Thoughts on Community

 

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Almost a week ago, I started a new blog called Guide to Gaelic Polytheism.  The idea is simple: make an online resource for and by Gaelic Polytheists. And right away, I am noticing a few trends…

First, people immediately commented how excited they were for the project. Which I’m glad! This project is about helping the community, and if the community didn’t want it…Then that’d be a waste of my time.

Next came people wanting to help. Which is even better! This is suppose to help bring the community’s resources together, so having people interested in contributing is fantastic!

And then…people questioning how they could contribute. People telling me that they want to help, but aren’t good enough to contribute. People informing me that they just don’t know anything.

That’s when my heart broke. Listening to all these wonderful people–people I looked up to!–telling me they couldn’t contribute because they had nothing to offer.

It’s so frustrating to see all these wonderful, talented people say that about themselves. I remind you these are people I look up to. People who challenge my thinking daily. People who inspire me with their art. People who are so kindhearted I want to frame them as what Hospitality should be.

What is this standard people are trying to meet? What is this knowledge threshold people must match? What is the bar that must be jumped over?

So I want to take this opportunity to tell the Gaelic Polytheists out there: You have so much value in you. Each and every single Gaelic Polytheist has something to offer the community. I truly believe that. At the bare minimum, everyone has their perspective to offer the community. And that’s so vital.

Editorial pieces about how one interprets the deities would be wonderful. Articles about how to leave an offering would be lovely. Blogs dedicated to your personal religious practice would be outstanding. Devotional art in all its forms would be so awesome.

Please don’t sell yourself short, Gaelic Polytheists out there. You have so much to offer. Even if it isn’t religious in the end: this community can always use a friendly face to get accounting advice from, or how to cook the best brownies, or how to deal with families who don’t understand our religion.

The only thing this community doesn’t need is bigots. If you’re harboring any sort of bigotry, I hope you realize it and help yourself out of that line of thinking. This community already suffers from having TERFs as well as its share of racism. I hope we–as a community–recognize bigotry when it appears and call it out appropriately. Hospitality is a key virtue to Gaelic Polytheism, and one cannot show hospitality while harboring any type of bigotry in them.

So in short: this community does need more people of varying backgrounds, opinions, and talents. It doesn’t just need scholars and priests. This community is built up of Gaelic Polytheists of varying levels of religious intensity, varying levels of knowledge, varying levels of experience.

And you know what? That’s beautiful.

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One thought on “Thoughts on Community

  1. Pingback: Clergy/Laity & Community-Building | The Lefthander's Path

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