Project Pagan Enough

March 4, 2015 at 1:52 am 2 comments

Various places, I see people who are new to Paganism, particularly after they’ve been studying it awhile and then actually meet other Pagans ask, “To be Pagan do I have to be (identity x) dress this way, listen to this music?” While there are various hobbies, types of fashion and political opinions that are popular among many Pagans that does not mean you need to participate. You do not need to buy the “Pagan Lifestyle Combo Pack”! Now, as your spiritual path develops, you might end up questioning some types of mainstream values and social norms, or for that matter, norms and values you find among Pagans! That’s a natural part of spiritual growth.

I came across something called Project Pagan Enough a while ago, ironically from someone who was complaining that it would lead to more watering down of the definition of “Pagan”. At this point, I think a much bigger threat to our communities is all the division and in-fighting. Yes, it’s very tricky to define “Pagan”, and using more specific labels is often a better idea, and people identify with them more. But we are all such small minorities, that sometimes we do need a broader concept to band together, especially when dealing with institutions like the jail/prison system and the military. A Discordian parent faced with losing their kids in a custody dispute, a Heathen who loses their job, and a Gardnerian witch who is outed in a political race might not seem to have much in common, but they will not get very much help if they insist on only sticking with people like themselves.

Personally, I’ve had my own ups and downs with my local Pagan community, but while Druid groups came and went- or were started in places I couldn’t get access to by bus, Pagan Pride, Paganicon and the Covenant of the Goddess Northern Dawn Chapter were still there. I’ve never felt excluded for not being Wiccan, polyamorous, a cat-owner, or whatever else some may think is “required”. I know some polytheists, and various other types of people have felt excluded in their communities, and that’s wrong. I won’t deny other people’s experiences, I am just sharing my own.

  1. You are Pagan Enough, because you try fervently to explore what it means to be pagan and apply it to your life, despite your physical appearance, personal tastes, level of experience, or other factor that others might use to say you are not pagan.
  2. You recognize others are Pagan Enough despite how they may look, act, or believe, as long as that person feels they are fervently seeking the divine on a pagan path.
  3. You attempt to debate those that have opposing viewpoints, learning from one another despite how passionate the debate becomes, instead of simply writing others off for not being up to your standard of ‘pagan’.
  4. You welcome, befriend, and encourage others in the pagan community despite their physical appearance, level of experience, age, or other physical or superficial characteristic.
  5. You promise to treat members of other religions and spiritual paths with equality, fairness, and grace, setting a good example for the Pagan community both in and out of the community, not judging the individuals based on fringe members of their same faith.

Project Pagan Enough

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Entry filed under: Pagan Communities. Tags: , , , .

What I’ve Been Doing Lately A Couple Blog-Round-tables

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. gingertee407  |  March 23, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    For me, it’s all about the politics. If you’re not “more liberal than thou” then you’re not a “real pagan.” And the politics have become more of a litmus test for “true paganism” than has anything spiritual, and that to me is ridiculous and completely disturbing.

    I remember when Dan O’Halloran in NY ran for city council – as a REPUBLICAN. Many people in the pagan world couldn’t figure out how a Tyrsman, as he is, could possibly be a Republican. Hell, I think some folks can’t figure out things like, why a pagan would wear a suit and tie, or why a pagan woman would have short hair.

    There’s a LOT of ridiculous expectations in the pagan world, I’ve found. A lot of “you’re not orthodox enough” going on.

    Reply
  • 2. caelesti  |  March 24, 2015 at 3:52 am

    I think it’s good to think about how your spiritual values relate to your political views, but even people from the same tradition can interpret the same principles differently. Even when I do social justice-y projects with other Pagans or UUs, I don’t expect all Pagans or all UUs to subscribe to the same political dogma! Asatruar/Heathens tend to be more conservative politically (esp. libertarian) in the U.S. so that didn’t surprise me.

    Reply

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