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posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 01:44 AM
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reply to post by forestlady
 


I am of the personal opinion that any attempt to manipulate the world through "convincing" or "imposing your will" upon spirits is not good, as I believe the only spirits that would respond to such calls are by their very nature evil.

However, I respect your right to practice your religion in any way or manner that you choose, and you have every right to "cast spells" on anyone who agrees to it. I strongly believe in freedom of religion, and I also believe that everyone has a right to agree or disagree on the morality of everyone else's religion. People call my religion (Christianity) evil all the time. I think they are wrong, but they have every right to pronounce it as such. And I'm quite sure you think I'm wrong, else you wouldn't do what you do.

And yes, I've studied pagan, neopagan, wicca, and other new age religion (depending on your academic perspective, neopaganism and wiccan could be classified as new age) and its related ceremonial and ritual magic in an academic environment. It confirmed my perspective, and I was being taught by a professor who happened to also be a witch - so I assure you my perspective was not "tainted" by someone opposed to it.

[edit on 11-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]




posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 02:05 AM
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Originally posted by forestlady
My ancestors were burned at the stake by people like you


That has so many factual and logical errors in so short a phrasing. Kudos.

Your ancestors (plural) were burned at the stake? Because they were members of a witch cult, Catholic suppression blah blah blah I am guessing.

Since they were your ancestors, as opposed to simply family members, how fortunate for us all it was that your exact genetic line managed to escape the incinerating forces repeatedly.

I find it highly offensive that the witch cult research has resulted in the current witch craze, delightfully divorced from the slightest shred of historicity or fact, and feeling itself fully entitled to appropriate from the Jewish people the historical context of a Holocaust. How dare you "pagans", one and all, do that.

The Burning Times Never Again is more like The Burning Times Never Happened. The whole Buffy the Vampire Slayer inspired wiccan rubbish is nothing more than a way for the disaffected and the decadent to appropriate the culture and trappings of people and cultures who have genuinely experienced a historical tradition.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 02:07 AM
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Originally posted by Roark
Doghead:

If Magick's goal is to expand the consciousness, how can it be "provably unsuccessful"?



That is one big IF isn't it? I would have thought the goal of casting some spell would be to have the spell work. Apologists for the belief "system" involved can preach self-improvement all they like, in terms of casting spells it's nonsense and any remotely objective observer can prove it.

New Age mysticism is both original and good; where good it is not original and where original is not good. Apologies to Winston Churchill.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 07:26 AM
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So you deny that the Catholic Church burned/tortured to death anyone that they considered heretical, be they a witch,alchemist or a scientist? I think history proves you wrong.Maybe we should all go back to the days where we forced people to recant FACTS such as the earth revolving around the sun.Mind you I have reverence for and no hatred of Christianity, however institutionalized theocratic states that control the dissemination of knowledge in order to keep people in the dark as to reality aren't inherently good either.The Catholic Church has a long and bloody history of eliminating those who they deem a threat.

Look at the Knights Templar, what a smear campaign, hundreds of years later the Church admits that the Templars did no wrong, and you can buy the records of it for thousands of dollars.Apparently the Church and King had their eyes on the coffers of the Templars, so it was decided that they should be accused of absurdities from having a talking head, worshiping Baphomet, homosexuality, spitting on the cross etc, and burned at the stake.Lets not paint a rosy picture of Christianity and gloss over the deaths.Also, lets not overlook esoteric ritual elements in Catholicism, as you bash neopagans.

Jesus had a wonderful message, its just a shame that so many of his followers don't work their hardest to follow it.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 08:18 AM
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Originally posted by DogHead


That is one big IF isn't it? I would have thought the goal of casting some spell would be to have the spell work. Apologists for the belief "system" involved can preach self-improvement all they like, in terms of casting spells it's nonsense and any remotely objective observer can prove it.


Ceremonial Magicians do not "cast spells". Again, it is important to not allow an unbiased look to be influenced by Hollywood.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 08:37 AM
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reply to post by DogHead
 


Your hatred is so deep that you are completely refusing any and all historical facts about Pagans. Paganism was the first religion humans ever practiced, along with Shamanism.
You have shown a number of times that you don't even know what you're talking about.
I feel sad for you, with all that hatred in your heart.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 10:42 AM
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Originally posted by forestlady
reply to post by DogHead
 


Your hatred is so deep that you are completely refusing any and all historical facts about Pagans. Paganism was the first religion humans ever practiced, along with Shamanism.
You have shown a number of times that you don't even know what you're talking about.
I feel sad for you, with all that hatred in your heart.


I disagree with DogHead, but I also have to say that believing that Paganism or Shamanism is the 'first religion' is somewhat naive.

Further, historical 'facts' are sometimes not facts at all; they're 'best guesses.' It's hard to do a historical 'connect the dots' and come up with a picture when all you've got it one or two dots.

Finally, religion - as in 'the oldest' - is kind of an over-broad thing. You mean first religion or first organized religion. Without that distinction, your answer is not going to be accurate.

Your pal,
Meat.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 01:29 PM
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Originally posted by mmmeat
I disagree with DogHead, but I also have to say that believing that Paganism or Shamanism is the 'first religion' is somewhat naive.

Meat.


Why do you think it is naive? I regularly read books by established authors/anthropologists/etc. and this is what they all say. It's pretty much the established opinion of scholar who study these things. Do you have
knowledge that anothe religion was first, and if so what is it? Please explain why you think this and tell us what religion did come first, in your opinion.



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 01:58 PM
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reply to post by forestlady
 


I have never read any scholarly reviewed article which proposed that the paganism practiced today has anything more than a very distant relation to ancient paganism. And even that relation does not exist for many variants of the religion now, like Wicca.

Most of the really "original" practices of tribal witchcraft and druidism have been lost to history either by accident or by intention. What is done today is based mostly upon new age concepts of spirituality and the piecing together of various and sundry historical theory/oral traditions about what the practitioners of ancient religion actually did.

But I'm not sure why it matters.

[edit on 11-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 02:36 PM
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reply to post by LightinDarkness
 


Well, if you will note, I said "Paganism is the oldest form of religion". I didn't say Neo-Paganism now did I? We have done our best to reconstruct a religion which was all but demolished by the Inquisition and witchburnings in the Middle Ages. I think you have misunderstood what I said.
Still, Paganism is the oldest religion, even if we might now know every single practice, we do know that much. Nothing naive about it, I've done my research. (I never claimed Wicca was an old religion either.)



posted on Jan, 11 2008 @ 02:45 PM
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reply to post by forestlady
 


Paganism may be the oldest form of religion, but it is not what you practice now. Never will be. Religion evolves, and paganism is no exception. The paganism of just a few thousand years ago is different from original druidism, etc. And as much as you'd like to blame it being "demolished" by the inquisition, you should redirect that toward other eastern and pagan religions which often locked into struggles to demolish each other. This is one thing you can't blame on Christianity. Tolerance was often NOT a virtue of paganism, and temples were often warring each other to win new converts.



[edit on 11-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 10:41 AM
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Originally posted by LightinDarkness
And as much as you'd like to blame it being "demolished" by the inquisition, you should redirect that toward other eastern and pagan religions which often locked into struggles to demolish each other. This is one thing you can't blame on Christianity. Tolerance was often NOT a virtue of paganism, and temples were often warring each other to win new converts. [edit on 11-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]


Could you explain what you're talking about? And could you provide sources? I can't respond to this because it's so vague. Are you talking about when the Barbarians were fighting with Genghis Khan, etc.? Because they were Pagan, too. Pagans have always been tolerant, it's what we're known for; we've never launched a war due to religion.
And the witch burnings WERE a holocaust, when that many people die just because they belong to a certain group, that is a holocaust. What is your definition?



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 10:47 AM
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Originally posted by forestlady

Originally posted by mmmeat
I disagree with DogHead, but I also have to say that believing that Paganism or Shamanism is the 'first religion' is somewhat naive.

Meat.


Why do you think it is naive? I regularly read books by established authors/anthropologists/etc. and this is what they all say. It's pretty much the established opinion of scholar who study these things. Do you have
knowledge that anothe religion was first, and if so what is it? Please explain why you think this and tell us what religion did come first, in your opinion.


I don't think it's naive, I know that it is.

You're confusing a set of thoroughly modern cult/spiritual practices with an all-encompassing term that is only all-encompassing to the neophyte: paganism.

To quote Inigo Montoya: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Paganism was (and still is, to a degree) a catch-all word - a stereotype, if you will - to the uninitiated for 'any religion that isn't monotheistic,' like Christianity, Judaism, or Islam. Sort of like how every meat that isn't pork- or beef-based tastes like chicken ... Just because it tastes like chicken doesn't mean it is chicken. And that's where many modern pagans get confused.

What you read and interpret isn't necessarily "what they all say," it's what you want them to all say. Any scientist, anthropologist or researcher worth his salt wouldn't get backed into that corner; new discoveries are made regularly that change how we 'connect the dots' of history.

There are many religions that some classify as pagan simply because they don't believe in the Christian, Judeo or Islamic God. Others classify polytheistic beliefs as being pagan. Most of the existing 'pagan' cults are based on ideology from the 1800s. But, at the end of the day, there are non-pagan monotheistic religions that are based on belief in one - for lack of a better term - god, and that god isn't from any of the three major religions. Throughout history people have worshipped bears. Dolphins. Their johnsons. Whatever. We've got proof of this. This doesn't make the cult of the bear pagan; it only makes it a religion older than shamanism and older than paganism.

Attempting to connect modern paganism to the past - beyond the Roman definition of pagan, which simply meant 'hillbilly religion' - is like attempting to connect modern Freemasonry to the builders of the pyramids. Sure, you could do it ... but it's not based on historical fact.

As far as your used of 'us' goes ... it's just you, baby. No matter how much you think everyone is agreeing with you, or how badly you want to be the spokesmodel for a group of people, or how many voices are clamoring for attention in your head ... you're the only person writing the post, and you're the only person who is looking for a response from me. Hate to burst your bubble, but it's kind of a flimsy bubble that doesn't stand up well. Sort of like the statement that paganism is the world's oldest religion.

Your pal,
Meat.



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 11:34 AM
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As informative as these alleged signs and logos may be, it still doesn't prove that someone who doesn't wear one is not part of some abusive group either.

The main issue, it would seem, is that this is part of some elite groups with double standards with children. Much the way some may not realize they've been hustled and cornered to the point of death threats etc.

Also, people may not realize that there is an elite culture that practices these events as some bizarre ritual of sacrifice and gaurranteed immunity as if playing both sides of the fence with the illusion of power.

Not much different than what some believe is demon possessed or one foot in hell and another in heaven. Biblically Jesus did mention about the hosts and the great hosts. I wouldn't necessarily condemn every unsuspecting member or person who wears some pin or logo though.

Unfortunately we are still part of the food chain and power pyramid in some form or another. You might be able to punish those who are possessed but you can't so easily punish demons who just find new victims to inhabit for a time. Many people blame the alcohol for their alleged deeds and missing time. But what if they were truly possessed?

I seriously doubt that if these actual posessions are true, is that we are safe in any organized group. The Catholic Church and it's problems may actually prove that point. Don't blame the messenger.



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 11:41 AM
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reply to post by forestlady
 


I would like to point you you have asked me for sources while you have provided none that say "the 'paganism' practiced today is the oldest religion in the world," even though you say this is true. Nonetheless, here you go:

1) There is nothing more than a cursory (at best) relationship between modern day practice of anything that calls itself pagan and the "first" religion of druidism and tribalism.

Hutton, R. (2000). Paganism and Polemic: The Debate over the Origins of Modern Pagan Witchcraft. Folklore, 111(1): 103-117.

Hutton, R. (1996). "The Roots of Modern Paganism" in Harvey & Hardman (eds.): 3-15.

York, M. (1999). Invented Culture/Invented Religion: The Fictional Origins of Contemporary Paganism. Nova Religio, 3(1): 135-146.

2) The actual practices of old religions - including ancient druidism and other things that are now put under the universal label of "paganism," were destroyed in large part by OTHER "pagan" religions. This is contrary to popular modern pagan belief that likes to put such blame on Christianity.

Bloch, H. (1945). A New Document of the Last Pagan Revival in the West, 393-394 A.D.
The Harvard Theological Review, 38(4): 199-244.

Hume, D. (1957). The Natural History of Religion. Kessinger: New York.

I could provide hundreds of peer reviewed articles and scholarly books, but that should do for now. You are being a historical revisionist if you think that early religions - which we now call pagan - were anything but tolerant and did not constantly kill each other over religion. It is quite simply historically wrong.

YOUR flavor of paganism may indeed be tolerant, but that is because it has no actual relationship with the ancient religions.

[edit on 12-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 12:08 PM
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Originally posted by LightinDarkness
reply to post by forestlady
 


I would like to point you you have asked me for sources while you have provided none that say "the 'paganism' practiced today is the oldest religion in the world," even though you say this is true. Nonetheless, here you go:

[edit on 12-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]


That is because I NEVER made that claim, nor do I believe Pagans are practicing what they did thousands of years ago. (Nor do Christians practice what they did 2,000 years ago.) I know better than that and I also know alot of the people/scholars that are trying to reconstruct Paganism through research. What I'm asking of you is, where is the evidence that Paganism destroyed itself or was destroyed by the East?

Quit trying to put words in my mouth to make me look ignorant.



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 12:27 PM
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Sorry, I totally missed your posts. Allow me to address them now:

Originally posted by forestlady
Well, if you will note, I said "Paganism is the oldest form of religion". I didn't say Neo-Paganism now did I? We have done our best to reconstruct a religion which was all but demolished by the Inquisition and witchburnings in the Middle Ages.

You are misinformed; paganism isn't a religion, it is a catch-all phrase for any religion that isn't one of the 'big three' religions that is used by abecedarians that don't understand it's actual meaning. There are many different forms and types of paganism, and - while some may be similar to others - they're all different. Calling paganism 'a religion' is the same as saying all the people living in the Middle East are Christians.

You may be building a religion based on practices cherry-picked from various belief systems that date base as far as the 1800s, but it's not 'paganism.' At best, it's going to be 'neo-paganism.'


Originally posted by forestlady
Could you explain what you're talking about? And could you provide sources? I can't respond to this because it's so vague. Are you talking about when the Barbarians were fighting with Genghis Khan, etc.? Because they were Pagan, too. Pagans have always been tolerant, it's what we're known for; we've never launched a war due to religion.

Celts started wars over religion. Vikings started wars over religion. Angles started wars over religion. Saxons started wars over religion. Anglo-Saxons started wars over religion. Greeks started wars over religion. Romans started wars over religion. Hell, most pagan societies had gods or pantheons of gods dedicated specifically to war.

Tolerant? The history of paganism is full of intolerance for any that didn't believe as they did. Just ask the Christians ... oh wait, you can't; they're lion food.


Originally posted by forestlady
And the witch burnings WERE a holocaust, when that many people die just because they belong to a certain group, that is a holocaust. What is your definition?

My definition of holocaust - the accepted definition - is 'completely destroyed by fire.' This is not to be confused with "The Holocaust" which is something completely different. Using the proper definition, a building burning down to nothing is a holocaust. A match burning all the way down is a holocaust. The last ember going out from a log after the chestnuts were roasted over it is a holocaust.

Witch burnings were not a holocaust, however. Witches were burned to death, their bodies dismembered and placed in graves.

Your pal,
Meat.



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 12:30 PM
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All I need to do is quote you:


Originally posted by forestlady
That is because I NEVER made that claim,



Originally posted by forestlady
My ancestors were burned at the stake by people like you



Originally posted by forestlady
Paganism was the first religion humans ever practiced


Since the poster you are responding to is talking about YOUR brand of paganism, you can't try to say "I WAS TALKING ABOUT THE FIRST PAGANS!" Well I guess you could, but your statements don't say that. In any case, I'm glad you agree.


What I'm asking of you is, where is the evidence that Paganism destroyed itself or was destroyed by the East?


I just provided scholarly peer reviewed journal articles, what more evidence do you want? While we're at it making demands for evidence, WHERE IS YOUR evidence?

Also, if you are going to call witch burnings a holocaust, I hope your also going to step up and be consistent and also admit that therefore EVERY world religion has been the victim of a holocaust. After all, Christians were used as torch's to light the imperial parties in Rome. I just don't get the victim mentality - every religion has been persecuted at some point in time - who cares?

[edit on 12-1-2008 by LightinDarkness]



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 12:49 PM
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Originally posted by forestlady
That is because I NEVER made that claim, nor do I believe Pagans are practicing what they did thousands of years ago.

That's true; you never directly said that. But you do keep making inferences that are similar in nature if not substance. You make claims that you practice paganism - and that paganism is the oldest religion. You attempt to link witch burning with the Holocaust (it was inept, but it was an attempt). So there are things you are indeed doing that - either through your intentional or unintentional writing - would lead some to the conclusion that what you're implying is that you practice the world's oldest religion.

Which is untrue.


Originally posted by forestlady
(Nor do Christians practice what they did 2,000 years ago.)

A clever attempt at misdirection, but ... no. Christianity isn't 2,000 years old. Yet.


Originally posted by forestlady
I know better than that and I also know alot of the people/scholars that are trying to reconstruct Paganism through research. What I'm asking of you is, where is the evidence that Paganism destroyed itself or was destroyed by the East?

I don't believe you've asked that question until just now.


Originally posted by forestlady
Quit trying to put words in my mouth to make me look ignorant.

I don't see that anyone here is attempting to do that. To paraphrase a famous Freemason, Samuel Langhorne Clemens (Mark Twain): "It is better to keep your mouth closed and be presumed ignorant than to open it and remove all doubt."

Your pal,
Meat.



posted on Jan, 12 2008 @ 01:00 PM
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reply to post by mmmeat
 


Christianity isn't 2000 years old? Can you please explain that? How do you figure?

Also, please provide sources that all these Pagan groups fought over religion. All of the groups you listed did fight alot, but it wasn't over religion. The Vikings for example didn't care who they raped, pillaged, and murdered; they did it because they liked it, not because they had an axe to grind. Some groups also fought for freedom to practice their religion as well.

Paganism IS a religion; just because you don't see it that way, doesn't make it so. It is like saying all the differaent Christian sects aren't really a religion because Christians believe different things. The basic premise is a nature-inspired religion; that is what connects all the different Pagan sects, just as Christianity does. Your argument doesn't make sense to me. I believe in my deities, Christians believe in theirs, as do Jews, Moslems, etc. That's what makes it a religion - believing in your deities.

One last thing: We have many scholars in our Pagan community, who have studied ancient texts, archaeology, etc. They are not revisionists and they know what they're talking about.

Light, using resources from 1956 really isn't a good source; much has been discovered since then.
You ask for sources: Marija Gimbutas and John and Caitlin Matthews are three.





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