Looking Back: The Year in Review at HP

It’s been a great year here at HP.  Here are some of the highlights …

1.  Our New Look

If you’re here, you’ve noticed the new look.  The changes to the site are not just cosmetic.  We’ve added new articles on the front page of the site which we hope will help educate others about Humanistic Paganism.

2.  New Writers

Mark Green has joined us as a regular columnist.  His column is An Atheopagan Life: Practices and musings of an Earth-honoring atheist, a monthly column about living an atheist, nature-honoring life.  And Crafter Yearly has begun writing book reviews for us.  In addition, all of our regular columnists, Bart Everson, Jon Cleland Host, Maggie Jay Lee, and Glen Gordon will continue writing for us next year, and Eric Steinhart will be wrapping up his 8-part series “The Wheel of Evolution”.

3.  Our Naturalistic Creed

You may remember that, back in July, we conducted a survey to help articulate a Naturalistic Creed.  And this was the result …

Life is our religion.

The Universe is our deity. 

Science is our theology. 

The Earth is our temple.

Nature is our scripture. 

Evolution is our creation story. 

All truth is our creed.

A life of compassion and service is our offering.

 4.  New Friends

HP continues to connect with others who are creating their own Naturalistic Pagan traditions.  Eric Saumur and Brandon Sanders are contributing members of the SolSeed Movement, and both Eric and Brandon have joined HP as contributors.  Mark Green is the founder Atheopaganism, and has joined HP as a columnist.

We have over 70 contributors now.  We published our 500th post this year and are now approaching 600.

5.  Draft Pagan Community Statement on the Environment

Many of HP’s contributors have been active in working the Draft Pagan Community Statement on the Environment, including Rua Lupa, Eric Saumur, Jon Cleland Host, Bart Everson, as well as friends Glenys Livingstone of PaGaian Cosmology, ecopsychologist Adrian Harris, and author Brendan Myers.  The group anticipates posting the draft statement by Spring Equinox 2015 for public comment.

6.  HP’s managing editor was interviewed on Pagan Radio Tonight

I was honored to be interviewed by Jason Mankey on Raise the Horns Radio/Pagan Radio Tonight.  Jason asked about Humanistic Paganism, among other topics.  You can listen to the complete interview here.  (The interview begins at time stamp 1:11:00.)

7.  We successfully met our fundraising goal

Thank you to everyone who contributed, both large and small.  We were able to place an add at The Wild Hunt for another year, which helps spread the news about Humanistic Paganism, while also supporting profession journalism within the Pagan community.

Next year, we will be adding the option of placing a graphical ad on the HP sidebar for contributions of $100 or more.

8.  Bart Everson added music to our repetoir

Bart Everson has been supplying HP with great playlists for each of the seasonal celebrations.  Check our Bart’s Lammas, Fall Equinox, and Yule-themed selections.

9.  HP’s influence is spreading

When I started as managing editor for HP, one of my goals for 2014 was to see more open participation by Naturalistic Pagans in Pan-Pagan events.  I am pleased to report that HP Columnist Mark Green and Áine Anderson have secured a place and time for an Atheopagan Open House in the Pagan Scholar’s Suite at Pantheacon in February 2015.  Mark will presenting an Atheopagan workshop and ritual.  I’ll be attending, as will other HP friends.  I hope that we will be able to obtain a (highly coveted) place in the official scheduling in future years.

HP Columnist Bart Everson was invited to give a guest lecture at Loyola in New Orleans for a class on Religion and Ecology on the topic of Neo-Pagan perspectives on environment.  His presentation was entitled “Ecology & Religion: Humanistic and Pagan Perspectives”.  Bart reported that his presentation received a positive response.

If anyone else has an opportunity to share a Humanistic Pagan perspective in a group setting, be sure to let me know at humanisticpaganism [at] gmail [dot] com.

10.  HP continues to grow

We have over 1000 followers (on WordPress and e-mail) and additional RSS followers.  We are now averaging over 10,000 page views a month and our Facebook posts reach over 30,000 people.  Most of our referrals come from search engines and Facebook, followed by Patheos and The Wild Hunt.

I want to express a special thank you to NaturalPantheist who maintains our Facebook pages.  If you missed it we now have a Facebook group page, in addition to a Facebook interest page.  Be sure to join the group page if you haven’t already.

If there are other changes or improvements you would like to see at HP, please email me at humanisticpaganism [at] gmail [dot] com.

Thank you all for a great 2014.  I look forward to interacting with you next year!

John Halstead, Managing Editor

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