last night i attended the first meeting of a pagan study group convened by my dear friend rose. it was wonderful to see old friends there.... kim and heather and louise...and a couple new faces... lora, stacey and (another) annie. no men... though rose promised she'd work on conjuring a few for us. ( i asked Beloved if he wanted to check it out... he said - maybe.)
why call yourself a pagan, rose asked? what exactly does that mean to you?
this is my answer.
the word "pagan" comes from the latin word "pagannus" which means country-dweller. in the roman world, it connoted someone who lived way off the beaten track, removed from the world of the City, the hub of all that mattered, at least to the romans. by the time it was adopted by the early church to label unbelievers, it already had a perjorative cast to it, sort of like redneck.
because my spiritual path has led me beyond the boundaries of organized and accepted religions, because i feel that i have outgrown the creeds of my fathers (and my mothers), the word "pagan" fits. for me, no one human belief structure can possibly encompass the Enormity of what i sense Spirit/Source to be. in order for me to even begin to wrap my mind around All of what the Eternal Is, i acknowledge that every spiritual system contains truth. most of them, at least the dominant ones today, are flawed because they've been coopted to support other kinds of cultural systems that have nothing to with spiritual belief or practice and have a lot to do with controlling people.
out here on the rim, however, the Voices are clearer, the Light is brighter. the footing can be shaky, but the view is always grand.
my dear friend rose calls herself a recovering rigid. i guess i could call myself a religious redneck. :)