Essay On Witchcraft

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The practices of the occult are seen everyday by everyone around the globe. From the idea behind the hit book series, Harry Potter, to tarot card readings at carnivals, occultism has played a distinguished role in the way society is run today. According to Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia(2016), a general encyclopedia primarily used for research, the occult is the “belief in hidden or mysterious powers not explained by known scientific principles, and the attempt to bring these powers within human control through a set of techniques and methods” (as cited in “Occultism”, 2016). As people start to explore these hidden or mysterious powers, different practices such as witchcraft, alchemy, telepathy, astrology, and many more originate, attracting or repelling a wide variety of people around the world. One country who has experienced the development of many occult practices over centuries is England. Although many occult practices displayed their prominence in England over time, witchcraft played a big part in shaping the social, political, and intellectual life of England. The past practices of witchcraft has influenced England’s popular culture today as seen through the laws that have been passed, the resurgence of religion associated with witchcraft, and the appearance of witchcraft in entertainment modes like movies. Although it is unclear when witchcraft originally blossomed, witchcraft flourished at the beginning of the 15th century, with the publication of Reginald Scot’s , ‘The Discoverie of Witchcraft’, in 1584. Prior to the book being published, the image that witchcraft was a combination of maleficia and heresy, and if practiced resulted in serious consequences, was believed for over 200 years. Pope Eugenius IV in 1... ... middle of paper ... ... who believe in witchcraft. All in all, the practice of witchcraft in England has been prominent for over 5 centuries. The publications in literature and the point of views of prominent people such as the Pope and the King as well as the general public affects how society behaves which in turn provided the basis for the development of witchcraft over the centuries. Although the practice of witchcraft doesn’t frame how society behaves today as much as it did so back then, the influence of beliefs associated with witchcraft then has directly molded how we view witchcraft today. It has allowed people today to explore religions they find comfort in, create entertainment which is enjoyed around the world(such as the Harry Potter series and movies), and believe in anything they want to believe even if it isn’t backed up with hard evidence, such is the case of witchcraft.

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