The nature of the monotheistic religions is to encode us with the idea that individualism is of utmost importance. Think of the Christian religion, and its focus on individual salvation. Meanwhile, these religions categorically condemn and dismiss any form of “paganism” – ideologies that integrally relate us to the earth.
“Paganism” is yet another term that religion demonizes and scares people away from. You might be surprised to find that some of the central values of paganism include:
1. Love for and Kinship with Nature. Reverence for the life force and its ever-renewing cycles of life and death.
2. A positive morality, in which the individual is responsible for the discovery and development of their true nature in harmony with the outer world and community. This is often expressed as ‘Do what you will, as long as it harms none’.
3. Recognition of the Divine, which transcends gender, acknowledging both the female and male aspect of Deity.
If you do some more digging around you will also find that paganism teaches:
1. Responsibility of Beliefs
The most basic tenant of paganism is that it is your own responsibility, not the responsibility of any government, institution, church or other people, to choose what you believe in regards to spirituality, values, ethics, the nature of Divinity, etc.
2. Personal Responsibility for Your Actions and Personal Development
The development of your personal beliefs, morals and ethics is your own responsibility. The belief that we are products of our own environment does not stand within the pagan structure, as paganism teaches that it is the responsibility of each individual to learn to recognize what is right from wrong, regardless of our early environment.
3. Everything is Sacred
Most pagan religions believe that everything in the universe is sacred, but the definition and level of sacredness applied to an object will generally vary from one pagan to another. For some pagans, all parts of our universe are considered divine and as such, sacred and worthy of our deepest respect.
There is nothing in the above values and principles of paganism that are inconsistent with the message and teachings of Jesus.
So, do you see what I mean? Many people learned through religious indoctrination that “paganism” is the equivalent of satanism. That’s what happens when we don’t question what we’ve been told, think for ourselves, or take responsibility to educate ourselves.