Not until high school did I consciously acknowledge being gay. I couldn't understand it myself, but I knew I felt different about the boys in my class. When religion class turned into morality class where we discussed such topics as suicide, abortion, and homosexuality—in a single moment, the world came crashing down around me, and I confirmed all my feelings about not fitting into the whole. I intensely believed in something, but it no longer believed in me, or so I was told. The words “love the sinner, hate the sin” rang hollow for me, since I still felt hated, yet had not done anything at all. Then witchcraft opened a new world for me. An old friend of the family slowly introduced me to Wicca, the modern religion of witchcraft. The foundations were in ritual, the cycles of nature, ancient Goddess reverence, psychic awareness, and personal development. Witchcraft embraced ancient philosophies and practices from all around the world. So many beliefs fit my own. I never believed in the Christian devil, the source of evil. Contrary to popular belief, witches do not worship the devil. They believe it to be a construct of various organizations to control other people, a target of blame, and a scapegoat. Witches believe in self-responsibility, since all you do comes back to you. Many authors of the neo-witchcraft movement cite a greater acceptance of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered people because of our ancient ties. Several ancient cultures honored such people my people—for their unique energies and perspective. A few modern groups, or covens, are exclusively gay or lesbian, though parts of the Wiccan community are as homophobic as the mainstream community is.
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