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Author Topic: Special Topic: Why We're Touchy About Defining Paganism  (Read 44778 times)
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« Reply #14: April 13, 2007, 02:20:30 pm »

A definition is generally a statement that describes what something is. The statement above seems to be describing what Paganism is not.

*nods*  And that's one of the objections that comes up about that definition quite a bit.  But...  Well, see the article for what happens when you try to get specific about what a Pagan is.  Hasn't worked yet.  And it's not even about trying to find a brief description; it could be pages long and we'd still have these issues.  (Actually, we'd probably have them more, because the more specific you get the more there is that people can and will object to.)  So for the moment we're stuck with defining what we're not.

I'm not sure I really mentioned this in the article, although I should've...  But it might also help to remember that when we talk about "the Cauldron's official definition", we're not necessarily talking about a workable real-world definition that can be used to explain anything to someone who's never heard of a Pagan.  It would be great if we could come up with something like that, but, well, see above.  What we're largely getting at is that this is how it's used here at this forum; that when someone talks about Paganism (without getting more specific) here, this is generally what you can expect them to be talking about.  I suppose in that way it's more of a baseline than an actual definition.
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