here's part of an email I sent to a friend today that I thought I'd share (he wanted to know how I became Wiccan):
First, some background. I was raised in an Episcopalian family, my mother is fairly religious and I don't think my dad really is. When I was around 7, I rebelled from my parents, deciding that I could think for myself, so I declared myself Jewish (I knew little of religion then, and I assumed that anyone who wasn't Christian was Jewish). That lasted for a few hours, considering that all I knew about Jews were that they celebrated Hanukkah (or however you spell it). After that I was pretty much an atheist, though I experimented with Greek, Egyptian, and Native American mythology. I went to Catholic school for a few years, which was interesting, but I realized that I definitely wasn't Catholic. I really respected Mary and Jesus (particularly Mary, and I still do), but I just couldn't deal with the rules of the religion and would question the views every day. Finally I got sick of it and went back to public school, where I did more experimenting, particularly with Hinduism (which is a really cool religion, and I adore Ganesha, the elephant-headed deity).
Now the real story. Let's go back in time about 3 1/2 years ago. It's the last day of 10th grade, and after school my friends and I go to Wendy's and then the mall. We go to a bookstore, and I find this book called "Teen Witch" by Silver Ravenwolf. It looks cool, so I flip through it and decide to buy it. I go home, read it, and find out that there's this religion called "Wicca" that is probably the most misunderstood religion in the US. Suddenly I start really thinking about religion and what I believe. Everything starts to make sense. Over the summer I learn more and more about it, but I don't really start following it until I go to camp. During camp, I meet this really nice girl named Andrea. I find out she's Wiccan. I also develop a crush on her (the first time I had a crush on a girl, so that thoroughly confused me, but that's another story). She recommends "Wicca: A guide for the solitary practitioner" by Scott Cunningham, and we discuss religion a lot. One day we're out in the middle of the woods with some friends, refusing to participate in the scavenger hunt-type game going on. While walking back to the game, Andrea slips and basically dislocates her knee. We help her to the nurse, and afterwards I can't stop worrying about her. I check with the nurse and find she's in the hospital. I go back to my cabin, and it occurs to me that I can help her by sending healing energy. So I get to work, raising as much energy as I can, visualizing her with a healthy knee, and basically praying until I'm worn out. That night I get up to go to the bathroom before bed, and I run into Andrea, back from the hospital. She says she's all right, but she can't do certain physical activities. I walk back to my cabin, completely amazed. Sure, it might not have been a serious injury to begin with, but I think I really did help her. A day or two later, her knee is all better. After camp, I buy the book she suggested, and it's just amazing. I get more and more into the religion, and a few months later I decide that it's the perfect religion for me. So I start practicing, come out of the "broom closet," and dispell a few myths at my predominantly Christian, white, upper middle class, etc. high school. I eventually meet several other Wiccans, over the internet and through friends, so I know I'm not alone. The more I practice, the more I learn. And that's my story.
Today was yet another unproductive day. I have homework to do and letters to write, but of course I sat at the computer all day. I'm silly. I had a headache yesterday, which is weird because I almost never have headaches. The "Age of Mythology" game is incredibly addicting. I keep playing the trial version, and I love it. I was on the computer so much that when I looked in the mirror at night, my eyes were bloodshot. Sheesh Ade, get a life.
I had a weird idea yesterday. What if there was a Jesus game? Like for Nintendo or something. You could control this little pixellated Jesus and have him walk around the middle east. He could shoot little hearts at people to convert them (bonus points for children!) and zap sick people with healing rays to make them better. He could collect disciples and little fish symbols for extra "ammo" and shoot little hearts at demons to make them go away. Then when he collected enough points, an angry mob would crucify him and he could go to level 2. At level 2 he would descend to hell and make his way through the lake of fire (kind of like Dante's Inferno) and then he could duel it out with Satan. Then when he beat the game, he could go back to earth and make a grand exit. That would be fun. *ahem* Sorry if I offended anyone with that. These are the crazy ideas I get while eating crappy Brooks food.
*jams to "The Forbidden Zone" soundtrack*