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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in activism

Every religious tradition stands in some tension with its society, legitimizing some things in terms of a larger eternal context, but in the process challenging others, sometimes deeply.  As NeoPagan religions increase in America this same pattern is developing. This essay explores how the logic of Pagan religion leads us to question the legitimacy of some important contemporary institutions, particularly the joint stock corporation, and with this questioning, the way our society views the world. 

More deeply than most religions, NeoPagans legitimize and honor the goodness of this world, the sacred immanence that shines through all things.  Consequently, from a Pagan perspective living well in our world requires observing appropriate ethical and moral relationships.  This insight cannot help but lead us to criticize attitudes treating this world as noting but a means for human ends.

Our society’s institutional and legal core views the world as without value beyond its use to us.  A mountain or forest has no more intrinsic value than a crumpled wad of paper.  Our economic system in particular is only able to relate to the world on these terms. Its signature institution, the joint stock corporation, is created so treat everything it encounters as either a resource for attaining its goal of making money, a threat to that goal, or irrelevant. By understanding what is defective about a corporation we can better appreciate what Pagan insights add to our world.

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  • Henry Buchy
    Henry Buchy says #
    'Tapa is innocent, study is harmless, the ordinance of the Vedas prescribed for all the tribes are harmless, the acquisition of we
  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Since I did not use the term 'socialist' and indeed included a strong criticism of sate socialism, I see your ability to read and
  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    No, pagan is not a socialist political agenda no matter how many silly assertions you make about corporations and economics.
Sneak Peak!  Goddess Calling...Inspirational Messages & Meditations of Sacred Feminine Liberation Thealogy....Coming in April!

 There was a time long ago when Christianity was the liberation theology of our time - but today many realize the ideals of the Sacred Feminine are what we need for a sustainable future, for freedom, justice, women's rights and equality.

Here's a sneak peak about what others are saying about Goddess Calling:  Inspirational Messages and Meditations of Sacred Feminine Liberation Thealogy.....Coming in April!
Pre-order your copy on Amazon now!

 

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  • Lia Hunter
    Lia Hunter says #
    How exciting! This sounds made for me!
  • Karen Tate
    Karen Tate says #
    Hello Caity, Yes, the book will be available in e-book. Please help me spread the word! Thanks for your interest
  • Caity
    Caity says #
    Will this also be available on Kindle?

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
New Years Resolutions

I hope that 2014 finds you and your loved ones well. I don't usually post New Years' resolutions because I find them silly, but to my surprise, this year I actually have one. I'm cutting as much plastic use out of my life as I can. I live in Florida, as y'all know, and it's a peninsula, so even inland, you're never really far from the ocean. And my vaettir care about what goes on there; Florida has been above and under water off and on over time as glaciers have risen and receded. I have white Florida beach sand in my yard, even this far inland. Plastics are polluting our oceans and killing animals.

When you watch clips like this, you can get overwhelmed by it all. The Pacific Garbage Patch is HUGE - what can any one of us do? Well, after some reflection, I've decided that I know what I can do. I can crochet. I'm making bags to give to friends and loved ones - I love how pretty and stylish the original pattern is, but it calls for a CD to be placed in the bottom, which I'm not going to do, because I'm going to mod it so that it can be folded into itself and tucked inside a purse or other carry-all for convenience. Most people I know have reusable bags but they leave them at home or in the car. Another thing I'm going to do is cut down on plastic bottle use. In the Florida heat, damn near everyone buys a cold bottled beverage, but those bottles are mostly plastic, and many are not recycled, and indeed many of them are dangerous to reuse. A friend of mine suggested trying a Brita Bottle as a reusable water bottle, because even though it's plastic, one plastic container that cleans water is better than many throwaway ones. I'm considering that just because I've tried aluminum bottles in the past and I don't have good luck with them; they have no real insulation and your water goes from cool to outside air temperature in no time flat. And also, no filtration. I'm open to suggestions, and will be experimenting, but anything has to be better than tossing more and more plastic bottles into the ocean.

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  • Liza
    Liza says #
    This is one of the bottles I use. Easy to clean, they'll replace parts if needed... and insulated. While I don't live in 80bazill

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

 

First, allow me to apologize for being out of the loop for about a month. Between Thanksgiving, holiday shopping, and coming down with some mutant offspring of the bubonic plague, writing anything of merit has been difficult. Second, allow me to also apologize for not having any funny memes in this post; I'm still recovering from the cold and I don't feel particularly equipped for humor.  Also, this topic is serious enough that I fear humor would detract from it.  Now, with that out of the way, let's move right along.

On December 21st, Heathens United Against Racism will be holding an international event. Heathens, Asatruar, and Norse Polytheists across the world will be raising scorn poles, or Nidstang, against the undesired racialization and radicalization of our religious paths by extremists. Months ago, the founder of that group, (Ryan Smith) asked if some of the membership would be willing to write anything to spread the message. I was eager to assist, but found myself hard pressed to write something I was satisfied with. After some work and soul searching*, I came up with the following thoughts.

Let's cut right to the chase; the racialist minority in Asatru and Heathenry is a group of disturbed people. There is no other way that I can phrase it, and I do not consider such language inflammatory or inaccurate. There is nothing within the history and anthropology of the cultures that first honored the Norse gods which supports a ethnic supremacy mindset. Tellingly, it also possesses no representation within the myths and tales that represent our religious heritage. With these things in mind, it becomes clear what the catalyst for such a philosophy truly is; fearful and/or angry people projecting their own hatred and biases onto a religion in order to give them the pretension of legitimacy. It a tactic that is ages old, and one which causes no lack of frustration and anger.

It is easy to hate such groups. Actually doing it, however, is a trap. In fact, it's the same trap they've fallen into themselves. I'm not going to go forth and do a stupid thing, simply because my reasons have better intentions. Their hate speech is a language of madness. Within that madness, however, is the best solution they think they have to a problem they cannot properly define. They are dangerous people to be sure, but they are also tragic.

I'd say that the actions of many who think like them come from a need to be the victim, and to not be the persecutor. A need to say, “No, really...everything I do isn't related to some irrational fear that equality will lead to me being treated as some of my ancestors may have once treated others! It's a war, and if I don't fight it the white race will be unable to prosper because of....reasons”.  A need to find a way to believe that such tripe is actually a valid concern. To say otherwise, in their mind, is to promote white guilt.

Allow me to address that.  You see, I'm not a land owner in the pre-civil war South. Further, I'm not a member of the Nationalsozialismus in Holocaust Germany. I didn't hold power in Apartheid era South Africa, nor did I lead Aboriginal Americans to their deaths along the trail of tears. I don't bear shame or guilt for these actions, because I didn't do them. When someone goes to great lengths to legitimize such terrible deeds, they do not appear as men and women who are attempting to triumphantly repeal the march of “Liberal Revisionism” (or whatever the kids are calling it these day); they look like someone who is terrified of being connected to the bad guys. It looks like fear and shame, turned into hate.

So, to such people, I offer a small prayer:


To those who would stand with the Aesir and Vanir,
Yet have lost themselves between Midgard and Ginnungap
Between Niflheim and Muspelheim.
Between Courage and Cowardice
I ask the Gods we mutually stand with,
To stand by you and guard your way home.

When you first stand before the Bifrost,
May Heimdall help you cross and guard you from distractions.

When you stand within the Asgard,
May Thor show you true strength and courage.

When you think upon your past,
May Loki leave your mind unclouded by pretty lies

When you find your heart and head,
May Eir help them heal and grow strong

When you cross into the Gladsheim,
May Frigg smile at your passing and embrace you as her own.
And May Odin show you the true wisdom of the nine realms.

And when you pass some day,
As both cattle and kinsmen are wont to do,
May Hel give you the peace of your greatest moments,
And let time and eternity wash away the worst.

I hail the Gods you worship.
I hail your ancestors.
May it be that someday I can hail you as well.

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Here in the Deep South, it's been a rough few months for women's health. The passage of a draconian anti-abortion law -- despite the courageous efforts of Texas State Senator Wendy Davis and her allies -- has led to the closing of several women's health clinics, and will lead to the closing of many more. In Arkansas, one of the most restrictive abortion bills in the country was signed over the summer, banning the procedure in most instances later than 6 weeks. At no other time in American history since Roe v. Wade have women's reproductive rights been so under attack.

A large portion of the work I do as a Feminist Witch centers on securing social justice for women, including the right to bodily autonomy and self-determination. I see my pro-choice politics as a logical extension of my spirituality. Part of what draws me to Feminist Craft is the idea of empowerment through ritual and magick, and my feminist politics hold that we can never be truly empowered until we have control over our fertility -- from having the ability to prevent or terminate a pregnancy, up to and including the ability to make our own choices about how, when and whether we will birth and raise children. Although I am committedly child-free, I am passionate about reproductive justice for all -- not just choice but justice in terms of access to resources that allow us to make choices.

October marks an annual campaign called 40 Days of Prayer to End Abortion, led by many conservative Christian groups. These groups hold prayer circles in their homes and outside women's health clinics and pray for an end to abortion. Pro-choice Christian groups have formed a counter campaign, 40 Days of Prayer to Keep Abortion Legal. Given the number of pro-choice Pagans out there, I have launched my own event this year: 40 Days of Ritual to Keep Abortion Legal.

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  • Susan Harper
    Susan Harper says #
    Thank you, Paola. Jia, I think that's a question that each person who considers terminating a pregnancy has to consider for thems
  • Paola Suarez
    Paola Suarez says #
    Since it seems that Jia has confused us when commenting I wanted to take a moment to applaud your response Susan. It's sad to me t
  • Paola Suarez
    Paola Suarez says #
    I support your work! I have liked your page as my own page "Goddess Spiral Health Coaching" and also made a post today to share ab

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
It's Not What You Think

I'm sure many of you have heard or read something about at least one Facebook page with a title which many witches are finding offensive. I'm not going to give you access to them from this blog nor will I mention them directly.  The quick fervor whipped up around the name of this page, led me to all kinds of questions, and a few extremely important answers...and some perspective. I'd like to share what I've learned, hopefully it can move all of us forward on this issue.

Facebook doesn't get to decide what hate speech is, the law does.

When I reported the page for 'hate speech', as so many others had done, I was also told in a very fast reply, by an automated system on Facebook, that the page wasn't 'hate speech', and so it wouldn't be removed. How could that be? The title sure looked hateful to me!

Who is Facebook?

Since I felt that Facebook was being negligent, I figured the next step was to report Facebook to someone, but who? A state attorney's general office? The USDOJ? I needed to do some more book work to know. As it turns out, Facebook was originally incorporated in Florida, but that was later moved to Delaware, a popular state for incorporation because of favorable tax laws.

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  • Terence P Ward
    Terence P Ward says #
    I tend to err on the side of giving idiots enough rope to hang themselves with, particularly given the free-speech tenets here in
  • Celestine Angel
    Celestine Angel says #
    I disagree that your first reaction was over-blown. See, the thing is, with that page being based, as much as anyone could discern
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Cogent, dispassionate, comprehensive. I couldn't have said this better myself. Hear, hear!
Before Gordon Gekko There Was Star Trek

Before Ayn Rand became a household name or Michael Douglas as Gordon Gekko in the movie, Wall Street, captivated the masses with his "greed is good" ideals, a license to callously cheat and exploit, we believed in the progressive values of Star Trek.  Remember, in Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan (1982) when Spock's dying words to Kirk were "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few."  Or a few years later, in Star Trek: First Contact (1996) Picard explains the world view of the future when he says "The acquisition of wealth is no longer the driving force in our lives.  We work to better ourselves and the rest of humanity." In fact, Star Trek's mission was one of exploration and humanitarianism rather than the Right Wing rejection of science or the Ayn Rand values to spurn collectivism and altruism.

That said, I wonder how many have considered how much more Trekkies and Goddess Advocates have in common?  Let's see.

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  • G. B. Harte
    G. B. Harte says #
    Resistance is Not Futile. Resistance to the eternal spiritual 'darkness' is most decidedly not futile. We - as a lifeform & specie

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs
Embracing The Other

I was recently interviewed on a radio program and the host asked me if I might name one way my mother influenced my life.  I immediately knew the answer to her question.  Evelyn, my mother, taught me to fight for the under-dog.  She never verbalized it, but I think she felt like an under-dog.  She grew up in Louisiana in the 1940's.  It was a time when women had little choice about the direction their life would take.  She had no protections like Roe v Wade.  Her mother was a janitor and education for women was not a priority.  Her world view consisted of getting married, keeping a roof over her head and her kids fed.  I can still remember her and my step-father, too poor for a decent meal because selling vacuum cleaners door to door was not putting food on the table, eating corn chips with some cheese spread for dinner.  Sometimes my breakfast cereal did not come with milk, but water to moisten it.  Ham was out of the question and I came to love bologna sandwiches, especially if I had potato chips to slap between the slices of bread instead of lettuce. 


Never having taken a class in Women’s Studies and a product of the conservative South, I don’t think Evelyn can name the cause for her circumstances.  I can still hear her misplaced loyalty to her Southern roots as my step-father, a northerner from Iowa,  would tell her of the rampant ignorance and racism in the South.  Sexism never came up, however.  Afterall, women just had their role in society.  Evelyn’s life path was not in question - it was normal for the times, but I doubt she was happy.  I wonder if she even felt happiness was something she could hope for.  I got the feeling she was happy surviving.   I wonder how her life would have been different if she had the option to finish high school and go on to college or if she could make enough money not to have to get married or fulfill society’s expectations that women have children.  So, yes, Evelyn instilled in me to fight for the under-dog, probably because she felt there was no one fighting for her. 

She encouraged me to reach out to the lonely kids on the playground who were rejected by the popular kids.  We shared what little we had with neighbors who had less than us.  She told me to go out and get what I wanted in life because it would not come “knocking on my door.”  She tried her best with what she had to work with, which wasn’t much materially or education-wise, but she had compassion and empathy, which I believe, made her very rich.

So it’s no surprise, today I consider myself a social justice advocate.  I fight for “THE OTHER” because today, so many more of us are THE OTHER.  We are the ones with a boot on our neck. The boot of white, male, fundamentalist Christian men and their female counterparts who benefit from the oppression of others.  Yes, this is the root of so much of the oppression and denigration and it’s not just oppression from the elites.  Often it’s poor, white, male, fundamentalist Christian men and their female counterparts who play their part in this patriarchal scheme. 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

The other day I was in my car sitting at a red light. In front of me was a large vehicle with a pentacle sticker on it. The license plate had the word "hex" in it. This indicated the occupant, or at least the owner of the vehicle, as Pagan. I sat behind this vehicle and shook my head. A large, gas guzzling vehicle with Pagan stickers on it. I wondered if the occupant noticed the irony. Then, just as the light turned red, the occupant tossed a cigarette out the window and continued on her merry way. Had the light still been red, I would've jumped out of my ten year old econo car, picked up the discarded butt, handed it back to her while saying "excuse me! You dropped this!"

Pagans who participate in the destruction of Mother Earth through seemingly small acts like throwing used cigarette butts on the ground most certainly participate in the large scale destruction of our planet through tar sands and other human-made environmental catastrophes. This was the basis for my inaugural post, A Call to Action I was asked in the comments what resisting Keystone XL has to do with Paganism. My response: everything.

This is not the first time I've lamented about the lack of large scale participation by Pagans in the movement against climate change. Obviously the idea of living lightly on Mother Earth has not occurred to all Pagans. When calls have been made to step up and practice treading lightly the responses have been varied: from outright vitriol to pleasure the Pagan community is taking notice.

There are lots of environmental issues Pagans can involve themselves in: tarsands, mountaintop removal, unsustainable hydro, protection of crops amongst a myriad of others.

Jason Pitzl-Waters asked "But how far are Pagans, collectively, willing to go in defense of an Earth they call sacred?" It seems to me not very far. If Pagans can't make refrain from throwing cigarette butts out of their SUVs, I can't imaging them willing to risk arrest to prevent coal from mountain top removal in Appalachia being delivered to a coal fire plant in southern New England.

The call to action across the planet has been heard by many Christian sects. Already we are hearing about churches who are choosing to divest from fossil fuels. Yet I have not heard such a call from large Pagan worship centers such as Circle Sanctuary or Temple of Witchcraft or even the Reclaiming leadership. Small groups and covens have also remained silent. I find this terribly distressing.

Not all Pagans are Earth worshipers. So even if you do not worship the earth as a deity worship her as the only place we have to live: there is no planet B.  

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  • Christa Landon
    Christa Landon says #
    THANK YOU! Perhaps most Pagans don't directly own stock in energy companies, etc., but certainly we all consume! As Unitarian Un

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Across the Midwest and New England a fight has been brewing between landowners and the Canadian corporation Enbridge. The fight centers on two tarsands pipeline crisscrossing the continent: Keystone XL in the Midwest and Trailbreaker/Line 9 in the Northeast.  Enbridge, the owner of the pipeline wants to move tarsands, the most toxic and corrosive oil product on this planet, from Alberta, Canada to the sea. In order to do so, the pipelines will bisect the breath of the United States from Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico and to the Gulf of Maine. Leaks will happen in New England and in the Midwest and will impact all of the nation.

b2ap3_thumbnail_KeystonePipeline_map.jpg

(Image source: http://blogs.nicholas.duke.edu/thegreengrok/keystonexl/)


Thousands of people nationwide have been on the forefront of this fight. Thousands more have joined the resistance from Canada. The Canadian insurgence comes from the movement Idle No More (#IdleNoMore) in which many of the indigenous peoples of Canada have reached their breaking point and are now standing up to the Canadian government saying they will no longer permit Mother Earth to be destroyed for corporate profits. Flashmobs have been spotted all over the US and Canada. Drums are drummed, songs sung, hands held as groups of people, normally disconnected from one another, come together in moments of peace and unity in resistance to the global devastation tarsands causes.

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Howdy, Shawn -- I used to make the same assumptions as you, and was more than happy to do so. (I'm in that "progressive, pro-LGBST
  • Shawn Sanford Beck
    Shawn Sanford Beck says #
    Hi Joseph (and Anne), Thanks for the responses, and sorry for the snarkiness of the original posting. As a Sophian Christian (and
  • Joseph Bloch
    Joseph Bloch says #
    Shawn: It's not "taking over" something to ask that an overtly political post have some relevance to religion, when posted on a re

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Remember that movie Practical Magic? Like many Hollywood movies it features a scene that is key to any witch-themed movie- the inevitable persecution. In a flash back to their youth the two main characters of Practical Magic remember children throwing rocks at them screaming, ‘witch’. It looks almost innocent and most Pagans watching it will shake their heads with a light ‘tsk, tsk’; some may even express a passing sentiment of gratitude that the ‘Burning Times’ are in the past where they belong. To that I have to shake my head and exclaim ‘tsk, tsk- don’t you know they still go on?

 
Witch-hunts may be a relic of the past in Europe and North America, but in African countries they are starting to gain momentum. When Christian missionaries first reached Africa’s shores and started to preach to the indigenous peoples from their own theological perspectives, they labelled indigenous magical practices as ‘witchcraft’ and the practitioners ‘witches’. And over the centuries those words have been incorporated into indigenous languages just as Christian beliefs have mingled with indigenous religious beliefs to create religions that both venerate Christ and maintain a deep respect for ancestral spirits; and keep alive a belief in magic.
 
In the townships and rural villages of South Africa, a whisper of ‘witch’ can incite an entire community to lash out at a family or an individual, with the victims of false accusations being stabbed, stoned, hacked or burnt to death. The victims of false accusation are usually elderly women, but the path to the original victim is all too often littered with the bodies of more victims- children; some as young as a few months old. Lives violently snuffed out because of jealousy and fear.
 
However the inhumanity doesn’t end there. There are survivors of witch-hunts; those who manage to survive the assault or flee in time. Others survive stoning or burning by being expelled from their homes and communities by community leaders, traditional leaders and traditional healers, after being tried in traditional courts and found ‘guilty’ through divination. Those who have been expelled find themselves refugees in witch camps; their plight and very refugee status blatantly ignored by the South African government.
 
But why should this concern you, you may wonder. The accused are not even witches, let alone Pagans, so there is no religious discrimination you possibly could relate to; so why should Pagans of all people be standing up for the victims of witch-hunts?
 
Here in South Africa we have a saying: “Ugogo wami, ugogo wakho nawe” [My grandmother is your grandmother]. Within Paganism there is the predominant belief that we are all connected; we are all woven with the same, single thread of life and by it, bound together. By that regard, atrocities happening to others, no matter how far away, should be spoken out against.
 
The victims of witch-hunts, the elderly and the young who have violently lost their lives to fear and jealousy, deserve to have their deaths recognized and justice served to the murderers. The victims of witch-hunts who survive deserve to be treated with dignity and not live their lives in shame, fear and guilt, away from their homes and families. All victims of witch-hunts deserve to have their plight recognized by government, and government institutions and representatives have a responsibility to curb witch-hunts. At its very core, witch-hunts are not about religious discrimination, they are about the violation of basic human rights.
 

Are you moved to help? Join the South African Pagan Rights Alliance in their annual 30 days of Advocacy against Witch-Hunts Campaign- talk about witch-hunts, speak out against witch-hunts and sign the petition. Together we can help put an end to witch-hunts not just in South Africa, but globally.

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  • Bronwyn Katzke
    Bronwyn Katzke says #
    You are right, it is a phenomenon found in numerous countries; a fact I should have added but seeing as I live in SA my focus shif
  • Your Humble Correspondent
    Your Humble Correspondent says #
    Unfortunately this is a phenomenon not limited to Africa. We see the same sort of thing in the Middle East, India, and Indonesia.

My friend Peter Dybing has posted this blog, "Killing the Big Name Pagans," at Pagan in Paradise.  I tend to get more inspired when writing something responsive to the ideas of others, which often means I just post a long response.  When I do that, my thoughts don't make it beyond that feedback form.  So today I've decided to post my full response here:

I agree with the opinions expressed in earlier feedback at Pagan in Paradise by Thorn, Peg and Elizabeth. Here are few factoids that inform my opinion:


*  How one conducts oneself is more important to me than how high one's public profile is.

*  Leaders happen. Some people have leadership qualities, like initiative, and others have less or none at all. And just because someone takes on a leadership role doesn't mean that others have to follow. With no followers, one is not leading anything or anyone. But the emergence of more informed and/or influential and/or accomplished individuals is natural. Nature, is Nature not our teacher?

*  There is a big differencebetween those who see an opportunity to be of service, to do something worthwhile and that probably benefits many, and those who are building a career out of being some 'Pagan personage.'  Whether it's selling books, acquiring teaching gigs for money, whatever, that's somewhat different from leadership, per se. Which is not to say that one cannot be and do both -- be of service and sell books. My point is that motivations may be different. If you have to make some money to pay the rent and what you do to earn money is sell books and give workshops, you have a different motivation from someone who's just doing some kind of labor-intensive and responsibility-laden Pagan-oriented work (like organizing a festival or keeping the account books) that I would also view as a leadership role.

*  Lastly, we live in a culture of celebrity. No matter how 'different' and unaffected by mainstream mores we may claim to be, every one of us lives within, and is affected and informed by, the overculture.

Having said all that, I will conclude by mentioning that when you see Pagans doing work you consider beneficial or worthwhile, it's nice to give them some word of appreciation. As a sometime-recipient of words of encouragement, I can tell you it really feels good. Conversely, it doesn't feel so good to be overlooked.

By the same token, if someone is doing something publicly on behalf of Paganism and you think what they're doing is not good, it's appropriate to address the things you think are problematic or those with which you don't agree. To hold that person accountable, at least to the community/organization on whose behalf that person acts. That does not mean trashing the person. It only means speaking to specific issues.

And if you really hate what someone is doing in the public forum, you really disagree, well, jump into that sandbox and build your own castle; put your own ideas in motion.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

South Africa has come a long way in the last twenty years. In 1994 we had our first free elections, and from it we left Apartheid where it belonged- in the past. Then in 1996 we adopted a new Constitution; one which is heralded by many first world countries as being progressive. However, as liberal as our Constitution may be, South Africa is still a very conservative nation; especially when it comes to the topic of religion.

 

Our Constitution under Chapter 2, section 15, guarantees each citizen the right to freedom of religion:

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs

Earlier this year, I decided to go back to school to complete a Master’s in Bioethics (I know, as if raising two young kids, working full-time while trying to get another book out and juggling 2 blogs wasn’t enough. What can I say? I am mildly insane!) I am taking a class right now in Bioethics and the law, which is really interesting. We are reading a book by Guy Durand (Six études d’éthique et de philosophie du droit) and the last chapter was on Dissidence and social disobedience. His commentary was that there is a place for disobedience to authority within certain boundaries and that we have a right to refuse to do something that is contrary to our conscience, even if it is mandated by the law. An example of this is the refusal to military service if it is against your personal convictions. In certain countries, this objection of conscience is a recognized right and accommodations can be made (such as civil service instead of military service, for instance)

 

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Active Eco-Paganism

There is a conversation topic getting a much-needed dust-off in recent days thanks to both the inaugural speech by US President Obama and a recent blog post by Sierra Club Executive Director, Michael Brune; environmental activism. I've written about how I feel an undeniable stewardship of the planet because of my religious views, which include not only the environment as being sacred, but that as a matter of practicality and selfishness, this is the only environment we have and we need to do everything we can to keep it healthy enough to sustain us, which invariably means approaching our life choices as part of the system and not separate and superior to it.

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  • Editor B
    Editor B says #
    This is something I believe in. I helped co-found the Green Party of Louisiana, now sadly near-defunct — but there may be some new
  • Peter Beckley
    Peter Beckley says #
    I love what you're saying here. The way you make disposable plastic eating utensils against your religion, is to just do it. I don

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

I’m not usually a big fan of “rotating power.”

Power is not a object that I can wrap up and pass along to the next person in line. Power shifts when someone takes it.

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