Posts Tagged ‘witches’

Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.

Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg and owlet’s wing,
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble.
By the pricking of my thumbs,
Something wicked this way comes.
Open, locks,
Whoever knocks!

MacBeth, Act IV, Scene 1



From Bewitched to Charmed to Sabrina the Teenage Witch, we seem to love our witches.  The Bible addressed witches, one of Shakeseare’s most famous plays heavily involves witches (excerpted above), to say nothing of the recent offerings, from T’Witches to Daughters of the Moon, to the Harry Potter series.  Witches seem to be  part of our psyche.

Witches are seen to be powerful (Macbeth, Charmed).  Witches have been perceived as having the ability change the path of the future (Macbeth, Harry Potter).  Witches are portrayed as ugly hags, because the power that they are perceived as having is so powerful and potentially toxic.  It is human to want those who have (ab)used power to show signs of it, rather than being perceived as innocent.    We want to believe that we can whip up a quick little potion to solve all our problems, light a candle to make our reality change; anything that will absolve us of the onerous work of, well, working for what we want.  We want the fairy godmother, and the magic pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

I’m not saying that it’s not possible to change our lives.  I’ve completed no study of the efficacy of prayer, or the ability of people to believe what they will, regardless of what anyone elses’ opinion may happen to be.  People change everyday, from people who quit smoking, to people who wake up unhappy one day and decide, big or small, to change their lives.  I remain skeptical of claims that seem to good to be true.

People want to believe in something greater than themselves, believe that sometimes, we can be better or more than merely human. Witches allow us to play with that fantasy; what would happen if we could freeze time? What would we do if we had unlimited powers? Do we have the wisdom, and moral strength to ‘do what’s right’?  Or do we become victims of our own mortality and the truism ‘power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely.’