I want to get this post out there because I've been reading some disturbing things on the internet, mostly in the Pagan community at large, but also in the Hellenistic community. It's rough out there right now. I have written before that I sometimes have a problem with the Hellenistic community, mostly because of its--generalized--disrespect and dismissiveness of the Neo-Pagan community (something Elaion seems to be mercifully without, I might add). As a member of said community--or a former member, if you adhere to the trend that Hellenismos is not part of the Pagan banner--I fully acknowledge anyone's experiences with the divine in its various forms. It doesn't matter to me if you're Recon, polytheistic, monotheistic, atheistic, humanistic or anything in between or outside of it. If you consider yourself Pagan, I'll be happy to stand with you under the umbrella.

Experiences of the divine vary. It has always been that way, and it will always be that way. Especially in our current--individualistic--society, everyone is encouraged to walk their own path. Part of that walk means figuring out what the Gods mean to you. To take the obvious example that led to the creation of this post: Pan. For us Hellenists, Pan is a panikos-inducing shepherd Theos; that's how He was worshipped in ancient Hellas. Now, within the (Neo-)Wiccan pantheon, Pan is the quintessential Horned God; a fertility God of the woodlands. I disagree with that in my practice, but that doesn't mean I will take your head off for worshipping Pan as such. The same goes for Hekate, who in ancient Hellas, was a protective virgin Theoi and not a necromantic crone--and definitely not part of a trinity. Feel free to worship Her as a crone, though, or Queen of Witches. The only thing that will annoy me is when you call me out for 'being wrong' in my worship of Her.

You see, if I respect you enough to encourage you to believe (or not believe, if that's your poison) whatever the heck you want, I would at least like the courtesy to be allowed to believe as I desire as well. As a hard-polytheist, my take on this huge difference is that the Pan or Hekate of (Neo-)Wicca is a different Theoi--or at least a different evolution/epithet of said Theoi--than the ancient Hellenes (in this case) worshipped. And that's fine. It's also fine if you think that's BS.

The message I'm trying to get to here, is that I might not agree with your UPG, but I feel you are very much entitled to it. Ancient Hellenes adopted and rewrote any God or Goddess they came upon to fit their pantheon, and that worked for them. I might be a Recon, but I'm also aware that times change. I have absolutely no patent on The Truth.

So there, my solemn oath that I'm not jumping on the hate bandwagon. I don't really understand it, I don't condone it, and if I ever see it in the comments to this blog, I'll speak up about it. I believe in temperance, respect, and everyones right to believe what they want to believe. The kind of hate in that link about Pan? It's not constructive, it makes us look like jerks, and it makes an enemy out of the few allies we have as a Tradition. With that attitude, we're going to make things really difficult for ourselves, and it will scare off seekers. No one wants to feel they need to adopt hate in order to 'fit in'. Again, everyone has the right to belief, do, and say what they want, and this includes spreading hate. Just not here, not in my space, and I will not join in. Don't expect me to, and never try to force me into it.