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Glossary of Wiccan, Neo-Pagan and Occult Terminology

CHALLENGE

An example of the 'Challenge'         The moment at the beginning of an Initiation ceremony into a Wiccan Coven when the candidate is met, at the gateway, by the point of the Initiator's Athame or ritual sword whereupon the demand is made to know if the candidate possesses the courage to pass from the world of men into that of the Lords of the Outer Spaces (the challenge may vary from Coven to Coven).

If the candidate accepts the challenge and rejects fear, he or she may pass through the gate and on towards symbolic rebirth as a Wiccan.


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PLEASE NOTE:
One of the major problems with 'defining' Paganism and/or its beliefs and practices is that it is an 'organic' movement, in that it is undergoing constant change and re-evaluation from within, and as such any 'one-size-fits-all' approach to understanding Paganism will be found wanting.

Due to the very 'organic' nature of Paganism, and the many differing Paths and Traditions within it, in many cases no one definition may be universally accepted by all Pagans.   Therefore, where such cases of possible conflicting and/or contradictory meanings of certain terms occur I have endevoured to give not only the generally accepted meaning, but also any major 'variations' in belief and/or practice.

Christians who believe this difference in meaning of certain key terms, beliefs and practices to be unique to Paganism need to remember that such conflicts also arise within the Body of Christ - the Church.   Take for instance the differing practices amongst Christians concerning Baptism and the different attitudes towards women in the clergy.

- Jean-Luc



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