just a question.
on a few occasions I noticed that Christians often have a negative attitude towards pagans.
This can be shown more or less openly, by actions, by words, by behaviours,by many different things.
My question is: why do some Christians hate Pagans so much?
Why do they despise them?
It tends to become something personal…like for instance, you don’t know me and I don’t know you, but as soon as you know I’m Pagan, you take it personally.Why?
This is what I can’t figure out…because it is normal to disagree, and even to despise people’s opinions at times. But why taking it personally? I have seen Christians who refused to talk to some people just because they were of a Pagan belief.
Would those people, or any other Christian that can recognize himself/herself in this description, act as such with a Muslim or with a Jew?
Would you push somebody away and end up being rude with someone because of their faith? Why?
Personally, I think Pagans tend to be rather interesting people. I don’t know why some Christians respond to your beliefs in a negative way. Perhaps they feel threatened or obligated to “save” you. If so, it is rather rash of them.
Sadly, I have noticed that a lot of Pagans have really strong feelings about Christians or Christianity. And not good feelings either.
I hope our discussion here sustains a spirit of openness and friendship. Respect for one another is essential to any discussion.
I personally have a pagan friend… so don’t think I’m hating… But I think the general tension between the two religions, Christianity and the various forms of paganism, is a direct result of the stark difference that exists in their beliefs. It seems to me that their is little to no common ground, and, as a Catholic, it would be very hard to “accept” the practice of magic, spells, chants, sometimes drug usage, strange rituals and sacrifices, and all the very unusual things I have heard about to the point that it would simply be very unattractive and somewhat repulsive.
It is in my experience that faithful christians are looking to meet people who will support them in their faith or at least understand them in regards to certain tenents, the most fundamental being, monothemism. When such a christian meets a pagan, it would be very hard to overcome such a large belief gap. That’s not to say it’s not possible, but it might explain your experiences.
However, don’t be confused by a Christian’s negative response. They certainly want you to know and experience Jesus as she does, but they may not know how to respond appropriately. If you would like true dialouge and would like to make some friends, the CAF is the place to be.
I don’t personally know any pagans, as far as I am aware of their religious beliefs anyway, nor do I despise anyone who is a genuine follower of any religious faith. The proviso being that they respect my Catholic faith as well.
I think most people do invest a lot in their faith - emotionally and in other ways. And they can, rightly or wrongly, feel threatened or attacked when they encounter people whose faith is equally strong but leads them in a different direction. This doesn’t just apply to Christians.
I’ve got some friends and even a relative or two that consider themselves “pagan.” I hope no Christian goes around hating anyone, pagan or not.
What’s funny is that I’ve never had an argument with any pagans over religion/spirituality, but we usually disagree almost 100% on all things political.
I know exactly what you are talking about. This attitude is very immature and useless, and generally condemned, as if you want tolerance then you have to give some.Moreover a negative attitude will never bring any kind of spiritual development. Rotten apples grow on both trees unluckily;) I know of people who *claim * to be Pagan, and are negative people also.
My experience in College has been the opposite, the New Agers dislike me because I’m Christian. Example: all I needed to do was cross myself and silently say my prayer over my food in the Cafeteria and one of the Girls at my table would right away get on my case. It’s like, excuse me. I’m not criticizing you because you’re decked out in Gaelic atire for Yule or Bel-tane, why can’t you extend the same criticism for me?
I would then recieve a lecture about how Easter really is a pagan holiday because it’s in the spring. That’s when I inform her that actually it conicides with the Jewish feast of Passover, which is marked by the first full moon of spring. I explained to her that cultures in general have kept their holidays at the markings of the seasons. Judaism did, Yom Kippur in the Autumn, Passover in the Spring, the Feast of Boths and the Hanukkah in the Winter, etc. These feasts were carried over into Christianity. Easter=Christian Passover. Easter is called Pascha in the East, which is derived from the Greek word for “Passover.”
It was a very frustrating experience.
I have no issue with Pagan’s. In fact, I have more issues with people who claim to be Christain but don’t act like Christians. I post on another website that has a “Multi-Cultural, Multi-Religous” forum… The Pagans are constantly making fun of the Christians, and when you tell them that they are being offensive they tell you to get a sense of humor… On the same website there is a “Christian” forum where the Christains tell the Pagans they are going to hell… Who are they to judge the Pagans… Anyways, it really goes both ways.
Very well said LilyM, unfortunatley the New Agers I encoutered in High School and College were very negative towards my beliefs. My friends in High School were all into New Age. I even had a deck of Tarot Cards, what made me stop using them was not someone telling me I’m damned to Hell, it was my own personal feeling that I got as I became more and more drawn to the faith. I respected my friends beliefs, but they could not respect mine. Many of my friends from High School went to the same college as mine. When they started making inappropriate comments about priests and the sex scandals, that’s when I isolated myself. It was very hurtful and I was lonely, but I made it through college despite it. Never once did I tell them that they needed to be Catholic.
That has been my experience, but I never told them they were going to Hell.
I know exactly what you are saying… It is that way on that “other” forum… (which I had to look at when Catholic Answers was down )
You know why, in my opinion, that is not our Catholic way… We would never say that!
It’s always a little dicey to assume that a group (especially such large groups as ‘Christians’ and ‘pagans’) possesses any kind of trait based simply on what any individual person sees, or hears, from a very tiny percentage of self-identified members of a group. Just because I might call myself “Christian” (or pagan, or anything else) does not mean that I practice my faith properly; even if I try my best, I’m still going to fall short sometimes. How do you then know that Mr. X (who says he is Christian, and hates pagans), or Ms. Y (who says she is pagan and hates Christians) actually really ARE members of the faith they claim? How do you know that this hatred is ACCEPTED, let alone ENCOURAGED, by members of the faith? See the problem? So I’d suggest to the OP to take any kind of accusation or assertion that “Christians hate pagans” or “Pagans hate Christians” with a HUGE grain of salt.
I had a friend who i havent seen for about a year who was raised catholic but converted to Wicca. I try to find out more about his new found faith and why he decided to switch. He didnt tell me alot. he was very secretative when i asked him some questions.
I don’t have any problems with native religions. By training I am an anthropologist and if I were along one of the tributaries of the Amazon and came upon a previously undiscovered tribe, I would have no problem speaking to them about their religious beliefs because those beliefs exist as part of a living vibrant culture alive today. This would certainly be a pagan culture.
But paganism today? Hmm. From the knotwork and the early triskelion, I’d have to say you may be a pagan in a Celtic tradition? Could you tell me how the druidic, brehon and bardic traditions survived the last 1500 years? Remember, please, that with the exception of ogham, druidism relied upon memory and the passing down of lore from master to student. I am unaware of any druidic coven existing continuously through the last 1500 or so years. If you were to be able to conclusively prove that such a coven existed and continues to exist unbroken from the fall of the Romans, your discovery would rock the anthropological world to its foundations.
Unfortunately, the authentic cults of Cerunnos, Brighit, Llyr et al vanished around 1500 years ago. You can claim to be a pagan of the Celtic tradition but the honest fact remains that this “religion” was a creation of well-to-do British aristocrats in the late Victorian age - Butler, Gardner, etc. It is an invented “religion” just as surely as scientology.
I have had three friends in my life who claimed to be pagan. Two were followers of Gardnerian Wicca. One followed the Aesir. Of the three, only one is alive today. I submit to you my friend that you know not what you invoke. Our ancestors could claim that they did know what they invoked since the religion was in fact intact. Two dead friends under the most tragic circumstances and the third had his ritual room burn to the ground along with the rest of his house. To this day, I don’t know what these folks were messing with. I don’t believe they knew either.
Me? My little Irish Catholic genes were doing a “Danger Will Robinson” dance any time I got around their homes. These guys all knew their history too and we had many a long conversation. But it eventually got to the point where I had to disassociate myself from them. If you wan’t to know the truth, it had to be the action of my guardian angel.
So, no, I don’t personally hate “pagans” and I am more than willing to hold a conversation with them…and to pray that God has mercy on them when things go south.
When did I say I hated pagans?
oh…what a sec…that’s not me…sorry…nevermind…carry on… :o
I can think of three reasons I, personally, am annoyed with “Pagans”. I don’t hate them; they’re not a big enough issue for that, really. But they do annoy.
- You’re all posers. Where’s the blood? Where’s the fire? Paganism is not therapy, kiddies, it’s a real religion that demands things of you. If you meant it, you would make Snake Handlers look like Anglicans. I’ve read the real pagans, and you’re wusses. You’re basically play-acting agnostics who like to feel ‘spiritual’.
- You tortured us to death for a thousand years, but somehow pretend you’re the victims. Ever hear of St. Vaclav? He was nearly driven mad by his pagan mother, only saved by his Christian grandmother (paternal), and murdered by his pagan cousin. This was about a hundred years after Charlemagne. The history of the Czechs is chock-full of murderous pagans, as is the history of all Eastern Europe. You know how many of our martyrs had to drink molten gold, or be torn apart by wolves? These are your role-models, children.
- You’re just damn dumb. Frankly, I can get better philosophy from the bible-thumpers and the atheists than from you, yet the pagans invented philosophy. The Druids were a philosopher caste, akin to the Brahmin, while the bards knew their whole history in great detail; the Roman priests wrote philosophical tracts about as often as Catholic clergy do. But you just spout platitudes unworthy of grunge songs and you want me to treat you with respect?
I don’t hate pagans, just as I don’t hate most idiots, but frankly, you remind me far too strongly of Goths in a Jhonen Vasquez comic (Anne Gwish, for instance).
PS: Ogham was invented by Catholic monks, not the druids. Writing was taboo to the druids, though they did use Greek if they had to, because it weakened the memory.
There isn’t enough intelligence in this post to dignify a response.
You’re all posers.
I don’t hate pagans, just as I don’t hate most idiots
You’re just damn dumb.
I wasn’t offensive to you, so I don’t see why you should be offensive to me.
Ogham was invented by Catholic monks, not the druids. Writing was taboo to the druids, though they did use Greek if they had to, because it weakened the memory.
You tortured us to death for a thousand years
Know what you are talking about before posting here, guy.
I’m not following any particular path, so no I am not a Celtic Pagan, although I deeply admire Celtic culture.
Paganism was never completely eradicated. The cult survived in the countrisides in Europe, and was passed over within the family. I know because I have an example in my own family.
Thank you for your prayers, I welcome all good energy…but I don’t need any mercy, as I didn’t hurt anyone.
For me this is the right Path.