Wicca, the Apocalypse, and the Future of the Natural World
Keywords:Wicca, apocalyptic millenarianism, Gaia, nature religions
AbstractThe nature-oriented religion Wicca is not normally associated with beliefs about the immanent destruction of the world; however, this ideology is important for many Wiccans. This essay explores the manner by which apocalyptic millenarian beliefs are developed and propagated among Wiccans – as a predominantly oral tradition directly related to their worldview and its inherent focus on the sacredness of the Earth. Additionally, I investigate Wiccan perspectives on the future of the natural world, and their various solutions to perceived environmental problems, in a way that reflects upon the relevance of this study for better understanding both the Wiccan religion and apocalyptic millenarian beliefs. Furthermore, in comparison to trends in other millenarian studies, I discuss the unique reactions that are elicited when proposed apocalyptic changes are delayed and Wiccan environmentalist ideals do not come to fruition.
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