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Theres plenty of pagan religions around today that arent "modern" take hinduism or Zaroastrianism, countless African religions, Amazonian ones - this article is really really myopic and innacurate.

Survivals in Folklore[edit]

This subsection is in sore need of at least minimal citations! I have heard this claim bandied about by scholars such as Prof. Ronald Hutton in his "Triumph of the Moon", but neither did he bother to substantiate his claim that folklore must be divorced from pre-Christian religious activities! Moreover, much research in both Witchcraft Studies and the field of Indo-European Studies is showing quite strong parallels to the ancient rites that have persisted in what we call folk-lore, such as Éva Pócs, "Between the Living and the Dead" (this requires an extensive knowledge concerning Indo-European Paganism from Celtic Ireland, Rome, Greece, and Norse Paganism, etc. to note the parallels that she is establishing with the Witch trials throughout Europe and other shamanic cultures) and M. L. West's "Indo-European Poetry & Myth". — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:33, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

Illyrian paganism[edit]

I do not see any information about Illyrian paganism. I am gathering some information from different historians on the issue. Also there are a lot of pagan elements in Albanian folkloric tales and tradition that could be very informative to add. Any comment? AnnaFabiano (talk) 11:45, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

Its all in Illyrian godsMegistias (talk) 21:51, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
If you are referring to something like this rejected material.It has nothing to do with Illyrians.Megistias (talk) 00:28, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
What are you talking about (the link that you entered is not mine and is misleading)? I am saying that Illyrians are known by most (if not all) authors as pagans. They were marked as such by many Greek and Roman wittings. It is unusual that an ancient pagan tribe is not mentioned in this article. Here are e couple of references i found very fast: Strengthening Religious Tolerance..., Page 20, Albania By MaryLee Knowlton, also Page 20, After the rain: how the West lost the East, Page 101... AnnaFabiano (talk) 01:00, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
There is no relationship between Albanian folklore and Illyrian gods or any proven Albanian - Illyrian such element.See Origin of the Albanians.Those sources are not reliable or suitable.Megistias (talk) 08:55, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

... Lol such an bullshit. What's about Tomorr ...Albanian mountain even today keeps the name of the Illyrian God of Creation. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:40, 15 September 2012 (UTC)


Says "pagan denotes all non-Abrahamic religions". Does this include buddhism? -- (talk) 02:54, 1 November 2009 (UTC)

I don't know. Just for everyone's benefit, in my culture which is armenian, we call our previous religions and all other pagan religions "hetanos". That is actually mentioned in the article. We call the gods of those previous religions "chastvadz". Astvadz means god. When you put "ch" in front, which makes the same sound as in China or cherry or cheese, the word becomes a negative. It is like saying false god or agod (ungod?). In the case of buddhism, there are no gods, so I don't know if we would call it hetanos. These words are used in a derogatory manner. I'm sure that some people in my culture would use those words. Vmelkon (talk) 19:40, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

Let's sort this page out![edit]

Right. This page is getting to be a mess. It needs a clean-up, and it needs good referencing for everything, not just from "msn dictionary" but from solid, academic works. I suggest that we start by soprting out the introduction, which is just a mess with bullet points and other junk thrown in at the moment. (Midnightblueowl (talk) 16:59, 9 November 2009 (UTC))

there are better revisions in the page history, it may be worth browsing that before starting from scratch. This is one of the pages that needs deep reverts every couple of months because people will insist on deteriorating it. --dab (𒁳) 14:14, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for reverting it dab, I think that we need to add some more referenced material, I have a definition of paganism created by Jones & Pennick (1995) that is probably worth adding in, and might see if any other material can be added to improve this article.(Midnightblueowl (talk) 20:52, 14 November 2009 (UTC))

This article appears to be quite an entropy-magnet with all the anon edits it is getting. We seem to be getting nowhere. Perhaps semiprotetion will help, but then somebody will need to sit down and actually improve it. It isn't good practice to semiprotect an article in a half-baked state such as this one's. --dab (𒁳) 14:17, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

I have concerns with the "definition of paganism" by Jones & Pennick (1995). It is fair enough that these are Neopagan authors. However, Nigel Pennick isn't exactly what I would call an erudite Neopagan author (unlike, say, Bonewits). The definition also falls flat on its face as soon as you try it out. It is tailored to suit Wicca, but it will already fail to classify as "pagan" lots of Neopagan movements, not to mention most historical polytheistic religions. By contrast, it will include as "pagan" Roman Catholicism (1. plurality of divine beings, with an underlying unity: check. 2. Nature as manifesttion of the divine: check. 3. female aspect of divinity: check). No so in Germanic paganism which assumes the natural world is just "there" and not any kind of divine manifestation. Nor does Germanic paganism have any kind of capital-G-Goddess, just goddesses.

It is fair enough to state that this is what Jones & Pennick (1995) think "pagan" means, but I have doubts whether it is notable enough to be included here rather than at the Nigel Pennick article. --dab (𒁳) 14:34, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Paganism - Classifications[edit]

The section on Paganism - Classifications focuses on classifications only produced by one person, and appear to be rather subjective.

Perhaps this section should be removed, or expanded to encompass more detailed classifications with a more NPOV. Der.Gray (talk) 05:54, 23

You have a point. I am not comfortable with the section myself. Its purpose is to point out the distinction between historical paganism and Neopaganism. The distinction is important, but Bonewits' terms are idiosyncratic. This needs more work. --dab (𒁳) 14:15, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Putting the deleted classification section here for further discussion. Classification helps with understanding. Obankston (talk) 17:59, 4 February 2010 (UTC)


Pagan subdivisions coined by Isaac Bonewits.[1]

The book list in [1] uses these three terms in describing the books, so that means the terms can be considered standard usage. There is also the Wikipedia:WikiProject Neopaganism that justifies the use of that term. The classifications make important distinctions having to do with their origination and their ingredients.

  • Paleopaganism or paleo-paganism, originated historically, not impacted by later developments
  • Mesopaganism or meso paganism, originated historically, impacted by later developments, but maintains its distinctiveness
  • Neopaganism, originated in modern times, but is the effort to recreate and/or merge elements from paleopaganism and/or mesopaganism.

Obankston (talk) 06:04, 1 March 2010 (UTC)

Confusing  ???[edit]

This whole page is very confusing? What is paganism? Please say it in simple words! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:45, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

The word "pagan" or "paganism" has different meanings in different contexts, and means different things to different people. So there is not one simple definition that fits all situations. The link [2] gives 7 distinct defintions. The words are usually used to classify or characterize the beliefs, world view, meaning of life, lifestyle, religion, or spiritual paths of people. What exactly is tossed in the bucket of "pagan" or "paganism" and what is not tossed in varies on who is using the word. One thing that is never tossed in the bucket is the core beliefs of the Abrahamic religions (Christianity, Islam and Judaism). Obankston (talk) 06:45, 8 February 2010 (UTC)
you (original poster) may want to try simple:Paganism. Also, we are an encyclopedia, not a glossary of English terms. If the simple article is still too long for you, you can try wikt:paganism for the dictionary answer to the question of "what is paganism". --dab (𒁳) 17:45, 8 February 2010 (UTC)

I agree. The article seems to have been written by someone who has confused Heathen and Pagan. 'Pagan' as a term to denote non-christian religions is an archaic and ignorant (ie Christian) usage of the word. The few pagans I have met have a set of beliefs, attitudes and practices which mark them out as one distinct group. Pagan is not a catch-all term for non biblical religions. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:17, 17 August 2010 (UTC)

There's nothing wrong with using "Pagan" as a technical term for "non-Christian". The fact that it is a very old usage, doesn't make it incorrect. Nor is it clear why it is "ignorant" to use it (since that is what it meant originally). The fact that some modern groups have picked up the word and used it to label their own religious practices (which they of course have every right to do) doesn't somehow forbid Christians from using the word in its older sense, at least when its clear from context what is meant. The use of the term in Christian discourse is a useful reminder that non-Christians are not the enemy of the Church, but rather non-combatants ("paganus" = civilian in Tertullian's usage). Francis Davey (talk) 09:53, 31 December 2010 (UTC)
Tertullian was writing when the empire was still "pagan" and indeed at this time it was expedient to regard those who were not in the "army of Christ" as civilians. When Christianity gained the political uperhand through the shift introduced by Constantine the sentiment changed rapidly to regarding those who were not in the army of Christ as being in the army of satan, albeit with dispensations for Jews whom they reluctantly accepted as worshipping imperfectly the same god. For the greater part of the history of Christianity paganism meant demon worship and it is only in comparatively recent times that toleration has been extended to non-Abrhamic religions. Many modern pagans quite happily describe themselves as pagans in order to indicate they do not worship the deity described in the bible and some do so because they consider the attributes of that god evil. ma'at (talk) 14:38, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

You are referring to Neopaganism, which has its own article, and a dedicated section in this article. Perhaps the article would be less confusing if people would condescend to actually reading it. --dab (𒁳) 11:32, 17 August 2010 (UTC)

Ethnic religions of pre-Christian Europe[edit]

Shouldn't also Sami shamanism be included in this section? (talk) 10:33, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

Or maybe Finnish paganism should be changed with Finnic paganism as to include Karelian, Estonian, Finnish and Sami paganism. (talk) 02:54, 29 December 2010 (UTC)
I believe Sami shamanism can be included into this section, but with proper research and a general consent from other Wiki editors!Salman 11:13, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

Help please[edit]

The article Neo-Pagan (literature) is one of Wikipedias article tagged the longest as needing references, if someone knowledgeable could take a look it would be a great help. JeepdaySock (AKA, Jeepday) 12:01, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Pagan or pagan?[edit]

A couple of recent edits here have addressed this problem and I've tried to be very precise in my latest. I have left (or re-inserted) a capital P for Pagan or Paganism when it seems to be referring to an organised religious movement or member thereof. However sometimes pagan is just used as an ordinary adjective, and paganism is being referred to very loosely - eg in the same breath as shamanism and polytheism, which are not capitalised.

This argument is like the one we had at Wicca over gods and goddesses versus the God and the Goddess: I'd like to think we can agree a way forward collaboratively. What do others think? Kim Dent-Brown (Talk) 16:15, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Personally, my take is that 'pagan' shouldn't be capitalised. While I agree that the names of specific religions should always carry a capital (Christianity, Islam, Asatru), broad religious categories shouldn't (monotheism, deism, agnosticism). I suppose it's debatable whether a 'religious movement' - which I'd view as a looser grouping than 'a religion' - should be capitalised: would you say 'creationism' or 'Creationism'? Would you say 'Millennialism' or 'millennialism'? Or 'Dispensationalism' or 'dispensationalism'?
The general principle seems to be that nouns in general don't carry a capital, unless they're being used to describe a single specific object. So we say 'a galaxy' but 'the Galaxy' when we're referring specifically to our own. Many prime ministers have run the UK, but the Prime Minister is David Cameron (as I write, anyway).
I would say that 'paganism' is more an umbrella term than it is a specific religion: a Wiccan, for example, might consider themselves pagan, but s/he believes completely different things from an adherent of the Roman 'Cultus Deorum' - though the latter is also a pagan religion. In fact, if you take the broad view, it's difficult to see just what factors all pagans have in common. Certainly, there is no specific religion called 'Paganism', which would warrant a capital letter, and I think if we use a capital we risk misleading readers into thinking that there is. My vote would be for lower-case. - Silvensis (talk) 10:53, 17 May 2011 (UTC)

We are talking of two different meanings of the same word, one a proper noun, the other not.

When used as an adjective describing a type of religion or a people, rather than a noun labeling a faith, then the lower-case "pagan" is appropriate.

However, I counter Silvensis's above arguments with a comparative analogue: Catholic, Mormon, Episcopalian, and Baptist are all specific faiths with clearly identifiable distinctions between them, but collectively "christianity" is too broad of a term to be capitalized as a proper noun because it is not referencing a specific religious tradition. None of you would accept that, and I reject the same. Certainly, Paganism is a broad family of various religions who share similar elements, the term is, in modern usage, equally justified in distinction as Christianity, Islam, or Buddhism. Wicca, Druidry, Stregheria, and Asatru are all distinct faiths clearly identifiable from one another, but each of them are Pagan traditions in the same vein that Sunni, Shia, and Sufi are each distinct traditions of Islam.

Generally speaking, I would suspect that the older the subject matter, the more likely that "pagan" be the proper term. If for no other reason than when referencing history in this manner, you'll be describing the subject peoples more specifically than their faiths. As the article turns more modern (late-medieval period and later) the terminology will change because the people, previously described, no longer exist as they had prior to the mass conversions of the Catholic Church. By this period, any reference to "pagan" would most likely be directly identifying beliefs (or belief systems), rather than an adjective, and thus should be capitalized. Gawain VIII (talk) 19:13, 20 March 2012 (UTC)


Some sources say Alawism includes paganism: [3][4][5]

This should be added to the article. --Supreme Deliciousness (talk) 18:22, 24 May 2011 (UTC)

All modern religions include remnant pagan elements. Why should Alawites be singled out? FunkMonk (talk) 17:03, 15 January 2013 (UTC)

Abrahamic Religions[edit]

There seems little here on the discoveries that these religions were formed from polytheism; and indeed Christianity still has the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost for example. It seems to be biased towards the Abrahamic religions as being the right religions. (talk) 07:03, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

The theories relating to this indeed may be worthy of note and go back a long time. The Jews of Elephantine did appear to worship Yahweh and his consorts and I know some scholars regard the "strong" monotheism of scriptures as an attempt by a ruling religious elite to suppress and enforce their version of orthodoxy. As has been pointed out the use of such terms as "monotheism" and "polytheism" is a projecting back into a time categories where strictly they have no place. Many ancient cultures could and did believe in divine unity in plurality and this continues today. To ask the question "Were X polytheists or monotheists?" is like asking "is a photon a particle or a wave?". Expect article inflation if you do add anything about this as you will have the "orthodox" filling the page with their refutations. Yt95 (talk) 08:58, 1 June 2011 (UTC)


"Paganism is a derogatory term used by certain religions in an attempt to diminish competing religions by grouping those religions under a single believed abstraction. Since it is much simpler to diminish a single abstract religion than a plethora of small complicated religions, the term has been used quite often as a rally and justification for religious wars and in various religious sermons to identify "non-believers". In other words, there has never been a religion called paganism nor has there ever been a person who calls them self a pagan, there is no pagan bible. It is often used to show a lack of respect for another religions."

I realize this is a religious page probably run by religious people, but be fair. Paganism is nothing more than a christian construct. What I state above it true, stop deleting it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:41, 27 October 2011 (UTC)

Thanks for bringing this to the talk page. I have my own views (I was the one who reverted this!) but it would be good to hear from others. Any takers? Kim Dent-Brown (Talk) 18:05, 27 October 2011 (UTC)
Well, maybe it's just me with eyes on the page at the moment! So here's my view (apologies for its bluntness). I think the new paragraph greatly worsens the article, is poorly written, displays a controversial point of view with no sources and is out of line with the rest of the article. Most of it comes across as original research - eg the unsourced assertion that "nor has there ever been a person who calls them self a pagan". There are thousands of people in the UK alone (about 50,000) who described themselves as pagans in the last Census conducted in 2001, and referred to in the published data from that study.
I quite accept that for early Christians (as the article makes clear) pagan was used as a derogatory term but we are not living in the period of early Christianity now. The term classical paganism is well attested as a neutral way of describing Roman and Hellenic religious culture, and modern pagans use the term proudly.
As the manual of style for lead paragraphs makes clear, material in the lead paragraph needs to be consistent with the rest of the article and reflect and summarise it fairly. In particular, if any part of the lead is controversial it needs sourcing just as any other part of the article.
There are some small elements of the paragraph that I don't disagree with: eg "there has never been a religion called paganism" and "there is no pagan bible". But on the whole I can't see this paragraph as an improvement and I'm going to delete it again. While I am not one for edit wars, (and I restrict myself to 1RR except in the case of clear vandalism, which this is not), I can't sit back and watch the article deteriorate in this way. If the IP chooses to restore the paragraph then I won't revert again today, but I will contact other editors who have been active here to try and generate more discussion. Kim Dent-Brown (Talk) 08:43, 28 October 2011 (UTC)
I agree with you. There are clearly a number of people who describe themselves as pagans, and I will delete this if it's restored, if for no other reason that it is unsourced and doesn't follow our guidelines for a lead. Dougweller (talk) 10:16, 28 October 2011 (UTC)


"Peasant" is a cognate, via Old French paisent.[12]" seems to contradict what's on the [Peasant] page, and the citation page seems to have gone away.

Someone with a clue should clarify — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:38, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

I don't think there's a contradiction as I can find several sources saying this, I've added a 2nd source. Dougweller (talk) 12:43, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

Cross-language etymology sourcing[edit]

The pre-Christian use of the word "pagan" fascinates me from the cross-language point of view. In the Czech language, the pagan is "pohan" and means the same as in English. However, there is a region in southern Moravia called "Pohansko" and also one called "Haná". I saw an ancient map, where much larger region of S. Moravia was called "Ganna". In Norwegian language, "po" could mean location, as PoGanna could be "located on Ganna". Realizing that most English speaking contributors don't speak Czech, I would like to enhance this dimension. Considering Ganna could be the ancient land of plenty (as the herds of wolly mammoths, aurochs and European bisons and other large game migrated through this region on annual basis), many connotations could be connected to this land. Of course Hana and Ganna I consider interchangeable through the ages. Pohan/pagan could be at first the person living "on Ganna". Later it could be used by Latin as country dweller. There is another country lying nearby with name starting with Po/pa: Panonia, today largely forgotten land, because it's called Hungary nowadays. Also there are legends of Rihanna, who could be the Queen of Hanna from the way the word is structured (Ri being for Rex). I would love to research this further with someone who knows the other side... — Preceding unsigned comment added by Alarixus (talkcontribs) 12:07, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

This really isn't an approriate venue for such research, you need a forum or something. Are you aware of WP:VERIFY, {{WP:RS]] and WP:NOR? Dougweller (talk) 14:39, 12 March 2012 (UTC)

Should Hinduism/Buddhism be listed into Paganism?[edit]

According to the context of Paganism, religions other than Abrahamic are considered Pagan. If so, I'd like to propose an article advancement -presenting details on available Non-Abrahamic religions, namely Hinduism for its Idol worship.

Should we also be focusing into Central Asian perspective, namely India, Sri Lanka, Nepal for their Devil like figure Worshiping, needs a general consensus? If we expert editors agree to it, then it is our duty to advance the article on every pagan considered religion accessible to our understanding.

My concern is not biased, or in opposition to any religion or beliefs. It is a probability, which needs general consent from fellow Wiki Editors and Contributors. I'd also make an adamant point, that the elaboration to be in accordance to in-depth and authentic research, and not to be infiltrating any widely practiced Gods or Religious Beliefs.

Let us all know your feedback?? Salman 11:07, 17 April 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Samsujata (talkcontribs)

Sounds reasonable. Though a line might be drawn between what are "technically" Pagans (Hindu, Animists, Buddhists), and what are pagans in the "classical" sense of the word. Boneyard90 (talk) 08:32, 22 September 2012 (UTC)
Why should Eastern religions be subject to the Christian perspective, especially when the term has been used historically to represent an inherent Abrahamic bias which also has pejorative connotations among monotheists? And, how can World_religions be considered pagan? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 1o8 (talkcontribs) 11:32, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
I am disturbed by Salman's phrase "their Devil like figure Worshiping". Hindus and Buddhists do NOT worship figures of the Devil, nor the Devil at all, and Devil worship is NOT Pagan. It is, in fact, a Christian (and perhaps Islamic) heresy. Pagans neither worship nor recognize the existence of "The Devil", and regardless of any visual similarities (like those between Pan and some renditions of the Devil) there is no relation between these entities except in the minds of certain types of Christians and Muslims. Idol Worship (or, rather, worship which utilizes idols), however, is a practice often found among Pagan religious peoples, but for centuries Catholics were accused of the same because of their use of effigies and statuary, forbidden in the Old Testament. IMO, Hinduism is Pagan, and IF Buddhism is a religion it would also be a Pagan one. Some Buddhists regard their path as a spiritual philosophy rather than a religion, and for many it does not involve the worship of gods, exactly. Rosencomet (talk) 20:10, 21 January 2014 (UTC)
Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism, and Shinto are all examples of pagan religions. In fact, since Christianity is polytheistic, it is pagan as well! (talk) 22:19, 18 October 2014 (UTC)
Using that logic you could define Judaism as pagan, with its angels, its "sons of God" who married human women in antediluvian times, and the recognition that the Gods of the Philistines were real but inferior in their miracle making to the one who led Abraham? One step further and I have to wonder about those atheists who venerate Richard Dawkins and Stephen Hawking. Before we add Trekology and the collection of Star Wars icons to the list, perhaps there should be a boundary drawn. Perhaps an inclusionary/exclusionary note in the lede? Trilobitealive (talk) 12:16, 19 October 2014 (UTC)

Last Pagans in Europe[edit]

The article doesn't go into detail of how paganism went extinct in Europe, but it should be mentioned where it survived the longest. I've seen some sources claiming Lithuania was the last, only becoming Christina in the 1400s. If so, it should be stated. Could also be interesting to state when paganism was exterminated in the Middle East. FunkMonk (talk) 17:06, 15 January 2013 (UTC)

Conclusion about pagan / Christian confusion too extreme[edit]

I've removed the section: ' For these reasons, it is difficult if not impossible to draw a clear line between "Christianity" and "Paganism" for the period of the 3rd to 4th centuries when Christianity was in its formative phase. Only with the emergence of Orthodox Christianity as reflected in the Apostle's Creed and the final decline of Hellenistic paganism by the 6th century does "Paganism" become a concept clearly distinct from Christianity.

Given that Christianity spent the first 300 years of its existence being persecuted by some of the proponents of 'Paganism' and has an increasingly clear authority structure, it is too extreme to argue that the two can't be said to be distinct. The church had a comprehensive system of local councils where bishops consulted to define what was and was not acceptable; the Ecumenical councils constitute an extension of that pattern rather than a radical innovation. As early as 180 Irenaeus writes Adversus Haereses which defines Christianity in contradistinction to lots of other beliefs. Whilst it is legitimate to see pagan INFLUENCES on Christianity, it is far too simplistic to argue they can't be distinguished. Ender's Shadow Snr (talk) 08:29, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

Term: Pagan[edit]

I've moved some material about the use of the term "Pagan" from the opening paragraph to the section about "Nomenclature", since the article is about Pagan Religions, not the use of a term, and since there IS a section about just that which seemed a more appropriate place for it.Rosencomet (talk) 22:12, 6 January 2014 (UTC)

I think the lead needs to mention that the term is considered demeaning and dismissive of non-Abrahamic faiths. For example referring to African Traditional religions as pagan would not be PC today.--Inayity (talk) 10:38, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
What is "PC"? Bladesmulti (talk) 11:01, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
"Politically Correct" Editor2020 (talk) 19:12, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. Bladesmulti (talk) 19:30, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
I do NOT think that whether the term "is considered demeaning and dismissive of non-Abrahamic faiths" belongs in the lead, nor do I accept that this is so. African traditional religions ARE Pagan religions, and there is nothing derogatory about that. They are both non-Abrahamic and polytheistic. Also, a "faith" cannot consider anything to be anything unless it is part of it's principles, and the use of a term does not apply. MEMBERS of a faith may regard a term to be demeaning or dismissive, but that may be a misunderstanding of its meaning or a prejudice itself, and even if you could document a study showing this to be so for a significant number of the faith's members it still, IMO, would not belong in the lead. That attitude would not be a key characteristic of the subject, but merely a reaction to a term, right or wrong. Rosencomet (talk) 19:52, 21 January 2014 (UTC)

Undiscussed move[edit]

On 3 November, Srinivasasha (talk · contribs) moved Paganism to Pagan religions without discussion. His reason: 'the tearm "Paganism" may mean a single religion. "Pagan religions" means group of religions'. This was not a technical move. It was a disagreement over definition. I have reverted this move.

Please discuss any disagreement over the reverted move here rather than taking further undiscussed actions. —Sowlos  18:05, 13 February 2014 (UTC)

For the record, it is my position that: an English word suffixed with -ism can refer to a pluralistic concept, this is not at all uncommon in English, this is consistent with common and academic usage of the word paganism, and WP:UCN informs us that we should use the most common term as the name for an article (which is this case would be paganism). —Sowlos  18:18, 13 February 2014 (UTC)
This article is about the entire concept of paganism, and is where it belongs. While I strongly agree (really, really, really strongly) that there were many and still are many pagan religions of many sources, there is a vocal camp (descending from the Fraser/Graves/Campbell sphere of wanton syncretism and glossing over of differences) who are convinced that paganism is conceptually actually one diffuse world-wide religion-in-spirt, with only localized differences of detail. While I think that's utterly stupid, it's a well-published viewpoint that our article needs to address (as WP:FRINGE, per WP:UNDUE policy), not try to hide. A second problem with a move to Pagan religions is is apt to inspire people to shift this toward a neverending checklist of pagan (under one definition or another) religions and maybe-religions. If people want such a mess, they can go start List of pagan religions.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  10:47, 21 October 2015 (UTC)


There should be more clarity about the derivation of this term, as "someone not of Christian or Jewish origin" is not the original meaning. According to Oxford Dictionaries, under Origin of the word "heathen", it says "Old English hǣthen, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch heiden and German Heide; generally regarded as a specifically Christian use of a Germanic adjective meaning 'inhabiting open country', from the base of heath."[3] The term, "heath", is simply "an area of open uncultivated land, especially in Britain, with characteristic vegetation of heather, gorse, and coarse grasses."[4]


"Historical Polytheism"?[edit]

What exactly does this mean? I have never heard of "historic monotheistic" religions, so I am confused. (talk) 22:12, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

block quotes in references[edit]

Is there any way to move, hide or remove the huge block quote in reference 34 and the moderately big one in reference 36? To my way of thinking they should be in the article if they are important and gone if not. Since I'm not an expert on the subject I can't judge them to be anything except aesthetically unpleasing stuck there in the reference list.Trilobitealive (talk) 01:49, 22 October 2014 (UTC)


Per my edit summary, neopaganism is a scant part of the article. The lead should reflect the balance of the rest of the article. Perhaps it could be expanded, asHellenic isn't even mentioned. I suspect someone with interest in neopaganism expanded the lead at one point. It's still linked there, but not overweighted as it was before.Two kinds of porkMakin'Bacon 14:10, 28 October 2014 (UTC)

New Lead[edit]

As an assignment for this course, I expanded and made some changes to the lead section so that it better reflected the contents of the article. Mpastr1 (talk) 19:48, 2 March 2015 (UTC)

Lets see if the lead tag is still needed or not. Bladesmulti (talk) 06:27, 3 March 2015 (UTC)

Lead paragraph[edit]

I have reverted the recent edit of the lead paragraph because it was contradictory. It stated both that the term pagan dated from the 15th century and that it originated in late antiquity.

Wiktionary provides the solution to this apparent error. "Recorded in English since about 1375. From Latin pāgānus ‎(“rural, rustic”), later "civilian". The meaning "not (Judeo-)Christian" arose in Vulgar Latin, probably from the 4th century." From

I have edited the page to reflect this and inserted a reference from Augustine. I have added a citation tag for the 1375 appearance as, for some reason, my Oxford English Dictionary program won't run today. Once I fix it I will add the citation. Morgan Leigh | Talk 06:19, 30 July 2016 (UTC)

Hi Morgan Leigh. Thanks for your input. I originally had a longer intro which included the history of both terms. We need to keep in mind that "paganism" and "pagan" are two different words. Based on the online etymological dictionary already cited (it uses the Oxford Etymological Dictionary as a source), the word "paganism" is from the 15th century (also Marriam-Webster notes the same fact [6], but the word "pagan" is from a pre-christian time and means like you mentioned - rustic or rural. Perhaps it can be worded better since "paganism" (a reification) was invented many centuries after "pagan" had been around. Also keep in mind that no one self-described themselves as a "pagan" before the 20th century so the concept of "paganism" is problematized by that fact too and will give the readers the impression that "paganism" (a modern concept) was historical when it really was not. What do you think? Huitzilopochtli (talk) 06:35, 30 July 2016 (UTC)
  • The lead paragraphs require severe revision. The issue is that it doesn't contain even a brief summary of what paganism is, instead jumping into useless debate over its origins. (talk) 15:03, 16 August 2016 (UTC)


Before Rome changed it´s primary form of theological viewpoint from multi to single, cristianity itself was in this term, pagan.

The Linguistical derivative is: That what can be purchased, sold, traded in terms of human/humanoids, therefore indebintured servants and slaves, would be pagans.

Defacto, that instance is a reverse, where those that practice slavery are pagans, which is what led to the change from multi to single in the Roman Era. IE: A pagan is someone whom does not practice slavery, and for what are other regions, therefore enslaveable. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:05, 12 January 2017 (UTC)