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I was wondering if any of my friends here at Neopagan have found that some claim Paganism as their religion just because they think it's cool or hip. I know that there was a time when being a Christian was the in-thing to do, or being Buddhist/Hindu/Toaist, and so on. So I was wondering if this has been something you've run into or not.

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Well, I have ran into that problem, and I've also been accused of being a "fake" by some pure wiccans since my quest took me away from that direction and led to my searching for answers in a multitude of places.
Yes I get it alot. Im a nurse and working with the general public for over 22 years Ive decided that religion is generally just an excuse for most - do what you want monday to saturday and pray on sonday. What I like most about the pagan religion - those Ive met anyway is that they try to practice and generally dont preach unless you ask first. Im what you could consider a Hedge and eclectic in that Im continually studying and have found my path to be both a wild ride and enlightening. Most of my studies are solitary but I enjoy every minute of it. I guess its all about whats in your heart and soul in the end

People are drawn into Paganism thru different reasons. Many fall away and many educate themselves and delve deeper.I think the best approach is to be gracious towards them.Many come to escape feeling judged  by certain other religious beliefs which was one of the reasons why I found my path.The more paganism becomes more visible the easier mentors will available. 

I'm with you on that.  I see a lot of youngsters come to big Pagan events, who clearly don't know how to behave and haven't even done any serious reading--they've just been playing role-playing games or stuff.  But most of them move on.  The few that stay, do so because they discovered that there was something deeper that really drew them.

And that's fine.  People need to do some exploring in order to find their way.  An old friend of mine once said that the Pagan scene attracts several types of people:

 - thrillseekers, who usually leave pretty soon and look elsewhere

 - rebellious youngsters, who are trying to upset their parents and/or society, or
   who are in reactance against their parents' religion--they tend to fall away

 - explorers, who may stay or not depending on whether it's the right path for them

 - curiosity-seekers, who also usually move along after they see enough to become bored

 - "buddy Pagans" who follow their friends into it (they're usually not really very spiritual
    or religious themselves, but they often find the Pagan social milieu agreeable and
    stick around for social reasons).  

 - true seekers, who hunger for closeness with the Old Gods and/or revere Mother Earth.

There's nothing wrong with any of these things:  everybody has their own process that they have to go through.  But sometimes the people who are just calling themselves Pagans or Witches out of defiance try to speak for the rest of us, and that's when it can be a problem.

I always tell people, "Read widely, keep your eyes open, and don't check your brains at the door."

I come across it rather often but I find they are easy enough to spot - I think its the old practice what you preach thing.  As for me Ive been on this particular path since teenage years and Im now over 40 (or so).  I know its the Path for me.  I try to enlighten others if they ask but it can be a bit hard going - as it were.

I was reading a book when I came across my Goddess. Some people call me fake because that's how I found Nyx, but I believe it was fate. I believe that's how she wanted me to get in touch with her. About it being a fad...I don't know. I am the ONLY wiccan/Nyxist in my community It's pretty much a Christian town My family are atheist. I'm a wiccan/Nyxist and there is a family of Jehovah Witnesses. If you are anything but a Christian you are looked down upon. My friend said they wanted to do a ritual with me, but they would bring a negative energy to it, because I know they don't really believe...It's not anything I've run into.

Hello,Lindsey.

I can relate to isolation in a physical community..Live in a small town with a church on every street corner.                                                                                        Obviously it is beneficial to know other pagans for advice,but we must honor our own truth.

 I would hate to see Paganism become as rigid and dogmatic as the religions based on  rejection through intolerance. Not an accusation of Paganism,,just a warning.Stick to your guns and EMBRACE YOU TRUTH!!!

Have you tried meetup groups organizations on the web for people With common interests and who live within a certain area.

Nyx, also known as Nuit or Mother Night or the Star Goddess, has been speaking to people for as long as people have looked at the night sky.  The Deities can speak to us any way They want!  You are not alone.  

I don't hide my religion, but I don't go out of my way to talk about it.  I think most of my non-Pagan neighbors have figured it out, though!  Luckily for me, I live in a very diverse environment (Silicon Valley).  It's harder for people in small towns:  I used to live in one, and I didn't find out until I had moved away that there was another Pagan there, but I hadn't met them!  :-/

someone literally told me that they were gonna be pagan so they could be "more alternative" so definatley

Yes.  If you want to make local Pagan friends, there's a site called Meetup.com where you can enter your zip code and what you're interested in, and if there are any Meetup groups about that subject they will show you.  You have to tell them how far you're willing to travel.  Somebody told me that that site is the most common way for Pagans to meet each other these days.  Not sure if it's true.

I'm not posting the entire url here, because we're supposed to avoid posting the urls of rival sites:  Meetup isn't really a rival site, as it doesn't do online social stuff, but it's still social networking, sort of--just in real-life.

I really enjoy the ones local to me.  Not all areas have such groups, but many do.  You can always try that.

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