This is hardly the first time I’ve had to start over. I thought the snake that sheds skin was a good metaphor, and hey, I want to use more of my own photos in blogging anyway.
So – some feedback from my writer’s group made it clear I need to make the handparting book more clear in both background and intentions. Starting with the inevitable “what is Wicca?” speech that’s been obligatory since the first mass-consumption book about Wicca was written.
Here’s a small sampling of the foreword I’m writing:
“Most people inclined to pick up this book are Wiccan, or are neopagan, or know enough about ritual religions to want to borrow a well known ritual to fit in to his or her own spiritual needs. But just in case you’re merely curious as to what on earth handparting, Wicca, or handfasting is, the following points will clear a few things up.
First, Wicca is a religion with as many traditions as Christianity has denominations. Within Wicca, there is just as much quibbling about whose tradition bears the torch of legitimacy, much the same as Christians who argue about which Bible gets used post which reformation. Wicca is currently a fringe religion – the fringe status is rapidly changing to “simple minority” – that is part of what might be called the neopagan religious subculture. Wicca is one of many religions that anchors its spirit on concepts outside monotheism.
Wicca has no core mythology of its own, but contains a loose set of beliefs surrounding a usually benign mother goddess figure, the name and character of which can come from nearly any world mythology. In some traditions the mother Goddess has a husband or consort, sometimes he’s just not in the picture. Along with honoring the seasons and moon phases by adopting from the Celtic calendar, Wicca runs on a moral guideline that believes moral absolutism can cause destruction, and that different situations call for different decisions.”
Remember, there are entire books dedicated to the spokes beneath the neopagan umbrella. Mostly I’m writing about Wicca and divorce here.