Uncover hidden spiritual meanings

Initiate: A person who is seeking to join a coven, group, or organization and is still going through the initial training or qualitative stages before actually being a full member.

This can also refer to someone being an initiate of a grade that is already part of the organization, coven, or group but is in a lower tier of training and therefore they are an initiate of a 2nd circle, inner circle, or next cord/phase.

When a person agrees to an initiation they traditionally are agreeing to take on the lesson of the grade or experience but also more responsibility. As a person grows with their education and their spirituality so does their awareness. Initiates may know much about one subject but generally also accept the fact that there is more to learn.

Initiation: The actual ceremony where one is initiated into a coven, group, or religion.

The most important initiation into the Wicca tradition is a rite of initiation. It is normally considered as a rite of passage meaning that, the initiate is now being reborn into Wicca. The initiation process is normally taken with uttermost seriousness by members and it can be quite a long process. A student of Wicca who is normally referred as a neophyte is only allowed to begin initiation after studying with the school and the church of Wicca and meeting the requirements of the course. He is not allowed to blatantly ask to be initiated; the teacher is the one who elects a neophyte for initiation.

The rites of initiation are normally performed during summer on a new moon phase. Due to the fact that the initiation is normally a private matter, group initiation is not allowed and it is only attended by an initiate and the initiator, or the initiator and their priestess or priest working together with the initiate. The initiator is supposed to be of the opposite sex to the initiate so as to reflect the female/male polarity of the goddess and the god.

Initiation is done at different levels and it is required of the neophyte to undergo the first initiation when they have some experience of the Craft and they need to learn the basics of the Wicca like casting the circle, chants, energy, and Coven etiquette. The first stage of initiation is an indicator that the neophyte is now being introduced to the goddess. The ceremony starts with the initiate being nude and it is a challenging process. There is an ordeal which is performed and vows are made then the initiate symbolically finishes wearing the Wiccan ritual robe. That is the first-degree acquisition. Many people never reach to get the second degree.

The second initiation for the second degree is meant for Witches who want to improve their Craft and want to be more involved in rituals, helping new initiates, and the running of the Coven and its circles. It is hard to find the second-degree initiates because they are normally advised not to reveal their status.

The two degrees are different; the first-degree initiation is all about focusing on the goddess while the second-degree initiation introduces the horned god into the picture. The horned god is the male counterpart of the goddess. Before one undergoes the second-degree initiation, they have to wait for one year and a day after being initiated into the first degree. Though the rites for both male and female are different, both ceremonies involve a vigil and an ordeal. After one is initiated, they become High Priest and High Priestess respectively, and they then have an obligation to educate and support neophytes.

For the third degree initiation, very few people make it to this initiation because it is very involving. Apart from having to quit the current job and relocating to a different town, they are only allowed to take with them the outfit they are wearing plus only $100. It is only designed for people who are ready to start a new Coven.

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By Florance Saul
Oct 2, 2012