I wasn’t going to post on this whole Sephora thing because so many in the community had already done it so there was no need for me to waste my time and yours. I also like to use my blog to present informative information and not as a ranting soapbox. However, in this case I might do both. For an entire week I’ve seen different posts that agreed and disagreed with Sephora carrying Pinrose’s “Witch Kit” (Which has been now retracted in a note on their website). The fact of the matter is, who the hell cares! Well, half of the Witch community apparently did. What was more disappointing was the reactions from the Witch community. The one good thing is we got to see that we, as Witches can make changes without the use of magick. Sadly though, if Witches would put more of their energy and words into something more important than fighting over something so trivial.
It should be no secret that companies have been doing this for years. Small stores in the Pagan community have been doing this for years. I’m pretty sure the local village Witch did it centuries before. The biggest outcry was in regards to big companies profiting on Witchcraft. HELLO!! Take a moment and look at Salem, Massachusetts, the whole town thrives off of promoting Witchcraft and making a profit. But yet, I don’t see these self-appointed activists of Witchcraft boycotting a whole town. If you have been there you would know that If you walk into the Salem Witch Museum you will find a product that is a lot more serious than a deck of tarot cards, sage, and a crystal. They sell a prefabricated Witch bottle that includes instructions and a history. Now, the only difference I see in these two products is that the Pinrose “Witch Kit” contains items that better a person’s life without the knowledge of true magic or the need for ceremony to be able to reap the benefits. Putting aside the argument of cultural appropriation, at which I will discuss in a minute. Let’s take the whole sage thing, one of the other urgings is that someone would be using it improperly. Yes, I will agree that they wouldn’t be using it in the way that we would, by adding a ceremony or a magical component. But, let us not forget that on a scientific level, burning white sage produces negative ions which reduces the positive ions in the air. These positive ions can cause stress, depression and many other harmful things that we find in our environment. Hmm, not such a bad thing after all for anyone who chooses to use it with or without the “know how”. Now, let’s talk about cultural appropriation, which is a subject I’ve written an article on before (with regards to the use of the word totem). We could sit here and argue what cultural appropriation is all day. The fact of the matter is that it has happened for generations, even within the Native American community. White sage and its use in ceremony began with the southwest American tribes. However, its use can now be found in almost every tribe across the country. It then can be considered under the cultural appropriation clause of our modern times. The most common stand here is that because it is used by Native Americans, as a whole, it is not cultural appropriation. That conclusion is completely ignorant. Just because we are Native American that doesn’t mean we are all the same and follow the same ideals and beliefs. Every tribe has their own systems within their tribal culture. For instance, in my tribal teachings we use pine in the same way that the Southwest use sage. However, it is common to see sage being used outside of traditional ceremony. I’ve have also seen comments on the use of sacred medicine by non-natives. To this I just wanted to point out that the whole idea of sacred medicine is that it was given to humans to use to better the person, to better the tribe, to better Humanity. No one, not even Native Americans (unless told otherwise by spirit) has rights on what the creator has gifted us. If all these armchair objectors would look at their own practices they would realize that many of their own teachings have been culturally appropriated by people who they consider to be the founders of modern Witchcraft. Truth is we are all a victim of and guilty of cultural appropriation.
I could get into the inclusion of the tarot deck and rose quartz, but I would just be repeating myself and others. I can agree with the many, in that Witches could have been represented with more respect and not marketed the kit as a “Witch Kit, but that is all you will get from me. What boggles my mind about the whole thing is that one-minute Witches say the world would be a better place if people were enlightened to the ways of the Witch, then the next they’re boycotting a gateway for these people to find said enlightenment. Which is it? All this whole episode of silliness did was prove to me that all communities are the same no matter their creed. These days we all have a stick up our butts about something, difference is ours is a broomstick. I suggest that if you feel you have fought the fight against this “Witch Kit” and won, please just take a moment and look at your own practices and their origins, they just might surprise you.