programs are decidedly not easy. There are several routes a potential student might
take: First, Second or Third Degrees. NorthWind also conveys the
status of Dedicant to the Grove to individuals who, for whatever reason, do not wish
to undertake the rigorous study program for a degree. Those seeking Dedicant status
need to complete a short reading program designed to help them understand and participate
effectively in the seasonal and lunar rituals and other activities.
We have no time limits or minimums for the study for any degree. However, most beginning students will need six months at least to complete the First Degree material. Recognition of work and study already accomplished is given and counts towards completion of the requirements. While theoretically one might complete the Second Degree requirements in a similar time, the overwhelming chances are that it will take around two years to become fully qualified. Our commitment to scholarship is not fulfilled with the attainment of Second Degree, all members of NorthWind are expected and required to continue studying the Craft and any and all other helpful disciplines.
Anyone studying with NorthWind in Degree study is asked to work with American Indian elements even if at this time he or she does not feel particularly drawn to it. It has been our experience that this strand of our weaving contributes greatly to our goal of high-energy ritual work. If, after taking First Degree, a student still doesn't find it congenial, he or she is at liberty to more or less drop it from workings.
Dedicant to the Grove is a course of study intended to familiarize the individual with the basic ideas of Wicca and to the rituals and symbolism used. It usually takes 3-5 months to complete the classes to complete.
The First Degree studies include both class work and independent study. Classes are taught throughout the year, and new classes begin as interest warrants. At least one NorthWind initiate works with each First Degree student. The First Degree program consists of a series of 20-26 classes, many with written assignments and suggested readings. While our teachers have a list of classes, they are free to add classes in subjects as they wish, or if there is enough interest among students. The tradition seeks to provide help to its teachers and leaders while at the same time insuring that certain agreed-upon standards are maintained in order that all NorthWind initiates exhibit a high quality of training and understanding. For those unable to attend classes, correspondence courses are also available.
Our Second Degree program is a very difficult and intensive program, with candidates needing two or more years to complete all of the requirements. This is our "priest/ess making" degree and our initiates have met extremely high standards in preparing themselves to take on the duties and responsibilities of leadership. Second Degree studies are almost entirely independent study following an extensive guideline as to topics and areas for concentration: ritual techniques, group dynamics, counseling, skills, teaching skills and background information on appropriate subjects. A Mentor and four Supervisors aid each Second Degree student.
Third Degree may be taken by any Second Degree who has been called [drafted] by one of the three Powers to devote the principle portion of their efforts to the Craft. NorthWind considers the Third Degree initiation the occasion of the full dedication of the individual High Priest/ess to one of the three Powers. There is no study program nor specific standards set forth on paper. The Blue Council and the individual wishing to assume Third Degree consult on the desirability of such an initiation.
Degree: Ritually conveyed recognition of accomplishment within the Craft and way of expressing indescribable experiences in personal growth. A mark of learning.
This information is copyrighted by NorthWind; Grey Cat, High Priestess.