Fundamentalist Paganism?

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Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Sakhaiva on Tue Mar 30, 2010 4:55 pm

Greetings.

We're all familiar with fundamentalist Christians, Muslims.. even Hindu.

I was just wondering, is there such a thing as a fundamentalist Pagan? (In modern times) Or is Paganism self-limiting with regards to such things?

Cheers to all!
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Gorm_Sionnach on Tue Mar 30, 2010 5:17 pm

Paganism is a rather broad umbrella term for a large number of religions, spiritualities and the like, so with that in mind, it is feasible that a Pagan could be a fundamentalist, but then it also depends on what you mean by fundamentalist. Are there Pagans who think that they have the only true religion, well I'm sure there could be but in all my years I've never come across one.

There is certainly issues with "traditionalists" vs "eclectics", pagans vs reconstructionist, etc. though these usually boil down to a number of issues.
1. The importance placed on history and tradition
2. The importance on innovation and modernity
3. The importance of Orthopraxy
4. The importance of eclecticism
5. The importance of cultural specificity
6. The importance of universalism/ syncretism
7. The importance of the individual
8. The importance of the group
9. The model of deity (atheist, agnostic, monotheist, henotheist, duotheist, polytheist (hard/ soft), pantheist, panentheist, etc.)

And a whole host of other issues which one need think about, and what they place emphasis on.

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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by DotNotInOz on Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:09 pm

There are certainly "holier-than-thou" types among Pagans and occultists just as there are in the mainstream religions. Some of them can be quite as arrogant and full of themselves as any hardcore fundamentalist of a mainstream religion.

Paganism is such a mixed bag as practiced today that in the literal sense of one desiring to return to a more pure form of a faith, there really aren't any such Pagans that I've ever encountered although I suppose there could be. For one thing, no one really knows what the original form of any branch of Paganism may have been like.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:28 pm

Oh I've run into some Pagans that in their own minds are fundamentally correct. Thats why I'm very solitaire, in my practice, beliefs, & what I choose to be called. However here in the Army to make it much easier to swallow for the Physcologist & the Social Worker I put Catholic/Pagan. And no I didn't mark yes to having "special powers". "Talking in tongues" anyone? "Laying hands" on someone? or "Casting out the devil". Just because I have women's & motherly intuition, among "other" things....shhh those types of things aren't talked about among "normal" war hungry masses of people.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by gillyflower on Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:35 pm

The only thing that matters (aside from harming other people) is if the religion/spirituality is satisfying to the person. Doesn't matter if the religion is supposedly thousands of years old or born day before yesterday. If it is a "pure" religion and yet doesn't do it for the person, what's good about it? Purity doesn't matter.

All the claims of "My religion is better than yours"? Why yes, your is better for you. My religion is better for me. Many people don't seem to get that. It isn't a popularity contest. Each of us are different and have different spiritual needs. It just comes down to if a religion satisfies those needs or not for the individual. And if it doesn't, it isn't because there is something wrong with the person.

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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by gillyflower on Tue Mar 30, 2010 7:37 pm

Willowcreek70633 wrote: Oh I've run into some Pagans that in their own minds are fundamentally correct. Thats why I'm very solitaire, in my practice, beliefs, & what I choose to be called. However here in the Army to make it much easier to swallow for the Physcologist & the Social Worker I put Catholic/Pagan. And no I didn't mark yes to having "special powers". "Talking in tongues" anyone? "Laying hands" on someone? or "Casting out the devil". Just because I have women's & motherly intuition, among "other" things....shhh those types of things aren't talked about among "normal" war hungry masses of people.

They used to have a good pagan circle going there. You should check into it.

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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Wed Mar 31, 2010 11:19 am

I don't see why not. I think that in reconstructionist paths these would be the people who run off and try to live as the ancestors did.

There is probably part of that in me too. I do have a tendency to think of myself as "better" that the average person. Got a little bit of narcissism there. (shrug)

all
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Mar 31, 2010 12:37 pm

OK, the fundy Xian speaks. NO. Fundamentalist Christianity began as A) a reaction to evolution and Higher Biblical criticism B) as an ecumenical movement to organize the theological conservatives among many groups including Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, and Anglicans to work together. IMO, fundy is misuded when applied to anything other than the Historical Movement and its current progeny. I realize mine is a minority opinion.

So called Muslim Fundamentalism is also a reaction to Science and Modernity-so I will give a pass to them even though they don't have anything that aproximates either the 5 or 10 fundamentals of the Faith.

Pagans may be returning to the Faith of their ancestors; but i don't see other similiarities.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Wed Mar 31, 2010 12:44 pm

Yeah, but there is a thought process being validated here.

I think that it can come from the same place regardless of which religion one subscribes to.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by DotNotInOz on Wed Mar 31, 2010 6:32 pm

allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:Yeah, but there is a thought process being validated here.

I think that it can come from the same place regardless of which religion one subscribes to.

Huh?

Spell that out a bit more, wouldya, all? I think I get what you mean but want to be certain I'm understanding you correctly.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Wed Mar 31, 2010 6:46 pm

It's what attracts various types of people. Personality types, if you will. The same type of person that is attracted to harder-line Christianity would be attracted to an unforgiving form of paganism.

The only real difference is in what religion they subscribe to.

Just a thought I'm testing out.

all
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Wed Mar 31, 2010 8:50 pm

I'm a firm believer that spirit speaks to all of us, in different ways, because we are all on different levels spiritually. And thats cool. So gilly makes sense. Also Dave, I understand what your saying & I agree with returning to "roots" of their ancestors.
It is my opinion that when immigrants moved here (America) from other countries that they brought there cultures wrapped up within their religions. As we became "Americanized" blended, & intergrated within schools, neighborhoods, etc. the cultures along with religions & experiences expanded also. Thats why I don't understand people who say that you cannot merge Paganism w other religions. Africans celebrated their own African or West Indies pagan roots while they wrapped it up in their owners Catholic religion & brought forth Voodoo. Un knowingly to their southern slave owners (whom were Catholic). My own neighborhood certaintly went to the Italian Witch even though they went to church/confession faithfully every day or every week. The Appalachian (Northern European countries)culture/religion/spirituality of "snake handlers is the same thing.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Mar 31, 2010 10:15 pm

allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:It's what attracts various types of people. Personality types, if you will. The same type of person that is attracted to harder-line Christianity would be attracted to an unforgiving form of paganism.

The only real difference is in what religion they subscribe to.

Just a thought I'm testing out.

all

doesn't address those of us born into a certain belief system
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:44 am

Davelaw wrote:
allthegoodnamesweretaken wrote:It's what attracts various types of people. Personality types, if you will. The same type of person that is attracted to harder-line Christianity would be attracted to an unforgiving form of paganism.

The only real difference is in what religion they subscribe to.

Just a thought I'm testing out.

all

doesn't address those of us born into a certain belief system

Well, you guys are just plane stupid! Very Happy

I kind of think this does actually. Regardless what belief system a person is, there are more hard line elements to it. I don't think they change for that, its something else.

all
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Sakhaiva on Fri Apr 02, 2010 2:12 pm

Thanks for your responses! It's comforting to realize that the inner-glitch that causes a person to be a fundi in one faith would cause them to be a fundi in any faith/path.

Willow:
I'm a firm believer that spirit speaks to all of us, in different ways,
because we are all on different levels spiritually.

That's a very good thought .... I can see where one could make a spiritual practice of respecting that other people are where they are meant to be (even if we cannot understand why) Very nice thought.

Gilly:
The only thing that matters (aside from harming other people) is if the
religion/spirituality is satisfying to the person. Doesn't matter if the
religion is supposedly thousands of years old or born day before
yesterday. If it is a "pure" religion and yet doesn't do it for the
person, what's good about it? Purity doesn't matter.

All the
claims of "My religion is better than yours"? Why yes, your is better
for you. My religion is better for me. Many people don't seem to get
that. It isn't a popularity contest. Each of us are different and have
different spiritual needs. It just comes down to if a religion satisfies
those needs or not for the individual. And if it doesn't, it isn't
because there is something wrong with the person.

I love this. Actually, I would love to see more books on the market that say such things....


All
I do have a tendency to think of myself as "better" that the average
person. Got a little bit of narcissism there. (shrug)

I am going to try and channel you tonight as I'm scheduled to play my flute for a service of darkness... I'm usually very frightened...

DOT
Paganism is such a mixed bag as practiced today that in the literal
sense of one desiring to return to a more pure form of a faith, there
really aren't any such Pagans that I've ever encountered although I
suppose there could be. For one thing, no one really knows what the
original form of any branch of Paganism may have been like.

That's a very handy aspect of paganism... but it makes me sad at the same time.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by DotNotInOz on Fri Apr 02, 2010 6:59 pm

Sakhaiva wrote:

DOT
Paganism is such a mixed bag as practiced today that in the literal
sense of one desiring to return to a more pure form of a faith, there
really aren't any such Pagans that I've ever encountered although I
suppose there could be. For one thing, no one really knows what the
original form of any branch of Paganism may have been like.

That's a very handy aspect of paganism... but it makes me sad at the same time.

I guess I can understand why it would sadden you if you feel more comfortable with a faith that tells you certain things are true and should be believed.

Personally, I find the multi-faceted nature of Paganism quite useful. It's loose enough that people can investigate various aspects, determine what beliefs suit them and formulate their own body of beliefs without anyone telling them, "No, you can't believe that and be a < fill in name of more structured faith > We just don't believe that."
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Fri Apr 02, 2010 11:16 pm

I think that with some of us Pagans accepting others on their terms spiritually, means that their is no "man made" structure that you have to adhere to!
Dot makes a very good point above. Not ALL Pagans think that way. But like what All (our Bear)...was saying before when your trying to go back & reconstruct a old way practice you have to focus. If that means leaving society for awhile to screw your mind on right, then do so!
All, really thats why John & I live outside of the city limits, & enjoy our little piece of yard, with garden, flowers, etc. We enjoy peace!
Gilly & I were talking about this very thing just the other week!
Yes I do agree, there SHOULD be more written about similarities & bringing people together then separating the masses with cutting each other down, & stabbing people in the back!
I know I'm prattling again!
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by allthegoodnamesweretaken on Sat Apr 03, 2010 11:18 am

Willowcreek70633 wrote: I think that with some of us Pagans accepting others on their terms spiritually, means that their is no "man made" structure that you have to adhere to!
Dot makes a very good point above. Not ALL Pagans think that way. But like what All (our Bear)...was saying before when your trying to go back & reconstruct a old way practice you have to focus. If that means leaving society for awhile to screw your mind on right, then do so!
All, really thats why John & I live outside of the city limits, & enjoy our little piece of yard, with garden, flowers, etc. We enjoy peace!
Gilly & I were talking about this very thing just the other week!
Yes I do agree, there SHOULD be more written about similarities & bringing people together then separating the masses with cutting each other down, & stabbing people in the back!
I know I'm prattling again!

No, it's good.

I think we spend to much time looking for similarities myself. To much reconciling different ideas. While it is good to look for similarities, some things just can't be reconciled. Some things are to different.

I think we actually need to celebrate these differences. It is not a wrong thing to disagree. People can have disagreements and still get along.
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Sakhaiva on Sat Apr 03, 2010 12:16 pm

Dot:
I guess I can understand why it would sadden you if you feel more
comfortable with a faith that tells you certain things are true and
should be believed.


I like history... there is something meaningful in participating in acts that have been performed for hundreds .. in some case thousands of years. When certain aspects of society become buried in time, it saddens me. Sad

Personally, I find the multi-faceted nature
of Paganism quite useful. It's loose enough that people can investigate
various aspects, determine what beliefs suit them and formulate their
own body of beliefs without anyone telling them, "No, you can't believe
that and be a < fill in name of more structured faith > We just
don't believe that.

I can see the positive in this....

All:
I think we actually need to celebrate these differences. It is not a
wrong thing to disagree. People can have disagreements and still get
along.

It's the basis for our country Smile

Willow:
Yes I do agree, there SHOULD be more written about similarities &
bringing people together then separating the masses with cutting each
other down, & stabbing people in the back!
I know I'm prattling
again!

((((((Willow)))))))
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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Sat Apr 03, 2010 1:10 pm

To me, I have to have structure; The old stuff impresses me because it's not so much a cultural value, but it seems to have more meaning.

I'm scientifically minded, I have to know "why" anything. That was my ticket out of Baptistland. It's the question you can't ask.

If I'm doing something in a religious context, I have to know why, and what good it is for me and others or the gods concerned. That's why a lot of stuff in the wiccan path (and other new pagan paths) don't jive for me. That's also why NT jives for me; everything has an answer to the 'whys' and they make sense to me.

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Re: Fundamentalist Paganism?

Post by Willowcreek70633 on Sat Apr 03, 2010 11:09 pm

Difference are good, as long as the understanding meter is flowing. Mind you, I'll listen to anything & everything, walk away & make up my own understanding within my realm through spirit! My Grandmother once told me: "I don't have to accept anything, but I do have to understand." I enjoy mind candy if you will. Some people hunt for the whys & I hunt for the why nots? Spirit is my guide. I don't "think" about spirit. And yes, All, that is where the disagreements need to be understood, celebrated, & finally realized.
Like TED, I too like to dabble in the whys. But why does not always give the final answer. Sometimes the why nots have to be questioned & answered as well. Some one's prayers might be another's meditation. Someones rosary might be someone Else's meditation beads or stones. Someones laying on of the hands might be another's potions & rituals. Someones enlightenment might be someone else witnessing. Someone's circle might be someone else service.
The science to all this? Its there along with the natural world.
Fundamentalist to me are constantly keeping science & religion or nature & religion separate. To me one is not better than the other but must all work within humankind's mind to be understood.
EX: I have waited all winter long for the trees to bloom into their leaves. I have watched each day here in GA, the bareness turn into buds, & finally turn into small leaves. From new light colored lime leaves to deep green. Did I sit & wait to watch the whole process? No. For each day brings something different, something new that didn't catch my eye either in the morning or the afternoon. Did the trees stop blooming because I missed something? No. Science & nature deemed it was time for this all to take place. Do I understand it all? No. Did it happen anyways? Yes. Did God or The All make the seasons change, for the trees to bloom? If that's how people choose to believe than so be it. But with or without me watching, thinking, understanding or questioning these matters: the seasons changed & the trees were going to get their new leaves anyways.
Prattling again! Sorry, keep up folks..
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