Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Virtues - A Wiccan Perspective

A virtue is something morally or characteristically good about someone. Virtues set the highest standard for how people should treat each other, themselves, and the world around them. Many religions have virtues even though they’re not all called the same thing. Christians go by Faith, Hope and Love. Judaism has the Ten Commandments which include instructions forbidding adultery, theft, murder, etc. Muslims use the Quran as their guidelines for virtues by requiring morals such as righteousness, generosity, gratitude, contentment, and humility.

As for Wiccans, it’s a little bit harder to pin down and exact set of virtues that can be copied word for word. Doreen Valiente created a poem called The Charge of the Goddess. In it, many Wiccans take the eight virtues of mirth, reverence, honor, humility, strength, beauty, power and compassion and apply them to everyday life. Scott Cunningham also created the 13 Goals of a Witch which he published in his book Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner. These goals can also be considered Wiccan virtues:
  1. Know yourself
  2. Know your Craft (Wicca)
  3. Learn
  4. Apply knowledge with wisdom
  5. Achieve balance
  6. Keep your words in good order
  7. Keep your thoughts in good order
  8. Celebrate life
  9. Attune with the cycles of the Earth
  10. Breathe and eat correctly
  11. Exercise the body
  12. Meditate
  13. Honor the Goddess and God
With these two references, it is apparent that virtues across all faiths are similar. Basically, treat each other, yourself, and the world around you well so that things don’t fall into chaos. Remember the Gods and Goddesses and keep a connection with the divine.

Teaching virtues to children is important. In Bacchus and Hestia’s last weekly lesson, they learned the Wiccan Rede and the 13 Goals of a Witch. We went over each one and I asked them what they thought each one meant and how it applied to their lives. They were also required to transcribe them into their journals.

Bill and Ted sum virtues up best at the end of their adventure. So, in their style, remember:

“Be excellent to each other. And… PARTY ON DUDES!”

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