Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Titles and Labels

I've been around here for awhile, usually skulking around and reading--never really commenting. I usually don't even log-in to my account, much less type anything on this forum. But, I have come across an interesting issue among several people of pagan faiths. This has probably been discussed before, but I thought I would bring it up on an account that, perhaps, nobody has ever read.

Of titles, specifically the titles one holds in pagan belief systems. So many titles and labels we put on ourselves: Eclectic, Hellenic, Wiccan, Witch, Thelema, etc... Yet, when one chooses to "place" themselves in a category, can they do so? A lot of people I meet seem to be "searching" for their path still, even from years and years of being pagan. Only many of them meet so much opposition when they feel to follow a path, not saying they go around telling everyone, "Hey I'm Wiccan now!", but in a sense that other people they choose to seek knowledge from put them down, because they are wanting to assume a label.

This may sound confusing, as indeed it's a conundrum I've face for awhile. Here's my example, from my life:
I started interested in being Wiccan, because they were the books most available to me at the time. I currently live in a small town filled with college kids (and I am one of them), among them, mostly Christians (Texas). So, I attempted to find a coven to no avail, no surprise here. I, then, became interested in this denomination of "solitary" and "neo" Wicca. Only to meet with certain opposition from, of course, most people on the internet and the pagan group on my school's campus, of which most are highly eclectic or Asatru. So, I decided not to even mention my path anymore, and to work merely under the title of, "a pagan whose interests include that of witchcraft and occult history." Which fit me dandy for awhile, only to--once again--come into conflict with many people over the fact that "being eclectic," somehow hurts them and there is a "problem" with my spiritual path, since I am not under a label, therefore my spirituality doesn't exist and is being practiced incorrectly.

So, my question, what does the forum think of labels and titles? People assuming a title that you, perhaps, have worked hard to obtain and people coming out of the blue and wanting to assume that title with little work and/or effort. Or those who seek a path, but are met with opposition from the people you believed would help you.

This could pose more of a rant on my end, I respect those who differ in my beliefs, but I don't believe I should be put down, for I am human and therefore a learning individual.

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