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6 years ago  ::  May 07, 2009 - 1:53PM #1
Redhawk333
Posts: 5

Peace and Love,


My brothers and sisters I wanted to share with you a thought, an idea, an impression on my heart. I have come to realize in trying to self-identify that there has been much debate upon the meaning and differences in what being pagan means. That is all and well...certainly, it has its place. But for a moment I'd like to step back and let go of all the technical details, the definitions, the differences in doctrine and hear again your Soul Song; that which sings to your soul and drew you to where you are now. We can at times lose sight because of the proverbial "trees" prevent our seeing. My heart sings with love for you all as I recognize we are all one and one in all. For me this is what the Mother Goddess is trying to teach me...stop for a moment and just Be. Our ancestors were great observers of nature...I want to strive to do less talking and more listening and watching. Sometimes we must get out of our own way...for just a bit to reconnect with the Earth Mother. May you all remember your Soul Song and let it Sing for eternity.

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6 years ago  ::  May 07, 2009 - 4:24PM #2
gorm-sionnach
Posts: 1,663
It is hard to watch nature on a discussion forum no? ;)

If you'd rather sit and watch, and not contribute to the discussion by all means do so, but without discourse, what then is the point of such a forum?

I appreciate the sentiment, but glossing over differences can lead to more harm than good, not to mention discord. Why not celebrate the differences, rather than ignore them?

Keep in mind not all Pagans believe in a universal Goddess.
Truth in our hearts, Strength in our arms, Fulfillment in our tongues.
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6 years ago  ::  May 09, 2009 - 5:44PM #3
CreakyHedgewitch
Posts: 1,244

Redhawk333,


I appreciate that you are striving to share a pivotal experience for you and that compassion for others contributed to you taking the time to create this thread.


May I ask you to consider the following.


Our differences as Pagans are as much a part of what makes each of us self-identify as are those few commonalties that we may seem to share. Exploring these differences may seem to be a distraction to some from their 'Soul Song'. Yet if we are all one and one is all, then debate and discussion of about what makes us unique and different must remain as much a part of that Song as does any kind of inner listening. If we are all one and one is all, then whatever one defines as nature must also be all encompassing and one can never truly become disconnected. One may simply be that we are at different times listening more intently and intensely to different parts of that Song. Would not the Song then continue regardless of one's changing awareness?


To understand any kind of diversity, IMO one must discuss differences that exist as much as commonalties. For example, as a Dianic Pagan Witch, the Feminine Divine or Goddesses that I have relationships to bear little resemblance to broadly found but certainly not universal concepts such as the Earth Mother or the Mother Goddess. Discussion of such a difference even in this limited context broadens my perception beyond the circumference of my personal experiences and self-definition as a Pagan to include your perceptions as part overall of the possibilities within Paganism.


Does not debate itself demand that we consider the beliefs of others even when we do nothing more than point out how we differ? By expressing our differences about those experiences, do we not speak to what is unique to each of us while we acknowledge the uniqueness of others at the same time?


Perhaps that is why Pagans come to such message boards or chat line etc and strive to use this kind of a forum. Part of his or her Song as it were, whenever and whatever the topic.


Something to consider,


C.H.

No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.
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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 8:52AM #4
Redhawk333
Posts: 5

To all,


You've brought to mind great points...defining points. There is great importance in debating, communication, discussing the differences...the different flavors, colors that weave the tapestry of paganism. I savor the differences, and the similarities, but my point was missed by you. There are times when we become so diluted with debate, with technical knowledge, that we miss the more intuitive callings...that which sings to our souls. I do not generalize here, rather I point to that which has called to us all in its various forms (not JUST because I may call Goddess, Goddess or God, God; or whether I call my self Dianic Wiccan or Druid or Neo-pagan). YOU miss my intention of drawing ones awareness BACK to that spiritual essence that speaks to you and surpasses ALL mortal wisdom.


I must admit I felt "jumped on" for my making my post when, in all innocence, I wanted to share something I felt was important....and could possibly mean something to someone else. IF I have offended ANYONE, my apologies as that was not my intent.

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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 8:58AM #5
gorm-sionnach
Posts: 1,663

I think my eariler point stands; that being it is difficult to merely sit, watch and listen on a discussion forum, it is not a practical way to advance discourse (which after all it the purpose of such a forum.)


Now I took issue with the statement you made, only because it seemed to be over simplifying the rather complex milleau which is modern Paganism. I tend to balk at notions of universalism, so you will have to excuse me if I came off as heavy handed.

Truth in our hearts, Strength in our arms, Fulfillment in our tongues.
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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 9:20AM #6
Redhawk333
Posts: 5

May 7, 2009 -- 4:24PM, gorm-sionnach wrote:

It is hard to watch nature on a discussion forum no? ;) If you'd rather sit and watch, and not contribute to the discussion by all means do so, but without discourse, what then is the point of such a forum? I appreciate the sentiment, but glossing over differences can lead to more harm than good, not to mention discord. Why not celebrate the differences, rather than ignore them? Keep in mind not all Pagans believe in a universal Goddess.



Yes, it is difficult. As I spend less time here and most time outside...as I live on a 1, 000 acre ranch.


But more to the point. You make strong assumptions...and you know the danger of assuming things, right? I shall not sit by like moss on a log and not "contribute"...I am offended by you pious assumption. "Glossing over", to me, means ignoring the importance of something and this is NOT what I have done. Rather, I have said to set aside all your precoceptions and listen to your heart and to that which initially sung to your heart...to that which initially drew you to where you are now...to that which started you down this path. Now that is not an idle "glossing over" rather an inclusion of differences. I am surprised you couldnt see this.


I think the general point of my post is this: Some years ago, after graduating college and beginning to work in my given field, I had a supervisor who told me,  "Now that you have studied the textbooks, sat through the lectures, debated theory and phiolosophy; its time to, in a way, unlearn what you have learned and put it into practice in real life." Further, there is often a great gap between theory and practice. Theory is an attempt to frame up, define a greater phenomena or experience...being that paganism is experiential both the attempt at definition and the experience are vital. I am merely pointing out that we should not become so focused on defining that we forget what drew us to where we are.


I hope this is clear as I am a bit upset and being that I am a more emotional/intuitive person than an analytical/literal/linear thinking person I tend to wander in my writing as my thoughts and emotions wax/wane.

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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 9:27AM #7
Redhawk333
Posts: 5

May 7, 2009 -- 1:53PM, Redhawk333 wrote:


Peace and Love,


My heart sings with love for you all as I recognize we are all one and one in all.




To explain: as life is interdependent and is effected by all life forms, so we are found in one and one in all. We believe different things but we are all still life forms here on earth and in that commonality we can find ourselves, even in our differences, in one another. This isnt a mere "glossing over" of the unique individuality of our beings but a celebration of our humanity, or life on earth.

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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 9:34AM #8
Redhawk333
Posts: 5

May 11, 2009 -- 8:58AM, gorm-sionnach wrote:


I think my eariler point stands; that being it is difficult to merely sit, watch and listen on a discussion forum, it is not a practical way to advance discourse (which after all it the purpose of such a forum.)


Now I took issue with the statement you made, only because it seemed to be over simplifying the rather complex milleau which is modern Paganism. I tend to balk at notions of universalism, so you will have to excuse me if I came off as heavy handed.




True, it is hard to observe on a forum. But I wasnt speaking to or about a forum, I was speaking in larger terms of everyday life. To become observant and take note, to listen closely and hear that which sings to your heart.


It is a complex milleau, one I greatly respect for all the differences. But there is always a starting point; an experience, that sparks ones spirit..gives guidance to a particular path and it is to that I speak...not forgetting that.


Ah, yes, see and I am more universal in thought by nature...no harm done here. I appreciate your openness. May you find blessings.

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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 9:56AM #9
gorm-sionnach
Posts: 1,663

May 11, 2009 -- 9:20AM, Redhawk333 wrote:


But more to the point. You make strong assumptions...and you know the danger of assuming things, right? I shall not sit by like moss on a log and not "contribute"...I am offended by you pious assumption. "Glossing over", to me, means ignoring the importance of something and this is NOT what I have done. Rather, I have said to set aside all your precoceptions and listen to your heart and to that which initially sung to your heart...to that which initially drew you to where you are now...to that which started you down this path. Now that is not an idle "glossing over" rather an inclusion of differences. I am surprised you couldnt see this.



Pious? How can what I said be misconstrued as pious? You said you wanted to set aside differences, thats a prety clear case of glossing over, by making the assumption that everyone came to where they are now by similar means. There are differences, they are important, they should not be set aside.


]I think the general point of my post is this: Some years ago, after graduating college and beginning to work in my given field, I had a supervisor who told me,  wrote:

I think the general point of my post is this: Some years ago, after graduating college and beginning to work in my given field, I had a supervisor who told me,  "Now that you have studied the textbooks, sat through the lectures, debated theory and phiolosophy; its time to, in a way, unlearn what you have learned and put it into practice in real life." Further, there is often a great gap between theory and practice. Theory is an attempt to frame up, define a greater phenomena or experience...being that paganism is experiential both the attempt at definition and the experience are vital. I am merely pointing out that we should not become so focused on defining that we forget what drew us to where we are.



Again you make the assumption that what drew me to Paganism are the same things which drew you. I highly doubt that what drew each of us to Paganism is the same thing. This again is why I take issuse with universialist posistions, motivations differ from person to person.

Truth in our hearts, Strength in our arms, Fulfillment in our tongues.
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6 years ago  ::  May 11, 2009 - 8:18PM #10
CreakyHedgewitch
Posts: 1,244

Redhawk,


Actually I did not miss your point. I merely asked you to consider other perspectives regarding the issue that you raised.


I agree that no one should become so focused on defining that he or she forgets what resonates for him or her spiritually. In a message forum however where a Pagan might actually be there to discuss or debate definitions, such participation perhaps should not be interpreted as necessarily being an overwhelming focus that would somehow unbalance a participant's overall spirituality. The latter is rarely visible through such a medium and their participation online may indeed constitute a minor role in their lives.


The extreme in the other direction such as a lack of defining or an inability or unwillingness to define often scatters that 'intuitive' resonance/awareness and may turn such into something more like self-indulgence. Spirituality and awareness requires ever changing balancing. Indeed one of the generalities that are commonly found amongst self-identified Pagans is self-responsibility and for the self 'to-have-the-ability-to-respond requires that each individual constantly seek balancing amongst all the events in his or life, a balancing that will be unique to each person.


Your theories do seem to have an Eastern resonance behind them, IMO. Do your beliefs not require an underlying division between the intuitive from the physical, the sacred from the mundane? Or perhaps are you simply approaching these theories from the viewpoint of extremes? If so, a too-focused perspective from either that of definition/technicalities or non-definable/intuition would be rather at variance with much that underlies modern Paganism.


No doubt there will be those who will benefit from such a reminder as you have provided. I have no wish to discourage you or anyone from acting from compassion for others. I might only suggest that you might be wise to position your choice of words and phraseology in such ways that do not imply a universal need for such a reminder.


C.H.

No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.
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