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How to Defend Wicca / Paganism to Friends and Family

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Sometimes coming out of the broom closet becomes hardest when your friends and family treat your religion like it is not legitimate. Like the followers of your religion are nothing but addle-brained tree huggers, or are following this path for attention. For a real believer, this is not so.


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    Remember, the law is on your side. Our government does not legally recognize religions, and so cannot make any religion "illegal". The closest things we have (arguably) on the Federal level are tax-exempt status for religious organizations by the IRS and recognition as legitimate by the military. There are Wiccan "churches" that are tax-exempt, and Wicca is acknowledged to some extent by branches of the military. On the State level, some states recognize clergy from some Wiccan organizations as legal to perform marriages.
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    Be patient in your explanations of what the religion is. Losing your temper won't get you anywhere.
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    Be prepared that they aren't going to convert, and they may not accept your reasoning.
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    Do your research. Make sure you know how to field any questions they may have. Be professional about it.
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    Be sure to answer their questions clearly.
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    Answering specific questions they have can be more fruitful than overwhelming them with lots of information.
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    Don't try to convert them, as a true believer of Wicca it isn't your place to.
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    Do not row with Christian fundamentalists who frequently claim to know more about Pagan faiths than the practitioners themselves. For centuries the Church has been defaming Pagan faith systems and calling them demonic. It is therefore better to dissect the fundamentalist's own dogmatism via challenging their cut on the Sun God myth. Of course Christians hijacked all traditions and customs of earlier Pagan faiths and made them their own. In effect western culture under the Church has lived a lie for 2000 years.

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  • My mother believes that Paganism is bad and unholy. What can I tell her to convince her otherwise?
    wikiHow Contributor
    I can relate completely. Explain to her that it is similar to lots of other religions. One, just like most religions we have a higher force that can be seen as a loving, parental type entity. And, two, we also have a rule that almost every religion has to some degree, that whatever you do comes back to you, or treat others as you want to be treated. While this still may not convince her, it isn't her choice, it's your life and she can't control you completely. You may have to accept that not everyone understands us and what we do.
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  • Remember that keeping your cool and knowing what you're talking about are the two best things you can do in this situation.
  • Remember you don't actually have to "defend" our religion to them, but are only expressing your point of view in the case they are interested.
  • If you feel like none of your family or friends approve of Wicca, remember that you don't need their approval to believe in something. If your parents won't let you hold ritual, don't go behind their backs. Do it in your head (meditate), or don't do it at all. You don't have to do ritual to be Wiccan, you just have to live the Threefold Law and Wiccan Rede, and believe in Spirit, or the Gods, or whatever it is you believe. Instead of "doing magic" you can "live magically", and see how magic already is part of everyday life.
  • Use mutual respect. We all have our own paths, if you respect others' religions and they will be more ready to respect yours. Remember that no one religion is better than another. Most religions have more in common than not. These can be good starting points for mutual understanding.
  • The most common responses to the religion are that it is Satanism, against the Christian god, and/or scorning the practice of magic as either evil or stupid. Be prepared to deal with those three topics efficiently, but learn to steer the conversation soon to something more positive.
  • How you live your life and who you are will make a much greater impact on those who know you, in the long run, than any number of conversations. Being a decent, responsible, healthy person will do the most to "defend" Wicca, and comfort those who care about you.


  • Never attack someone for asking you a question. What may seem like it is in jest may be honest curiosity.
  • Don't try to convert people, it is pushy and unbecoming, and generally accepted as "Not Wiccan."
  • There are a lot of things someone that doesn't understand about Wicca, or may fear enough to be violent towards it. It is a good idea to establish a good reputation as a dedicated friend, a loving family member and such before announcing that you are a Wiccan.

Don't stress if they don't listen, not everyone will understand. Good luck

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Categories: Paganism | Wicca

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