Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Phew ON PEW, I SAY!

Re: the Goddess Movement, the recent “Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life's survey on American religion” dropped the ball.

At least they had a Pagan category. Guess they lumped us in with Thor and the rest of the old war gods.

Gee, thanks, dudes.

According to the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Pew study “is one of the most careful and comprehensive ever conducted on the American religious landscape.”

Uh, excuse, but I don't think so. They left out the Goddess!

One biggie thingy the Pew study did expose, however, is this: “…it is becoming increasingly obvious that the term ‘Judeo-Christian’ no longer makes sense, given how many Americans are neither.”

While American kiddies are running from the Protestants like a chocolate bunny runs from a hot day in Dallas, not so with American Hindu and Muslim kids. Among Hindus, 76% are under the age of 50. Among Muslims the number is 63% under 50.

So Pew Study sits back, taps its hoary chin, and opines thusly: “As far as the young are concerned, the prospects for a Protestant majority, let alone a Moral Majority, seem bleak.”

Hm. I wonder what this says for the Goddess Movement? Will it be Hindus and Muslims our grandkids duke it out with? Should we be concentrating harder on opening the eyes of American Hindus and Muslims to the Great Goddess?

If we convince them their parents’ gods are deadly, could and would they share that info with Muslims and Hindus in the rest of the world?

BTW, to go to the horse’s mouth re: the Pew Study, jog on over to HERE.
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Thnx to normy for the foto; go HERE to see more.

11 comments:

BBC said...

Well, I've had it with everything, I'm going to a beach. Everyone else is on their own.

Anonymous said...

is there an email address at which one can contact you athana? thanks!

Nephilim22 said...

Athana,
Just out of curiosity, why do you think the country of Iceland is doing so well? They have been declared the happiest country on Earth, they have one of the lowest crime rates anywhere, they have an amazing welfare system, and tons of gender equality measures, but no discernable tie to the Goddess. The only sizable pagan community I know of there is the Asatru. What gives?

Athana said...

Anon, it's ealdboc@maine.rr.com

Athana said...

Nephilim, the key word might be "discernable."

Medusa said...

Athana,
I just went to religions.pewforum.org and didn't even see any inclusion of Pagan in their data. Where did you find that?

Athana said...

medusa,

Go here: http://religions.pewforum.org/affiliations

Then click on "Other Faiths."

Then click on "New Age."

The drop-down menu includes "Wiccan," "Pagan," and "Other New Age."

Medusa said...

Thanks, Athana.

Seems to me they even got this wrong. I don't think most of us consider Pagan and Wiccan subsets of "New Age." (For why "Goddess" isn't a subset of New Age see Monica Sjoo's _Return of the Dark/Light Mother_ and also a very good article in the first issue of Goddess Pages at
http://www.goddess-pages.com/Issue1/Articles/GoddessVsNewAge.html)

Athana said...

medusa, you are right on. New Age and Pagans are sitting on two different planets, spiritually speaking. And wouldn't you subsume Wiccan under the category of Pagan? Who wouldn't do that?

There's a statement in tiny print at the bottom of at least one of the pages on the Pew website asking for comments about the study. One of us should clue them in about the Goddess. And about their other Pagan mistakes.

My, my Pew has a lot to learn!

Medusa said...

Yes, Athana, I agree, I think most of us would consider Wicca as a sub-category of Pagan.

Re: Writing to Pew with our comments about their categories. I think it will have more influence if MORE than just one of us writes. Y'all write!!! They give the following email address for comments:
feedback@pewforum.org

I just sent them an email.Although I didn't mention this in my email to them, I think another problem with their data might be that many Pagans, Wiccans, and Goddessians identify with more than one spiritual path, and if they were asked to pick one, might pick the most "conventional" to give to a person taking a survey. For example, a person who is an Unitarian Universalist and also a Wiccan, might just respond, "Unitarian Universalist." These would then given an underestimate of the number of Wiccans (or Goddessians or Pagans). Maybe someone else wants to write to them about this.

Here's what my email to Pew says (please don't copy it word-for-word though because it lessens the impact if they get the exactly the same thing from a lot of different people--use your own words :-)

Here's what I wrote:

I would like to point out what I feel are some errors in your categorizations:

1) You have not listed Goddess Religion or Goddess Movement at all. Some Goddessians see their faith as a sub-category of Pagan and others, (particularly those who identify as Goddess Christians or Goddess Jews) see it as a separate category entirely. This religious path has at least hundreds of thousands of participants in the US--and more worldwide.

2) Most Pagans would not consider Paganism a sub-category of New Age. There are some very important distinctions. A good explanation of this, in particular as it relates to contemporary Goddess religion, is on
http://www.goddess-pages.com/Issue1/Articles/GoddessVsNewAge.html

3) Wicca is more accurately a sub-category of Paganism, not a separate category. Many Wiccans would consider its listing as a sub-category of New Age inappropriate.

Judith Laura

jezebel said...

Hi Athana & everyone,

Just wanted to give you a new link to Jacqui's article in Goddess Pages (everything has been moved around!) - it is http://tinyurl.com/4cknct, the full URL is just ridiculous, but that should work.

Looking forward to reading the book!

Geraldine