Teachers and the Craft

Nice, friendly Pagan WLTM worldly-wise and sage teacher/guru for long
nature walks and studying the stars. Very important said teacher doesn’t want to
hack me to pieces or use me in anyway. If you know lots about plants and
astrology etc please contact me.
Well there we have it folks the type of post that gets strewn along fora for as far as the eye can see. I don’t think teachers are morally wrong, far from it, I plan to be one eventually. What I’m refering to in this blog entry is the aspiring Craft student’s unyeilding trust in the morality of random strangers. There’s an old saying: “When the Chela is ready the Guru will appear”, this means that when a student is ready to learn the teacher will appear. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is recognise our own limitations. Cultivating patience isn’t just about finding a teacher, we have tonnes of those by the time we realise that Paganism or the Craft is for us. Patience is skill that features hugely in any spirituality…ask around.
One of the things about teachers for me has been that since the Craft started, and indeed other spiritual practices I’ve adopted along the way, I’ve learned a lot about how I want to conduct myself from the way those I placed on pedestals conducted themselves. And not all of it good. Most Coven leaders and witchcraft teachers will avouch for me that by the time they felt ready to conduct ceremonies and offer training they had almost completely decided not to emulate a lot of mannerisms that they’d once found so charming in their gurus.
One of the hardest things for me growing up was the startingly recognition that sometimes my teachers and elders didn’t have the answers. In retrospect this is also due to the fact that no question was posed because as a student of Life that is what I sought and continue to seek. I was very badly bullied in primary school (elementary for my beloved Yank friends) it continued despite heavy involvement from my school and parents. At the time it seemed endless but as a by-product I became close to some of my teachers and actually learned they were human beings and not always the calm and well-adjusted people before me.
I don’t think it changes for teachers in a spiritual tradition. They still have to get up in the morning and start the day. Asking your “teacher” about what their day has been might be inappropriate in the middle of class but try it out and see. You may be surprised to learn what they did. It’s not always the long winded ceremonies that dominate their thoughts and you might feel less guilty for having other things on your mind as well.
In an age where media-based technology abounds teachers come in all shapes and sizes to. Most of what I’ve learned comes from listening to other students. It’s also alright to say that we don’t know everything and sometimes a teacher isn’t whats needed nor is a Coven but a decently structured study group could happen? Heck why not?

2 Replies to “Teachers and the Craft”

  1. I think one could learn a great deal from a study group. I like the idea of sharing information rather than sifting through hierarchical dogma and mores. Sometimes I get a little tired of ego-battles when I'm just trying to learn something. I become too timid to ask questions when I'm afraid of being shot down or ridiculed.

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