Modern Pagan Culture
Article ID: 10408
Age Group: Adult
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Posted: January 1st. 2006
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Recently, I had a conversation with a family member and we were discussing how different religious groups seem to have holidays that fall on or around the same times of year. We also came across the subject of how Pagan beliefs influenced different monotheistic religions; a subject which probably should be left for another time. However, the discussion also entailed Modern Pagan holidays and culture. Therefore, I decided to write about modern Pagan beliefs for this website. When I saw what the topic was, it just seemed to click. Pagan culture may indeed be growing in popularity. First, I will tell you what I like about Modern Paganism. Then, I will discuss where I think there is room for improvement. Lastly, I will talk about what I think might happen in the future. By far I am not, nor do I consider myself an expert on these matters. These are only the views of a practicing Pagan.
There are many things that I enjoy about modern Pagan culture. First and foremost, it is one of the subjects that I enjoy writing poetry about. There are also many talented poets, artists, writers, and story tellers out there. I am extremely happy to see that Pagan culture is interwoven into many aspects of our daily lives. I have noticed cartoons based on Pagan values such as The Avatar and W.I.T.C.H, as well as many fiction and non fiction books geared for children, teens, and adults as well. Look in the newspaper and you will see horoscopes every day, and I have seen a few articles locally as well. One doesn’t realize what a wide range of things in our culture have underlying Pagan ideals. Look around you, I mean really look around. It isn’t very hard for one to find something Pagan-based. There is a plethora of information on the Internet as well. I am glad of the fact that there are growing trends involving Pagans. Furthermore, it pleases me to be able to track down groups, individuals, and information, due to the Internet. When I was a teen there wasn’t much out there…well I mean I’m sure there was but where would one look? I was drawn to Paganism, but I was stuck in a Catholic religion that I did not feel a part of. I was very depressed while going through the motions as people made fun of me and had very cruel intentions towards me. I have recently found a Pagan group in my area because of this website, and for that I am most grateful. They are a group of really beautiful people. They are kind, generous, and understanding. The group has accepted me for who I am and have not tried to change me. For a long time, ever since I was a child, I felt alone in my endeavors. Now, I still practice solitary, not solely though, for I also enjoy the company of fellow Pagans as well. I am much happier now in my beliefs than I ever was before. I enjoy the fact that I am able to be taught different ways of Paganism, not to mention the different aspects of the craft such as candle making, herbs and divination, to name only a few. I find this path that I have chosen very gratifying.
However, there is always room for change and improvement in anything. It seems to me that the different things I’ve read have clued me in that after every so many generations, religions of the times do change. The more the information age takes hold of us, the easier it is for us to learn about things that where previously inaccessible, or off limits. My thoughts are that because of the Internet, Pagan religions will continue to grow. Not slowly and without navigability, but vehemently with stealth. Nevertheless, with time comes change. One of the things that would do well with change would be the overall Pagan organizational skills. I believe that organization is happening now, however on a small scale. What I mean by small scale is that there are many Pagans getting together, but mostly in small groups. From my perspective we have come a long way but could go further. Another thing that would benefit from change, are the Pagan based businesses. I do not believe that most of those businesses are as publicly announced as they could be. I realize that many Pagan people are still behind closed doors, but the businesses that are targeted for the Pagan community could be more pronounced. This might help with acceptance from the non-Pagan community. Of course, there are still always going to be those people who are not going to be so kind no matter what. But I firmly believe that the more positive exposure Paganism gets, the better off our culture will be. I also have the notion that we should be teaching our children as much as we possibly can. I do not think we are doing enough with them. I know I could be teaching and focusing more on my own children as well. As I sit and write this I also dream of a world without animosity towards Pagans, or anyone for that matter.
In the future, we will be accepted by mainstream religions. This is of course provided we continue to have a positive impact on our communities, and provided that the communities see this positive impact. Also, we should help to inform people in our community, as well as most importantly our youth of the misconceptions that can be perceived by many. Education is the key to abolishing any future intolerance. Look back in history over the last one thousand years, and look how far we have come. Now imagine with positive progression how far we will go! In the coming years, we will see more Pagans as tax-exempt associations, and organizations that will accept people of any background, with open arms. We can bring integrity and a bright future to our path. Who knows, maybe one day we shall become the mainstream religion. But if this happens we must beware of becoming like the religions we are so criticized and ostracized by today. We must stay alert and true to ourselves, true to nature, true our ways, and true to our beloved Goddess.
With Brilliantly Bright Blessings,
Location: Providence, Rhode Island
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