Tribalism: The Good, The Bad, and The Future

Samhain-2011

The issues of race and racism are being debated vigorously (though not always skillfully) on the Pagan internet.  As part of that debate, Morpheus Ravenna has been kicked off PaganSquare because she refused to back down from calling racism what it is.  Sam Webster has a good recap of the situation, and Morpheus’ follow-up is on her Shieldmaiden Blog.  As I said in my last post on this subject, this is a complicated issue that does not have easy answers.Today I want to address a small part of … [Read more...]

The Ethics of Seership

Oghams

Jason Pitzl-Waters at The Wild Hunt has a piece on the missing Ohio women who were rescued this week and the fact that noted psychic Sylvia Browne had told the mother of one of the missing women that her daughter was dead. Jason says: Were I in Browne’s position I would feel endlessly tormented over the people my predictions have hurt. I think incidents like this should call us collectively to examine how we practice, and in what contexts do we feel comfortable handing out predictions ... R … [Read more...]

Pagan Coming Out Day

PCOD

I hadn’t planned to write about Pagan Coming Out Day, which is today. I’m happy we have this day and I clearly see the importance of it, but I don’t have a lot of personal energy around it. I don’t hide who I am, but I don’t broadcast it, either... except in this strange on-line world where everyone broadcasts everything about themselves.I don’t like it when other people push their religion on me so I try not to push my religion on them. If you’re interested, just ask and I’ll tell you all yo … [Read more...]

Interfaith: Risks, Rewards, and Boundaries

beckett-header.jpg

I once heard a story* of an old rabbi who was preparing to attend an interfaith luncheon. His young assistant urged him not to go. “Rabbi, there are many closed-minded Christians in this group. They believe our religion is false and they will not treat you with the respect you deserve. Please don’t go.”The old rabbi smiled. “What can they do? They will try to convert me. They will fail. Then we’ll sit down, have lunch, and go about doing God’s work.”The questions of interfaith work and Pa … [Read more...]

Neither Within Nor Without

neither day nor night, neither land nor sea

When we talk about limits and boundaries we tend to think in terms of clear, bright lines. This is acceptable and that is not. This is right and that is wrong. This is sustainable and that is not. This dualistic thinking is a product of evolution, where our distant ancestors had to quickly figure out which animals they could eat and which animals would eat them. It continues in our modern culture: “if you’re not part of the solution you’re part of the problem” “if you’re not with us you’re agains … [Read more...]

Know Your Theological Boundaries

geese flying north 02.23.13

Theology is a speculative process. Pagan, Christian, Buddhist, or any other flavor – the study of God or Goddess or gods and goddesses is inherently subjective. Though we can and should approach this topic with all the reason and logic at our command, the kind of experimentation we find in other fields of study is rarely possible.Still, theology and similar practitioner-focused religious studies are helpful. They help us form a framework for our beliefs and practices. That framework in turn g … [Read more...]

Boundaries

a rather controversial boundary

Boundaries are a type of limit, but as I discussed in the last post, in practice they function very differently from other limits. While hard and soft limits are part of Natural reality and self-imposed limits appear to be so until we examine them, boundaries are entirely arbitrary human constructions. They draw lines between what is acceptable and what is not acceptable.Boundaries can be constructed by governments: national borders, speed limits, prohibitions against murder and rape, and … [Read more...]


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