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Gus diZerega

Gus diZerega

Gus diZerega is a Third Degree Elder in Gardnerian Wicca. He studied closely with Timothy White who later founded Shaman’s Drum magazine, and also studied Brazilian Umbanda  for six years under Antonio Costa e Silva.Dr. diZerega has published widely on the social sciences in the academic press as well as on spirituality.  His second book Pagans and Christians: The Personal Spiritual Experience won the Best Nonfiction of 2001 award from  The Coalition of Visionary Resources.  His third, coauthored with Philip Johnson, is Beyond the Burning Times: A Pagan and a Christian in Dialogue. His art frequently appeared in Shaman’s Drum, and the ecological journals Wild Earth, and The Trumpeter.DiZerega combines a formal academic training in Political Science with decades of work in Wicca and shamanic healing.His newest book, Faultlines: The Culture War and the Return of the Divine Feminine, received a 'silver' award by the Association of Independent Publishers for 2014. 

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

As with every year, this year’s Pantheacon offered too rich a menu of workshops and performances for any of us to see all we wanted. This year I was lucky. Several of my favorite Pagan singers (and wonderful people as well) offered back-to-back performances, and I was able to see them all. Ruth Barrett and Holly Tannen  were prominent Pagan minstrels and bards when I first entered our community back in 1984.

    b2ap3_thumbnail_Ruth-serious.jpg b2ap3_thumbnail_Holly-Tannen.jpg

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Anti-choice advocates claim the ethical high ground. They continually use language such as “pro-life,” call a fetus a “baby,” and proclaim their devotion to the well-being of the unborn.  They contrast this with the heartlessness of ‘choice.’ Even when we disagree it is tempting to treat them as acting in good faith.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    I looked at your page. Nicely done, good art. I have no problem at all with people Pagan or otherwise who are "pro-life" so long
  • ProLifePagan
    ProLifePagan says #
    Not wishing to argue. Just reply and provide you with a opportunity to understand you may have some flaws in your arguements regar

 

There is a quite different argument against abortion I have heard from several Pagan women.  I am more sympathetic to it than to the usual “fetus is human” claim that I demolished in my previous post.   Even so, I think it ultimately fails, though it does complicate a woman’s decision.

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One of the first things the new Republican majority has done in Congress is to escalate the battle against legal abortion.  Republicans have long been seeking the world’s most restrictive law on abortion. Today, in the midst of what most people would regard as far more pressing issues, Republican leadership is seeking to further restrict women’s access in ways that ultimately alienated even many Republican women members of Congress  The reasons for their fanaticism go deeper than the reasons anti-women’s rights groups give for opposing abortion.  They go to the root of who they are.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    You are going round and round. In your previous comment you in many ways granted my point that what made something morally worthw
  • Wayne
    Wayne says #
    No, what I pointed out was how your arguments talk in circles, and how they were purely philosophical. You talk about how a child
  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Are you able to understand English? I have always said the case for not allowing abortions for late term fetuses except for the w
  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Thank you for doing the best you can. But your reply indicates you did not understand the column. The opening statement of mine
  • Wayne
    Wayne says #
    Anti-women's rights? Yes, that's the typical propaganda that people like you spread against those who dare to say that it's not ri

A version of this appeared a day ago in Patheos. I think the points I am making are important enough to put this both places.

     Violence in the name of a monotheistic religion has again captured the world’s attention. This time it was committed  in Islam’s name.  In response many columnists and politicians who should know better claim something supposedly unique to Islam is responsible.  This malign misdiagnosis gets two central points utterly wrong.
     First, there are over one billion Muslims in the world, and the great majority are not violent.  Second, while there has been considerable violence by some Muslims in the name of their religion, the majority of their victims have been other Muslims. In this respect Islam is not unusual.  Historically a great many victims of monotheistic violence have been those most other people would regard as practicing the same religion.
For mostly historical reasons, most religious violence today is by those claiming to be Muslims.  But Islam has no monopoly here.  Christianity has spilled plenty of blood in its past. The end of its worst violence did not come as a result of any advances in Christian morality or spiritual understanding. Relative peace arose from mutual exhaustion, when the various factions realized they could never kill all the other side.
     True religious tolerance considered as a matter of principle had to wait the coming of the Enlightenment, the rise of deism, and the triumph of the American Revolution. Deism is not monotheism, which is why so many Christian leaders of that time called them atheists.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    You're welcome!
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    Gus - Thank you for this incredibly comprehensive study of the different Gods of Christianity! I agree that Mysticism is the best

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Thoughts about Solstice for 2014

Celebrating the turnings of the Wheel of the Year encourage us to meditate on the cycles of life. This year celebrating the Winter Solstice has proven is harder for me to enter  wholeheartedly than often in the past. At the Solstice we celebrate light’s return, and with it the rebirth of life from the mystery of death. This year perhaps it is fitting that it falls on the dark of the moon.  Yule honors the return of light while I am living in a society where the lights seem to be going out.

Ultimately my post will be positive, very much so.  But let us not pretend it is easy to see any growing light beyond that of the sun itself. 

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Gus -- wow, I had no idea you were an artist! Let's talk about this some more via email.
  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    I am the artist.
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Although the list of woes (especially the political material, some of which I respectfully see differently than you) at the beginn
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Gus -- I absolutely love the image at the top of your post. Who's the artist?

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Usually I post my own stuff here, but an old friend, and very long time Pagan who wishes to be known to the outside as Priestess Aurora Borealis Medicine Turkey, has written a wonderful poem celebrating Mid-Winter Eve and I want to share it...

The Eve of Midwinter

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Aurora Borealis is truly a genius in her work.
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. diZerega, Hilarious poem! My thanks for sharing it.
  • Sophie Goldstein
    Sophie Goldstein says #
    Couldn't have said it better myself! Sophia Goldenstone Langwitch Ilkley Moor, W. Yorkshire

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