Personal Responsibility for Pagans

Borrowed from Technocowboy, with revisions (he’s a little harsher in tone than I am). Did we miss anything?

Personal Responsibility for Pagans

1) Everything you put out into the Universe comes back at you, not just the time you spend in ritual and lighting candles. If you’re a professional pessimist, you’re going to have to get used to your life sucking.

2) Patchouli: It’s not a substitute for bathing or deoderant.

3) Learn to read simple things, like prescription bottles and expiration dates, not just pagan books and magazines. When it says two pills a day, ONLY TAKE TWO PILLS A DAY.

4) “Justice” is not throwing every curse you know at someone who cuts you off in traffic.

5) Anything that you do to heal, can also be used to harm. If you can’t do one, you can’t do the other.

6) If you have “mobility challenges,” its polite to get to festival workshops on time. If you can’t, don’t expect the facilitator to wait for you. You’re aware of your limitations. Act accordingly.

7) Paganism is not an effective way to hide your mental illness. See a therapist.

8 ) Everything has a light and dark side; you can not have day without night, sun without shadow. Learn how to deal with both sides, there are lessons to be learned in each of them.

9) If you work with underworld deities, you better have your own stuff cleaned up. They will eat you for lunch until it gets clean.

10) Make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into before accepting the invitation. You still have free Will, even if its a Deity. “Touched by” doesn’t necessarily mean “owned by.”

11) If you make an oath and cannot keep it, be prepared to deal with the consequences; it can be worse than death. Better to not make the oath.

12) A real initiation is a profound, life-altering experience and involves making an oath. If you had an initation ritual and nothing changed, look into what you missed. Relatedly: not all life-altering experiences are an initiation.

13) Those who believe in magic allegedly believe in creating their own change and should, perhaps, not whine so much about the poor quality of handouts and freebies they receive.

14) Being defensive does not equal being offensive, when dealing with those who do not understand.

15) Change doesn’t “magically” happen. To make something change you need to DO THE WORK to manifest that change and while that may include lighting a candle it does not mean you just sit back and wait. The AA definition of insanity is doing the same thign over and over again expecting a different outcome.

16) No one can work magick to make change in your life better than you can.

Comments solicited.

5 thoughts on “Personal Responsibility for Pagans

  1. Jason Pitzl-Waters

    Often, I think these lists (and there are many of them) do more to make “us” feel superior than to actually effect the changes we want to see within our communities.

    That is just my own experience, perhaps others have had better luck.

  2. lisa Post author

    That’s an interesting perspective . . . sort of ‘preaching to the choir’? For me, there were a few items on the list that made me chuckle, and at least one reminder for myself.

    #2 was just plain snarky, I admit it.

  3. Jason Pitzl-Waters

    “. . . sort of ‘preaching to the choir’?”

    That, and the fact that when we read lists like this we often place ourselves in the “us” column rather than the “them” column. When the hypothetical dirty patchouli wearer reads this they will think, “yes, I sure know people who use too much, I on the other hand use just enough”.

  4. John

    Well, I do. :p

    I agree that these lists have a good humor quotient but a low likelihood of speaking truth to anyone. Although, interestingly, this particular list seems to mix funny comments with hard-core introspection. It’s an odd mix, imo.

    Now if you’ll excuse me, my patchouli needs freshening up, I can almost not smell it.

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