The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #20699   Message #218414
Posted By: GUEST,Okiemockbird
26-Apr-00 - 03:17 PM
Thread Name: The Pagan Alternative. What's the music?
Subject: RE: The Pagan Alternative. What's the music?
katlaughing wrote: "If we fall into always requiring evidence for a person's faith and spiritual practises, we become repressive."

If a spiritual practice involves historical claims, the historical claims are not excused from the rules for such claims simply because they are related to a spiritual practice.

The Umatilla nation may believe that they have lived on their present lands since the beginning of time. If they claim that among themselves, I have no quarrel. But if they want to impose their claim on a recently-uncovered skeleton which by its age and physical features is clearly not a member of the Umatilla nation, then they are asserting a public claim with implications for what folk other than themselves may do, or not do. In that case I am entitled to dispute, if I so choose.

Adherents of the Murray thesis may sincerely believe that the execution of Charles Stuart was a ritual sacrifice to the god "Janus/Diana", by an English aristocracy which continued to adhere to the religion it had held prior to the conversion to Christianity. If this is in interpretation of a historical event in terms of an abstract paradigm, I disagree but have no deep quarrel. But to the extent that this belief goes farther and actually claims to identify the historical motivations and practices of the actors in the event, then I not only disagree, I am entitled to dispute, and say, There was no such god as Murray's "Janus/Diana", worshipped as part of a widely-organized "witch-cult" which invariably met in "covens" of exactly thirteen people; the English aristocracy were Christian; the religious issues involved in the execution of Charles Stuart were Christian religious issues. If a Murrayite feels "repressed" by my assertions of these things, that is regrettable, but inadvertent. I will try to spare people's delicate sensibilities where I can, but the other fellow's sensibilities need to make room for mine, as mine for them.

T.