Pagan Leader – Within The Crosshairs

Being a leader isn’t as glamorous as it looks from the outside.

Isaac Bonewits Pagan Leader Design
Isaac Bonewits Pagan Leader Design

The Crane, the wolf, the bear and the boar,
No longer dwell upon these shores,
You say that the Goddess and God have gone,
Well I tell you they live on! – Damh The Bard

A long time ago in a galaxy not that far away Isaac Bonewits designed a logo for T-Shirts (and later other merchandise through his Cafe Press Store) especially for those brave or foolhardy souls who seek or are cast into a leadership role within the Pagan community. It has long been known that such is a thankless job. Pagans are hard on their leaders. They expect much from them and are all too often quick to turn their backs on them if they don’t deliver everything that is expected of them. I have long avoided being cast into such a role myself but these days it seems more and more I hear people trying to cast me into it much to my chagrin. It’s not that I don’t want to be of service to the community. As I have said in past blatherings, I do LOVE Pagans and want to see them work together rather than work against one another because I do think great things could be accomplished for the good of all if Pagans of all stripes would set aside their differences and focus on the areas where we can COEXIST with one another.


The thing I heard yesterday though was that once again someone has painted the leader target on me and said “Him! That guy over there is in charge of DFW Pagan Pride Day. Uh, NO! Here is who is in charge of DFW Pagan Pride Day. WE ARE as is stated on the FAQ page of the website and has been reiterated many times on the DFW Pagan Pride Day 2013 Facebook Page. If this thing is going to happen it is going to take an entire community to make it happen. Not just one poor soul who folks can point to and say, “Well, if that guy or gal is who is in charge then I don’t want anything to do with it.” or “If it doesn’t work it’s this person’s fault.” Nah! Not my thing people! I’m perfectly happy being the Promotional Coordinator and now Treasurer of the committee which is getting together and deciding how to run this thing on a regular basis but I did not sign up to put one of those leader target thingees on my back. I have enough on my agenda at this point in my life working a full time job plus overtime with a 38 mile commute each way through the middle of downtown Fort Worth to get to it. I also have a 13 year old daughter, a six year old son and a wife that I enjoy spending time with once in awhile. If I were retired, didn’t have the job to worry about and the kids were grown then things might be different but at this point in my life I am about as involved in the Pagan Community as I readily can be just doing my work with PPD, studying for my next degree within Sacred Fire Temple and doing my blogs and websites. Anything more would likely tip the scales between this side of the rubber room and the other.

Do Things From Your Soul
When You Do Things From Your Soul People Dig That Shit.

If you meander on over to the International Pagan Pride Project website… and click on the details link for Dallas Fort Worth Pagan Pride Day you will see Bryan Lankford listed as the Event Organizer(s) for this area’s PPD. That’s only part of the story. Bryan was the first to get his application in and we have discovered that the wheels of change at Pagan Pride Project website land turn VERY slowly. It took us 4 tries over the course of several months just to get them to update the link to our website and only recently were the Sponsors and Charities updated. But I do have my application in too and we will hopefully one fine day see that there are at least two organizers listed on the site there although we truly are run by a committee of volunteers who are in charge of several different aspects of the whole thing and we really do all get together, discuss and vote on things before moving forward on major decisions. If you check out Austin Pagan Pride Day’s event details you will see that they have no less than 3 Event Organizers listed.  IT’S NOT A ONE MAN OPERATION FOLKS!!! Thank you! 🙂

No matter which symbol you follow, If you respect mine, I’ll respect yours.

As I said last week. Be good to each other out there and have a Blessed Week!

16 Replies to “Pagan Leader – Within The Crosshairs”

  1. Don't be downhearted. Negative feedback is more valid than positive as it shows you what needs to be down rather than patting you on the back for what you've done well. Take what they've said and use it to set the foundations to the project.

    Reading between the lines I'm assuming that he's having a hard time finding people to join him in doing the groundwork. This is only natural as people won't join something until they can see what it is, perhaps he needs to set something up that can be modified and built on when interested parties sign on. It's hard to get people join a vague concept or idea.

    But now is the time for action! Those people who asked the hard questions know that the sacred earth alliance is out there now and they'll be watching! Time to get something created and not just a website – it's nice yes, but without any substance it's almost pointless…

    My advice (which I'm good at giving I know), is to keep going to various gatherings. Talk to people face to face. When you get interested people have a meeting with them and the others who have already joined the cause – don't wait until you hit a certain quota of pagan people because you may never get it! Work with who IS interested and more people will come. Wait and those who are interested will become disheartened and give up.

    And yeah, setting something up takes A LOT of time and commitment, but every little part that someone does adds to the greater whole! Even if it's just an idea, a supportive comment, mention in a blog, it ALL adds up! Sure you need people to get down and do the hard work of rule making etc. but don't just hang about waiting for these people to show up. If sacred earth alliance is supposed to be about including all pagans then include all of them! Don't just wait for the leaders to join, let anyone who is willing to help join and be part of it!

    Which actually raises the question which has just started alarm bells ringing in my head.

    Is Michael only wanting to talk to pagan leaders? Isn't that a little elitist? What I mean is this – is he only interested in talking to those people who are leaders of a group? If so that will cause issues as they won't have the time to commit, will have their own agendas and sends out the message that everyone else is unimportant!

    If you could pass on this onto Michael, I'd be interested to hear what he has to say on this.

    1. Oh, I'm not downhearted. The Gods are my pals, I shall not sweat it as one notable elder once uttered. 😉 I emailed Michael and asked him to chime in on this question. Hopefully we'll get to read his thoughts soon. Please, turn those alarm bells off, they'll give you a terrible headache! 😉

  2. I have to agree with Isadore on just about everything said above, my orginal attempt was to do something where those wanting to be involved in the early stages could actually have something to do with putting it all together rather than that of just one person or a small few, but as you correctly state, "they want to see something before they join", so I believe that we will have to put up a basic shell that can be modified and changed as we take on more folks and grow. All very valid points just never wanted folks to think another sandbox to come play in that they had nothing to do with creating, but I think if we make it clear it can and will be modified as we grow then perhaps we can reach with some initiation success, there is also positive feedback as well from several groups, not just negative or a better word might be cautious.

    I do not want to just talk to Pagan leaders, it's just that I hear so many Pagans complain about the Judeo/Christian world and the things that they do that I figured what better place to start than our on backyard!. After all, if we are not willing to be the change and do things better or differently than the folks that we want to complain about, then wants the point? By going to the Pagan community, and I see that in the broadest sense of the word, meaning anyone and everyone that is not Judeo/Christian than that's a big pool of people to talk with!

    1. Did you not get anyone to sign on with you?

      I sent a couple of my Dallas area friends in your direction

          1. And Emryk Graywolf, are you writing this basic shell by yourself or drawing upon those who have already approached you?

          2. The Heathen I contacted about this took it to her elders and they were not willing to be part of this group. Not 100% sure why but I get the feeling that it's got something to do with COG – she mentioned something about them saying they didn't want to have anything to do with COG or it's spin offs.

            The other one (I didn't know who had contacted you so checked up on both of them – been busy with some artwork and have been neglecting people a little) did contact you but now the situation seems a little… volatile there… and they didn't really want to go into details at this time.

            I guess you know about that better than I do!

          3. Actually I don\’t know about the volatility mentioned but I will say I can understand the Heathen\’s position of not wishing to be connected with CoG given their long term stance of being a Wiccan only organization but I don\’t know that what Emryk Graywolf proposed would necessarily be something I would consider a CoG spinoff. In any event, Emryk’s long bouts of silence on the subject and requiring a personal invitation each time he is asked to participate in this conversation, (such as the question you asked of him nearly a week ago now) is sending messages to me regarding his level of dedication to the project I am afraid.

          4. I'm not one for idle gossip but I think the volatility my other friend has stems from the same concerns you've just voiced.

  3. Oh I forgot to share with you something that a very wise and good friend of mine said about this.

    "Negative feedback is the best kind as it not only shows you where you need to focus your efforts but what's also important to people as if it wasn't important to them, they would have never have spoken about it"

    And a question to you Troy.

    From your first blog post it sounded like you were part of this project, but this post it sounds like you were just promoting it. Just to be clear, are you part of this project?

    1. Well at this point just about the only part I can be of this project is to promote it. The website hasn\’t launched yet and it is being worked on by someone else. The project itself is the brainchild of Emryk Graywolf who is my HP in Sacred Fire Temple. But at this, very early stage of development I don\’t know who one could actually consider to be \”a part\” of it. I will certainly support and help in any way that I can though.

      1. I thought Emryk Graywolf was looking for people to share views and opinions? You could help with that, after all through your PPD connections you are in contact with a diverse group of people, plus you have your own ideas.

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