How do I find a coven?

John_William_Waterhouse_-_Magic_CircleThere’s a lot out there on the internet about how to find a coven. Most of it seems to be quite US centric with the occasional UK resource thrown in. Here’s an Australian version and perhaps one that might be more suited to seekers on The Pagan Fringe of Sydney.  I’ve also used the word coven here, although it’s typically used to refer to a group of witches practising together. The group you’re looking for might not involve witches or witchcraft at all, however it might be anything from ceremonially focussed group doing magick, a general earth centred pagan group marking the seasons, or maybe a discussion group or a study group focussing on a particular topic or genre of research/writing. Not everyone needs a coven, however these are some good tips to start with if you’re considering group work of some kind.

  1. Do some research 
    • Have a rough idea of what you’re looking for, and your reasons why. At the very least have an idea of the style of paganism that you’d like to explore further. Then you can start to ask the right questions of who you’d like to meet. Asking everyone you meet that you want to meet ‘some witches’ is far too vague.
  2. Get out to face to face events
    • You may find a contact point for a coven or group online, however it’ll be in person where you’ll find valuable connections that you can deepen further if it feels right. Attend whatever local groups and meet ups that you can, even if they’re social meet ups. Especially if they are social meetings, you might score yourself an invite to something else if you get to know a few people.
    • Have a look here for more info on what to do if you’ve never attended a pagan event before. Here are some suggested events and ways to find them:
      • The Pagan Fringe  – we tend to attract people who don’t attend larger or more public events. We’ve met coven leaders, members, occultists, and seekers in the short time we’ve been hosting events since 2015.
      • Regular public full moon rituals in Seven Hills. There are regular announcements at these circles about other events coming up.
      • Join a Facebook page like Sydney Pagans  – it’s a well networked group, particularly in Western Sydney and you might find something relevant to you.
  3. Use your manners and think about your motives
    • Think of it like you’re applying for a job and there is a screening process before you even get to the interview stage. Be polite, demonstrate that you’ve thought about what kind of group you’d like to meet, and have a think about what value you can add. Be upfront and honest.
  4. Understand the time commitment
    • Have a think about how much time you can realistically commit to group or coven work and how that best fits in with the rest of your life. Being a member of a coven is starting a new relationship, with not one, but an entire group of people all at once. It will typically last years and will require regular attendance and contribution. Are you ready for it? Is there space in your life for this?  Conversely, taking on a new student is no small task for a coven or a teacher. It’s a massive time and energy investment, so it needs to appear worthwhile for everyone.
  5. Ask
    • I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard people say ‘when I’m ready, my teacher will appear’ No, no they won’t. Teachers do not go out of their way looking for new students. See my comment above about time and energy commitment. There may be a study group that will advertise their courses and you can join them, however that’s not a coven environment. A teacher (worth learning with) will not *ask* a student to become their student.

As always, keep an open mind and learn to recognise what’s a good and healthy environment or people to get involved with. The following resource is a helpful one when considering working with a new bunch of people.

Best of luck on your journey!

 

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