Leaving the scene

Why are some pagans pulling back?

This article has been making the rounds. I think it is well worth reading. Juliaki was the first one that I saw point it out, but I've also seen it on Red Raven's Roost and Sunfell's Earth Walk. I've also seen it credited and non-credited on four mailing lists so far.

I'm honest enough to admit that there are times I am one of the "walking wounded" myself. It is one of the things I am working on, but yes, it does come up and it messes with my relationships big time.

Now, with that being said, there are things in the "pagan scene" today that disturb me. Thirteen year old self-proclaimed High Priestesses who only started "studying" Wicca six months ago are pretty high on my list. So are those who claim that "true pagans" have to have a certain political orientation. Then there are those who I judge are in it more for the shock value and attention than any real commitment to faith. And then there are the ones who are determined to start a war with every Christian on the planet.

Then there are the ones who are out to either destroy or dominate because they don't see any other way. There are specific pagan leaders (who I won't mention by name) who have written extensively about the dualism present in the extreme religious right and yet fail to see the same symptoms in their own politics.

But Lord and Lady help you if you dare DISCRIMINATE against any of these. Never mind that the people I've described discriminate against anyone who doesn't give them exactly what they want. Paganism is supposed to be open and accepting, and therefore you do not deserve to be a pagan unless you accept these people at their word without reservation. So yes, there are times when I know exactly why some pagans (who have long since earned the title and the respect) want a lower profile.

Before paganism went "mainstream," this happened too, just not as many people noticed. Nor is it limited to paganism, try googling "Christian burnout."

Personally, I do feel it is a mistake. But at the same time, I can understand why someone would pull back from being lumped in the same category the glory hounds, walking wounded, and fluffies. Maybe it is just that the mystery part of paganism is reasserting itself.

Posted: Thu - August 4, 2005 at 07:01 PM
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