The center cannot hold: UPG as a centrifugal force

Mormon pioneers

Personal gnosis is always potentially threatening to community. In order for a community like Paganism to survive, it must find a way to integrate personal gnosis with the communal identity. [Read more...]

Straight talk about the Pagan identity crisis

You have got to check out B.T. Newberg’s newest post at Pagan Naturally, “The ‘Pagan’ question: Beyond belief-blindness“.  He writes about the chronic debate about the meaning of Pagan, and states “in no uncertain terms what’s really going on: It’s about kicking people out” (emphasis added).  I think he’s right.  B.T. goes on to reveal [Read More...]

Is there a “disconnect” between Pagan blogosphere the Pagan community?

About a month ago, Jason Mankey wondered whether the controversies in the Pagan blogosphere have anything to do with Paganism “closer to home” in a post entitled, “Outside Looking In (or Is Anybody Really Listening?)”.  Due to the holidays and family crises, I haven’t gotten around to discussing it.  But since it hits close to [Read More...]

The questions that led me to Neopaganism

When I left the Mormon church, I felt a strong need to justify myself.  A Mormon can request to have their name removed from the church records by putting the request in writing.  You don’t have to state your reason, but I wanted to, so I wrote a lengthy letter (10 pages) itemizing my issues.  [Read More...]

Embarrassment and the twin threats to Paganism: Shallowness of the mind and of the heart

In my last post, I wrote about “Being Ashamed by Paganism” (which was really about “embarrassment” not “shame”).  For me, the most interesting and challenging response came from Alison Leigh Lilly, who suggested that embarrassment can be “an invitation to growth”.  Alison discusses her own experience of embarrassment (at poorly executed ritual) and being the [Read More...]

Being Embarrassed by Paganism

Years ago, when I was deciding whether to leave the Mormon church, one of the recurring thoughts I had was that, by continuing to associate with the Mormon church, I was (mis-)representing to the world that I shared all the same beliefs and the same ordering of values as the Mormon church.  I felt that, [Read More...]


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