It occurs to me that some of my readers might be thrown for a loop, or left in the dark, when I talk about being a pagan. Paganism is a very broad term whose meaning has changed over time. Since I live now, I’m really talking about contemporary paganism, or neopaganism. This is still an umbrella term which can be hard to define. John Beckett of the blog “Under the Ancient Oaks” has a great post that gives a high level view of contemporary paganism, highlighting John Halstead’s Four Centers of Paganism: Nature, Community, Deities, and the Self. Go give it a read, or at least a scan, then come back. Don’t worry, I’ll wait…
Done? Good! If I had to plot myself somewhere on his Venn diagram, I’d peg myself right about here:
My pagan path is mostly focused on revering nature and self development. While community has grown to be an important part of my spiritual path, the communities that fit me best are actually interfaith, or interspiritual – broader than just pagans, but still accepting of them. So I just kiss that circle. And I tend to feel that all spirits and energy are part and parcel of the same Spirit and Energy, we just each relate to those Big Concepts using the frameworks that fit us best. For me, it comes in many forms, some of them have been called deities, but not all. That puts me a bit out of bounds from the true polytheists.
So there you have it. Paganism, and my own flavor of paganism, in a nut shell. Or maybe an acorn!