Jump to content

Heathen vs. Pagan


PP1
 Share

Recommended Posts

I'm preaching about the Philistines stealing the Ark of the Covenant. Based on my understanding of what the word Heathen and Pagan mean, I say the Philistines were Heathens and not Pagans. I am debating this with a preacher friend of mine (its like a showdown baby!!!!!!).

 

Most people use these words interchangeably but I am almost positive that the word "Heathen" refers to a person that is not a Jew, Christian, or muslim. The word "Pagan" refers to someone who specifically worships the Greco-Roman Gods and Goddesses.

 

I have some Wiccan friends (actually only 2) that call themselves Pagans simple because they are polytheistic, but I think the academic term refers specifically to Greco-Roman Gods.

 

Google gives several different definitions that confirm and reject my opinion.

 

What do you think when you hear these words?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What a great topic! To me, when I think of Pagans, I think of Druids and maybe Wicans. Pagans are, as you mention, polytheistic. When I think of Heathens, I think of unbeleivers. But not as Agnostic or Athiest...Heathens are brutal, and power driven.

 

Those are my unscholarly impressions.

 

I look forward to the posts of those who are more knowledgeable on the subject.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it is more than just being polytheistic though. I see it more specifically associated with Greco-Roman Gods and Goddesses. So I do not believe that Egyptians were Pagans because they worshipped Egyptian Gods and not Greco-Roman Gods.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Searching wikpedia:

 

 

Paganism is a term that developed among the Christian community of southern Europe during late antiquity to describe religions other than their own or Judaism. Throughout Christendom it continued to be used, typically in a derogatory sense, to describe religious beliefs other than Christianity or Judaism. In the nineteenth century it was re-adopted as a self-descriptor by members of various artistic groups inspired by the ancient world. In the twentieth century it came to be applied as a self-description by practitioners of contemporary Pagan, or Neo-Pagan religious movements.

 

There has been much scholarly argument as to the origins of the term paganism. Paganism has also been understood by some to include any non-Abrahamic religions, but this is generally seen as insulting by adherents of those religions. It is often taken to exclude monotheism, and to express a worldview that is pantheistic, polytheistic, or animistic, however there are some monotheistic Pagans.[1] Once monotheistic religions such as Christianity and Islam started to become more prominent (in processes known as Christianization and Islamization), names to encompass polytheistic worshipers started to develop; some of these include Hellene, Pagan, and Heathen, and at times these names were used as slurs.

 

 

 

And when searching "Heathen" it's interesting that it redirects to this:

 

 

 

Germanic neopaganism, also known as Heathenry or Heathenism, Ásatrú, Forn Siðr, and also Odinism and Theodism, is a contemporary Pagan new religious movement. Its practitioners seek to revive various forms of Germanic paganism, the pre-Christian ethnic religion of the Germanic peoples that existed in Iron Age and Early Medieval Europe. The beliefs of Germanic neopagans vary considerably, from strictly historical polytheistic reconstructionism to syncretic, Jungian, esoteric, mystic or Ariosophical interpretations.

 

Germanic neopaganism is a polytheistic religion, centered around a pantheon of traditional Germanic deities. It adopts the cosmological views that were described in various historical sources, including an animistic view of the cosmos in which the natural world is imbued with spirits. The faith's gods and goddesses are honored in rituals and ceremonies known as Blót, which are often accompanied by Symbel, the act of ceremonially toasting the gods with an alcoholic beverage. The Germanic neopagan community assembles in small groups, usually known as kindreds or hearths, who often perform their rites in specially constructed buildings or outdoors. Some practitioners also engage in Seiðr.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In my younger days I dated a girl for several years who came from a very staunchly southern Methodist background. Her grandmother was NOT happy about her granddaughter dating me...a Catholic. Not only did grandma outright refuse to address me in person, but she also refused to address me by my name, choosing to call me "the heathen" instead.

 

For example, at the dinner table, she would look to one of the other people and say, "Tell the heathen to pass me the salt."

 

Absolutely, honest-to-goodness, the truth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In my younger days I dated a girl for several years who came from a very staunchly southern Methodist background. Her grandmother was NOT happy about her granddaughter dating me...a Catholic. Not only did grandma outright refuse to address me in person, but she also refused to address me by my name, choosing to call me "the heathen" instead.

 

For example, at the dinner table, she would look to one of the other people and say, "Tell the heathen to pass me the salt."

 

Absolutely, honest-to-goodness, the truth.

 

That's funny. I'm Methodist, and have encountered the exact opposite when I dated two different Catholic gals when I was younger, with the girls families not being very accepting of me. To be fair, I don't think it was specifically Methodists that they were upset about...they wouldn't have been happy with their daughters dating any non Catholics. I ended up marrying into a Catholic family, and they've been very accepting of my Non Catholicism.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I guess it all depends on your point of view .

 

I was thinking official Roman Catholic teaching regarding Protestants, at least since the 2nd Vatican Council and Pope John XXIII.

 

Also, I don't think you can actually be both a heathen and a heretic. A heathen would be a practitioner of a pagan religion while a heretic would be someone who ostensibly says she is a Christian but holds some essential views that have been deemed heretical--such as an Arian who would deny the Deity of Christ.

 

BTW, I did not take your original comment seriously. My reply was kinda tongue-in-cheek. Peace.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using the site you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use Policies.