Pagan Prosperity Gospel

There’s this rhetoric in certain corners of the Pagan/polytheist web that really bothers me. Originally I wasn’t going to say anything about it, but now I’m angry enough that I’m saying “Fuck that!” and I’m speaking out, because bullshit should be used to fertilize fields, not flung around willy nilly.

The subject I wish to discuss is what I and others on the net call the “Pagan Prosperity Gospel”.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the prosperity gospel, it’s a stance in certain Christian churches that says that if you have faith in God and give to Christian ministries, he will reward you with material wealth. The obvious issue with this brand of theology is that it implies that the poor obviously don’t have enough faith or, well, they’d be rich, of course!

Of course, it’s just this weird Christian thing and many other Christian leaders have denounced it as the bullshit it is, right? Surely there aren’t Pagans and polytheists advocating the exact same thing, right?

Well, you see, that’s the problem.

It seems like there’s a certain vocal group of people within our wonderful communities who think that if you were just devoted to your deities enough, if you just gave them 100% of your time and attention, if you just worked that much harder for them, you would be showered with all kinds of blessings and things would be wonderful.

In a word: NO.

In so many words:

Seriously, the fuck is this bullshit? How is this not spitting on every single polytheist from antiquity to today who sweat and bleed for their deities but are poor as dirt? How is that not ignoring the many, many other factors that contribute to poverty? How is that not classist as fuck?

No no no no no!

We do not need this in our traditions. If the majority of Christians denounce this as bullshit, we seriously don’t need it. We don’t need to take their bullshit, we have enough of our own.

2 thoughts on “Pagan Prosperity Gospel

  1. I recall when his crap began being bandied about in New Age groups — it drove me completely mad back then. We had a long-time acquaintance who SO bought into it — all the “manifest bounty” bullshit. When she bankrupted herself, lost her job and had to move back in with relatives, she STILL went on about how she just hadn’t done it ‘right’!

  2. I think of it more as a New Age thing, but of course the division between “pagan” and newage (rhymes with sewage) is a blurry one. (The Secret, ugh!) It’s just American hyper-individualism with a pseudo-spiritual facade. I think a social justice perspective is always important to keep in mind, even if it’s not your focus in terms of the work you do (or what your specific ideology entails) Not usually as much of an issue with polytheists & recons, but I did come across a faction of Gaelic Traditionalists who believe in a pact that the Irish had with the Tuath De Danaan, and that breaking it resulting (in part) in the tragedies of Irish history. Now that is seriously messed up- hell, it’s racist!

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