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Gus diZerega - PaganSquare - Join the conversation! - PaganSquare

All Our Relations: Pagans and the more-than-human world.

For aware Pagans the Sacred encompasses us all, rivers and mountains, oceans and deserts, grasses and trees, fish and fungi, birds and animals. Understanding the implications of what this means and how to experience it first hand involves our growing individually and as a community well beyond the limits of this world-pathic civilization. All Our Relations exists to help fertilize this transition.

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Gus diZerega

Gus diZerega

Gus diZerega is a Third Degree Elder in Gardnerian Wicca. He studied closely with Timothy White who later founded Shaman’s Drum magazine, and also studied Brazilian Umbanda  for six years under Antonio Costa e Silva.Dr. diZerega has published widely on the social sciences in the academic press as well as on spirituality.  His second book Pagans and Christians: The Personal Spiritual Experience won the Best Nonfiction of 2001 award from  The Coalition of Visionary Resources.  His third, coauthored with Philip Johnson, is Beyond the Burning Times: A Pagan and a Christian in Dialogue. His art frequently appeared in Shaman’s Drum, and the ecological journals Wild Earth, and The Trumpeter.DiZerega combines a formal academic training in Political Science with decades of work in Wicca and shamanic healing.His newest book, Faultlines: The Culture War and the Return of the Divine Feminine, received a 'silver' award by the Association of Independent Publishers for 2014. 

 

One of the first things the new Republican majority has done in Congress is to escalate the battle against legal abortion.  Republicans have long been seeking the world’s most restrictive law on abortion. Today, in the midst of what most people would regard as far more pressing issues, Republican leadership is seeking to further restrict women’s access in ways that ultimately alienated even many Republican women members of Congress  The reasons for their fanaticism go deeper than the reasons anti-women’s rights groups give for opposing abortion.  They go to the root of who they are.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Thank you for doing the best you can. But your reply indicates you did not understand the column. The opening statement of mine
  • Wayne
    Wayne says #
    "This new world began arising in Western Europe and the US, beginning in the 1700s I'm not sure exactly what you're suggesting he
  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Wayne- This is my last response to you unless you demonstrate the capacity to engage in reasoned discussion. I have carefully lai
  • Wayne
    Wayne says #
    Alright, I'll go through in detail this afternoon and see exactly how you have "addressed" my arguments already.
  • Wayne
    Wayne says #
    The earliest a child has ever been born and survived is 20 weeks, so clearly the child is viable at that stage, and only logically

A version of this appeared a day ago in Patheos. I think the points I am making are important enough to put this both places.

     Violence in the name of a monotheistic religion has again captured the world’s attention. This time it was committed  in Islam’s name.  In response many columnists and politicians who should know better claim something supposedly unique to Islam is responsible.  This malign misdiagnosis gets two central points utterly wrong.
     First, there are over one billion Muslims in the world, and the great majority are not violent.  Second, while there has been considerable violence by some Muslims in the name of their religion, the majority of their victims have been other Muslims. In this respect Islam is not unusual.  Historically a great many victims of monotheistic violence have been those most other people would regard as practicing the same religion.
For mostly historical reasons, most religious violence today is by those claiming to be Muslims.  But Islam has no monopoly here.  Christianity has spilled plenty of blood in its past. The end of its worst violence did not come as a result of any advances in Christian morality or spiritual understanding. Relative peace arose from mutual exhaustion, when the various factions realized they could never kill all the other side.
     True religious tolerance considered as a matter of principle had to wait the coming of the Enlightenment, the rise of deism, and the triumph of the American Revolution. Deism is not monotheism, which is why so many Christian leaders of that time called them atheists.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    You're welcome!
  • Ted Czukor
    Ted Czukor says #
    Gus - Thank you for this incredibly comprehensive study of the different Gods of Christianity! I agree that Mysticism is the best

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Thoughts about Solstice for 2014

Celebrating the turnings of the Wheel of the Year encourage us to meditate on the cycles of life. This year celebrating the Winter Solstice has proven is harder for me to enter  wholeheartedly than often in the past. At the Solstice we celebrate light’s return, and with it the rebirth of life from the mystery of death. This year perhaps it is fitting that it falls on the dark of the moon.  Yule honors the return of light while I am living in a society where the lights seem to be going out.

Ultimately my post will be positive, very much so.  But let us not pretend it is easy to see any growing light beyond that of the sun itself. 

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Gus -- wow, I had no idea you were an artist! Let's talk about this some more via email.
  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    I am the artist.
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Although the list of woes (especially the political material, some of which I respectfully see differently than you) at the beginn
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Gus -- I absolutely love the image at the top of your post. Who's the artist?

Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Usually I post my own stuff here, but an old friend, and very long time Pagan who wishes to be known to the outside as Priestess Aurora Borealis Medicine Turkey, has written a wonderful poem celebrating Mid-Winter Eve and I want to share it...

The Eve of Midwinter

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Aurora Borealis is truly a genius in her work.
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. diZerega, Hilarious poem! My thanks for sharing it.
  • Sophie Goldstein
    Sophie Goldstein says #
    Couldn't have said it better myself! Sophia Goldenstone Langwitch Ilkley Moor, W. Yorkshire

This and my previous essay explain how we can better understand the dangers and benefits of power by combining both secular and esoteric traditions. Part one explored power’s nature, and why power is both necessary and often destructively addictive. It also laid the foundation for an esoteric understanding of power by developing a model of thought forms.  I made the case for their reality once views shared widely within the Pagan community are taken seriously.  This present essay explores Power as a thought form deeply destructive to human well-being – and what we can do about it. 

power and Power

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I have rewritten parts of the original essay here to clarify and better focus its argument.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    So am I. But you are off topic about 100%. The post has nothing to do with Obama. Reread it if you think otherwise. But in ter
  • Greybeard
    Greybeard says #
    Most Americans are quite unhappy with what Obama and Democrats have done with Power over the past few years. That much was obviou

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Cycle of Death into Life

 

Scientists motivated by a deep love and fascination for the natural world share with most Pagans a recognition of the world’s intrinsic value, but without our metaphysics. However they bring skills of observation and analysis many of us lack to deepen in their own way their love and fascination. This was a happy insight I had while researching the role of Pagan religion in the modern world.  Biologists are important teachers who can help us deepen our own understanding.

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  • Gus diZerega
    Gus diZerega says #
    Thank you both. If you read it I hope you like my book, Jamie. Carol, I think Pagans are unique in that we can honestly argue th
  • Carol P. Christ
    Carol P. Christ says #
    Love this post. I agree with you that there is no reason for "religion" and "science" to be at odds, at least not if each is aware
  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Mr. DiZerega, Great post! The book sounds fascinating. Death and life are so intertwined...

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