‘Why on earth is a heathen blogger writing a post about ‘Christian pagans”, I hear you cry…
Before I begin, I will warn you that what you’re about to read may be quite controversial (or at least it has been a taboo subject if my many debates on social media regarding this subject are anything to go by). I don’t expect you to agree with me, but I do ask that you read this post right through until the end before commenting, and that you respect my right to have my own opinion.
I first came across the term ‘Christian pagan’ in a book about Wicca, which my curious 10 year old self purchased from a secondhand book shop many years ago. From what I remember, the book stated that many Wiccans also combine elements of Christianity into their personal faith.
If you are one of those people, then fair play. You have a right to practise your faith however you want. But to me, this is nonsensical and borderline ridiculous.
How can you intertwine European paganism with Christianity – a religion which originated from the deserts of the Middle East? In my mind, this is hypocritical and, quite frankly, an insult to those who walked before you.
I shall use myself as an example: I grew up in a predominantly Christian family, although my mother has always maintained a strong connection to paganism, and refused to let my father baptise me. It was her belief (and rightly so) that I should be allowed to choose my own faith, when I was old enough to do so.
I was born and raised in England, but from as far back as I can remember, I have never felt truly at home in this country (nor in this century!). While other little girls were begging their parents to buy them Barbie dolls and princess dresses in the toy shop, I was running straight past them to the viking/knight figurines.
While other children were building sandcastles on the beach, I was standing barefoot in the surf, dreaming of distant shores.
When I was a teenager, and all my friends were planning holidays to New York or sun-drenched Caribbean islands, I was dreaming of the chillier climate, windswept heathlands and dense pine forests of Scandinavia. I longed for nature, and the simplicity of years gone by.
Until I was around 20 years old, I never really understood why. It was then that I researched my family history, and discovered that I have strong roots on the European mainland – in particular, the Germanic/Scandinavian countries. Even in my English family history, most of my ancestors lived in what was then known as Northumbria – an area of the country which was, for a long time, ruled under the Dane Law.
Even now, despite never visiting the nations of my ancestors, I feel a strong connection to their homelands. I also feel an overwhelming pull towards their native gods, which is impossible to ignore.
Because of this, I simply cannot understand why so many people in the western world consider themselves Christian. Yes, the religion has been ingrained into our cultures for generations, but it is most certainly NOT indigenous!
One might argue that Christianity is similar to paganism, because many so called ‘Christian’ traditions originated from those of paganism. Whilst this is indeed true, for me it is like buying a pair of fake Louboutin shoes: you can kid yourself that they are the same as the real thing, and you may even be able to convince other people, but in your heart you will always know that they are nothing but a cheap imitation.
Another reason why I personally cannot condone the combination of a pagan faith with an Abrahamic one, is because it is a great insult to our pagan ancestors. If you have European roots, the chances are that many of your ancestors were pagan at one time – they must be turning in their graves to think that their descendants are worshipping the god of their enemies! They must also see it as a great insult for a descendant of theirs to be combining paganism with Christianity.
I’m sorry if I’m offending anyone with this post, but I feel that it needs to be said. Being a ‘Christian pagan’ is tantamount to being a European-born person who practises the religion of an African tribe; you can believe in it, and you can practise it, but you can never truly be a part of their faith.
Unless you have a blood or ancestral connection to the land of your faith, or you have lived there long enough to immerse yourself in the local culture, you cannot ever really claim to believe in their religion.
Before I receive the standard death threats/messages accusing me of being a racist, please read more of my blog posts. I am NOT racist! I have the utmost respect for all human beings, as long as they respect me in return. I also believe that anyone should be allowed to practise whichever religion they choose, but I still stand by my previous point – namely, that they can never truly be a part of that faith unless they have a connection!
People say that the vikings were savages, and that they left a trail of death and destruction in their wake as they raided and pillaged their way around the known world; but they fail to see that the Christians were just as bad, if not worse.
Vikings colonised and visited many different countries, and for the most part they were very tolerant of different cultures and religions… Christians invaded our shores, and gave the pagans two choices: conversion or death.
The thing which baffles me the most is that, a thousand years later, the western world is still very much a slave to the primitive desert death cult which raped our indigenous cultures and beliefs so long ago. Christianity has become synonymous with European culture, and that truly saddens me.
Also, Christianity is monotheistic (meaning that they worship only one deity), whereas paganism is polytheistic (meaning that we worship multiple deities); of course, many will say that it’s acceptable to simply add the Christian god to your list of pagan gods, but for me this is hypocritical and just plain wrong.
Perhaps ‘Christian pagans’ are just confused, as they were raised to be Christians but later realised that Abrahamism wasn’t for them. Maybe they lack the confidence to completely reject the faith they were indoctrinated into from birth, so they prefer to stay in between, just in case they are wrong. Or maybe it is to appease their intolerant families.
Whatever the reason, I completely disagree with it. I explored and studied many different theologies – including Abrahamic religions – before deciding on Ásatrú. But once I’d decided, I devoted my life, heart and soul to it. For me, there is no in between.
Combining different traditions and beliefs is natural progression for humankind, yet to me it seems very unnatural.
One thing is for sure – ‘Christian pagans’ don’t stand a single chance at getting into Valhalla, no matter how brave or valiant they are!