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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in nature religion

I caught the tail end of an interview with a non-pagan naturalist this morning. Much of what he had to say sounded, to my ear, very pagan.

(Note: The term “Nature” is profoundly conceptually problematic; I use it here for convenience only.)

  • Humanity comes out of “Nature.”
  • Because of this, humanity harbors a deep nostalgia for “Nature.”
  • Humanity's environmental destructiveness arises out of our disregard for—or unlove of—“Nature.”
  • Instilling a sense of love for “Nature” is the most effective way to undo humanity's current trajectory of eco-suicide.

In this Age of Covid, many non-religious people have been rediscovering what pagans have always known: the consolation of “Nature.” “Nature” heals.

The religions called “pagan” have always known this and, in their fullest realization—be it acknowledged that revival paganism in particular often falls far short of this mark—still do.

Unsurprisingly, I would contend that pagan naturalists have a number of advantages over non-religious naturalists. Of the top, I can think of three.

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. Posch, Hear, hear!
On 'Abrahamic' Privilege and the Pagan Consolation

So: a rabbi, an imam, and a pastor walk into a radio studio.

Actually, they skype in.

Are you as sick as I am of hearing the media's treatment of “the religious response to covid-19” being reduced (over and over and over and over and over again) to the usual voices of the usual Big Three?

Where are the Hindu voices, the Buddhist? Where are the Native elders? You'd think that the rest of us don't even exist.

Ironically, the media thinks that it's being inclusive. Good old "Abrahamic" privilege.

These segments always end with the same question: In these hard times, what gives you strength?

Said rabbi, imam, or pastor invariably respond with some navel-gazing citation from Scripture or well-polished nugget of wisdom from their respective traditions.

Figures. Their narcissistic fixation on humanity is one of the great historic wrongs that the “A-list” religions have visited on the world.

As for me, I'm a pagan. For me—as for the ancestors, as for Indigenous peoples of the world to this very day—the very heart of our living inheres not so much in looking in as in looking out.

What gives me strength in these hard times? I'll tell you.

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  • Sarah Israelson
    Sarah Israelson says #
    Yes! I was just saying this to myself as I took time to witness Nature around me yesterday. The whales are migrating by our beach,
  • Mark Green
    Mark Green says #
    YES. This.
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Venice is under lockdown for, what, a month now? Already the fish are coming back into the canals. "Nature"'s ability to regenerat
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I've looked at a couple of coronavirus lock down effects on wild animals videos on YouTube. The sight of wild boars in the streets
  • Katie
    Katie says #
    Every time I go outside, breathe the air, feel the breeze, I am strengthened. Every time I see the sun shining, I am energized. Wh
The Green Album: a Pagan treat for all who love the Earth

A wonderful new CD of Pagan songs honoring the sacredness of Nature has just blessed us. I have enjoyed it immensely and hope many of you will as well. That’s the elevator speech. Here’s why.

The Green Album is a collection by many of our best contemporary Pagan musicians contributing their original music to honor the earth. At a time when the fate of the place we love is being threatened by greed, ignorance, and fear, music can strengthen those of us who feel powerless given magnitude of the forces we oppose and even penetrate minds and hearts closed to argument and evidence.  This collection does so for me.

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Pagan News Beagle: Watery Wednesday, July 13

A Shinto practitioner shares a basic prayer for beginners. One visitor to the Michigan Pagan Festivals reports on it afterward. And portable shrines for traveling Pagans make their debut. It's Watery Wednesday, our weekly segment for news about the Pagan community. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Social Justice: A Pagan Perspective

I gave a keynote talk at the Conference of Current Pagan Studies January 23 on viewing social justice from a Pagan perspective. It went well and while the paper it was based on is much too long for a normal blog post, I have made it available as an article on my web page. After a discussion of social justice at a more abstract level, I end with exploring issues of Nature and race.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Thanks Erin...Fixed!
  • Erin
    Erin says #
    I click the link and it says the webpage can't be found. I really want to read this. Please fix.

 

For many older Pagans, the personal roots of our practice lie within the ‘counterculture’ of the 60s and 70s. New spiritual winds were then blowing across the desiccated body of American religion, which for many of us had withered into beliefs rooted in fear and habit. On a mass level questions of right livelihood first began challenging the American Dream of more things and more money - and many of us accepted alternative visions to a greater or lesser degree. Across the country efforts to make real greater equality and respect between the sexes, affirmation of different cultures and ways of life, and enhanced love for the natural world, transforming many lives. Many were drawn to seeking and sometimes encountering the Divine Feminine.

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Posted by on in Studies Blogs
Seasons & Reasons

 

We live in private worlds mostly of our own creation, and though you may take that metaphorically or metaphysically, in this case I mean the physical conditions around us. I would wager that most of you that are reading this blog live in homes where you have the power of day and night by clicking the lights on or off. You, or someone associated with your home, probably controls the seasons of your home through heating and/or air-conditioning. Water comes to you through a faucet, and the roof keeps the storms at bay. If you so choose, and you have the coin to pay with, the fruits and vegetables of almost any climate and season can be brought to your plate. Unless you are in dire straits or have chosen an ascetic life, these domestic powers are generally taken for granted. Not that long ago in the grand scheme of things, they would have been seen as marvels to be only found in Fairyland or in a wizard’s keep. All magick has a cost, even the very tame magic that is brought about by wires, plumbing, and pistons. Although it is true that our creature comforts have economic, political, and ecological costs, it is one of the costs to our psyche that this blog will explore.

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