There is much to be said for almost any religion, as it seeks to guide and direct the morality of a people. Without morality, there is no society, and one of the basic laws of nature is that when there is no society, there is no survival. One definitely misunderstood religion to which I have been drawn in the past was Wicca. Although there is much silliness and drama within the stereotypical Wiccan culture (much like the Mormon one) the root teachings of Wicca deal with harmony and equity. Wicca teaches unity with the world, and to always be aware of how your actions affect others. Although Wicca is relatively unstructured, having no form of central government, the Wiccan Rede is a loose law that governs the actions of a faithful Wiccan. Although the rhyme may distract from the message, and there is much that involves the rituals and rhythms of Wicca, it ends with a clear summary: "An Ye Harm None, Do What Ye Will."
Wiccan tradition holds that for every action you do, it will be returned to you threefold. I was reminded of this tenet when reading Alma 41. In it, Alma is explaining the law of restoration to his son. Two parts in particular are echoed by the wiccan law. The first, in verse 7 states that we are our own judges. Many have interpreted this to mean that we will be the ones we answer to, at the judgment day, but I read it a little differently. I feel that we judge ourselves by our daily actions. If we choose laziness, we are judging ourselves lazy. If we choose sacrifice, we are judging ourselves disciples of Christ. I find it difficult to understand how a person could choose anything but goodness and light, but it is not simply saying "I desire good." It is actually DESIRING it, being drawn to it and molding oneself to it. It is requesting goodness of God, pleading with Him to guide your actions. Desire is not expressed by the tongue, or even the mind. It is expressed by action. That is why one cannot simply say "I am saved!" and have that be the end of it. A person commencing on the path of discipleship must demonstrate their saved state. That is where faith and works combine. Therefore, we judge ourselves by the actions we take, not by some arbitrary word.
The second point of interest is in verse 15. "For that which ye do send out shall return unto you again, and be restored. . . ." If you take away the numbers, this is the rule of three in Wiccan paradigm. It is also known as the golden rule in Christianity, and the parallels should be of no surprise, since similar Ethics of Reciprocity are found in most religions, though they may be emphasized differently. It is a basic tenet on which society must stand. When we forget, our society begins to decay. When we become so wrapped up in personal agendas, we no longer concern ourselves for others, we lose what holds us together. It brings a different perspective to topics such as legalized gay marriage and abortion. It may not change all actions, but it certainly brings compassion to our motivations and caution to our actions. Were it remembered, American politics would be far different.
Although I appreciate Wicca and once considered that spiritual route, I personally find that it leaves the story untold. It speaks of doing one's will, so long as it harms no one, but it does not urge strongly towards doing active good, and places far too much emphasis on one's self. I find that lack of harm is not enough. Additionally, much like the laws of nature, it holds no mercy for those who make mistakes. One must always pay for one's own mistakes. Having learned much about the power of bonds between people, I find the law of Intercession much more powerful and compelling. I find real strength in gratitude and in humility which is not found in Wicca. Also, underscoring Wicca is magick, which seeks to impose one's will on one's surroundings. I have found that submission of will to a perfect being is more rewarding than seeking to change the world to fit my view of it. I could not accept Wicca because it teaches no reliance on a Savior, and I have learned for myself that Christ is truly the Great and Last Sacrifice, in which all power and all life lie. In His service, I am blessed far more than I could ever be otherwise. Merry part and blessed be.