Sunday, June 21, 2009

Edit to defining Paganism

In my previous post I attempted to define Paganism. It turns out that there's one key thing I forgot! So I'll recap what I said before, and add in what I'd forgotten as number seven.

1) We don't worship Satan. We don't even believe in the guy. If someone believes in Satan, then that's fine, but they aren't Pagan. This is one of those hard and fast rules I mentioned. Yes, some of our deities (Loki from Norse mythology, and Seth from Egyptian mythology, to name just two) can be unbelievably nasty, but they arenot Satan.

2) Some people are under the impression that a hard and fast rule to being Pagan is that you have to follow a nature centered path. Guess what? That's just not true. I think it's safe to say that all of us hold the Earth sacred, but it isn't the center of every one's universe.

3) Pagans will not try to convert you to Paganism. Ok, so I know there are a few exceptions, but they are few and far between. We also tend to get ticked off at people trying to save our souls.

4) We're usually polytheistic, but there are also people who are duo-theists, monotheistic, and even people who regard deities as symbols and not actual beings. But we're mostly polytheistic.

5) Our Sabbats (holy days) follow the turning of the seasons.

6) Paganism is not one religion. The term "Paganism" is an umbrella term that covers many many religions and spiritualities, some of which are so different they don't seem to have much in common.

7) A Pagan is someone who is not Muslim, Jewish, or Christian. That is not to say that anyone who is not of one of the Abrahamic faiths is automatically Pagan, though. Also, I know some Pagans who blend a Pagan religion with Christianity.

Confused yet? I thought so. This is why I pointedly avoided this topic until the month was more than halfway over.

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