I see a lot of monoheists and atheists on these forums - arguing the standards and philosopies regarding God or the lack thereof.
I must say I reject both atheism and monotheism and those two characteristics of mine make me ever so popular but that is why I am making the argument for Paganism.
This is not to say we should all dig a burrow in the forest and eat tree bark for the rest of our lives. Nothing like that.
Paganism is, instead of contuing the tradition of worshipping mortal heroes, worshipping or rather deciphering the activities of the Sun, Moon and stars in order to better access the elements of the Earth, our immediate patron.
I feel it is especially necessary for me to bring this argument to you all since the elements of the Earth are becoming more and more precious.
As a follower of Wicca, I'm feeling the pull of nature more and more these days. It's a shame the things you see people do to this planet. Not to mention what nature can do to itself. My pour gardenia plant didn't fair too well in the hail storm we had a few weeks ago and neither did my fir trees.
The naturall resources should be used most appropriately; nobdoy denies that; what is so special with paganism?
Worshiping anything leaves you open to (a)manipulation by others and (b) justifies chosen ignorance. Both which have no positive effects.
ok but what about the attempt to understand and access something we are all dependant upon like the Sun. Isn't that simply a sophisticated form of worship.
We already understand the Sun. Nothing else to learn from it at present point. We already know how to harass(use) it for our benefit. The only thing standing in the way of true progress forward on Earth, is to get the greedy profiteers, to share the multiple ways it can be used for everyone.
I'm with you. We have to get the greedy profiteers. But why is it so important to the greedy profs that the Jesus freaks kkeep up the pressure on the feds to give the rich welfare hogs more tax breaks.
Power, Wealth, Greed and Control!
I wrote a Hub on "Why World Peace Is Not Happening". All of the above applies.
Power, Wealth, Greed and Control!
Isn't this the nature of mankind? We will never stop seeking these things. They are ingrained
Only those who don't ever experience them complain that we should stop them.
You share a common sentiment among men, and an even more common one among American men. Our system has been set up to reward those who are hell-bent on success, and to villify those who have a more embracing concept of life. You are a final product of the environment you have been created in.
Whether those traits you mention are ingrained in mankind or simply socialized, you would have to make a better case to convince many of us. Those who embrace a faith that is centered around love and sacrifice will probably not follow you down the machiavellian rabbit hole you invite us all to share with you.
Machiavellian in the purest sense. Machiavelli was an unashamed pragmatist, a man centered on the definition of good as simply meaning what was good for him. Many reject the concept, at least rhetorically. Far more attempt to follow it without verbalizing it as a central doctrine in their lives, as you have.
I give you credit for being open about your lust for power, wealth, greed and control. You are not a hypocrite about it, as many of us are who reject it as unseemly. But for the Christian, they must be rejected at some level, or the faith makes no sense. The buddhist runs into the same brick wall, as does the Taoist.
You have gone cannibal, willing to eat those that are obstacles to your path, and further willing to admit it on a public forum.
I give you a certain twisted credit for that.
I think you have me too far out to one side.
But can you really name a period in the history of the world when those 4 factors have not ruled any society, including, or maybe especially, the catholic church.
There have been many examples of societies that have rejected the idea, actually. The Nordic countries keep that philosophy pretty much at bay and see the collective as valuable. Many small societies have been based on a sense of collective survival.
I am not here to defend a church, or even a religion. I am saying that your approach to life is certainly not universal, though it is absolutely well represented across the globe.
What societies evolve into and what individuals persue are not always in accord. You have perfectly adapted to the mores of your environment. Many are very uncomfortable with it, while still having to live within the greater society that supports the philosophy.
I believe your pursuit of the four tenents of your faith is self perpetuating. As you become more aggressive others must follow suit simply to protect themselves.
Why do keep making the assumption that these 4 items are my approach to life? Just because I believe they are ingrained in mankind and drive societies does not mean I strive for Power, Wealth, Greed and Control. There are definitely degrees of each item. We all have them, some to minor degrees, some major. I think I have them to an average level.
I also think that if anyone believes they do not have these traits at all had better review their self assessment.
I don't disagree that we can all be prone to these traits, but reject that we have to be quite as passive as you seem to be in rejecting them as negative influences.
We all see ourselves as having just the "average" amount of the things that embarrass us most. It's a defence mechanism so we can shave in the morning.
I agree with you. I probably am too passive. Could come from working in the major commercial banks for 30 years and seeing it to an extreme everyday. That is one reason I finally got out.
By the way, I just started following your hubs. You have a good pragmatic and focused mind.
I really don't think you can speak for everyone as "having them". I will say that everyone is affected by them.
I think that's the first time I've seen believers in Jesus blamed for the state of the economy. Maybe you should research Christianity before you opt for paganism. But whatever.
I disagree- one can worship and not be manipulated.
Manipulation comes into play when one listens to another and acts accordingly with out questioning what they have been told.
My 'worship' of the Earth does not open me up to any manipulation. Unless it me telling myself that I need to take my recyclables to town. Maybe I'm manipulated by that fat red tomato growing in my garden, it says, 'eat me' and so I do.
As I mentioned above, if one does not question, then one chooses ignorance.
However- I have found that most pagans know a whole lot more about Christianity than Christians...so who is really more ignorant?
Most pagans are seekers of knowledge, open minded, non-judgmental, and very curious.
Of course, as with any organized religion, there are those who have defined what they believe and will not budge one bit and will argue about what is 'right and true'. I can see how they may be called ignorant because they chose to not expand their knowledge.
As for the Sun....we still have things to learn about the Sun. The Sun holds many mysteries still.
Yes, we know the basics and obvious things about the Sun, but what we 'knew' 10-15 years ago is not the same as what we 'know' today. Just look at the history of our understanding of sun spots and solar flares.
Somehow this discussion went from paganism to politics- well, here is where I do agree.
For a planet were the religion with the largest following speaks of love and compassion, we sure are in a world of hurt. Greed is one of the ultimate sins and yet greed is running rampant.
With so much greed and hate in the world, perhaps this is Hell? lol.
So, you fall into category (b). Good to know.
Hey Jonathan. I'd be wililng to listen to your argument, but I'd first need to see a list of proposed holidays. The Christians bring a lot of time off, candy and presents to the table. What's paganism got to offer other than Samhain?
Well first off, Christmas is more or less a pagan holiday, at least in its timing. Saturnalia, to the Romans, or Yule, to the Norse, is the Festival of the Unconquerable Sun where people celebrate the Winter Solstice.
Yule: December 21 - January 9.
Christmas: December 25; Epiphany: January 6.
As for Easter, the very word has pagan origins. Derived from an old possibly pre-English word, Eostre, meaning 'the resurrection of nature'. Spring, in other words.
And then there's Halloween (or Samhain), an Ancient Irish tradition that is still completely pagan in nature. Although there is now much less emphasis on the harvest feast and more on the scaring away of restless spirits.
All Soul's Day, November 2nd. Celebrated by the Aztecs as Day of the Dead. A feast to commemorate the recently dead and to assisst their souls in their journey to the underworld.
March 25, the Anunciation, when Gabriel appeared before Mary to tell her she would give birth to the Christ, was celebrated by the ancient Babylonians as the Festival of Cybele. Cybele was revered by the Babylonians as (you guessed it) the mother of the messiah.
St George's Day in April happens during the week of the Festival of Parilia.
The Feast of Saint John the Baptist in June is close to the ancient pagan Festival of Water.
And the Assumption of Mary in August coincides with the ancient Greek Festival of the Goddess Diana.
" It's a shame the things you see people do to this planet." The natural world does not produce a profit therefore it has no meaning, and thus it is do what you want with it.
Really??? No meaning??? Then that means we have no meaning, right? Shame you feel that way, because I certainly don't. My gardenia bush has purpose, not only in the lovely blooms it provides but the nectar it gives to bees for pollination of other plants to grow. Everything in nature has a purpose even down to the rock you stumble upon.
As someone who identifies as Pagan, I'd just like to point out that I don't live in a burrow in the forest, nor do I eat tree bark.
And most Pagan faiths honor the elemental energies, which is quite different than engaging in worship.
And a note to just_curious: I have a minimum of two spiritual occasions of note per month I can observe, but they don't require me to take time off from work, and they are marked without candy or presents. Paganism is a lot healthier diet-wise and far less materialistic than secularly-marketed, Christian-derived holidays.
Not quite true. A lot of the so called Christian holiday celebrations are basically Pagan. Easter eggs and chocolate bunnies, for example, have nothing to do with the resurection of Christ and everything to do with the Pagan celebration of spring (likewise Christmas trees, yuletide log and many more are of Pagan origin).
So you can be pagan and still celebrate with candy.
"Shame you feel that way"/
Fats Domino - Ain't That a Shame.
Yes but you are, I would guess, not destroying the planet with radiation, pollution, population, war etc., which all happens, because I am stating, there is the general interpretation, that the planet has no meaning by itself, and which has to made by making stuff.
Hehe...I like that song.
As man has progressed, these things that are made and do indeed harm our planet have consequences. You are quite right about that one and also about me trying very hard not to contribute to further destruction of natural resources. I just find it sad that we take it so for granted and don't respect the environment enough.
"I just find it sad that we take it so for granted and don't respect the environment enough."
Well the Aquarian Age officially begins Dec
23 2012. Maybe we can hope there will come a new consciousness before it is to late.
:: Gotcha, since I love water, mayhap I can grow fins and swim with the creatures of the sea then.
Think that is Aquarian not Aquarium Age, but who knows and I am a fish myself.
Yeah, I get that and for me that would be a nice shift and yes I'm a lover of the movie Waterworld. To imagine how life would be if you could survive in both places is a hopeful thought. I don't know what the coming years will bring though I've read up on much of the speculation, but I do hope we gain some insight from past deeds.
The word pagan in biblical times simply meant anyone that was not Christian or Jewish. Nothing more. It was not specific in its enumeration of a belief system, nor was it a pejorative term. There were simply Christians, Jews and All The Rest (Pagans). To make any kind of belief statements in regard to paganism is kind of a misnomer. It emcompasses many ideas and faith traditions.
"To make any kind of belief statements in regard to paganism is kind of a misnomer."
To make a misnomer I would say that a basic tenant of Paganism would be that what is considered as sacred is something empirical and natural and not something in sky somewhere.
You can define it that way if you like, but all the pagan gods of biblical times would disagree.
When the temple was turned into a place of pagan worship, they made sacrifices to gods in the pagan pantheon, many gods for everything from harvest gods to fertility gods and on and on. Paganism was anyone not worshipping the Christian or Jewish god. That's all. It had nothing to do with earth mother or druids, though it would encompass all of that.
Simply all those that worship outside the Christian or Jewish umbrella.
"You can define it that way if you like, but all the pagan gods of biblical times would disagree."
So who is talking about biblical times besides you and what does it have to do with the discussion? The subject here is 'Argument for Paganism'.
The bible is just another tome to a Pagan. A book full of myths, Zeus and Poseidon are just as relevant!
Because it is the origin of the term.
Not bible thumping here, just explaining how the term is intended.
My source is Bart Ehrman, Head of Religious Studies at UNC.
Get mad at him.
Actually, the word originates in the Latin, 'paganus', meaning 'rustic'. Later, the word was adopted by the Roman Church to denote non-worshippers as weak or inferior as the Church was co-opting all of their feast days to gain followers.
The word in its origin has no religious distinctions whatsoever.
I do understand your point, Bruce, that the term Paganism is a bit too broad, but naming the thread, Argument for Neo-Hellenism or Argument for Wiccanism or Argument for Animism didn't seem like a good idea.
"Paganism is simultaneously a prehistoric and postmodern religion-it is as ancient as the fertility symbols associated with the veneration of gods and goddesses tens of thousands of years ago, while its newest forms have emerged as recently as the mid-20th century."
http://www.patheos.com/Library/Pagan/Or … nings.html
I am mad as hell and won't take it anymore.
Personally I define my own terms. The origin of the term makes no difference to me.
Wow, a lot happened since I went and ate dinner. I think with anything you follow you must be not only willing to learn what you are following, but also the history behind the following. This said after reading thebrucebeat, he has gained a new follower. It's a refreshing change coming from a fellow southerner.
"Power, Wealth, Greed and Control: self assessment test. No. I do not strive for any of these things.
Paganism is all very well but who gets to make up all the rules? Druid Aardvark might say that you must cavort about a camp fire covered in marmalade to become one with your Chi, but Witch Gwendell says you have to eat lots of hazel nuts whilst holding three sticks over a pond at full moon.
Paganism strikes me as being a 'pick-and-mix' religion where you make it up as you go along. It's like popping down your sweetshop; randomly selecting from a range of fizzy cola bottles, lemon bonbons, pink shrimps, and licorice laces, then hoping that the Arch Druid at the till accepts your offering ensuring that you included some mojos.
Paganism is a big umbrella. There are some paths that are regimented and some are not.
One can join a pagan group and follow the rules established by the group or fly solo.
That's the beauty of it.
As a pagan, I make my own rules.
As goes offerings on an alter, I have seen Laffy Taffy as an offering and no one complained.
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