From: The t'aint of the Midwest -- Indiana
You know, if it is not your thing, that's fine. But your post made a very negative judgment call on all those that practice Wiccanism. Just as Rapier's post did earlier that sucked me in. (Really, if regular posters are going to troll a topic, they should at least declare it beforehand!)
Nature-based, neo-pagan spiritual paths such as Wiccanism are a growing part of the spiritual and religious landscape here in the U.S., and to a lesser extent in Europe and parts of Africa. For the most part, they are positive, life affirming paths based not on religious dogma, but on concepts of spiritual exploration and growth; respect of man and nature; and creating a positive connection with yourself, your fellow beings, the spiritual plane, and the world that you live in.
A pagan will generally never tell you what God you must worship, in what way you must worship, nor how you must live your life.
I have the feeling here that your responses are based not on actual experience, but on a gut-level judgment. So I will ask:
How many pagan folk do you actually know?
Have you ever been to a pagan ritual, gathering, or event?
What is the actual basis for your expressions of judgment and scorn?
At the end of the day, this becomes just like "Your kink is not my kink." and folk clearly have strong opinions on it. My personal view is that paganism actually dovetails quite nicely into D/s because it is not based on religiosity and dogma, but more on a path of spiritual growth, exploration, and freedom - again, it might not be everyone's cup of tea, but that is no reason to bash it out of hand.
I think people who have no experience with wicca think its all about buying black candles and chanting naked in the moonlight. Or concocting love potions and making voodoo dolls to stick pins in. The idea of spiritual self enlightenment and celebrating one's place in the universe is largely overlooked.
There are those who, b/c of negative connotations, do not consider modern wicca to be a religion. For them it is spiritual path they chose to follow. One can easily follow this path without having to ever meet or congregate with other followers. It is very much a personal path. (The modern wiccan movement has been criticized by some who think the path is too personal and there is not enough adherence to old rituals.)
Wicca is an ancient path with roots going as far back as archeologists can go. Early cave men (500,000 years ago) were pagans. http://www.matrixbookstore.biz/cavemen.htm
As the article points out, early man didn't worship a particular god (there is no real evidence of that happening until approx. 7000 years ago) he was spiritually in awe of the many mysteries in his universe.
"The caveman’s senses were keen to this; he could hear the spirit world and could communicate spiritually on a regular basis. Their harsh circumstances were ideal for this to occur and a phenomenon few modern men can comprehend or would believe. Guidance and blessings were often sought and miracles were undoubtedly more commonplace."
For me at least, modern wicca is about trying to get yourself back to being spiritually as one with the universe. It is a personal path that requires a certain degree of self enlightenment to tread. As is, in my never humble opinion, BDSM.
A person who ridicules what they do not know or understand speaks volumes about their stunted growth and lack of spiritual enlightenment.