Paganism tends to be very much about the Journey rather than the Destination, and as there is no root Dogma, we tend to be incredibly flexible when it comes to Deity. Someone once remarked to me, Paganism was very much a practice of perception, and I would have to agree. There are many out there who follow Bast, the Egyptian Lady of Cats, but I can guarantee you, each of them will view Her in a different light, or have an individual relationship with Her.
Below you can find information on the major holidays used by most Pagans, especially those of the Wiccan persuasion.
Aaaand here are the holidays I celebrate:
This is by no means a complete list, and I doubt it ever will be. This is just to get anyone who’s interested started. Everyone needs a starting point.
Wicca – A diverse religion with no central authority or figure defining it. It is divided into various lineages and denominations, referred to as traditions, each with its own organisational structure and level of centralisation. Due to its decentralized nature, there is some disagreement over what actually constitutes Wicca. Some traditions, collectively referred to as British Traditional Wicca, strictly follow the initiatory lineage of Gardner and consider the term Wicca to apply only to such lineaged traditions, while other eclectic traditions do not.
Druidism – A form of modern spirituality or religion that generally promotes harmony and worship of nature, and respect for all beings, including the environment.
Ásatrú – A reconstruction of the old Nordic religions
Hellenism – A reconstruction of Greek practices
Kemetism – A reconstruction of Egyptian practices
Native American faiths – Very, very diverse. Each Nation will have its own stories and practices
Eclectic – A melting pot of various traditions. Bits taken from other practices to form a new, individual practice.
Occult – Hidden, or secret magic/practice
Syncretic – A blend of pagan and (usually) non-pagan beliefs
Folkloric – Practice that is influenced by legends, music, oral history, proverbs, jokes, popular beliefs, fairy tales and customs that are cultural traditions
Reconstructed – Practice that is constructed (or reconstructed) using literature, archeology, music, etc. of a particular people using a single pantheon.
Faery Tradition – Practice that focuses on the Fey and their lore and relation to our world
Family Traiditions – Traditions that are passed down between families
Strega Witches – Sect of Italian magic
Ceremonial Magic – a broad term used in the context of Hermeticism or Western esotericism to encompass a wide variety of long, elaborate, and complex rituals of magic.
I always hate this topic. I’ve read many, many accounts of Magic’s history, and I’ve yet to find one that matches another. I especially dislike our history as told by Paganism’s own kind. Most of it is incredibly Anti-Christian and prejudiced.
I remember very vividly when I was 18, and I had just started college. I had read somewhere (I cannot now remember where), the reason the Bubonic Plague had so stricken Europe was as a result of the Church, during the Witch Hunts and Inquisition, killing off so many dogs and cats, believing them to be Witch’s familiars. The rat population consequentially rose and spread the disease. I repeated this particular piece of garbage in front of a campus gathering of Pagans I had joined. Their shocked faces silenced me for the rest of the night. I have never felt so grossly ignorant in my life.
EVERYONE has killed someone else in the name of religion.
NO culture is exempt from that. Be it Norse, Egyptian, Jewish, or Christian.
We have to stop blaming current cultures and peoples for things done in their ancestors’ past. There is no reason why a Christian today should be blamed for something that happened over 7 centuries ago.
*Gets off soap box*
So I beg all of you, take our history with a tablespoon of salt. I will not post an actual history here, as I do not know it, but I will be looking for reputable books that may help and linking them. Keep checking back.
What is Paganism?
– a religion that has many gods or goddesses, considers the earth holy, and does not have a central authority. (Merriam-Webster)
– Paganism is a broad group of religions, including modern pagan religions, indigenous religions and historical polytheistic religions. Modern knowledge of old pagan religions comes from several sources, including: anthropological field research records, the evidence of archaeological artifacts, and the historical accounts of ancient writers regarding cultures known to the classical world. Paganism is often taken to exclude monotheism, and to express a worldview that is pantheistic, polytheistic, and/or animistic. In a wider sense, paganism has also been understood to include any non-Abrahamic, folk, or ethnic religion. (Wikipedia)