Pagan response to JCI religious war
"Pagan" people view Mother Earth and all her life as sacred. The current war perpetuated by the three Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam) is damaging life on Earth. We call for all people to return to an Earth-centered spirituality that honors and respects life instead of the three (JCI) religions that destroy the planet in their "hOILy war"
following from POST-APOCALYPTIC PAGANISM
by Dale R. Gowin
"Paganism" is a term that is used in widely disparate senses. Generally, it refers tothe traditional religious beliefs of indigenous peoples. Here, we will use the term to describe an approach to spirituality that is based on reality — on Nature and Life rather than on abstract concepts of Deity.
The word "pagan" is etymologically related to the Latin words pagus, the countryside or rural areas, and paganus, a peasant. The term came into use during the European "dark ages" as a pejorative reference to the rural population that maintained allegiance to the "old religion".
The word was used by Roman Christians who had established their new religion by force, and whose center of strength was in the cities. Christianity was the mandatory religion of the urban population and the ruling classes, and Paganism was the traditional religion of the rural peasants who rebelliously adhered to their traditional ways.
The ancient Pagan religions included a wide variety of beliefs and practices in the different lands and cultures of the world, but certain common themes united them and serve to distinguish them from the imperialist, patriarchal religions of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic tradition. These common elements — deification of Nature and the feminine, and an animistic and pantheistic respect for Earth and all living things — have been identified with by numerous modem groups that have chosen the terms "pagan" or "neo-pagan" to describe their religious beliefs.
Instead of basing their spirituality on an abstract deity defined as separate from nature (a "creator" distinct from the "creation"), Pagans relate to the presence of life in all of its varied manifestations as an actual, perceptible presence of Deity. In the words of William Blake, "all that lives is holy."
Pagan spirituality differs from that of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic (JCI) tradition, firstly, in the idea of gender. The JCI deity is conceived of as male, and the culture that has developed from this ruling archetype relegates women to a social status of subjugation to males.
In contrast, Pagan ideas of deity are focused on the idea of the female as mother, the source and nurturer of the universe. Ancient Pagan cultures honored women and tended to be matrilineal (i.e. family descent was traced from mother to daughter) and matriarchal (i.e. collective decisions were facilitated primarily by women).
JCI-dominated cultures are largely hierarchical, authoritarian, and competitive. They are characterized by distinct class divisions — a small ruling class that enjoys wealth, power and privilege and a much larger disenfranchised class that lives in poverty, toil and drudgery. These conditions exist in all of the modem industrialized nations, "capitalist" and "socialist" alike. In contrast, Pagan cultures were characterized by common tillage of lands, community sharing of resources and labor, and a generally egalitarian and humane social attitude.
A similar distinction can be seen in attitudes toward sexuality. JCI-based cultures repress sexuality and malign it as "sinful", while Pagan cultures tended to view sexual energy and activities as sacramental, as manifestations of the holy creative life force.
Attitudes toward nature show the same contrast. Urban-oriented JCI faiths teach that Man is Master, Conqueror and Owner of the Earth, of nature and other living beings, having the right to use, consume, and destroy them at will.
Pagans respected nature as the embodiment of the Goddess, the Great Mother, the womb from which we spring, source and substance of Life.
The JCI-based belief that nature is created for Man's use laid the groundwork for the Western scientific/technological view of nature as an inert, lifeless collection of "raw materials" and "resources" rather than a living Being of Whom we are an integral part. These attitudes have led to the arrogant and thoughtless destruction of the environment, a continuing pattern throughout the history of Western civilization that now threatens us with global catastrophe.
MOTHER EARTH AND FATHER SUN
The symbols that relate most universally to Pagan spirituality are Mother Earth and FatherSun. Through these twin archetypes we will examine the key ideas of Post-Apocalyptic Paganism and its relevance to the major struggles of our time.
The Pagan idea of Nature as Mother is rooted deeply in our language and culture. It has survived despite its suppression by the dominant JCI archetypes throughout the thousands of years of their reign.
article cont' on website below;
would like to add that African Earth-centered beliefs were almost destroyed by Islam and Christianity. Still today many Islamic governments in Africa do not recognize the rights of "pagan" Earth-centered or animist peoples (see Nuba in Sudan). They suffer at the hands of Islam like the indigenous of Americas suffer at the hands of Christians..
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