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Blutwölfin
Sunday, July 9th, 2006, 08:01 PM
The last significant revival of classical paganism in Hellenic lands came in the reign of Julian the Apostate. Now, it seems that there’s another underway. The South African Mail & Guardian reports that thousands of devotees of the Greek gods of antiquity are gathering in Athens to ape the half-remembered rites of millenia past. Unlike the prior revival, this one is not driven by any meaningful numbers of Hellenes, but by foreigners, most of whom hail from the secular West.

There’s a sad irony in this: even as the modern West loses its grip on the faith that created and sustained it, its people still feel the need to turn to something to sustain the basic needs of the soul. Through most of the 20th century, the alternative was politics; in the 21st, if anything, it’s a base paganism of the self. For a few, that means a fitful grasping for the dead predecessors of the Christian world. There’s no defensible basis, even by the elastic demands of faith, for this recourse: even the haze of historical forgetting and the claim of definitive revelation are denied the new adherents. But with the demise of orthodoxy in Western societies, we see popular observers, who in earlier times might know better, conflate the dumb reflexes of infantile superstition with legitimate faith. Note, for example, the clueless Duncan Black and the hapless Digby assert, without apparent embarrassment, the compulsion to respect the public dignity of astrology. This is where secular leftism leads.

In the place of the authentic trappings of authentic faith, the new pagans must mimic the rites of a belief that is often demonstrably fake at best, and horribly consequential at worst. How long, for example, are the new Hellenic pagans going to refrain from re-creating the human sacrifice of Mycanaean times or the Dionysian rites? For all the ennobling mythos of Greek paganism, there’s a reason it was so readily abandoned for an alternative perceived as altogether more sensible, loving, and humane.

The Orthodox hierarchy of Greece is upset about the pagan gathering, as well it might be. “What their worshippers symbolise, and clearly want, is a return to the monstrous dark delusions of the past,” says Father Eustathios Kollas in the story. True enough. But it’s not within the power of Greek Orthodox Christianity to bring sanity to the West. Only the West can do that. Until it does, it will send forth increasing numbers of its own to worship dead gods of antiquity and stone.


Source (http://www.brusselsjournal.com/node/1144)

Leofric
Friday, July 14th, 2006, 06:52 AM
This is funny.

An author who appears to be Christian arguing against contemporary paganism on the grounds that religions cannot be restored after they have been long dead undermines Christianity in the process.

Christ himself was trying to restore the religion that had been practiced by the Israelites during the era between Moses and David, a religion that had been forgotten for many centuries. He viewed the religious leaders of the time as having strayed so far away from the original faith that their practice could no longer be identified as the same thing as his doctrine. But the whole time, he wasn't trying to establish anything new — he showed every indication of intending to restore a faith that had been lost.

If a religion that has been lost for multiple centuries cannot be restored, then Christianity itself is a false religion — a religion of counterfeit rites. But if Chrisitanity is a legitimate religion, and therefore a religion that has been lost for centuries (or rather, that has lain dormant) can be restored, then there's no basis for vituperating paganism on the grounds that it's a new attempt at restoring a long-lost faith.

It looks like this author needs to learn a thing or two about how to get by in glass houses.

Great find, Blutwölfin!

Ælfhere
Saturday, July 15th, 2006, 03:35 PM
An author who appears to be Christian arguing against contemporary paganism on the grounds that religions cannot be restored after they have been long dead undermines Christianity in the process.

Most religions have claimed they are bringing back some long lost wisdom. Judaism was invented by the Israelite king Josiah who "found" some lost scroll of the Torah. Muhammed said he was bringing back the pure faith of Abraham which was long since corrupted.


How long, for example, are the new Hellenic pagans going to refrain from re-creating the human sacrifice of Mycanaean times or the Dionysian rites?

Another question could be asked: How long is the Christian Church going to refrain from re-creating the stake-burnings of Medieval Catholicism or the witch-hunts of the early Protestants?

Its odd how the Abrahamics always bring up the sacrifices of ancient heathendom when they were sacrificing "heretics" to Yahweh as recent as 400 years ago.

Caisaros
Monday, December 4th, 2006, 05:57 PM
An author who appears to be Christian arguing against contemporary paganism on the grounds that religions cannot be restored after they have been long dead undermines Christianity in the process.

And what sort of authority does a Christian think he haves to determine what can or not be restored?

Christians were always deadly and stuborn enemies of all the other religions, specially the Pagan ones. Far before the historical interruption of Pagandom, they were already arguing that the Pagan religions had no value at all. That new «argument» of «absence of continuity» is thus nothing more than a feeble and revoltingly dishonest (revolting because the Christians killed Paganism wherever they could) pretext to attack Pagandom.

Meanwhile, some Christian clerics seem too worried with such a few number of Pagans in the Western World... could they be somehow afraid of something?