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Author Topic: Responsibility and Paganism  (Read 30936 times)
RandallS
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« Topic Start: January 16, 2008, 02:30:41 pm »


Web Site Article Discussion ThreadThis thread is for discussion of a specific article on our web site. Please limit discussion to questions and comments specific to this article. Feel free to start a new thread in an appropriate board if what you wish to discuss is not specific to the named article. Note that if you have arrived here from the discussion link on this article on our web site and are not a member of this message board, you will need to register an account to post in this thread. Thank you.

Responsibility and Paganism

"It's not my fault! It's her fault!"

"I didn't know... didn't research... didn't think..."

"You can't blame me... it wasn't against the Rede!"

"Why are these bad things happening to me?? I didn't do anything bad... not really...."

Do any of these sound familiar? As a mother I expected to hear them time after time. After all, one of my responsibilities as a mother was to teach my children to deal with their responsibilities. What has surprised and saddened me is the increasing numbers of times I hear comments like the above from people in the Pagan community.

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« Reply #1: January 16, 2008, 02:42:20 pm »


I personally think that there is way too little personal responsibility taken in this world. It runs rampant everywhere, but is very obvious in the Pagan community. I do believe that it cheapens pagan religions every time someone refuses to take responsibility for their actions within those religions.
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« Reply #2: January 16, 2008, 05:38:39 pm »

I personally think that there is way too little personal responsibility taken in this world.

Because of the far the Far Right in the US have used the words "personal responsibility," I'm very wary of agreeing with statements like yours anymore until I know exactly what the speaker means by "personal responsibility."  This is a sad commentary on the world in and of itself. Sad
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« Reply #3: January 16, 2008, 06:38:57 pm »

Because of the far the Far Right in the US have used the words "personal responsibility," I'm very wary of agreeing with statements like yours anymore until I know exactly what the speaker means by "personal responsibility."  This is a sad commentary on the world in and of itself. Sad

I know nothing of the far right OR their use of the term "personal responsibility". I despise politics. LOL I assure you I'm not "one of them".
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« Reply #4: January 16, 2008, 10:46:27 pm »

I know nothing of the far right OR their use of the term "personal responsibility". I despise politics. LOL I assure you I'm not "one of them".

I didn't say that you were, just that because of their weird usages of the term I have to know what a person thinks "personal responsibility" entails before I can say much. The term has lost the "common meaning" it once had.
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« Reply #5: January 17, 2008, 03:54:59 am »

I didn't say that you were, just that because of their weird usages of the term I have to know what a person thinks "personal responsibility" entails before I can say much. The term has lost the "common meaning" it once had.

It seems to be a reflection of society in general, where a lot of people are looking for someone else to blame their woes on. Increased litigation is blurring the lines between who is truly at fault and who is just trying to pass the buck.

I don't see it as purely being paganism either. You see it in politics, you see it in business. And a lot of the root cause of the problem as I see it, is that not enough people are standing up and saying, "Enough!" I have stepped in and told off a neighbours kids while living in a flat because they treated my front porch as their play area at 8am on a Sunday morning. I also told their mother when I dragged them back home and got her out of bed to inform her what they were up to.

I'm sick of hearing that teachers are to blame because kids misbehave or aren't learning as much as they should. Where are these parents supervising their kids doing their homework? They'd pick up problems a lot sooner if they helped out there. As for manners, if they aren't enforced at home, how can parents expect them to be enforced at school?

</end rant>
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« Reply #6: January 17, 2008, 08:38:01 am »

It seems to be a reflection of society in general, where a lot of people are looking for someone else to blame their woes on. Increased litigation is blurring the lines between who is truly at fault and who is just trying to pass the buck.

I don't see it as purely being paganism either. You see it in politics, you see it in business. And a lot of the root cause of the problem as I see it, is that not enough people are standing up and saying, "Enough!" I have stepped in and told off a neighbours kids while living in a flat because they treated my front porch as their play area at 8am on a Sunday morning. I also told their mother when I dragged them back home and got her out of bed to inform her what they were up to.

I'm sick of hearing that teachers are to blame because kids misbehave or aren't learning as much as they should. Where are these parents supervising their kids doing their homework? They'd pick up problems a lot sooner if they helped out there. As for manners, if they aren't enforced at home, how can parents expect them to be enforced at school?

</end rant>
I completely agree. Many parents today seem to be trying to shift the responsibility of raising their children onto the teachers. This is not what hte teachers are for and imo is taking away time from the teachers true purpose which is to teach the subjects we need to know to function well in society. Not to teach them right from wrong and manners. Not to instill honesty and responsibility, that needs to be taught at home. It is easy for parents to blame the teachers and not themselves for lacking basic parenting skills. I find it very maddening. It seems to me kids who go to school for a want to learn and succeed are becoming rare and the schools are being used as a babysitter. I know there are parents who still supervise homework but really feel there are no where near the amount of them there were 25 yr ago.
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« Reply #7: January 17, 2008, 10:47:05 am »

I know nothing of the far right OR their use of the term "personal responsibility". I despise politics. LOL I assure you I'm not "one of them".

I could take a guess at what the far right could come up with, but that might be too far off topic.

I think that personal responbility is for your own self, and your own actions.  It is two part. 
1.  Acknowledging that one's action 'A' caused consequence 'B'.  "I did a love spell, now I'm stuck with someone I don't really like, and it's only my fault."
2.  Making the responsible choice not to perform an action you know might have negative consequences in the first place.  "I'm not going to drive home from the bar, because even though I only had one drink, I still could hurt someone."

Basically, what Elspeth said.
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Dania
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« Reply #8: January 17, 2008, 02:09:14 pm »

I didn't say that you were, just that because of their weird usages of the term I have to know what a person thinks "personal responsibility" entails before I can say much. The term has lost the "common meaning" it once had.

Sorry I should have responded with something more "worthwhile" last night. Wasn't feeling well. So here's my "real" response:

Personal responsibility, to me, means a lot of things. But the short version is that it means taking responsibility for your actions, AND their consequences, and not taking any action without some sort of understanding of the consequences and willingness to accept not only those consequences but any unforeseen ones as well.
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RandallS
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« Reply #9: January 17, 2008, 05:32:09 pm »

2.  Making the responsible choice not to perform an action you know might have negative consequences in the first place.  "I'm not going to drive home from the bar, because even though I only had one drink, I still could hurt someone."

ALL actions are likely to have some negative consequences -- even breathing. Certain actions, like driving after drinking are more likely to have severe negative consequences, of course.

Note that I'm not arguing that people should not take responsibility for their actions and decisions, just that it is very easy to push this from common sense into a "cult of personal responsibility" that fails people who are basically victims of circumstance/genetics/etc.
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« Reply #10: January 17, 2008, 05:38:35 pm »

Note that I'm not arguing that people should not take responsibility for their actions and decisions, just that it is very easy to push this from common sense into a "cult of personal responsibility" that fails people who are basically victims of circumstance/genetics/etc.

Exactly. It takes judging what is likely to happen, what could happen, whether or not you're willing to accept the risk, and, after going through with it, accepting the consequences.

Also, not every negative consequence is necessarily bad. Sometimes you come to a "lesser of two evils" situation...or a situation where you know there will be a negative consequence for you, but you feel that the action still needs to be taken and you are willing to accept the consequence.

ETA: I should have said "not every action with a negative consequence is necessarily bad". Because the very definition of a negative consequence is that it is bad. Duh. I should read over BEFORE I hit post.
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« Reply #11: January 17, 2008, 07:22:57 pm »

Exactly. It takes judging what is likely to happen, what could happen, whether or not you're willing to accept the risk, and, after going through with it, accepting the consequences.

That's better put!  What I meant to say.
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« Reply #12: January 18, 2008, 01:48:47 am »

<snip> it is very easy to push this from common sense into a "cult of personal responsibility" <snip>

In case you hadn't noticed, common sense is a species at critical risk of extinction these days (or so it seems IMNSHO). Grin

If you order a hot coffee, spill it, and then sue the company because you burnt yourself on something that would be equally as hot if you made it at home, then you *should* lose (should). I hate the fact that our society is intent on wrapping us in cotton-wool for our 'own good'. I am perfectly capable of working out that a coffee is hot without a sign thank you, no I don't need a warning on a knife block that those knives might be sharp thanks, why of course taking sleeping tablets and then working with heavy machinery is a silly thing to do!

Urgh. Common sense is the least common thing on the planet.
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« Reply #13: January 18, 2008, 08:26:01 am »

In case you hadn't noticed, common sense is a species at critical risk of extinction these days (or so it seems IMNSHO). Grin

If you order a hot coffee, spill it, and then sue the company because you burnt yourself on something that would be equally as hot if you made it at home, then you *should* lose (should). I hate the fact that our society is intent on wrapping us in cotton-wool for our 'own good'. I am perfectly capable of working out that a coffee is hot without a sign thank you, no I don't need a warning on a knife block that those knives might be sharp thanks, why of course taking sleeping tablets and then working with heavy machinery is a silly thing to do!

Urgh. Common sense is the least common thing on the planet.

http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur78.htm

the McDonalds coffee thing.  MCdonalds was in the wrong.  THey kept thir coffee well above industry average and so on.
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« Reply #14: January 18, 2008, 08:48:51 am »

In case you hadn't noticed, common sense is a species at critical risk of extinction these days (or so it seems IMNSHO). Grin

If you order a hot coffee, spill it, and then sue the company because you burnt yourself on something that would be equally as hot if you made it at home, then you *should* lose (should).

This is an example of how the good idea of taking personal responsibility can be turned into a "Cult of Personal Responsibility."  From the evidence that came out at the trail in this case, McDonalds was keeping its coffee at much higher temperatures that the industry standard (and much higher temperatures than any normal person not privy to McDonald's operating procedures would expect). They were doing so because higher temperatures made the coffee last longer which increased there profit and they continued to do so in spite of a number of burns their over-heated coffee had caused in the past.  In other words they choose profit over safety and the "huge judgement" was only one's day's estimated income from selling the coffee.

This is an example of how the "cult of personal responsibility people" seem to think only the little people need to accept personal responsibility for their actions while the decisions and actions of important people. wealthy people, and businesses are mysteriously immune to have to bear responsibility for their actions.
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