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Monday, 30 April 2012

Letting the witch out of the bottle... a load of tosh!

Today I awake and flick on the laptop to once again be greeted by a "journalist" full of steam, bluster and wholly inaccurate facts. Todays buffoon is Christopher Howse, and it's his article "Letting the witch out of the bottle" that has led to the annoyance of myself, and so many others.

Well the few paragraphs arn't even worth responding to as they are just cut and paste quotes taken from other poorly researched articles written by people as bigoted and prejudice as he is.

He goes on...
"So it seems there are now two kinds of witchcraft: the bad kind that black people believe in, and the kind that should be celebrated because it is believed in by Cornish people" 

No, there is one type of witchcraft, that is celebrated and practised as a folk custom by some and as part of a spiritual path -(often Paganism)- by others. Unfortunately some people take the term "Witchcraft" and apply it to horrific atrocities as some sort of self justification. The same way the good name of many religions are dragged through the mud by certain individuals and minority groups that either take some of it's beliefs and twist them beyond recognition, or simply think "that looks like a good label to justify our actions".

"The other problem is that if paganism is taught alongside the religion that children’s parents practise at home, it implies that paganism is a religion just as well-founded as Presbyterianism or Islam." 

I think a Christian arguing that a pre-Christian religion is less well founded is hilarious. In the 2001 census 30,569 people listed their faith as Pagan, a further 7,227 as Wiccan, and a further 1,657 as Druid. Not only are the numbers expected to have increased significantly since then, but the original figures are thought to under estimate the actual numbers of Pagans in the UK. On the 2001 census many Pagans listed their individual pagan path rather than "Pagan" as a representation of their faith group. The Pagan Federation got behind the Pagan Dash campaign to address this issue, so all in all the latest census results are expected to show much higher figures.

Christianity is indeed still shown as the biggest religion in the UK, however although in the 2001 census 72% of the population listed themselves as Christian, British Social Attitude results show that around half of these people do not actually practise the faith, and it is simply what they write on forms.

"But nobody knows what standing stones represent. The astronomical, social, ritual, pacific or bloody uses they might have had are lost in prehistory. They might have been linked with spring flowers or with human sacrifice. No one knows.
What we do know is that there is no continuity between pre-Christian religions in Britain and the various branches of modern paganism."

Erm, again, no. Nobody knows the exact practises surrounding a lot of ancient sites, that is very, very true. But the investment of time and resources studying pre-christian culture in the UK certainly seems to be on the rise... my "to read" pile of books on pre-christian religious practises is certainly on the rise. As these are not un-substantiated books written by "Princess Rainbow Moondove" these are textbooks written by historians.Of course eradicating Paganism from the education of future generations will help to slow that, and might help keep your collection plates topped up, wouldn't it?

All in all the article is just another ill informed rant by a bigot in the guise of an actual journalist.

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