Merry Meet all, Ive been lurking around the site for sometime now. I havent done alot of posting, because I must admit to being alittle intimidated by all the knowledge filled folks! Ive been looking for a jumpiing off point, and i think ive found it. Id like to blog today about combining trads. This is something we have all seen done with alot of the media based neo-pagan groups and I believe most of us find it extremely irriatating. But what happens when a Traditional group wants to add/ or create an additional "system" to an already well defined core. We have seen this happen a few times with good results, but it can take a group some 30yrs to re-establish itself within the traditional community. And to those that have forged that new path with good results, i say Congradulations. But this blog is not really about the ones that actually made it to that point. No, this blog is about what happens to those who dont, and the actual damage done due to combining things in a trad. setting. The biggest problem i see in combining two systems is the time it takes, and if a new system is being added, where did the new system come from, or is it being made-up along the way. If the second is the case, then without a proper trained coven, with all participants being of at least a first degree, within a traditional system, the lines of both systems mesh, and here we begin having problems. In training in the mystery religions, the neophytes rely almost completly on their teachers, usually the HPS and HP to guide the student through each new experience, at least in the beginning. Trust is a huge issue. We choose to trust that the person teaching is teaching us properly......So, Ive touched on quite a few issues in this first part, and Id lke to see if this subject is worth going on with. Im looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this...BB Lea

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Comment by Tracy on January 17, 2011 at 9:40
Thank you Makoons for reading and posting, and i agree with you, that some combo's are doable. But i would have to reach a point where both systems are very well learnt in the first place. Then the possibilities are limitless, as long as the core of each "system" doesent change. And the dilima is, how as students do we know we are being taught correctly and seperate trads? And this is where the trust issue comes into play, something im going to write about as soon as i get sometime off from work...which will be thurs and friday. BB Tracy
Comment by Makoons on January 16, 2011 at 16:22

My feeling is that there are ways it can succeed and ways it can fail. I am an Anishinaabe Spiritualist, or more colloquially a Native American Spiritualist. There is no set of rules or regulations as to what MAKES one what I am, though there is a set practice as to how to learn the traditions. There are wrong ways to do ceremonies, wrong ways to get information, and wrong things to call yourself. I also know many people who combine traditions with other religions, usually Christianity.

 

The reality of taking on concepts, beliefs, or ceremonies from one system and combining them is you have to choose to practice them under the umbrella of one path. I cannot be a Christian Anishinaabe Spiritualist. 'Shnab Spiritualists don't believe in hell or the devil, don't follow the teachings of Christ, don't believe in original sin or really sin at all. But someone COULD be a Christian with Anishinaabe influences. I have a friend who is a devout Christian: she attends and is very active in her church, organizing youth groups and trips. But at times she still comes to my women's moon ceremonies. This sort of ceremony is open to interpretation where we speak to a Creator and the Spirits...and it is up to the participant what spirits those are. She also smudges which has no religious content to it except believing that it works.

 

These two things are not at odds, but she has chosen which system she is adhering to. She IS a Christian, and everything else she does falls under the rules and beliefs of that religion. That is the only way in which I forsee a combination working.

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