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Poll

As a Heathen, do you feel alienated from the greater pagan community?

es, I don\'t fit in well.
5 (33.3%)
o, I fit in just fine.
4 (26.7%)
 find it hard to fit into either.
6 (40%)

Total Members Voted: 15

Author Topic: Alienation from the greater pagan community  (Read 10421 times)

thorsvin

Alienation from the greater pagan community
« on: January 17, 2012, 12:59:56 pm »
To all my fellow Heathens on TC, I'd like to ask do you ever feel alienated from the greater pagan community? Or from the heathen community?

I ask this question because I feel like I am sort of trapped in the middle. I'm a heathen, but I also consider myself a Druid and very Left Libertarian in my political views. I find it hard for me to fit in to either.

I would be very interested to hear other Heathens tell their stories and views about this topic.

hlewagastir

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2012, 01:52:01 pm »
Quote from: thorsvin;39095
To all my fellow Heathens on TC, I'd like to ask do you ever feel alienated from the greater pagan community? Or from the heathen community?

I ask this question because I feel like I am sort of trapped in the middle. I'm a heathen, but I also consider myself a Druid and very Left Libertarian in my political views. I find it hard for me to fit in to either.

I would be very interested to hear other Heathens tell their stories and views about this topic.



Through the years I have fond that I seldomly agree with "the greater pagan community" on religious issues... I have a hard time feeling alienated since the term sort of implies (IMO) that I have to be or have been a part of said community.

thorsvin

Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2012, 02:11:26 pm »
Quote from: hlewagastir;39100
Through the years I have fond that I seldomly agree with "the greater pagan community" on religious issues... I have a hard time feeling alienated since the term sort of implies (IMO) that I have to be or have been a part of said community.

 
That's fair enough. I consider heathens to be part of the "greater pagan community", but I can see why others would not. Still, it is an interesting point of view - thanks for the reply!

Juniperberry

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2012, 03:34:21 pm »
Quote from: thorsvin;39095
To all my fellow Heathens on TC, I'd like to ask do you ever feel alienated from the greater pagan community? Or from the heathen community?

I ask this question because I feel like I am sort of trapped in the middle. I'm a heathen, but I also consider myself a Druid and very Left Libertarian in my political views. I find it hard for me to fit in to either.

I would be very interested to hear other Heathens tell their stories and views about this topic.

 

I was "philosophically pagan" for about ten years and making the move to the heathen community was a bit of a culture shock. It's two different worldviews, honestly.

I disagree with you that being a Lefty is somehow at odds with heathenry, and many Celtic influenced people have begun calling themselves heathens as well.

Anyway, just even a month or two ago I was a real bulldog about the differences in heathenry and paganism and sorting out the differences. I mean, they're there,  but it isn't so much an issue anymore. Heathenry is familial, tribal...the relationships I have with my wights and ancestors and my kin is different than the next person's. Hopefully, you just sort of relax into what works for you and your home.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2012, 08:00:02 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;39112
I was "philosophically pagan" for about ten years and making the move to the heathen community was a bit of a culture shock. It's two different worldviews, honestly.

I disagree with you that being a Lefty is somehow at odds with heathenry, and many Celtic influenced people have begun calling themselves heathens as well.

Anyway, just even a month or two ago I was a real bulldog about the differences in heathenry and paganism and sorting out the differences. I mean, they're there,  but it isn't so much an issue anymore. Heathenry is familial, tribal...the relationships I have with my wights and ancestors and my kin is different than the next person's. Hopefully, you just sort of relax into what works for you and your home.


More to add:


I think a lot of the alienation occurs because heathens do "homework" or ask for sources and don't accept UPG as as valuable as pagans sometimes do.

A paper by Haakon Fyhn says it so much better than I--

"The Elder Edda can often be difficult to deal with, as the poems are constantly referring to each other. The poems of the Elder Edda form an interlocking system. They confirm each other, and give meaning to each other, they form their own cosmos, holding each other in place. Reading the Edda, is entering this cosmos, through out the reading, meaning emerges, gradually, as the different scenes or symbols colour each other and deepen each other. No phenomenon in this mythological cosmos stands by it self. They exists all in relation to the whole cosmos, as parts, or rather aspects of it, and they are brought to life by it. Even a single word can reach unknown dimensions of meaning as the cosmos of the elder Edda unfolds from careful reading."

So, yes, some heathens like to see sources and citations and such to see how the whole puzzle is coming together---even if a person is just making a case for a new dimensionality they personally believe in. This is how the Eddas work. And I've seen some pagans become offended by that type of conversation.

At the same time, a lot of heathens add their own depth. They see the larger picture and bring individual details to their lives. Bil Linzie writes about how important the New Mexico chili festivals are to him (not European or "ancient"). Bob has interesting and personal ways that he relates to the world as a heathen with paranormal interests (hope I'm not speaking out of turn).

Plus, again, I think there's underlying goals behind why one pursues paganism or heathenry that's different, and it can hard to find common ground when these can be at odds with each other.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2012, 08:01:03 pm by Juniperberry »
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

bobthesane

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2012, 08:07:46 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;39140
More to add:

At the same time, a lot of heathens add their own depth. They see the larger picture and bring individual details to their lives. Bil Linzie writes about how important the New Mexico chili festivals are to him (not European or "ancient"). Bob has interesting and personal ways that he relates to the world as a heathen with paranormal interests (hope I'm not speaking out of turn).

Nlo no, you're fine and correct. And like Bil, being a New Mexican myself, our Kindred (that Bil is a member of BTW) every year we celebrated a harvest Blot and Sumbel in September. That's when the green chile harvest came in, and also when the grapes would be picked. We even handmade wine one year. Picked them from my kinsman's arbor, squished them in a tub, everything!

That same kinsman is the one who got me into ghost hunting, actually. I do not find it odd that we both feel more of a pull in Odin's direction than most other deities, given our penchant for wandering the earth playing with dead things :)

Melamphoros

Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2012, 08:12:12 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;39140

I think a lot of the alienation occurs because heathens do "homework" or ask for sources and don't accept UPG as as valuable as pagans sometimes do.

 
And non-heathens don't do this?  There are other types of reconstructionist besides the ones that self-identify as heathen.  Hell, there are a ton of non-recons that do "homework" or ask for sources.  Just look at most of the long-term members of this site.  We might seem strange to you but we do exist.


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Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2012, 08:24:33 pm »
Quote from: Melamphoros;39143
And non-heathens don't do this?  There are other types of reconstructionist besides the ones that self-identify as heathen.  Hell, there are a ton of non-recons that do "homework" or ask for sources.  Just look at most of the long-term members of this site.  We might seem strange to you but we do exist.

Can I get an amen? That remark painted the pagan community with too broad a brush to be totally accurate IMO.
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That what is no sense must be nonsense.

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Juniperberry

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2012, 08:25:07 pm »
Quote from: Melamphoros;39143
And non-heathens don't do this?  There are other types of reconstructionist besides the ones that self-identify as heathen.  Hell, there are a ton of non-recons that do "homework" or ask for sources.  Just look at most of the long-term members of this site.  We might seem strange to you but we do exist.


I don't know why this offends you. The question is how we have experienced a sense of alienation as a heathen- which I am, and not another path. If you feel that your path also has issues in this area than you should provide your own perspective rather than attacking mine. Since you feel the same way, we could have discussed this on common ground without the snarkiness.

I try to be PC, but frankly, I cant speak up and mention all paths that may have similarities to my own. Especially when it isn't my place to do so.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Owl

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2012, 08:32:36 pm »
Quote from: Melamphoros;39143
And non-heathens don't do this?  There are other types of reconstructionist besides the ones that self-identify as heathen.  Hell, there are a ton of non-recons that do "homework" or ask for sources.  Just look at most of the long-term members of this site.  We might seem strange to you but we do exist.

 
And many non-heathens feel alienated from the greater pagan community simply because we are NOT wiccan, or wiccanish.  Sorry, just not and so not going to even bother having the discussion why.  Because I won't play their game, they are uncomfortable with me much of the time.  It probably doesn't help that I won't pretend to be all sweetness and light either.

The problem here, in my opinion, is that the most vocal part of the greater pagan community seems (from those I run into) to be mostly made up of wicca light.  Not big on scholarship, not interested in the opinions of others, not big on admitting to the existence of heathens and recons and religious witches and others.
Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.

Melamphoros

Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2012, 08:34:31 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;39145
I don't know why this offends you. The question is how we have experienced a sense of alienation as a heathen- which I am, and not another path. If you feel that your path also has issues in this area than you should provide your own perspective rather than attacking mine. Since you feel the same way, we could have discussed this on common ground without the snarkiness.

I try to be PC, but frankly, I cant speak up and mention all paths that may have similarities to my own. Especially when it isn't my place to do so.

 
Stephy summed it up best:  Your statement painted non-heathens with a very broad, inaccurate, and (frankly) insulting brush.


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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2012, 09:19:42 pm »
Quote from: thorsvin;39095

I ask this question because I feel like I am sort of trapped in the middle. I'm a heathen, but I also consider myself a Druid and very Left Libertarian in my political views. I find it hard for me to fit in to either.


It's just one of the reasons I don't call myself a Heathen lol. I just find that my values mesh better with the greater Pagan community. What I have in common with Heathens is that we honour the same gods, and that's about it.

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2012, 09:21:53 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;39145
I don't know why this offends you. The question is how we have experienced a sense of alienation as a heathen- which I am, and not another path. If you feel that your path also has issues in this area than you should provide your own perspective rather than attacking mine. Since you feel the same way, we could have discussed this on common ground without the snarkiness.

I try to be PC, but frankly, I cant speak up and mention all paths that may have similarities to my own. Especially when it isn't my place to do so.

 
It would go a very, very long way, if you stopped using the word "pagan" to mean "Wiccish neoPagans who do little research".

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2012, 09:23:28 pm »
Quote from: Melamphoros;39150
Stephy summed it up best:  Your statement painted non-heathens with a very broad, inaccurate, and (frankly) insulting brush.

 
I'm sorry you took it that way but I think you've failed to take into account, or are unaware of, some of the dynamics and politics that- while maybe not unique- definitely have a heightened tension within the heathen community, and with which most heathens become quickly familiar with.

I assume you are aware, though, as this board has been home to many arguments concerning Northern Tradition paganism, Edda-thumping, etc. In fact, TC currently has a separate group for Alternative Norse Paganism which the members post to in purposeful ....alienation? of the heathenry SIG? Whatever the case, it's a strong statement that pertains to, and causes, discussions such as these.

So, while I'm sorry you felt insulted, my post was directed more towards that issue within the heathenry community and not the general pagan (or otherwise) audience and their dynamics with one another.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

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Re: Alienation from the greater pagan community
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2012, 09:38:02 pm »
:confused:
Quote from: SunflowerP;39161
It would go a very, very long way, if you stopped using the word "pagan" to mean "Wiccish neoPagans who do little research".

Sunflower

Again, I'm sorry you read it that way. I thought I was very careful to qualify some pagans sometimes can have that reaction.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2012, 09:39:03 pm by Juniperberry »
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

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