I will have to change the heading if I can, not sure how to do that, though. Guys and Gals are most welcome. I guess Pagan means different things to different people. Simplistic meaning to me would be nature lover, respectful of all life, including trees, rocks, water, the Moon, etc. The old true Native American religion was pagan. I know many were converted to Christianity in not so nice ways. but there are still many true believers out there. I am Welsh, German and Cuban, so come by my pagan-ness naturally, lol.
Wales and Germany actually had very strong Pagan traditions prior to conversion. Those traditions have persisted... preserved within local folklore, as elements incorporated into Christian practice, and re-established in a traditional form with the revival of Pagan practice.
That's right! I forgot about Santería being in Cuba. There are many Christians who incorporate Pagan traditions into their faith. My mother's family is First Nations... they go to Catholic Mass (and consider themselves devout Christians thanks to conversion by Europeans in the 1800s), but also perform traditional Native ceremonies. Both practices have blended seamlessly in their faith. My father's family is Irish and also very Catholic, but fairy lore and traditions surrounding it still run strong in belief and practice in their household. Some of the recognized saints can be linked to pre-Christian figures, and many Christian feast days can be linked to Pagan holidays.
I find the cultural variation in religion quite fascinating. I think that all beliefs should be viewed with an open mind and a respect for the beliefs of others... after all, faith is a very personal thing (much like the choice of favourite breed of horse ;)). Our differences are what make the world rich and interesting.
Religion of any sort leads to conflict only when combined with intolerance.
Excellent comments, Ferrous! We should all be tolerant of everyone's belief system, or non belief, for that matter. The world would be much more at peace. But we can work on that, can't we, one person at a time!
Hey Marti...I don't label myself or anyone else... I just know horses bring a spiritual side to me that I love as well as all my other animals... I guess I revere God, whatever that is when I am close to them... I am a nature lover and preserver...... :) Jen