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So, what's all this 'Pagan' stuff then?
That, dear reader, is a hard question to answer!
There are several links on the links pages (where else!) which will give fairly authoratitive information on both what paganism, or to be more accurate, neo-paganism, is about, and also what it's not - but they only go so far. The general principles are fairly easy to grasp, while there are many different pagan 'religions', they almost all share the same common values:
Beyond this, though, there is a deeper, personal aspect to it, many who have come to the Pagan faiths from other, more dogmatic religions, refer to their discovery of paganism as 'comming home'. That's certainly how it was for me - when in my late 20s I discovered Wicca, I found a name and structure to enshrine the basic principles I'd believed in and practiced all my life.
The 'Wiccan Rede', depicted in the graphic above, is an effective summary of general Pagan belief - 'An it harm none, do as you will'. The basic idea being that you can pretty much do as you please, as long as what you do does no unnecessary harm, to yourself, to others, or to nature as a whole. Obviously, this can be taken to extremes, but most pagans interpret it with a fair degree of common sense, so that while say, eating meat is perfectly acceptable, factory farming and animal abuse, aren't.
The one thing that almost all pagans do agree on is that there is no such thing as 'One True Way' - so you won't find pagans fighting holy wars over who's god is the greater, or condemming each other to eternal torment over some minor difference in belief, or hunting down heretics to burn at the stake. In general we're open and accepting of others, and value all as equals, regardless of race, gender, sexuality or lifestyle.
Our gods are part of our lives, we carry them in our hearts and minds, and we know both their glory and their faults.
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