Aldwyn, Founding HP
In 1985, Aldwyn desired to become a Roman Catholic priest. Talked out of it by the monsignor he was interviewing with, he wanted to serve Deity in another way, but took quite some time to find what was right for him.
Things led to things, and then...
In 1993, due to some friends who were "into it", (and a few interesting magickal experiments!) Aldwyn started to become interested in witchcraft, and a religion he had never heard of until this time: Wicca. He grabbed a couple of books ("What Witch's Do", by Stewart Farrar, and "The Complete Book of Witchcraft", by Raymond Buckland, if you want to get picky!) and while the content intimidated him somewhat, he felt compelled to learn more, and signed up for a "Wicca 101" class at a local coven.
Half-way through the class, he became disillusioned with the group, and it's HP and left the said group. But the time he spent reading, and with the info he did get from the class, he knew that he was supposed to be not only practicing in this new religion, but serving as a priest in it.
Not being able to find any other group in the area at the time, Aldwyn moved to the Internet, and ran into Kim Huff, a Blue Star Tradition HPS who took him on as an on-line student. While studying with Kim, Aldwyn continued to keep his eyes and ears open... and stumbled onto some of the old members of the coven he had left previous (they had also become disillusioned and left). He started to study under them, and after a year and a half, was initiated as a first degree Wiccan (Celtic Tradition) in September of 1996. He jumped right into the accelerated learning program (which he would NOT recommend to anyone now that he has been through it!) and immediately started to study for his second degree. After much blood, sweat and tears, he elevated to a second degree priest in February of 1998. After much much more blood, sweat and tears, he elevated to a third degree High Priest in December of 2003.
Aldwyn also studied under Silver Ravenwolf's Black Forest tradition, and took a first degree in that tradition as well. Aldwyn is more then likely listed in the Black Forest rolls as "inactive family" and occasionally attends the annual gathering at Silver's place, but no longer practices Black Forest tradition.
He would also like to study Gardnerian someday, because of it's history, and it's use and form of ritual.
Aldwyn has taught a traditional Wicca 101 course, and has written and given several workshops, for Sylvan Circle's Introductory Wicca lecture series, on topics such as: The Witch's Tools & the Altar, Spellcasting 101, Wiccan Laws, the Elements, Wiccan Traditions, and Sacred Chants. His specialties in the coven are Rhythm in Magick and Meditation, as well as Magickal Cords.
Aldwyn has worked both solitary, and with two covens. He prefers the coven life, despite it's drawbacks! :-) He is a founding member of Sylvan Circle, and an initiating priest within the coven.
He reads tarot (and collects decks for the heck of it!), people's personal energy, channels, and scrys.
He has worked with many gods and goddesses (and usually prefers to work with the general God and Goddess energies), though his primary Deities are Mary (aka Virgin Mary, left over from his Roman Catholic years!) and his god-head is Ganesha from Hinduism.
Egos annoy him (he satires the typical egotistical webpage with his mundane webpage!) and people calling themselves a high priest or priestess, or calling themselves "lord" or "lady" when they have not achieved a traditional second or third degree, will cause him to jump up onto a soapbox.
It's also annoying to him when people don't laugh at his dry or stupid sense of humor, but that's HIS problem! ;-)
He is a musician, a homebrewer/meadmaker, and a bass fishing addict... all of which he incorporates the Craft into at times. Other hobbies include writing rituals with his wife, Aurora, photography and webmastering the mdpagans.com web page.
Any questions? You can write to Aldwyn directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aldwyn's Suggested Reading List:
- "Illusions" by Richard Bach (A MUST READ!)
- "The Sea Priestess" and "Moon Magic" by Dion Fortune (Aldwyn recommends that you read Sea Priestess BEFORE Moon Magick despite the fact that Sea Priestess can be boring at times!).
The above three books are fiction, but in Aldwyn's opinion, each alone is better then any book specifically on Wicca!
Books on Wicca:
- "To Ride a Silver Broomstick" by Silver Ravenwolf (though it's really new age witchcraft and not Wicca)
- "Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner" by Scott Cunningham