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MAIN Arrow to Society Society Arrow to Religion Religion Arrow to Paganism Paganism & Neo-Paganism

Fields have eyes and woods have ears. John Heywood, Nature Quotes

Common misconceptions about Paganism are often traced back to the early rise of European Christianity, when missionaries began to make major inroads into communities that formerly held fast to "the old ways."

These beliefs sprang from devotion to Norse gods & goddesses in Iceland, Denmark and Norway, along with centuries-old Celtic, Heathen, and Druid rituals, or a blend of similar belief systems arising out of the natural world or seasonal cycles.

One its paganism's central tents - that man was not born in need of salvation or original sin - would prove to chaff most roughly against the rise of Christianity. As the church became firmly entrenched throughout Europe, however those who still practice the old ways were eventually branded pagans as a catchall phrase meaning "backward," or "country bumpkin."

In particular, witchcraft was soon perceived as tantamount to Satanism and, by association, all Pagan religions came under suspicion. This, despite evidence that all Pagan beliefs (including witchcraft) were antithetical to devil worship.)

Today, Paganism and Neo-Paganism is still looked upon as odd, mysterious or "out there", but a growing interest is reflected in the number of Web sites and online Pagan communities - which now have come to outnumber even those dedicated to major organized religions.

On the Web, learn more about general beliefs held by those outside the religious mainstream, along with historical background, and facts & information on the moral and ethical tenets followed by Pagans & Neo-Pagans in the modern world ...


also see -> Summer Solstice | Winter Solstice

also see in Holidays -> Halloween History

 

More about Paganism around the Web:

The Celtic Connection - Witchcraft & Wicca Information Index - The oldest pagan resource on the Net with a virtual library of informational essays on pagan teachings, beliefs & history, seasonal holidays, related glossary, FAQ, recommended reading.

The Cauldron - A Pagan Forum - Major community site with an excellent intro to the topic at the Pagan Primer, plus chat & active discussions, news & updates, information on divination, healing herbs, metaphysics, occult and wicca, with suggested reading, online shop.

BBC Religion: Paganism - Good general overview of pagan beliefs, festivals, customs & traditions, plus more information on Heathenry and Wicca, pagan history.

 

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