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NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Should We Mainstream Our Faiths?
Article ID: 12525
Age Group: Adult
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Author: Disciple of Oghma
Posted: January 4th. 2009
Times Viewed: 2,541
There are many voices of the day calling for a mainstreaming of the Wiccan and pagan faiths. I believe much of this is a reaction of recently ex Christians or those who, for their many reasons, wish to overthrow the Christian power base. The problem therein lies with the intent and its reflection on our varying paths. Should we really try to mainstream our way?
First off, the current popular mainstream faith is popular because it plays off human sloth and human self-righteousness. It offers easy life answers to spirituality and the right to feel smug and superior because no one else knows ‘The Truth’ but you and yours. It is very watered down and bland from what it once was.
Whole sections of this "literal" and "for today" work are ignored by its own followers because it’s not practical in today’s society to kill whole villages for allowing a false teacher or murdering people for practicing homosexuality or witchcraft. It ignores Nature and the balance that lies therein, offering subjugation of will in exchange for "peace" in what a friend of mine explained as a spiritual S and M experience.
If we were to successfully mainstream our ways, would this happen to us? Would we have to water important things down to make them acceptable to today’s society? Would we be forced to create Absolute Truths and cater to human pride and prejudice?
How would we control human behavior and lusts without a system of judgment and reward and damnation? For responsibility for One's actions is the scariest proposition for most people. It’s much easier to assume that a God likes you most of all and, no matter how bad it is, somehow it will better your life.
Would we have to create a spiritual hierarchy of people leadership? Would they be provided homes and annual incomes? Would they ascend to positions of honor bordering on worship?
To mainstream we would have to organize. We would have to decide on a single path and find a way to discourage individual divergent thought to consolidate our new pagan/ Wiccan power base to become strong enough to drive away the Christian empire. Ours would no longer be a solitary commune with nature and the gods, be they Spirits of power or facets of a nameless creative force.
We would have to create a school and teach people ‘right and wrong’. We would no longer be able to pursue our many paths to communion, for we would have to unite worldwide under a single banner and prepare ourselves to overthrow the current order.
The current order in its own day had to go forth into the world and stir up dissention in the world building a militaristic self-righteous hateful order. They had to twist the definition of love and use it as a tool to put fear of an eternal loss into people, using it to control them. They had to go forth and enslave races for centuries and corrupt their faiths and their symbols.
They had to enact bloody movements like the Malus Maleficarum (witch hammer) which allowed themselves leave to torture and murder countless thousands over the course of its centuries of formation including women priestesses, herb gathers, women teachers, midwives that used natural anesthetics to dull the pain of childbirth and any woman suspiciously attuned to nature. Though they have quieted over the last 100 years, they would happily rise as a militant order to the perceived threat of an army, even a peaceful one.
But no, I do not believe we pagans can mainstream nor do I believe we should. If it were possible to do, we would lose ourselves in our pursuit. There are too many paths and liberties available to pagans and Wiccans. To mainstream, we would have to unify our beliefs into a single church and lose everything there is to being who we are.
Power is corrupting and self-righteous people destroy the world. I believe the most healing thing we can do for ourselves, our neighbors and our world is to live love, require metal respect, and offer an alternative path to the world while respecting their right to believe as they wish. That is what brought me to paganism.
Raised in a place where the less like myself I was, the more I conformed to a single image, the more loved and valuable and accepted I was. For there was no acceptance or peace unless I did. Until a dark pagan friend of mine showed me that he had love and acceptance from the world and for himself did I decide that I, who had the kingdom of heaven, wanted what he had.
Now because of His example I am free and have a power I never dreamed I would have. I am friends with a god, not his slave. I have the power to make positive decisions and the ability to react to things that happen to me.
What a free and enriching life that I had not dreamed existed! Not because he thrust his pentagram in my face and told me his way was best. But because he lived his path and respected me in my own ignorance. What better way to present our path?
This is supposed to be a personal spiritual journey not a spiritual usurpation of will. We are more than "conquerors in the army of god". The hateful pious love of the self-righteous assumption of our own superiority is what drove most of us to seek another faith in the first place.
Doesn’t it diminish our path to seek to do the same things that drove us to our place of spiritual seeking in the name of making this spiritual journey more openly available to the masses? Are we not just people who wish to learn and love and commune with our creator?
Disciple of Oghma
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
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