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The Rudiments of Neopagan Spiritual Practice

Meditation, Magic, and Invocation

By Donald H. Frew

It’s hard to know where to start addressing interfaith prayer from a European Indigenous / Neopagan context. As is often the case with Earth Religionists trying to write in an interfaith context, the conversation is filled with a multitude of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim voices. These voices represent an Abrahamic model of what religion is and how it is done… a paradigm into which the Earth Religions usually do not fit. Several aspects of the Neopagan approach to spirituality sometimes seem at “right-angles” to those of the dominant Abrahamic culture in the United States.

The many Neopagan traditions, including Wicca, Druidism, and Heathenism, formed over the course of the last 150 years largely in secret. Fear of oppression by the dominant Christian culture resulted in a self-protective isolation and a deep-seated opposition to all things Christian. Until very recently – say the last 20 years – most Neopagans were converts from other faiths, usually having rejected oppressive forms of Christianity that ruled the households in which their views of “religion” formed. It should come as no surprise that in such an oppositional culture, Christian words like “prayer” and the attendant practices would be avoided. Most Neopagans wouldn’t describe their rituals as “prayer” unless pressed to describe what we do in Christian terms.

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