P2P Aspects of Paganism
"Classical Paganism would be as practiced in the times of the Roman Empire.
Neo-Paganism and Wicca would have many elements of more modern philosophies incorporated in them.
Norse paganism should be considered separately from these broad forms.
Paganism as seen as non mainstream religion is very broad - so please say which form you are talking about as clearly as you can. And list under here if it is not one of the forms above.
This belief system contains inherent aspects of p2p ethics. Commonly the wicca meet in a coven and nowadays these are oft called circles. Circle shows a peer equality element.
shows the circle as a ritual space and is DIFFERENT from the meaning of circle as a group. Many different sorts of circles (they are found in Native American forms - medicine wheels and also in Finland Samí religion - here circles have a wide variety of different meanings and applications - for a good analogy think of a room and what it is used for.) The discussion section on that wikipedia article touches on some aspects worth considering-
There are several writings that have p2p elements in them:
here at wwwDOTsacred-texts.com/bos/bos258.htm
The Laws from Lady Sheba
"51. If you would keep a book (your Black Book) let it be in your own
hand of write, let Brothers and Sisters copy what they will, but never let the book out of your hands and never keep the writings of another."
" 57. And our oppressors know well: "Ye may not be a Witch alone.""
" 95. Ever recognizing there be people who can never agree to work under
96. But at the same time, there be some people who cannot rule justly.
97. To those who ever must be chief, there is one answer.
98. Void the Coven, or seek another one or make a Coven of your own, taking with you those who will go.
99. To those who cannot rule justly the answer be, "Those who cannot bear your rule will leave you."
100. For none may come to meetings with those with whom they are at variance.
101. So, an either cannot agree, "Get hence, for the Craft must ever survive.""
This deals with group dynamics and tries to keep peers still in a network and working to the same ends even when it may be they have slightly different directions.
" 108. That none shall use the Art in any way to do ill to any.
109. However much they injure us, HARM NONE"
shows an awareness of spiritual equality.
" 136. Let the Craft keep books with the names of all herbs which are
good for men, and all cures, so all may learn.
137. But keep another book with all the Bales and Apies and let only the Elders and other trustworthy people have this knowledge."
THE NEW BOOK OF THE LAW
[sources: The Book of The Law, The Old Laws for the Old Religion, The Great Book of the Law, The Dragon Law]
"11. The Temples of the Gods, which are Their abode on Earth, shall
belong to all Their children, and each Circle shall be as a special family. Do naught against any Temple or any family of the Wicca, lest you do that thing unto the Gods, and against yourself. "
"25. You shall never take unduly from any human, animal or elemental
that which is not yours to take -- for if you steal from another, in the end you will have to sacrifice something dearer to you in order to attain the balance. "
"28. If a stranger sojourns with you, you shall do them no wrong; they
shall be as one of the Circle, born amongst ye, and you shall deal with them as you would yourself. "
" 36. Remember that your children are Goddess-spawned, and are free
spirits. You do not own nor control them. They are your brethren, come to visit for a while, that they may share in the vision of your love and wisdom. Let each parent realize that although they may teach and guide with love, the child shall also teach the parent, and aid them in their growth and lesson "
"... For the children of
the Wicca must aid the Gods, and work with Them, otherwise the Gods cannot aid and work with you. Ever remember that the Priest and Priestess are the living representatives of the God and Goddess Forces, and likewise that all humans carry these forces within them, though they may lie dormant and unawakened. "
"47. Let each of you inscribe your own record of our ways and teach-
ings. For the course of each Wiccan should be charted, that the patterns of their life-web may be made known and utilized. Let each Wiccan start their Book of Light with the teachings and lore of their tradition, yet let it also contain the rites and ways of each in- dividual, which are the harvest of each child of the Wicca, to use the wisdom of their heritage as the seeds of their own wisdom. Thus shall our lore and knowledge continue to grow and unfold, like a beautiful flower. "
"49. If your Circle owns any land, let all guard it, and help to keep
it clean. Let all justly guard all monies of the Circle, as well as the rights and property of all members of the Circle. "
"69. The Elders of the old and new Circles shall meet in peace and with
respect, to decide the level of interaction and connection between the Circles. Yet it is known that the splitting of a Circle often means strife. So only if it is truly in a spirit of peace and harmony should the Circles meet for the celebration of the Great Festivals. 70. None shall enter the Circle that have a sickness or an ailment which may be passed on to the Lady's other children -- for to do so causes harm to yourself, as well as to the others of the Circle. Rather should the Healers go unto the sick one, that through the love of the Gods they shall be made well and whole once more. "
THIS section may be useful too
" 78. Of those who would inquire as to the ways of the Goddess, or who
wish to become of the Wicca, ye shall search their hearts, and even into their spirits you shall look, as you are able. For the Wicca do not look to acquire mere numbers. Let none be turned away if their hearts are true, and their desire earnest. 79. The hidden children are like the strings of a harp: each one may give a clear note, and when gathered together in sympathy and accord, they shall give rise to a beautiful symphony. Yet when struck without reason or thought, these notes may cause discord or disharmony. Therefore the Gods decree to Their Teachers and Priests that all must be taught to master their harp, and to pluck their strings with care, that they cause no discord or imbalance. 80. Choose the Priests and Teachers of the Wicca with diligence and with care. The qualities that you should search for within them are Faith, Belief, Knowledge, Ability, Patience, Leadership, Humility, and a loving nature -- for they must lead and teach the children of the Goddess, and will thereby have the power to do great good, or to cause great imbalance. "
www DOT circlesanctuary DOT org/aboutpagan/contours DOT htm
Spiritual Contours of the Contemporary Pagan Worldview, by Dr. Dennis D. Carpenter
"Selected for examination are the theme of interconnectedness, the immanent/transcendent dimension, animism and spiritism, the monotheism/polytheism dimension, and the concept of magic. In summary, the main purpose of this article is to describe the major spiritual contours of the worldview inherent in contemporary Paganism. In presenting this information, it is recognized that the diversity that typifies contemporary Paganism makes it difficult, if not impossible, to identify a worldview that characterizes all Pagans. In recognition of this situation, this article explores Pagan worldview along the contours specified as revealed in some of the available Pagan literature."
so the article touches on the aspects that are revealing of who peers are in a pagan context. BUT it is very broad.
www DOT witchvox.com/va/dt_va.html?a=usfl&c=basics&id=2888
"There ARE some circumstances where a spell may be shared. There are group projections that covens may do for a specific situation or by request from someone that they know well."
"Q: Where can I find a coven?
A: Covens are usually an "invitation only" group of people who work very hard to blend their personalities and magic for a common purpose. This would not be an easy thing to create with an "open door" policy. Chances are, you will have to meet the approval of the entire group to be considered for membership and you must have the recommendation of a current member to be considered. That said, if you are starting out or have been solitary, but are now looking for a group to join, you have to "go where the Witches are!" Visit your local Pagan shop and check for workshops and local meetings. Attend open circles and events in your area. Go to the Witches of The World section and email some of the Pagans listed near you. Witches are strong individuals, so most covens are looking for people who can hold their own in Life and not for followers or hangers-on. Some covens or groups do offer "outer circle' training or teaching for new seekers. Study, study, study! If you can bring something TO a group, you will increase your chances of being asked to join one."