Occultic religions

As I am reading and investigating some issues with various pagan and occultic religions, it strikes me that they have perspectives similar to, and act quite differently from what the Church teaches us about them. I am not apologizing in any way for them, but being from a Catholic Conservative upbringing, I am surprised at how different their culture is versus what I was taught. I am not condoning it, but to address it, and more importantly the people in it, it helps to understand it.

They will make the case that their gods are loving, and seek to grant wisdom and help to people. Even people who have followed those paths for years still come across as loving, compassionate, helpful. I would have expected them to become either bitter or dead inside over time, but I am not observing this.

The people in their forums are very similar in breakdown to what I see in society. Most are encouraging and friendly. A few seem angry all the time, etc. The angry ones are usually excluded at some point from the community.

I don’t see an overall viciousness in their approach to discussing their beliefs.

They have a stated emphasis that possession is not a goal in their instruction and prayer. Most often, it is the emphasis on “the self” as God, as opposed to demon worship.

However, for those practicing it, they do warn that you must commit - that their gods get frustrated with students who do not focus and commit.

Many of them have tossed out the popularized versions of things like Levayen Satanism, criticizing him for the slant he put on it. I find that interesting.

I have some very good Wiccan friends. They’ve both come from Pagan families. I believe he is 3rd generation Wiccan and his wife is 2nd generation. They are raising their children a Pagans.

Their “rede” of “harm none” and belief that what you “put out there” will come back to you “threefold”…if you extend blessings they will come back threefold…if you extend curses they will come back to you threefold as well.

They hold a “modified” view of kharma. They believe that this life is where “kharma” is played out, and how one conducts their lives “this time” will determine where they find themselves on the “wheel of life” next time…but as my friend says, “One should not expect the next life to be better because THIS IS the next life.”

They see their spells and chants as a form of prayer…one of the songs they sing in circle is called the “Burning Times”…

"In the cold of the evening, they used to gather.
Neath the stars in the meadow, circled near the old oak tree.

At the times appointed… by the seasons…
of the earth, and the phases of the moon.

In the center, often stood a woman,
equal with the others, respected for her worth.

One of the many… we call the witches,
the healers, the teachers, of the wisdom of the earth.

And the people grew in the knowledge she gave them,
herbs to heal their bodies, spells to make their spirits whole.

Hear them chanting healing incantations,
calling for the wise ones, celebrating in dance and song…"

I’ve attended one such gathering…and it was a moving experience.

Well, what exactly does the Church teach? Let’s review the Catechism:

The Catholic Church recognizes in other religions that search, among shadows and images, for the God who is unknown yet near since he gives life and breath and all things and wants all men to be saved. Thus, the Church considers all goodness and truth found in these religions as “a preparation for the Gospel and given by him who enlightens all men that they may at length have life”.

The problem here is not how others approach their divinities, but the fact that there is only one God :shrug: Thus, either they are projecting or personalizing aspects of God into separate divinities, or they are partially deceived by spirits who want to be worshiped as divinities (a characteristic exclusive to the fallen angels).

We don’t just come up with these beliefs: we know that they are true by direct confrontation with the world of darkness and the fallen angels, as well as by the revelations of God, both publicly and privately :shrug:

“The Devil hath power to assume a pleasing form.”

Pleasing, enjoyable, friendly, or anything else, they are still Pagan, which means they have rejected God in favor of their own interpretations. The Self as God is a disturbing concept, which is basically stating that you exist wholly of your own accord, and as such your own well being is all that you need to focus on. It’s a selfish viewpoint, really.

As to the people themselves, I have only ever known two Pagans in my life, one of them fit every negative stereotype you’ve ever heard of about Pagans; manipulative, self centered, deceitful. The other is a pretty good person all tings considered. As in all things, it’s difficult to generalize/

what exactly (and just as importantly, where exactly) do you mean about what the church teaches us about how pagans act?

the church, through an impressive divine revelation that spans thousands of years, teaches us that there is only one God, but that there are other powers that exist that are more powerful that we are; these other powers, naturally, don’t come anywhere near God’s power. we know almost nothing about those powers; it makes sense that some are benevolent and some are not, but it makes just as much sense that we should worship the one, true god instead of the lesser ones. the church specifically teaches us to not seek out these other powers and definitely to not serve them. we can’t be sure of the benevolence of these lesser gods who, regardless, have all the power necessary to deceive us and who might even be demonic. the safest bet is with God’s church and there is more than enough proof of His benevolence and worthiness of worship.

It’s simpler than that though, since every spirit that God created must either love Him and serve Him or not love Him and not serve Him, we could never find a “benevolent” power outside of our search for God anyway. If anyone tries to worship something or someone outside of God’s Church, it’s certain that they are either deceiving themselves or being deceived by some malevolent being.

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