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Author Topic: What DON'T you believe in...and why not?  (Read 18456 times)
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« Topic Start: October 21, 2007, 01:39:38 pm »

"Paganism" being a broad umbrella term, one can read about all kinds of things at this site. I'm curious to get a sense of how widespread among Cauldronites certain beliefs are or aren't.

So what beliefs commonly held among pagans don't you subscribe to, and why not? This thread isn't meant to offend anyone who does believe in those things, so let's put the caveat up front that these are personal perspectives based on individual experiences and opinion. I just want to get a sense of where people's heads are.

I'm a hard science guy--give me demonstrable proof backed by repeatable experimentation--so that makes a lot of things suspect in my eyes. For me, in no particular order:

Astrology--With the exception of the sun and moon, I don't see how the position of heavenly bodies can influence our persons, let alone our destinies. Plus an astronomer told me that in the thousands of years since the ancient Greeks devised their system, the position of Earth has shifted relative to the stars such that the whole thing is off by an entire astrological sign.

Faeries--In a literal sense, no. The tales about them speak volumes about the human psyche, but I don't believe they physically exist.

Reincarnation--I'm on the fence as far as past lives, but lean towards no. I believe in reincarnation literally, in that new life springs from death all around us all the time.

Magic--Nearly all of it is suspect for me. The statement is qualified because I believe strongly in the power of the human mind, and of thought to influence our world. To the extent one's perceptions change, the world changes. That leaves the door slightly open.

UFOs--It's not totally out of the question, but most of the stories are so preposterous! But maybe that's because I used to read the Weekly World News too much (gods, how I miss that thing)

Atlantis--No.

But I'm making an effort to go through life more open-minded...
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« Reply #1: October 21, 2007, 01:47:17 pm »

"Paganism" being a broad umbrella term, one can read about all kinds of things at this site. I'm curious to get a sense of how widespread among Cauldronites certain beliefs are or aren't.

Well, since you're directing this one at Cauldronties, and not just Pagans, I'll answer. Smiley

I don't believe in any of it - deities, magic, psychic powers, faeries, etc.  I don't believe science already knows everything there is to know.  Heck, I don't think any scientist thinks that.  But I don't think there's anything beyond the 'mundane.'
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« Reply #2: October 21, 2007, 01:49:36 pm »


The biggest thing I don't believe in is Karma. I believe that not all things come back to you, some do, some don't. Good deeds DO go unrewarded. Bad deeds DO go unpunished. I do believe that sometimes a deity decides that your ass needs kicked for something you do, or that you need rewarded and it happens; but not because of some universal force of Karma. I have also seen a few examples of people using Karma to 'blame the victim' (something happened 'because of something they did in a past life', etc.)

On that note I don't believe in the Threefold Law either.
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« Reply #3: October 21, 2007, 01:58:56 pm »


So what beliefs commonly held among pagans don't you subscribe to, and why not?

Well, I'm very open-minded, but also very skeptical. I like proof.  Wink So, while I am all for people believing in what I don't, here's some things I don't put much stock in.

Karma. - never seen it work. Also, it doesn't exist in my religion, which goes well with my personal opinion.

The Wiccan Rede. - Not so much a belief, but here it is. I'm not Wiccan. Doesn't fit me. I have my own set of rules to live by.

Angels and Demons. - spirits, yes. Creatures, yes. all sorts of Fey and wee folk, yes. Those two, no. Of course, those aren't commonly held beliefs among the majority of pagans, but I've met far too many that believe in them, so I'm including them on the list.

Lost cities (Atlantis and Mu). - I do believe in lost civilizations. I don't believe in these extremely advanced lost civilizations.

Crystals. - I've heard they work, but a bad experience with a psychotic ex who used crystals as a guide to every aspect of life ruined them for me. Every time I see one, I think of him, and he was such a fluffy bunny that I tend to dismiss them due to his insanity.

And I'm kinda on the fence about astrology.


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« Reply #4: October 21, 2007, 02:41:39 pm »


I don't believe in:

-Pantheism
-"All gods are one god"
-Astrology
-Karma
-Wiccan Rede
-Faeries (in the Victorian and fantasy sense as they are commonly viewed today)
-Animals totems and spirit guides
-Indigo Children
-Crystals, chakras, and auras
-Magic and spells
-Otherkin and "shape-shifting"
-The Four Elements
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« Reply #5: October 21, 2007, 03:27:39 pm »


I like to keep an open mind but here are mine:

--Karma and the Rule of Three.  Just not apart of my belief system

--Astrology.  I sometimes read the horoscopes for a laugh but I don't hold much stock in it.

--Atlantis.  I don't believe that there ever was a continent in the center of the Atlantic that was home to a god-like people who used crystals for energy.  I personally hold more stock in the eruption of Thera combined with Plato's embellishments.  And plate tectonics sort of disproved this anyway.

--I don't believe that the pyramids were built by extraterrestrials/Atlantaens.  For one it's insulting to the Egyptians.  Second, the Egyptians left records of how the pyramids were built BY EGYPTIANS!

--Crystals, Chakras and Auras - never got into them.

--Jungian archetypes and "all gods are one god"

--The Wiccan Rede.  The "An it harm none" part clashed with the fact that at heart I'm a child of Nemesis.
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« Reply #6: October 21, 2007, 03:49:18 pm »

-Pantheism
-"All gods are one god"
-Astrology
-Karma
-Wiccan Rede
-Faeries (in the Victorian and fantasy sense as they are commonly viewed today)
-Animals totems and spirit guides
-Indigo Children
-Crystals, chakras, and auras
-Magic and spells
-Otherkin and "shape-shifting"
-The Four Elements

For me there is belief, and there is theory.

I have theories regarding otherkin and shape shifting.  Basically that we become accustomed to an astral form, one that we create because it is comfortable, easy and practice makes perfect.  A person who loves dragons is already going to know where they want the wings to connect and the tail proportions to body because they have put some time into the examination of the subject.

In dream work I can be whatever I'd like to be.  I just don't cross it over into my day to day life except for cases that puzzle me, or that I can't figure out.

Thus I don't believe in having been a dragon in a previous life, or that you have a drop of blood or DNA - or a single trait even that is not a human one.  This in my opinion is a form of anti-humanism.  Limiting one's definitions of human possibility based upon what they feel a 'normal' human should behave like, and taking the places that an individual varies from that as being 'more than human'.

Indigos and new agers make me grind my teeth.  All the 'loving' they throw at people is not 'love'  in any way shape or form, but a new type of proselytizing.  It is the same thing as a Christian offering to pray for you, even when they have made it abundantly clear that they don't give a damn about your soul, just making it clear to you that you are wrong in their eyes.  'praying' and 'loving' are being used to give the individual a sense of being on a moral high ground, since they are words that mean good things.  Long story short, passive aggression.

Fairies, as bodied creatures are a tough call for me.  I've had experiences with a something, that I call shadow cat, and have had some very real consequences connected to it.  (Fried the fuses and wiring in my husbands truck when I made a statement in a temper moment to the tune of $300.00)  I can't believe in one sort of non corporeal entity, and disbelieve in others without being a hypocrite.  SC isn't 'tangibly bodied' but seems to be a pool of energy that over time has grown. 

As far as fairies are concerned - and other constructs for that matter, I consider them to be energy pools that we shape through our desired perceptions.  You want to see something that reflects how a place or experience makes you feel.  Your psyche shapes the energy of that place, creating 'something'

As far as the victorian winged baby pigs that get passed off as fairies, perhaps in another era this was the container they preferred their positively perceived energy beings in.  Ribbons and roses have become rather passe outside of tattoo parlors and weddings though in my world.

Animal totems, I conditionally believe in.  I believe in them as you would choose a mascot or a coat of arms, and in the cases of more tradtitional characters, Coyote, Spider, Hawk and Buffalo Woman as spiritual landmarks, but I admit that most cases that people are using are watered down spiritual plagiarism. 

In the cases of the named individuals, I see them as deities and 'spiritual entities' rather than as totems.  It is kind of disrespectful to lower them to being handmaidens to any given purpose as a totem often seems to be used as.

I don't believe in good and evil as cosmic forces.  I don't believe in heaven or hell - or an afterlife for that matter.  Life is for the living and we must do what we must do to survive the lives we have.

I don't believe that the only ethical way to incorporate magic into a spirituality involve the rede, or limiting yourself based upon staying your own hand. 

I don't believe that the Aztecs and the Egyptians were/are related in any way shape or form, or that they are survivors of a lost land.  They were most likely aware of each other, but they are not the same.
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« Reply #7: October 21, 2007, 04:02:22 pm »

"Paganism" being a broad umbrella term, one can read about all kinds of things at this site. I'm curious to get a sense of how widespread among Cauldronites certain beliefs are or aren't.

Some of the following is probably better described as 'new age' rather than pagan.

I don't believe in the Rede.

I don't believe in Indigo Children.

I don't believe in otherkin in the sense that people might have something in their physiology which is 'other' than human.  I can fully understand that people might 'feel different' however.

I don't believe in prophecies about 2012.  Change happens.  Natural disaster happens. Crises and war happens.  Doesn't mean it's all going to happen at one date all at once.  I remember reading in the local paper about some people going up to a hill (always it's a hill) just before the Millenium as they thought 'the end' was coming.  Did they come down feeling relieved, or did they feel like fools, I wonder?  

I don't believe that there are incredibly powerful yet generally benevolent aliens hanging around sending messages to Earth via channelers. However I do accept that to many eyes that probably doesn't sound any wackier than believing in Gods and Goddesses who might wish to communicate with us in some way.  Perhaps it's the modern day equivalent.

I don't believe that there is a God and Goddess which all other gods are supposed to be facets of, although my polytheism isn't entirely 'rock hard' either.

Unsure about...

Ley lines, although some places feel like power spots to me, I'm unsure whether they are joined up in that way.

Magic.  I can believe in it completely as having a psychological effect, I have doubts about how effective it can be when directed outwards towards others and especially towards wide targets like 'world peace'.

Dragons.  I can buy the possibility of spirit beings who appear in this form, although I've never seen one  in meditation.  My guess is that mythology about them probably originates from people who discovered dinosaur skeletons and wondered what creatures they could be.

All that said, I don't have trouble believing in gods, fairies (as spirit beings but not sweet little Victorian cuties) or auras.  I've also been a 'guinea pig' for several sessions for someone who was studying crystal healing.  The sessions were incredibly relaxing and once or twice I felt a sense of emotional release.  Whether that is the effect of sitting there quietly while a kind and very intuitive person pays loads of attention to you is debatable I suppose.   But I've just remembered that was a period when I was going through chronic migraines and they stopped after that.  I can't prove there was a direct cause and effect at all, even to myself.  I'm not in the entirely crystal-sceptic camp because of that, though I do think there's an irony when people buy up loads of strip-mined crystals then proceed to meditate on 'healing the Earth' with them.
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« Reply #8: October 21, 2007, 04:59:27 pm »


I knew I forgot some things but first...

Quote
I don't believe in Indigo Children.

What the hell are Indigo Children?

Quote
I don't believe in otherkin in the sense that people might have something in their physiology which is 'other' than human.  I can fully understand that people might 'feel different' however.

I don't believe in prophecies about 2012.  Change happens.  Natural disaster happens. Crises and war happens.  Doesn't mean it's all going to happen at one date all at once.  I remember reading in the local paper about some people going up to a hill (always it's a hill) just before the Millenium as they thought 'the end' was coming.  Did they come down feeling relieved, or did they feel like fools, I wonder? 

I don't believe that there are incredibly powerful yet generally benevolent aliens hanging around sending messages to Earth via channelers. However I do accept that to many eyes that probably doesn't sound any wackier than believing in Gods and Goddesses who might wish to communicate with us in some way.  Perhaps it's the modern day equivalent.

These are the ones I forgot about and I generally agree with Lorraine.
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« Reply #9: October 21, 2007, 05:12:05 pm »

So what beliefs commonly held among pagans don't you subscribe to, and why not?
Here are a couple of the big ones.


Definitely Do Not Believe:

Good/Evil as Cosmic Forces that Govern the Destiny of Mankind and the Earth:
Good and evil exist as actions, and they exist in our natures. But they are not cosmic forces to which we must ally ourselves. Other than that, I... just can't really explain it well, so I'll leave it there.

"All gods are one god, etc.":
Nope.

The Rede:
The Celts were a warrior society. Harm ye none? Right.

Karma and the Threefold Law:
I don't believe in either of these as the definitions created by their traditions describe them. You mostly get what you give, but not because of a universal law like karma. My reasoning runs more like, "You can't always get what you want, but you always get what you NEED," because that is what I have experienced; if your gods think you NEED an ass-kicking, chances are you'll get one. Sorry for the cheesiness.  Tongue

I keep thinking about how in Irish belief, if a poet satirizes wrongly, it will double back on him and kill him. This is a kind of justice, but this justice is decided upon and meted out by the gods, not a universal force.


Doubtful, but thoughtful:

Reincarnation and Past Lives:
I believe fairly strongly in reincarnation but I have no idea how it works, nor do I have any idea if some past life elements carry over, if past lives are important at all. Some days I feel very strongly that things from my past lives are creeping up again, and other days I give myself a good smack and say, "PLEASE."

Auras, Chakras:
It seems to work well for some. I've never gotten into them. The closest thing I can think of (for chakras and energies in the body) are the Three Cauldrons of inspiration.

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« Reply #10: October 21, 2007, 05:12:22 pm »

So what beliefs commonly held among pagans don't you subscribe to, and why not? This thread isn't meant to offend anyone who does believe in those things, so let's put the caveat up front that these are personal perspectives based on individual experiences and opinion. I just want to get a sense of where people's heads are.

Things I don't subscribe to at all...  I don't buy into karma (or the Threefold Law) the way it's often described.  I do, however, put stock in the general idea that you reap what you sow, and my thoughts on the subject tend to bear some resemblance to what I've been told is a more traditional perception of karma that falls closer to "reap what you sow" than to some kind of cosmic reward/punishment system.  I'm not big on deities-as-archetypes or all-gods-are-one.  Indigo children and a bunch of the new-age white-light stuff falls into this category too.  So do most fantastical creatures like unicorns and dragons (although fairies are slightly different) and pretty much all the UFO stories I've heard.

I'm having a blank moment right now.  I can't think of what else.

There are probably more things that I just "lean skeptical" on.  I don't think I believe in them, but I'm a little less certain of that.  Astrology falls into this category, as do Otherkin.  (And I'm aware that there are lots of people here who do identify with that closely, and I don't mean to offend them--it's just something I have real trouble wrapping my head around.  The fact that I can see people I consider to be fairly reliable do identify with it is what keeps it from being in the "completely don't believe" category.)  Fairies fit in here too, and so does anything astral.  I tend to believe that most "paranormal" encounters have a purely mundane explanation.  Any magic with concrete, testable results (like changing the color of your eyes or miraculously healing someone) I tend to lump in here too; the magic I usually-but-not-always believe in tends to be more subtle.

There are a few things I'm completely undecided on.  Spirit guides, for example.  Miscellaneous spirits in general.  Ley lines.

And then there's things that I lean toward believing, but am not always sure I'm convinced of.  Most forms of divination and prophecy fit in here (although I also tend to believe that true prophecy is rarer than some people would have us believe), and so does most magic.

Other things that have been mentioned:  I don't put the Rede in here anywhere because although I don't follow it, to me it doesn't seem like a matter of belief per se.  It's just a piece of advice that I don't follow, much like "brush three times a day".  The four elements I also don't see as a matter of belief so much as just a way to approach magic and energy that either is or is not useful to a person.  (It happens to be useful to me, personally.)  The Gods I do believe in, in a very hard-polytheistic way.
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« Reply #11: October 21, 2007, 06:18:19 pm »

"Paganism" being a broad umbrella term, one can read about all kinds of things at this site. I'm curious to get a sense of how widespread among Cauldronites certain beliefs are or aren't.

I'm trying to add to this discussion, but my problem is that I kinda believe in everything. Cheesy

Not in the credulous, gullible, goofy way, I hope, but in a 'viewed from a certain perspective' sense.

The Rede - in it's full form and with understanding of the individual words used, why it's a rede and not a law, what common sense has to be applied, that it is positive advice, not negative, etc.

Karma - as a system of balance over time, no cookies or spankings but evening out, not something one can or should attempt to consciously manipulate (or even pay very much attention to, since if you do something really good today you might feel it gives you permission to be a jerk tomorrow.

Crystals - I feel something from them, and from most rocks, plants, etc.  Completely self-defined and experiential, but it is my experience and therefore trumps anything anyone might try to tell me.  (ego, me?)  The books tend to confuse me, so I 'touch before buying' and just use the endless lists for confirmation and a hint for what to look for/at.

Magic - I do it, I experience it, I believe in it.  I don't think it works well for 'large' purposes, simply because it is so difficult to get even three people on the same page I can't see getting a large enough group together that their areas of influence will connect and spread enough to affect a large area.  Healing the earth, doubtful - greening my campground, yep.  I think the most effective magic tends to be both personal and selfish.

Psychism - again, I do, I experience, I believe.  This includes empathy, divination, journeying within (I'm ambivalent about journeying outward), and 'connections' between people.

Atlantis - not literally, but the myth of past glories, falls from grace/destruction of eden, serve a purpose that I sometimes use as 'fuel' for spells.  I don't think I can explain that, but it kind of moves towards chaote territory a bit.

Fae, Fairies, Faeries, etc. - literally believe in them.  And I second Mandi's theory about what shapes they show up in when and why it is that way.

Otherkin - again, Mandi's theory makes sense to me.  I have some anomalous beliefs, or maybe desires to believe, in vampires, lycanthropes, etc. but no experience.

Indigos - nope, sorry.

Totems - yep.  Also teaching spirits and guides and guardians, but not as casually as I see discussed.  I don't think they are casual at all and I hope people don't routinely have dire enough circumstances to require them.

Gods - yep, with reservations.  I don't believe gods are so pre-occupied with individual humans that they will hang around hinting at them for years, or fight over them.  I do believe they will communicate if they have a reason, but I can't see them just chatting and hanging out.

Elements - lots more than four, not all willing to be personified, but having reachable consciousnesses.

New Age - lots of cool ideas, if you rein them in and apply them specifically in small - I don't think 'the Universe' cares one way or the other about my toothache but I can 'pull' white light and dull the pain.

Uhm, I think that's about enough flake-revelation for me for one thread. Cheesy

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« Reply #12: October 21, 2007, 07:08:21 pm »

What the hell are Indigo Children?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indigo_children
http://www.indigochild.com/
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« Reply #13: October 21, 2007, 07:47:45 pm »

"Paganism" being a broad umbrella term, one can read about all kinds of things at this site. I'm curious to get a sense of how widespread among Cauldronites certain beliefs are or aren't.

So what beliefs commonly held among pagans don't you subscribe to, and why not?

* snip *




I'm on the fence about reincarnation.

I don't practice the Craft, but I respect it. Does magic work? I have my doubts, but I wouldn't rule it out.

I'd like to believe in karma, but my gut tells me otherwise.

I'm a 'hard' polytheist, so I can't accept the most common Wiccan view of divinity.

Atlantis or other 'lost' civilizations? I doubt it, but even if they existed they weren't much more advanced than their contemporaries.

Have space aliens already visited Earth? It's a possibility, but like others have said it cheapens the accomplishments of our ancestors to look at the Pyramids, or the Nazca Lines, or any of their other significant acheivements and say, "Aliens did it!"
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« Reply #14: October 21, 2007, 08:23:22 pm »

I'm trying to add to this discussion, but my problem is that I kinda believe in everything. Cheesy

I'm pretty much in Absent's camp.  Nae to the threefold, but I have had wood sprites crawling through my thoughts. *shudders*

The Shadow of the Dragon protected me in Iraq.

As for reincarnation, a friend once emailed that we are as a river, and when the river reaches a fall, we break into droplets, and recombine at the bottom.  Energetically, this is plausible to me as a working theory.  Therefore some of us have (individually) bits of Lincoln, or Alexander, or Shulgi in us.

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"I've seen knights in armor panic at the first hint of battle.  And I've seen the lowliest unarmed squire pull a spear from his own body to defend a dying horse." - Kevin Costner as Robin of Loxley, Robin Hood; Prince of Thieves.

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