Articles/Essays From Pagans
February 10th. 2017 ...
Understanding the Unseen
Kitchen Magic and Memories
January 10th. 2017 ...
The Gray of 'Tween
Becoming a Sacred Dancer
Little Dog, Big Love
December 9th. 2016 ...
A Child's First Yule
November 10th. 2016 ...
What Exactly Is Witchcraft?
A Witch in the Bible Belt: Questions are Opportunities
On Death and Passing: Compassion Burnout in Healers and Shamans
What I Get from Cooking (And How it’s Part of My Path)
October 10th. 2016 ...
Witchcraft from the Outside
September 11th. 2016 ...
How Did I Get Here? (My Pagan Journey)
Wild Mountain Woman: Landscape Goddess
September 3rd. 2016 ...
Rethinking Heaven: What Happens When We Die?
What is Happening in My Psychic Reading?
August 12th. 2016 ...
When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch
Hungarian Belief in Fairies
Designing a Pagan Last Will and Testament
July 13th. 2016 ...
What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses
Magic With A Flick of my Finger
An Open Mind and Heart
Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum
June 13th. 2016 ...
Pollyanna Propaganda: The Distressing Trend of Victim-Blaming in Spirituality
Living a Magickal Life with Fibromyalgia
My Father, My First God
Life is Awesome... and the Flu
May 15th. 2016 ...
Faery Guided Journey
How to Bond with the Elements through Magick
Magical Household Cleaning
Working with the Elements
April 2nd. 2016 ...
An Alternative Conception of Divine Reciprocity
Becoming Wiccan: What I Never Expected
The Fear of Witchcraft
Rebirth By Fire: A Love Letter to Mama Maui and Lady Pele
Magic in Sentences
Blowing Bubbles with the Goddess
The Evolution of Thought Forms
March 28th. 2016 ...
Revisiting The Spiral
Lateral Transcendence: Toward Greater Compassion
Spring Has Sprung!
January 22nd. 2016 ...
Coming Out of the Broom Closet
Energy and Karma
Community and Perception
December 20th. 2015 ...
Introduction to Tarot For the Novice
Magia y Wicca
October 24th. 2015 ...
Facing Your Demons: The Shadow Self
The Dream Eater--A Practical Use of Summoning Talismans
Native American Spirituality Myopia
A Dream Message
Feeling the Pulse of Autumn
October 16th. 2015 ...
Sacred Lands, Sacred Hearts
September 30th. 2015 ...
September 16th. 2015 ...
Vegan or Vegetarian? The Ethical Debate
Nature Worship: or Seeing the Trees for the Ents
August 6th. 2015 ...
Lost - A Pagan Parent's Tale
July 9th. 2015 ...
Love Spells: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly
The Magic of Weather
June 7th. 2015 ...
A Pagan Altar
A Minority of a Minority of a Minority
The Consort: Silent Partner or Hidden in Plain Sight?
Why I Bother With Ritual: Poetry and Eikonic Atheism
May 6th. 2015 ...
Gods, Myth, and Ritual in Naturalistic Paganism
I Claim Cronehood
13 Keys: The Crown of Kether
March 29th. 2015 ...
A Thread in the Tapestry of Witchcraft
March 28th. 2015 ...
On Wiccan Magick, Theurgy, Thaumaturgy and Setting Expectations
March 1st. 2015 ...
Choosing to Write a Shadow Book
Historiolae: The Spell Within the Story
February 1st. 2015 ...
Seeker Advice From a Coven Leader
The Three Centers of Paganism
Magick is No Illusion
The Ancient Use of God/Goddess Surnames
The Gods of My Heart
January 1st. 2015 ...
The Six Most Valuable Lessons I've Learned on My Path as a Witch
Manipulation of the Concept of Witchcraft
Publicly Other: Witchcraft in the Suburbs
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Is Our Society Spiritually Dead?
Article ID: 14415
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 2,153
Times Read: 3,469
RSS Views: 12,463
Author: James Bulls
Posted: April 3rd. 2011
Times Viewed: 3,469
I value perspective and look for insight wherever I can find it – among my sources of perspective and insight I count the skeptic community and those who either don’t accept my beliefs or who even actively work to discourage others from considering my beliefs as valid or acceptable.
In an effort to live by, follow, and apply the Hermetic Law of Polarity, I expand my borders and gain knowledge by exploring opposites; in this case, I benefit from the skeptic community because in response to their challenges and criticisms I gain the ability to see myself as others outside my religious circle see me and am forced to examine (as well as defend and justify) my own beliefs.
Recently while watching a clip of Richard Dawkin’s “Enemies of Reason”, I saw this clip that included an interview with the esteemed Satish Kumar, editor of Resurgence, who advocates for Earth-centric and environmentally sound policies, practices, and beliefs. My attention was caught by what Satish Kumar said to Richard Dawkins about “spirit:”
In other words, Kumar embraces animism – the belief that some or all things possess a portion of living spirit or an animating essence, which imparts innate qualities and attributes. His words were echoed thousands of years ago by Plato’s Forms or perfect Ideals. In Hermetic philosophy, it is held that THE ALL or “God” as you may call it cannot be created or destroyed, is equivalent to the “supreme power of the universe, ” and is totally immune to any efforts to change or alter its presence or nature. The Platonic Ideal is the “blueprint” or “original form” of a thing (tree, rock, etc.) , as it exists within the mind of THE ALL.
As I discussed in my book Hermetic Reiki, imagine for a moment all the different breeds and varieties of horses in existence today. Each one is different from the other and has been deliberately differentiated through breeding to form varieties certain traits and attributes. Now, suppose that when you look at a horse – any horse, it’s not important – you’re not really seeing a horse. What you see is something that resembles a horse. That is because, outside of human knowledge or mortal existence, there exists a perfect form, archetype, original pattern, or Perfect Ideal of a horse. This perfect form is the thought, concept, pattern, or ideal from which all other forms on earth that we call horses are made. This original or perfect form of the horse, which exists outside of man’s knowledge or comprehension, resides in the mind of THE ALL. The perfect ideal of the horse never changes and what we perceive in the finite world is only a shadow of the greater truth.
The reason I bring this up is because of both what I’ve heard in the skeptic community and within the religious community (especially with regard to what Kumar said in the interview above.) Many skeptics either refute the existence of reality beyond what can be perceived or refuse to believe in the supernatural because they don’t believe sufficient evidence exists to convince them otherwise. They believe that the world as we are able to perceive it does not include the spirit and that the world around us is in fact devoid of spirit (because “spirit” does not exist – it is not “real.”)
At the other end of the belief spectrum, Satish Kumar adheres to animism, Platonic forms, and teaches that each thing has its own “spirit” and that each spirit’s presence or activity is necessary in a system for proper function. He, too, addresses the absence of spirit but not to discredit the matter but to emphasize the necessity of its inclusion.
Clearly you can see from my position as a Reiki practitioner and believer in universal life energy that I, too, adhere to animism and believe that spirit is present in all things; however, this article isn’t about my beliefs but about the question stated as the heading of this article: do we live in a spiritually dead society? Do we live in the absence of spirit? In our daily life have we excluded the animating presence of the divine? To consider Kumar’s words on role a tree’s essence (the “tree-ness”) plays in a system, is there anything which we have excluded from our homes which would elevate the spirit present within them?
For example, my wife keeps a variety of houseplants – a large potted Newfoundland pine and a Mother-in-Law’s Tongue downstairs, and upstairs a tall jar of bamboo in water on the bookshelf and an admittedly small potted orange tree in the bedroom. Unlike my wife, I don’t have a green thumb… in fact, I have a black thumb: I’m notorious for failing to water potted plants. Despite my forgetfulness when it comes to watering plants in a timely manner, I often wonder to myself what they contribute to our home and what spirit or essence they promote. Indeed, as a writer I spend many hours seated in front of my computer seeing nothing except the computer screen in front of me. I have – either by accident or design – removed all “tree-ness” from my daily life. Even when I’m in the same room as the houseplants I often forget to acknowledge them – I forget that they’re there and frequently find myself wondering how much more room we could make in a small house by removing the large potted trees.
Do you find yourself in similar situations? Have you by accident or design removed all spirit from your life? Are you living in the absence of the divine, surrounded all day by only man-made technology and artificial structures? My question to myself is, “What can I do to reunite myself with the spirit in my daily activities?”
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
Author's Profile: To learn more about James Bulls - Click HERE
Other Articles: James Bulls has posted 7 additional articles- View them?
Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE
Email James Bulls... (Yes! I have opted to receive invites to Pagan events, groups, and commercial sales)
Web Site Content (including: text - graphics - html - look & feel)
Copyright 1997-2017 The Witches' Voice Inc. All rights reserved
Note: Authors & Artists retain the copyright for their work(s) on this website.
Unauthorized reproduction without prior permission is a violation of copyright laws.
Website structure, evolution and php coding by Fritz Jung on a Macintosh G5.
Any and all personal political opinions expressed in the public listing sections (including, but not restricted to, personals, events, groups, shops, Wrenâ€™s Nest, etc.) are solely those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinion of The Witchesâ€™ Voice, Inc. TWV is a nonprofit, nonpartisan educational organization.
Sponsorship: Visit the Witches' Voice Sponsor Page for info on how you
can help support this Community Resource. Donations ARE Tax Deductible.
The Witches' Voice carries a 501(c)(3) certificate and a Federal Tax ID.
Mail Us: The Witches' Voice Inc., P.O. Box 341018, Tampa, Florida 33694-1018 U.S.A.
of The World
NOTE: The essay on this page contains the writings and opinions of the listed author(s) and is not necessarily shared or endorsed by the Witches' Voice inc.
The Witches' Voice does not verify or attest to the historical accuracy contained in the content of this essay.
All WitchVox essays contain a valid email address, feel free to send your comments, thoughts or concerns directly to the listed author(s).