Distrust compassion; prefer dignity for yourself and others. Don't be afraid to be thought arrogant or selfish.
-Christopher Hitchens
Lord Galen
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Between Two Worlds



Dear Galen


HELP! My parents found out that I'm studying magick and occult stuff. They're both really BIG TIME right-wing Christian Fundamentalists. They're both so closed minded and arrogant. They make it hard to see any good in Christians at all! Like, I still believe in God and Jesus and most of the Bible and all, but I just feel like I need more than that. You know, like maybe that's not all there is to life and religion and stuff.

So anyway, they fucking freaked out when they found my notebook. It has drawings of like pentagrams and shit. My dad went through my whole room and found books on Wicca and magick. It's not like I'm worshipping Satan or anything. I just drew the Pentagrams cuz I thought they looked cool and plus somebody told me that Satanists just stole the Pentagram anyway and that it's not really evil.

Do you have any advice for me? I hope so :(

-Between Two Worlds



Dear Between

Ok, I understand your frustration, but the first thing you should do is look at this from your parents' position. Their faith and belief in God means everything to them. From the sound of it, religion is their whole life. Now, they've just discovered that their child is trying to follow a path that is, in their minds, completely anathema to everything they believe. By rejecting their faith, they also see it as a rejection of themselves and everything they hold dear. Once you can understand that, you'll be in a better position to sort this mess out.

However, understanding or not, they are your parents not your masters. It is not for them to dictate what lies in your heart (indeed, even God himself has stated that it is not even his place to do that). You must follow your own path. If they have a problem with your faith (whatever it may be) then that is THEIR problem. You should ignore it completely and cast their negative feelings aside as merely a show of their own insecurity and closed-mindedness.

I note that you say you still believe in the Christian values of monotheism (a belief in one omnipotent God) and Christ. That being the case, you may find it difficult to assimilate into Pagan ways. Most pagan faiths hold the belief that there is more than one god. Depending on the faith, there can be as little as 2 or 3 gods, or there can be hundreds.

If your interest is simply in spirituality, learning, and magic (note, spelled without a "k" cuz I think that's fuckin' retarded), then there are avenues open to you. Chaos Magic, for example, has nothing to do with religion whatsoever. Anyone of any faith can practice it. Our own board Admin, Apoplexy Chaosmagick would know more about that than I, however.

Personally, I follow the Druid path. Contrary to popular misconception (among both the mainstream and the pagan community), Druidry is NOT a religion. It is a way of life and a state of being. Though many Druids are also pagans, it is not required since Druidism is not about worshipping gods. There are Pagan Druids, Christian Druids (like me), and even Agnostic or Atheist Druids.

There are other magical/spiritual paths to follow as well. I suggest doing your own research. Start looking and don't stop until you've found the path that calls you.

A note on the Pentagram, since you brought it up. The Pentagram is used in magic (mostly Wicca) and, as you say, it was stolen by the Satanists and turned to their own meanings.

The simple Pentagram (pictured below) is a five pointed star with the four lower points representing the four material Elements - Fire, Air, Water, and Earth. The fifth (top) point represents the Element of Spirit. The placement is significant because a correctly drawn pentagram with the single point facing up is representative of Spirit being above the physical elements.


The Satanists took the Pentagram and distorted it. The inverted (upside-down) Pentagram is representative of the Spirit being beneath the physical elements (which is what Satanists believe). This is pictured below along with the more commonly recognized Satanic symbol, the Sigil of Baphomet. Although this is a different version of Baphomet than the one used by (and copyrighted to) the Church of Satan (founded by Anton LeVay). The only difference though, is that the CoS Sigil has different letters at the five points.


Anyway, now that the lesson is over....

Each person's faith is their own and it is personal. No one (not even God himself - by his own admission) can tell you what path to follow. If God doesn't have that power, then your parents most certainly do not! Shakespeare said "To thine own self be true." That is the best advice anyone can ever give you. Be true to yourself and what YOU feel and believe, regardless of what anyone else tells you.


Hate,
Galen