Articles/Essays From Pagans
December 1st. 2013 ...
A Pragmatic Look at Neo Paganism
Leaving a Pagan Group – Part 1: To Leave or to Stay?
The Tarot as a Tool for Raising Consciousness
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
Nine Creeds: A Statement and Explanation of My Beliefs
The Celtic Tree Calendar
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 ...
Weather Magick: Who is Responsible for the Weather?
Broom Closet: In or Out?
Bottle Spells and Magick in Hoodoo Tradition
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
The Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage, Part 1 (The Center)
September 15th. 2013 ...
Some Pagan Prayers
Lunar Insight Moon Musings: Bramble and Cerridwen
The Holocaust Survivor (Part II)
September 8th. 2013 ...
Introduction to the Five-way Road: A Pagan Pilgrimage
The Druidic Concept of Nwyfre
The Holocaust Survivor (Part 1)
Giving and Helping
September 1st. 2013 ...
Use a Flyswatter for a Fly: More on the Dark Arts
How Spells Work
Is It Really 'Energy'?
August 25th. 2013 ...
Mother Nature’s Way: Forging a Distinctly American Path
Healing Moon Ritual
Unconditional Love: The Paradox of Perfect Love
Earth to Soul/Sole
August 18th. 2013 ...
How Not to Fall in the Bunny Trap
Why Are You Like That? Thoughts on Hoodoo and Appropriation
Finding the Right Coven
The Knowledge Found in Silence
Moon Musings, Planetary Preponderances, Hazelnuts and Magick Wands
August 11th. 2013 ...
“I Survived a Weekend with Galina Krasskova”
The Charges of the Goddess and God with Commentary
August 4th. 2013 ...
Fair Weather Witches
Pagan Studies II: Modern Paganism in the Americas
Pagan Abbeys - A Practical Heritage for Spiritual Lay and Professional Cloistered Communities
July 28th. 2013 ...
Crystals 101: A Helpful Guide For Beginners
The More the Merrier? It’s not Only an Inaccuracy; it’s an All Out Farce!
My Pagan Manifesto
July 21st. 2013 ...
I'm a Witch, Not a Wiccan: A Brief Summary of Broad Pagan Designations
Rethinking Community for Solitaries
13 Keys: The Beauty of Tiphareth
July 14th. 2013 ...
Ramblings of a Pagan Guy: Stupid Clichés We Use (Part II)
Pagan Humanism: A Tradition of Rational Religion
Moon/Planetary Musings: The Holly King and John Barleycorn
July 7th. 2013 ...
Coping With Depression: Learning to Dance with the Sacred Twins
Shamanic Healing of Anxiety and Panic Attacks
Humility and Community Service
H is for Hubris
June 30th. 2013 ...
How To Feel The Energy Around You
Planning A Ritual
Why Pagans Might Benefit from Counseling Techniques
The Weight of Contemplation: When the Silent Self Grows Louder
June 23rd. 2013 ...
Magick and Play
Tarot Spell for Protection
Moon Musings and Planetary Preponderances: RE-fuse, RE-duce, RE-use, RE-pair and RE-cycle
June 16th. 2013 ...
How To Stay Spiritual Amidst This Chaos?
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Samhain Inspired Thoughts on Community
Article ID: 14784
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 783
Times Read: 2,350
RSS Views: 17,619
Author: Crick [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: October 16th. 2011
Times Viewed: 2,350
Hey folks, Samhain energies are at work and so I woke up this morning with some thoughts that I would like to share. First I would like to preface my thoughts with an analogy that I learned about many years ago. Basically, it is about a frog and a scorpion.
The Scorpion wanted to get to the opposite shore of the English Channel. And so he sought out various creatures that could assist him in the endeavor. Each time he was turned down, in part because of the fear of who he was and in part because of what he was capable of doing to others.
At any rate, he finally came to Frog with his entreaty. At first Frog turned him down like all of the others before him. But Scorpion kept pleading, as he knew this was his last chance to reach the opposite shore. Finally Frog relented and agreed to carry scorpion across the channel on his back. When they got to the middle of the channel, Scorpion stung Frog with his venomous tail.
Aghast, Frog cried out to Scorpion, “Why did you sting me, for I am dying and we shall both surely drown now?”
Scorpion responded, “You knew the nature of my personality before you agreed to help me!”
There are several reasons why I offer this analogy as a preface to my early morning thoughts. Imagine that, an Irishman resorting to the art of Triad (grin) . To begin with, there has been a great deal of talk over the years by modern pagans about “pagan community”. The reality is that such a community is a long way from becoming a valid entity. It is a concept that is rife with the insecurities of those who claim to adhere to such a concept. Many modern pagans were once members of the Abraham faiths, in particular, Christianity. And in many cases, such folks have parents, siblings, relatives and friends who still are Christians or what have you. And that is all good.
However, this has created a consistent undercurrent of insecurity because these modern pagans feel an overwhelming need to either hide their current pagan beliefs from their families and friends or to frantically seek approval from such folks.
To my mind, if folks have doubts about their self-professed beliefs, then perhaps they should reassess their desire to follow said beliefs. For to be true to others, one must first be able to be true to yourself. And such insecurities are detrimental to any efforts to build a genuine community whether it be modern paganism or what have you.
In view of such insecurities, there are many modern pagans -- either individuals or groups -- who feel that their primary mission as pagans is to engage in outreach with other religions. In spite of the fact that there are over four-hundred established religions in the modern world, this generally means that these modern pagans ignore four-hundred of these religions and reach out primarily and in most cases, specifically to the Christian religion.
At this point, I would like to point out that in this age of electronics that genuine communications skills are falling to the wayside. The current generation is losing the art of one-on-one communication due to their reliance on such electronic devices.
And as such, there will inevitably be the "me, me, me" types who will assume they know what I am trying to convey here. They will not seek clarification, because they already have the ‘answers’ to my thoughts… at least within their own self imposed limitations they will think so.
To such folks, I can only shrug my shoulders and hope that one day they will actually grow spiritually and thus find the genuine wisdom to understand a concept that is greater than themselves.
It will be said that that damn Crick hates Christians. My response would be “of course not”, but like the scorpions, I am aware of their own established behavior.
It will be said that that damn Crick is against community outreach. My response would be “Of course not”, but it should not be a primary and driving force in order to validate my pagan beliefs. And such outreach should be “attempted” with an expectation to meet with an equal amount of reciprocity... reciprocity of which is clearly absent from the Christian community. Yes of course there are exceptions to every rule, but it is realistically not the norm.
What then to my mind should be our primary goal you may ask? Well actually there are two very general goals if the modern pagan community is ever to reach a degree of cohesion and thus validity as a genuine community.
The first is to accept the realities of your chosen path. There are very few, if any, real “Masters” in modern paganism. The regurgitation of over the last fifty years of "101 Paganism" should be clear confirmation of this. And besides, we are all students over the course of our lives.
It is this denial of being a student that gives birth to the plethora of twenty and thirty-year-old ‘masters’ that modern paganism is noted for. It is also this denial that precludes modern pagans from acknowledging the pagan paths around the world that have been in place for many, many generations. And finally, it is this denial that sets modern pagans upon those who actually may know more than just the basic 101 scripts that defines modern paganism.
This is why the word “Elder” creates such a conflicting morass amongst modern pagans. For to define the word "Elder” in the manner that it is used among pre-modern pagans is to admit that one may actually be a student and not the “wise know it all’ that so many modern pagans strive to present themselves as, no matter how subtlety it is done. Yes, I know. Let the denials begin. It is to be expected when insecurities cloud reality. Besides, in this modern generation, everyone is right and no one is responsible, which is why we have the current me, me, me mindset in the first place.
Anyway, moving on.
The modern pagan community needs to find the strength to grow beyond such self-centered concepts of me-ism. Each community, pagan or otherwise is the sum of its members. If the modern pagan community is ever to become a genuine community, it must first learn to be true to its own tenets. Many within the modern pagan community will mouth the words acceptance and diversity. Sounds like good tenets to establish a community by doesn’t it?
And yet as soon as a free thinker such as myself proffers an “opinion” that is divergent from some other pagan, well … the ugliness rears its head. Hateful and disparaging words are hurled at will, in an attempt to hurt the author of such individual thoughts, and in extreme cases, threats of physical violence are made. Are such reactions, which in all reality are based upon personal insecurities really conductive to creating a sense of cohesiveness in a budding community?
And finally, we need to find the strength to break out of the modern concept of “me-ism” and reach out to other pagans in this fragile community without preconceptions and/or preconditions. As an umbrella community, we do not walk in lockstep with each other. The modern pagan community, unlike pagan communities of olden times which consisted of folks of identical beliefs and usually of small enclaves such as covens, tribes and the like, is now a morass of many, many different paths.
We need to reach a genuine understanding of the modern interpretation of pagan community that goes beyond just mouthing the words.
Perhaps when we develop genuine outreach amongst ourselves then we can validate the inordinate amount of energy that some modern pagan individuals/groups employ towards the Christian religion as being based on something other than an attempt to give in to ones personal insecurities.
Before I stop here and grab my first cup of java of the morning, please keep in mind that the preceding thoughts are simply the personal opinion of one old witch who has more years behind him then he has in left in front of him. And before you allow the "me -ism" to take precedence in your thoughts, please understand that my sole purpose in this rant is to spark the fuse of thought... it is an attempt to ignite a blaze of introspection that in the end will open the door to a understanding that is greater than you or I.
Now, where is that cup of java?
Location: Manheim, Pennsylvania
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