There's a hundred books out there on Wicca, most of which are written by people with names like “Silver Darkside” and “Raven Gloomygirl.” But basically Wicca is the codified beliefs of modern practitioners of witchcraft as a religion.
In 1921 Margaret Murray was a famous anthropologist. Was her expertise in ancient Religions? Nope. Cults? Nope. Well what was she an expert in? Egypt. What does Egypt have to do with Wicca? Nothing at all. Absolutely nothing. See, Ms. Murray was an Egyptologist who decided she'd take a look into the European witch trials. However, instead of looking at the whole thing objectively, she decided she'd make excuses as to how the people being accused of witchcraft were actual witches. In order to do this she had to suspend disbelief (and logic) and forget the fact that the transcripts she was reading were taken during torture sessions in which the tortured would say whatever the torturer would tell them to say. So when the tortured would say "I flew around and had sex with the devil" Ms. Murray took that to mean "we danced all night and then I had sex with a man wearing a mask of a horned god." She wrote the whole thing up in a book called "The Witch Cult in Western Europe" Luckily nobody would be smart enough to buy this, right?
Even Scientologists Laugh at this Basis for a Religion
In 1954 Gerald Gardner writes "Witchcraft Today" in which he claims that the famous Cult of Margaret Murray's work not only was real as she claimed, but that it still existed in his times. And guess what? Gardner just happened to be a crucial figure in that new cult. He uses most of his book to spin together fragments from other peoples writing into what he claimed was the official religion. He also drew heavily upon his own 1949 novel "High Magic's Aid." See, so Scientology isn't the only religion based on a guy wanting his novel to become real.
I'd Trust Him to Make My Religion.
In the late 50's a Feminist named Doreen Valiente joined Gardner's cult. When we say "Feminist" what we mean is that she didn't like that women's roles in the cult were to basically stand there naked while men performed rituals around (and we bet sometimes on) them. When she discovered that Gardner had plagiarized the Satanist Aliester Crowley in many of his official Wicca beliefs," she blackmailed him into making the religion more women-friendly and to change the god they worshipped into a goddess.
This Offends Cracked Also.
In 1969 the Encyclopedia Brittanica finally gets around to changing the entry about witchcraft to no longer reflect the Murray-Gardner premise. It seems for forty years the entry repeated the Murray thesis in each edition. Oh, by the way, the author of that entry from 1929 was, well, Margaret Murray.
The Internet, in paper form.
In November of 1963 the T.V. Show "Bewitched" started production. In fact, the filming began the day President Kennedy was shot. "Bewitched" producer and director William Asher was the guy who produced President Kennedy's famous birthday party in which Marilyn Monroe sang "Happy Birthday" to President Kennedy. This coincidence remains the most convincing argument that Wicca is real to date. The way "Bewitched" would portray witches as an oppressed minority remains a basic tenant of any Wiccan today. Bewitched also majorly pisses off Wiccans.
That Cartoon Title Sequence Was the Funniest Part of the Show.
The famous "Rule of Three-fold" in which whatever harm you do will come back to you three fold (made famous by the movie "The Craft") has its "ancient origin's" in 1968. You see, this equivalent of virtually every other religions "golden rule" actually comes from an article in that trusty magazine "Beyond." A Gardner follower named "Raymond Buckland" wrote a 1968 article called "I Live with a Witch" in which it was first formulated. So for three-forths of Wiccas history this very key part didn't exist. This would be like the Ten commandments having been written in the year 1500. Or put in a term Cracked readers can understand, imagine if the "Prime Directive" hadn't been introduced to Star Trek till the Deep Space 9 series debuted.
Maybe They Will See Through My Ugly Exterior and Love Me?