Some Misconceptions of 'Harm None'
Article ID: 14522
Age Group: Adult
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Author: Rev. Mirado Crow
Posted: June 19th. 2011
Times Viewed: 4,328
We as Wiccans all know about the "Harm None" Law of the Craft of the Wise. Many people have interpreted this Law in many ways, but where is it that we draw the line? Some people will claim that Wiccans are to be Pacifists because of this law, some saw that it is only a guideline...but should we really see this Harm None Law as a mere guideline, or a serious law that protects the sacristy of our beloved Community?
I have been observing within the Pagan Community that there are people that would dress, and act the way they wish because they think it will harm none...when in fact it does harm. Would anyone do anything about this? No...because they don't want to hurt this person's feelings. This particular incident I personally witnessed at a Witches Ball that I had hosted in a previous year. This Harm None Law has been interpreted in such ways that we have allowed toxic people into this community. Last time I had checked, one of the things our Religion is about self-empowerment...not the slavery of the people who practice it. The most dreadful thing I have noticed is “tolerance in the name of tolerance”, and the things people in our ranks have allowed to happen because of it. This is what destroys something as beautiful as our community.
I have learned the meanings of the Wiccan Rede. One of the lines says, "With a fool no season spend, nor be counted as his friend...” Those who will allow things to happen just because they are tolerating in the name of tolerance, are fools. This has lead to Toxic Groups, Toxic Books, Dabblers, and even pseudo-branches to enter our Peaceful Community. And it's all because we are letting it all in the name of tolerance...
We also have this "Live and Let live" concept that allows this cancer to reign throughout our community. We ignore a group that forces their members to stay within it. Leaders demand that the members of their group call them Lord or Lady, in selfish vainglory. And we do NOTHING.
Some people will state that since we don't believe in the concept of absolute evil that we don't believe in evil itself. That is a blatant misconception and twisted belief. We do believe in evil, because it is alive and well today.
I have heard many times that these individuals are just "misguided". Well, lets see.... was Hitler evil, or just misguided? Could you really call a mass genocide the result of being misguided? Was Elizabeth Bathory evil or just misguided when she killed hundreds of virgin girls so she might bathe in their blood because she thought it would preserve her youth?
Though we don't have mass murders in the Pagan Community nor do we have nut jobs like Charles Manson, we do have people who act very close to this. We also have people in our community who would indulge in "character assassinations" for their own vainglory. These people do this because they fully believe in ‘divide and conquer’ to get whatever it is that they want. Some of these people do this to get a group to follow them, or hate each other or to destroy what was once a very healthy group. And we still do nothing, because we don't want to be the intolerant ones.
So why and how could we expect any respect from the cowan world when we have these toxic people in our ranks? We can't. This makes us no better than the Catholic Vatican when they try to hide the fact that their Priests molested little boys...and that is sad. But it is a very true concept. When we don't address the issue and take care of it, we are hiding or ignoring it.
It is not until we stand up and take back our community that our community will be respected. We have to take our community back from these toxic people.
I'm not talking about going in with a gun, and forcing them to resign from their offices. I'm talking about seeing the toxicity and calling it out for what it is: evil. These people need to be called out before other people get hurt. When we allow this toxicity to continue parading through our community, we are the ones allowing harm to be done and therefore causing harm.
If we don't stand together and say, "Enough is enough" and stamp out the toxic people in our community, these people win by default and we have nobody to blame but ourselves. Even though Paganism doesn't have a Central Authoritarian Hierarchy, we can still be self-policing and stop these individuals in their tracks. When we see an individual of this nature, we need to give them what they want, "The Spotlight". Though this spotlight will bite them in the rear.
Call them out where they stand, even though it may be in front of a group they are leading. It is far better to show a corrupted group what their leaders really are, than to wait until they are alone to call them out. The victims of these people will see that you are not afraid to stand up for what is truly right and what our community truly believes in and practices...rather than cower and not help someone who has fallen victim to these people's toxic ways.
When I created The Black Rose Tradition, I had this in thought. I wanted to prevent the prevailing of toxic individuals within the community, so I created strict law to follow within The Black Rose Tradition. These laws were also designed to prevent corruption of the leaders. Though toxic people will disguise themselves as the curious student desperately wanting help or teaching, watch their actions and body language and you'll know who is only there for toxic intentions.
When I saw corruption, I called out the individuals and made them face their charges. They retaliated by calling me a paranoid and corrupt leader. this is to be expected from toxic individuals when they are called out. The will try to make you out to be the toxic one, but you must stand your ground. No matter what happens, do make sure that you prevent harm from befalling upon you. I would hate to hear about anyone getting hurt because they chose to stand their ground.
If you choose to leave the group, that's fine...but don't do it silently, because by leaving silently, you are causing harm. You are taking the knowledge with you and leaving your brothers and sisters of the community to continue to be victimized by these toxic people. If the group isn't toxic, and you decide to leave, please, do it silently and without a scene. Toxicity spreads like a hot zone communicable disease, one that can be irreparable if left alone and not dealt with.
We need to keep in mind that these toxic people are power hungry, and attention seekers. Like children, they will seek attention by any means possible. If it's not given with what little good they do, then they will seek it through negative means. Psychology proves that. And that is what we should do for them: show them all the attention they want by showing what they and their actions really are. They, if smart, will change their toxic ways and become positive hands in helping to mold our communities’ growth.
Some people will fully agree with me on this; some will fully disagree with me. I really don't care because that will not stop me from spreading the truth about this toxicity that has been taking over our beloved community. And will not stop me from doing my part to stamp out this toxicity.
I'm not asking for a revolution or a Pagan Holy War...what I am asking is that we all stand together to stamp out the toxic individuals and practices that are really harming our community. I am not saying that this is going to be easy. I am saying that it would help our community grow in a healthy way. By stamping out these toxic individuals and practices, we will allow for the healthy growth of our community as a respectable religion as well as benefit ourselves and our fellow brothers and sisters of the community.
This same article can be found in my upcoming book, "Wicca: For the New Generation".
Copyright: Copyright©2007 - 2010. Rev. Mirado Crow, The Black Rose Tradition. All Rights Reserved.
Rev. Mirado Crow
Location: Burlington, Kentucky
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