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My basic beliefs as a Pagan

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Paganism is a broad definition of religion including followers of most polytheistic religions. Most commonly, however, the word Pagan is used in reference to people who follow European Magickal traditions. "Pagan" is taken from the Latin "Paganus," meaning "country dweller."

Pagan beliefs vary from tradition to tradition, though whether Gardnerian, Alexandrian, Wittan, or any other form of Paganism, most modern Pagans follow some form of this "rule." While many Pagans have their own lawset, the principles are usually quite similar.

Bide the Wiccan Law ye must,
In perfect love and perfect trust.
Eight words the Wiccan Rede fulfill:
An' ye harm none, do what ye will.

What ye send forth comes back to thee
So ever mind the law of three.
Follow this with mind and heart,
Merry ye meet, and merry ye part.

Put in simple terms, these rules mean that you do whatever you want to, as long as it doesn't cause harm to anyone, including yourself, and that whatever good or evil you do will be returned to you three times. There is one provision here, you can harm one to save others, so self defense and military service are fine (Though that is not a universal opinion, just mine).

A more detailed set of Pagan laws, The 12 Aetheling Thews (princely virtues) apply more specifically to the Nordic traditions, and I include them here as another example of pagan guidelines.

I worship two main Deities, A Mother Goddess and a Father God, and belive that all religions are valid to their adherents. That is why people like me don't proselytize (Translation=stand on street corners waving religious texts and shouting "Repent, Sinners!"). As firm believers in freedom of choice, we know that if you want to learn the Craft, you will come to us in time, and if you don't, then you won't appreciate our asking you to "join up."

The Goddess is symbolized the Moon in it's three stages, wherin we get the three aspects of the Goddess, the Maiden (waxing moon), the Mother (full moon), and the Crone (waning moon). These associations represent the stages of life. As the Maiden, the Goddess represents Spring and growth, as the Mother, the Goddess stands for family, companionship, and maternal instinct, and as the crone, the Goddess is the font of wisdom, and the wise woman of the woods.

The God is symbolized by the Sun, the wild animals, and the harvest. He is also known as The Horned God, to show his ties to animals and the hunt. He is associated with planting, harvesting, and war. He is also tied to the cycle of the sun, meaning that He is born at Yule (Dec. 21st), grows throughout the Spring, and reaches the peak of His Power in the Summer. As Autumn nears, He begins to wane, and with the passing harvests, grows older, and finally, at Samhain (Hallowe'en), he dies. He then goes to the Goddess' cauldron to await His rebirth at Yule.

I don't worship the Devil ... I don't even believe he exists. Pagans acknowledge both the light and dark aspect of their own Gods, and therefore have no need of a pure light God to fend off a purely evil being. Satan is a creation of the Christian church, and Satanism is a heresy of the same, and therefore neither has any place in Pagan religions. I must note that though some Pagan religions have "evil" Gods, even they are good for something.

Pagan Holidays are based on the Solar Year and the cycles of the Moon. We celebrate the 13 full moons and the eight Sabbats, Yule (Winter Solstice), Imbolc (Feb. 2), Ostara (Spring Equinox), Beltane, (Apr. 30), Midsummer (Summer Solstice), Lughnasadh (Aug. 1), Mabon (Autumn Equinox), and Samhain (Oct. 31). There are many names for these holidays, These are simply the ones I use.

It is on these days that Witches gather together and work magick. For those of you who have seen "The Craft," I don't levitate, throw fireballs, magick up snakes, or any of those other foolish things. I call on the Gods for the same reasons that Christians call on their God. Support, healing, and help.

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