And I agree, we are, each of us, more than a single label.
However, I would like to propose that words and labels hold a power uniquely their own, which is why there are so many words ... even
And yes, I do understand the argument that words held 'more' meaning in the past and that our current society is doing its best to completely pollute words; not only by bastardizing the original meaning but to also include a complete shift from the original definition, so that it can be very difficult to determine what is actually being stated and what it is the label is identifying. But, frankly, I don't believe that we should allow this to stop us from adopting a word or label that we feel accurately describes u s or 'fits' us, if we discover one. I propose that words and labels are only limiting if we allow them to be and that, in fact, when we do adopt a label, we now tap into all the power that the specific word holds which can be influential if we allow to be so. This is why, I believe, that many pagans shun a label but the experience doesn't have to be a hindrance. It can be beneficial to us as well as our magickal practice.
We, as witches, are aware that everything existing on this physical plane once began on the astral as a mere thought. That thought (Air) was manipulated by our Will (Fire) and emotions (Water) and is then manifested (Earth) on the physical by our words (and in some cases actions). Since words are a physical manifestation of a vibration that already exists on the astral it resonates with that particular energy and when we align ourselves with that vibration, we are able to harness that power within our magickal practice. This is the idea behind correspondences.
Within the Laws of Magick proposed by Isaac Bonewits and widely accepted by numerous occult traditions gives us The Law of Correspondence or The Law of Association, which states that: Things look like what they are or "as above, so below". This means that if one energetic pattern has elements in common with another then they can, through these common elements affect one another. The two patterns correspond and can be used to strengthen the alignment of your intention with its goal within your spell craft. But the application of this doesn't stop with our spell crafting. We can expand on this idea when discussing our words or labels that we decide (or not to decide) to identify with.
When I identify with the word "witch" I am using a word that already existed and has been used for many years prior to my birth in 1969. It was used to identify those who self proclaimed themselves as a witch, as well as, those who were accused of being a witch. I think we can agree that the word holds both nurturing and destructive intentions. So when I, use this word to identify myself, according to The Law of Correspondence, I am corresponding or aligning myself with all previous individuals that have also identified or been identified with the same word and in doing so, gives me access to the energetic vibration of all those individuals. This is a powerful alignment, wouldn't you agree? It is the same concept illustrated when using our magickal tools (athame, wand, chalice, pentacle).
Words hold power, there is no doubt, but when using words to identify or label oneself, it isn't always a limiting or "bad" thing.