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Telling People


Guest ~Rachel~
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I didnt tell my parents, they already knew.

Whilst holding a conversation with a local handyman who was at my parents one day. he is openly pagan from the way he looks to the staff he carries. i asked if there was any decent bits of wood in his shed to make an altar from when my dad just said " why do you need an altar when your bookshelf has sufficed for the last 40 years"

 

I was rather shocked but at the same time i know he understood.

 

 

:rolleyes: Your dad is a legend!!!

266665[/snapback]

 

 

You can say that again, hes wonderful

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From what I remember, my mum confiscated the copy of "Wicca" by Vivienne Crowley which I had hidden beneath my wardrobe, with my pornography (putting the magazines back though), when I was 16, and went on a lengthy campaign of shock, convinced that I was engaged in some evil occult activities which probably involved smoking cannabis as well, and therefore I needed saving.

 

My dad didn't particularly care because he trusts me to be reasonably sensible.

 

These days, I wear a small pentagram about my neck at all times, and usually describe myself as either "militant atheist/pantheist" or "pagan" depending on who asks, and state something vague about the Forces of Nature.

 

 

Most of my closest friends believe something very similar or a variation thereof, besides the practicing muslim, the one or two "nominal" christians (the sort who put "CoE" on forms but haven't set foot in a church since they were infants) and one of my friends who I am very close to, despite the fact that he formally believes my path is "evil" and that god told him not to read one of the books I lent him. Still not too sure how I feel about that, since he's got "worse" over time.

Edited by Metacognition
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Most of my family are RC, although rarely attend church. I was baptised RC and went to church school but from the age of 11 I only attended church for weddings and funerals! I knew it wasn't for me.

 

My dd went up to my mum one day not long after i had discovered my path and said 'Nanny, mummy is a pagan' My mum just looked at me and turned to my daughter and told her not to be silly. I decided after that comment not to bother trying to explain. My dad has never been interested in religion so it never came up in conversation and now we don't talk.

 

When i told my closest friends they replied 'About time, we wondered when you would realise'

 

My daughter attends a church school.. Purely because it was decent and small, the downside is that she has to attend church once a week. I normally drop her at the door and go but last week i had stayed behind to see the start of the service because she was 'serving' and was chatting to one of the parents about church and god while we waited for the service to start.

She was ranting on about the church and how wonderful it was, so when i pipped up i wasn't a Christian anymore and didn't believe in one almighty god, you needed a shovel to scrap her jaw up off the floor! :lol: I didn't even get the chance to say the P word, I saw my dd's procession and headed for the exit prety quick :o_beer:

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I've never really hidden what I believe or who I am. If someone asks me, I'll explain my beliefs or at least, how I see the world.

Saying that, I've never sat anyone down and said ' right, I've got something to tell you...'. I don't think of my beliefs as anything out of the ordinary that need explaining or 'outing'. Paganism best suits who i am and what I do but it's not something I consciously set out to follow, I didn't convert or owt and I'm still who I always was. Discovering my beliefs had a term of description was only a revelation to myself and not something I felt I had to justify to anybody <_<

 

Barnx

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I never actually had to tell my family really, My parents kind of knew before I did <_< I remember my dad was the one whosaid to me I was pagan, and a few weeks later told me about New Aeon books which was in the Corn Exchange in Manchester at the time, he said I should go check it out :D To be frank (no not Spencer :D) they have never been bothered by it. Well I say never, Mum did get a little concerned when I was reading into Satanism, but that phase from me didn't last long at all. I think most of my extended family know as well, I've never hidden it from anyone and remember giving one of my youngest cousins advice when she got interested (think it was a teen phase brought on by 'The Craft' as I don't think she believes anything now). I actually cringe at the advice I gave her back then as I was in the fluffy stages myself before my path really began to take shape for me.

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I've never hidden it from anyone and remember giving one of my youngest cousins advice when she got interested (think it was a teen phase brought on by 'The Craft' as I don't think she believes anything now). I actually cringe at the advice I gave her back then as I was in the fluffy stages myself before my path really began to take shape for me.

266853[/snapback]

 

<_< Before 'The Craft' came out, I was generally considered 'that weirdo that hangs around in the library and hunts ghosts at the weekend'. After that film came out, several people came to me asking how they could get the power of 'manole' or whatever it was (I always think it sounds like 'manhole' :lol:). I didn't understand it because I hadn't seen the film at that point but I didn't like the idea of them lot with any power and so I just gave them all copies of the charge of the goddess and told them to memorise it and then go somewhere outside at night, alone and naked and say it three times without mistakes.

 

They soon gave up!

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As I've said on the board before I belive in being totally open about my Practices. My family and freinds all know and find it either interesting or a bit strange-Then again they have allways found me to be intersting and a bit strange. I drop things in passing to my Mother, comments like "I was reading someones Tarot cards the other day. Or. We are off to a Moot this weekend." She seems pretty ambivalent in a "Well whatever makes you happy" kind of way.

 

I do get a little tired of the You sacrifice babies/worship the devil/dance around in the nip (not with my body I don't) attitude I get off the stepford. I look at in now as a life lesson on how people just dont wan't to listen.

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Most of the people who don't understand a spiritual mentality just thing I'm a big hippy and that suits me fine :coz_ton:

 

There's so many things I do and am that aren't considered "normal", when I meet new people who aren't of a similar mindset to met I feel like I have waves of "coming out" I end up doing. Coming out as vegan is usually first (twhich often results in people going on the defensive as if simply by being vegan you are insulting them for eating meat <_< ). Coming out as a big hippy may come after that, which I think most people see as harmless new age fluf (I guess because I don't tell them about the bits that they may find distasteful!). There's also coming out as qeer, trans, feminist, lefty anarchist type... it's all rolled into one for me really, so it's alot easier to just be myself! Then you get to hang out with other people who think like you as well and have lots of exciting conversations about the things you're both interested in, instead of hanging out with "normal" people and constantly worrying about them finding stuff out

Edited by Kristofski
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  • 2 weeks later...

Years ago I was very open, almost feeling a need to share my interest/enthusiasm with anyone who was even remotely interested. This seemed like the best approach at the time. However, a decade later and I think I was a little naive; friends may have overlooked the weirdness but I'm certain my beliefs had a part to play in (lack of) promotion and eventual redundancy in work. I believe you don't have to give people much ammunition for such things - even if it's just in their subconscious as "something weird about this person - can't trust them". You have to make someone redundant; do you keep the vanilla person who seems 'normal' or the slightly loony one who's into (what is probably perceived as) loony childish teenager stuff. If the skillset is the same it comes down to that - who do I have most in common with? Doesn't help when your team manager is a Christian either. We had some excellent debates but ultimately I feel it played a part in my downfall.

 

Nowadays if religion crops up in conversation (work or social) I tend to use expressions like "open minded", "free thinker" and "the closest label I could use would be pagan". If people are immediately dismissive of religion I question their reasons; typically it's the assumption that religion = Christianity (or Western beliefs in general). When I mention Buddhism, Taoism etc most admit they know very little about them, but that on reflection some religions may not be that bad after all.

 

I may also mention that Paganism is the true original (group of) faith(s) of this country - preceding Christianity. This normally wins some points as it suddenly makes me some form of a traditionalist. If having to counter anything to do with 'Gods' I simply explain my view that everything is symbolic; simply a way of putting parts of life/nature into an easily expressible form. People are quick enough to identify with (for example) the Apple logo as this has associations of being arty, quirky, intelligent and individual. It's not too far then to see why someone might attribute similar values to a god, symbol, statue etc.

 

I never mention Wicca/Witch as for most people this has associations with halloween, irrational beliefs and loony folk. I also don't really associate with the words much myself now - 'Wicca' seems horribly Americanised and Witch just reminds me of goths trying to out-freak the normals. I'm aware of how I view these words so I'm very conscious how 'outsiders' would view them too. If they ask "paganism - is that witches and stuff?" I'll briefly outline the origin of the words pagan and witch, this I feel a) explains things well and B) rapidly kills off the spooky halloween associations.

 

So in summary, when it does crop up, I try the give the impression my beliefs are based on research and personal development, rather than something I've picked off the bookshelf at Waterstones. This at least gives the mistaken impression I'm sane, gives very little space for comical retorts whilst also opening up the possibility of further discussion; better to come across as an educated free thinker rather than a loony blind-follower of <insert any belief system here>.

 

I use the same approach with everyone now, including family. I won't jump on the chance for debate (generally avoid it) but if I think people are making judgments based on (IMO incorrect) preconceptions I'll try to throw them a few curve-balls.

 

Steve

Edited by coherer
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I should just add - no offence intended to those who use the words Wicca or Witch. I just meant I have some negative associations around these words and hence I'm very aware that the majority of the public do too. I try to phrase things without using words I know will immediately make outsiders view me as a loon. Not sure it always works but ... *shrug*

 

Steve

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When I first "came out" my Nan waffled on about Jehovah and all sorts of stuff that she had NEVER uttered before that day and even went so far as to flick holy water at me (she had gone to church special and everything!!!)... not against me, but more against the "evil" she thought had over taken me!!! :) ;)

 

However, 10+ years on - she has almost converted herself!! All very interested and I am her first port of call for something of a "spiritual" nature. My Dad was not much fussed at all - not believeing in "God" so much and he is just happy i am on a path that is right for me and is pleased that i obtain that happiness from nature and the like. My mum still questions alot of what i believe, but as I have never been a skyclad spellcaster, it has never really been something to raise eyebrows. As for work - some people I have told, some people i have not. Has always depended on whether or not I have been happy with a company. Most people have taken it in their stride, and I have found, for example, where I am working now, most folk are into something "alternative".

 

However, my OH works in an incredibly small office with a Jehovah Witness. She is a lovely girl.. but can go on a bit, and I have sneeking suspicion she could quote the Bible Dot Cotton-style. She knows what I believe and according to OH has never said anything to him about it. However, i feel it could be one of those conversations that are hurtling my way...:o_motz:

(*rubs hands in glee and, for dramatic effect, goes to hunt out black lipstick and biggest pentagram she can find**)

Edited by HedgeWitchery
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  • 1 month later...

OH saw me reading Viviene Crowley and asked " are you going to be a witch then?" "Looks like it" was my reply. Never bothered him in the least. Let my Big Sis see my new collection of books and she asked if she could borrow one. Wee Bro just said about time too! So, no problem for me. I don't shout it from the rooftops, don't bring the subject up in conversation, my workmates may already have guessed, but no-one gives a sh*t. Why should they?

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First person I told was my ex, who being a complete bastard anyway, just laughed and said, "Aye, whatever"! So, on meeting my new guy, I mentioned quite early on, and he thought it was great. Took a real interest and still is.

 

Haven't told my parents but think they probably know I"m a bit "different".

 

Dont think its something you really have to go about shouting as those of other faiths dont usually either, unless they have to wear specific clothes etc.

 

tree

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I have a sneaking suspicion my Dad has guessed something, but he hasn't said anything, and won't unless I bring it up first. He's reletively pragmatic for a (retired) Baptist pastor, and understands the need for some form of spirituality. My mother on the other hand is reputed to be a descendent of Oliver Cromwell although I think myself it was more likely to be Matthew Hopkins...

BM

xx

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  • 2 weeks later...

I never had to tell my parents, they had to tell me!! I was told that we were superstitious, they told me when I was in my late teens that they meant Pagan. We never mentioned it as being a religious lifestyle, it was just the way we were. I mentioned in another thread, that I was raised to perform basic rituals from when I was a small child, but I was also taught to cook and clean and run a household, too. So it wasn't until much later in my life that I began to realise the significance of the dip in the garden where we always had our fire, where the ladies used to sit and talk and put the world to rights, I began to realise why I was told repeatedly what that plant was called and what it could be used for, why we always used honey and crushed garlic for cuts and burns, etc., etc. When I asked my parents why they never used the term Pagan, they told me it was because a lot of people didn't understand our lifestyle, didn't understand that we were trying to make the best of our lives and what we have, they didn't understand that we were trying to help other people without harming anyone or anything. Don't get me wrong, my parents and grandparents weren't 'hippy' types, they had jobs, they had bills to pay, just like everyone else. But they had been taught to be cautious, you don't mention the 'P' word or the 'W' word, witchcraft was still a crime when my grandmother was being taught by her mother and grandmother and that is why my parents had to tell me, that I was raised Pagan and not superstitious, as I'd been led to believe! When I come to think of it, I've never had to tell anyone, really, only Himself, but that's because sometimes he can be as thick as two short planks, bless him!!

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Hi, i agree with most on this topic as in why tell anybody? to me being pagan is very personal and is my way of life not a label. i told my family last year as me and my partner are planning on getting handfasted and i really want them to be a part of it. Well my mum thinks its 'cool' and has now covered herself in gold pentagrams and spent a fortune on materialistic 'things' and now calls herself a pagan,(which infuriates me, i have to admit) and my grandma thinks i worship the devil! This is fine and doesnt bother me at all as it doesnt matter what others think but to what i know and believe.

 

What i have found the hardest is all the narrow minded people and all the steriotypes around religion and faith. People often ask me what i believe in yet they dont really want to know, and alot gets left unsaid as i dont believe in preaching.

 

Im terrible at trying to put things into words so hope this makes sense, if not just disrigard this post, lol.

 

Brightest Blessings

 

xx

:o_fairy: :( :P :blink: ;)

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What i have found the hardest is all the narrow minded people and all the steriotypes around religion and faith

 

Hi, i agree with most on this topic as in why tell anybody?

 

Because not telling people just reinforces the "DevilWorsipping" steriotype thats why.

Being a Pagan is nothing to be ashamed of.

The more Pagans/Macicians/Wiccans that are "out and proud" the more serioulsy we are taken by our familys by the public by the media.

Being a Pagan in a predominatly Christian county is a challenge, But itsn't our task to challange peoples perceptions? To educate people tha we are not all evil or even Evul?

Dont we worship "Strong Gods." Stong Gods demand Strong Followers. Look at Odin, Thor, Hermes, Mars, The Morrigan, Neptune, Thoth, ect. Would you want to stand in front of one of those and give a accounting of yourself that "My folks didnt approve."

 

 

 

OK ranty mode over.

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I like the way you put that! I must admit, sometimes I stand in front of my shrine to talk to Isis and I cringe when I have to admit to any 'failings' that I have had! I know Isis is strong, but compassionate, and will forgive the occasional slip-up, but sometimes I feel like I used to when I had to stand in front of my parents and admit I'd done something wrong!! I understand that Isis will forgive me, all Mothers do, and I always make it up to Her in some way! :)

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What i have found the hardest is all the narrow minded people and all the steriotypes around religion and faith

 

Hi, i agree with most on this topic as in why tell anybody?

 

Because not telling people just reinforces the "DevilWorsipping" steriotype thats why.

Being a Pagan is nothing to be ashamed of.

The more Pagans/Macicians/Wiccans that are "out and proud" the more serioulsy we are taken by our familys by the public by the media.

Being a Pagan in a predominatly Christian county is a challenge, But itsn't our task to challange peoples perceptions? To educate people tha we are not all evil or even Evul?

Dont we worship "Strong Gods." Stong Gods demand Strong Followers. Look at Odin, Thor, Hermes, Mars, The Morrigan, Neptune, Thoth, ect. Would you want to stand in front of one of those and give a accounting of yourself that "My folks didnt approve."

 

 

 

OK ranty mode over.

276298[/snapback]

 

 

Isn't strange how different experiences can be? I've never felt the slightest need to defend my beliefs from anyone's misconceptions and I've never had anyone accuse me of being evil when they found out about them. I really don't see my lifestyle as something I have to either hide or 'promote' - it's just something I live. I'm not in a closet and I'm not a campaigner for pagan rights, I'm just a pagan. I've met a few people over the years who are terribly keen to announce to all and sundry that they're pagan and the main impression they've given to the public is that they're barking - swapping the misconception of evilness to one of poor mental heath isn't much of a improvement really! :rolleyes: Much better to simply be and when folks work out what you are, they'll get a good impression of what it means too! At least I think so.

 

As far as telling people goes... I don't tell but I don't deny either. If someone asks I answer honestly but I can count on one hand the amount of times I've been asked what my spiritual beliefs are. I would find it very odd to meet someone who divulved their religion along with their name and as such I don't do it to others. My parents know and are rather bemused by it as they're both from a long line of secular people and see any sort of belief in deity as fanciful and strange. They're nice people though, and don't really care so long as I'm happy which is how they feel about most things I do! I assume the rest of the family know too but apart from a christmas card from my sister this year where she'd crossed out the printed mention of christmas and written in 'pagan celeb of your choice' and once when her husband asked me where he could learn about reiki and buddhism, it's never really been mentioned.

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What i have found the hardest is all the narrow minded people and all the steriotypes around religion and faith

 

Hi, i agree with most on this topic as in why tell anybody?

 

Because not telling people just reinforces the "DevilWorsipping" steriotype thats why.

Being a Pagan is nothing to be ashamed of.

The more Pagans/Macicians/Wiccans that are "out and proud" the more serioulsy we are taken by our familys by the public by the media.

Being a Pagan in a predominatly Christian county is a challenge, But itsn't our task to challange peoples perceptions? To educate people tha we are not all evil or even Evul?

Dont we worship "Strong Gods." Stong Gods demand Strong Followers. Look at Odin, Thor, Hermes, Mars, The Morrigan, Neptune, Thoth, ect. Would you want to stand in front of one of those and give a accounting of yourself that "My folks didnt approve."

 

 

 

OK ranty mode over.

276298[/snapback]

 

ok, firstly i am not ashamed of being pagan in any way, shape or form, paganism is not just my religion and faith but my life.

 

I dont feel i explained myself well enough in my last post (im still a newbie here!) ;)

 

I am proud to be pagan, but i dont feel the need to tell everyone i meet. i can understand that if their was more understanding about Paganism in society then it would be more accepted, which is the way it should be,

 

maybe i have just had alot of negative responses from people i have told, and i often feel the 'why should i have to explain myself to you' when i know they are not listening or interested in what i am saying to them and look at me as if i am preaching to them.

 

I find it really hard to put my feelings into written words, does anybody understand where i am coming from? The last thing i want to do is offend anyone on.

 

Brightest Blessings

 

xxx

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What i have found the hardest is all the narrow minded people and all the steriotypes around religion and faith

 

Hi, i agree with most on this topic as in why tell anybody?

 

Because not telling people just reinforces the "DevilWorsipping" steriotype thats why.

Being a Pagan is nothing to be ashamed of.

The more Pagans/Macicians/Wiccans that are "out and proud" the more serioulsy we are taken by our familys by the public by the media.

Being a Pagan in a predominatly Christian county is a challenge, But itsn't our task to challange peoples perceptions? To educate people tha we are not all evil or even Evul?

Dont we worship "Strong Gods." Stong Gods demand Strong Followers. Look at Odin, Thor, Hermes, Mars, The Morrigan, Neptune, Thoth, ect. Would you want to stand in front of one of those and give a accounting of yourself that "My folks didnt approve."

 

 

 

OK ranty mode over.

276298[/snapback]

 

I haven't really 'told' anyone, but those that need to know these things do, including the JW in-laws, and the training to be a lay reader mother. No issues, and no devil worshipping stereotypes.

In fact, my mothers beliefs and mine overlap on a high number of points, despite her Christianity and my paganism. The in-laws think I'm going to hell, ;) (but not as much as OH is 'cos he should 'know better' :D ) and the religion thing has caused some issues, but more to do with the fact we don't agree with them than they disagree with us.

 

To me faith should be a personal issue, I don't care who or what you believe in as long as you try to be a decent human being, and I expect the same courtesy. ( My SiL has finally figured this out!) I don't like being preached to and personally find evangelistic denominations of any faith repugnant.

For this reason I am very reluctant to discuss my personal faith with others unless the conversation comes up naturally and they are particularly interested in hearing how I view my spirituality. :) And not all of us worship deity, so why should I have to worry about standing in front of one to explain my actions? :)

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Isn't strange how different experiences can be? I've never felt the slightest need to defend my beliefs from anyone's misconceptions and I've never had anyone accuse me of being evil when they found out about them. I really don't see my lifestyle as something I have to either hide or 'promote' - it's just something I live. I'm not in a closet and I'm not a campaigner for pagan rights, I'm just a pagan. I've met a few people over the years who are terribly keen to announce to all and sundry that they're pagan and the main impression they've given to the public is that they're barking - swapping the misconception of evilness to one of poor mental heath isn't much of a improvement really!  :) Much better to simply be and when folks work out what you are, they'll get a good impression of what it means too! At least I think so.

 

As far as telling people goes... I don't tell but I don't deny either. If someone asks I answer honestly but I can count on one hand the amount of times I've been asked what my spiritual beliefs are. I would find it very odd to meet someone who divulved their religion along with their name and as such I don't do it to others. My parents know and are rather bemused by it as they're both from a long line of secular people and see any sort of belief in deity as fanciful and strange. They're nice people though, and don't really care so long as I'm happy which is how they feel about most things I do! I assume the rest of the family know too but apart from a christmas card from my sister this year where she'd crossed out the printed mention of christmas and written in 'pagan celeb of your choice' and once when her husband asked me where he could learn about reiki and buddhism, it's never really been mentioned.

276486[/snapback]

 

Exactly how i feel about it.

I have met thousands of people over the years and can probably count the number of spontaneous convesations about their beliefs on maybe one hand. People just aren't interested. I haven't a clue how many of my friends and relations are believers or not and if any of them are i certainly don't know in what. What has anyone's beliefs got to do with anything? Sure right at the beginning, when it was different and a bit osé to be a pagan i may have showed off a bit but that was 35 yesrs ago and anyway passes as soon as you realise that people don't give a shit and you certainly aren't going to get laid because of it. I've certainly never met anyone confusing me with a devil worhipper.

I think beliefs are a bit like your sex life. You can discuss it with some people and with some you can't but you certainly don't go round broadcasting at everyone you meet unless you wish to offend or provoke and show off. This is why i am against pagan federations or organisations and moots trying to unify us and fight for our rights :D . Just be IMO or we risk becoming exactly like every other faith in the world.

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..... and the religion thing has caused some issues, but more to do with the fact we don't agree with them than they disagree with us.

276539[/snapback]

 

sorry, me again.

The more i think about this the more it rings true.

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  • 7 months later...

My Mum already knows, she is fairly interested in pagan beliefs as well and so we often talk about things, share magazines and occasionally do card readings together. My Dad always used to be a bit sceptical but has more recently become a bit more understanding about it....I never told him though I think Mum must have had words with him about things!!

 

As for friends/work people I tend not to mention it until I really trust the person! Some people guess anyway and people I have told have normally come out with the whole "we thought you were a bit weird" things as well! My bf is fantastic about it, coming from what to me seems like a firm CoE family (he was sent to Sunday school as a child and I think still believes most of it) I am always surprised when he asks me questions about trees, or faeries, or spirits and thigns like that and sometimes I don't think he takes me seriously, but I do try!! He's very much of the opinion that he'd hate it if I tried to "force" my beliefs on him though, which I respect and of course would never do!

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    • Nettle
      I have only ever been a Christian on paper lol. When visiting hospitals I would give the CofE answer when asked about my beliefs. I didn‚Äôt really even know what it meant. As a child I often prayed to God. But could probably count on two hands the amount of times I have attended church. Obviously at school I sang hymns¬†and recited the Lord‚Äôs Prayer. But I never went deep into it. My family is not religious. I have never been deeply influenced by Christianity. I have always been spiritual though. The weirdest thing is when I started on this journey it actually allowed me to gain deeper understanding of the Christ spirit. For many years I sought a shamanic technique¬†called the ‚Äúfierce eye‚Ä̬†technique. This technique as I believed at the time would allow me to command any spirit. I could banish them or destroy them at a glance. My long search for this technique allowed me to find and connect with many interesting things but never allowed me to unravel¬†the mysteries of the fierce eye technique. One day I had vision. In the vision - between the two doors - I saw a man standing at the corner of a street near to where I live. It was daytime but there was nothing else around. Nothing moved. It was as if every living thing was¬†asleep. I approached the man who as I was drawing closer turned to regard my approach. What I saw blew my mind away. The love I felt emanating from this strangers eyes was so powerful, so all consuming, utterly accepting¬†that I fell to my knees and started weeping with happiness. The love was so unconditional, so total and all encompassing. It took my breath away. I eventually awakened from this vision thinking what the hell was that all about? I did not realise until later that I had been shown the ‚Äúfierce eye‚ÄĚ technique. I had been mistaken in my assumptions as to what the ‚Äúfierce eye‚Ä̬†technique was all about. It was not about destroying something,¬†Commanding something¬†or even banishing something. It‚Äôs power lies in acceptance. I later realised that the being I had seen in my vision was the Christ spirit. The Christ spirit is also a Great Fool.¬† Who would have believed it,¬†that I would find¬†Christ following a pagan path lol. The irony was fitting. And made me realise just how limited I had allowed myself to be. The few times I have gone to church recently since this experience¬†(my son used to attend a CofE school) I feel very happy. Overjoyed even. A little mischievous.¬†I know I am welcome there even though I do not take up the mantle of Christian. I feel at home, accepted, even though I am a pagan. I feel very¬†welcome within the church.
    • Nettle
      I have several. Stone rabbit is one of my guides. He is a stone around the size of a medium sized hand, that is in the shape of a rabbits head (in profile) that I found many years ago and kept. On one side he has a mark that looks like an open eye, on the other side it looks as if he has lost that eye. Stone rabbit is master at navigating mazes/webways. When I want him to see something within the mundane I turn his head so his eye can observe. If I am going on a journey I have his lost eye side observing. He comes on my walks with me and I carry him in a bag around my neck.
    • Roundtuit
      Thank you.  Yes, I'm starting to think it's the journey that matters.   What a gorgeous image!  I'd love to get back to the fells, there's something new around very corner there.    
    • Stonehugger
      I've had varying degrees and natures of commitment to Christianity since I was at school but I've also always had pagan leanings and for quite a long time now my path has been entirely pagan. It's unproblematic in that my family and friends think it's harmless eccentricity, but I imagine it would be different if I took a strongly pagan stance on something. For me personally it's important to listen to what's going on around me and work out my path accordingly, so I celebrate the presence of many paths up the same mountain and have no concerns about reaching the top. I imagine that, like almost any walk in the fells, what currently looks like the top is just another place to see the next top from. Definitely!! ūüėĀ
    • Ellinas
      Well, I've been called many things in my time... I'm also a former Christian, with a chequered history (Anglican, in the guise of the Church in Wales, then Plymouth Brethren with the odd foray into the Baptists along the way).  I fell out with Christianity in the early 2000's, when I was late 30's, early 40's. Since then, the general nature of my meanderings has remained fairly constant, but the details and contents have changed over time.  That's fine.  The journey is the issue, not the destination.  Ithaca calls, but Phoenician markets and Egyptian cities have the greater import (poetic reference - just means follow your path and hope to arrive late, if at all).  What I believe tomorrow may be very different to what I believe today.  What I believed yesterday is just a stepping stone. In short, don't worry about what you have been, as it is merely the pathway that got you to what you are, and don't worry about where you are going, there are any number of bye-ways for you to explore. As to others - I have struggled with family pressures and the tyranny of monotheistic faith.  I understand your position and have no issue with a softly-softly approach such as you describe.  In fact, it is the best way unless you are prepared to create and weather a family rift. Dangerous statement.  Talk about tempting fate...!
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