Articles/Essays From Pagans
March 9th. 2014 ...
Healing the Witch Within
Discovering Wicca as a Young Child
March Pisces Energy: Pre-natal Memories and Standing Upright
March 2nd. 2014 ...
Lessons of Ostara: Six Ways to Move Forward
The Wiccan Priest - The Misunderstood Role
Which is Which? Am I a Warlock or a Witch?
The Secret Teaching: Selected Aspects
February 23rd. 2014 ...
Wicca or Traditional Witchcraft: Some Differences
Everything is Not Under Your Control: Making Sense of the Senseless
The Wonders and Gifts of Paganism and Community
What Makes Us What We Are
February 16th. 2014 ...
Death, Grief, and Psychopomp Work in Shamanic Healing
The Stones of Fear: Anxiety Relief
Spiritual Traveler: Form To Essence
Alternative Medicine – What Is It?
February 9th. 2014 ...
Words of Power!
The Allure of Glamour in the Apocolypse
Lunar Insight Planetary Preponderances: Year of the Horse, Imbolc and Mercury Grazings
February 2nd. 2014 ...
The Magick of Jewelry and Metals
Building a Magick Mirror
The Golden Bough: a Study Guide (Part 2)
January 26th. 2014 ...
Love of Self: The Hardest Thing To Do
The Golden Bough as a Seminal Work in the Neo Pagan Movement (Part 1)
13 Keys: The Mercy of Chesed
Lightworking In The Screen Age: Staying Connected
January 19th. 2014 ...
Open Letter to the Goddess
A Southern Girl's Guide to Hospitality
Social Conventions and the Pagan World
January 12th. 2014 ...
Never Once Was There a An Athame Near My Chalice: My Very Sheltered Occultist Upbringing
One Wiccan's Journey Through Depression
January 5th. 2014 ...
Religion vs Practice: Defining Witchcraft in a Modern Age
Traditional Apprenticeships: Training in the Modern Pagan Abbey
2014's Magickal Magnificent Manifestations!
Lunar Insight Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances: Wise and Wild
December 29th. 2013 ...
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 3)
13 Keys: The Might of Geburah
Beyond The Season of Greed
December 22nd. 2013 ...
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 2)
December 15th. 2013 ...
The Hex Murder of 1928
My Top Ten Favorite Cauldrons (Part 1)
Lady of the Forest Mist (A Story of the Woods)
Lunar Insight Moon Musings: Hunting, Fires and Parting Shots
December 8th. 2013 ...
Help and Thoughts for Pagans New to the Journey
Using Your Wand in Reverse
Leaving a Group - Part 2: Leaving, Healing and Moving Forward
The Cry of the Soul
December 1st. 2013 ...
The Tarot as a Tool for Raising Consciousness
A Pragmatic Look at Neo Paganism
Leaving a Pagan Group – Part 1: To Leave or to Stay?
November 24th. 2013 ...
The Pagan and the Papacy
The Groovy Aquarian Christ: Jesus From a Pagan Perspective
November 17th. 2013 ...
For Love of the God
Which Witch? Philosophical and Psychological Roots of Wicca
A Threat to Religious Liberties?
November 10th. 2013 ...
Where did Aleister Crowley’s Influence on Wicca Go?
Thoughts on the Threefold Law/Law of Return
The Celtic Tree Calendar
Nine Creeds: A Statement and Explanation of My Beliefs
November 3rd. 2013 ...
The Mundane/Spiritual Mirror: What Does it Say About Your Life?
October 27th. 2013 ...
Thoughts On a Miley-Cyrus/ Robin-Thicke Society
On Being Wiccan: Some Unsolicited Advice
Pagan Religious Communities in your Area: Connecting With and Creating Them
Banishing, Invocation and the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram
October 20th. 2013 ...
Bottle Spells and Magick in Hoodoo Tradition
Weather Magick: Who is Responsible for the Weather?
Broom Closet: In or Out?
On Coven and Claws
October 13th. 2013 ...
Destroying to Create: A Lesson from the Dead
Consume the Scorpion- Scorpion Energy Revisited
October 6th. 2013 ...
UPG and U: A Breakdown and Building Up of Unverified and Unsubstantiated Personal Gnosis
Answering The Call from Spirit
Coping with the Loss of a Familiar
The Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage, Part 2 (The South)
September 29th. 2013 ...
Six Reasons Why Covens are Here to Stay
Priestessing and Titles: What's the Point?
Truth or Convenience? Questioning Motives for Spiritual Advancement
Speaking Up: The Conflict Between the Spiritualist and Our Human Experience
September 22nd. 2013 ...
Death of a Friendship within the Craft
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Rights and Perceptions
Article ID: 8103
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 3,728
Times Read: 3,265
Posted: December 28th. 2003
Times Viewed: 3,265
Where are we really? In my experience, we have a long way to go before true acceptance is achieved. I live in the heart of the Bible Belt and I see the intolerance and the ignorance every day. Even those who are trying to be "accepting" are usually vaguely insulting.
While I am not in the closet, I don't advertise either. It would probably be detrimental to my husband's career and my children's social lives if I were completely out. My husband is a soldier in the US Army, as I was for 14 years. There is no greater example of a cross-section of the melting pot that is the United States. And yet, there is almost no acceptance among the higher ranks of who and what I am. I have had my superiors flat out tell me that I did not deserve my children, that I was going to hell, that I was an embarrassment to the military. Let's keep in mind here that this statement was delivered to me, a soldier with an exemplary military record, above and beyond the call of duty. Let's also note that this same man had been in more disciplinary trouble than several soldiers put together. But because I was Pagan, I was a horrible soldier and person.
Recently, a good friend found out that I was Pagan. Her e-mail to me stated that she didn't hold it against me and that it wouldn't affect our friendship. Excuse me? Wouldn't hold it against me? Am I supposed to be grateful that she isn't going to hold MY choice of religion against me? Shouldn't it have been a non-issue? How would she have felt if I had told her that following Catholicism wouldn't affect our friendship? Why is Paganism always something to be tolerated? I feel that I should expect the same respect for my beliefs that many of more mainstream religions DEMAND.
My point is that I think there is a lot of misconception out there about who and what we are. The first thing anyone says to me when they discover my religion is that I don't look like a Pagan! I try not to smack them across the head and to calmly explain that Pagans are as diverse a group as any other. I try to explain that Pagans are all around them: as doctors, teachers, plumbers, lawyers, mothers, fathers, neighbors. That there are so many more facets to Paganism than the ones they see portrayed in the media and in the movies. Some may very well fit the stereotype, while many do not, and that is okay! I am the perfect example of this. On the surface, I am a 33-year-old, redheaded, slightly chubby (little stretch there!), Army wife and mother of four boys. I spend my days in track pants and a ponytail, chasing kids, a cat and a puppy. I take my son to karate, help another with his homework. I bake cookies, clean the house, cook dinner, change diapers. My mom is my best friend. My favorite color is lavender and I love the hair bands of the 80's. I collect anything cow-themed. I wear a pentagram around my neck. That is the only outward sign that makes me different. And why is that? Because I am not any different. I love my life, my husband, my kids, my family, my country. And I love my God and my Goddess.
Too many non-Pagans assume they understand Paganism and all that it stands for. Not too long ago, I was rudely approached by a non-Pagan woman. She asked me if that was a pentagram around my neck. I said that it was and she immediately tried to rip it off my neck. When asked what her issue was, I was told that I was in love with Satan and deserved to die in eternal pain. So, I asked her if she really knew anything about my beliefs. She could not come up with a single accurate fact. So, I told her that my beliefs centered on the basic tenet of "An it harm none, do what thou will," basically the Golden Rule of "Do unto others as you would have done unto you." I explained to her what my personal beliefs were and how I lived my life around them. In talking to her, I was able to point out some of the similarities between her beliefs and mine. When we parted, she hugged me, thanked me, and told me that she had no idea how truly in line with one another her basic beliefs and mine were. Surprisingly, she and I are on the road to becoming close friends. She has asked to borrow some of the books in my library because she said she was tired of being ignorant.
I wish there were more people like her. I don't expect all people to completely understand my religion and all that it entails. All I expect is the respect to hold my beliefs and have them honored as valid as any other. I think there is still much work to be done before the Pagan community as a whole can be accepted as a valid religion, instead of as a passing phase or fad. Too many times, my beliefs are dismissed as invalid or temporary. Too many believe that Paganism is merely a cult or Satan's "cover" or that its followers are suffering from low self-esteem. On the brink of the New Year, my resolution is to be more open and honest about who and what I am. If it takes confrontation to foster knowledge, so be it. I am a Witch and proud of it!!!
Location: Fort Huachuca, Arizona
Author's Profile: To learn more about Kim - Click HERE
Bio: Kiki is a practicing solitary, following a green path. She has been studying/practicing for about six years and is always learning more. She is a US Army vet and a mom of four, trying to raise her family in the best way she can. She is also a small-time published writer of children's stories.
Other Articles: Kim has posted 1 additional articles- View them?
Other Listings: To view ALL of my listings: Click HERE
Email Kim... (Yes! I have opted to receive invites to Pagan events, groups, and commercial sales)
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