Paganistan: Notes from the Secret Commonwealth

In Which One Midwest Man-in-Black Confers, Converses & Otherwise Hob-Nobs with his Fellow Hob-Men (& -Women) Concerning the Sundry Ways of the Famed but Ill-Starred Tribe of Witches.

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Hatchet Job

 Best Hatchets For Camping And Survival in 2022


The disunity of the monotheisms is proof of polytheism.”

Bruner Soderberg


It's a Golden Age of polytheist theology, and I'm very much looking forward to reading Gus diZerega's God Is Dead, Long Live the Gods: A Case for Polytheism. If what I've seen of his work in the past is anything to go by, I'm expecting a crisply-expressed, thought-provoking argument.

But first I've got a question: In order to make a credible intellectual case for polytheism, do we really need to start with a deconstruction of monotheism? In order to prove polytheism coherent, must one first prove monotheism incoherent?

Here's the Table of Contents:

Introduction 1

Polytheistic “Monotheism” 9

How “Monotheism” Dissolved into Polytheism 31

The Incoherence of Monotheism 51

Science, Monotheism, and the Death of the World 75

Polytheistic Experiences 99

Science and the Spirit 123

The Living World: From the Many, One 147

The Living World: Mind and Culture 167

The Case for Polytheism 189

Bibliography 211

If my math is accurate (never a good assumption), to judge from what we see here, nearly half of the book—half!—is devoted to discussing monotheism, and—as I gather from the “See inside” extracts—Abrahamic monotheism in particular. (There are, of course, other kinds.)

OK, well. The sons (I use the term advisedly) of Abraham have been a major force in Western religion for the last 1500+ years or so, and most modern pagans (in the West, anyway) have grown up in an intellectual environment shaped by, in particular, the Christianities.

Still, it would seem to me that if polytheist modalities of thought have any validity, they should surely be able to stand on their own two (or however many) hooves. On current evidence (such as it is), polytheist worldviews would seem to have got along just fine on their own recognizance for oh, say about fifty thousand years or so. Historically speaking—for all their latter-day success—the Abraham religions are an aberration, a blip. Given this fact, do we really need to set about proving polytheism by first disproving monotheism? Why must monotheism be our point of departure? Aren't we tired of talking about monotheism yet? I, for one, sure am tired of hearing about it.

Well, I can't review a book that I haven't read. We'll see what Gus has to say on the matter; realistically, we can expect something incisive. Compunctions notwithstanding, I'm still looking forward to reading the book; the second half, anyway.

For now, I will acknowledge that burying the hatchet may be premature. Myself, I plan to hang onto mine, and await further evidence.

To be continued.


Gus diZerega (2020) God Is Dead, Long Live the Gods: A Case for Polytheism. Llewellyn


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Poet, scholar and storyteller Steven Posch was raised in the hardwood forests of western Pennsylvania by white-tailed deer. (That's the story, anyway.) He emigrated to Paganistan in 1979 and by sheer dint of personality has become one of Lake Country's foremost men-in-black. He is current keeper of the Minnesota Ooser.


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