Welcome to another edition of Spotlight Interviews. Today we are talking to Lady Anna, who has served the tradition through varies causes and efforts, currently as a member of the Council of Elders and Head of Sedna Temple in the United Kingdom, as well as Witan Herald for the Tradition as well as Head of School for Witchschool UK and Europe
Thank you for participating in the Spotlight Interview. My readers and I are looking forward to this interview. How did you find your way to the Correllian Tradition?
I was surfing the internet in 1999 and found the ‘Daily Spell, joined the mailing list for the First Degree lessons and it all went from there. I had a grounding of metaphysics taught to me by my father over the years from when I was about eleven years old. A lot of what he told me was re-iterated in the first degree lessons so it was as so many say ’coming home’ when I found the Correllian Tradition.
In such a diverse faith group as we are, how can we – in your opinion – find common ground?
By persuading all those of diverse paths to realize that no one way is better than any other, all paths lead to Deity and each person need to do it the way which works best for them and to respect each other’s beliefs as we do basically believe in the same thing
Speaking off diversity, it seems that there is a perception at times that the Pagan community is not as diverse in color. Do you think that is a myth or reality? And how can we as a community foster a more welcoming environment for our members whom are not of European Ancestry?
I really don’t know why there is that perception. I think it’s a myth because there is an underlying thread of similarity of belief in all pagan paths. As a community we should be more open to the various similarities and build on those rather than dwelling on those things that are perceived to be so different. The Correllian Tradition welcomes all, there are a lot of members of non-European Ancestry, for example we have many members who have Native American ancestry amongst many other ancestries from other parts of the world.
In a general sense we have a lot in common with those who practice so called New Age thought. What is your thought on that?
I would say that those who practice new age thought have more in common with the Correllian Tradition. The Correllian Tradition has been in existence a lot longer and has a more grown up approach and deeper ways of worshiping deity. Also new age thought seems to be in its infancy with a more of the fluffy bunny way of doing things.
There are some in the Pagan community whom do not see the need for a clergy structure. What would you like to share about your thought on being a part of a very structural tradition, that could show the benefits of such structure?
For any religion to succeed and have staying power it must have some sort of structure. There is more likelihood of a religion succeeding and gaining outside support when they are structured and have the support network such as we have backing the membership.
Within the wider religious community, how can we as Pagans and Wiccans find (in your opinion) a higher recognition as a valid religion?
Yes I have seen and heard a lot of detrimental comments about the Correllian Tradition within the pagan community itself. This aggravates the problem within the wider religious community. A lot of the new age thought is usually quoted in discussions and articles in the wider religious community and some of the new age thought isn’t always the same as the Correllian thought but is said to be by outsiders what we believe.
I have frequently been told by Christians what I believe in and they go on to quote a lot of new age thought only because that is what they have heard said from New Age discussions or articles and is quite different to actuality and how Correllians think.
We need for it to be known properly and widely what we are about and that we are serious in our beliefs. The Wiccan community as a whole needs to gather together to solve the problem of being recognized rather than arguing that one tradition of Wicca is better or the right one rather than another.
We can only continue to be seen and to show that we are serious in our commitment as Correllians and not be drawn into unnecessary arguments which only fuel the idea that Wicca isn’t valid. We must calmly explain or describe what we are about to all other religions, rather than allowing our emotions to rule our discussions.
I thank you so much for taking your time to answer these questions. It was a pleasure to work with you on this project.
The next Spotlight Interview will be posted on April, 15th.
Asking questions is a good thing. Every teacher and leader, clergy and priestess should encourage questions.
But why are we asking questions? Are we asking them for pure collection of information – which is the commendable reason for asking – or are we asking because we want validation?
As a person in the position of teaching and leading, in whichever form that is, it is important to realize that some people only ask to receive validation of what they already believe. Those people tend to show the following behavior:
1. Interruption – frequent interruption of the flow of an answer usual means that there is no willingness to actually hear the answer given. This is a good time to bring the behavior to the attention of the questioner, and then re-give the opportunity for her/him to re-state the question. If that direction does not stop the behavior, end the conversation.
2. Negative reaction, such as anger, or raising of their voice – many people react negatively when their long set believe system is questioned. It is best to leave those people with a short set of information and then disengage, to give them time to allow a percolation of the given information, at which time they should be able to come back for an additional conversation on the subject. This process might take time, but it allows for a more meaningful growth.
As spiritual leaders we also need to keep in mind that a question asked by a student or peer might hold a lesson within for ourselves, that challenges our own view point. It is important to acknowledge that, and change the direction of our answers and teachings if that does occur.
In a spiritual journey that is not based on a single text, such as it is for many, if not most Pagan paths, change in ones viewpoint is inevitable, to at least some extend. Teaching this open mindedness to our students is essential from the beginning.