The Basics of Wiccan Beliefs
The Goddess and the Horned God
A Brief Overview of Wiccan Beliefs
Traditionally, the Wiccan belief system has been dualistic (meaning it revolves around two higher beings) and has focused on The Triple Goddess and The Horned God as equal, yet opposite, divine forces (much like Yin and Yang in Taoism). In some more modern forms of Wicca (including Dianic and Feminist Wicca) The Goddess is given prominence over The Horned God and conversely, in more traditional forms of witchcraft, The Horned God is given more attention.
The Triple Goddess
The Triple Goddess is one of the most well known of the Wicca deities and is often worshipped as three entities outlined below:
- The Maiden: Represents enchantment, inception, expansion, the promise of new beginnings, birth, youth and youthful enthusiasm, is characterized by the waxing moon.
- The Mother: Represents ripeness, fertility, sexuality, fulfillment, stability, power and life. She is characterized by the full moon.
- The Crone: Represents wisdom, repose, death, and endings, and is characterized by the waning moon.
The Symbol of the Triple Goddess
The symbol outlined below depicts The Maiden, The Mother, and The Crone in the Waxing, Full, and Waning Moon.
The Horned God
Quick Overview of the Horned God
In both the traditional and newer forms of Wicca, the Horned God is one of two deities, opposite the Triple Goddess (as mentioned above). Although he has many names (including “The Sun God, The Vegetation God, and the Sacrificed God), “The Horned God” is the most popular, as this is what those harboring Wiccan beliefs as early as the 1930’s worshipped him as.
Symbol of the Horned God, similar to that of the Goddess.
A depiction of the Celtic God Cernunnos, one of the many Horned Gods worshipped by the Wicca.
The Horned God and Misconception
Contrary to what many believe, the Horned God is not actually a representation of Satan (and those who are truly Wiccan are not “devil worshippers”). In fact, Wiccan beliefs do not even include the dualism of “good” and “evil” as other religions (especially Christianity) propose them.
The Horned God in New Wiccan Beliefs
With the aging of time and the introduction of newer Wiccan beliefs, The Horned God has begun to lose influence, as more emphasis is placed on The Goddess (especially in traditions influenced by feminist ideologies). However, His inclusion is crucial for the The Wheel of the Year, which relies equally on the Horned God and the Goddess to be complete, and which many Wiccans observe throughout the year.