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Is TikTok turning your daughter into a child-sacrificing, sexual-abusing, self-mutilating leftist witch? The Federalist thinks so

Parents, watch out! The video-based social media app TikTok isn’t just entertaining your young daughters with amateur videos featuring dancing and lip-sync and humor that will make anyone older than 25 feel very ancient indeed; it’s also, the Federalist warns, enabling kids to “‘dabble in the occult from their phones.”

In an article on the Federalist earlier this week, concerned citizen Taylor J. Anderson describes the rise of #WitchTok,a popular TikTok hashtag that has had something in the area of 20 billion views, which to be honest does sound like a lot.

Taking his cues from a recent Washington Post article about a “spellcasting … podcasting” teen witch, Anderson reports glumly that

One can find thousands of videos on potions, tea leaf and tarot card readings, pendulum boards, astral projection, magic charms, wands, crystals, automatic writing, channeling, and spellcasting. These occultic practices, which would have been much more fringe and less accessible in previous generations, are now highly accessible and even trending for Gen Z, thanks in part to the rise of postmodernism.

I’m not sure it takes “postmodernism” or TikTok to get teenagers interested in the Occult; the Ouija board, a party game disguised as a portal to the underworld, dates back to the 1890s. But it is clear that witchcraft is having a bit of a moment. As Anderson notes,

Wicca, one of the more organized of the neopagan traditions, has seen its number of adherents multiply by more than 40 times just from 1990 to 2008.

The teen witch craze has created a massive market for witchy accoutrements, among them, Anderson notes, “an abundance of crystals, pendulums, tarot cards, hoodoo oil, and even witch starter kits.” And TikTok, he argues,

is becoming the most effective virtual platform for converting young religiously frustrated individuals into liberated neopagan consumers.

Online witchcraft practitioners and the consumer sector are both paying close attention to this radical development. Parents should too.

Anderson is hardly the first commenter to point out the growing appeal of both witchcraft and #WitchTok; Wired was writing about the trend more than a year ago.

And this isn’t even the first time that The Federalist has noticed #WitchTok either: in a post earlier this month, inspired by the same WaPo teen witch profile that caught Anderson’s eye, Federalist Executive Editor Joy Pullmann tracked what she sees as “the Demonic energy behind the left’s culture war.”

Pullmann — who, you may recall, wrote a recent Federalist post seriously arguing that dying of COVID is good, actually — warns that TikTok-enabled witchcraft propaganda is helping to provide a sort of dark energy to the left’s battles for abortion and trans rights.

The WaPo article also claims that contemporary witches, mediums, and other would-be consorters with false gods and demons strongly support leftist politics. The most prominently mentioned are no surprise to anyone paying attention: child sacrifice, child mutilation, ritual self-mutilation, and sexual abuse. Or, in other words, abortion and LGBT activism. …

It’s not really a surprise that a self-described witch supports child sacrifice, although it is a bit surprising that the Post and the witch are so open about this. Why that is, let’s leave open for speculation.

Could it be … SATAN?

In one of many digressions from her overall argument, Pullmann suggests that

the use of plural pronouns for a single individual is eerie considered in light of one of the Bible’s depictions of Christ casting out demons. When addressed, that possessed man also spoke of himself in the plural: “My name is Legion, for we are many.”

Pullmann’s solution to all these “eerie” problems? We don’t have to speculate, because she says it directly: Jesus Christ.

She doesn’t mean the “meek shall inherit the earth” Jesus, but rather the “I came not to bring peace, but a sword” guy.

The left’s culture war is in fact a religious war. Among other things, that means our politics and culture are only going to get weirder and more clarifying, folks. Best get your armor on and your spiritual swords sharpened.

The debate will certainly get weirder as long as Pullmann keeps writing these unhinged rants.

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Alan Robertshaw
15 days ago

the use of plural pronouns for a single individual is eerie

If they’re that up on The Bible then they should know about Elohim.

Last edited 15 days ago by Alan Robertshaw
MexicanHotChocolate
MexicanHotChocolate
15 days ago

According to the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the Federalists are bunch of whiny gits who’ll be the first against the wall when the revolution comes. Due to an accident, an edition of the Guide fell through a wormhole and travled back through time from the far future. The entry on the Federalists reads, “The Federalists were a bunch of whiny gits who the first against the wall when the revolution came.”

jsrtheta
jsrtheta
15 days ago

Whenever righties get their dander up about something, you can tell immediately that they have no idea what they’re talking about. It’s a hallmark of the Right in general to be constantly at war with things that don’t exist.

I remember the occult was a thing when I was in high school in the ’60s, and it’s been a thing for certain people (high school kids, mostly) forever. Though this is the first I have heard that witches and such belong to the political Left. Wasn’t Hitler fascinated by the occult?

Lumipuna
Lumipuna
15 days ago

Alan – I suppose you mean elohe/elohim.

Elaine The Witch
Elaine The Witch
15 days ago

I think the rise of Wicca is a lot of people feeling the need to sate their spiritual hunger to be connected to nature and spirituality along with people realizing how fucked up Christianity actually is.

Lumipuna
Lumipuna
15 days ago

Wicca, one of the more organized of the neopagan traditions, has seen its number of adherents multiply by more than 40 times just from 1990 to 2008.

Ironically, in 2001 one small Wiccan organization in Finland sought recognition as a religious community, and was denied on the basis of not being sufficiently organized. That is to say, Finnish law expects religious communities to operate like Christian churches.

A Finnish study from 2008 estimated the number of practicing Wiccans to be about 1000, in a country of 5 million. IDK how this relates to other types of neopaganism, but none of it is very mainstream here.

Kat, ambassador, feminist revolution (in exile)
Kat, ambassador, feminist revolution (in exile)
15 days ago

26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

Genesis 1:26, King James Version

Ninjaed by Alan, don’t care, won’t care, can’t make me care.

The Dark Avenger
The Dark Avenger
15 days ago

If your kid kills you because of something they saw on Tik-Tok, you probably weren’t a great parent in the first place.

Lizzie
Lizzie
15 days ago

@Elaine the witch
I read a recent article by Charlotte Wood (writer) who spent many, many hours in church as a child. This paragraph jumped out for me:

“The Bible itself offered other contradictory gifts to the unformed creative mind – especially if you were a girl. From where I sat half-listening, half daydreaming, the Bible was filled with angry fathers and their favoured or exiled sons. Sons and brothers were endlessly loved, sacrificed, envied, murdered, welcomed home, cast out; they were slavish or indolent, saviours or sinners. Family dramas were constant, violent, entirely male. There were no stories of sisters fighting or being saved. No baby girls were laid in baskets in the rushes. No daughters grew up to interpret pharaohs’ dreams. Girl children appeared not to exist in ancient times. Women sometimes did, but only when they were wrong, and the cause of catastrophe. There was Eve, obviously. Lot’s wife disobediently “looked behind her” and turned into a pillar of salt (I could never get over this: just for looking? And what was a pillar of salt?). Other names became midday movie emblems of sexy evil-doing: Delilah, Salome. Other, nameless women were always being stoned to death for adultery, or somehow punished for not having the right number of children (well: sons). The only women with any clear identity at all seemed to be the Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene, but they were both infatuated with Jesus, and spent their lives doing exactly as he told them.“

As a child and then as an adult I personally never felt that the bible and any subsequent exposure I had to any religious teaching had anything to offer to me as a woman, or that it included or valued women in any authentic way.

It is not surprising to me that witchy beliefs that recognise the existence of women, and respect their value and humanity, should become more and more popular now that it is so much easier, thanks to the inter webs, to communicate directly with other like-minded people.

Here’s the article in case anyone wants to read more: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2020/oct/23/confessions-of-an-atheist-writer-charlotte-wood-on-catholicism-and-the-art-instinct

Dalillama
15 days ago

Wicca, one of the more organized of the neopagan traditions, has seen its number of adherents multiply by more than 40 times just from 1990 to 2008.

While this may be true, this is much like Dothraki or Klingon being the fastest growing language: there were only 8000 practicing Wiccans in answering polls in the US in 1990, so 40 times that is still not many people at all.

CrawlingKingSnake
CrawlingKingSnake
15 days ago

The Federalist is the exact point where stupidity and evil are indistinguishable. They – and anyone who regularly exposes themselves to it – are humans who will never in their one lifetime be other than mildly toxic. Unless in mass.

Elaine The Witch
Elaine The Witch
15 days ago

@Lizzie

Plus crystals are way prettier then crosses, Just saying.

Lollypop
Lollypop
15 days ago

Yeah I remember the occult craze back in secondary school in the early 2000s. Its barely new for tweens and teens to love this stuff.

My partner grew up often visiting Boscastle (home of the witch’s museum) where there is an extremely high concentration of occultish witchy shops. One day he overheard one of the owners putting in a phone order for bulk buys of crystal balls, scrying mirrors, rune stones and that, which he said broke the illusion a bit!

Magnesium
Magnesium
15 days ago

Damn, they’re recycling a classic with this one. The satanic panic just goes on forever, I guess.

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ lollypop

There’s a new museum of witchcraft and magic in Falmouth now too. It’s quite small; but they have some good stuff.

As for magic supplies, a local hedgewitch here was the first to register with HMRC, so she could get the VAT back on cauldrons and the like. As the Revenue were quite fine with that a lot of people have done it now.

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ jsrtheta

Wasn’t Hitler fascinated by the occult?

He was more into the folk history and mythology of the ‘Teutonic’ people rather than the occult stuff. That was more Himmler and his acolytes.

During the War MI6 and SOE tried to take advantage of that. They had astrologers who would advise on what the more mystically minded senior Nazis might be minded to do based on their known beliefs. They also produced a fake old pamphlet called “Nostradamus predicts the course of the war”. That ‘predicted’ all the early German victories, but then warned of doom later on. They then arranged for that to be planted in certain esoteric bookshops they knew the Nazis frequented.

The Ahnenerbe also dabbled in that sort of thing. Although it was the Thule-Gesellschaft that were really into it.

Last edited 14 days ago by Alan Robertshaw
epitome of incomrepehensibility

Yeah I remember the occult craze back in secondary school in the early 2000s. Its barely new for tweens and teens to love this stuff.

Same! Also, what’s a “witch starter kit”? (Does it have a magic wand? I want a magic wand.)

Lollypop
Lollypop
14 days ago

@alan

Ooo interesting! I’ll have to get down their to have a look.

I know the Boscastle one changed ownership fairly recently. Their new owners seen very social media savvy, absolutely smashing it on Instagram (mind you, it appears from this article they got into it at the right time!)

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ lollypop

I should get up there some time. Just Boscastle is a bit “up country” for me. I’m further west. That’s nice though as there’s some amazing old stuff this way; specially in West Penwith with all the cool stone circles. I made it a mission to check out every standing stone west of Truro. That included all the known and suspected ones; so I’ve probably also seen a lot of cow scratching posts.

I have a soft spot for this one, Dry Tree Menhir, because it’s next to all the satellite dishes at Goonhilly. I love how that area is just 4,500 years of people communicating with the heavens.

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Last edited 14 days ago by Alan Robertshaw
Karalora
Karalora
14 days ago

@epitome

I can’t tell to what extent you’re joking, but I can tell you that yes, some starter witch kits do include a wand (read: small stick). You don’t wave it and make things float or catch fire, though. It’s a tool for focusing and directing “energy” (read: whatever it is that makes magic happen).

More commonly, starter witch kits include a few tealights or other small candles, a tiny bottle of scented oil, some incense sticks (sandalwood is popular) and a holder, a sampling of crystals/tumbled stones, a flimsy folded cloth to spread out and put stuff on, and maybe a pamphlet of instructions for a few basic spells. Always emphasizing, of course, that the magic is in you, not the tools.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
14 days ago

child sacrifice, child mutilation, ritual self-mutilation, and sexual abuse. Or, in other words, abortion and LGBT activism. …

Ah, the old blood libel. Now with added misogyny and homophobia!

Among other things, that means our politics and culture are only going to get weirder and more clarifying, folks. 

Remind me again, which group of people is eating horse paste and promoting antivaxx/5G woo? Which group is currently holding vigil at Dealey Plaza, waiting for JFK Jr. to pop his head out, signalling six more weeks of democracy (or whatever he’s supposed to do, I can’t keep up with QAnon’s goalposts)?

Watch who you’re calling weird, pal.

Last edited 14 days ago by Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Some Chick
Some Chick
14 days ago

Blood libel and witch hunts, what century are we in again?
Also, tell me you hate the idea of girls and women thinking for themselves without saying you hate the idea of girls and women thinking for themselves.

LouCPurr
LouCPurr
14 days ago

The Duggars and their ilk exist, but it’s the pagans that are the weirdoes?
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Masse_Mysteria
Masse_Mysteria
14 days ago

is becoming the most effective virtual platform for converting young religiously frustrated individuals into liberated neopagan consumers.

Wasn’t it way better back in the olden days when anyone frustrated with religion had to just suck it up because there were no alternatives? It’s not like there are any legit reasons to be frustrated with religions, right, so anyone who’s frustrated is just immature and hasn’t seen the light or some such.

@Lumipuna

Ironically, in 2001 one small Wiccan organization in Finland sought recognition as a religious community, and was denied on the basis of not being sufficiently organized. That is to say, Finnish law expects religious communities to operate like Christian churches.

I don’t really know much about this (since it’s one of those famous “I read a book about this once” things), but as far as I have understood, the law* is worded to guarantee a community’s right to private, communal and public activities, and one of the points that caused the rejection was that they’d judged that Wiccans didn’t have the communal or public side, just the private, in which case they supposedly wouldn’t need an official status.

I may have misunderstood this and don’t mean to endorse the current situation in any case, but I do feel like it’s less about having to operate like Christian churches and more about traditions of organised religion in general (we have had Jewish and Muslim folks in Finland for a long time).

*Worth to note that the current law on religious freedom is from 2003, but I think I’ve heard Wiccans have sough recognition more than once.

Last edited 14 days ago by Masse_Mysteria
Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

A lot of schools in Cornwall teach about paganism in RE lessons; and there is one pagan state school here.

That caught the ire of the Daily Mail; but when they asked the local bishopric for comment they were pretty cool about it.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cornwall-17804422

Surplus to Requirements
Surplus to Requirements
14 days ago

Is there any way I can force the Ontario government to shape up or ship out? Beyond voting “anything but Tory” in 2023, obviously.

They are failing on multiple fronts (hardly surprising with a pack of low-tar filtered Extra Mild Trump Lights in charge). Most notably:

  1. The power here is back to going off for 10-20 minutes every few days. The local power company blames the provincial distributor each time. If they’re not just brazenly lying to evade responsibility for their own cack-handed incompetence, then there’s been a sharp drop about a month ago in the provincial grid’s quality-of-service, which it would be the government’s responsibility to correct. But a month has passed and they’ve clearly done nothing to restore the status quo ante in grid reliability.
  2. The virus count is ballooning again, after spending all of the summer and then the month of September bumping around in the low three digits. Obviously there’s something that was being done right until October that isn’t being done right anymore, and the only things large enough to affect the whole province systematically are the provincial government, Bell, and Rogers. And I don’t see how either of the latter could be causing this. So, it must be the provincial government dropping the ball somewhere.

The ridiculous thing is that the virus shouldn’t be able to resurge like that anymore, now that virtually the whole population has been vaccinated! I want things to return to normal. I want it to be safe to go to the cinema, or a restaurant, or the freaking hairdresser again! Or even the damn dentist. This return to a safe normality keeps receding in front of me. First it was supposed to be a few months of masks and distancing and nonessential stuff being closed, and the virus wouldn’t be able to spread enough not to peter out. Then it was supposed to be we all get vaccinated and then it goes away. Every time, the powers that be keep letting me, indeed all of us, down. When will they step up and actually keep a goddamn promise to someone other than a giant megacorp or some member of the superrich for once?

Elaine The Witch
Elaine The Witch
14 days ago

I’m a goth so most of the people I personally hang out with have some kind of alternative style. Pretty big portion of them are practicing wicca or witchcraft. I had one experience when performing a spell from when I was a teenager and then something actually happened and I stopped fucking with that shit real fast.

Then a while back when I had roommates, one of them did a cleansing spell for our apartment because we all were having nightmares and were really stressed about the world. She did it in a way that all the negative energy or spirits would be pushed out the windows. well the big window in our living room had all of these plants on the window seal, on the fire escape, planter box, and on the end tables on either end of our couch. all of them died, all of them. at once. we woke up the next day and they were all dead when the day before it was thriving. Do you know how hard it is to kill Aloe? Succulents are like the terminators of planets. they just keep going. dead. instantly. all of them dead because we pushed the bad energy out of the window they were on.

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ surplus

The ridiculous thing is that the virus shouldn’t be able to resurge like that anymore

Unfortunately that’s just in the nature of viruses (viri?). They mutate, or an event, or just how we behave socially, can create a hotspot.

But the reality is covid is here to stay. It’s just how we as a society adapt to that.

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-00396-2

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
14 days ago

I am very ashamed of my country today.

Elaine The Witch
Elaine The Witch
14 days ago

@Alan

Kind of like the flu. Get your flu shot ever year, keep your space clean, wash your hands, cough into your sleeve. All of that.

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ elaine

Yeah. It’s that idea that all pandemics end ‘medically’ or ‘socially’.

So with smallpox for example, that was a medical ending. It’s all but non existent now thanks to medical intervention. Still glad I’ve had my jab though.

But with most pandemics it’s just when a sort of status quo is established, and society learns to live with it, after assessing the risks and weighing the impact of precautions versus risk posed by the disease.

https://www.ft.com/content/4eabdc7a-f8e1-48d5-9592-05441493f652

Elaine The Witch
Elaine The Witch
14 days ago

@Alan

I’m just saying that prepandemic I got my flu shot every year. Went about my day normally. eating at restaurant with people. going to school, not wearing a mask, going to the movies full of people, going to hair dressers, going to parks, pools, gyms, dates. all of that. Never got the flu before because I shower everyday and wash my hands every time I come in from the outdoors or before I eat. Like, get the flu shot, do basic hygiene things, sneeze and cough into your sleeve. You’ll be fine. The problem I have come to figure out is that a lot of people don’t do these things. A lot of people (cough cough men) don’t even wash their hands after using the bathroom. Don’t know if people don’t care or if they are just not taught this stuff as a child like I was.

Like I worked at a sandwich shop as one of my jobs for a couple of years. there were people that came in to eat a hand held food with actually dirty, like I can see their hands are black and brown with dirty and filth to eat this sandwich their gonna hold with those hands and put in their mouths, and none of them washed their hands before eating it because when I brought them their food their hands were still that filthy and they didn’t get up to wash.

I still see things about how covid isn’t any worse then the flu, well the flu also kills people and is contagious so even if that’s true, you should treat it like the fucking flu, and not be gross and actually take care of yourself and surprise surprise you are far less likely to get sick.

I worked outside of the house all through covid and lock down and all of that because I counted as an essential worker. I had to handle peoples cards and money, made physically contact over and over with them. You know what I did? I wore my mask, I washed my hands when I could, and I did this all before there was a vaccine and able to get vaccinated and I didn’t get covid. Despite living in a republican state of smallville usa where people don’t wash their hands or wear mask or anything apparently and I didn’t get covid because I took care of myself. It was scary yeah, but this is a virus right. it’s germs. it’s contagious and it’s deadly and it leaves people permanently disabled or having breathing problems the rest of their lives. but it’s not a poising or something right. you have a way to fight it before it even gets into your body and it’s by doing really simple shit.

  1. wear a mask.
  2. wear a clean mask, dispose of the mask every time your done wearing if it’s a throw away or wash it after using it once if it’s a reusable. Do no reuse a mask you have already worn. Think of it like a bandais. you don’t peal that shit off and then put the same gooie blood bandaid back on the cut later.
  3. Wash your hands after coming inside from out doors, after you use the bathroom, and before you eat every time.
  4. Wash your hands after touching another human in anyway. we’re gross.
  5. take a shower everyday.
  6. Take a shower after you get home from work and change your clothes before you sit down on any furniture or lay down in bed or anything.
  7. Cough and sneeze into your sleeve.
  8. Wash your clothes, bedding, and towels ever week
  9. don’t put stuff you don’t know where it’s been in your mouth.
  10. Don’t put things that aren’t food in your mouth.
  11. Clip your nails
  12. if you have small children, clean off any surface they touch frequently because children don’t understand what germs are and they put everything in their mouth. I watched a 3 year old put her tongue on the counter near the register I worked at and drag it back and forth over the counter that everyone touches because her dad stopped watching her for a second and she started licking things for no reason.

This concludes my advice to Surplus on how to be safe in the world. Basically don’t be gross, do basic shit. you’ll be okay.

Lollypop
Lollypop
14 days ago

@Alan

That is awesome. I stmbled across a stone circle I didn’t know about recently, it was after the autumn solstice and full of wreaths and little offerings like muscle shells. Super cool!

I do find so much witch/pagan beliefs and rituals really compelling and attractive, although do raise eyebrows at the fact so much of Wicca’s inception seemed to be middle aged men coming up with magical reasons that young women should sleep with them. I think Cecil Willamson even suggested Gerald Gardner was something of a wrong un for it (although that may be rumour).

Moggie
Moggie
14 days ago

@VP:

I am very ashamed of my country today.

I’ve decided to stay away from twitter for the next few days, at least. It’ll be ugly.

Contrapangloss
Contrapangloss
14 days ago

@VP

I think I know what you refer to, and same. I don’t have words.

Dalillama
14 days ago

@Lollypop
Gardner was most definitely a wrong ‘un, thr only question is just how wrong he got.

Buttercup Q. Skullpants
Buttercup Q. Skullpants
14 days ago

America is deeply broken. Militarized and racist, all the way down.

Lumipuna
Lumipuna
14 days ago

Masse_Mysteria wrote:

I may have misunderstood this and don’t mean to endorse the current situation in any case, but I do feel like it’s less about having to operate like Christian churches and more about traditions of organised religion in general (we have had Jewish and Muslim folks in Finland for a long time).

My original comment on this was snide and a bit oversimplified. I’d say Judaism and Islam (and generally Abrahamic faiths) are functionally close enough to Christianity that they have been able to relatively easily fit into the traditional Western concept of religious community, albeit largely as an afterthought.

Certainly, a few small non-Abrahamic faith communities have been recently recognized in Finland, though those seem like rare exceptions.

Alan wrote:

A lot of schools in Cornwall teach about paganism in RE lessons; and there is one pagan state school here.

By paganism, I presume you mean Wicca? Or some Cornish cultural revival thing?

I get that teaching “about” paganism can cover a variety of different traditions. However, if that one school is committed to actively supporting their students’ pagan upbringing and heritage, they probably need to be a bit more specific on what they support.

In Finland, schools aren’t usually religious as such (even the few private schools we have here), but RE lessons are held separately for groups of students from different religious backgrounds, with some tailoring to support acculturation into the students’ “own” religious culture, history, ritual and doctrine. If Wicca were officially recognized, then in principle Wiccan parents could demand separate Wiccan RE study groups, though it’d be logistically difficult.

Then again, there was this administrative opinion that Wicca doesn’t have a coherent enough doctrine to teach.

hammerofglass
hammerofglass
14 days ago

I love how they’re still talking about “the rise of postmodernism” like it’s a new thing, and not something that had it’s heyday sixty years ago and was out of vogue by the 90’s.

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ lumipuna

By paganism, I presume you mean Wicca? Or some Cornish cultural revival thing?

I’m not sure what the syllabus is. It’s unlikely to be Wicca though; that’s not really a thing down here (although I’m sure all the witchcraft shops do a roaring trade with visiting ones.)

There is a huge pagan vibe in Cornwall. Plenty of self identified pagans. But even those who consider themselves non religious, or hold other faiths, still have a lot of paganish sensibilities. But Cornish paganism (and it’s not a homogenous thing, there’s lots of variations) is more that general connection with the land thing, with a few local supernatural beings thrown in.

So Cornwall is ‘The land of the Goddess‘ but there’s also lots of other aspects that blur the line between religious belief, folk tradition, and just good old fashion having fun.

Like, I suspect most people know that the Knockers are probably just the creaking of mine supports before they collapse. That doesn’t stop even office workers in the towns though leaving them their pasty crusts; just to keep in with them.

It’s hard to explain; you have to experience it really. But it is one of the reasons I moved here; you can sort of feel the magic coming up through your feet.

At a meeting of west Cornwall’s pagans, a Cornish speaker told me a story to illustrate the complex web of belief and identity. When he was a boy, his grandfather had taken him to the top of Carn Brea, one of the hills believed to have been significant in prehistory. The old man grabbed his hand and thrust it into the soil. “Feel that, boy,” he said, “that’s the beating heart of Cornwall. But don’t you go telling Grandma – she thinks I’m a good Methodist.”

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/apr/26/survival-of-cornish-identity-cornwall-separate-place

Last edited 14 days ago by Alan Robertshaw
Gerald Fnord
Gerald Fnord
14 days ago

Yup, ashamed, I’ll be more when the young man in question is feted and celebrated by the morally brain-dead…and quite possibly run for office.

jsrtheta:
I’m pretty sure the Federalist is staffed by people who will be eager to explain to you that Hitler was a Leftist. I guess that this is superior to that other part of our modern conservative coalition who’ll deny that vociferously because they approve of him and his, but scant comfort to me.

Masse Mysteria and Lumipuna:
Would you know if the shamanic religion[s?] of the Sami people has/have official recognition? Thank-you

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
14 days ago

@ Alan

You’re making me want to find my copy of Charles de Lint’s The Little Country.

Lumipuna
Lumipuna
14 days ago

Alan – Thanks.

Gerald wrote:

Would you know if the shamanic religion[s?] of the Sami people has/have official recognition?

No, not in Finland or Russia at least, I think. Probably not in Norway or Sweden either.

I understand that the practical situation is very much like what Alan described for Cornwall – that there’s not so much a whole surviving religion, as folk tradition and cultural heritage surviving alongside Christianity. Connection to land is said to be an overarching theme in Sami cultural conservation, as with other indigenous peoples.

There are said to be a few modern noaid, or shamans, but they keep a low profile so further information would be hard for outsiders to come by. Some individual aspects of the tradition, such as construction of shaman drums, have been revived more openly. Very few drums survive from the historical Christian conversion era, and Sami institutions are currently seeking to repatriate them from foreign museums. (I heard there’s one in the British Looteum, though the current controversy is about returning one from Denmark.)

Nowadays there’s demand to protect some of the more well known Sami cultural sites from tourism. The less known ones are generally kept in secret, and some are said to be in active use as sieidd, or sacrificial sites.

Surplus to Requirements
Surplus to Requirements
14 days ago

@Alan Robertshaw:

But the reality is covid is here to stay.

No. I cannot allow that. I cannot live the rest of my life without even the hope of being able to go out and socialize normally some day.

You will go back and fix this.

Alan Robertshaw
14 days ago

@ Vicki P

Ooh thanks for the recommend there. I’m guessing a story about cosmic horror in Mousehole (or ‘Mowzal’ if you want to be Cornish) is someone trying to park.

@ Lumpuna

Don’t get me started on the interface between paganish and christianity here; it’s a fascinating topic. From the C6th to the present day. I can bang on about it for hours 🙂

But instead…one of my first post lockdown outings was to see a bunch of locally produced films. The linked one was really intriguing. But touches on the pagan background down here. I really like the film; but CW for domestic violence.

Elaine The Witch
Elaine The Witch
14 days ago

@ surplus

Just wash your hands and don’t be gross you’ll be fine. Alan doesn’t have the power to stop covid. Get your yearly covid booster shot and accept that you have to take the same risk with covid as you do the flu

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
14 days ago

@ Alan

No spoilers, but the proper pronunciation of “Mousehole” does indeed come up at one point.

Full Metal Ox
14 days ago

@Alan Robertshaw:

Would I offend Cornish people by applying the term”Mowzal” to Disney World?

bumblebug
bumblebug
14 days ago

@Elaine:
I do just want to comment that hand washing (as important it is for general health) is nowhere near the most important preventative measure against covid. From what I understand, research has shown that airborne transmission accounts for pretty much all cases of covid.

As an example, I have a doctor friend who has been particularly careful. They caught covid by eating lunch inside an empty room in their practice simply because a nurse who was asymptomatic had eaten lunch in there several hours previously (while the room was also empty). This disease is particularly transmissible – significantly more so than the flu.

That is not to say that you shouldn’t take preventative measures. But even with masking, washing hands, and general hygiene you can still get covid. And your chances are slightly higher than the flu. Just a reminder that not everyone who gets covid does so because they are lax about precautions.

@Surplus:
The spike in cases you are seeing is likely due to pandemic fatigue (people are sick of the pandemic and are relaxing their own precautions) and the fact that winter is approaching. With cold weather people spend more time inside and are more likely to transmit disease. There is really nothing the government can do short of another lockdown.

This is something that everyone needs to accept. The sooner we, as a species, get over our collective temper tantrum about being “done” with the pandemic, the sooner we can employ common sense measures to minimize risk and get back to as normal of a life as we can with covid around.

Surplus to Requirements
Surplus to Requirements
14 days ago

@bumblebug:

But even with masking, washing hands, and general hygiene you can still get covid

Precisely my point. The only surefire way to avoid it is to avoid people, or at least to avoid spending time indoors other than alone at your own home.

At the same time, avoiding it is imperative. It is far worse than the flu. The (normal seasonal) flu doesn’t kill healthy adults and there’s no such thing as months of debilitating “long flu” and a risk of permanently reduced lung function with flu. COVID is not something that can be permitted and tolerated the way seasonal flu is!

Until COVID has been properly dealt with, anyone who goes to a cinema, or an indoor gym, or so much as gets their hair done might find themselves dead or crippled for life. Anyone, young or old, healthy or infirm. The risk is higher for the old and/or infirm, but it is not near-zero for the young and healthy the way it is for regular old flu.

Needless to say, this is not an acceptable state of affairs. Indeed if allowed to continue for much longer it is likely to destroy civilization. We can’t go indefinitely without spending time indoors away from home, and at the same time, anyone who does so rolls the dice each time and if they do it enough times it’s guaranteed they’ll eventually come up snake eyes. This is an existential threat, a back-to-the-stone-age level catastrophe if not dealt with promptly, if everyone who tries to maintain business as usual will have bouts of severe, debilitating illness, and sooner or later get killed or permanently incapacitated. Civilization cannot indefinitely endure such a state of affairs: necessary work will not get done, for lack of workers as the ones who are sufficiently non-risk-averse to do it get picked off one by one, and eventually everything will crumble and come crashing down. The ongoing supply chain problems, inflation, and volatility are just the beginning.

So what are we going to do about it?