who are the new ‘Sabrinas’ and what do they believe in?

That image of centenarian women, who flew on their brooms and looked terrifying, is in the past. Today, who occupy space in the mystical horde are the new “Sabrinas”, the witches of the 21st century, much more modern, but with still traditional purposes.

“Currently, we call ‘witch’ or ‘witch’ all individuals who do not profess an official or institutionalized religion, but who practice some type of magic, inspired by paganism or neopaganism”, explains holistic therapist and astrologer Virginia Gaia.

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According to mysticism, the history of witchcraft is also that of magic: both talk about how we come to interpret nature symbolically, through rituals and the cult of images, which promote relationships with the divine.

“In contemporary times, we are very different from the witches of the past, as the internet and technology have facilitated access to information. This also ends up removing some of the stigma and violence suffered by witches in the past”, says Virginia.

However, the purpose of these “Sabrinas” has not changed that much. According to the specialist, practices and precepts remain very similar, with a little help from new technologies, which facilitate access to research sources and make knowledge more democratic.

the witches’ past

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Scene from the 1996 movie ‘The Salem Witches’

Image: Reproduction

The cult of the feminine has its roots in ancestry, in a period before even monotheistic religions and their mostly male cults.

Virginia Gaia remembers that there have always been women who practice magic. However, the female sex involved in sorcery was definitely not seen with good eyes.

“There have already been periods in history in which this persecution was institutionalized. It is more or less a pattern with stigmatization, satanization and prejudice against the magical practices and the gods of the dominated people”, argues the scholar.

In the Middle Ages, there was persecution of any belief outside the domains of the Catholic Church. “Later, with the religious movements of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation, the Protestants also began to be persecuted along with the pagan devotees”, quotes the astrologer.

One of the most well-known cases of intolerance is that of the Salem Witches. At the end of the 17th century, in the city of Salem, in the United States, people of different profiles were convicted on charges of witchcraft. Most were women.

Is everyone a witch?

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Image: Reproduction

Like Hermione Granger, Sabrina Spellman and other inspiring witches of fiction, astrologer Virginia Gaia assures us that we are all witches and wizards in potential.

“It is enough to seek information, study and practice in an informed way, either individually or in a group”, he says.

There are several covens – groups of magic practice – and initiatory orders that promote open events and lectures on the subject.

In addition to the interest in contemporary witches and their magic, it is worth understanding the aspects followed by them. This is because there is a diversity in the segments, and each one has its particularities behind witchcraft.

According to Virginia, there are some major strands: Hermeticism or Occultism (with or without group practices), Wicca, Traditional Witchcraft and Chaos Magic.

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