(This was initially posted on my Tumblr blog, and is being cross-posted here with some slight adjustments.)
So a while back I was rambling about magic-users and sensitives and whatnot. What I was going on about is that people who are sensitive to magic are people that occupy or work in the liminal spaces, the between places at the edges of normal reality and whatever is beyond.
We have a certain obligation in occupying these spaces. When people encounter them unprepared, we are able to help them make sense of it and integrate back to reality. Or, if they insist on pushing on, we teach them how to make sense of the place we are and how to function there.
But I didn’t have a word for the people in the Between Place.
“Witch,” “magician,” “sorcerer,” “wizard” all denote certain technical skill sets, and have certain cultural connotations to them that exclude others. “Magic-user” is awkward, and not all of the people I’m talking about actually use magic, even though they’re sensitive to its actions and can be aware of it. And not all magic-users are psychics or clairvoyants or mediums (Would it not be media? Meditate.) But I want to include them as well. And the spirit workers and reiki healers and all of those, too.
“Sensitives” is okay, I suppose, but has a newagey feel to it that connotes a bit too much flakiness for my taste.
And then I came across the term “Wix”
‘Wix’ is a gender neutral term for someone who practices magic, since the term ‘witch’ is more often than not seen as a feminine term. It’s very popular in the HP fandom, taking the word ‘mix’ but adding the ‘wi-‘ of ‘witch’ and ‘wizard’. I haven’t seen the term used much in the pagan/witchy community.
Of course, “witch” is gender neutral already, although a lot of people outside the pagan community (and some inside it, I suppose) don’t seem to be aware of that fact.
But “witch” connotes a specific approach, a certain craft or practice. What I like is that the term Wix approached the gist of “someone who knows about spooky stuff and can maybe play with it” without the specifics of practice, religion, approach, action, or perception. It is a truly neutral word (so far) that has the association of those who play in the Between Place, but isn’t particular as to how they do it.
So I get to a point.
I’d like to use the word “Wix” (plural Wixen) in the following way:
“A person who is sensitive to or aware of the existence and perception of things that are regarded as mystical, magical, spiritual, metaphysical, or beyond the realm of normal day-to-day perception and functioning”
But me using this word in the way is little more than mental masturbation unless it catches on.
So I ask you, my followers and fellow Wixen:
If you like this idea, actually use the word. Use it in your writing. Use it in tags. Reblog this post so others become aware of this.
And beg forgiveness of the Harry Potter fandom.
There have been some points brought up in discussion on Tumblr I thought worth mentioning.
The first and most important is the plural form, “wixen.” Concerns have been raised that it may be easily confused for the word “Wiccan.” This has led to the suggestion that both the singular and plural form be the same, “wix.” I can see the argument here, and frankly am open to accepting both as proper and favoring whichever one becomes more natural in actual usage. Some consideration must be given, however, to the fact that the word is being borrowed from the Harry Potter fandom, however, and their choice of the plural form should be respected, at least to some degree.
The second is somewhat relate, but a little more awkward. As it turns out, “wixen” is also German for a particular form of fetish involving men masturbating, often in lingerie. This is a problem because there is a strong potential to see things you may not want while searching the tags on various blogs or websites (especially Tumblr.) Many of these sites do have an adult filter on search results (should you decide to use it) so this problem can be mitigated to some degree, but it has been used as a string argument for “wix” being the plural form as well. (I wonder if the HP fandom has dealt with this problem?)