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  • World Pantheist Movement

    How many of us here are members of - or at least active with - the World Pantheist Movement? Personally, I am not. I looked into it, but I have some fundamental disagreements with enough of their statements that I would've felt fairly hypocritical joining up with them.

    Those who are members, why did you join? What do you gain from being a member? Those who are not, why did you choose not to join? Have you found another organization that works better for you, or do you prefer to be completely unaffiliated?
    13
    Yes, I am!
    7.69%
    1
    No, but I keep up with their news/have attended their events
    0.00%
    0
    No, but I may be in the future.
    53.85%
    7
    No, and I don't plan ever to be.
    30.77%
    4
    Something else entirely.
    7.69%
    1
    If you're lucky you'll find something that reflects you,
    helps you feel your life protects you,
    cradles you and connects you to everything.
    Dar Williams, "The Hudson"

  • #2
    I have been considering it. I am interested in a Pagan/nature based spirituality, but I'm finding it difficult to let go of my atheism, so it seems like a happy medium. They don't seem to have events near me, so I haven't joined the organization yet.

    Comment


    • #3
      Never heard of them. Mostly probably because I've never really looked. Ever since I soured on the whole "organized religion" thing and struck out on my own, I've been rather averse to joining another spiritual organization. While I'm willing to admit that my thoughts to that end might change in the future, I see no tendency toward that direction at this point in my life.

      Ironic, for one who feels everything is connected, but sometimes I think organized bodies like that tend to break the connection unless they're a true community--and then they wouldn't be only pantheists. Does that make any sense?

      Organized groups, no matter how all-encompassing, still tend to create divisions, to my mind, because there are the people in the group, and the people outside the group, and rarely the twain shall meet...

      Just my experience and feelings on it, though... not to say I couldn't be convinced if the right community feeling showed up in a group like that. I just find it unlikely.

      Peace
      Working for Peace Pruning the Rambles

      :hahugh: Banner made by me :hahugh:
      Definition of skepticism: Don't believe everything you think.

      In wildness is the preservation of the world ~Henry David Thoreau

      Pantheism Path Forum Guide

      In memoriam, Basha: 4/1996 - 12/2007 * * * In memoriam, Tika: 9/1996 - 3/2008

      Comment


      • #4
        I've looked into them from time to time, but have gotten a sense that they are interested in a different type of pantheism than I am. I've had some of their leaders tell me I've got them "all wrong", but when I talk to WPM people...they all seem to fall into the very scientific, intellectual, heavily enviornmental and a bit "dry" form of pantheism.

        I get plenty of science, intellectualism etc in my daily life...so I want my religion to be a place where I can freely excercise my spirituality. I really practice pantheism as a religion, and mostWPOers that I've met aren't interested in much religion, many are anti-religion.

        I think that most humans have a very natural religious tendency that itches to be acted out. Many pans express the idea that religion/faith is a lesser persute, and that reason and logic are always, in all things superior. I think each has their rightful place in our lives, and while I use reason to inform my faith, it doesn't neuter my faith of mystery and wonder.

        I belong to some discussion groups that are primarily WPM, and I enjoy the folk, but when I let my "religious" side show...lots of eyes roll, and I end up getting lectured. So no matter what a few tell me about the group being very open to spirituality, my personal experience tells me otherwise.

        I'm not knocking them, they just are interested in different things than I am.
        In a love affair with sunshine

        Live this day like an altar to what you believe

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by AuroraWillow View Post
          I have been considering it. I am interested in a Pagan/nature based spirituality, but I'm finding it difficult to let go of my atheism, so it seems like a happy medium.
          Sounds like they might be a pretty good match for you, AuroraWillow. Their branch of pantheism strikes me as "the smiling person's atheism."

          Originally posted by Eleisawolf View Post
          Ironic, for one who feels everything is connected, but sometimes I think organized bodies like that tend to break the connection unless they're a true community--and then they wouldn't be only pantheists. Does that make any sense?

          Organized groups, no matter how all-encompassing, still tend to create divisions, to my mind, because there are the people in the group, and the people outside the group, and rarely the twain shall meet...
          I agree - and it makes excellent sense. I see communities becoming increasingly fragmented - I have one group of "friends" who I know from crocheting, this group from playwriting, and on and on. I may not have anything else in common with them, and if I'd met them outside that circle I might not have liked them at all, but we have one shared interest, and we only talk about this one shared interest. It's connection, but a fragile one indeed. One reason the WPM worries me is that I see a lot of intolerance for religions and beliefs that disagree with theirs. Not only does that create devisiveness, but if someone is just starting to explore pantheism and comes across that group, there's a danger that the group's beliefs will impose themselves on the newbie's brain, rather than opening the way for hir to keep exploring until ze found what worked for hir.

          Originally posted by cheddarsox View Post
          I belong to some discussion groups that are primarily WPM, and I enjoy the folk, but when I let my "religious" side show...lots of eyes roll, and I end up getting lectured. So no matter what a few tell me about the group being very open to spirituality, my personal experience tells me otherwise.

          I'm not knocking them, they just are interested in different things than I am.
          I've had very similar experiences to yours, Cheddar, and it's a big part of why I decided it wasn't for me. Thanks for sharing this.
          If you're lucky you'll find something that reflects you,
          helps you feel your life protects you,
          cradles you and connects you to everything.
          Dar Williams, "The Hudson"

          Comment


          • #6
            This information surprises me. I was looking forward to becoming a member of WPM.

            In a recent survey they did of their members they found that over 50% were interested in ceremony.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Birdy View Post
              This information surprises me. I was looking forward to becoming a member of WPM.

              In a recent survey they did of their members they found that over 50% were interested in ceremony.
              Then maybe those are the members I need to find. I keep forgetting that the pantheists I meet online - even in WPM-sponsored fora - are not necessarily a representative sample of the general WPM membership!

              Obviously, Birdy, if the WPM speaks to you, nevermind my natterings!
              If you're lucky you'll find something that reflects you,
              helps you feel your life protects you,
              cradles you and connects you to everything.
              Dar Williams, "The Hudson"

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Birdy View Post
                This information surprises me. I was looking forward to becoming a member of WPM.

                In a recent survey they did of their members they found that over 50% were interested in ceremony.
                Not all who do that survey are members. Anyone stumbling onto the site is invited to take it.

                Still, as Windsmith says...don't let our experiences stop you. Here is a chant I learned in a UU church I used to attend..

                "You may be, the one small spark, we all need, to light the whole world."

                Organizations change and grow.

                I went to their site yesterday, as a result of this thread and it looked more religion friendly than I remember it.

                I am not anti WPM, but I had gotten the idea they were sort of anti-me. lol.

                I'm down in podunkville South Carolina, yet tonight...a gathering of us will meet to observe the solstice...just like we always do. None of us are WPM members, yet we managed to find each other. Community is where we create it, in or out of large organizations, all it takes is people dedicated to making it happen.

                Frankly, I'm a rabble rouser, and I like creating ritual and ceremony as opposed to following someone else's script. That't the long way of saying..I'm not much of a joiner, I like to be a leader. If I joined WPM, I'd probably just cause trouble. Not just for the heck of it, but because I ask the questions no one seems to want to deal with, and don't like sitting around waiting endless years for comittees to discuss good ideas into oblivion. I like to try them and see what happens. I have lots of appreciation for "process" but not painless process. I went nuts in my UU church, because it took about 5 years to ease any change into practice...because we never wanted to make anyone uncomfortable...I'm not gonna live that long, and heck, discomfort is not the worst thing that can happen to a person. It beats dying of bordom....

                Ahhhh....have a sacred solstice..y'all

                cheddar
                In a love affair with sunshine

                Live this day like an altar to what you believe

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by cheddarsox View Post
                  I'm down in podunkville South Carolina, yet tonight...a gathering of us will meet to observe the solstice...just like we always do. None of us are WPM members, yet we managed to find each other. Community is where we create it, in or out of large organizations, all it takes is people dedicated to making it happen.

                  Frankly, I'm a rabble rouser, and I like creating ritual and ceremony as opposed to following someone else's script. That't the long way of saying..I'm not much of a joiner, I like to be a leader. If I joined WPM, I'd probably just cause trouble. Not just for the heck of it, but because I ask the questions no one seems to want to deal with, and don't like sitting around waiting endless years for comittees to discuss good ideas into oblivion. I like to try them and see what happens. I have lots of appreciation for "process" but not painless process. I went nuts in my UU church, because it took about 5 years to ease any change into practice...because we never wanted to make anyone uncomfortable...I'm not gonna live that long, and heck, discomfort is not the worst thing that can happen to a person. It beats dying of bordom....

                  Ahhhh....have a sacred solstice..y'all

                  cheddar
                  Cheddar, you rock my, erm, sox.

                  I, like you, like to rouse rabbles. I have a saying about my home Reclaiming community: "I love my community enough to challenge it." But oh, jeez, trying to bring 30 Witches to consensus on anything, nevermind a major procedural change...oy. But I stay, because I love the people, and the work, and the convictions behind the work. And sometimes I challenge just by being there. And sometimes just by being there, I am the one small spark. More often, someone else is the spark for me. Change moves at an imperceptible pace, but I can see that it's not the same group that it was when I found it 5 years ago.

                  I've strayed a bit; what was my point? Oh, yeah - the WPM. I stay and challenge my Reclaiming community because I love it. If I joined WPM, it would probably be just to poke stuff and stir up trouble in an organization I'm not invested in. I believe the word for someone who does that is "troll."
                  If you're lucky you'll find something that reflects you,
                  helps you feel your life protects you,
                  cradles you and connects you to everything.
                  Dar Williams, "The Hudson"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yep, I'm a member, and even wrote a short sidebar about incorporating Paganism into Pantheism in the WPM newsletter (Pan). That was for the most recent issue, Fall 2006. Their Newsletter alone is worth being a member.

                    As far as organization goes, some organization is needed if others are to be reached with our kind of spirituality. A lot of people are longing for a spirituality like ours, and to hide our light is to deprive them of something that I would hate to have missed in my own life. That's why I think organizing is really good in many cases for many reasons. The reason that comes to mind most for me is that I care about future people. Future people like my kids, grandkids, and great grandkids. Future people like that girl who will be born in 2134 who will be spiritually fulfilled by Paganism & Pantheism - if it exists then. Without organization, we are a flash in the pan, here today and soon just a historical footnote in a world that needed us. It is very difficult to have any lasting presence without organization.

                    Our biggest barrier is one we have made ourselves, the fear of religious organizations that results from our past fears and experiences. We can grow beyond that barrier if we just decide to stop being afraid of all religious organization simply because the only organization we've known is Christian (for many of us).

                    That’s not to say that there isn’t a place for solitary practitioners – there is. But we need to remember to think of others, including those of the future – and not just take the path of least resistance, the easiest path for us, because we only think of ourselves.


                    Blessed be.
                    -Equinox

                    I like my spirituality because I think it's true. But I love my spirituality because it makes me excited to be part of the universe. - Ben Trimegistus, 2004.2.23 (That's how I feel too!)

                    (webpage temporarily down) my webpage:

                    In short, I'm a Naturalistic Pagan spiritually at home in Unitarian Universalism.

                    Talk with us! New Naturalistic Pagan Yahoo Group

                    Equinox/Solstice Times . . rise/set and phase dataDaily Devotion for Naturalistic Pagans (Click Here.......... or Here) :fpraiseyo

                    P. S. thanks so much for all the people who have given me karma. With a very slow connection, I simply don't have time to give out nearly as much as I'd like.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by equinox2 View Post
                      Yep, I'm a member, and even wrote a short sidebar about incorporating Paganism into Pantheism in the WPM newsletter (Pan). That was for the most recent issue, Fall 2006. Their Newsletter alone is worth being a member.

                      As far as organization goes, some organization is needed if others are to be reached with our kind of spirituality. A lot of people are longing for a spirituality like ours, and to hide our light is to deprive them of something that I would hate to have missed in my own life. That's why I think organizing is really good in many cases for many reasons. The reason that comes to mind most for me is that I care about future people. Future people like my kids, grandkids, and great grandkids. Future people like that girl who will be born in 2134 who will be spiritually fulfilled by Paganism & Pantheism - if it exists then. Without organization, we are a flash in the pan, here today and soon just a historical footnote in a world that needed us. It is very difficult to have any lasting presence without organization.

                      Our biggest barrier is one we have made ourselves, the fear of religious organizations that results from our past fears and experiences. We can grow beyond that barrier if we just decide to stop being afraid of all religious organization simply because the only organization we've known is Christian (for many of us).

                      That’s not to say that there isn’t a place for solitary practitioners – there is. But we need to remember to think of others, including those of the future – and not just take the path of least resistance, the easiest path for us, because we only think of ourselves.


                      Blessed be.

                      I'm willing to organize but not to neuter my faith or practice to fit in. I'm not saying WPM is asking that. That has been my experience in some pan groups...they explain that to appeal to our largest potential audience, we must not be religious or "romantic", but be all about intellecutalism, reason and discussion rather than anything that might smack too much of spirit.

                      I've already given a chunk of my time and service to a spiritual organization that required me to "tone down" my beliefs and practice for the comfort of others. But in the end, I am not in a faith to make others comfortable. I'm in it because I believe it is true, and because the practice of living the truth enhances my life. It sounds like WPM has the same goals, so I'll try to scrape together some bucks (currently job hunting) and give them a try.

                      I'd love to get the word out about pantheism, because I think there are a lot of unidentified pans out there who would benefit from community.
                      In a love affair with sunshine

                      Live this day like an altar to what you believe

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I have their website in my favourites and visit it quite regularly. I would not join though as I have an aversion to any kind of organization that utilises a hierarchical structure; I just don’t think that that is what religion should be about. Once such structures appear you get a corruption from spirituality to personal power, as seen in both the Christian churches. Actually, when I think about it, I’m not a member of any clubs or societies, perhaps my aversion concerns anything organized?

                        That said I do think that WPM perform a service, they communicate the fact that there are alternatives to the traditional religions and that following your own path doesn’t mean that you are necessarily alone!

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