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RELIGION

Religion might be defined as cultural practices which orientate a person in the world and give them a set of values to live by.

Religion can be good or bad depending on how well it helps people align themselves with the world as it really is and value the things that are important for a good life.

Pagans are suspicious of religion which had been devised by an imperial power. They suspect it may be intended to keep them in their place and prevent them from achieving their full potential. Pagan religion is devised by members of a Pagan community itself.

Religion connects people to the world they live in. Because people and the world they inhabit both change over time, religion itself has to change with them if it is to serve people well. So development of religion is a continual process.

Worship is a practice that encourages people to see worth in things. Good worship will encourage practitioners to understand what are the important powers in the world to pay attention to and which will support the development of a rewarding life.

Ritual sacrifice is a practice of giving up something of value in reverence of an important power. Often to gain the important things of life we have to give up other things. Ritual sacrifice prepares us to do this.

Supernatural beings. Pagans understand that if we only look at the surface of life we can't develop a full picture of the underlying connections between things. Thus we imagine supernatural beings which don't have solid visible bodies like a natural being but still can have a visible effect. For a rational Pagan a supernatural being is an abstract process or activity which is fully part of the world. It obeys the natural laws and doesn't have an existence independent of the stuff the world is made of.

Deities. A deity is a mental picture of a supernatural being. A deity exists in so far as people believe in it and thus keep the deity in their minds. In a different way also a deity exists in so far as it reflects an actual truth about the world.

Myths. Myths are stories that encode worldly wisdom in an easily digestible and memorable form.

Runes. To understand the world we need to break it up into its underlying component pieces or runic elements. So runes are mental concepts that are given special attention. Runes come in sets which ideally form a comprehensive mental toolkit for making sense of life.