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Author Topic: Am I putting too much into this?  (Read 569 times)

Kimberly

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Am I putting too much into this?
« on: January 08, 2013, 08:51:44 pm »
"Wicca is a very decentralized religion; many Wiccans develop their own beliefs, rituals, and other practices. The latter are often not known outside the solitary practitioner or Wiccan coven."

Is this basically true?  I've come from a Christian background where you are told what to believe, what to do, how to do it and when to do it.  So venturing into a new religion is scary.  

My beliefs are very earth centered.  I believe in spirits both masculine and feminine who guide us through our lives but are not in control of us.  I believe that every object both breathing and non-breathing has it's own unique energy and when we come in contact with it we are then forever connected with it in at least some way.  I believe in Karma (the energy you put out is the energy you get back).  What tradition does this sound like to you?

Maybe I'm putting too much emphasis on the traditions.  Maybe I shouldn't care what tradition I fall into, but it sure would be nice to answer someone when they actually do ask what kind of Pagan I am.

This quote by a notable Unitarian Universalist (which I am a member of) is one of my favorites.  "The Earth is my Mother and the Sun is my Father.  When my Father rises in the morning, my Mother and Father embrace, and out of their union comes everything that I eat, everything that I wear, everything that I live in.  It doesn't need to be any more complicated than that.  The deeper the root goes into darkness, the more light the tree discovers.  I am--we are all--surrounded by the fruits of light and darkness, for which I give thanks to the Mother, the Father, and the Living Spirit of All." (by Utah Phillips)
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better.  It\'s not."  --Dr. Seuss
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MadZealot

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Re: Am I putting too much into this?
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2013, 09:00:35 pm »
Quote from: Kimberly;89803
"Wicca is a very decentralized religion; many Wiccans develop their own beliefs, rituals, and other practices. The latter are often not known outside the solitary practitioner or Wiccan coven."


True for eclectic and neo-Wiccan traditions.  British Traditional Wicca has a specific set of beliefs and practices however.
Oh, is it time again to say "Fuck Trump gently in the ear with a swarm of pissed-off hornets?"?

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Juniper

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Re: Am I putting too much into this?
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2013, 09:10:11 pm »
Quote from: Kimberly;89803
"Wicca is a very decentralized religion; many Wiccans develop their own beliefs, rituals, and other practices. The latter are often not known outside the solitary practitioner or Wiccan coven."

Is this basically true?  I've come from a Christian background where you are told what to believe, what to do, how to do it and when to do it.  So venturing into a new religion is scary.


There is some truth to that statement, although to me Wicca means British Tradional Wicca and from what I understand a lot of their practices are pretty set in stone. I refer to some of my beliefs as Neo-Wiccan because I want to emphasise the differences between my own path and that of someone who is part of British Traditional Wicca (the most prominent of these being the Gardnerian or Alexandrian covens).


Quote from: Kimberly;89803

My beliefs are very earth centered.  I believe in spirits both masculine and feminine who guide us through our lives but are not in control of us.  I believe that every object both breathing and non-breathing has it's own unique energy and when we come in contact with it we are then forever connected with it in at least some way.  I believe in Karma (the energy you put out is the energy you get back).  What tradition does this sound like to you?

Maybe I'm putting too much emphasis on the traditions.  Maybe I shouldn't care what tradition I fall into, but it sure would be nice to answer someone when they actually do ask what kind of Pagan I am.


I understand your want of a sense of belonging, but at the same time it is extremely rare to find an already established belief system that will fit in perfectly with your own beliefs. It's possible to find a close match, but an exact fit? Not likely I'm afraid. And there's nothing wrong with that. Having a good idea of what your beliefs are and being willing to put the time in to study what is already out there is a great start.
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Juniper

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Re: Am I putting too much into this?
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2013, 09:29:39 pm »
Quote from: Juniper;89807
There is some truth to that statement, although to me Wicca means British Tradional Wicca


That, obviously, is supposed to say Traditional   :ashamed:
"I\'ve seen fake gods, and bad gods, and demigods and would-be gods; out of all that, out of that whole pantheon,
 if I believe in one thing... just one thing... I believe in her."

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Shine

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Re: Am I putting too much into this?
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2013, 09:35:13 pm »
Quote from: Kimberly;89803
My beliefs are very earth centered.  I believe in spirits both masculine and feminine who guide us through our lives but are not in control of us.  I believe that every object both breathing and non-breathing has it's own unique energy and when we come in contact with it we are then forever connected with it in at least some way.  I believe in Karma (the energy you put out is the energy you get back).  What tradition does this sound like to you?

Maybe I'm putting too much emphasis on the traditions.  Maybe I shouldn't care what tradition I fall into, but it sure would be nice to answer someone when they actually do ask what kind of Pagan I am.


Your beliefs sound like a cross between (neo-)Wicca and some kind of eclectic. Many forms of Wicca are very earth-centered (I would hesitate to say all of them, not being well-versed in the variations between traditions). Karma comes from Sanatana Dharma/Hinduism and various splinter religions such as Buddhism, Sikhism, and Jainism. Your understanding of it sounds Wiccish to me.

You're a new pagan, correct? Give yourself some time to experiment, experience, and allow your beliefs to expand and grow. You may find that your beliefs change over time--actually, they probably will--and fall into a convenient slot with a name and community built in.

Or you may not. You may find yourself in the interstices between this tradition and that tradition. For example, I currently find myself between Kemeticism and Hinduism, reconstructionism and syncretism. I've found it helpful to step away from names of traditions and towards "isms".

Monism, pantheism, panentheism, duotheism, henotheism, kathenotheism, agnosticism, atheism, hard polytheism, soft polytheism, monotheism, etc. These words don't "belong" to any one tradition in particular; however, there are traditions that subscribe to certain "isms". If you know what "ism" you are, you may have luck finding yourself a tradition after some time. It will still take time. Your personal "ism" may change over time, and you can mix 'n' match some of them. For example, it's possible to be a pantheist and a polytheist.

Think about it for as long as you need to, then think about it some more.
 
Keep reading, reevaluating your beliefs, and trying new things. You'll find a name for yourself in good time. :)
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Aster Breo

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Re: Am I putting too much into this?
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2013, 09:40:06 pm »
Quote from: Kimberly;89803

Maybe I'm putting too much emphasis on the traditions.  Maybe I shouldn't care what tradition I fall into, but it sure would be nice to answer someone when they actually do ask what kind of Pagan I am.

 
I think this is a fairly common sentiment, especially among people who are new-ish to paganism.  But, for many of us, that need for a label wears off.

In all the years I've identified as pagan, no one has EVER asked me "what kind of pagan I am."  I thinks that's probably because most pagans can figure it out themselves (or I volunteer the information) and most non-pagans have no idea that there are different kinds.

YMMV, of course.

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