Halloween and Witches: Some Facts
Halloween will see excited kids and adults dress up in customes. Some will reveal hidden fantasies or political fun-making. Many little girls will put on a witch custume without any background. Most will tell you that witches fly on broomsticks and are evil. Few boys will be wizards or warlocks – even though these males existed alongside witches of past days. The nearest a boy may get to a wizard is to don on a “Harry Potter” custume and wave a magic wand.
The Word “Witch”
Etmylologists seem to be unsure of the origin of the word “witch.” The nearest is the Old English word “wicce” whicfh translates as “female sorceress.” Today, many people belong to the Wicca movement.
Witches Were NOT Burned in the Thirteen Colonies!
The word for burning by death is called ‘immolation.’ In the Salem witch trials of the 13 Colonies, it was against English Law to burn a witch. In 1692, all Salem females accused of being witches were burned. One man was also accused and he was pressed to death.
Women – Descendents of ‘Evil” Eve
For many years, the Christian Church saw women in four categories:
- Celibate Nuns. 2. Widows. 3. Virgins. 4. Married Women.
Behind the vestments of popes, bishops, priests and monks lay the common belief that most women still carried with them the ‘sin’ of Eve.
She was taught to have ‘tempted’ Adam and that this trait lay in all women – beware of seductive women! It did not seem to occur to them that Adam was a ‘wimp,’ a boneless creature who just could not say ‘no’ to temptation.
In this same thought pattern, it was easy to place women into the category of witches. Men were in awe of a woman’s power to give birth, but like their Jewish ancestor priests – the blood of a woman (at the time of birth and during her monthly flow) was deemed to be ‘sinful.’ Hence, Mary – the mother of Jesus had to be ‘cleansed’ in the Jewish Temple after the birth of Jesus. (The account is in the Gospels).
Men knew that women were natural healers and this threatened the male medical practioners. Women used natural herbs and plants for healing purposes, while men seemed to prefer to use tools to invade the body.
King Alfred the Great of England (893 AD) subscribed the power of witches to women.
Witch Hunts Turned Nasty!
Many countries were involved in witch-hunting. Germany seemed to lead the way. the town of Trier witnessed 368 executions for witchcraft that resulted in non-discrimination: Rich and poor- men, women and children.
Leading figures – judges, priests, councilors, scholars. The year was 1581 and it lasted until 1593.
What About ‘Good Witch’ Custumes?
Gilda was the ‘good witch’ in the film, “The Wizard of Oz.”
Today, it is note-worthy that in Western medical schools, females equal men. We are still light-years away from where ‘western’ medicine will
work hand-in-hand with ‘natural’ (Naturopathy).
Let us all be ‘healers’ for one another.