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What is your New Age tolerance?


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#1 Sylvan

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 08:43 PM

This forum has plenty of threads about religion and witchcraft and especially common is the theme of folks having to rewire themselves after eschewing a Christian upbringing. I'll talk about my own experience in that regard sometime. I am pretty much at peace with my Christian upbringing and so talking about it isn't necessarily new territory for me.

However, I am curious to hear how other witches regard and react to/interact with/tolerate/etc. the mainstream New Age movement, both its ideas and its practitioners. I realize the term New Age has all kinds of different meanings and is a very, very large banner under which all sorts of different, event conflicting, philosophies and attitudes lie, but I am curious about each witch's personal experience with any of it and how they deal with it.

I seem to have a very cautious practical allegiance with it. While I bet I join many forum members in rejecting the ubiquitous love/light/harm none/happiness is a birthright mallarky, I also concede that the movement has not been entirely bad. Particularly in the area that I live, new age people are my best choice for potential friends; there's a lot of fundies around here, and the pagan groups that I do know of are pretty Disney-ized.

However, when somebody babbles on about "The Secret," I just want to say, you know, that is a super oversimplification of a very very watered down and sanitized version of some of the main principles of witchcraft, but I just hold my tongue instead. I really don't want to tell any new age people about my craft. (Or any people, for that matter, lol).

Also, I can find some supplies I need in the town's one shop which many would consider new age, but which also has a decent selection of craft supplies, like pendulums, herbs, tarot cards, stones, etc.

And I do admit, during my early twenties, I read a lot of new age books--a few truly wonderful and a lot of mediocre and watered down muck--that helped pave the way to my subsequent understanding and acceptance of myself as a witch (I never say that I chose to walk a certain path, more like I figured out who and what I really was).

I have some more of my own experiences to add, but I thought I'd throw this out there first and see what sticks.

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#2 sarasuperid

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 08:55 PM

I am the same as you. I kinda put up with New Age as the lesser "evil." And I have given up trying to correct anyone unless they really seem like they want to learn. Posted Image

I go to the new age shops to get "stuff." I am nice to new agers I meet, because they might know someone else like me and I might make new friends through them. I basically worked my way through the magic community until I found some serious practioners, it took years. But now I am in touch with witches from two different traditions in my area.

And my coven has gotten progressively more traditional and serious over time since I started with it. The members who weren't willing to go as deep with their craft eventually dropped out to go solitary. I miss them, but they wanted to keep it light, and thats their perogative.

New Agers can be some really nice awesome people to know and even though they don't tend to have an interest in the darker sides of things, at least we both know magic works and can talk about that much. They don't think I am nuts off the bat, right?

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#3 Aloe

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 09:15 PM

I've got no problem with New Agers, like Sara said, they don't think I'm looney for believing that magic works so I like being around them. I just can't discuss some of the serious aspects of my personal craft with them because they get horrified/sick/naseous/angry/scared.

Well, I said I've got no problem with them, but actually I do have a problem with the New Age idea that nothing is really 'evil' or bad, its just misunderstood and if we could all just love the evil out of existance everything would be hunky dory and utopic. I don't agree with that, think it's a philosophy that opens people up to massive abuses. I don't want to hijack this thread with a discussion about evil, I'm just saying that's really my only personal issue with most of the New Agers I've ran across. Not all of them subscribe to that, and for the ones that don't, we may do and believe different things but we get along just fine and I think they're awesome.

Also, they're rare in my area, so I have pretty low exposure. lol I don't go where they are on the net.

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"The people who live in the Ozark country of Missouri and Arkansas were, until very recently, the most deliberately unprogressive people in the United States. Descended from pioneers who came West from the Southern Appalachians at the beginning of the nineteenth century, they made little contact with the outer world for more than a hundred years. They seem like foreigners to the average urban American, but nearly all of them come of British stock, and many families have lived in America since colonial days. Their material heirlooms are few, but like all isolated illiterates they have clung to the old songs and obsolete sayings and outworn customs of their ancestors." Ozark Magic and Folklore

#4 Abhainn

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 09:36 PM

I don't think I'm getting less tolerant, but I am getting more specialized. When I got started, I embraced everything because I didn't know which direction I wanted to take. Over time, I've weeded out a lot that just doesn't resonate with me. I find the New Age people are more willing to talk about topics I'm interested in, and are usually more informed. Makes sloughing off the surface of the conversation easier so we can get to the meat of the topic.

I haven't met any New Agers that exude the love and light thing. Most of my experience, though, has been with Elementalists, Native American spirituality, etc., and they tend to be pretty down to earth (no pun intended).

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#5 Mountain Witch

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 09:43 PM

When I had my shop, I frequently peddled my wares at "New Age" Expos and the like. For the most part, we all got along just fine ... recognizing that there were varying paths. The only ones I didn't get along with were the "all is love and light" types. But rather than say "hogwash" to their face (I did have to see them for 2-3 days), I just ignored them or if they wouldn't be ignored, I'd just explain my path was different than theirs & try to leave it at that. (There was one, however, that I finally had to deflect from my booth. I'd have gotten cavities or worse, diabetes from all her sweetness.)

Some of them may not have a clue as to what they're really selling but I don't care. I'm not going to take the time to educate them and depending on how much time I have, I may even listen to their version of what X is good for (snorting to myself the whole while). Long as they have what I want at a fair price, I'll purchase it.

I do try to be polite ...

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#6 Guest_Rev. Gregori_*

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 09:59 PM

living a drive away from sedona and dealin the the international gem and mineral show here in tucson, i've come across soooo many old hippies/new agers that actually look down on witches. they like wiccans cuz of the "glenda the good witch" crap. but anything other than wiccans they see as being primitive and too sinister.

like the above said, i do visit some of the shops for various things, but hanging out with them...nah. only so much mayan calendar indigo children aliens are our saviours crap.

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#7 CelticGypsy

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 10:15 PM

Every once in awhile, I " like " a light meal. Just kidding !

I tolerate them, there is a New Age/Wiccan establishment near me, and I'll go in and browse for some stuff, ya know toss a bit of darkness around the room, that kind of stuff. lol .. Just kidding ! More times than not, I'm on a mission to find a certain thing

Great Post Sylvan.

Regards,
Gypsy

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#8 Michele

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 10:33 PM

People don't usually bother me. I have friends of many different religions/beliefs, and I just really take it as to each their own.

M

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#9 Mountain Witch

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Posted 18 May 2012 - 10:46 PM

[...] anything other than wiccans they see as being primitive and too sinister.



But they'd be spot-on ...! :D

For purposes of action nothing is more useful than narrowness of thought combined with energy of will.
~ Henri Frederic Amiel

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#10 Evergreen47

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 12:28 AM

What do I think about New Agers? I don't. They're there. I'm me. If they can't deal, it's no skin off my ass.

The older gentleman who runs the local chain of New Age-y shops in town is a sweet man, and he's very kind to stock or order certain items that I request. In my dealings with New Age practitioners, I've never met one who sincerely cared to hear my deeper thoughts, and like others have said, I wouldn't share my craft with anyone unless I saw a genuine interest to learn. People are people, and you'll find shitty New Agers just like there are shitty Xtians (though they seem to have a near monopoly on those).

I'm a pretty "live and let live" type of girl and I've been accused more times than I can remember of being a "peace-loving, dirty hippie." If that's the image that people get from me, I actually prefer it. It leaves less to have to explain. Posted Image <------ This is me pretending to be nothing more than a hippie. This is is what I do when no one's looking.------->Posted Image


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#11 Jevne

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 02:45 AM

New age-types, eh? Well, I acknowledge that they are there (sometimes) and will chat with a few on occasion, mostly just to be polite, but sometimes because they seem like nice people. Like someone else said, I don't really get into deep conversations with New Age people. I don't hang out with the local wiccans or the like. Nothing they do or say, really interests me. I mean, I haven't hurt any of them, at least not permanently, so I must tolerate them. Might go into their shoppes for supplies, or cruise the outskirts of a community gathering, cause I like to practice "stuff" on people, but we definitely aren't BFFs.
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#12 Wych Elm

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 06:22 AM

My tolerance at the moment is pretty low. I get really frustrated with their automatic assumption that we're all love, light & blessed be.

My biggest issue is, what I see as, a disrespect of cultures. I lost it on youtube with someone over a video by a black American on hoodoo & Voodoo. A wiccan had started the usual 'witches don't hurt anyone, this isn't real witchcraft' crap blah blah, apparently witchcraft is only European. American hoodoo & Voodoo has slavery in it's history. There's suffering & persecution in it's history and the same with Native American. These cultures & trads don't need these idiots preaching about what they can & cannot do and I know they get peeved with it. New Agers seem to hijack everything with no respect for the history and deeper culture. I told this person they were disrespecting black culture by their ignorance. I read a piece online by someone having a rant about all this working with angels. Find your angel for love & light & it will work with you. This person pointed out that in Judeo-Christian stories, the appearance of an angel was always a frightening and overwhelming event. Which it was! So what on earth are they really working with? 'Oooh Archangel such-n-such came into my bedroom last night, it was lovely'. Oh right, every other time Archangel such-n-such has appeared the person has been temporarily blinded & wet their pants in blind fear, but no, you had tea & scones with them (ok, slight exaggeration...). Plus they're 'working' with Christian angels & slagging Christianity at the same time. :twisted_witch:

I know I've made some sweeping statements & exaggerations but my goat has been got.

Blessed be, everyone. :sickwitch:

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#13 ejfinch

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 12:52 PM

Every once in awhile, I " like " a light meal. Just kidding !

I tolerate them, there is a New Age/Wiccan establishment near me, and I'll go in and browse for some stuff, ya know toss a bit of darkness around the room, that kind of stuff. lol .. Just kidding ! More times than not, I'm on a mission to find a certain thing

Great Post Sylvan.

Regards,
Gypsy


:roflhard:

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#14 lusa

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 05:23 PM

I can tolerate anyone believing in anything so long as they don't push their beliefs on me or mess with my civil rights. New agers don't threaten me, and when people do annoy me I generally use this amazing technique called 'walking away' which saves me time and fist bruising. I think the religious extremists opposing same-sex marriage here in the states are an example of where (esp in a nation supposedly founded on the premise of separation of church and state) personal beliefs mess with the lives of others. I think schools run by religious groups getting state money and religious institutions getting tax breaks are hoaxes too. But some silly new ager at the pet store telling me i should have my cat's qi checked out doesn't bother me since i can say, 'no thanks' and go on my merry way.
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#15 The Old Crone

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 05:41 PM

As long as they don't try and shove their peace and light crap down my throat-I could really care less about 'em. Live and let live.
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#16 o_O

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Posted 19 May 2012 - 08:57 PM

Tolerance is key for me when dealing with New Age individuals. I don't care much for their attitude when they get answers to the questions they ask me about my practice(if you didn't want to know then don't ask, or at least have the decency to shut up and walk away.) I often get people who think that since I look 19(though I'm about a decade older), I must not know what I'm doing. They don't seem to understand that I've been doing things for as long as many of them have, being brought up in it. I also hate the "you call on spirits;you better make sure to take a cleansing bath!" That is rubbish and if umpteen generations of my family never did, why start now. Some of the people who are into Shamanic and Native beliefs are okay, but this whole, they all believe the same thing concept needs to go, as I get tired of people telling me what I must believe since I was brought up Cherokee. Key note, my clan has secrets and we keep them that way and if you're not blood, meaning Cherokee and of the Paint clan, we're not telling you, we might not even if you do have those qualifications but we feel you don't have the capability of fully "understanding". We might give clues, but that's about it.

Okay, it kinda of sounds like I was ranting, which I was, but that's how things go for me most often. Other than that I like certain discussions and ideas many new age people have, just not the direction they try to take everything.

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#17 Wych Elm

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 06:23 AM

They don't seem to understand that I've been doing things for as long as many of them have, being brought up in it. I also hate the "you call on spirits;you better make sure to take a cleansing bath!" That is rubbish and if umpteen generations of my family never did, why start now.


I would really love to hear more about this kind of thing from people who have been raised in family traditions. What modern New Age thought tells us we should be doing versus what has actually been done for generations. Unless there's a thread somewhere already that someone could point me to.

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#18 Whiterose

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 06:49 AM

Key note, my clan has secrets and we keep them that way and if you're not blood, meaning Cherokee and of the Paint clan, we're not telling you, we might not even if you do have those qualifications but we feel you don't have the capability of fully "understanding". We might give clues, but that's about it.



I would really love to hear more about this kind of thing from people who have been raised in family traditions. What modern New Age thought tells us we should be doing versus what has actually been done for generations. Unless there's a thread somewhere already that someone could point me to.



Its just a hunch here, but I'm guessing you wont get much out people raised in a family tradition....

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#19 Wych Elm

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 08:28 AM

I was thinking more about just simple yes or no answers. The bath cleansing was interesting. I've always felt closer to nature when I've got dirty hands & my muddy wellies on rather than freshly bathed & incensed up to the 9s.

Edited by Vicky, 20 May 2012 - 04:51 PM.

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#20 Nefreya

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Posted 20 May 2012 - 01:50 PM

Every once in awhile, I " like " a light meal. Just kidding !

I tolerate them, there is a New Age/Wiccan establishment near me, and I'll go in and browse for some stuff, ya know toss a bit of darkness around the room, that kind of stuff. lol .. Just kidding ! More times than not, I'm on a mission to find a certain thing

Great Post Sylvan.

Regards,
Gypsy


:lolol: :thankyou:



Most of the time I tolerate, however, I get really peeved when they feel the need to 'save' me (in fact this also applies to the jehovah witness who has apparently made it his personal mission!!). Apart from this being an apparent lack of respect for my ways, like many of you, generations of mine before me have done fine without the need for being saved ... we are quite happy wallowing around in the hedge thank you. Thankfully this doesn't happen very often ... I'm normally left alone, being seen as the local cantankerous misfit ... suits me fine ... love & light to you all :jawdrop:

Edited by Nefreya, 20 May 2012 - 01:52 PM.

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