Over the past couple of days I’ve been exchanging comments and thoughts with another blogger, but one whose author and focus are decidedly Christian. This all started as I was browsing the posts tagged Wicca in my WordPress Reader and came across an article with a couple of old videos about a minister’s views on Wicca. I’d seen the videos before, and they didn’t sit any easier on me than they had the first time I watched years ago. Couple that with some of the blogger’s comments, and I had to leave a reply of my own.
Now as far as Wicca – Christian conversations go, this one wasn’t that bad. The blogger was respectful, very detail-oriented and seemed to know his stuff, which is more than I can say for other Christians I’ve had this argument out with. I attempted to debunk the connection to Satanism, clarified that Wicca and witchcraft are two different things and several other inaccuracies in his argument, and he responded with his own understanding of things with passages from the bible.
In response to his bible verses specifically, I posted this:
. . . I cannot argue your quotes from your scripture without attacking your faith, so I won’t. I recognize and respect that you believe the bible to be holy. I, on the other hand, do not, and so here is an impasse, for you will use those words as a shield and I refuse to be baited. . .
Because of my own experiences years ago, when I became Wiccan I decided I would try my best to avoid attacking others’ tenants of faith, and in this case because he chose bible verses, this was a line I wasn’t willing to cross. It was a personal choice, and I know other Pagans who would not hesitate to jump in were they in my shoes.
His answer to my comments got me thinking though. He said:
. . . I respect your wish to not attack my religion, Ayslyn, but truth be told, you will have to in order to prove your case. I say this with much respect to you (please believe me), I sincerely pray that you do, because that is how I found the truth myself. . .
Is it ever an acceptable method, attacking someone else’s religion to prove or justify your own, even in a context such as this? Do you lower yourself and that which you represent if you do attack? If you don’t continue on though, the conversation stops right there, and so does any chance of reaching common understandings.
This is an interesting question for Wiccans. We are not a people given to converting others. We are not given to the notion that our faith is the one and only true way to the All. When we converse with others about religion, it is usually to defend ourselves and what we practice, to explain how we reached that point and why we are satisfied. We don’t need to prove other religions false because Wicca is not about the truth contained in a book; it’s about each individual’s truth.
So what do you think—is attacking another’s faith ever an acceptable thing to do?