There is an escalating situation around Z Budapest and PantheaCon right now, with a protest planned outside Z's ritual tomorrow due to the nature of its gender exclusivity. This evening has had some strong emotions and high tensions, including Z sending out calls for help and strong words.
There is no need for this escalation.
Z, it does not have to be a war. When we sign up to be the Priestesses of the Goddess, we need to know that sometimes She will send us challenging lessons. How can we work to resolve this with love, with compassion, and with queenly grace? We do not get to take off the crown. Your words, and I do believe them. How might they apply here?
To all those who are angry with Z and her stance, I ask these questions. How can we resolve this without a war, of magic or ideals? How can we hold respectful disagreement with our Elders, inviting them to the table of learning and sharing our wisdom, while still honoring the fact that they built concepts that support our very own evolution?
Can we join together to be the future of peace that we profess to dream of, envision, meditate upon, offer magic for? Can we not collectively model respect, personal self-control, and mutual commitment to resolution, then come to the table in dialogue?
Why sit in silent protest when you can invite someone to a conversation?
Why lunge forth in anger against a harmed and often-humiliated population to try to resolve one's own relationship to pain?
Surely there must be another way.
Z, and all her supporters, and also her opponents: I invite you to be the leaders you were born to be. Outside our community a very real wolf waits- a wolf that would tear down ALL of our rights, regardless of how we feel about each other. How might we engage in a conversation, how might we prioritize peace, solidarity, and universal respect? How might we evolve creative approaches that embrace what we do want rather than resisting what we don't want?
I invite you, Z, and anyone else who wishes it, to attend the Pagans in the Media panel on Sunday at 3:30 at PantheaCon. I am committed to participating in healing this painful wound in our shared pagan psyche, which is the highest level we all share, well above the layers of personal identity attached to any single view. I think there are some real grievances and really good points on both sides of this issue, and I'd like to see us take them on together- arriving at the table already committed to finding true unity in diversity together. Will you join us there?