Friday, June 15, 2012

An Open Letter to the Pagan Elders

Dear Pagan Elders and those who have defined Paganism through their work,

Thank you for all of your work. Thank you for everything you have done in your lifetime and even in ours. Thank you for being the frontiersmen and women who have broken new ground --literally and metaphorically-- in our community with news, civil rights work, temples and libraries, and countless other achievements. Sincerely, thank you.

Selena Fox, pic courtesy of Religioscope
And what do you get for your accomplishments? Almost a hero-like status. Us, the "Younger Generation," look up to you and admire you. We hang on every. word. you. say (or type). We know your names even before we know your faces because of books, posts, videos and shows, conversation, and the internet. The tales of your deeds are spread far and wide and are the center of attention around the fire. You are inspiring people to others, the role model for children and adults alike. For your service to your community, you have been placed on a pedestal.

Is that fair? Is it right? For better or worse, you have become above or maybe just revered. You are now held up as demigods.

Maybe it isn't fair or right, but you have inherited a responsibility, one that demands total control over your actions and your words, your writings and even your friends. What you do has impact on the rest of our community, like denying transwomen into a women's circle that lead to entire groups breaking off.

Don't get me wrong, this is not only about Z. Budapest. It is also about Selena Fox, Patrick McCollum, Starhawk, Star Foster, and all the other Elders in our community. It is because of all these people that there are steps being made that are enormous. More Pagan clergy in prisons, more festivals being held worldwide, more religious equality and interfaith discussions, more temples being build, more books being written! We have gone so far since our "revival" it is more than inspiring.

Truly, being an Elder is a double-edged sword.

The Younger Generation of Pagans

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