Most people think that was Wicca was started in 1954 by Gerald Gardner. Well that is when the modern Wicca started; but it is older than that. Wicca is one of the oldest religions we have. Wicca originated in the early twentieth century, when it first developed amongst several secretive covens in England who were basing their religious beliefs and practices upon what they read of the historical Witch-Cult in the works of such writers as Margaret Murray (researched.)
I have heard it was even before than but I am my reach isn't showing a time before that, I was taught that it was as old if not older than the Christian religion. Wiccan's had to join hidden covens to be able to practice there own believes.
Between February 1692 and May 1693 there were Witch trails that took Place in Salem place. Here is a link to the research on the trails.
Some nine million women were burned at the stake as witches for being pagans or healers or merely wise or powerful women, with only occasional and timid intervention. (researched)
I think it is a shame that a lot of wiccan's still have to hide there believes. Even for myself I have to hide that I am Wicca to some of my family. To some people that have to deal with my kids, cause it isn't the "normal". So we that hide like in the olden days still wear our pentacles as a hidden message to the other wiccan's that we are here too and we don't need to hide in the shadows. This is why I choice to make this type of a website. I think that wiccan's and witches a like need a voice. So I, Katherine Foster are here and made these site for all to have a safe place to hide. That's also why there is a live chat that you pick your own name and you can be free to talk and no one can hurt you, bully you or put you down here. This is a Wiccan safe heaven. I know that it is a scary world out there but everyone has a right to there know choices. I think that we need to hug a Wiccan, or any one for that matter and let them stand up as tall as they can. I say, mother earth would like it more if we all got alone.
I know that some people find it hard not to be sacred of the unknown. That is okay too. I know that there is a lot of people that say wiccans, and satanists are all the same. But we are not. Wiccan's believe in mother earth. Some believe in the gods and goddess and others don't. There are some wiccan's that are witches. No there isn't any warlocks. Some wiccan's do magick. Most wiccan's believe in that men and ladies are at the same level in the world but the ladies still like there doors opened and all that stuff, we just want to be able to do a male job if we wanted to and for a guy to be able to do a female type job too.
From David Cooze, New South Wales: Regarding the origin of the term "Warlock", I offer the following. As you would know this title has frequently been identified with a male witch. More recently many have disputed this due to its possible reference to a "liar" or "betrayer of trust", an oath-breaker. Others choose to dismiss it because of the inclusion of "war" in the name. Doreen Valiente in her book, "An ABC of Witchcraft" (pub. Hales 1973, re-printed with corrections, 1984) states that the term has Scottish origins, but doesn't enlarge upon this at all. More interestingly, Nigel Pennick in his, "Practical Magic in the Northern Tradition (pub. Aquarian 1989) has the following to say:- The Scots dialect word Warlock, meaning a cunning man or male white witch, is rarely used today except pejoratively. Because dictionary definitions have given it meanings like "liar", it has fallen from use, but it is clear that in reality it relates to the power to shut in or enclose, i.e. a person with the capability of making binding spells. This is found in the Norse tale Eir¡ks Saga Rauda. The story is set in Greenland, some years after the Christian religion was imposed. A V"lva (wise woman) conducting a ceremony asks the assembly that a song called Vardlokkur should be sung to enable the continuation of the ceremony. No-one knows it, except a girl on a visit from Iceland. She is Christian, but has been taught it by her nurse. Reluctant at first to sing the Vardlokkur, knowing it to be Pagan, eventually she is cajoled into singing, and the ceremony is completed without interference. The power of the warlock, then, is to ward off evil spirits and to lock or bind them up. Along similar lines, the following appeared in Vol IX no 5 (#49) of the "Pagana" occult magazine:- Warlock may come from the hypothetical (unattested) Old English waer- loga, "oath-breaker", or it may come from the (fully-attested) Old Norse Vard-lokkur, "caller of spirits". Generally when looking at the origins of the words "warlock" and "witch" (along with others), the Anglo-Saxon and Old English often need to be traced to the Nordic languages. This makes sense when it is realised that the Celts of Central Europe originated from the northern tribes, before their culture mixed with that of the Mediterranean lands and the aboriginal races of what is now Britain. It is well-known that due to difficult access of the remote northern areas (i.e., for the Romans), the Nordic/Saxon cultures retained a greater degree of purity within their customs and language, so this may also be a contributing factor. I also found the translation of "binder" for warlock of interest, as this would seem to relate directly to the term's usage within the Alexandrian Book of Shadows, here being used as a reference to both the action and the role of that person who does the binding of the applicant during the initiation rite.
Wicca is a common and much older name for witchcraft. The term witchcraft has been defined in different ways. In the past it has most often referred to the human harnessing of supernatural powers for the malevolent purpose of practicing black magic. For this reason, witchcraft, sorcery, and magic are nearly synonymous. Witchcraft is not, however, synonymous with Satanism. Not all witches worship Satan, and in fact most do not believe in Satan at all. Nor do they believe in hell, evil, or original sin. These groups believe that Satan is an imaginary creation of the Christian Church. If they believe in Satan at all they will tell you that the devil is just another Christian diety. They also do not believe in demons, and their deities are considered to be "imminent", or within each of us, meaning that everyone is actually deity.
A few groups do, however, worship Satan. During the Middle Ages, witchcraft experienced a great revival. The supernatural became very popular and superstition abounded. If someone wanted to become a witch, there was an initiation process. Some of the techniques were simple and some were complicated, but there were usually two requirements. The first was that the would-be witch must join of his or her own free will. The second requirement was that the prospective witch must be willing to worship the devil. Modern day witches, however, are not typically Satan worshipers.
Much like the New Age Movement, most Wiccans do not accept the belief that there is good or evil. They argue that there are only forces that must be balanced. Evil is just a necessary part of good and the negative can be transmuted into the positive (a basic belief of medieval alchemy). While political views are not universal among witches, most support neo-tolerance. There is no absolute truth. What's true for you may not be true for me, so everything is true, just pick one. They also are strong supporters of women's rights and matriarchy, sexual "freedom" (including homosexuality, polyamory, non-monogamy, sexual activity by teens), abortion, and the abolition of Christianity from public life, especially in schools and governmental functions. In recent years there have been lawsuits filed by Pagans against such things as "In God We Trust", student-led prayer in schools, the Ten Commandments, and Christian symbols, such as the Cross, in city and county seals. However, many are also active in getting the schools to teach the Wiccan holidays (Halloween, Winter Solstice, etc.), pagan elements of "Earth Day", and Pagan symbolism. An ally in the fight to introduce pagan earth worship into the schools is found in the United Nations as they are working to promote the Earth Charter in education, a document that contains much pagan tradition and doctrine.
Modern day Wiccans tend to distance themselves from Christianity because of what they claim is the proliferation of a patriarchal male-dominated religion that has historically ignored the role of women in the church and society. Traditionally, however, there have been as many, if not more, male witches/sorcerers than female in some pagan circles (e.g., the Druids). While not a religion for women only, today witchcraft is very much a female dominated religion.
The definitive start of the modern witchcraft era began with Gerald Gardner (1884-1964). As an archaeologist, Gardner had accumulated an extensive occult background. While in Southeast Asia, he learned the secrets of the Malaysian magical knife and became a Mason and a nudist. In 1939 when he returned to England an avid occultist, he became a member of the Corona Fellowship of Rosicrucians where he met Dorothy Clutterbuck. Clutterbuck initiated Gardner into witchcraft. Gordon wrote two books, one of which he claimed was to record accurately the history and practice of witchcraft, as he felt it was dying out. J. Gordon Melton stated in his review of Gardner's book Witchcraft Today, "Research suggests that Gardner did not discover a pre-existing Witchcraft group". A paper by Gardner published by Ripley's Believe it or Not disclosed that Gardner took the magical resources he acquired in Asia and a selection of Western magical texts and created a new religion centered upon the worship of the Mother-Goddess."
This was an important beginning in witchcraft, for it is the worship of the Mother-Goddess that has become the focus of modern witchcraft. From Gardner's writings, greatly influenced by Aleister Crowley, Theosophy, Freemasonry, ritual/sex magic, and numerous other occult sources, emerged modern day Wicca.
I hope this has helped everyone to learn a little more on wicca. If you want to know more please email me