"And You, Who Would Deny My Name"

"Just keep it under your hat," I said. "I don't care if you two know, but don't let it go any further than that."

"Don't worry," said Mike. "I won't tell anyone."

It was less than a minute later when Larry, one of the owners of the company, came into the office looking for Mike to sign something. Before he could say anything, Mike blurted out, "E-Scott totally worships Thor." (He did apologize for this later.)

Larry raised an eyebrow. "That true, Eric?"

The idea that one's paganism can be—or should be—public knowledge is still a difficult proposition; it's probably easier now than it was when my parents first learned about the religion, but still, people continue to stay in the broom closet for good reasons. Paganism still carries danger with it: fear of alienation from one's family, fear of retaliation at work or school, fear of intolerance and misunderstanding from mainstream society. As nice as it sounds to say that one should be open and proud of his faith, the real world just isn't that easy. Maybe it would be better for the community if we all spoke up, but we can't live as communities, only as individuals within them.

I rolled my eyes at Mike and turned back to my computer. "No, Larry, it's not true," I lied. "Just another one of our pranks."

6/29/2011 4:00:00 AM