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Articles/Essays From Pagans

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February 1st. 2019 ...

Paganism and Witchcraft in the Media


September 25th. 2018 ...

Understanding the Unseen


August 25th. 2018 ...

A Little Magickal History

Men and the Goddess

Back to Basics Witchcraft: Magical Creativity for Small Living Spaces

Kitchen Magic and Memories

Why the Faeries?

Magic in Daily Life

An Open Fire: Healing from Within

Cernunnos: The Darkest Wood in the Moon's Light

Gudrun of the Victory Gods

Ares and Athena

La Santa Muerte... The Stigma and the Strength

The Lady on the Stairs

The Wheel of the Year in Our Daily Lives


July 26th. 2018 ...

The Importance of Unification: Bringing Together Community Members to Invoke Cohesivity


May 29th. 2018 ...

Wild Mountain Woman: Landscape Goddess


April 20th. 2018 ...

Nazis Made Us Change Our Name


January 25th. 2018 ...

Finding Balance: Discipline Wedded to Devotion


November 15th. 2017 ...

Witch?


September 30th. 2017 ...

Transitioning


July 31st. 2017 ...

Sin Eaters and Dream Walkers


July 2nd. 2017 ...

On Cursing: Politics and Ethos


June 1st. 2017 ...

Herbal Astrology

The Sacred Ego in Mediterranean Magical Traditions


April 30th. 2017 ...

Tarot Talk: the Knight of Pentacles


March 30th. 2017 ...

Tarot Talk: the Ace of Swords


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 its Part of My Path)


September 11th. 2016 ...

The Shadow of Disgust


August 12th. 2016 ...

When Reality Rattles your Idea of the Perfect Witch

Hungarian Belief in Fairies

Designing a Pagan Last Will and Testament

Past Midnight


July 13th. 2016 ...

What Every Pagan Should Know About Curses

Magic With A Flick of my Finger

Finding and Caring for Your Frame Drum

An Open Mind and Heart


June 13th. 2016 ...

Living a Magickal Life with Fibromyalgia

My Father, My First God

Life is Awesome... and the Flu


May 15th. 2016 ...

Faery Guided Journey

Working with the Elements


April 2nd. 2016 ...

The Fear of Witchcraft

Magic in Sentences


March 28th. 2016 ...

Revisiting The Spiral

Still Practicing


January 22nd. 2016 ...

Coming Out of the Broom Closet


December 20th. 2015 ...

Magia y Wicca


October 24th. 2015 ...

Feeling the Pulse of Autumn


October 16th. 2015 ...

Sacred Lands, Sacred Hearts


September 30th. 2015 ...

The Other-Side


September 16th. 2015 ...

Vegan or Vegetarian? The Ethical Debate


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


May 6th. 2015 ...

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


February 1st. 2015 ...

Seeker Advice From a Coven Leader


January 1st. 2015 ...

Manipulation of the Concept of Witchcraft

Broomstick to the Emerald City


October 20th. 2014 ...

Thoughts on Conjuring Spirits


October 5th. 2014 ...

The History of the Sacred Circle


September 28th. 2014 ...

Seeking Pagan Lands for Pagan Burials

Creating a Healing Temple


August 31st. 2014 ...

Coven vs. Solitary


August 24th. 2014 ...

The Pagan Cleric

A Gathering of Sorcerers (A Strange Tale)


August 17th. 2014 ...

To Know, to Will, to Dare...

On Grief: Beacons of Light in the Shadows


NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.












Article Specs

Article ID: 8747

VoxAcct: 243805

Section: words

Age Group: Adult

Days Up: 5,277

Times Read: 8,330

Realizing the Pagan Evolution

Author: Rev. Gina Pond [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: October 10th. 2004
Times Viewed: 8,330

."..[M]any of us "oldies" becom[e] quite dismissive of the younger, which is a shame as this new generation has much to contribute and should not be dismissed as "fluffy bunnies" - a term we detest by the way! This generation is one of the first which is truly Pagan; many have been brought up within Pagan families or in multi-denominational communities and do not carry the same monotheistic baggage that many of us have had to learn to cast off. We think this will result in one of the biggest challenges for neo- Paganism and particularly Wicca, as the older generation strive to maintain the integrity of the philosophy and beliefs that have developed over the years, while the new generation attempt to incorporate new ideas which may be at odds with the old established doctrines."
-- From The Witches' Voice interview with Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone by Caroline Kenner

When I read this paragraph from the TWV interview with Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone, I was truly heartened. As a 28-year-old Pagan, I still come across, from Elders, the attitude of: "Well, you weren't there when being a Witch was so secretive and there were no books out! You have it so much easier than we did, so you don't know what it means to really be a Witch!" Or, "You aren't a real Witch because you haven't been initiated in X Tradition (or Path, or Family, etc.)!" It disturbs me to still find this attitude in paths that profess to be progressive and moving with the Earth. It is a dark topic that not a lot of older Pagans seem willing to talk about, especially those in a specific tradition. What we need to look at now is why there is a turn towards a more black and white view of Paganism among some Elders and why there is an aversion towards allowing the Older Paths to evolve and accept fresh ideas from the next generation.

In some ways, I suppose this is a sign that Paganism has truly become more mainstream. All major religions have those who know that their way is the correct way. The attitude of "We are right and you are wrong" has created so much havoc in the world, that as much as it can be a barometer of becoming more mainstream, it seems counter to the ideals that the average Pagan holds dear.

This can also cause many problems for the new Pagan who is truly searching for teachers. One is that the young Pagan can find an Elder who has this attitude and be so turned off, that she is disheartened and stops her Spiritual quest. And second, in the most extreme (and a trap that I unfortunately fell into), a new Pagan can be taken in by an Elder who is only interested in his or her own prestige and end up feeling used and scarred from the experience. In some cases, it may even be abusive. This can result in a new Pagan turning away from Paganism altogether or being wary even of true Elders who genuinely want to give of their knowledge.

I know that a majority of Elders in this community are there to genuinely help new Pagans find their way, but as we move forward in strength and power as a community, this is a topic that must be talked about and discussed. In some ways, the more we try to convince the general public that Pagan groups are not cults and not abusive, the more we avoid the subject all together. As I've said to people in several different communities: How can we be taken seriously as a community if we are turning against our own? How can telling a new Pagan that his or her spiritual experience is not as legitimate as the Elder's experience be a good thing?

From my experience, it has always been expected that we respect our Elders in the Craft. And I fully agree with this. But I also ask Elders to respect those who are new to (or young members of) the Pagan Community. We may not have been through the time where Paganism had to be kept secretive, but we have had our own experiences with discrimination, bigotry, and hostility. We are the future of Paganism, and are trying to move it forward. We also have new ideas. Maybe it's a new way to meditate, or a different take on a part of the ritual. Maybe it's a view of the Goddess that could be considered entirely unorthodox, or maybe it's just interpreting someone's writings differently. Maybe it's the integration of a totally different pantheon with the one that's already being used. The thinking is truly evolutionary and global since we have access to so many new ideas and beliefs.

Without influx of new ideas and experiences, the Pagan movement would grow stagnant and die. As Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone said, Elders need not dismiss the ideas of the next generation. We have so many examples of how religions can stagnate and turn away practitioners that we should be learning from them and making sure we don't fall prey to their mistakes.

I have had the unfortunate experience of falling prey (for a long time) to an "Elder" who has done what I have just described: belittling my own personal spiritual experiences, not listening to new ideas, and telling me that the tradition I was learning was the only real way to be a Witch. Granted, what happened to me was an extreme, but I have heard and read about other Elders who think the same way. For a time, after I left, I was disillusioned about the Goddess and in doubt of my own spirituality. I have been lucky and blessed that I've had a lot of good Elders cross my path since then, but I wonder what would have happened if I wasn't so lucky. I might have turned away from Goddess all together, and I think that realization is a sad one.

Pagans are people who celebrate the Earth and Her changes. She is changing all the time, and as a community, we have to shift and grow with that change. It is the only constant we are given.

Athena




ABOUT...

Rev. Gina Pond


Location: Zurich, Switzerland

Author's Profile: To learn more about Rev. Gina Pond - Click HERE

Bio: Athena is a Witch currently living on the East Coast, but will soon be moving to the West Coast. She is now a solitary, and looking into a more shamanistic approach to her magick. She is also an AIDS activist, political activist, writer, and the mother of two cats. And when she's not doing that, she works as a scientist.




Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE




Email Rev. Gina Pond... (Yes! I have opted to receive invites to Pagan events, groups, and commercial sales)

To send a private message to Rev. Gina Pond ...



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