I believe the basic criteria is essentially very different from that
of secular (formally organised) religions. Where simple spirituality is
essentially from the heart, and Christianity is deliberately empowered
away from the individual heart, to that of a group-mind-with-authority-
vested-in-male-power-figure, primal religious spirituality is individualistic
off necessity. It varies from 'the solitary pagan' to that of the single
sex group, to a mixed sex group. And you get various forms of formality,
and informality, over a very wide turf. In other words, you would need
to check out zillions of sub-groups to discover the 'norm'.
> Tom writes:
> > but, as i have harped on for the last twenty four hours on the list,
> > is anyone going to hold celtic paganism to the same scrutiny that
> > they do for christianity? its only fair.
> >Thomas Finan
> > Catholic University of America
> Well, one of the problems here, is paganism is mostly a recreated religion
> (ooh I can just feel the heat of those flames a-commin'). Basically,
> no one states that they practice the religion of 1000BC in-toto. They
> admit to dropping the sacrifices/headhunting etc. by the wayside.
> Unfortunately, Christianity has not been given that same leeway, to
> say they've dropped the Inquisition and witchburnings by the wayside.
> Also, Christianity is lumped as a whole, and not taken for its
> individual factions - Catholic, Born-Again, Methodist, etc.
> If we took paganism as one big lump, we could pick on, perhaps,
> the all-female versions of Wicca for being gender-biased, just as one
> can pick on Catholicism for not having female priests. It is difficult, mostly
> due to the lack of "Biblical" text equivalents, general public
> knowledge, and no formal public history of the pagan faith
> (and by that I mean who knows wwhat pagans were doing 200
> years ago?) to do a critique of paganism.
> just my afternoon 2 cents...
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