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Author Topic: Respectable Pagans?  (Read 17611 times)
Mithril
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« Reply #30: April 20, 2007, 03:48:57 pm »

"Think twice before you go confessing your secret to your parents, it could have disastorous consequences!"


I don't think I'll be disowned or anything, but I do think my parents will lose confidence in my decision making abilities. I'll probably lose quite a bit of respect, and they'll start to treat me like I'm going to become one of those 'wild' teenagers or something. What you said made sense, though, thanks.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2007, 03:55:48 pm by Mithril » Logged

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« Reply #31: April 27, 2007, 11:31:33 am »

I'll probably lose quite a bit of respect, and they'll start to treat me like I'm going to become one of those 'wild' teenagers or something. What you said made sense, though, thanks.

Erg yuck. In my case, though mum decided that when I got sick of putting up with her emotional abuse. That was before I moved out and thus before I became pagan.

I'm doing a BA in history and japanese. While I have two piercing in each ear and want tattoos, and believe in trying to have low impact on the environment, I'm no hippy. I'm actually a geek. I want to be a secondary (year 7-12) teacher. I probably won't want my workplace to know I'm pagan but all my friends do and my family do too.
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« Reply #32: April 28, 2007, 10:53:41 pm »

Erg yuck. In my case, though mum decided that when I got sick of putting up with her emotional abuse. That was before I moved out and thus before I became pagan.

That must have been hard. No matter how annoying my mother gets, I can't imagine moving out. Maybe I could convince her to let me spend a year abroad... Time apart might work pretty well, don't you think?
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« Reply #33: April 30, 2007, 08:13:49 am »

That must have been hard. No matter how annoying my mother gets, I can't imagine moving out. Maybe I could convince her to let me spend a year abroad... Time apart might work pretty well, don't you think?

Time apart does help. Gives everyone a chance to cool off and calm down.
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« Reply #34: April 30, 2007, 09:51:25 pm »

Quote
I'm in the broom closet and am trying to figure out how to tell my parents about Wicca. They are average Christians and slightly conservative, and perfectly 'respectable' people. When I sounded my mother out about Wicca, she muttered something about rock and tree worshipping, crazy, tattooed hippies. I try to have an open mind and don't have anything against tattoos or hippies, but in general, do pagans tend to be what people like my close minded parents consider unrespectable and not fit to associate with, or is that just a stereotype almost as bad as the black-robed, warty which cackling over a cauldron?

I know a lot of other people have said this... but it depends upon what your parents would deem respectable. To most strangers, I would be respectable - I'm an English major/History minor at an internationally rated college, I work in child care at a local church during the year and doing office work during breaks. I don't have any tattoos and have definitely gotten over my "crazy teenager" stage. My hobbies mostly consist of spinning, knitting, cross stitch, reading, writing, and cooking. On the other hand, the people who know me well know that I'm a feminist pagan bisexual who has love affairs punk and ethnic music and works for disability rights. Few people would associate the latter with the former - most people just don't need to know that about me. It's all in what you let people know.

On the other hand, there are plenty of respectable pagans running around out there. My college in particular seems to specialise them (even the monotheists end up with a pagan bend - a Christian once reminded me to make one of our annual sacrifices to Athena) and the name is well respected around the world. I know pagan writers, publishers, stay-at-home moms, general office workers, lawyers, graduate students, and child service workers. We're everywhere, I think we're just usually quiet about it.
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« Reply #35: April 30, 2007, 11:27:31 pm »

My college in particular seems to specialise them (even the monotheists end up with a pagan bend - a Christian once reminded me to make one of our annual sacrifices to Athena)

Hah.  I think I know where you go to school.  Have a friend there, or had; I believe she's on sabbatical, and I don't know if she's going to be returning.
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« Reply #36: May 01, 2007, 09:15:46 am »

Quote
Have a friend there, or had; I believe she's on sabbatical, and I don't know if she's going to be returning.

Yeah, a lot of people do that. And as soon as I mention public sacrifice to Athena, everyone knows where I go to school; it is sort of inevitable. Which reminds me that I need to do that today.
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« Reply #37: May 01, 2007, 09:36:57 am »


Seeking,

Thank you very much for quoting what you're replying to lately!  Smiley  One slight correction, though...  Could you use the "quote" button that's on the post you're replying to (as you're reading it, not on the screen where you're composing your message, in the top right-hand corner, looks like a pair of quotation marks in a box) instead of just putting the [quote][/quote] code in?  The button puts in a link to the post you're replying to and information about who wrote it and stuff, which is also important.  Wink

Thanks!
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« Reply #38: May 03, 2007, 01:50:29 am »

I'm in the broom closet and am trying to figure out how to tell my parents about Wicca. They are average Christians and slightly conservative, and perfectly 'respectable' people. When I sounded my mother out about Wicca, she muttered something about rock and tree worshipping, crazy, tattooed hippies. I try to have an open mind and don't have anything against tattoos or hippies, but in general, do pagans tend to be what people like my close minded parents consider unrespectable and not fit to associate with, or is that just a stereotype almost as bad as the black-robed, warty which cackling over a cauldron?

Is what I'm trying to ask making sense, and do you see what I mean by asking?

There are Pagans of all types out there. If your parents met my husband, they wouldn't have the first clue he's Pagan. He wears a suit to work everyday. He has a military short haircut (a remnant of six years of Army service, he can't stand it to grow out). He drives the most conservative-looking car (on purpose, it's a company car that his work provides). He has walked onto the campus of a local Bible college as part of his work and not been looked at twice as anything odd by the students, faculty, or staff. I also know ones with nose rings, technicolor hair, who wear nothing but tye dye. I'm somewhere in between myself. No nose ring or technicolor hair, but off-duty I tend to wear swirly skirts and loose flowy tops and lots of cool jewelry, but I keep it tasteful in case we run into his colleagues while running around Chicago. I wear necklaces with moon shapes or primitive female figures on them instead of a pentacle, so it's less obvious, but that's mostly because I like those better. We have some cool Paganny artowrk in the house, but it's part of the decor, not the focal point, tucked in with the plaque for my husband's Eagle Scout, my Phi Theta Kappa award, tons of family photos, and a collage that was a wedding gift from my brother. You could introduce your parents to someone Pagan and they would have no clue unless you told them in most cases.
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« Reply #39: May 04, 2007, 08:38:52 am »

As an artist, I am accepted in many circles without a problem because an artist has cultural permission to be 'odd'. It is almost expected of me.

I get this too.  As an art student, people expect me to dress like I'm back in the 80s, have blue hair, multiple piercings and tattoos, and to be a vegetarian and a hippie.

It's funny, but most of the film students here (like yours truly) are the most normal-looking folks you can imagine.  I'm not sure why; maybe because a lot of us are interested in working in the mainstream business? 

In any case, I'm "odd" on the inside--geeky, writerly, literary-minded, movie-and video-game-loving, I wear basically a T-shirt and jeans every day of my life; I have no tattoos or piercings besides my earlobes, and though I am a vegetarian and rather a tree-hugger, I don't advertise it through my looks and actions.  It's the same with my pagan beliefs--very, very few people know about it, and those who do don't care.

In fact, the majority of the students here are either athiest or agnostic, with Buddhism and Christianity being the follow-up religions.  I don't know why that seems strange to me; I guess I've grown up with the idea that "all artists are of the alternative religions," but most of my fellow students would scoff at the idea of multiple gods and actually being able to interact with them.  It's rather a cynical place, actually.  Undecided
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« Reply #40: May 05, 2007, 11:57:13 pm »

I haven't read all of the previous posts, but my mom is somewhat of a local celebrity around here, being the founder of a non-profit organization to help foster children and foster parents, and my father teaches sunday school at the church I was raised in for 10 years.

When I told my mom she was not happy.  She told me that I was simply rebelling and that I would realize one day for the sake of my children that I needed to bring them to church because that was what was "right".  My dad just kind of said, "ok.  I don't know what's really out there, so well... I kind of take the agnostic approach to Christianity" (uh... I don't think there really is one) 

My mom's come around a bit.  I think she realizes that it's not a faze, and it's not something I'm doing to rebel against her.  She moves slowly though so it's a huge thing for her.  But as for being a crazy rock and tree worshipping tatooed hippy... well.... I do really like rocks and trees... and yes, I do hug trees from time to time Smiley 

But I'm a SAHM, wife of a private investigator, we have 4 dogs, no tatoos, we don't do drugs, we hardly ever drink, and our favorite past time is watching DVD's...  I don't usually wear black, or crushed velvet or circlets or whatever.  I think they're fun, but I would never wear them in public...  I did used to play a live action roleplaying game, and I used to make rennaissance and medieval costuming (I'm a seamstress... it was fun!), but now you'll most of the time see me dressed in jeans and a Michigan football t-shirt.  My husband is a huge fan, so I became one Smiley 

I do wear a pentacle necklace all the time, and I am very open about my beliefs.  But I think I'm a respectable person.  I think I'm open-minded, and I only ask that people extend me and my family the same courtesy.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2007, 08:36:47 am by RandallS, Reason: Broke single paragraph into multiple paragraphs » Logged

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« Reply #41: May 06, 2007, 08:39:14 am »

I haven't read all of the previous posts, but my mom is somewhat of a local celebrity around here, being the founder of a non-profit organization to help foster children and foster parents, and my father teaches sunday school at the church I was raised in for 10 years.

I edited your message to break it up into short paragraphs with blank lines between them. A large block of text with no white space is very hard for many to read on a monitor. Please press your return/enter key twice after every few sentences to create white space. Thank you.
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« Reply #42: May 06, 2007, 11:44:15 am »

I'm in the broom closet and am trying to figure out how to tell my parents about Wicca. They are average Christians and slightly conservative, and perfectly 'respectable' people. When I sounded my mother out about Wicca, she muttered something about rock and tree worshipping, crazy, tattooed hippies. I try to have an open mind and don't have anything against tattoos or hippies, but in general, do pagans tend to be what people like my close minded parents consider unrespectable and not fit to associate with, or is that just a stereotype almost as bad as the black-robed, warty which cackling over a cauldron?

Is what I'm trying to ask making sense, and do you see what I mean by asking?

Pagans in my life:

I'm an Accountant. 

My sweetie is a 20 yr Airforce veteran - he was doing things that 'can never be told' and got his group t-shirts once with their group insignia on the back, and "wasn't there, didn't do it, this isn't the t-shirt" on the front.  Because, they don't really exist and never went anywhere officially.  He had a special forces guy ask if he could copy the t-shirt.

We both are renfaire junkies.

My daughter is a licensed massage therapist, my son is studying computer programming.  His daughter is studying to be a vet, his son is a 4.0 in high school.

We have friends who are:  tech support for a large co, nurse, department manager, executive secretary, several in construction, many retired military (go figure), etc.

Your parents are surrounded by pagans and don't even know it!
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« Reply #43: May 07, 2007, 05:51:02 am »

Hmm...let's see....My Dad is a retired Army Colonel, former CO of both 82nd and 101st, who was prior to military a Jesuit priest. (BTW, if ever considering a Catholic school for kids, pick a Jesuit one, they are the only ones who actually teach logic and thinking instead of doctrine) My Mom is a DBA and a devout Catholic. As is Dad, devout Catholic. His family was one of the founders of the Krewe of Bachuss in New Orleans, and we never miss the ball or parade, I had my "coming out" at a Krewe ball. Before the cops stopped going into the French Quarter at Mardi Gras, anyway.

Dad knows I am probably pagan, we have a sort of "don't ask, don't tell" thingy going. Although when my coven accidentally conjured a rather large storm once, he called me, asked point blank if we were doing weather magic, and told us to cast a circle and calm the storm down. A bit disconcerting. I've learned over a lifetime to just not question my Dad's ability to know things he could not possibly know. I think he has people spy on us kids sometimes.

BTW, dad now works at NASA as an aeronautical engineer. Which is where he met my hubby, who is pagan, and also worked for NASA as an electrical engineer. As does our chieftain, High Priest of our clan/coven. So, 2 pagan rocket scientists at NASA. Seriously, have you ever wondered about the names of the missions and such? And the symbolism on the mission patches. I mean, seriously, it screams "Pagan". Of course, most of our original NASA scientists were relocated Nazis, and we all know they had a decidedly pagan view. A bit warped view, granted, but none the less, pagan.

I am a retired paramedic and nurse. No tatooes (not on hubby either) only my ears pierced (only once) and I don't run around all in black. Purple mostly.

My mom loves Ren Faires and decided that what I was doing was a sort of life-long medieval re-enactment. So she treats it as such. Actually bought me beauiful black satin and purple wool hooded witche's cloak 2 Christmases ago. I love it, and my friends are all jealous. She also sends me Ren-style clothes.

My little brother is Buddhist, and has named his boys Zen and Nirvana, and she acccepts it completely, even following their dietary rules.

I guess we are respectable. And eccentric. I just figure, if I respect myself, that is quite enough respectability for me.

Layla
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« Reply #44: May 08, 2007, 01:26:41 pm »

I try to have an open mind and don't have anything against tattoos or hippies, but in general, do pagans tend to be what people like my close minded parents consider unrespectable and not fit to associate with, or is that just a stereotype almost as bad as the black-robed, warty which cackling over a cauldron?

  I am quite new to formally embracing Wicca as a religion. I've been researching other relgions, includin pagan ones for quite some time now. I think I fall into the respectable catagory as a manager of a branch of a fortune 500 banking institution. *grin* Mind you I do have a tatoo, though not in a noticable place. I am a computer geek, love to read, graduated from a private college with Cum Laude status, and I am concerned with the environment and do what I can to help from limiting he animal products I use to bringing my own bags to stores and getting a fuel efficent car. Some of that is hippieish.. some of that is not. I'm just me!

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