And The Burning Times Continue Unabated

I have already addressed this on my liberal politics blog, The Second Beast, but I wanted to post here as well since this is a clear religious issue. A young woman named Kepari Leniata was recently tortured, branded and burned alive for allegedly practicing witchcraft, by an angry mob in Papua New Guinea; of course, if the circumstances had been different and the victim had been a Christian nailed to a cross somewhere by an angry mob of non-Christians, I can imagine the worldwide outrage over such an atrocity. Instead, people make foolish comments in an attempt to find humor in this situation or worse, they blame religion itself for the violence and use that argument as a reason to proselytize for atheism. I call on solitary practitioners and covens everywhere to hold a sacred vigil tonight in honor of Kepari.

As a devout Pagan I am absolutely horrified at this story but I am certainly not surprised. We constantly suffer abuse at the hands of religious bigots, even in ‘enlightened’ nations such as the United States. In case it has been forgotten so quickly, President Bush once commented that witchcraft is not a religion and he firmly believes that all Pagans essentially deserve to burn in Hell. The level of prejudiced venom behind such statements is absolutely disgusting.

The first amendment of our constitution is supposed to protect every religion from legislative persecution and yet every day fundamentalist Christians in elected office make a concerted effort to enshrine their Christian beliefs into our system of laws, both locally and at the state and federal levels. American witches need no longer fear that we will suffer the same fate as Kepari but we must continue to remain vigilant and fight against those who literally seek to convert our freedom into a form of biblical slavery. Blessed Be.

About William Knox

Rev. William Knox is the founder and current Chancellor of the Contemporary Pagan Alliance. Ordained in 1995 as an interfaith minister, he serves as senior priest at the Sanctuary of Light in Ravenswood,WV. and is an invested brother in the Shanddite Order of Pagan Secular Monks.
This entry was posted in Death, Faith, God, Morality, Paganism, Peace, Religion and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to And The Burning Times Continue Unabated

  1. Liberty of Thinking says:

    Hi William,
    I am with you re Kepari…
    What a horrendous tragedy. A national media outlet has said that this not something unusual there…
    Government, local police?

  2. owyl says:

    Religious intolerance is intolerable 😦 I don’t understand why people are so hateful

  3. bert0001 says:

    We live in a horrible world, we cannot choose the world we live in, as we are born without being asked first. I will keep Kepari in my thoughts for some time. We need another level of thinking, without having to compare. To compare is the root of intollerance!

    • William Knox says:

      Actually, from a spiritual perspective a fairly cogent argument can be made that we do in fact choose the world we are born into but that is neither here nor there I suppose. Thank you for your comment.

  4. flyinguineapig says:

    William, as a Christian this story disgusts me. I keep telling people that it is in fact a law of our religion to be tolerant and “love thy neighbor as thyself.” Do I wish that the nonchristians I know would come to know and love The Lord? Yeah, but shoving my religious views down people’s throats isn’t going to help that in any way.

    I think it’s hard to remove one’s religion from their political views or what have you. There are certain moral issues that are fought over in the political realm that I think require a Christian perspective and that you might say need a Pagan perspective. Fighting over it won’t get anything done. If the same morality can come from both or even several perspectives then they should all be allowed to flourish and left alone.

  5. Have you heard the horror stories or seen the horror videos of Witches (Medicine Men and Women) being burned alive in Africa?! I saw the videos and I just couldn’t believe it! Papua New Guinea is not the only place such atrocities are happening. Which leaves me curious to ask, does anyone know if we have any Non-Christian Missionary groups out there trying to spread Paganism or something at all other than Christianity?

    I don’t mean to dog on anyone’s religion but – I’d think many of the reasons these sorts of events are occurring is because of Christian Missionaries. After all the Bible in the Old Testament does say, stone or burn all witches. Suffer not a Witch, etc, etc. :/ It just seems that would be the most likely and logical 1st clue I’d look for as to why these events would be occurring.

    And also I’m not especially fond that Christianity is still a major dominating religion in our politics, but you can’t dictate peoples religion either. So I definitely agree, all Pagans, great or small, need to keep fighting the good fight, doing what they can to show we aren’t the enemies. Our Religion is a Religion and it matters to someone, that someone being US.

  6. I have nominated you for the “Very Inspiring Blogger” award! Check this blog post of mine for details:
    Congratulations and thank you for sharing the things that you do! 😀

  7. NEO says:

    There is no possible excuse for the story you report. period, full stop.
    That said, “…if the circumstances had been different and the victim had been a Christian nailed to a cross somewhere by an angry mob of non-Christians, I can imagine the worldwide outrage over such an atrocity…”

    Really? Happens nearly every week in Africa.

    • William Knox says:

      Indeed it does; my comment was entirely sarcastic. The story was dismissed out of hand, Kepari’s plight used as a source of humor by many simply because of the witchcraft element, and such thinking tends to make me respond somewhat unpleasantly. It’s a personal failing, I know.

      • NEO says:

        No problem, and a point well taken. I was a story I had not heard and is horrifying. We often end up in our own worlds where we hear these things about our co-religionists but not others. Which was my point, and it could have been phrased much more kindly.

      • William Knox says:

        Meh, don’t worry about it. If I write something ignorant I expect to be called on it.

      • NEO says:

        And if I get callous, so should I. I think we’re about even on this one. I like your blog BTW

      • William Knox says:

        Thank you and I return the sentiment. Expect a comment or two from me in the near future; I particularly like your IRS and Corruption post.

      • NEO says:

        Thank you, I’m rather proud of that one as well, and I shall be returning to yours as well.

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