Paganism - or more correctly Neo-Paganism, is a recent (post-World-War-II) revival of ancient mostly European and mostly pre-Christian religions. There is a strong emphasis on fertility religions and the female/Goddess principle. The approach overall is very nondogmatic, with everyone free to adopt their own interpretation - the exact oposite to Literalist (fundamentalist) exoteric monotheism. There is also a strong emphasis on magick and occultism, and indeed there is a strong link between Neo-Paganism and contemporary Hermeticism in general.
The most important of the Neo-Pagan religions is Wicca (meaning "Wise ones"), claiming to date back to the Old Stone Age but in fact founded in the 1940s by Gerald Gardiner, and itself split into a number of sects. The original Wicca of Gardiner and Alex Sanders (Gardnerian and Alexandrian Wicca), although still quite big in England, has been largely supplanted by various American and more feminist forms, as popularised by writers and practicioners like Starhawk and Z. Budapest.
Other Neo-Pagan religions include Druidic, Runic, and Nordic revivals.
|Links - Paganism / Neopaganism||
The Witches Voice - fantastic on-line resource, heaps of information, also heaps and heaps of links - Best of the Web
Pagans.Org - includes web pages, pagan postcards, and more
Cerridwen's Cauldren - couldn't access site when last tried
Fire Rose's World of Wicca and Witchcraft - a very good wiccan/pagan resource - check out the huge Table of Contents
The Druidry Links Page - a huge listing of pagan and occult links
Neo-Pagan Religious Traditions - short intro, has annoitated links
Sibylline Order (site map) - lots of topics on Paganism
Paganism - Alpha and Omega - links to newsgroups. Nice midi music on this page - couldn't access site when last tried
The Skeptic Tank Pagan/Wiccan Information Web Page Listing - some material exposing the hate and persecution by the bigoted Christian church against Paganism and Wicca, with Pagan replies
Ask A Wiccan - Satire - some people might be offended
The Encyclopedia Mythica - mythology in general (central to much of traditional paganism)
Polarity - a new Philosophy - The Message from Mount Taratara by Werner Krieger - This book does not talk about NeoPaganism as such, but the theme fits into the wider frame of NeoPaganism
Wise Wayz "A gathering place to share information and for exploration. Spirituality...Healing...Magick...Community!" - material on wicca, paganism, healing, herbs, spirituality, magick, and divination, along with links. Unfortunately the main page takes a long time to load because of the many banners and images
|Drawing Down the Moon : Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America Today||The Spiral Dance : A Rebirth of the Ancient Religion of the Great Goddess||Triumph of the Moon|
|by Margot Adler||by Starhawk||by Ronald Hutton|
|Good unbiased introduction to modern Paganism, a comparative approach written by a journalist, rather than an account by an "insider", but all the more objective for that reason||The classic work on modern Wicca, Goddess worship, and feminist spirituality||The first full-scale study of the only religion England has ever given the world, modern pagan witchcraft, otherwise known as wicca. Meticulously researched, it provides a thorough account of an ancient religion that has spread from English shores across four continents|