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Occasionally I wandered in where I was not wanted and gave truthful answers.
Sometimes I even did it deliberately. A little disruption now can prevent disaster later.

Bestest

I learned to argue at the dinner table.

My oldest stepsib wasn’t around a lot. The next oldest was about ten years older than I. The next was seven years older. My stepdad was the worst of the lot. We could and did argue about almost anything. See, the fun wasn’t winning so much as it was arguing. But even my stepdad knew to stay away from politics and religion.

My mom didn’t participate. But she did teach me about logic and sources. So it didn’t take me very long to learn to hold my own, despite my age.

Before I entered seminary I knew some of the weaknesses of the Bible. You see, some of the family was very evangelical Christian. Very in-your-face my-way-or-else type. So I’d been exposed to some of the loudest Christianity, and I knew the topics they avoided talking about. In seminary, sometimes we’d talk among ourselves about our doubts and fears.

I wasn’t a good fit in seminary. I didn’t understand it at the time, but my perception of the Divine kept me from moving along that path. The road was to Memphis and I had to go to Chicago.

Now politics I understood. I hooked up with a medium sized company and got very good and the behind the scenes games. Who could we make look bad? Without getting caught? What favors could we collect?

Fast forward a few years. I had accepted myself as Pagan, and I looked around. This was before the incident I call
NeoWayland and the Wiccan Crusaders, but it was already obvious that the thing that some pagans did was Christian bash. And oh we were thought we were hot stuff. We knew the best arguments. Why was the Divine plural in some parts of the Old Testament? Why did Christians insist it was one book when there were four contradictory creation myths? And so on.

Then I got into an argument with the Wiccan Crusaders and that went on for a few years.

I’ve some issues as I written before. I’m small “L” libertarian, and matters of religion and faith aren’t exactly popular in those groups. I’m pagan, and most pagans believe that pagans should be progressive. And for conservatives, the only religion accepted is Judeo-Christian. Well, actually Christianity, but the go thorough the motions. ALL these groups can be extremely intolerant of folks who do not meet their expectations.

I ran out of the emotional energy to fight all these battles at the same time. And that is when I discovered some things. First, my faith is between me and the Divine. Second, I don’t have to be the Best, I just have to keep standing. Third, I didn’t have to pick up any of the insults or threats that got thrown in my direction, those were meant to weaken me. Fourth, I needed to fight for someone else.

It’s what I call “
the reluctant advocate thing,” and it’s been shaping my arguments for a long time now. I speak for those who aren’t there to speak for themselves. I won’t pretend it’s a “higher calling.” It’s a way for me to focus my energy and still enjoy the arguments.

I’m not the Bestest, I don’t have to be anymore.

I’m just really really good.

The amazing part is that the rules are simple. I don’t do it to show how bad the arguments are. I do it when they’ve crossed the line and they know it and they are feeling just a tiny bit guilty about it. They know they’d never do it face to face. They don’t want to have their attacks questioned.

So I wander the web and I wait for someone to make themselves fair game.

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A narrow slice of life, but now and again pondering American neopaganism, modern adult pagans & the World.

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