Posts tagged ‘Rhyd Wildermuth’

I Didn’t Become Pagan to Join a Doomsday Cult

I tried being a socialist in college, a Trotskyist to be specific. When I lobbied or voted or did anything that was part of “the System” they sneered at me and told me it wouldn’t work. And sometimes it didn’t. But sometimes it did. Progress was made. Sometimes it was lost. When I was working at Macy’s, I knew my co-workers weren’t wistfully waiting for the Glorious Proletarian Revolution. They were waiting for better wages, health care, paid sick time, child care. Fresh food that they could afford in their neighborhood. Sometimes, yes the anti-capitalists put on their suits and lobby for those things, or simply create grassroots solutions, like raising money to hand out food to people. Great awesome. But oftentimes they are too busy yelling that socialists in suits that have “sold out”.

Anarchists and Socialists are all about ideology and no practical solutions. I am not naive. I struggle what to do with myself in capitalism, and I rent out rooms to low-income people who often have to choose between repairing their car, or eating or paying the rent. I know we don’t live in a sustainable system. But all John Michael Greer, Rhyd  and others write is filled with despair, not practical solutions. Oh, maybe JMG has a bunch of suggestions about how to be a Perfect Eco-Homesteader Survivalist, I don’t know. But I’m trying to *recover from depression* (that was yes, somewhat related to trying to find a place in “The System”) but reading stuff that rages against it with no redemption- wow why don’t I just join a Doomsday cult? I also personally know both homeless people & wealthy people- so neither one is to me an Evil Other. Among Pagans, I have not found any help or support in finding employment. Just a bohemian version of a ghetto/victim mentality. Same with left-wing groups I have worked with. There’s always someone else with a better resume they can hire.

Whenever I see any Pagans managing to be financially successful, or get a building or anything off the ground, everyone else gets mad and tries to tear them down. Oh no, you’ve sold out to the patriarchy/Christians/capitalists etc. Well look, I am going to go out there and find decent work, and then I am going to help my fellow autistics and other disabled folk find it too. Because guess what? Being a eco-doom blogger does not pay us anything!  I might even commit the horrible selfish crime of having a baby! Because no true activist or spirit-worker could ever do that! Totally fine if you don’t want kids, but I feel like others think I’m selfish and don’t care about Mother Nature if I do. The Pagan movement will die from lack of support for its own and infighting. If anyone wants to join me, I’ll be with the Unitarians. Not that they are perfect but at least they aren’t a Doomsday cult. I am still a socialist at heart and I’m still a Pagan and a polytheist but I will be looking to work with people who will get things done in the near future- regardless of their ideology or religion or lack thereof. I’m not waiting for your damn revolution.

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April 16, 2015 at 11:41 pm 5 comments

Updates/Notes on the Traffic Light/Racism Post

After reading some community feedback on my previous post, both here and on Wild Hunt, I’ve made some changes to the post and here are some further comments and explanations.

*Faoladh/C.L. Vermeers correctly understood my intent that the presence of  “yellow signs” aren’t necessarily OMG that means group/person X is racist! Other people didn’t read my post as carefully or perhaps I was not clear enough. The entire point of this exercise was to avoid jumping to conclusions and badly supported accusations of racism and Neo-Nazism based on certain words, symbols and themes found in European culture and religious oriented individuals and groups.

*I decided to removed some references specific to Heathenry- mainly the folkish and tribalist labels- partly because I find these terms are not always used consistently by different individuals and groups. There may also be different connotations in different countries- some have noted that “tribalist” has been used as code for folkish, but I think this is mostly a U.S. American thing. I was conversing with a British Anglo-Saxon tribalist Heathen over on Wild Hunt and realized this. Another reason is that I want to emphasize that racism among Pagans is not just a “Heathen problem” it’s a problem in almost all sectors of Pagan and polytheist religions, just as with broader society. I am concerned also that unnecessary paranoia about Heathenry and Asatru may lead to other Pagans wanting to further dissociate themselves from them. I would like to see more understanding between Heathens, other polytheists and Pagans, Wiccans et al while at the same time recognizing the uniqueness and independence of these different religions. Personally I have been impressed by the positive interconnection between local Heathens/Asatru with the broader Pagan community in the Twin Cities area, though it seems in the past few years they have retreated somewhat from this involvement.

*I have been trying to “sniff out” the signs of racism in various people and organizations unfortunately sometimes after rather unpleasant run-ins with them online. Frankly, I’m not sure how much I trust organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center to investigate organizations without having a bias against Heathenry, Asatru or other European polytheist religions. I also don’t necessarily trust the claims that specific Pagans and Heathens about being anti-racist- I judge them by their actions. My journey as a progressive activist with a strong interest in my European heritage can be a lonely and delicately trod path. Many of my fellow leftists have a secular or sometimes Christian bias and sometimes a degree of suspicion towards European cultural revivalists, so I have to be careful how I present myself and my views. For one thing, I pretty much entirely avoid the subject of Israel/Palestinian conflict.

*This is not about obsessively enforcing “political correctness” whatever the hell that means- it’s a rather vague term that gets thrown around, usually by people who are mad at me for insisting that they treat others with respect and try to learn about people who are different from them. How dare I disrupt their blissful ignorance!

*There are various discussions about a type of philosophy called Radical Traditionalism, and authors that are said to support that philosophy, which is connected with the “New Right” that I made reference to- this tends to be more of a European thing, though this school of thought seems to be an influence in the U.S. and Canada as well. I don’t feel knowledgeable enough about this to comment on it too much. Some folks feel that certain Pagan bloggers/activists are unfairly targeting particular scholars and philosophers as fascists, and including the journal “TYR” in this. If Rhyd Wildermuth cares to discuss the “Rad Trads” on his blog or elsewhere, I would recommend checking out what he has to say. Though I don’t agree with everything he says politically, as a political scientist I respect the research and thought he puts into his analysis.

September 16, 2014 at 11:56 pm Leave a comment


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