There appears to be new pervasive negative influences rumbling through the pagan world. This movement is slowly building walls, creating boxes for sorting and labeling people, their beliefs, and practices. It’s negative, harmful, hurtful, constricting, and goes against everything I believe and think about paganism and spirituality. While these ideas are being spread and presented as a movement against racism and cultural appropriation, they actually enhance and promote racism. These ideas pave the way to restriction and segregation of human beings and their free will to practice their spirituality, to embrace the divine in their own way, through their own means, across cultural and ethnic boundaries.
The people promoting this type of restricted spirituality talk about “Closed Cultures”, often stating that before you can honor and worship a divinity from a culture that is not the culture you were born to, you need “permission”. I adore Kuan Yin, I have loved this goddess most of my life, I honor her in my home with statues in her image, with candles, herbs, and flowers on my home altar, with a tattoo on my body. I’m not going to contact the Chinese embassy and ask their permission to adore and worship Kuan Yin. Period. And no pagan anywhere in the world has a right to stamp their foot and demand that I seek this “permission”. Period.
My book, The Spiritual Feminist, has aroused the ire of the “Spiritual Separatists”, as I call them. I was accused of cultural appropriation and racism because my list of 45 goddesses include goddesses from around the world, goddesses from many different cultures and ethnicities. The irony of these accusations against me were not lost on me.
I’m an American, my own ancestry and heritage is a melting pot of several different cultures and ethnicities. I don’t have a right to worship or embrace Native American spiritual practices?…Both of my great-grandmothers have ties with American Native tribes. One is a quarter Lakota Sioux, the other is a full-blooded Chippewa woman. I don’t have a right to connect with Hawaiian deities?…My husband is Japanese, 3rd generation Pacific Islander, with family on the big island.
Do you see the danger here? The ignorance?
Everything I believe and feel about spirituality in general, and paganism in particular, is sullied and tainted by the “Spiritual Separatists” and their attempts to police our spirituality and spiritual practices. If we sit back and allow this movement to grow, if we allow these people to intimidate us, if we allow these people to insult and label us, we will contribute to the destruction of our religious freedom. Instead of trying to “protect” cultures and ethnicities from “appropriation”, they are dividing and classifying people according to race, they are in effect trying to implement spiritual separation.
Pagans unite for Religious Freedom! Support “Multi-Cultural Spirituality”.
Note ~ I talk about racism in paganism in the last segment of this radio broadcast:
“Something Wytchy” with host Onyx Moon
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