Building an Irish Polytheist Community Part 3; The Issue of Authority

Authority has been the largest portion of the conversation so far; practically every post has contained some addendum about how we don’t need to have anyone with authority within the community… That there is no need for resources, that there is no need to raise people into positions of authority (spiritual or otherwise), and that we don not need to “be like other Communities” in order to function. Their reasoning?

“A community is not made by specialists, nor by leaders, spiritual or otherwise.” [X]
“I don’t think that [having community leaders] would really lead anywhere good” [X].

But quite frankly, I have to be the voice against the current here: I don’t like the way the discussion is going in concern to authority, or what it means for us moving forward as a Community. Continue reading “Building an Irish Polytheist Community Part 3; The Issue of Authority”

Building an Irish Polytheist Community Part 2; The Foundations of a Community

A Community is defined as “a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common” and “a feeling of fellowship with others as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals”… But how do you go about actually building one?

Most people think that actions like “just talk” or “just build” are the answer… And as one person put it:

I think we confuse resources and community for one another […] frankly, the answer to community building is simple: talk to each other […] the community is the people, interacting […] This is all a roundabout way for me to try to get at that just… “how to create community” discussions are, from my point of view, extremely redundant and self-perpetuating. we don’t have to talk about how to create one, we just have to talk and it will arrive organically.

And as another user said after Felicity’s response:

“I think saint-felicity already made this point, but it’s worth repeating: a community is not a collection of “resources,” guides, masterposts, or grand projects of any sort. A community is not made by specialists, nor by leaders, spiritual or otherwise.

A community is made up of the relationships between its members. So if you want to build a stronger community, you need to foster those relationships. That means making people feel welcome & encouraged to participate. That means creating opportunities for people to meet & get to know each other. That means fostering conversation & discussion. And over all, it means a focus on *people* not *information.*”

However, while some Communities do develop organically, “Build it and they will come” and similar ideologies are a fallacy that we need to stop believing in if we have any hopes to actually make it work. The idea of “Community”, and its creation and fostering, is a lot more nuanced than anyone gives it credit for- and frankly, it takes a hell of a lot more to build a community than just “people interacting with other people”. Continue reading “Building an Irish Polytheist Community Part 2; The Foundations of a Community”

Building an Irish Polytheist Community Part 1; Why Community is Important

There has been a lot of talk back and forth lately about the need for a more cohesive community surrounding Celtic* Polytheism… And while their words are a bit more harsh than I would have personally used, quite frankly I echo the sentiment of another user when they blatantly say “My question is, where the fuck was that attitude any time before the last week?”.
Continue reading “Building an Irish Polytheist Community Part 1; Why Community is Important”