the kindest person here. Blessed be you!

Somehow people here don’t want to accept the simple fact that many people love their race. If I am white and love my race – many call it hate?!

I guess if I happen to be some other color and say “I love my race and am proud of it” – that would be fine. I have never seen a black person being cursed as a hater, just for the fact that the person would say that he or she is proud of their race or if they think some traditional religions, such as Voodoo is mostly for blacks.

Blacks have their entertainment networks, scholarships reserved fro blacks only, even “Congressional Black Caucus”. And nobody thinks to object.

Jews have synagogue which teach that Jews are chosen by god, while others are not equal to them and not even close.

So I think: Equal Rights for Whites! Why not? Racism is an outdated concept. It is time to accept that all races, including even whites, should have equal rights.

June 26, 2012 at 11:52 pm
(249) Geri Fowler says:

http://www.bluecorncomics.com/newage.htm Go read this page. Ancestral lines do tend to flow through us and therefore we are drawn to certain beliefs.Within Paganism there are groups that are strictly homosexual,or strictly follow ancestry.That is not racism.They have the right to exclusivity whether you agree or not.Pagan does not equal Wicca or Witchcraft.Pagan encompasses many different groups.Not all Pagans are Wiccans,not all witches are Wiccan.Pagan is a catchall phrase,not a belief system.And many old school witches do not follow the New Age style.If Silvia wants to follow a “white” system of beliefs that is her business.She does have a lot to learn that is obvious.Where is all that live and let live so often heard by Pagans now?Bashing does not help the ignorant.

June 27, 2012 at 12:40 am
(250) NateJames says:

White privilege? Stick to religion please. Whites are BY FAR the most underprivileged race in America. We are discriminated against everyday OPENLY just because were white and apparently our ancestors commited some wrong. Everybody here will argue but we ALL know the double standards when it comes to racism. If your white you basically gotta stfu and take it on the chin. You wouldn’t have responded to a colored person with this passion out of fear of being labeled PERIOD

June 27, 2012 at 1:12 am
(251) Krishna says:

I agree with Silvia. We as whites are entitled to have our own culture. Why do we constantly have to share everything with non-whites? Every other race is allowed to have their own culture and pride in themselves but when whites want the same thing they’re automatically villified as evil nazis who want to kill six million jews.

Wicca in an Aryan religion. Therefore its only for Aryans. I’m sick of my race being forced to give up everything thats ours in the name of multiculturalism and diversity which is just a sugar-coated way of saying white genocide.

This doesnt just apply to religion, it applies to everything reguarding our way of life. Look at immigration. Only white nations are being forced to accept millions of migrants that dont look like them. Nobody is flooding Japan with non-asian immigrants. Nobody calls Mexico a racist nation for having laws protecting its demographics. Now before anyone labels me as a hater for suggesting that third world immigrants dont belong in white nations heres my question to you. Do you think whites have the right to live in South Africa? Think about that before you preach about multiculturalism.

June 27, 2012 at 1:40 am
(252) Jo says:

Hey Silvia, There is a religion for whites only. It is a Christian religion of course, and they have this thing about Protecting our Earthbound White Brothers. Arian thing. Go ahead and join, they are all as twisted as you. Really, you don’t want to be Wiccan? I honestly don’t believe you are.

June 27, 2012 at 4:03 am
(253) Darla Marie says:

Wow.. people never fail to shock do they? I am white and I personally beleive wicca/ paganism or any relgiion is open to all races..I dont see why the colour of someones skin would make any difference as to why they couldn’t join in with everyone else!! I enjoy reading your newsletter in my email and it brings much truth and light to my day. I hope she was removed from the site after that! Blessings to all xx

June 27, 2012 at 6:52 am
(254) Elena says:

Good going Silvia! Wicca is and always will be Aryan religion.

June 27, 2012 at 7:10 am
(255) Shaana says:

Well done, Patti! For me, Wicca is the religion of tolerance. Unfortunately, Silvia doesn’t seem to have the same opinion… I feel sad for her…

June 27, 2012 at 7:16 am
(256) April says:

I think it is very sad that this woman feels this way! But I don’t agree with Patti in saying that whites don’t get treated poorly. I’m white and where we I live my white children are the minority! And they get treated poorly, because we are white, and one of my daughters let our religious beleifs slip out amongest who she thought to be her friends, and it made things worse! My family and I are now trying to move to another state just to get away from this inviroment.

June 27, 2012 at 7:32 am
(257) Azra says:

By being Wiccan I am finally NOT branded by titles WHITE/BLACK/MAN/WOMAN/GREEK/ITALIAN/GERMAN/TURKISH/MARRIED/KIDS/NOKIDS bla bla bla

I can be proud for all I am, for all my ancestry, for what their nations have accomplished, BUT I am not making a banner of it. I am not defined by those titles.
I am loved by the Gods, I am responsible for my actions, I work hard, I care for my family.

I am saddened that Sylvia is not understanding this, for she is too far away from grasping what Wicca is all about.
May the Gods grand her wisdom…after the door has hit her on the way out….

June 27, 2012 at 8:28 am
(258) karen meyer says:

oh my goddess. you’ve got to be joking, right/ let me be next in line to say buh bye asshat! good for you patti!

June 27, 2012 at 8:39 am
(259) Faye says:

Hello, Silvia. After all the abuse I’m sure you are suffering from those who commented before me, I doubt you will actually get around to reading my comment, but I just needed to give my little slice of input. First and foremost, you are the supreme definition of an idiot. You are one of those people who rednecks look at and say, “Yup, Jim. That there girl’s got a redder neck than your uncle after a full day ‘o’ huntin’.” Believe me, I grew up in Redneckville. Your type is even shunned by the majority of MY type, and that’s saying something. Second, it is no one’s place to tell others what they can and cannot believe. There is no love for people like that. Third, posting something like what you said on About Paganism/Wicca is just about as close as you’ve probably ever come to suicide. Your credibility is shot, and I guarantee you have pissed off a good 90% of About Paganism/Wicca readers, and Patti as well, obviously. Good job, dumbf***.

June 27, 2012 at 8:53 am
(260) Deep~Glade says:

I believe that race (is there such a thing? I prefer diversity myself) has no place in spirituality or spiritual paths. Each human being is perfectly free to follow whatever spiritual path they want to if it speaks to them and works for them…it is saddening to see the ‘race’ card being tossed up in Paganism and Witchcraft, or any spiritual belief system for that matter. Please let us not be precious about our beliefs, let us share and glory in diversity.

June 27, 2012 at 11:24 am
(261) LJRich says:

Sylvia:

I’ve read your further comments on this post and I think you’re the worst type of racist. You are the one that hides behind loving being white. Well, let me tell you something, you can’t hide behind that because your WORDS betray you.

There is nothing at all wrong with loving being white. And there is nothing at all wrong with being proud of your own culture. However, YOU have asked that other races stay away from Wicca, which is an amalgam of several religious cultures’ traditions. You’ve also stated that white people have no cultural religions which is just stupid, wrong and ignorant of you. You have also stated in another comment several quotations that would prove to me that you are a real, bonafide racist.

I am one that also believes that there is nothing wrong with being proud to be white, or with even wanting you own tribal religion, but Wicca isn’t it, Sylvia. It’s not a white person’s religion solely, and it never will be. If you want white religion, you need to be searching in the right places for it.

Once you vocalize that nothing is safe from other races, or start spewing about white countries being forced to assimilate and yada yada, you cross the line from someone who just wants their own culture to a person who is vocalizing hatred for other races.

Sylvia, you disgust me because YOU are the reason that other people who practice a white cultural religion and do so without hate, are seen as racists, too. Not all of us who are proud of our cultures hate other races, but you give the rest of us a bad name.

So, Sylvia, I say this to you from the bottom of my heart. GTFO and don’t let the door hit you in the rear on the way out.

June 27, 2012 at 12:21 pm
(262) AlainaFae says:

Represent your culture, beliefs, and the things you love by just living those things to the fullest. In the same way that calling people names causes you to lose credibility in an argument even when you’re in the right, harming people or putting other people down to make “your” things seem more special is counter productive, reflecting badly back on yourself. Embrace integrity of self and service to others rather than exclusivity to give your life and “your” culture meaning. No one person or group of people has the authority to police the lifestyles other people adopt whether they be different or similar (excepting those that take advantage of or harm others). Don’t run your life based on how you are different from others.

June 27, 2012 at 12:46 pm
(263) myssteryyy says:

I tip my pointy hat to you Patti, and stand with everyone applauding how well you handled this… person. Well done, and thank you!

<3

June 27, 2012 at 2:01 pm
(264) Crystal Blanton says:

Patti…. Thank you. I have been working on a response to this for Daughters of Eve since i read it while at PSG. Of course it is a subject near and dear to me.

Sylvia… and the others who have posted with these views. Priviledge is a strange thing because it is usually those with it who cannot see it. I am happy you can trace your lineage back to whatever…. most of us of color cannot because it has been stripped and raped from us. Please do not compare your fight with preservation to ours…. it is not close. We do have BET…. you have ABC, FOX and all the other mainstream channels. Come on… let’s be realistic.

And further… do some research. Where do you come from. I mean really? First of all…. I probably have more European blood in me than you do (for various reasons) and where did we all come from? Does that make your ancestry really African? Isn’t that brilliant?!?!

I pray that your misguided thoughts be a reflection of how you want to grow as a human being and not where you want to stay stuck. May you find it.

June 27, 2012 at 2:31 pm
(265) Jerome V. Trafny says:

Regarding the Racist women who want Wicca to exclude persons of color. Me thinks you are disconnected from the Goddess’s and Gods in that, I am inspired that they, the Goddess’s and Gods don’t really care who comes to honor and worship them, whether those whom come are black or white. They, the Goddess’s and Gods are grateful and honored that anyone comes at all. Wicca was started in 1954 by Gerald Gardner, after the UK repealed the witchcraft law. I have not found any particular rule or requirement that requires practitioners of Wicca to be of Eurasious decent. I am personally Neo-Pagan and Polytheistic. I have been teaching and facilitating Pagan philosophy and ritual for a great number of years. Anyone is welcome into my grove and my church, so long as what they attach themselves unot is not inimical to Neo-Pagan philosophy. Racism/Christianity/Ignorance/Hatred are all the concepts brought into our reality through Abrahamic traditions.
ne should not proclaim they are Wiccan or a clan Wittan with such ignorance as their inspiration.
BLessings
I remain,
Rev. Jerome V. Trafny
Universal Life Church & Grove of the Kindred Spirit
sardiki1@yahoo.com

June 27, 2012 at 3:21 pm
(266) Carolyn says:

Yaa Patti!!

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