Baldr Frostflame

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    Baldr Frostflame

    Egalitarianism is a value that Pagan Renewal Seattle practices, yes, and any group that would like to affiliate and collaborate with us would also have to be egalitarian.

    The spiritual journey, pilgrimage, and quest is individual, and it is also communal, so we hope that we would grow not only as individuals but also as groups and traditions. The vision is that local groups would each encompass a variety of different traditions and paths, yes, and we don’t set up a litmus test that requires anyone to maintain a particular theological or metaphysical outlook. We hold together by gathering around our flexible and adaptable core rather than by drawing boundary lines in the sand that say who is “inside” and who is “outside”.

    All that said, we have to keep in mind that this is all just a vision for now, and it will be an experiment—we will have to see how the Pagan Renewal evolves.


    Baldr Frostflame

    Olivia, merry meet! We’re glad you’re finding the Pagan Renewal resonates with you.

    I launched a separate topic to respond to your questions about groups and organization, so please visit my post over there for a response.

    Please feel welcome to post any other questions that come to mind.

    Many blessings to you. —BF


    Baldr Frostflame

    Olivia J Moffitt recently posed the following excellent questions:

    If I feel inspired by this group, would it be possible to start one from whatever locale I end up being in at the time?

    Also, how do group structures work if there is no hierarchy etc.?

    On the first question, yes, our vision for the future includes an affiliated network of groups supporting each other. Location-based groups (of the kind that Olivia asked about) we generally refer to as “Branches”. We also envision multiple distinct traditions and interest- or affinity-based groups that may include members of different Branches, as well as individuals who have no local Branch near them. So on the whole, we envision two kinds of groups within the Pagan Renewal: one kind (Branches) based on location and one kind (traditions and interest groups) based on affinity.

    If you have an existing local group that can affirm our conviction, vision, and mission and generally draw inspiration from our Fifteen Theses and Five Elements (which are intended to allow room for differences of opinion), you are welcome to declare your affiliation as a “Scion” of the Pagan Renewal, which is just a special kind of Branch that has chosen to “graft” itself into the Pagan Renewal. If you are an individual or individuals without an existing local group interested in exploring starting one, you can become a “Node”, which just means that you are looking into organizing a Branch. A Node becomes a Branch after continuing in healthy growth for at least a year and a day.

    Pagan Renewal Seattle is the Pagan Renewal’s Radix (Latin for “root”, referring to the original local group of the Pagan Renewal). You can read more about us by following the link above. If you have an interest in starting a Branch, we would love to connect with you so that you and we can support each other and learn from each other’s experiences.

    The overall structure of the Pagan Renewal is currently informal, with each Branch and affinity-based group entirely self-governing. In the future, we may apply for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status in the United States, which would require us to adopt formal structures to comply with legal requirements, but the overall spirit of our organization will continue to be based on voluntary affiliation, cooperation, and mutual support.

    On the second question, we are spiritually egalitarian, which means that we do not require individuals to undergo initiations or “priesthood” elevations. We are also operationally egalitarian and without hierarchy in the sense that no one tells anyone else what to do. That said, we view compromise and cooperation as essential and organizational design and leadership as useful tools in making the Pagan Renewal effective in accomplishing its mission and manifesting its vision.

    I hope the above responses are helpful! Please feel free to post any follow-up questions in this topic.

    —Warmly yours, BF


    Baldr Frostflame

    Scott, good questions again!

    Reform Pagans need not subscribe to a particular conception of “flourishing”, but I think that liberty, oneness, and attainment of good fortune are each compatible with our goals.

    Is this page helpful in answering your question about what being “Pagan” means?

    Your questions, as well as some others I’ve gotten recently from another source, inspired me to add two pages to

    Ultimately, one need not identify with Reform Paganism or the Pagan Renewal to attain any good thing, but these frameworks serve as common ground for those of us who want to pursue our goals together.

    I hope this all help!

    Blessings —BF


    Baldr Frostflame

    Scott, I could offer a number of answers to your question, but let me start with just one for now.

    I would begin by saying that I want Reform Paganism to provide a framework and community for spiritual growth and human flourishing.

    Why? How? Well, I find Reform Paganism a natural and free expression of my inborn spirituality as an individual human person. And I view my individual spirituality within a broader context, which makes the larger conviction, vision, and mission of the Pagan Renewal essential in my opinion: I believe that my own highest spiritual and human fulfillment goes hand in hand with that of the broader human family, as we are all interconnected in Nature.

    I have therefore come to think of the Pagan Renewal as like a coin with two sides: Pagan Reformation and Pagan Restoration. On the one hand, I want an ongoing process of reasoned and organic reform in Paganism to lay the foundation for restoring this once and future faith to a place of positive and transformational influence in today’s world; on the other hand, I want this vision of Paganism restored to lend us Reform Pagans a sense of mission and purpose.


    Baldr Frostflame

    Hi, Scott—

    From how you describe your concept of “poietic” faith, I think it would be compatible with Reform Paganism and the Pagan Renewal. Chaos Magic has a “meta-belief” concept to the effect that belief can serve a tool for achieving desired effects, and I think this concept sounds similar to what you are describing. Reform Paganism doesn’t prescribe a certain set of beliefs because we are more committed to the individual and collective spiritual journey, pilgrimage, and quest, recognizing that while our beliefs may change over time, those changing beliefs each figure in the broader journey, pilgrimage, and quest.

    Reform Paganism therefore creates a space in which persons are free—even encouraged—to grow in spirit over time without the fear that a certain change in beliefs will put them “outside” our community. So blazing your own trail is normative, rather than transgressive.

    Is that helpful? Thanks for asking. —BF

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Restoring Human Nature