Monday, February 18, 2008

fundamentalist Pagans?

You might be a fundamentalist Pagan if you believe that
  • only the Pagan worldview is true
  • all Christians are the enemy (and OMG/WTF/BBQ the Burning Times are coming back soon)
  • nothing less than belief in many discrete gods counts as "proper" Paganism
  • the "proper" way to do Paganism is to devote yourself to a specific deity
    Pagans on a devotional path commit themselves to one deity or to one god and one goddess. (apparently)
  • all fluff-bunnies should be de-fluffed immediately and sent to bed without any supper
  • Paganism is a fertility religion, and "The God" and "The Goddess" are heterosexual
  • all ancient human remains whatsoever should be reburied
Of course, I sincerely hope that fundamentalist Pagans are a product of my fevered imagination, but I have come across some pretty mad stuff on mailing lists... or maybe that is because of the weird group dynamics on mailing lists.

7 comments:

pitch313 said...

It looks like I am not a fundamentalist Pagan.

Even though I do hold that a Neo-Pagan world view is probably better than many others.

Even though I acknowledge a metapantheon of deities.

Even though it's been my experience that a practitioner mostly works on a regular basis with a fairly small group of deities.

I'm not saying that Paganism was or is now a fertility religion.

The sexual orientations and preferences of the deities are not really we humans can limit.

Fluffy bunnies are Pagans just like the rest of us ever so dark ones. hee hee!

Human remains remain until they don't.

Mailing lists represent a cluster of realities separate from the ordinary reality in which we live. There are probably Pagan mailing list worlds where this list of fundamentalist Pagan traits is not nearly fundamental enough.

Yvonne said...

Dear Pitch

I don't think you are a fundamentalist Pagan.

Metapantheon? How do you mean?

I'm sure you're right about mailing lists; I think they have a very strange effect on group dynamics.

Actually, if we didn't think the Pagan worldview was the best one, we wouldn't be Pagans - but I like the Quaker thing about being open to new light, wherever it may come from.

pitch313 said...

Metapantheon.

If you're a Neo-Pagan, chances are that you work with deities or figures from more than one pantheon originating with a historical culture or a literary source--Greek, Celtic, Norse, Mayan, Iroquois, Sioux, Hindu, Polynesian, Tolkien, Lovecraft, etc.

But not with each and every deity or figure from each and every one of these pantheons.

Neo-Pagan practitioners (like me) collect together a small roster of individual deities and figures from several pantheons that we work with--our personal metapantheon.

I also use this term to mean the sum total of all the pantheons Neo-Pagans work with, a kind of super-pantheon.

Yvonne said...

What a useful term! Why not write a blogpost about that and post it to MetaPagan under theology?

I call my eclectic collection of gods and goddesses my household gods. But I like "metapantheon" :)

A further question - I'd be interested to know why you use the term NeoPagan rather than just Pagan.

pitch313 said...

Neo-Pagan.

I've read that there's a difference in usage between the USA and the UK. I'm out on the West Coast, and I've used Neo-Pagan for years and years. I probably got it from reading Isaac Bonewitz or Oberon Zell. I find it useful in distinguishing between the modern movemnt and other, historically and culturally older spiritualities (e.g. Hinduism).

PS How'd you guess that I'm doing a post on *metapantheon?*

Yvonne said...

Yes, I think there is a difference in usage between USA and UK. Over here, it's a bit of a pejorative term, used either by Christians or Polytheist Reconstructionists to emphasise a lack of continuity with past Paganism in Wicca & Druidry.

Pete Aldin said...

Reburying dead people sounds like fun! ;)

I love the human tendency toward orthodoxy, no matter the "faith" or worldview. We love to draw a box around us and class people as in or out, don't we? I mean, don't they?! Coz I don't do that....