Paganistan: Notes from the Secret Commonwealth

In Which One Midwest Man-in-Black Confers, Converses & Otherwise Hob-Nobs with his Fellow Hob-Men (& -Women) Concerning the Sundry Ways of the Famed but Ill-Starred Tribe of Witches.

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What Do You Say When a Witch Dies?

What do you say when a witch dies?

Well, witchhood is a kind of tribal affiliation.

Those who have no tribe often find it difficult to understand the depth of the sense of belonging that comes with tribal identity. Those that do, know that, naturally, when you die, you don't want to come back just anywhere; you want to come back to your people, to those that you love.

Uncle Gerald got it absolutely right when he says in Witchcraft Today (140) that our hope beyond death is for rebirth among our own.

Once a witch, always a witch, they say. Not even death takes that away.

So when a witch dies, you reaffirm that hope.

Reborn to the People, you say.


With thanks to AMF, TF, and MG


Last modified on
Poet, scholar and storyteller Steven Posch was raised in the hardwood forests of western Pennsylvania by white-tailed deer. (That's the story, anyway.) He emigrated to Paganistan in 1979 and by sheer dint of personality has become one of Lake Country's foremost men-in-black. He is current keeper of the Minnesota Ooser.


  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham Monday, 18 March 2019

    From what I've read in books on past life regression we do have a tendency to reincarnate in groups. Apparently a lot of Americans had past lives during the Albigensian crusade. So the bonds of kith and kin extend across time.

  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch Tuesday, 19 March 2019

    I'll note with amusement that in the WT passage cited above, the witches tell Gardner that to be reborn among one's own is a reward for good and faithful enactment of the rites--orthopraxy, right?--but that if you do wrong, your punishment is to be reborn among cowans.

    Gotta love that. :D

  • Helga Hedgewalker
    Helga Hedgewalker Monday, 25 March 2019

    I think it's true. I have many times in this life met people who became important future coven-mates and just KNEW they were important to me. You were one of them dearest Steve.

  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham Tuesday, 26 March 2019

    Well now it's odd. Today at work an idea popped into my head of a group of witches at a funeral all dressed up in black robes and pointy hats singing "We'll meet Again" as the coffin is lowered into the ground.

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