The terror attack on a mosque by some white supremacist numbskull sickens me to the core. These people were doing nothing wrong. All they were doing was worshipping their god in their way. Why commit this heinous act?
Much of the heathen community is concerned about the terrorists use of “Valhalla” as a means of stating his intended destination upon his death. I totally agree that his, and much of the white supremacist organizations out there, use of our sacred symbols is disgusting. Heathenry has no room for bigots and racists. However, my biggest concern is how callous the human race has become. This type of stuff should not be common place, but it’s becoming so at an alarming rate. Why? What has made humanity so callous and so narcissistic? Because let’s face the facts about this terrorist, he did this while live streaming via a GoPro and that my dear readers is a sign of narcissism. With the increase of social media and streaming technology, this has become possible to live stream such wanton disregard for human life. Should we ban such technology? No, of course not, but everyone should be asking this most important question: why have we human beings become so callous? This is indeed an uncomfortable question to ask, but it needs to be asked and answered. If we are expected to have a conversation on race, a conversation on guns and so forth, why are we not having a conversation for the root of everything that ails our modern society: human callousness?
I hope to the gods that the victims of this horrible act are comforted and are given justice. I hope that New Zealand is merciless in their doling out of the law against this terrorist. And I hope, from all this tragedy, we human beings can become less callous and start loving each other regardless of our so-called differences. We are 7 billion people living on Mother Gaia, none of us are going anywhere. Therefore, we need to learn how to cooperate and get along with each other or we are doomed as a species.
It’s always funny to see Christians talk about persecution especially when they were last persecuted around 300 CE. Afterwards, they were the ones rampaging and persecuting against pagans for centuries. Now, they’re pulling the victim card while stating that “we need to get back to our Christian roots with Christian public school education.” Sorry to say, but theocracies don’t work out as they plan. Instead of providing Heaven on Earth, it becomes Hell on Earth when people believe they are doing “Gods” work. YOu can’t state you are for liberty and freedom while calling for the 10 Commandments to be the rule of the land. Commandment #1 especially puts a halt on that whole idea of freedom and liberty. If people aren’t given the right to believe in one God, many Gods or no Gods, then you don’t have freedom, you have tyranny.
Wild Bill for America is the prime example of one of those supposedly freedom loving Americans who deep down want a theocracy even though he denies such. When you vociferously call for Christian “education” in public schools and want the 10 Commandments to be the law of the land, I believe that’s proof enough of wanting a Christian theocracy in charge of our country.
With the ascendancy of the Trump Presidency, we ought to be vigilant about what takes place in the United States. How far will Trump pander to the evangelicals who helped him into power? If he wants to retain his position in American politics, it’s not inconceivable that Trump will do what it takes to keep his power. So, it’s up to us Americans to make sure that the swing to extremism doesn’t occur.
In this day and age of secularism and reason, a lot of us polytheists are stuck between a rock (monotheists) and a hard place (militant atheists). These two aspects of our society believe that our beliefs are silly and wrong, which is a statement of absolute truth according to their worldview. The problem with absolute truths is that they are always based on faith and not evidence. It’s faith to say that many Gods exist or only one God exists and it is also faith to state that no Gods exist because if the absence of evidence to prove either claim is considered faith then so should it be said of the atheist hypothesis of no Gods. Of course, atheists will argue that their hypothesis isn’t a hypothesis based on faith, but rather fact. In order to know the absolute truth of either God(s) existing or not would require a feat only a demigod is capable of: resurrection from death and thus far no one with these past few centuries can claim that mantle, so if no one among us, polytheists, monotheists and atheists, haven’t returned from the dead then none of us know the absolute truth of the existence or nature of the Gods and thus it’s based wholly on faith alone and nothing more. To say otherwise is intellectual dishonesty.
The militant atheists are no better than the militant monotheists who protest funerals of soldiers, who deny basic rights to the LGBT community and believe without any questioning that their beliefs are rooted in truth. When you put Richard Dawkins next to Pat Robertson, though their beliefs differ, their tactics do not differ in any way. They belittle the heretics and assume that the non-believers of their faith are nothing more than ignorant trolls that are better off hiding in caves. They question nothing of their own beliefs due to the fact that they believe they are right and rooted deeply into the truth of the matter.
I firmly question everything as someone that is a student in the sciences and sometimes I have my problems with my faith, but never can I become an atheist because nothing is certain. And never do I feel that because I’m a student of the sciences that means I should automatically become an atheist. That’s nothing more than a herd mentality that is also seen in many religious cults, believe this way and nothing else. I do, however, keep my religion separate from my scientific views. Since science can neither prove nor disprove the supernatural there’s no reason for my faith to be intertwined with my scientific views and vice versa. To anyone who would ever suggest that I should get out of the science field because of my faith I can only say, look inwards at the level ignorance you have shown and wonder, aloud, if maybe you need to step away from science and not tarnish it with your closed mind. Yes, no one should deny evolution, especially the teaching of, due to religious views, but one should not deny exploration of the world via science because someone believes differently than you. Isn’t this what Galileo and other early scientists faced when their facts conflicted with the monotheist world view? How dare you then do as the monotheists have done and become the ignorance you so rightly want to get rid of. Using ignorance to get rid of ignorance equates to nothing (1-1=0)
Brothers shall fight | and fell each other,
And sisters’ sons | shall kinship stain;
Hard is it on earth, | with mighty whoredom;
Axe-time, sword-time, | shields are sundered,
Wind-time, wolf-time, | ere the world falls;
Nor ever shall men | each other spare. – Voluspa 45
As I’ve stated many times on this blog, I’m on a quest to unite all religious faiths who stand for Liberty and Freedom in the United States of America and who believe fervently in American Exceptionalism. First, I have to attempt to establish communications and understanding between those of us who are Conservative/Libertarian Pagans and Conservative Christians. It makes sense considering Christianity is the majority faith in America and has much to do with the foundation of our country regardless of what many people tend to believe. However, I am not without my fears. My fear tends to be summed up by the above quote from our holy text the Voluspa. I think anyone of any faith can see the quote above happening today in our society.
Pagans practice a false religion
I tend to watch Wild Bill for Americas videos on YouTube and read conservative blogs like Ann Barnhardt and what I run into a lot of the times is the quote above. I understand that in their beliefs that there is only one God and that their Commandments set forth by their God is the rules they follow. That’s admirable considering our society has little to no values these days and that people with some sort of integrity and honor still exist today, but Christians do need to understand that people possess free will and will choose their beliefs accordingly. They don’t have to agree, they just have to afford the respect to those of us who aren’t Christians as they expect others to afford to them. I don’t agree with Christianity, but I respect the adherents and their beliefs. Even when I’m proselytized to by them I feel no offense and simply keep the respect for their beliefs in mind. There are non-Christians who tend to get offended by such things, but I keep in mind that if I feel offense to preaching than its a matter of weak faith as opposed to actually feeling offended.
You’re going to burn in Hell
Once again, this is something I’m not offended by not because I don’t believe in some place of eternal damnation (I’m sure there is, Hitler, Stalin and pol pot can’t share the same afterlife such as genuinely good people), but because I feel it is something expressed out of concern for the well-being of ones soul in the afterlife. But once again it’s up to Christians to understand that not everyone believes their is false or evil. Christians can repeatedly express their belief that our religion is false or contrived by the Devil, but it makes it no more true than stating that Jesus was actually the Devil incarnate to create a schism within the Jewish community. Paganism has been around much longer than any monotheistic religion and so to state that those who still practice paganism will go to Hell is ridiculous. However, I do respect the intention behind the sentiment, as long as it’s benevolent and not malevolent.
Worship the Creator, not the created
There’s a big difference between worshiping the created, which tends to be more of pantheism than polytheism, and worshipping the Creator, which most pagans do but just different Creators than Yahweh. There are areas that get fuzzy and seems as if we are worshipping the created, but it’s more of a respect for the spirits imbued within the created such as land wights or land spirits, but for the most part we worship the Creators of our world more so. We just tend to balance both worship of our Creators and respect for the created without forgetting either.
Now that we have cleared up a few things, understanding is the key to the gateway that leads to uniting all Americans against the tyranny currently ebbing it’s way into our society. My fear is that the lack of understanding between Judeo-Christians and pagans will keep the divide growing beyond an incomprehensible depth. We need to keep the spirit of our Nation, which is indicated in the full name of our country United States of America. We need to be united and strong against adversity and care for each other despite our differences in faith. If any Christian would like to counter my points, go for it! If it helps establish understanding between us all than I encourage it. I pray to the Gods for it, because our nation desperately needs to understand each other without being crass and uncivil. And if we disagree with each other than we need to disagree respectfully without resorting to name calling and childish ad hominems.
At times I become so apathetic towards politics that I simply slip away for months without ever looking at a news website, watching Glenn Beck or even writing in this blog, but recently my girlfriend and I plan on having a child and thus has become my duty to become vigilant when it comes to politics both here in the US and abroad. As our society becomes more globalization helped along by technology it’s prudent to stay on top of current events such as the Crisis in Iraq and Common Core because the long-term ramifications for our future child will be poignant.
So what exactly do I believe? It’s better to just list my beliefs:
I believe in gay marriage
How exactly do two people of the same gender marrying affect me? It seriously doesn’t much like Brittany Spears and other celebrities who abuse the institution of marriage for their own attention whoring.
I believe in the 2nd Amendment
The right for people to own guns should always be upheld because it ensures that the government will always be afraid of it’s citizens because they can and will always be armed to the teeth. That’s how it should be, the government fearing its citizens rather than citizens being fearful of their government.
I believe in religious rights
Christians today are taking a pounding by secularists maybe for good reason, but bashing an entire religion on the merits of a few really is silly. Plus, banning things like a cross erected 5 decades ago bought and paid for by ordinary citizens is even more silly. Leave it alone, it’s a memorial to the dead. Also, a Christian business should be given the right to put their business at risk by denying patronage to gay couples. In the end, they’ll revoke their own ban due to low amount of customers patronizing their business.
I believe Common Core is evil
Common Core reduces competition between good and bad schools by leveling the playing field. It also brings with it strange ways of doing math for example. The new way of math makes it harder for parents to their duty as parents and help their children scholastically. It makes schools more dependent on the Federal government as opposed to local communities and the people who fund those schools with their tax money. Taking examples from totalitarian and failing countries is not a good way to reform our education system.
I believe in Universal Healthcare
Obamacare is the biggest foul up ever to grace our country. I believe in Universal Healthcare, but I think it needs a more 21st Century revision in order to make it work effectively without putting peoples lives at risk. It needs to take the Hippocratic Oath to the fullest extent. It doesn’t need to be the rationed out healthcare that Conservatives are afraid of. With brilliant minds and innovation we Americans could make it work better than the European brand of Universal Healthcare.
I believe in School Choice
Every parent should be able to choose what type of school their child goes to whether it’s public or private or even home schooling and have it be affordable as well. The misplaced fear in George W. Bush voucher program was nothing more than Liberals wishing to subjugate parental choice. This to me is treasonous in that Liberals are forgoing a childs future for their own political gain.
I believe in being environmentally friendly
Lets face it, no one wants dirty air, polluted waters or to have the beautiful scenery that Nature bestows upon us to be blotted out by vast concrete and asphalt strip malls and parking lots. So, it is our duty as sentient beings to want to take care of the environment and make sure no more animals go extinct because of our existence.
I don’t believe Socialism/Communism is the answer
Now, I’m sure the naysayers will be quick to point out that my support of Universal Healthcare is hypocritical, however I don’t believe so. I can accept one component of an ideology without supporting the entire ideology itself. Communism/Socialism just simply does not work when applied to the real world. It lacks factoring in the fact that it’s usurping rights from people and human nature itself.
I believe Capitalism does need to be reformed for the 21st Century
The current form of capitalism is based off the Industrial Revolution, which has long since withered away to allow the Information/Digital Revolution to flourish, so it’s without any doubt that capitalism needs to be retrofitted for our 21st Century reality. Factories and other industries are slowly but surely giving way to automation and having capitalism still holding on the ancient remains of the Industrial Revolution does nothing to help people and in fact gives the Communists/Socialists credence in their ideology that capitalism is slowly dying.
I don’t believe in amnesty for illegals
As someone who is the son of a legal immigrant from Latin America, giving amnesty and all these amenities to illegal, law-breaking immigrants is a slap in the face to those who went through the process of citizenship the legal way. If these illegals want citizenship then they need to go about it the way everyone has.
I believe in a secured border
We need to secure our border and even put up an extensive wall along our border in order to secure our nation from illegal immigration and from intrusions from Mexican drug cartels and the Mexican military.
I believe political correctness is wrong
People need to really grow a thick skin and stop being offended by every little thing that comes out. What kind of life is it to find offense at everything around you? You don’t have the right to not be offended. Welcome to reality.
I believe in a non-racist, all inclusive nationalism
I think its important that all legal American citizens regardless of race, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, religion and political ideology to express pride in their country. Since pride in country tends to run contrary of the internationalist beliefs of most Left leaning ideologies the opposing idea is of course nationalism. Nationalism isn’t inherently racist in nature and especially with a diverse country such as America nationalism can not be racist.
I support the 10th Amendment
The idea of giving more power to the states and the people and restricting power given to the Federal government is just common sense. As we can clearly see the power lust that Federal government has is a clear and present danger to American citizens. We need to get back rights for the states to choose what is good for their state and not be bullied by the government to accept things the Federal government wants to impose like Common Core.
There’s more things I can bullet point that I support, but it tends to be a long list so this gives you an idea of why I believe in what I believe and why I have a problem simply sticking to any party line. I’m just some person stuck in the center of politics and find the Left-Right rift to be ridiculous.
Since first hearing about this Bill, I’ve teetering back and forth on whether or not I support such an idea. On the issue I have two hands on the issue that differ vastly. On the Left hand I am pro-gay marriage for the reason that I look beyond the whole sexual aspect that many on the Right focus too much on, but rather I see the emotional aspect of why gays should be allowed to marry. Why should two consenting adults who love each other be denied the right? However, on the Right hand, I am pro-religious liberties and believe that forcing a business that holds tautly to religious views to serve those they feel are sinful in nature isn’t freedom, but fascism. Does anyone really like to be forced to do something they are against? Would a Liberal serve an obvious neo-Nazi that walked into their store? I highly doubt it and I wouldn’t blame them at all. So, with that in mind why can’t those on the opposing side of this Bill see the moral dilemma inherent?
While I certainly understand the Left and its abhorrence of this Bill, I think if it were implemented we would have seen something unexpected. Aside from how capitalism works and that eventually this Bill would collapse on its own weight due to lack of customers going to these Right to Deny businesses I think something else would have occurred. It would have backlashed on Christians in general entirely. After having a conversation with a fellow pagan they inquired into whether this Bill would also allow pagan businesses to deny Christian customers. I felt that was an interesting question to think about. What if it was implemented? What if pagans who owned businesses decided to Deny Service to Christians? Would then the Christians see the problem with the Bill they supported? With the lack of business from people who feel Right of Denial isn’t what decent businesses coupled with businesses owned by pagans and other religious views denying service to Christians would the Bill collapse faster than expected? This is what made me end up supporting Bill, not because of any supposed opposition to gay marriage, but to witness the collapse of such a Bill and perhaps teach a lesson that only the Gods can teach through some karmic retribution. Gays should have seen the opportunity this represented deny service to gays, gay business owners can deny service to Christians after all, this is any business owners right.
From experience, thinking things through gives an entirely different perspective that isn’t being uttered by the Mainstream Media. If gays and their supporters had done the same they would have seen an invaluable opportunity to encourage gay business owners to take advantage of the Bill and deny service to Christians and apply a lesson that needed to be learned against those they figure are against them. Basically, use the Bill that was supposed be against gays against the Christians. I guess you can call that fighting fire with fire. I certainly don’t believe those that supported this Bill could have seen this angle coming at them due to their pride. However, maybe other states that are considering this Bill need to heed this post and realize you are calling to play a very game that could backfire on you at a moments notice. While I support religious liberties for even Christians I also support those who use the Bill to their advantage as well. Being a so-called fence sitter gives me a nice point of view of the political landscape.
First, it must be up to individual states and when I mean states I mean the PEOPLE voting on gay marriage legislation in that state. let’s face it, a true democracy is allowing the people to vote for things that they feel affect them. My fathers country of Uruguay does this and it works to their benefit. They are far more democratic and politically informed then we are despite how much we pride ourselves. When it comes to democracy and being informed we are pathetic. If we were truly informed we wouldn’t have Obama as President, we’d have the political scales balanced and not be so much in debt. So the gay marriage issue needs to be up to the people and not the government. Period.
And second, when writing up the legislation to be voted on by the public it needs to included a clause that protects and allows religious based businesses and institutions from being penalized for denying marriage of gays in their worship and/or denying gays services for their marriage ceremony. Eroding religious freedom for the freedoms of others is not freedom at all, but fascism. We wouldn’t think twice if some moronic Neo-Nazi advocated eroding rights of blacks for more rights for white people. We’d call it out for what it is: fascism. What’s happening to religious based businesses by gays is fascism plain and simple. There is NO skirting around this fact. Considering that there are plenty of Liberal Churches, non-denominationals like the Unitarian Universalists that will perform gay marriages and plenty of secular bakeries and catering businesses that will see gay marriage as more income there is ZERO reason to attack the religious out there for following what they believe no matter how wrong we feel it may be. This is America, not Fascist Italy. So, please stop being a fascist.
This is a simple solution. It may not make everyone happy, but it’s better than what is happening now. In the end someone is still going to complain, but with this solution if gay marriage is legalized by the people the religious are protected indefinitely by the law they disagree with. Hell, it might allow some religious to vote for the law despite being against gay marriage because it also benefits them as well. That’s IF the law includes my protection clause for the religious.