Witch wars revisited
Recent debate in the community about the label Pagan may well undermine many of the achievements this community has struggled so hard to obtain. As a community we have strength in numbers, our influence will only be eroded should individual paths diverge from the relative safety the Pagan umbrella.
Many of these individuals follow respected belief systems that have relatively few adherents in comparison to larger Pagan groups. It is a testament to the inclusiveness of our community that these groups are given equal time and space in the Pagan press and blogs to express themselves. This new Pagan media is the result of many decades of growth, education and outreach by the Pagan community.
Suddenly, small groups of sincere people have a great ability to influence debate in the broader Pagan community. While I applaud the participation, it is important to keep in mind that there are tens of thousands of Pagans and Wiccans that make up the backbone of the audience for this new media. There is little evidence that this issue has much credence among the majority of Pagans. It would seem that the desire of some to distance themselves from the Pagan identity is not reflected by their actions in posting to Pagan sites. These well-intentioned individuals ignore the privilege of their participation in a community that others have spent decades manifesting.
There are those of us who are old enough to remember the damage done by conflicts within the community in the past. Shall we split apart and revisit the days when the definition of our belief system was a divisive issue. Have we not learned from our own dark age (Witch wars of recent decades) that it is in unity that we achieve great freedoms for all who wish religious freedom to be the law of the land. Is it time once again to point the finger and label “the other” as separate and apart from us? Lets hope not.