Naturalistic Paganism

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The Earth, The Gods, and the Soul by Brendan Myers, a review by John Halstead

Brendan Myers’s book The Earth, The Gods, and the Soul is like candy for a philosophy lover like me.  If philo-sophy is the “love of wisdom”, then I am a lover of the lover of wisdom, a philo-philosophe.  And a book…

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Axiarchism and Paganism, Part 1 by Eric Steinhart

Today we continue our late-winter theme of “Order and Structure” with Eric Steinhart’s discussion of Axiarchism and Paganism.  This essay is broken into two parts.  In Part 1, which is posted today, Eric Steinhert lays out the basic motivations for axiarchism. In Part…

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Yes, Virginia, I’m a Pagan Atheist, by Jeffrey Flagg

All of this is to say that I find the question of the gods being “real,” and indeed discussions of their ontological nature in general, somewhat silly. It doesn’t matter if they’re “real” if they’re meaningful. So, yes, I am an atheist because I don’t believe in the existence of a deity. I’m also, however, a Pagan, because I have a personal relationship to the same things that Pagans have relationships to. Once you get past the word games of ontology, being an atheist Pagan isn’t so silly after all.

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Musings of a Pagan Mythicist, by Maggie Jay Lee: “Gnothi Seauton: On Being Human”

Gnothi seauton is an important pillar of my sense of spirituality. Gnothi seauton calls me to accept reality, not as I wish it to be, but as it really is. It reminds me that my understanding of reality will always be imperfect and incomplete. Yet gnothi seauton challenges me to strive to know and understand to my fullest ability.

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The archetypes are gods: Re-godding the archetypes, by John Halstead

As Neopagan discourse moves increasingly in the direction of radical polytheism, those Humanistic or Naturalistic Neopagans who find this position rationally untenable may find themselves (more) marginalized in the Neopagan community. The pendulum which previously swung to the humanistic extreme by reducing the gods to symbols is now swinging to the other extreme of transcendental theism, denying that the gods are part of the human psyche. Jung’s theory of archetypes offers us an opportunity to create a golden mean between these two extremes, one which may simultaneously satisfy the humanist or naturalist who sees the gods as products of the human psyche, while also satisfying the mystical longing for contact with a numimous Other which is greater than any creation of our conscious mind.

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