Pop Culture Paganism

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Pop culture Paganism is an umbrella term for the transformative use of media in Pagan customs and rituals. Pop culture Paganism covers a wide variety of activities, such as revering book or film characters as deities, using pop culture figures in religious rituals and media, practicing religions or worshiping deity pantheons depicted in pop culture media, or simply depicting traditional deities as they appear in pop culture media. The consumption and creation of fannish media such as fanfiction and fancrafts can also be an important part of a pop culture Pagan's practice.

Examples of practices and crafts

Pop culture magic

Godspousery

Godspousery is the act of engaging in an intimate relationship with one or more deities or spirits, be it courting or marrying them. Practitioners argue that there is some historical precedence for this, such as the vows taken by nuns or the rite of Hieros Gamos.[1] For PCPs, godspousery may take the form of marrying a fictional character who is seen as a guide or spirit, or marrying a traditional god that the practitioner sees embodied as a pop culture incarnation, for example Loki. Discussions of godspousery have always been associated by some kind of fandom wank, with some fans seeing godspouses as crazy or deluded, and making a mockery of their practice.

Specific Examples:

Fannish Tarot Cards

Main article: Tarot Cards

Many fan artists create sets of tarot cards as either a way to explore character meta or to practice their art skills. While the act of creating a fannish tarot set is a largely secular activity, several PCPs use fannish tarot cards as a part of their craft, either as a pop culture addition to a more traditional craft, or as an integral part to a pop-culture themed faith.

Examples of pop-culture themed tarot sets:

Controversy

Some more traditional Pagans don't see pop-culture paganism as a valid expression of paganism. Often this is because the faith has no root in ancient cultures, or that pop-culture pagans see divinity in archetypes rather than discrete deities. In addition, some question its validity because it make traditional Paganism, already a marginalized faith, look bad.

[Fabianzzz]

I, like many others on this sub, am of the opinion that pop-culture paganism is not actual paganism. It has no source in ancient cultures, and furthermore, it hurts the overall image of a religion already struggling for validity.[2]

[sacredblasphemies]

We're generally not too keen on pop culture Paganism here.

Our gods are real. This isn't a game. We don't get to make things up or use fictional gods.[3]

Most posts on pop culture paganism in /r/pagan are highly discouraged, and practitioners are often told to go elsewhere.

References

  1. Godspouses: The good, The bad, and The ugly by Moth, on Pagans and Witches, on 17th May 2018
  2. A discussion on popculture paganism... by Fabianzzz on reddit, posted April 25th 2018.
  3. A response by sacredblasphemies to Elder Scrolls Pop Culture Paganism by fargoniac, posted February 19th 2018