Part of my happiness is practical. I have a nice-looking blog maintained by the Patheos tech wizards. My readership is three times what it was on Blogger, and while some of that growth would have happened anyway, much of it wouldn’t.
I enjoy being part of the Pagan Channel. While I knew several of the bloggers before coming to Patheos, I’ve gotten to know more, and quite a few are now friends I’ve met outside of our internet presence. We’re doing some good writing here, helping to present Paganism to newcomers (whether they feel a call to become Pagan or if they’re just curious) and helping to form and refine the beliefs and practices of a religion that for all its ancient roots is really quite new.
From a spiritual standpoint, I like being part of a multi-faith religious website. As I said about the National Day of Prayer, we best honor our religious diversity when we practice our own religions deeply while honoring the beliefs and practices of our friends and neighbors.
The vast majority of Patheos bloggers across all the channels are people who are practicing their religions deeply. If I want to know what Catholics think about something, I can browse the Catholic channel and find someone writing about most any current issue or event – not the official position of the Vatican, but what ordinary Catholics think. I can do the same thing with Buddhists and Muslims and atheists, as well as my fellow Pagans.
We live in the most religiously diverse culture in the history of the world. Ignoring the beliefs and practices of our neighbors is a recipe for needless strife. We don’t have to agree on matters of religion, but we do have to get along with each other.
So happy 5th anniversary Patheos, and thanks again for making a spot for me.