What Atheopaganism Won’t Do for You

June 8, 2015 at 9:32 pm 2 comments

A lot of what Mark Green shares here also applies to polytheistic/animistic forms of Paganism. The Gods are not our cosmic babysitters. Sh*t will happen, in spite of all our best efforts to avoid it. (Frankly I think the My Little Jesus forms of Christianity misinterpret their theology as well!) The virtues of Heathenry & Druidry are social and relational in nature- rather than “Do This to Please God(s)”, it’s Do The Right Thing so you can help yourself, help take care of your friends/neighbors/family and keep human society from falling apart- and human society is viewed to some degree as a microcosm of the larger Universe, Maintaining the social order and one’s place in it is part of upholding the laws of the Universe- whether we refer to this as wyrd, orlog, Ma’at (Egyptian) etc. One can *loosely* identify those spiritual concepts with the laws of physics, nature and such- laws that the Gods and Spirits are subject to us just as much as humans are. That is a key difference with monotheism- in that scenario typically God is believed to be in control of everything, which creates a lot of theological, ethical and philosophical problems!

Atheopaganism

Recently, I have experienced some severe life challenges. A period of disability followed by a one of unemployment drained my savings away. I finally landed a good job with a great organization…only to be told, one paycheck in, by my landlord of 18 years that my beautiful home has been sold and I must move by Sept. 1.

Without any money. And 18 years’ worth of accumulated possessions.

I believe I will get through this, as people do. I have community and fundraising skills and ideas, and I am earning a salary now. Nemea and I will find another home, and survive.

But it occurs to me that members of other religions tend, in times like these, to speak of their religions as “a comfort to them”. In moments of grief, sorrow, adversity they can look to their beliefs for reassuring platitudes: God has a plan. Everything happens as it should…

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Entry filed under: Atheism, Ethics, Theology. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , .

Late May/Early June Personal Update ADF UMWRR – Part 1 General Thoughts

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Nicholas Haney  |  June 9, 2015 at 1:13 am

    I really like what you said about this article. As an animist I tell those that will listen that there are so many beings in the universe that could care less about human affairs, and at the same time there are also beings that care a great deal about our welfare (ancestors ect) and want to see us succeed. Also, there are plenty of beings that will bring about misery and suffering because it pleases them to do so. Bad things will happen, because the universe is social, dynamic and full of beings that cooperate, conflict, or even like to use humans as playthings.

    Reply
  • 2. ubenmaat  |  June 9, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    Yes! Exactly! The Gods aren’t your Mom, and they aren’t omnipotent. There are certain things they simply cannot do, as well as there being certain things they choose not to do. Bad luck or catastrophe is not the Gods “punishing” you, just as good luck is not necessarily the Gods blessing you.

    Reply

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