This article by PCV Committee member Luca was originally published in our old newsletter, Spokes of the Wheel (volume 2 issue 5, Yule 2015). Photo by Kylie Moroney photography.
“Deep beneath the shade and power Of this tree we call our tower Day is fleeting, shadows fall Across this path our feet touch all”
-Charge of the WildWood
T o this I must confess, Wildwood witchcraft is a rather recent current of witchcraft. It came into being late 2006 through four young men when a “call out” was sent by one of the founders of Wild-wood seeking like minded individuals who might be interested in exploring pagan faith together and delving into the mysteries that witchcraft holds. A covenant was formed between these four but soon other witches from the surrounding area began to congregate and celebrate the moon and sun under the banner of “WildWood”.
The earlier members of Wildwood began to recognise this strand of witchcraft as its own beast. This was noted when one of the founding members branched out and carried the seed of Wildwood him to form his coven in England. At that time something affectionately nicknamed the “yewj” (the usual setup) became fully formed. The “yewj” being what had used to be a somewhat basic neopagan framework but had rather organically grown and evolved as had its participants.
Wildwood has since expanded, branched out and thrown its seeds to every possible passing wind with our witches now based in Australia, the Netherlands, America, England and even a witch or two in Japan.
Through its enigmatic beginnings Wildwood has thus become a definition of eclecticism, having drawn inspiration, vision and learning from Greco-Roman mystery traditions, English folk-lore, published Wiccan material, indigenous European shamanic practices and paradigms, Italian witchcraft, Luciferian and heretical witchcraft, historical witchcraft trials, the Reclaiming tradition of witchcraft and Celtic druidism. A few of the many authors who’ve had an influence on the members of Wildwood and our practice are Doreen Valiente, Dion Fortune, Starhawk, Robert Cochrane and Charles Godfrey Leland.
I remember hearing a member of our community succinctly describe Wildwood as a “Earth based, ecstasy driven, mysterytradition”. To pull it out of a romanticised and poetic context and put it into layman’s terms it can be broken down into three parts.
Firstly, “earth based” refers to our belief that the land itself is inherently sacred, that nature in all its guises and masks is the honest face of God Herself and that the earth itself is worthy of our protection and adoration, both practically and magically.
Secondly, “ecstasy driven” refers to the sorcerous practices and skills employed within our tradition, fetch-flight, possession and oracular seership not being seen as taboo (although we often pride ourselves as taboo breakers) but accepted and explored.
Thirdly, “mystery tradition” eludes to our tradition’s framework as well as our relationship with greater mystery; the otherworld being seen as the heartland of the witch. The framework of Wildwood can be broken down into an inner and outer court, inner being comprised of Dedicants and the Priesthood and the outer court being filled with Aspirants.
One thing that separates us from other mystery traditions is our actual lack of hierarchy, Priest/esses not having authority over Dedicants and Dedicants not having authority over Aspirants. The journey from Aspirant to Dedicant to Priest/ess being viewed largely as a journey inwards and into mystery, with certain names and mysteries being withheld from aspirants on the basis that without a context, these mysteries would mean nothing.
Our tradition, though young and fresh, makes brave strides forward, misstepping at times though always picking ourselves back up and dusting off with as much grace and tact as a bunch of cackling witches can do. We accept people from all gender expressions, sexualities, capabilities, races and walks of life and we never charge for the education, training and initiation of Wildwood witchcraft.
As a member of the Wildwood tradition of witchcraft and a rather recent resident of Melbourne, I look forward to being more present and active within the Victorian Pagan community.
See the Facebook Event Page for more details.
This two-day intensive explores the Witch as the Seer, the Vessel and the Caster of Spells. Together we will delve deeply beyond the Veil to acquire the Gift of Sacred Sight and ignite the Seer within. We will cleanse, clear and align Self with All-Self and become the Holy Vessel to the Hidden, Mysterious and Mighty Potencies – to draw down/in the Gods and Spirits and to allow for direct interface and intimacy with the human community. We will also reclaim the sorcery inherent in our Craft and learn tried and true techniques for successful and ecstatic spellcraft – to wilfully and willingly weave with the strands of the Web and work with the Will of God Herself to attain to Desire, fulfil Necessity and affect Change.
In order to attend this intensive you must have a foundational magical practice that is alive to you and a conscious and tended relationship with your Spirits.
Partially waged: $170-200
There will be two places reserved for Trans/Indigenous/People of Colour/Activist/Queer/Single Parents who require financial assistance.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
About the teacher:
Fio, who writes and teaches under their birth name Gede Parma, has been teaching workshops and intensives on ecstatic witchcraft, oracular and possessory technique, and sorcerous spellcraft for over a decade internationally. They are the current Lucifer (Magister) of a Traditional Witch covenant within the Wildwood Tradition and a trained Reclaiming and WitchCamp teacher. He descends from powerful and wondrous families hailing from Bali, Ireland, Scotland, and England. They recently moved to invaded land whose First Peoples are the Wurundjeri, the Traditional Owners of the place called Melbourne. Fio is a published author, a contemporary dancer in training, and a very queer witchcraft nerd.
See the Facebook Event Page for more details.