Killing, Death, Hunting, and Pagans – Editorial

death_tree

I just finished a week of hunting deer in Wisconsin, and am a Pagan. Most Pagans don’t have a deep connection to hunting, I guess their demographic is more urban than many religious groups. Hunting is not a big Pagan topic of conversation unless you are from, or live in, a rural area.

A recent blog post by author Stifyn Emtys caught my attention. He wrote questioning hunting, well really questioning it as if hunting is essentially “enjoying killing”. The post goes on to conclude that some,  “people don’t kill because they have to. They kill because they want to. And that, my friends, isn’t just scary. It’s horrifying.“ Another, commenting on social media about that post, took it a step further with, “Hunting, when one has access to vegetation and other food sources is just cold-blooded murder, no way around it. ” 

Murder is killing a person with malice a forethought, quite a stretch to classify hunting with this term.

What offends me is that the post’s author admits that hunting experience is an area of limited personal contact and understanding, but still concludes, “ people who kill animals in the name of sport or spirituality …. reveal something starkly horrific about the human condition.” The author equates hunting with “enjoying killing”.  I don’t hunt because I enjoy killing. I accept that many things in life involve death, and yes, sometimes killing.

As a Pagan and a hunter, I don’t feel compelled to proselytize about either activity. There are plenty of horror stories about both designations, there are plenty of reason to be neither, it is a personal choice.  The blog post did get me to think about killing, death, and particularly our relationship as Pagans to it.

Where is the Pagan experience with death in this intellectual argument? It seemed lacking. My spirituality and experience has changed how I look at death, and at killing. I don’t see it as a punishment, an act of fate or karma, even something to fear. I see it all around me, everyday.

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PNC-Minnesota – a year of growth – Editorial

From cocyeabroomstick.blogspot.com

PNC-Minnesota began about five months ago (we had five initial posts in July). We believe we have had a substantial impact within our community, region, and nationally.  Our readership is mainly Pagan, but our audience ranges the whole spectrum based on subject. We have had just over 99,000 page views since we began on July 28th, 2010

Our top viewed post with 12, 542 views in one day on Nov. 9th, (   Rape Survivor Devastated by TSA Enhanced Pat Down by Cara Schulz ), has completely skewed our stats, but that is the nature of the internet.   Cara saw an emerging issue, and knew the additional impact it could have for victims of assault and jumped on the story. National blogs (including mainstream news like ‘Newsweek‘ and even Wikipedia ) linked to her article and resulted in that one post generating 84% of our page views this year!  Cara’s past media experience and her  ‘nose for news’ that she brought to PNC-Minnesota has been invaluable. Cara also writes for PNC’s Pagans and Politics.

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Spin vs Truth – EDITORIAL

Spin is everywhere today.  It is the selective distribution of specific details from a particular viewpoint.  Its aim is to influence others to adopt an opinion without any serious intellectual consideration. Originally “spin” was mainly used for those with an image to protect, those caught in embarrassing, integrity busting situations. The art of putting the best possible face on a bad situation. “Political” spin began as most important for those individuals in the highest political positions. Traditional public relations may sometimes rely on a “creative presentation” of the facts.  Spin however implies disingenuous, deceptive and/or highly manipulative tactics in doing so.

Congressman Harry Reid’s great-great uncle, Remus Reid, was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889.

Here’s a classic account by Harry Reid’s staff, to spin the above history, as an example:Remus Reid was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory. His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets and intimate dealings with the Montana railroad.

Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to government service, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887, he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency.

In 1889, Remus passed away during an important civic function held in his honor when the platform upon which he was standing collapsed.”

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