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Is It Possible To Be a Christian And a Pagan? [Struggling with My Religious Identity]


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Hi everyone, you can call me Faith on the message board. I am a new member of the community and this is my first post! 

I'd like to start by asking everyone a question that's been on my mind: Do you believe it's possible to be both Christian and Pagan? 

I am very interested in Paganism (specifically Wicca), however, I am also drawn to Christianity and consider myself somewhat of a middle ground. 

I attend church. I read the bible. But I also believe in magick and have an interest in witchcraft and casting spells. 

As this is a more progressive and liberal leaning forum, I thought I'd have better luck here finding more open-minded folks who wouldn't shame me for my thoughts and opinions and would be able to give me a judgement free zone to talk about my religious identity. 

With that being said...

Is anyone here a Christian-Pagan? Or perhaps a Christian witch?  

Has anyone experienced these feelings before?

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Hi there Faith,

Welcome to the forum.  I hope you like participating here and I hope you might even get some answers to what you are seeking.

When I read your question I looked into paganism and its connections to Christianity and found that there is a thing called Christopaganism, where adherents combine the elements of both Christianity and Paganism.  So it would seem that indeed there are those who believe it is possible to be both Christian and Pagan.

I can't say I have ever had any feelings for becoming a witch, Christian or otherwise, and I don't label myself as a Christian-Pagan, but I think I can understand how both Paganism and Christianity can speak to somebody.  In my opinion, whatever works for you and contributes to peace and harmony in our community, is alright with me.  If what you believe in does no harm to community, and better yet, if it contributes positively, then all power to you I say.

Of course there will be a lot of Christians who disagree.  One) a lot probably won't like somebody who is a different type of Christian to what they understand Christianity to be, hijacking 'their' name so to speak.  And two) I am sure plenty will cite verses from the bible (primarily OT) that condemn witches and sorcery, most likely not knowing precisely what the authors meant when they called out such acts or behaviors, but nonetheless deciding what they 'know' God's will to be.

So I'm afraid I don't really have much of an answer for you other than to say Progressive Christianity seeks to create community that is inclusive of ALL people, so to me that sounds like Christianity is big enough to accept paganism as well.

Cheers

Paul

 

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Welcome, @Faith201! That's a great question. Whether one can be both Christian and pagan depends on who you ask. I don't have any issues with it. 

You might be interested in reading ChristoPaganism: An Inclusive Path. It's a really good book.  

And here's one I've not read yet, but would like to some day: The Path of a Christian Witch.

Here's another one I've read, but I'm not so sure I recommend: Christian Wicca: The Trinitarian TraditionThe problem with this one is that the description of Christianity is exclusively of an evangelical type, and I would argue highly inaccurate. 

My understanding (which could be wrong) of the path you are exploring is that it's bound to ruffle the feathers of both Christians and pagans alike. You can imagine how Christians will generally react. And many pagans consider the two broad traditions to be incompatible. Don't be surprised if you receive flak from all directions. (I'm not saying that to scare you off, but to make you aware of the possibility.)

I hope that helps. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Do you believe it's possible to be both Christian and Pagan? 

Short answer, in my opinion, yes.

I'm not a pagan myself, but happen to be involved in a publishing company that in one of its imprints (Moon Books) publishes a few dozen pagan titles a year. Which I completely support. It's by far our oldest religious tradition. It's based on a respect for Nature, which we're all going to have to adopt, if we're going to survive. It's decentralized to the point that you can pretty much make up your own practices/find your own gods/goddesses, but then that's pretty much what we've always been doing anyway.

And much of "Orthodox Christianity" as understood today is pretty much pagan. Key doctrines like the Virgin Birth, Son of God, Resurrection - they weren't understood as such by the very first Christians, but were common currency in the beliefs of people in the Roman Empire at the time, (and around the world), and the Church absorbed them as it became assimilated into the Empire, and eventually took it over.  

But, as already said, you'll get flak from both sides. One of our authors is Mark Townsend, an Anglican/Episcopalian priest who left the ministry to become a pagan-

https://www.johnhuntpublishing.com/moon-books/our-books/diary-heretic

and there are others....I find the crossover journeys between different religions (but I think they're all far more closely connected than we generally realize) fascinating.....

All the best with the journey.

 

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Depends on the Christian you ask. 

Different interpretations of Christianity allow for different degrees of flexibility in terms of belief. 

I think it's more important for you to determine for yourself what you believe, and then from there find the group that best fits your spiritual support needs. 

Don't worry about what others think. Basically, no matter what you believe, there's a Christian out there that thinks you're wrong. So don't worry about it. 

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