Vision of a Pagan World

Small shifts add up to giant changes. A minority religion can become an axis of culture. If the religion is as awesome as Vodou or Paganism, this is a win for both the religion and the society it's part of.

The catch: the religion must speak to people.

In my previous article I asked how Paganism can become a world religion. How can it distill a message that speaks to people? The comments and discussion expressed a horror at the very idea. We don't want to convert people! We refuse to be the next wave of fundamentalists! Paganism is not, I was told, about marketing Paganism.

Fair point.

But having a clear message doesn't need to entail any of those things. Vodou will not try to convert you. Never has, likely never will. But Vodou has a clear, simple message: dance with us. There's a hidden world and it's coming to the party. Sing, dance, touch the divine; you will become a believer.

That's seductive.

I present my vision of a Pagan world for one reason, to show what it can be like, to show the benefits that can come from a clear message, a shared focus. Those benefits have little to do with conversion and everything to do with a cultural shift that celebrates, rather than demonizes, the rich life of myth and ritual that Pagans bring to the table.

As you reach the end of this article, my challenge to you is this: putting aside the question of proselytizing, which is not the idea here, what is Paganism's message?

If you distilled everything you love about Paganism—everything about it that grips you—into a single sentence, what would it be?

8/1/2012 4:00:00 AM