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Author Topic: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?  (Read 16693 times)

Jack

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #60 on: June 24, 2013, 02:28:54 am »
Quote from: Asch;113444
That's not discrimination that's putting an inconsiderate jerk in their place.

 
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #61 on: September 02, 2016, 10:05:18 am »
Quote from: RedHawk;102750
Have any of you suffered discrimination as a pagan? I must admit that I've never suffered any form of discrimination out there as a pagan. I've been attacked on-line by people that believe that I have to be black to worship the Egyptian gods but that was a couple of years ago and every once in a while someone will find my video's and make comments that are stupid but out there, no.



Yes. In fact, I am currently having a lot of trouble finding a new familiar because of this. Humane societies, local people snub me, shun me, and tell me I am not fit to adopt or have a cat. I'm appalled.

I had a beautiful familiar who I named Jasper and I had him since I was very little and he was just a kitten. He recently passed away of old age, and I have tons of pictures that show how well cared for and loved he was by me over the years, even up until his day of passing. He lived to be 23 years old, and I miss him so much. My home doesn't feel right without a cat in it.

I am a good person and the only thing keeping me from finding a kitty a forever loving home is my beliefs. Even in this day and age people still believe pagans are psycho sadistic killer devil worshippers doing animal sacrifice or something. It's beyond frustrating. I feel like it's unfair that I shouldn't have to lie about my religious beliefs or my lifestyle to appease someone's uncalled for prejudice. :(

I never mention that I am looking for a familiar, but I am like any normal cat lover who is just seeking a new member of my family. I miss my kitty who passed and I know nobody else would be discriminated against if they said exactly what I do but just that they are a different religion.

I recently answered a local ad in the paper through my email, and the person apparently looked me up and found out I have a blog, and found out I was pagan. I am not shy, I mean, if I was a sadistic animal killer do you really think I would openly post about paganism on a public blog for all to see??? And as I've said, I have never done anything to deserve this discrimination from people. I have no criminal record, not even a seat belt warning. I don't even feel okay with myself turning right on a red light... Lol

I feel so discouraged by people and their discrimination against pagans sometimes.

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #62 on: September 02, 2016, 10:58:04 am »
Quote from: zelda;195792
Yes. In fact, I am currently having a lot of trouble finding a new familiar because of this. Humane societies, local people snub me, shun me, and tell me I am not fit to adopt or have a cat. I'm appalled.


That's horrible!

I'm curious whether you live in an area where being Pagan is particularly misunderstood.

I also know from friends who work with animal rescues that while there are a lot of great people out there, animal rescues and humane societies are often one of the places where you can get one person with extremely strong ideas of how things should be run (who is fit to adopt pets, etc. and who isn't - I haven't hit Pagan discrimination, though I don't do Pagan stuff under my legal name, but have run into people who think that if you're single and sometimes away from home for 10-12 hour stretches, you shouldn't have a cat.) They can turn into these really weird cults of personality.

In terms of finding a new cat, it might help to put together a pet resume (information about your previous cat, the vet he saw, etc.) that helps demonstrate you're a responsible pet owner (just like people sometimes do when looking for an apartment with a pet). That, and focusing on organizations that are not a cult of personality or focused on one person's decision making might help you out a lot. (i.e. a larger nearby county humane society rather than a tiny one, one that has clear language about their adoption requirements up front, etc.)

Two friends have gotten three of their current cats from their vet's - vets often know of animals who need a new home, and obviously they can vouch for you as having taken care of Jasper well.)
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TheRaginPagan

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #63 on: September 03, 2016, 07:17:40 pm »
Quote from: RedHawk;102750
Have any of you suffered discrimination as a pagan?

Not really discrimination, but I have been harassed a few times. One woman objected to my pentacle (during my Wicca-ish phase) as an "open sign of rebellion against the status quo" and assumed I was a Satanist. So I objected to her crucifix as an open display of torture, execution, and assumed she was a sadist.

Then my former employer referred to my wife and I living together (at the time we were not married) as "unholy". He'd also hold prayers with customers when it was slow (the area I was in was heavily Christian). A co-worker at that location wouldn't work with me if possible because he knew I was a Pagan, and I've been told by friends still there that he now refers to me as "that guy who didn't believe in Jesus."

Mostly the harassment I get, though, isn't so much for being Pagan as it is for not being Christian. My Paganism is almost ignored, as though they don't want to acknowledge it as an up-and-coming religion.

Surprisingly, most of the harassment and discrimination I've gotten has been from other Pagans, namely Wiccans. In the group I was previously in, I was often looked down upon because the way I practice is very much so not "Love and Light," and my theological outlook is often harsh. The one blót that I lead was a stressful nightmare due to the group leader being nervous about the inclusion of a sword and alcohol, even though we didn't drink it. As a result my involvement with the group became ancillary, ending with my lecture on Icelandic Staves, which she was too busy to give attention to. (Rather she was running around all over the place preparing for a guest that only might have shown up.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2016, 07:22:54 pm by TheRaginPagan »

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #64 on: September 04, 2016, 01:06:32 am »
Quote from: TheRaginPagan;195835


 
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #65 on: September 04, 2016, 04:33:48 am »
Quote from: RedHawk;102750
Have any of you suffered discrimination as a pagan?


No, not at all. The religious beliefs of anyone are generally regarded as a very private and sensitive matter here, and not something to have any positive or negative opinions about.

Two groups, however, come under a negative light in newspapers here: Charismatic Christians and Moslem women wearing traditional garbs larger than head-scarves.

There is a debate going on in the press right now, if schools for Moslem children shall be allowed to give PE lessons to boys and girls separately, or if mixed-gender PE lessons ought to be mandatory in state regulation. Atheists of the Dawkinesque type demand, that no schools will be allowed to keep a religious profile in the future. In the past, there was a debate about male circumcision: The writers (who were mainly Atheists) wanted a law, that forbid any circumsicion of males under the age of majority: Their suggestion was that Jewish and Moslem men ought to wait until the age of 18 before having the surgery.

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #66 on: September 05, 2016, 07:58:53 pm »
Quote from: zelda;195792
Yes. In fact, I am currently having a lot of trouble finding a new familiar because of this. Humane societies, local people snub me, shun me, and tell me I am not fit to adopt or have a cat. I'm appalled.

 
I wish I could help you there, Zekla. We recently lost our little Neko due to a horrific reaction to flea meds.

As to the OP's question, yes, I have and still occasionally do at work since I refuse to hide my beliefs as though they were something to be ashamed of.

For example; I've had people ask me all kinds of ridiculous questions, been harassed about my beard, etc. I tried for promotions at work several times and was denied each time. I was never given a reason why but there are other potential reasons which have nothing to do with my spirituality; such as my girlfriend also working there.

One of my former supervisors seemed to make it his personal crusade to convert me to christianity and the manager once asked me why I grew my beard so "ridiculously long" and told me not to tell her it was because I was a pagan. I kind of wanted to correct her and tell her I am a Heathen but figured there was no point. She thought she was being funny and in this state an employer can literally fire you without any reason so why pick a fight you're guaranteed to lose.

Then again, I live in the bible belt so I suppose it's to be expected. I am truly looking forward to Pagan Pride again this year!
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #67 on: September 06, 2016, 10:33:14 am »
Quote from: zelda;195792

I am a good person and the only thing keeping me from finding a kitty a forever loving home is my beliefs.

 
I know this is somewhat off-topic, but have you tried adopting from an organization such as the Humane Society or SPCA? My experience with the SPCA has been great, and their adoption criteria aren't based on the feelings and prejudices of "some guy from the want ads". I understand some people are reluctant because it has a higher cost associated with it, but when you consider that an animal you get from the SPCA comes already spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and microchipped so you don't have to pay for those things out of pocket it's actually more cost effective. Plus those adoption fees then go back into the organization and give them a chance to care for and adopt out another cat. My local SPCA even has a low-cost vet clinic associated with it that only adoptees are eligible to make appointments at.

Anyway, on my experience- I haven't been discriminated, but that's mostly because I'm still deep in the broom closet. I'm currently a student at a Catholic institution, and hope when I graduate to later get a job at the Catholic hospital associated with said institution, so I'm trying not to rock the boat too much. I've always been open with the fact that I'm no longer Christian to anyone who has asked, but haven't given details beyond that. (Despite that, Financial Aid still applied on my behalf to a scholarship that is only supposed to be for "good Christian women" even after I told them I wasn't applying because I wasn't Christian. :confused:) I know the school doesn't discriminate based on beliefs even though they are associated with a Catholic system- funny enough, when I went to a prospective student session they spoke about that and said "we even had a Wiccan once!" as their example of tolerance, it was kinda eye-rolling they way she said it but at least they're trying.

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #68 on: July 14, 2017, 12:52:59 am »
I know this is somewhat off-topic, but have you tried adopting from an organization such as the Humane Society or SPCA? My experience with the SPCA has been great, and their adoption criteria aren't based on the feelings and prejudices of "some guy from the want ads". I understand some people are reluctant because it has a higher cost associated with it, but when you consider that an animal you get from the SPCA comes already spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and microchipped so you don't have to pay for those things out of pocket it's actually more cost effective. Plus those adoption fees then go back into the organization and give them a chance to care for and adopt out another cat. My local SPCA even has a low-cost vet clinic associated with it that only adoptees are eligible to make appointments at.

So, I just had a new one today, sort of anyway...

I just got called a racist white supremacist because I'm a Heathen - by someone on a social media platform of all places, lol!

The only thing I really do on there that would alert anyone to my beliefs is my daily Rune draw that I post there for the other Pagans. My Gods I feel special now!
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #69 on: July 19, 2017, 01:02:31 am »
Mostly the harassment I get, though, isn't so much for being Pagan as it is for not being Christian. My Paganism is almost ignored, as though they don't want to acknowledge it as an up-and-coming religion.

This. I am not "pagan" according to some people's definitions, (most would call me Hindu), but the few people who have really and truly harassed me in my life have done so without regard to what I DO believe, but rather because of what I do not believe. I was asked to leave a family gathering because I would not participate in Christian prayer, and I have been confronted (though not asked to leave) during high-school and workplace prayer because I would not invoke the name of Jesus. Never-mind the fact that I was doing it out of RESPECT for their faith, and my desire not to falsely pretend to worship their deity.

I have also been harassed or being a vegetarian, which is part of my religion,  but the people who harassed me for that never did so with religion in mind, as far as I know.
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #70 on: August 05, 2017, 01:16:02 am »
Have any of you suffered discrimination as a pagan?

Yes, I have. Both from people outside the Pagan community and within it. At one of my previous workplaces, I was reading a book on the history of the Vikings (I'm a polytheist that primarily honors the Norse pantheon), and a coworker asked me why I was reading the book. I'm a very honest person (despite knowing it gets me into trouble), and I told her the reason I was reading it related to my religion. She tried to proselytize to me, get me to accept Jesus - up until I told her I'd read the entire Bible and asked if she had (she hadn't). Then, she hid from me for the rest of the day. Upon asking another coworker why she was hiding, I learned it was because she was terrified of me because she'd never heard of any religion outside of Christianity, Judaism, and atheism.

Within the Pagan community, I have had to constantly deal with people telling me how I can't honor Loki (I'm his priest, I'm pretty sure that's required). I've had to listen to people tell me he's not a god at all, had to read scholarly articles about how he was a literary device, and other such things. At one point, I might have claimed Asatru as my tradition, but I grew disillusioned with that tradition pretty quickly (I'll still claim the Heathen label, most of the time), as most Asatru kindreds don't allow hailing Loki at all. Won't acknowledge him, treat him like a demon or the equivalent of Satan. There are many, many Pagans within certain subsections who criticize people who honor gods like Loki or the Egyptian god Set.

I actually find it more hurtful to deal with the comments from fellow Pagans. At least I can understand when monotheists act the way they do. But I will never be able to understand this incessant need that some Pagans have to tell other people the right/wrong way to practice or which gods are the "right" and "wrong" ones to worship. Or the ones that have told me, point-blank, that I can't use the label "Heathen" because "that's not how that's done."

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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #71 on: August 05, 2017, 02:30:35 am »
Yes, I have. Both from people outside the Pagan community and within it. At one of my previous workplaces, I was reading a book on the history of the Vikings (I'm a polytheist that primarily honors the Norse pantheon), and a coworker asked me why I was reading the book. I'm a very honest person (despite knowing it gets me into trouble), and I told her the reason I was reading it related to my religion. She tried to proselytize to me, get me to accept Jesus - up until I told her I'd read the entire Bible and asked if she had (she hadn't). Then, she hid from me for the rest of the day. Upon asking another coworker why she was hiding, I learned it was because she was terrified of me because she'd never heard of any religion outside of Christianity, Judaism, and atheism.

Within the Pagan community, I have had to constantly deal with people telling me how I can't honor Loki (I'm his priest, I'm pretty sure that's required). I've had to listen to people tell me he's not a god at all, had to read scholarly articles about how he was a literary device, and other such things. At one point, I might have claimed Asatru as my tradition, but I grew disillusioned with that tradition pretty quickly (I'll still claim the Heathen label, most of the time), as most Asatru kindreds don't allow hailing Loki at all. Won't acknowledge him, treat him like a demon or the equivalent of Satan. There are many, many Pagans within certain subsections who criticize people who honor gods like Loki or the Egyptian god Set.

I actually find it more hurtful to deal with the comments from fellow Pagans. At least I can understand when monotheists act the way they do. But I will never be able to understand this incessant need that some Pagans have to tell other people the right/wrong way to practice or which gods are the "right" and "wrong" ones to worship. Or the ones that have told me, point-blank, that I can't use the label "Heathen" because "that's not how that's done."

I've had customers decide they didn't want a nasty Witch touching their dear aunt sally who passed away suddenly.  Some of them, AFTER we had already prepared the body.  Which they then assumed that they didn't have to pay us.  Uhmm...  it doesn't work that way.

I had one EXTREME Christian and his congergation protest outside of work.  I threatened to curse them all then started muttered some jiberrish.  They scattered pretty quickly.  I had one guy come in - he had prearranged his services with us.  After he found out that I'm not Christian (although we will accomadate any religion), he marched into my office, yelled that he'd rather drop dead in a pit of lava before he let me touch his dead body.  He had a massive stroke and quite literally dropped dead.  I had nothing to do with that, I promise. 

And see I'm like this.  I don't run the street shouting at the top of my lungs.  But at the same time, if someone asks, I don't deny it, neither.
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #72 on: August 05, 2017, 04:31:37 am »
Have any of you suffered discrimination as a pagan?

I would not use the term "discrimination", as it implies that I have experienced suffering when others "attack" my spiritual-religious views.  Peoples' hatred, confusion, ignorance, or jealousy towards religions they fear, disapprove of, or do not understand is perfectly understandable to me.

That said, other pagans tend not to like that YHVH is worshipped as the supreme God in my pantheon and as such often do not consider me "pagan".  They tend not to approve of or understand my system's inclusion of certain Abrahamic culture and lore.  As if I need their approval, lol.  Abrahamists tend not to like that my own YHVH worship is part of a polytheistic spiritual-religious system, a system that worships various forces of nature and human Nature, and includes ancient Mesopotamian deities as well as certain "angels", "demons", "devils", etc who may be worshipped as gods.  As such these people often do not consider me a YHVH worshipper and might passionately express their disapproval.

People who identify as LHP often do not approve of my YHVH worship.  Even devil worshippers who might approve of Lilith and Samael being worshipped in my pantheon may denounce me for worshipping YHVH as well. 

There is no pleasing everyone.  People may disagree and disapprove, even passionately disagree and disapprove, but "discrimination" is not the word I would use to describe anything I have experienced, religiously.  They have their culture, their Weltanschauung, their spiritual-religious systems and internal universes... mine will never exist in perfect harmony with all of them and I completely accept that, and prefer it that way.  Besides... unless people have been exposed to my writings or artwork, they have almost no way of knowing anything about my spiritual-religious system.  I can easily blend in and adapt to my environment, and utilize people's perceptions of me to my advantage.  There is no reason at all to allow a source of great strength to become a weakness.
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #73 on: August 05, 2017, 09:36:33 am »
I had one guy come in - he had prearranged his services with us.  After he found out that I'm not Christian (although we will accomadate any religion), he marched into my office, yelled that he'd rather drop dead in a pit of lava before he let me touch his dead body.  He had a massive stroke and quite literally dropped dead.  I had nothing to do with that, I promise.

I believe you. The good news is that he probably truly was a Christian—as opposed to one of the many who may go to church but who will eventually hear my God say, "I never knew you." I've heard enough stories of this kind to come to the conclusion that a true child of God who really goes off the rails usually gets brought home for a talking-to sooner rather than later. The ones who REALLY have cause to worry are those who bring shame upon the name of Christ who don't get called to the woodshed—either in this world or the next—in a timely manner. (Think, "Westboro".)

Personally, I'd rather do business with someone who is honest about being a witch than with someone who is lying about being a Christian.
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Re: Have You Ever Suffered Discrimination As A Pagan?
« Reply #74 on: November 21, 2017, 10:36:32 am »
Within the Pagan community, I have had to constantly deal with people telling me how I can't honor Loki (I'm his priest, I'm pretty sure that's required). I've had to listen to people tell me he's not a god at all, had to read scholarly articles about how he was a literary device, and other such things.

Wut.

Suuure.

A literary device, and technologically advanced Trojan warriors who deceived the poor barbarians.

And the Irish ones are also advanced foreign warriors (they're immortal by accident).

And Väinämöinen is just an Iron Age shaman, like Lönnrot said

And so on and on


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Board Coordinator:
Darkhawk

Assistant Board Coordinator:
Aster Breo

Senior Staff:
Aisling, Jenett, Sefiru

Staff:
Allaya, Chatelaine, EclecticWheel, HarpingHawke, Kylara, PerditaPickle, rocquelaire

Discord Chat Staff
Chat Coordinator:
Morag

Cauldron Council:
Bob, Catja, Emma-Eldritch, Fausta, Jubes, Kelly, LyricFox, Phouka, Sperran, Star, Steve, Tana

Site Administrator:
Randall