Witches Virtues: Strength
By Pax / Geoffrey Stewart
“Therefore let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion, honor and humility, and mirth and reverence within you.”
From The Charge of the Goddess by Doreen Valiente
Here in one simple sentence, there are eight simple words, eight virtues, and a wealth of meanings and possibilities and inspirations in a passage from the Charge of the Goddess, where She to tell us how to carry ourselves and what we should aspire towards. Today I am taking a closer look at Strength.
Let’s look at some of the definitions from our trusty dictionary…
1. The state, property, or quality of being strong. 2. The power to resist attack; impregnability. 3. The power to resist strain or stress; durability. 4. The ability to maintain a moral or intelectual position firmly. 5. Capacity or potential for effective action. …
7A. A source of power or force. B. One regarded as the embodiment of protective or supportive power; a support or mainstay. C. An attribute or quality or particular worth or utility; an asset.
8. Degree of intensity, force, effectiveness, or potency, as; A. Degree of concentration, distillation, or saturation; potency. B. Operative effectiveness or power. C. Intesity, as of sound or light. D. Intensity or vehemance, as of emotion or language.
9. Effective or binding force, efficacy; the strength of an argument.
~from the American Heritage College Dictionary, 3rd ed.
…I’ve cut out a few definitions related to economics and military terminology and card games, while interesting they don’t seem to cut to the core of what the Virtue of Strength is about; either in general or for me personally.
For myself, I find the many possibilities of what the Goddess asks of me intriguing. Who is to say that She is narrowed down to one definition for Strength? Physical, Moral, Intensity, … my momentary favorite is the capacity for effective action.
It is interesting to me that in my own mind when I first contemplate Strength I am drawn to the idea of emotional or intellectual or moral strengh and not to the physical. In fact I know it was this inner strength that I sought when I first chose the Witch name Pax et Fort.
There was a time I was much less neglectful of my physicality, I was in volleyball and weight training classes in High School.
Physical strength and, by logical inference, health are important. We in the Pagan community can sometimes get so enraptured with the spiritual that we neglect the physical. This is something of a problem for those of us in the Pagan community. We all know folks who are all gung-ho about meditating and alternative healing and Reiki, but neglect to visit the doctor.
The more I think about it the more I know I need to work on my own physical Strength, and health.