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The anti-fluffy movement among Pagans

by Diane Vera

Copyright © 2003 by Diane Vera. All rights reserved.

Within Pagandom, there has arisen a movement against the "fluff-bunnies" who are seen as currently dominant in the Pagan scene.

As far as I can tell, "fluff-bunnies" are those who (1) present what other Pagans regard as an overly sweetness-and-light image of Wicca and/or Paganism; (2) still believe that Wicca is an intact "Old Religion," descended from prehistoric times via Margarent Murray's hypothetical underground "witch cult," though the more educated Wiccans have come to realize that Murray's "witch cult" probably never existed; (3) cling to ideological security blankets; and (4) have a general tendency toward intellectual laziness.

The anti-fluffy movement attracts a variety of people. Some are Pagan Reconstructionists who are dissatisfied with the predominance of Wiccans and Wiccaneque Pagans in the Pagan scene. (Pagan Reconstructionists are those who seek to reconstruct an actual ancient religion based on known history, in contrast to Wicca's synthesis of ideas from many religions both ancient and modern.) On the other hand, the anti-fluffy movement also attracts Wiccans who feel that many in the Pagan scene have a watered-down understanding of what "Wicca" is (as distinct from the broader categories "Wiccanesque Paganism" and "Pagan witchcraft").

And it also attracts some Pagans who are dissatisfied with the Pagan scene for various other reasons, such as disgreement with one or more of the political views espoused by many leading Pagans (liberal, left-wing, feminist, environmentalist), or a dislike of the anti-Christian attitudes of some Pagans, or a discomfort with the gothy or otherwise offbeat clothing worn by some Pagan spokespeople.

Some -- though not all -- people in the anti-fluffy movement have a very friendly attitude toward Satanists, and are critical of the tendency of many "fluff-bunnies" (and others in the Pagan scene) to scapegoat Satanists. Some anti-fluffies have echoed my own critique of common "We're not Satanists!" disclaimers.

Others are not so friendly. Some Pagan Reconstructionists, for example, are even more hostile toward Satanists than many Wiccans and Wiccanesque Pagans are.

Below are some anti-fluffy websites:

Later, I'll post here some additional thoughts about the anti-fluffy movement. For now, I'll just say:  Thanks very much to those of you who have objected to the scapegoating of Satanists within the Pagan community.

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