Thursday, 7 October 2010

Hated by the Daily Mail...

Some of you will know what this post is about by its title, if you do and aren't perplexed by the story then I apologise for any regurgitation that follows:

On Monday the Daily Mail published an article following on from the news that Druidism has been recognised as an official religion by the Charities Commission. Personally I think this news is a breakthrough for minority religious groups, and that can't be too much of a bad thing. However one lady in particular doesn't seem to agree...Melanie Philips - the author of the aforementioned article officially titled Druids as an official religion? Stones of Praise here we come.

I'm not a druid, but I do have many friends who are, and to be honest upon reading this article I am pretty offended on behalf of the human species in general not just the pagan faith(s). I'm not certain but I think some of the contents could be considered as inciting religious hatred (but then again Paganism in all its forms isn't considered an official religion so it doesn't count.) I do find myself a little restricted on just how offended I can get based on the fact that this comes from the Daily Mail in the first place - a newspaper that whenever I have picked it up usually finds me throwing it away in disgust due to the close minded bigoted views they peddle to an unassuming nation. With that in mind however I have a few points for Ms Philips (who may want to do more research before jotting any further pieces)...

"After a four-year campaign, the Commission says it accepts that the Druids worship nature and that they also believe in the spirits of places such as mountains and rivers, as well as in ‘divine guides’.
This, apparently, makes them qualify as a religion."

Ummm. Yes. Worshipping tends to be something quite vital to being a religion.

..."the latest example of how the bedrock creed of this country is being undermined. More than that, it is an attack upon the very concept of religion itself.

This is because Druidry is simply not a religion. Now, it’s true that religion is notoriously difficult to define. But true religions surely rest on an established structure of traditions, beliefs, literature and laws."

And those religions always start out with that do they? I think rather than "true religions" I believe the phrase you're looking for is "modern mainstream religions" Also I would like to offer this author a read of my dictionary...Druids practice Druidism - think about it, Buddhists practice Buddhism rather than Buddhistry.

..."legal definition of religion included a ‘significant belief in a supreme being or entity’, he saw no contradiction. Druids, he said cheerfully, might venerate many gods, inanimate objects or nature. How very inclusive of them! But the key point is surely that none of these beliefs involves a ‘supreme’ being that exists beyond the Earth and the universe. On the contrary, Druids worship what is in or on the earth itself."

Would you like to tell this to your local catholic church? Surely they can't be a religion either seeing as Jesus was reportedly mortal (albeit hailed as the son of god) and so was his mother Mary who is highly venerated (not to mention the many numerous saints who have reached that level since their death) I'm sure all of those count as earthly beings.

"If the Druids qualify as a religion, can other cults such as the Scientologists be far behind?"

At this point I'd quite like to point out that even Scientologists don't like being called a cult, so I'm not sure anyone else does either. Also that Scientology or rather the Church of Scientology applied for a charitable status waaaay back in 1999. They were turned down. If you want to read the reasons a transcript of the report can be found here.
(if you cant be bothered to decipher it however the long and short of it is that the core practices of Scientology, namely auditing and training, and the private conduct and nature of these practices together with their general lack of accessibility meant that the benefits of Scientology were of a personal as opposed to a public nature. Therefore, the public benefit had not been established.)

By three quarters of the way through the author changes tack and openly attacks Paganism (and free thought) in all its forms, complaining that Pagans in the Military, Police force and Prison get *gasp*....Rights!.... like time off...(OK so maybe not the prisons)....

"They have been given the right to take days off to perform rituals, such as leaving food out for the dead, dressing up as ghosts and casting spells, or celebrating the sun god with ‘unabashed sexuality and promiscuity’."

My workplace do this too...its called Annual Leave.

..."legitimised by the doctrines of equality of outcomes and human rights — which, far from protecting the rights of truly religious people, aim to force Biblical morality and belief out of British and European public life altogether.

This is because human rights and equality of outcomes are held to be universal values. That means they invariably trump specific religious beliefs to impose instead equal status for all creeds....And without the Judeo-Christian heritage there would be no morality and no true human rights."

So humans only have rights because of the Bible?...and human rights and equality aren't already considered universal values?...Which century is this woman from? (and she dare call us primitive!!)

"There is nothing remotely enlightened about paganism. It was historically tied up with both communism and fascism, precisely because it is a negation of reason and the bedrock values behind Western progress."

Paganism generally pre-dates both of these concepts (along with the dictionary, I'd also like to offer the author a history book.)

Its good to see that the author who obviously prides herself on her high (biblical?) moral values feels that she should spew hateful propaganda instead of 'turning the other cheek' and 'loving her neighbour'.

1 comment:

Lady Wordsmith said...

What a complete and utter moron this woman is! She really has just teleported from the Dark Ages I think. Bless her little stupid heart :)

Yes, I agree with you - this article does seem to be trying to incite some kind of religious/cultural/historical hatred.