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Tradtions Description:
 
   Alexandrian-The tradition of Alexandrian Wicca was established by Alexander Sanders in the 1960s.  He and his wife Maxine began the tradition.  He claimed from early on to have initially been initiated into witchcraft as a hereditary by his grandmother, he later recanted this version.  He was in fact initiated into a Gardenarian coven by a lady named Pat Kopanski.
    When Alex began to publicise Wicca, he encountered strong opposition from more traditional members of the Craft. Some saw it as nothing more than a bid by Alex for personal notoriety; others that he was profaning a mystery. Whatever his motivation, the publicity certainly made people aware of his existence; he and Maxine initiated a great many people in the 1960s and 1970s, including Stewart Farrar and Janet Owen.
   Alexandrian covens focus strongly upon training, which includes areas more generally associated with ceremonial magic, such as Qabalah, Angelic Magic, and Enochian. The typical Alexandrian coven has a hierarchical structure, and generally meets weekly, or at least on Full Moons, New Moons and Festivals.
   Most Alexandrian covens will allow non-initiates to attend circles, usually as a "neophyte", who undergoes basic training in circle craft, and completes a number of projects, prior to being accepted by the coven for initiation to 1st degree. Some, though not all, Alexandrian covens will also welcome non-initiated "guests" at certain meetings. My own first experience of Wicca was as a guest of an Alexandrian coven.
   Alexandrian Wicca uses essentially the same tools and rituals as Gardnerian Wicca, though in some cases, the tools are used differently, and the rituals have been adapted. Another frequent change is to be found in the names of deities and guardians of the quarters. In some ways these differences are merely cosmetic, but in others, there are fundamental differences in philosophy.
Arthurian-This tradition is a bit confusing in my opinion.  I believe the resurgence in Arthurian intrests may have come about from many books published.  Arthurian tradition is based on Celtic/Saxon forms.  It relys on magick preformed in and around the legendary life of King Arthur, Glatsonbury, The Merlin's of Brittian, and the Lady of the Lake in Avalon.  My personal take on this tradtion is that it is based on true magick preformed by Druid, Celt's and similar traditions, with a bit of Arthurian role playing involved.  I would like to be more specific on this tradition, however the information available is clouded with some ficitious and non-ficticous hisotry.
 
British Traditional Witch-There are many Brit Trads, I chose to comment on the 1734 tradition.  The 1734 Tradition is based on the teachings, writings (published and personal), and the inspiration of Robert Cochrane. 1734 is not an anagram, however, it IS a riddle. It does not give the true name of the Goddess as there are many names of the Goddess, all True. Within the 1734 tradition there are a number of riddles. When all are answered, and not until then, a dilligent student will understand this tradition.
There are many paths to the Gods and Goddesses. 1734 is one distinct path and not for everyone. There are many things about 1734 that are different: The placement of the elements; The firm dedication that the Clan is one's spiritual family; the necessary shamanic essence; and Not believing in the Goddess, but knowing her as an every day part of your life .  (*British Traditional~
Many British Traditional groups follow the ideas of Janet and Stewart Farrar. Relatively structured, degree-oriented training.)
 
Celtic Wicca-Celtic Wicca (Church of Wicca)-The Church of Wicca was founded by Gavin and Yvonne Frost. They offer correspondence courses in their brand of Wicca, which is sometimes called Celtic Wicca. The Church of Wicca has just recently begun including a Goddess in their diety structure, and has been very patrofocal as Wiccan traditions go. The Chuch of Wicca terms itself "Baptist Wicca".
  The Frosts call their tradition of Wicca Celtic. To me it seems more of a mixture of high magic and eclectic Wicca, with a smattering of Celtic thrown in. For instance, they use three circles, one within the others, made of salt, sulphur and herbs with runes and symbols between them instead of just one circle. They also insist on a white- handled athame and will not have a black handled one, whereas all the other traditions I have heard or read about use a black handled one. It seems to me the Wicca they practice and teach should not be called Celtic at all; but since a lot of it is made up or put together by them from other traditions they should also give it a made-up name; say Frostism. If you DON'T have to pay for the course, and have some extra time, it would probably be worth reading just for comparison.
   The Frosts have always been rather more public than most traditions (advertising their course in the Enquirer and similar publications) which has earned them heavy criticism in less public Craft groups.  (*Celtic~
Influenced by Druidic beliefs. Celtic Wicca emphasizes nature and the elements)
 
Calendonii Tradition-Formally known as the Hecatine Tradition, this denomination of the Craft is Scottish in origin, and still preserves the unique festivals of the Scots.  The rituals are secretive, and the "family" lineage are of utmost importance.
 
Ceremonial Witchcraft-The basic technologies for ceremonial magick are set forth in Liber O. Banishings and invocations are divided into elemental and planetary categories, and grouped under the figures of the pentagram and hexagram, respectively. In each case, a distinction is made between the "lesser" ritual and the "greater" ritual pertaining to that figure. It is unsurprising that many magicians first take this distinction to refer to a difference of degree, i.e. the "greater" ritual is merely a more elaborate and powerful version of the "lesser" ritual. In fact, the difference is one of type and intention.
  The "lesser" rituals of the pentagram and hexagram are widely understood and appreciated in terms of their intention and effect. Whether used to banish or to invoke, each ritual is designed to address a full spectrum of forces (elemental or planetary) in a balanced, comprehensive fashion. The fact that the elemental forces are "coarser" and more palpable than the planetary ones accounts for the relative importance and frequency of the lesser pentagram ritual in ceremonial work. In Liber O, the descriptions of the lesser rituals of the pentagram and hexagram are given in direct, step-by-step instructions.
  The descriptions of the greater rituals are much more obscure. Instead of a sequence of actions, these rituals are described with sets of lineal figures, gestures, and god-names. Instructions for integrating this information into a ritual are absent. There is good reason for the omission: there is no single greater ritual of the pentagram or hexagram. Unlike the lesser rituals which cover a full array of forces, the greater rituals are used to address only one element or planet at a time, to invoke it for a particular purpose, or to banish it from its established presence. So whereas "lesser banishing pentagram" indicates a well-defined ritual, "greater banishing pentagram" begs the question "of which element?"
 
Dianic Tradition-"We all come from the Goddess, and to Her we will return;
Like a single drop of rain, flowing to the ocean."
  The above could very well be the Dianic creed.  All comes from the Mother; all returns to the Mother.  We are all Goddess, even God. There is no duality or polarity in Dianic wicca.  Everything is a circle, or cycle -- balance is maintained, but there is no polarity.  If one must be angular, one could say they think in trinities -- Maiden, Mother, Crone; Goddess in her stages, guiding lives and years.
  The Dianic tradition is very old.  Aradia, daughter of Artemis, or her human incarnation, came to earth to teach the mysteries to those who would learn.  Her students became teachers in turn, and the tradition was passed down, woman to woman.
  The famous Charge of the Goddess, though a recent writing, is allegedly her instructions to Dianic Traditional memebers.
  Feminist Dianic wicca is a more recent invention.  It is an offshoot of the Women's Liberation Movement.  It became apparent to many women in the movement that there was no spiritual center; women were disenfranchised in so many ways, even by the religious establishment, that a spiritual side was a necessity.  It is difficult to know exactly who started it, but Z Budapest, with her Susan B. Anthony Coven No. 1 in Los Angeles, is definitely one of the founding mothers.
  Dianic wicca can seem extreme, especially the feminist path.  It has been assumed that every Dianic witch is a radical lesbian separatist, hating men and having no use for them.  This isn't true, many of the groups have a larger membership of heterosexual women than lesbians.  They don't necessarily hate men; they hate the patriarchy.
 
Druids-The Druids were the priests and the law in pre-Roman Europe, as well as magicians, scientists, and historians. They were there even before the Gaelic people came. When the Celts took over, they integrated the Druidic religion into their own, and kept the Druids as their priests and lawgivers, since the Celts were content to be the warrior class. The Druids were exempt from military service, being holy people.
   Druids themselves did not allow the writing of their teachings. Writing was considered a memory aid, and they wanted their students to develop their memorization skills. It was also believed that writing something down detracted from its power, demeaning the thing written down. The other reason for the scarcity of writings concerning the Druids is that the Roman priests considered such writings to be heresy, and destroyed all they came across.
  Creation Story - Antiquarians maintain that Druidism as an organized order was founded by Hu Gadarn Hyscion, or Hu the Mighty, when he led a party of settlers from the patriarchal lands of Asia Minor to Britain. However, archeological research indicates that the order originated in Celtic Gaul (from whence it spread to Britain) a few centuries before the Roman conquest. We should also note that the precepts that form "Druidism" as a faith were much older than the actual Druidic order which was probably the descendant of the Celtic equivalents of tribal shamans.
 
Eclectic Witch-Most simply put, an Eclectic Witch is an individual who picks and chooses from many different traditions to create a personalized form of witchcraft that meets his or her own needs and abilities.
 
Gardenarian-The modern witchcraft revival can be largely attributed to Gardner's publishing his non-fiction book Witchcraft Today in 1954. The repeal of the last English witchcraft laws in 1951 made it possible for Gardner, a retired British civil servant with a long career in the Far East, to openly publicize his 'witchy' religion.
   Witchcraft Today described a surviving pre-Christian religion that celebrated the seasonal changes with Sabbats and the lunar cycles with Esbats. The model Gardnerian coven consisted of thirteen people who worked together skyclad during fairly elaborate rituals. The High Priest and High Priestess participated in 'The Great Rite' of ritual sex at least in private if not at coven events. Gardner called this religion 'Wica.' Later another "c" was added to Wica to form the word 'Wicca' commonly used today. Wicca is the Anglo-Saxon word for a male witch according to Baker, who notes that this term had been out of popular usage centuries before Gardner adopted it.
  In the thirty years since Gardner's death in 1964, Wicca has had an amazing growth. This religion obviously fills a need in the lives of people, who seek spirituality but who reject patriarchal and often anti-sexual alternatives. Wicca, or the Craft, is the major path followed by members of a neo-Pagan community now estimated to be 500,000 people by Aidan Kelly, who believes that Wiccans should distinguish between Gardner's Wiccan mythology and its actual history.
   Gardner's source of information about Wicca came purportedly from the New Forest coven in England where he was initiated as a witch in 1939 by 'Old Dorothy' Clutterbuck. He also traced the roots of the New Forest coven back to pre-Christian times, and stated that a handwritten Book of Shadows was the source of their ancient rituals.  However there is some controversy over whether or not this Book of Shadows is authentic, or whether it was written in part by Alister Crowley, and then later written and rewritten by Doreen Valiente, and initiate of Gardener's.
 
Hedge Witch-This practice could be considered the Kitchen Witch of the yard.  As a kitchen with practices focus in the kithchen, a Hedge Witches focus is in the yard.  Earth and other elemental powers are used, fo the most part,  in a solitary fashion.  
 
Hereditary Witch-One who can trace the craft through their family tree and who has been taught the old religion by a relative who is living at the same time.  How far one has to go back on the family tree to meet the conditions of the first part of this definition is debatable.  "Family Traditions" occasionally adopt individuals into their dynasty.  
In my humble opinion there is too much internal debate over this particular tradition.  If as a species we all trace our roots back to the same origin, then wouldn't it make sense that we all were at some point in time related to a witch?  Also if you bring in the basic tenant of reincarnation into the picture, that further clouds this issue.  Just my two cents.
 
Kitchen Witch-Basically this type of witchcraft deals with the hearth and home.  Spells are cast on the stovetop, using the elemental powers.  The dieties are blessed and thanked for the bounty provided.  And are called upon to protect the family and home.  And to keep all members of the home healthy, safe and in harmony.
 
Pecti-Wita-Worshiping and invoking Pan & the Fates exclusively in Pecti-Wita rites. Celebrating only 4 Sabbats throughout the year. They are Samhuinn which according to the Pecti Witan tradition is celebrated on November 11, as the new year. Next is Feill Fionnain (Yule) on December 22, Bealltainn on May 15, and then Feill Sheathain, or Midsummer on July 5.
  The Pecti Wita tradition is mostly a solitary one. The Tradition focuses on a Oneness with nature. It stresses the importance of attunement with the earth and all her bounties. The rites are all held outdoors and a balefire acts as the focal point. There is no casting of a circle, nor calling of any quarters, the fire acting as a sort of inner shrine. The focus of this division of the craft are primarily magickal in nature. The focus is foremost on the practical magickal side and less on the religious ceremonial side. The divine/religious side is the most important part, so Pecti-Wita include the divine everywhere.
 There are a bare minimum of tools used in Pecti Wita. The staff is the primary tool. The dirk, or Athame, the mool, which essentially is an earthen ware bowl filled with soil. The Quaich (chalice, traditionally a horn or gourd) is also used on occasion. The last piece used by the Witan is the Keek Stane, which is a device made by the Witan for Scrying. All these tools must be cleansed, consecrated and charged before use.
  Scottish Witchcraft ,as it is also referred as, is very strong on natural remedies and Herbalism. They learn and study Herbs and their medicinal as well as magickal uses. The knowledge of plants and herbs occurring naturally in the world that are edible and safe is a basic "skill" that all Pecti Witans should master.
 Another important ritual in this tradition is the "survival initiation", or "vision quest". This when a Witan sets out on a 7 day journey into wilderness with nothing but his/her wits and love and reverence for the earth that gave him/her life. This is usually done once and is truly an eye and spirit opening experience. The Witan must make all his/her own shelters, catch and cook all his/her own food, and basically attune him/herself with the earth. Teaching himself/herself respect for all life and the earth by "throwing" him/herself into its arms and trusting that SHE will take care of him/her. Provided the Witan shows the Earth Mother the proper respect and honor SHE deserves, all will be well.
  The ancient Picts of Scotland also had their own runic alphabet as well as their own method of writing known as Swirl.
 
Pictish Witchcraft-"Pictish-Elven" is meant to signify a subset or offshoot of the so-called Feri or Fairy Tradition as adumberated by Victor Anderson and represented by the late Gwydion Pendderwen, Starhawk (especially in the first book), and Francesca De Grandis, author of the recent Be a Goddess. Although it is a word strongly rooted in Germanic and Scandinavian pagan belief and language (fairy is more common and older in the British Isles and where English overlays a Celtic substratum as with Ireland, Scotland, etc.), "elven" is meant to carry a higher, nobler, more awe-inspiring nuance than "fairy," even while doing the job of a synonym. The "Pictish" element is meant to bring back to the fore one central thread of the Tradition, as taught by Victor,about which, for some reason , none of the aforementioned authors has even whispered so much as a single word. I refer to the legend that the Feri Tradition carries on and embodies the legacy and lineage of the pre-Christian mystery cult of the Picts, the pre-Scottish inhabitants of what is now Scotland. Francesca De Grandis, in her book Be a Goddess does (briefly) discuss the Blue God "Dian-y-Glas," but does not point out that the name is supposed to be in Pictish or address any of the issues dependant thereof.
   This tradition is very old and intense.  And very hard to find compitent information on.  Mostly web information that is eclectic in nature.
 
Pow-Wow-Also known as Pennsylvania Dutch Hexcraft.  In Northern Pennsylvania, German settlers began arriving in the late 17th century, the bulk of them immigrating in the first half of the 18th century. The term Pennsylvania "Dutch" is a corruption of the German word "Deutch" meaning German. Silver RavenWolf lives in Pennsylvania and describes this magical tradition in HexCraft. She has Pennsylvania Dutch ancestors, as I also do.
   Two distinct groups of German immigrants came to Pennsylvania. The Fancy Germans, or Lutherans, brought their elaborate folk history with them, including the ornate customs of Christmas and Easter, the Yule tree and log, colorful decorations, baskets, and pictures of bunnies. The other German group was the Plain or Pietist Germans. They included members of the Mennonite, Amish, Dunker, and Brethern denominations. The Plain Germans wore distinctive clothing and tried to live a simple rural life-style guided by their interpretation of the Bible. Some of the pow-wowers Silver RavenWolf interviewed were Brethren, Mennonites, and Dunkers.
   South central Pennsylvania was fertile and not physically isolated, as were the southern Appalachians. Hexcraft, or pow-wow, as it is locally called, survived because of the tendency of both Fancy and Plain Germans to live in tightly knit communities, where they preserved their customs and language into the 20th century.
  Native Americans were present, at least initially, when the Germans arrived and the term pow-wow was possibly derived from the early settlers' observations of Indian pow wows. Silver RavenWolf thinks the word pow-wow may also be a derivative of the word power or may come from the Native American pow wow definition meaning "he who dreams."
   Pow-wowing includes some charms and incantations dating from the Middle Ages plus elements borrowed from the Jewish Qabala and Christian Bible. Pow-wowing generally focuses on healing minor health problems, the protection of livestock, success in love, and the casting or removing of hexes. For over 200 years, pow-wowers have considered themselves to be staunch Christians endowed with supernatural powers to both heal and harm.
   Hex signs are the most widely recognized symbols associated with pow-wow magic. The word hex means a spell or bewitchment and comes from the German word hexe for witch. Hex signs are round magical signs and symbols used primarily to protect against hexerie (witchcraft). They were used by the Fancy Dutch but not the Amish and strict Mennonites.
   Some hex symbols and designs originate in the Bronze Age. Ancient Celtic and Germanic tribes put emphasis on the energy patterns of the divine Source rather than its representation as a human archetype. The Source was depicted in universal designs that assisted in focusing power either toward or away from the design. The basic pattern found in the original hex signs is the double rosette, which is found at many ancient European holy sites.
   Most of the charms used in pow-wow magic were originally described in two books. The first book, Long Lost Friend, was written in 1820 by John George Hohman. He was a German Catholic immigrant who documented various charms and herbal remedies that had been preserved orally for centuries. The second book is the anonymous Seventh Book of Moses, also called the Sixth and Seventh Books of Moses. This book contains a mixture of wisdom derived from the Talmud, Qabala, and Old Testament. Silver RavenWolf says these two books were once found in almost all Pennsylvania Dutch households.
  Pow-wow tools include common items such as spools of red and black thread, a ball of red yarn, several lengths of red and black ribbons, small hand-made ceramic bowls, a seam ripper, a creek stone (divinity stone) and a container of holy water. Red and white are the basic colors used in pow-wow.
  Pow-wowing was still common in the early 20th century. Gradually over time, several local murders were attributed to pow-wowers. One belief held by some pow-wowers was that a curse could be broken by killing the person who placed it. Pow-wowing rapidly declined in the 1920s when the news media portrayed it as an embarrassing example of backward and superstitious Pennsylvania Dutch behavior. While researching her book, Silver RavenWolf found only elderly pow-wow practitioners, who often lived in local nursing homes.
 
Satanic Witch-The Satanist, is his own God. Satan is a symbol of Man living as his prideful, carnal nature dictates. The reality behind Satan is simply the dark evolutionary force that permeates all of nature and provides the drive for survival and propagation inherent in all living things. Thus Satan is not a conscious entity to be worshipped, rather a reservoir of power inside each human to be tapped at will. Thus any concept of sacrifice is rejected as a Christian aberration. There's no diety to which one can sacrifice. Satanists do have experience of the super-normal in their practice of ritual or Greater Magic. This is a technique for influencing the outcome of human events to desired ends via reaching an extreme emotional state in the context of a ritual, sending forth a vision of what you want to occur (the Is To Be), which, if your levels of adrenaline are high enough, will permeate the unconscious minds of those you wish to influence, causing them to behave as you will when the time is right. This does not mean that anything is possible, for it takes a great deal of energy to make a strong sending, and it is often difficult to influence events from the inertia of their present directions. Awareness of your abilities and what is possible to achieve is the hallmark of a successful Satanic magician. Satanists also practice Lesser Magic which is basically the day to day manipulation of your fellows to obtain your ends.
 
"Satanism is a religion of the flesh. Happiness for the Satanist must be found here and now.
There exists no heaven to go to after death, nor fiery hell as a punishment for the sinner".  (C.O.S.)
 
LaVey's rituals and ceremonies contain the following concepts:
 
 Names used include Satan, Lucifer, Belial and Leviathan.
 Ceremonies are pageants, which are used to celebrate a person or element of faith.
 Magick rituals consist of three types:
Sex magic (includes masturbation),
Healing or happiness ritual, and
Destruction ritual (may include sticking pins in a doll; drawing a picture or writing a description of the victim's death; delivering a soliloquy, etc.). Destruction rituals are best performed by a group. If a person targeted by a destruction ritual is not deserving of it, the ritual will not harm them.  
Male Satanists wear full length black robes, with or without a hood.
 Young women wear sexually suggestive clothing; older women wear all black.
 All Satanists wear amulets with the symbol of Baphomet.
Altar: When the Satanic Bible was written (1969) a nude woman was customarily used as an altar, since Satanism is regarded as a religion of the flesh, not of the spirit. She reclined on an altar that was trapezoidal in shape, about 1 m high and 2 m long and placed against the West wall of the room. Her head pointed South. A live altar is now rarely used.
 One white candle is placed to the right of the altar; it symbolizes the belief of Satanists in the hypocrisy of "White Magicians" and Wiccans because of the latter's insistence on doing no harm to others. At least one black candle, representing the Powers of Darkness, is placed to the left of the altar. These powers are sources of energy which are currently unknown and hidden. Additional black candles are oriented as needed to provide sufficient illumination.
 The following tools are used:  A bell is rung nine times at the beginning and end of the ritual; the Satanic priest rotates counter-clockwise as he rings the bell.
A chalice is ideally made of silver; it may not be formed of gold because that is a metal that Satanists believe that Wiccans use; LaVey's followers attempt to distance themselves as much as possible from Wicca. In fact, Wiccans use chalices made of various metals and other materials, including silver.
 Other ritual tools include a gong, sword, elixir (usually wine), phallus, and parchment. They and the chalice and bell are placed on a small table near the altar.
    The language used during magical ritual is Enochian, whose words variously sounds similar to Arabic, Hebrew or Latin. It was revealed to Dr. John Dee, court astrologer and metaphysician to Queen Elizabeth I.
  I felt it necessary to include the rituals and tools described above for the sole reason that, though many would disagree with me, Satanism and Wicca have many similarities.  Although the basic tenents differ, the base tools and rituals are similar.  And for those who say that Witches don't worship Satan, this is a correct statement.  But technically, Satanists don't worship the entity Satan either.  they worship themselves and carnal pleasures.  Do Satanists preform "spells"?  Yes.  The energies differ from that of "true witches", and the entities are very diferent from the dieties and elements used in withcraft.
 
Seax-Wica-Seax (or Saxon) Wica was started by Raymond Buckland, who was originally a leader in promoting the Gardnerian Tradition, as an alternative to the existing Covens. Unlike most traditions, which consider the Coven group to be the normal unit of division (all ceremonies and /or Rituals equal group Rites), the Seax version has provision for solitary witches.  Another thing which sets this particular tradition apart is its non-reliance upon being properly initiated into the Wiccan community. Many of the other traditions require that new members be brought to existing covens to be ceremonially initiated into that tradition, and that only after years of study within the group is one ready to start a new coven. The Seax tradition, allows for self-initiation, and automatic setup of a Coven.
 
Shaminism-Shamanism has no dogma and very few rules because it is about doing, experiencing, and knowing. It is, perhaps, a difficult path because it requires you to walk under the direction of your heart and higher mind. It's goal is a mergence between the physical aspect that you call yourself, and the part of you which is Spirit, and the classes are held here, upon this Earth School.
In learning the techniques of Shamanism, you learn to participate in realms of experience which differ from physical reality, these realms are sometimes called Non-ordinary Reality, but they are very real. To the evolving conscious spirit reality has many levels and only a small portion of the Greater Reality is revealed to the physical senses. So one would strive to open the inner eyes and other senses so that more and more of the Greater Reality is experienced and learned from.
  There are only two basic tenets in Shamanism. The first is to recognize that everything that exists is divine. And the second is to recognize that everything that exists is connected. The tools that are used to learn these two tenets are the Shamanic Journey and Consciousness Expansion. These two tools are all one needs to begin to explore the many dimensions and levels of reality which surround us at all times.
  Shamanism requires one to find our way back to a simpler, and more open and honest relationships with ourselves, each other, and the universe.
Shamanism is often called the path of the Great Alone because much of the work is done alone. As you learn, you come to the realization that you, as an  individual have the ability and potential to become your own prophet and that each of us is capable of receiving spiritual revelation directly from the highest sources. This is done by getting back to the basics of common human nature, our ancestry, and by learning to directly connect with the plants, animals, and the planet itself. This is done by very simple means; you practice daily to expand your awareness so that it includes these other beings in your normal thought process; this is most usually done with Journeys, communion with the All, and vision quests and daily practice.
Shamanism doesn't use many tools because its basic precept is that our bodies, minds, and hearts ARE the only tools we have need of.
 
Solitary Witch-Practices alone.  The difference, between a solitary and one who chooses a Coven, based on my opinion and the following facts:
   A coven does allow for the raising of more power (the collective efforts being greater than a single one). But it also allows for the increase in conflicts and disputes between the members. Such disputes can, and frequently do, limit the effect of the coven and, inhibit the abilities of the members. A coven makes for a more festive celebration during Rituals, but unless great care is taken, the celebration finds itself drifting away from the meaning of the festival. Some covens place hidden pressure on the individual to appease his/her peers. Although most all members of a coven will refute this, deep within their being, they are all aware of times when their actions were affected by their desire to please other members.
   Solitary witches suffer from none of this. No peer pressure, no disputes with a group, and a more focused celebration of the Sabbats and festivals. But being solitary, does include a sense of isolation, a lack of like minds with which to communicate. Inevitably though the solitary immerses him/herself deeper into the craft, attempting to find solace in Nature, within the Goddess herself. History illustrates that the majority of known practitioners were solitary. Completely in tune with the forces of Nature, but out of step with the mainstream of society.
 
Strega Witchcraft-Italian witchcraft. The tradition began in the mid-14th Century with the teachings of Aradia, the Holy Strega. This was based upon a much earlier system of beliefs, dating back to the pre-Etruscian Italians. It is a worship of the "Source of All Things", through the personification of the Goddess and God. There are many things that are similar between Stregheria & Wicca. Strega uses nature in all of its teachings. Nature is considered the "Great Teacher". There is a deep history based upon Aradia's Teachings, as well as a prophecy given to us in the Mythos, which speaks of the coming "Age of Daughter", when reason will rule. The Stregan view of the afterlife is that you return to the Realm of Luna as the moon waxes, and return to Earth as the moon wanes. When you are ready, you pass through the Sun to be made into your new bodies for your return to the Stars. Strega use the term Grigori, who are the Watchers, and Guardians over their rites. And the Grimas, who keep the traditions pure and continuing. The Lare are the spirits of their ancestors, whom they worship and call upon for help and aid. Family and tradition are of utmost importance, and this is what gives this Tradition its strength and power.
  According to Tuscan legend, Aradia was the daughter of Diana and Lucifer (who's name means the "light bearer"). After dwelling in heaven for apart of her life, Aradia's mother sent her down to earth to teach the arts of magick to all Witches of the human race. When her purpose was completed, she was called back to the heavens and bestowed with the power to grant the desires of worthy witches who invoked her. According to Charles Leland's Aradia: The Gospel of the Witches, a Witch must enter a field at midnight bearing water, wine, a talisman, and a small red bag that is filled with salt and at all times held in the hand. Before asking a favor from Aradia, the Witch must bless herself with the water and wine, and then recite her loyalty to the goddess. It is said that Aradia can grant a Witch the abilities to heal the sick, communicate with the dead, foresee the future, and bless friends. Many Wiccans and Neo-Pagans consider Aradia to be a lunar deity like her mother Diana and invoke her at full moon Esbats and other rituals.
   The word "Stregheria" in Italian means "Witchcraft". Also, in Italian there are a few ways to say the word "Witch", they are: "Strega" which means a female Witch and "Stregone" means a male Witch.
 
Thelema-Combines methods and traditions of both East and West: the Wisdom of Asia's yoga and of Europe's Hermetic Qabalah.  IN 1904, the British poet, magician, and philosopher, Aleister Crowley, received the channeled dictation of a book called Liber Legis, or The Book of the Law. The old grade ceremonies of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn have been recrafted to conform to Thelemic symbols and principles, but remain true to the original patterns called the "Cipher Manuscript Formulae."  There are marked differences between Temple of Thelema and the original Golden Dawn order.  In the fashion of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (a British Hermetic and Qabalistic fellowship founded in 1887), the work is divided into a series of degrees, or steps, based on a Qabalistic diagram called the Tree of Life. More practical instruction has been added in the early degrees, incorporating much that has been learned in the last century concerning self-exploration, the attaining of self-knowledge, and the internal processes of transformation or regeneration.  
  Operating on a "Three Ray" model of balanced development of Wisdom, Love, and Power, based upon practical methods that include intellectual training, meditation, and magical ritual at every stage of progress. Integrating these three forms is a Unifying quality that is the essence of self-knowledge.
  The initiation rituals and other ceremonies are frequently described by members as having a tremendous beauty and strength. The regular group ceremonial celebrations, and the ongoing group healing work which is performed, are central to the training method.
   Members of this tradition have mystical and magickal lessons to perform both at home and in a group with other members.  Most of their ceremonial work is performed in a private group setting, open only to initiated members. However, a few functions are open to the general public during the course of each year.
 
Teutonic-Revival of an older Nordic Tradition.  Modern practice of this Northern Tradition is rapidly evolving. It explores the mythologies of Northern Europe and the mysteries of the runes. It is a way of life embracing values of loyalty, honor, courage and good fellowship. It emphasizes communing with the Divine as well as embracing the practice of magic for healing and spiritual development.
 This ancient Pagan religion was known as Asatru, an old Norse word which means Troth (loyalty) to the Gods.
  This tradition recognizes many familiar Gods and Goddesses. Thor is the Thunderer, the wielder of the divine Hammer Mjolnir. The thunder is the sound of his chariot, the rain his gift that allows the crops to prosper. Odin, the Allfather, is the God who gifted mankind with a divine nature. He is the One eyed God, who traded his eye for wisdom, and hung on the world tree to learn the mysteries of magic and the runes. Odin receives slain warriors in his hall, where they prepare for the final battle of Ragnarok. Frey is a God of peace and plenty who is King of the Elves and brings fertility and prosperity to the land. But a religion without Goddesses is halfway to atheism. The most well known Goddess of this tradition is Freya, who wears the sacred necklace Brisingamen and rides in her cat drawn chariot. She is the Goddess of love and beauty, but she is also a fierce Goddess of battle and takes half the battle-slain to her. Frigg is Odin's wife, and she shares in his leadership of the Gods. She is the only other deity allowed to sit in Odin's Seat from which she can see all of the Nine Worlds, and is the patron of the household and of married women. Living alone in the icy wastes, Skadi is a Goddess of strong independence and a patron of hunting and of skiing. Other Gods and Goddesses are worshipped by this tradition include Tyr, Balder, Eir, Gefjion, and many others.
 "From ancient time the Teutons have been recognized as a group of people who speak the Germanic group of languages. Culturally, this included the English, Dutch, Icelandic, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish peoples. This is also known as the Nordic Tradition.  
A Teutonic Witch often finds inspiration in the traditional myths and legends, Gods and Goddesses of the areas where these dialects originated." Silver RavenWolf, and about 1000 websites.
 
Wiccan Witch-This tradition combines the beliefs of Wicca with the "workings" of Witchcraft.  It can be based on an eclectic, solitary, or any other type of tradition.  Wiccans tend to do "self motivated" magick.  Whereas Witches do magick for the "greater good".  Again, this is subjective, depending on the individuals beliefs.  This particular tradition can be very wide ranging.  From doing healing work only, to doing love spells for friends.  It can include crystal magick, candle magick, herb magick, meditation, auras, chakras, and any combination that the individual feels "comfortable" with.  
 
Witchcraft-Webster's Dictionary definition:</B> <B>witchcraft-a form of sorcery, or the magical manipulation of nature for self-aggrandizement, or for the benefit or harm of a client. This manipulation often involves the use of spirit-helpers, or familiars.
  Public uses of magic are generally considered beneficial; sorcery, on the other hand, is commonly practiced in private and is usually considered malevolent. Nevertheless, accusations of sorcery are frequently public and explicit. Anthropologists have observed that in societies that lack formal political processes, sorcery accusations are often an indication of other social and economic tensions and conflicts. They have analyzed the killing of accused sorcerers as a form of control through which antisocial people are eliminated and social cohesion is reinforced. Anthropologists distinguish sorcerers, who acquire their powers through study and initiation, from witches, who inherit their powers. In some cultures, especially European, however, the two terms are used interchangeably.
  European diabolical witchcraft was a form of sorcery that appealed to pre-Christian symbolism and was associated by Church leaders with heresy. The origins of witchcraft in Europe are found in the pre-Christian, pagan cults such as the Teutonic nature cults, Roman religion, and the speculations of the Gnostics (see Gnosticism), the Zoroastrians, and the Manicheans. These pagan religions and philosophies believed in a power of evil and a power of good within the universe. Later, among certain sects, the worship of good was repudiated as false and misleading.
  Religious persecution of supposed witches commenced early in the 14th century. Trials, convictions, and executions became common throughout Europe and reached a peak during the 16th and 17th centuries. Under the authority of the Spanish Inquisition, as many as 100 persons were burned as witches in a single day. The auto-da-fé, as this mass burning was called, took on the qualities of a carnival, where one could buy souvenirs, rosaries, holy images, and food. Suspicion also fell on many who were interested in scientific experimentation. The colonies of North America shared in this fanaticism, particularly in Salem, Mass., where in 1692, 20 persons were executed as witches.
  Early students of European diabolical witchcraft viewed it alternately as an invention of elites who used accusations of sorcery as an excuse to persecute people for material gain, or as a survival of pre-Christian folk religion. Scholars today seek to interpret it not as a single phenomenon but rather as a complex pattern of beliefs and practices that have been used in different ways at different times. Thus, during the Hundred Year Wars, Catholics and Protestants accused each other of witchcraft.
  In the 20th century there has been a revival of witchcraft known as Wicca, or Neo-Pagans. This form of witchcraft has nothing to do with sorcery, and is instead based on a reverence for nature, the worship of a fertility goddess, a restrained hedonism, and group magic aimed at healing. It rejects a belief in Satan as a product of Christian doctrine that is incompatible with paganism.
 
 I included Webster's definition for two reasons.  One that it conveys a "middle of the road" definition.  In other words, not a strictly pagan, nor Christian viewpoint.  The second reason is because like every other tradition listed above, every persons definition will vary according to their perception.  Perception is reality, so if you believe a Witch to be an evil, old hag, then that is what you will see as "your" reality.  If you perceive a Witch as being a caring, healing, wise person, than that is what you will see as "your" reality.  Many of the above definitions therefore are what I perceive as reality.  As in my definition of an Athame, I have learned, on "my path", that an Athame is a single edged, dull knife, with a one sided blade.  Most people will say that it is a double edged dull knife, usually having a black handle.  That is their reality.  A Druid will tell you that an Athame is a small sickle.  That became their reality when Caesar passed laws making it illegal for them to carry a dagger of any kind.  
 My point to all this babbling is that, there are so many traditions which have branched out over the years.  And since so many have established themselves as "normal" and/or "right,' and/or "correct", we can only choose what "our" reality tells us is fitting for us.  Also, so many take bits and pieces from other traditions and change them enough to fit into their own "reality", that it becomes a war of semantics in most cases.  Of course this is just my humble opinion, and that like my reality can, and hopefully will change with growth, learning, wisdom and understanding.