Religion witches and the U.S. Army


"America will not be able to do is not a Christian!" — Conservatives argue that country. But is it? States are rapidly becoming a post-Christian nation, and one of the most striking evidence of this — legalization at the state level of the revived cult of witches, Wicca. All the efforts of Christian organizations to prevent this have failed and this failure clearly demonstrated to the world what positions are held by religious groups NewAge in a new and different world.

Wicca (Wicca) — So calls himself a modern "religion of witches", revived the belief in witchcraft (witchcraft). Primary Wiccan religious organizations (wiccans) Referred to as "coven" (covens) — Just like in the medieval treatises on witch-processes, and the principal symbol of their religion — the pentagram, which in the Western tradition as a symbol of the Devil. Well, the witch — his servant.

However, according to Western scholars of religion, the Horned God, worshiped in a number of ways of Wicca (and she, like any self-respecting Western religious movement, already there are several denominations, often loosely connected to each other) — is a legacy of the pre-Christian Europe, the supreme male deity. Among the religious items consumed in rituals, there are brooms, and Boilers, in which, according to the views of Anglo-Saxons, witches brew the potion.

Place of birth — England

Home Wicca began in the UK, where, after the abolition in 1951 of the "Act of witchcraft" (Witchcraft Act), Adopted at the beginning of XVIII century (ie — in 1735), named Gerald Gardner claimed publicly that the last day on ancient religion, miraculously preserved in a Christian country.

Gardner's revelations about his initiation into the underground movement of witch-acting fairly smacks of fiction and redeveloped faith was very much like that discussed in popular books Margaret Murray "Witching cult in Western Europe" (1921), and "God of Witches" (1933). However, in Britain in those years, slowly get rid of the conservative Heritage, was a place and a witch, and even revived in the same years, the druidic movement.

Later, however, the most favorable conditions for the growth of Wiccan, and in general the modern neo-pagan movement, it developed in the United States: the 1960s and 1970s in America, among others, marked by the rise of interest in the philosophy of Maharishi Castaneda and Zen Buddhism as well as to the cultural heritage of the Celts and Anglo-Saxons conquered the Indians. The latter are often presented in the West as "closer to nature" than a modern white people professing Christianity.

To understand the psychological and social portrait recruit enough Americans in Wicca is typical of modern biography of the High Priestess of the cult in the U.S. Selena Fox. She was born in 1949 in a family of fundamentalist Southern Baptist in Arlington, Virginia, with a childhood interest in nature, psychology (including parapsychology), and divination by the Tarot. In high school, he came to the conclusion that "patriarchal" nature of Christianity, she stopped going to the Baptist church, and focuses on its' own spirituality, which would allow her to be closer to nature. " Enrolling at the end of the school to the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, she joined the student demonstration for peace and human rights, as well as taking an active part in the organization of the first "Earth Day" in 1970. In 1971, after finishing college, Selena moved to Rutgers University, New Jersey, where he met with the Wiccan "witch", takes this cult and immersed in his work.

Biography fairly typical in terms of "social activity" Youth of those years in the United States, except that there were no drag rock 'n' roll and the hippie subculture. However, the "witch's coven," with its dancing and informal life could well replace the party unkempt hiparey. It is worth adding that the official biography on the website of the High Priestess of her organization mentions that her "ethnic roots cover Scotland, Wales, England, Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, France, Sweden, Norway and the Cherokee Indian tribe "- this pedal that it has both Celtic and Native American descent.

In October 1974, Selena Fox created his own organization — the "Circle of Wicca." All ceremonies are held since then in a rented farm "Sun Prairie" in Wisconsin.

In 1978, "The Church of Wicca Circle" was officially recognized as a religious organization by the authorities of the state in 1980 — the federal authorities. In 1985, after the performance of Selena Fox at a congressional hearing Wiccan Church has received the tax exemption, the same as other state-recognized religious organizations in the U.S..

Place Circle Wicca rituals since 1983 is on the organization of the acquired area of 200 acres on Mount Horeb, Wisconsin, since 1988, has the official status of a nature reserve.

Calculate the U.S. "witches"

By the beginning of the 1990s, the researchers say nothing of the tens of thousands Fox co-religionists in the United States. "About 50,000 Wiccans there are in the United States," — stated in the published in 1990, "the handbook of the military chaplain."

The article Craig Hawkins "The modern world of sorcery," which appeared in the roomChristian Research Journal during the winter-spring of the same year, noted:

"For various reasons, it is difficult, if not impossible, to tell the exact number of" witches "in North America. Rough estimate of the conservatives give 5 to 10 thousand. A liberal estimate — in the range from 30 to 50 000, and 70 to 80 thousand to neopagans general. The actual number is probably located on the bottom of a conservative estimate. "

"But, — said the researcher — a witch cult is growing at a steady pace, and if something does not turn sharply spiritual climate in America and do not do something with a craving for occultism, the witch community will become increasingly significant minority — and this sobering ability does not allow the Church to ignore it. "

If you look at the statistics, we here will serve as a major source of data "Studies of American religious identity" (American Religious Identification Survey, ARIS) Periodically conducted by the Research Center of New York University (The Graduate Center of the City University of New York). DataARIS formed on the basis of mass surveys by phone, number in the tens and even hundreds of thousands of calls. Identified during these surveys ratio can then be projected to the U.S. population as a whole.

The survey in 1990 suggested that a in the United States, there were about 8,000 Wiccans. Poll 2001 leads to a figure of 134,000, and in 2008 — 342,000 Wiccans. And this is without other neo-pagans, whose number in 2001 was identified 33,000 "Druids" and just 134,000 "heathen." Thus, according to ARIS, In 2001, the U.S. had about 300,000 members of different pagan movements.

Own survey Wiccans and pagans United States, held throughout the year starting in July 1999, gave a figure of 768,400 people. This survey allows us to refine the structure and movement. 71% participated in the survey were women and only 29% of men. 11% were aged under 17 years, 25% — at the age of 17 to 25 years, 40% — from 26 to 39 years, 23% — from 40 to 59 years, 1% — 60 and older.

In the 1990s, as we see, the witch belief in the United States has experienced a real take-off. "Its adherents claim that it is the fastest growing religion in the United States, with nearly half a million believers" — wrote in November 1999, that is, before all of the above case studies papers Christianity Today Lauren Wilkinson, adding:

"In the rural wilderness islands of British Columbia, where I live with my wife, [Pagan and Wiccan including] the solstice celebration is much more attendance than the local church."

"Vedmovschina" in the U.S. Army

In 1999, also revealed that since August 1997 the largest U.S. military base Fort Hood in Texas twice a week the Wiccan rituals for the employees there about 300 followers of the religion. In the role of Military Chaplain advocated "witch" Mary Palmer, previously served 5 years in the military police, and in those years — in hospital Fort Hood.

The first publication of the pagan rites and chaplain appeared in the press 11 May 1999 in the newspaper AmericanStatesman (Austin, TX), and only 9 June thirteen conservative and Christian organizations issued a statement:

"As long as the army does not give up any official support and endorsement of witchcraft, no Christian should re-enlist in the Army, and Christian parents should not allow their children to join the army. The army, which sponsors satanic rituals is unworthy of representing the United States of America. "

Among these organizations was also Christian Coalition with its 2.1 million members, serving as one of the main components of the modern Republican Party.

It is noteworthy that while a statement on this issue was made and a future Republican candidate in the presidential elections, and the then Governor of TexasGeorge W. Bush. June 24, 1999 he said in a broadcast television"I do not think that witchcraft — it is a religion, and I would like to offer the military to take another look at the problem and solve it is not in favor of the Witch. " However, all the loud protests, including sound for several days threats from Christian organizations "To march at the base and disrupt the rituals that have forced the army to strengthen the protection framework", no action: more than a year later, on October 27, 2000, unknown broke Wiccan altar at Fort Hood, but that was it.

Meanwhile, in 1999 noted, that "a military chaplain thick reference book includes five pages of a textbook on Wicca," and besides Fort Hood departure Wiccan rituals soldiers already "were sanctionedmilitary at Fort Wainwright, Alaska, to Kadena Air Base on Okinawa and at Fort Polk in Louisiana. "

Despite the fact that in early 2000, with the support of the president of the conservative part of the state's population has just spoken out against the witch cult W. Bush in staying Wiccans in the U.S. Army that little has changed. "The Gentiles allowed to wear a pentagram, but small — on perstenke or under the form of a chain. Tattoos are not encouraged, although returning to the base [at Fort Hood] from Bosnia young pagans gouged at his biceps red devils size of a fist. "

During his second presidential term, Bush managed to Wiccans and official recognition of their symbolism as possible to be placed on tombstones and memorial plaques for military cemeteries. In November 2006, the pentagram as a symbol of the Wiccan religion appeared on the Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Fernley, Dakota State — in memory of murdered in September 2005 in Afghanistan Sergeant Patrick Stewart.

In addition, in view of the resistance in this issue of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the widows of dead servicemen, Wiccans, along with the "Circle of Wicca" and a California Army mission Wiccans and pagans "Invincible Isis' (IsisInvicta) Filed a claim for recognition of their logo on the military cemeteries in the District Court of the State of Wisconsin and the federal appeals court in Washington. In April 2007, Wiccans have achieved victory in the 10-year struggle — Matt Barnes, spokesman for the Department, reported on decision of the Office "Act in the interests of interested families and relieve taxpayers from the costs of continued litigation" (the Department has agreed to assume the pre-existing legal expenses on the claim in the amount of 225 thousand dollars).

In May 2011, near the Air Force Academy in Colorado was equipped with a mini-Stonehenge for ceremonies Wiccans and Druids. During the consecration of the place of the head of the cult Wiccan church in Texas David Orindgreff exclaimed"Nowhere, except the United States, is not it would be possible!. "

In the American media in recent years can be found, for example, a photo and video Wiccan ceremonies at a military air base in Lakeland Texas, where the Wiccan rites are held in the supplied database administration and Congress Hall. According to the journalists, these rituals — equipped with altars, brooms and swords — Sunday come on military bases 300-400, although not always all of them Wiccans.

I should add that Wicca is recognized as a religion in the country's universities. In February 2013 it was reported that the administration of the University of Missouri contributed to your calendar (Where there is not only Christian, but also, for example, Hindu holidays) eight pagan and Wiccan holidays, specifying for teachers that would have cost "to avoid installing these exam dates for students, since it is likely that they will be at this time very little sleep "because of their religious rites.

Could imagine someone like during seylemskih processes based "Fathers settlers' colonies on the East Coast? Hardly. However, in times of "Uncle Tom," no one could imagine that in the beginning of XXI century, the United States will be a black president.

Vladislav Vladimirov

More about sects in the United States

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