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Posted: Nov. 17, 2002
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Why Are You A Pagan or Heathen?
Why are you a Pagan or Heathen? What first attracted you to the Pagan/Heathen religion or path? How or where did you find out about Paganism?
How long have you considered yourself to be a Pagan/Heathen?
What is the most satisfying or meaningful aspect of the Pagan/Heathen religion, path or lifestyle for you?
| Reponses: There are 142 responses posted to this question.
|| Reverse Sort
| I Think I Came That Way ||Mar 3rd. at 1:44:32 pm EST|
|Eclipse (Virginia) ||Age: 25 - Email |
I was lucky enough to be born into a pretty laid-back Protestant family. I went to Sunday school and played Mary in the Xmas pagent, but was never particularly devout, mainly because a lot of the religious teachings made no sense to me. My parents, directly and indirectly, imparted some important bits of spiritual advice to me as a child. 1. What you believe in is not nearly as important as how you live. 2. Reason is far superior to blind faith; God gave you a brain--use it! I always had an interest in comparative religions, and, while in elementary school, started researching the historical side of Witchcraft. I didn't start learning about Wicca as a modern religion until high school. My parents gave me my first book on the subject as a Christmas gift (how's that for irony?) . Once I started reading about it, I discovered that I had been doing some of it since I was a little kid, without ever knowing what it was: raising energy, protective circles, visualization, scrying--I used to see some freaky things in the patterned ceiling tiles above my bed. It just sort of went from there because it felt so natural. I'm pretty much in the closet, but, strangely enough, sometimes when the subject of religion comes up among accquaintances or co-workers, someone will look at me and say, with all seriousness, "I think you should be a Witch." I don't know why. I dont' talk about it and I look pretty conservative. My closer friends who do know sometimes joke that I should just have "Yes, I am a Witch" tattooed across my forehead.
| To Be Or Not To Be, Good Question ||Mar 3rd. at 12:19:51 pm EST|
|RafenCat (Parsonsfield, Maine) ||Age: 33 - Email |
I choose to be a Pagan for several reasons. While Christianity has it's good and bad points it is constrictive in several ways. Put simply, I've always had a problem with the Catholic wedding vows where the bride gives up life and limb and the groom simply says, "I do" since he's got the better end of the deal anyway. And the all or nothing ideals. Take one step in the Pagan direction and you are a sinner for life, but come back and "repent" and all is forgiven. ON the other hand Paganism has such a grounding effect on the lives it touches. We are who we are and it doesn't matter where you came from or what you've been through, it's that aspect that makes us stronger. Nature brings us to the beginning of all things and with the seasonal changes we evolve with each change. We are one with the Goddess, we are one with the Earth. And being a parent, with the first breath of life nature is in control and our job is to nurture. I kind of compare it to hearing that you are pregnant for the first time. You don't know wether to laugh, cry or scream but the end result is the same, you smile, you worry, you eventually have the utmost responsibility. Becoming a Pagan was a decition I made before I had a child and it made the transition to parent easy. I love transforming season to season and seeing it all through the eyes of a child is like being reborn again into wonder. And all that we lose when we grow up is again revealed as new, and magical. So naturally I wouldn't have it any other way. To be one with nature, one with learning things for the first time all over again and blessed in so many ways by the Goddess. Teach a child to love nature and they carry it for life, teach a child through the eyes of a child and a parent is reborn as well!
| Paganism Is Like A Custom Fit Suit... ||Mar 3rd. at 11:24:37 am EST|
|Melanie (Miesau Army Depo, Germany) ||Age: 29 - Email |
Why am I a Pagan...because it fits me. Christianity was like a too tight article of clothing...and now I feel like I'm wearing a suit that was made just for me. All the comfort and flexability I always wanted, but could never find. I have always been attracted to Paganism, I just didn't know what to call it growing up. But I was always at the local libary looking up Herbalism and Myths and stories of other countries and cultures. When I left home and joined the Army, a friend of mind opened my eyes and helped me on to the path. I came out of the "broom closet" a few years ago, and while some people did judge me for being pagan my husband and friends accept me for who I am. I would say that the most satisfying aspect is knowing that I am who I am meant to be and not trying to fit someone elses idea of what I should be. It all comes down to being yourself and being happy with that person.
| Beginning The Path... ||Mar 3rd. at 11:24:11 am EST|
|Stasia (VA) ||Age: 26 - Email |
I have only recently proclaimed that I am a student of Wicca. Through adolescence I was extremely fascinated with the occult, but had to leave that behind due to the obsession getting out of hand. For the past several years I have professed being agnostic, not knowing what to believe in. I think I found Wicca one day on the Internet while looking up other religions, and it just clicked. I'm most at peace outside in nature, I'm most happy when doing things for others that helps them grow, and I'm always looking to expand my consciousness and sense of self. The most satisfying part for me is the accountability I'm no aware of. I didn't really consider the affect I had on the environment before I began reading about Wicca.
| Why I'm A Pagan ||Mar 3rd. at 10:26:17 am EST|
|angela capoccia (huntington bch, ca) ||Age: 16 - Email |
i have been so tired of not being able to do anything in my familys religon. my brother was so much more important then me , even though i was older. everything that happens wrong was 'gods will' and i was tired of it. i looked and found a religon that worked for me, but now i have the unwanted problem of discrimination from teachers who ask for your religon, then discriminate.
| Born Pagan ||Mar 3rd. at 3:27:27 am EST|
|Kit Nothing (Dallas, Texas) ||Age: 20 - Email |
My mother raised me to believe in God. She never put a face or a gender on God. My family has never been Christian and this tradition goes back many generations. My family and I believe that there is only one God, but that It has many "faces". Some times God is seen as a woman or maybe a satyr. I believe that we see God the way we want to see God. My mother taught me just about everything I know about herbs and healing but denies that she is a witch herself. The word "witch" can still prevoke negative thoughts in a lot of people, I guess. I came out of the broom closet when I was 13 and I have been learning ever since and I never want to stop! I will teach my children what I was taught about God, but I will never push my religion on them. Finding your "God" is a personal road we all must take and it's only one lane.
| Solitary, Eclectic, Pagan, Free Thinker ||Mar 3rd. at 1:20:42 am EST|
|Chris (Henderson, ky) ||Age: 31 - Email |
I Ask too many questions. I beleive what I believe. I bow b-4 no god, goddess.
I believe that there is a higher power. But I believe that we are all a part of it.
So why should the cell in your toe worship the cells in your head? How long have I
actively practicing for about 5 yrs. I have found peace & have become a better man.
Link to More info related to this post -- HERE
| Definately Pagan ||Mar 3rd. at 12:33:00 am EST|
|Steph (Midwest City OK) ||Age: 31 - Email |
I am NeoPagan. I tried Heathenry on for size for a while, but it didn't fit. So I went back to being Pagan, but I am strongly influenced by the things that I learned on that side of the fence.
My initial attraction to this was my own paranormal experiences. I wanted a place where that was okay, and that did not define me as evil. I was disappointed that there were not more people like me (which is very specific and not to be spoken of here) but I loved other aspects of Paganism so much, that it did not matter as much as a positive self image, a personal, reciprocal relationship with divinity and ancestors, and (drum roll please) access to juicy, forbidden knowledge.
People it seemed knew what I was before I did. Of course I was stranger than a two tailed cat as a kid, so perhaps it was less sure than it sounded and just people being judgemental, not knowing I would take words like "Witch, " and "occult" to heart. I have been active in this community for 10 years. So I am no newbie, but I am not really an elder either.
The most satisfying aspect of this for me is my acceptance of myself. Before I was rejected for my unmentioned strangeness. I was labled unpleasant things for a variety of reasons, and after a while, I began to believe it. Its a common enough phenomena. I was able to cast off the fears of others, and take up my own identity through Paganism. I was able to discover, acknowledge, and nurture (for the first time) the sacred parts of myself, and through that, I could discern divine powers at work in the world. I could see this existance as joyous and purposeful rather than demeaning or worthless. My renewal made the world new again too.
| Why I Am Me ||Mar 2nd. at 11:53:20 pm EST|
|Erinna Fairchild (Killeen Texas) ||Age: 28 - Email |
The question, " Why are you Pagan" is an easy one to answer, because it's who I am. It's the only thing in this life that makes sense to me. It explains all and is all. It's the sky above, the ground below and everything in-between. My question to others would be " Why are you not?"
| Why I Am A Heathen ||Mar 2nd. at 9:15:06 pm EST|
|Walks the Hidden Path (Biddeford, ME) ||Age: 26 - Email |
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, ... Oh wait, wrong movie. Uh, I have always been someone who did not believe in the teachings of the Catholic church. There seemed to be far too much hypocrisy in their teachings, though I did not know the word at the time.
Then, I began to have visions of things in the past, future and possible futures that did not fit into my world view in the power of the Christian God. My path took a different turn when I first heard a Native American drum song. From then on, I sought a closer connection to the primal energies of nature and my link within it.
Now I am a practising Shamaness, have been learning from a local coven and been teaching others how to take meditative journeys beyond the veil.
| Christian Reject ||Mar 2nd. at 8:38:34 pm EST|
|Ayianna (Irving, Texas) ||Age: 18 - Email - Web|
I was raised by two Baptist parents, neither of whom were very Christian. The people at the churches weren't very Christian either. At 6 I was sent to some kind of kids convention to learn about God and be converted. No one mentioned the fact that children, according to the Christian beliefs, are blameless and are already forgiven until they are 8. I grew up like that, being taught false things and finding them out. I continued, until I realised that the Christian religion, while containing some truth, was a construction of men. So I kept learning about many things. I was pulled into someone else's dreams by a vampiric friend of mine, dreamwalking as I did when I was younger and not taught that is something that is 'not possible'. I didn't think myself a witch then, when I began charging a shell bracelet and metal jewelry, but looking back, that's what it was. That was nearly 7 years ago. I began then to reflect on things, seeing wisps in the dark coming into my window, ghosts moving through the house, things I hadn't yet touched falling on the floor, and joining my brother or sister for dreams. I suppose I used to be a center for activity in that house. I was a witch all along.
The part about being who and what I am that is most satisfying is that I never stop questioning what is out there, always searching for fiction to kill and truth to be found. My biggest achievement recently was realising that all religions worship the same God.
Merry part and Blessed be!
| Pagan...most Definitely ||Mar 2nd. at 7:55:27 pm EST|
|Rowan (Newport News, VA) ||Age: 31 - Email |
I was raised by a non-practicing Catholic mother. I think she was disillusioned and a little disgusted by the Catholic church. She was also open-minded, compassionate and free-thinking, and this is how she raised me and my siblings. While we were sent to church camp, it was done more so as a way to keep us busy in the summer than it was to teach us the bible. I tried to pay attention in bible study those summers, but it never really clicked. Years later as a teen, I found a book about wicca/witchcraft, read it and bells began to go off in my head. While I didn't start on my path to the Goddess then, it planted the seed. It was always in the back of my mind, and when I finally freed myself from the 10 year relationship with a catholic man who scoffed and silently scorned my pagan beliefs, I began to actively study and pray, and practice. The Goddess had been waiting patiently all those years, I believe, until I was ready to take the step and open myself to a spiritual connection with Her. Since then, my life has been greatly enriched and I learn and discover more about Her and myself every day. I was born a pagan, it just took me a while to realize it.
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