Wicca, the Apocalypse, and the Future of the Natural World


  • Shawn Arthur Appalachian State University




Wicca, apocalyptic millenarianism, Gaia, nature religions


The nature-oriented religion Wicca is not normally associated with beliefs about the immanent destruction of the world; however, this ideology is important for many adherents of this tradition. 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.

Author Biography

Shawn Arthur, Appalachian State University

Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy and Religion. My focus is on Daoism, Chinese Medicine, and contemporary nature-oriented religions.


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How to Cite

Arthur, S. (2009). Wicca, the Apocalypse, and the Future of the Natural World . Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, 2(2), 199–217. https://doi.org/10.1558/jsrnc.v2i2.199