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Information icon.svg This debate was created by MarcusCicero.

How come the various New Age mumbo jumbo pagan sects proliferate on the internet? I mean, we all consider the essential Bible Story to be an interesting Fairy Tale that may or may not hold some universal truth's. So why are we so tolerant of ancient religions that have since died? Why is Paganism so widely tolerated on this website? Why aren't they subjected to the same ridicule and mockery as Christians? MarcusCicero (talk) 16:56, 27 March 2011 (UTC)

We only mock ignorant fundies. If you can find an ignorant fundy neopagan, I expect we will happily mock them. Blue (pester) 18:33, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
I agree that some NeoPagan beliefs are not treated with the appropriate amount of snark, but I can't recall the last time a pagan was pushing for their religion to be allowed an influence in public life to dictate what non-practitioners of their religion can and can not do. Consequently, my feelings on the issue aren't all that strong. --Danfly (talk) 19:20, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
But you aren't attacking the fundamental tenets of their faith. Various articles on Christianity are full of ridicule and derision; surely this is hypocritical if you are giving pagans a free pass? Or is it because there are so many pagans on this website? Whether Christians are influencing public policy is one thing; surely this is unrelated to comments actively mocking and deriding Jesus Christ. Why not mock Thor? Or any other of these things these people believe in? MarcusCicero (talk) 20:32, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
Let me sum up my position on this, since I don't think it was clear. If the question is 'Why is Paganism so widely tolerated on this website'?, then my answer is this: it is more than likely because there are so many pagans and relatively uninitiated people like me fear the influential wrath of TEH PAGAN CABAL. If the question is SHOULD we mock irrational pagan beliefs, my answer is yes, and neither should we absolve the pagan community of guilt for promoting a significant amount of genuinely dangerous new age woo, particularly where alternative medicine is concerned. Oh, and I take back what I said earlier about public policy. I just remembered 'Honouring the Ancient Dead', who are a real thorn in the side of archaeological research. --Danfly (talk) 20:51, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
Well, personally, I find that mockery does not promote understanding; It only engenders resentment, making it useless for the purposes of education.
That said, I do perceive a certain imbalance between the hostility towards Abrahamic religions and others, but I think that a large part of that is a lack of familiarity.
Neopaganism is not nearly as prevalent as Abrahamic religions. Also, while Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all have a single, central text that virtually every sect holds in common, neopagan beliefs are spread out between countless books and some aspects are even only known on a local level, making it much more difficult to fully educate oneself on the beliefs of a group.
In relation to this, neopaganism is a much more diverse group than the Abrahamic religions, as it encompasses the theology of numerous belief systems from across Europe, so that one particular "brand" of neopaganism may be entirely different from another.
That and several other factors mean that accurately criticizing neopagan beliefs is far more time-consuming than attacking the much larger, more centralized targets. - Gameboy (talk) 21:06, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
EC. I suspect there are two issues:
Firstly, we do not know as much about paganism as we do about other religions.
Secondly, many of our more religious correspondents seem to have created their own "personal religions" which allow them to answer criticisms of Christianity (or whatever) with - "Ah, my personal view of Christianity doesn't include that." My impression is that this is even more the case with pagan religions where mixing and matching is used to create a religion which can best be described as "What I want to believe today is ...".
As it's pretty difficult to get a handle on a religion which is not only held held by only one person but also may change on a daily basis it's a bit hard to really get critical.--BobSpring is sprung! 21:19, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
Have to agree with the above statement. Trying to define NeoPaganism is probably more difficult than giving a single definition the vaguest possible definition of Hinduism, which would include Buddhism and Jainism. --Danfly (talk) 22:21, 27 March 2011 (UTC)