Ethical Paganism

In the book Paganism For Beginners by Althaea Sebastiani there are some general ethical guidelines that should be found amongst Pagans.

Honesty. Truth is not universal. We each shape our own reality to align with our opinions, experiences, and ideals. But you can do much to present yourself and your truth as openly and honestly as possible. When you give your word, mean it. Hold to your promises. Attend to your obligations. Your word should be as good and binding as a signed contract.

Courage. There is much in this world and in life that is uncertain. You will not always have the answers, and you will rarely feel prepared, but you can still try. You can do what you can in that moment and with what you have available to you. To try in the face of fear and the possibility of failure speaks to your character and strength.

Fidelity. It is been said that the only faith that exists in Paganism is in regard to your ability to be faithful. Loyalty to yourself, the Gods, your family members, and your values is how you maintain the bonds of community and demonstrate the nature of your character.

Discipline. The lack of inherent structure in Paganism requires you to develop the discipline to remain focused on growing, learning, and building strong relationships with the Gods, the land, and your ancestors. It is through consistent effort that you achieve results.

Hospitality. How you treat the beings with whom you share the Earth matters. It isn’t enough to acknowledge that the world is alive with spirits: You must act upon that knowledge, treating each other and these spirits with care and respect. Hospitality fosters good relationships and, by keeping the welfare of others at the forefront of your thoughts, encourages you to live your values.

Industriousness. In all things to which you apply yourself, your efforts should demonstrate sincerity and a commitment to seeing things through. When you are faced with obstacles, half-hearted effort cannot compete with earnest and diligent attempts to face the obstacles before you and achieve what you set out to accomplish.

Justice. As much as you hold yourself accountable for your actions and choices, Pagans believe that others should be held accountable for their own. Life may not always be fair, but that does not mean that we can’t strive to treat each other—and ourselves—fairly.

Peace. Although we each hold the capacity to do great harm and to do great good, it is your choice and your efforts to not do harm that underscore your desire to live in harmony with others and with the land. Peace is not the absence of conflict but the commitment to not instigate or entertain needless disruption.

Self-reliance. The ability to handle yourself in any given situation is a virtue that benefits you as much as it benefits others. Cultivating self-reliance forces you to be self-aware, taking stock of your strengths, weaknesses, and faults so you can address areas where you are lacking and further focus on your personal and spiritual growth. A self-reliant person is not just better able to help themselves but also more strongly positioned to help others.

Wisdom. The cultivation of wisdom is dependent upon a combination of knowledge and experience. Through your mistakes and successes, you learn and grow, uncovering insights into the everyday and into your spiritual practice that serve to inform future experiences.

Kindness. It is all too easy to be cruel and dismissive. But to see others for who they are, to acknowledge the sacred within them, and to treat them with kindness takes effort. It requires you to slow down, to be aware of your thoughts, and to be disciplined in your efforts to treat others with the respect and compassion they deserve.

Strength. Spiritual practice is not easy. You will be tested, and you will be broken so as to be remade. But in each instance, these trials serve not just to help you grow and be more of what we and the Gods need from us but also as reminders of just how strong you truly are. Strength is your ability to keep going when it would be so much easier to give up or to give in.

Open-mindedness. None of us can ever have all the answers, and we will all too often find that we were quite mistaken about something we felt very strongly about. It behooves you to learn to withhold judgment for a time and to remain open to new information. In this way, you leave yourself open to new discoveries, new friends, and new experiences that can change your life for the better.

These above ethical guidelines help to shape my interactions with the world.

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Published by Sister Abigail Hester (Willow)

As a child I loved everything to do with the outdoors and was even a part of the Boy Scouts. It was the Boy Scouts that taught me the importance of being prepared. As a teenager I lost my father to a brain aneurysm which sparked an even deeper interest in health and wellness. It was around this time that I found myself living with an herbalist and the rest is history. Willow has a Bachelor of Christian Website Design from Saint Luke Evangelical School of Biblical Studies, a Masters of Theology from Saint Luke Evangelical School of Biblical Studies, a Masters of Comparative Religion from Universal Life Church Seminary, a Masters of Metaphysical Healing from Universal Life Church Seminary, a Masters of Shamanism from Universal Life Church Seminary, and a Doctorate of Religious Humanities from the Educational Department of Universal Life Church International Headquarters. Willow has completed both Herbal Medicine: Nourishing Herbal Infusions – Drink Your Way To Health, Seven Rivers of Healing and Energy Healing: Shaman’s Circle: Earth Spirits and Guides courses at Wise Woman University. Willow is a Certified Biblical Health Coach (Biblical Health Institute), Certified Nutritional Consultant (Life Extension Center), Eat God’s Way Consultant (Life Extension Center), Raw Food Chef (Living in Live Food Chef Certification Program) and Herb Specialist (Natural Health School). Willow has been ordained into the ministry by Universal Life Church International HQ (2000). Willow has also been ordained as a Peace Keeper, a Peace Minister (MP) and a Healing Minister through Luntiang Aghama Natural Divine Arts Shrine Of Healing INC., Philippines. Willow is an Interfaith ChristoPagan Nun.

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