Taking anti-paganism too far

I get that for some people, pagan practices led them to some spiritually traumatic experience (demonic possession, oppression, influence etc, etc). I just don’t see how that justifies this rather obnoxious culture war attitude I get from other Catholics.

On the one hand, there’s them. But on the other, there are dozens of Catholic universities that offer further study into pagan mythology. Everything from classic art to modern pop fiction draws heavily from a lot of pre-Christian folklore. (Including but not limited to Greek, Chinese, Norse, Japanese, Aztec, Babylonian, Celtic, Irish etc.) Fields like archaeology and anthropology include them in their curriculum.

People say there’s a difference between appreciating the mythology and that of the actual pagan religion. So, why is it then that culture warriors refuse to care about this difference? Some of them go so far as to dismiss the value of studying mythology from a literary perspective, claiming that all the world needs is Sacred Scripture, Lives of the Saints, and the Catechism. (I guess these people would like to see more churches built in place of museums and libraries huh.)

Ironically, medieval monks who could’ve boasted twice as much piety as these people were also the ones responsible for preserving much of Europe’s pre-Christian folklore. (Needless to say, that might just be the tip of the iceberg. It feels like this sudden hostility to what Tolkien called ‘Fairy Stories’, as well as their non-European counterparts, is a modern attitude.)

So really, as much as there seems to be this evangelical call to shun paganism, can’t we all realize that it’s being taken too far? :shrug:

Most Catholics do not hate or show animosity towards paganism. However, as a false and demonic set of religions, we need to witness to them. :thumbsup:

I haven’t seen to many contemporary Catholics criticize the study of mythology or ancient Pagan cultures. I have seen a vocal minority condemn fiction that has a magical element. Is this what you mean?

They tend to intermingle and to say they are just ‘vocal’ is getting to be an understatement. It’s like they’re the village idiot that never shuts up! :shrug:

This sounds more like Fundamentalism (the branch of Protestantism) than Catholicism to me. Are you talking about a phenomenon mostly in the Philippines?

I know there are Catholics in the US who have been influenced by Protestantism, and who sometimes say off things… hey, I’ve done it myself!

But why worry about it, if you know it’s not really a Catholic idea?

My reasoning goes somewhere between a pre-emptive strike and that of a cautionary tale because the population of a Third World country seems unusually prone to believing things that are not actually taught by the Church.

There is nothing wrong per se when we read (or watch TV and movies or hear) stories with magical thinking and characters. They are a universal part of growing up. All cultures do it. Its how cultural values and concepts of right and wrong are transmitted, not religious or historic facts. The important thing is that the contents of the stories reflect love, forgiveness, steadfastness in suffering, belief in God and not things like distrust of authority, revenge and indifference to others.

I have seen some blatant anti Christian anti Catholic storytelling. The Golden Compass was the most blatant.

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