Objective explanations of Wiccan beliefs can be found at NewWiccanChurch.org, ReligionFacts.com and About.com. Sites like Wicca For The Rest of Us and Wicca Lessons also offer deeper, in-depth information about the religion's practices.Continue Reading
Traditionally, Wicca is an oath-bound mystery religion, focused on honoring the God and Goddess, while celebrating the cycles of birth, life, death and rebirth - through the passing of the seasons. Though often touted as an ancient religion, Wicca, as it is currently practiced, is relatively modern. Introduced publicly by Gerald Gardner in the early part of the 20th century, it is a mix of witchcraft, ceremonial magic and other older Pagan religions.
Major rituals revolve around the solstices, equinoxes and cross-quarter days (known as Sabbats), and full moon days (known as Esbats). Additionally, many Wiccans follow some version of the Wiccan Rede, which states: 'An it harm none, do as ye will. Some take this as a general prohibition against causing harm, however, it is really just advice which points out the importance of carefully considering an action before taking it and being willing to accept the consequences of the action, particularly if it is something that may cause harm.
About.com estimates that more than 500,000 Americans practice some form of Wicca (either traditional or more eclectic forms), as of 2015, but also maintains that reliable statistics are not easily obtained. This is primarily due to many practitioners being reluctant to openly identify due to continued stigma associated with the religion.Learn more about Religion