DAMON LEFF. This silly season once again parades politicians from every political party wishing their constituents – their Christian constituents only that is – a merry Christmas. ANC and DA run municipalities alike are again dipping into state coffers to pay for lavish Christmas parties, street lights (including the electricity bills), and public functions, in celebration of a single religious celebration – the celebration of the mythical birth of Jesus the Christ.
Category: Damon Leff
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF. This year Penton I.P.M. has once again entered the SA Blog Awards in the category ‘Best religious / spirituality blog’. The public voting phase will run from Monday, 2 December 2013 until Friday 13 December 2013 at 23:59.
Please support Penton and vote for us by following these simple instructions…
DAMON LEFF. The Clan of Ysgithyrwyn was founded in 1998 as an eclectic, non-hierarchic coven of independent hedge Witches, non-aligned Pagans, friends and family. Our Clan’s collective theology is one of Reverence and Respect for Life and Truth. We believe that by living with reverence and respect for life, for the dead and the living, we affirm our sacred bond with the Earth Goddess, our collective planetary Mother. We believe that by searching always for Truth and by being always truthful, we affirm our aspiration to be worthy of the Mysteries of Her Cauldron.
DAMON LEFF. According to Facebook community standards, safety is Facebook’s top priority. In practice however enforcing community standards on hate speech and credible threats of violence on Facebook falls well below any reasonable benchmark for priority action. Obviously Facebook aught to replace its automated indifference to hate speech with an empathetic and reactive human being in order to give real meaning to the words ‘top priority’.
DAMON LEFF. A recent conversation with a British anthropologist and a prominent British neo-Pagan on the definition of ‘witchcraft’ in relation to Africa, revealed the extent to which modern Witches; actual practitioners and adherents of a religio-magical belief system and practice identified as Witchcraft,  are deliberately marginalized by academia and modern Pagan society in general, in favour of a distorted and prejudicial historical bias against Witchcraft. Our British friends require from us that we challenge the human rights abuses of witch-hunts and witchcraft accusations, but not question the beliefs that engender them.
DAMON LEFF. A recent public letter written by South African academic (and neo-Pagan) Dale Wallace has been circulated widely amongst neo-Pagan covens, groups and individuals in an attempt to incite active opposition against positions of principle taken by the South African Pagan Rights Alliance on a number of advocacy issues currently on SAPRA’s agenda, including advocacy against witch-hunts and Satanic Panic.
DAMON LEFF. Recent conversation in Pagan communities in both South Africa and the U.S. turned to issues of freedom of speech, intolerance, Pagan leadership, and scapegoating.I thought I’d wade through the conversations from my own perspective…
DAMON LEFF. The time has come for South African Pagans to extend a hand of friendship to alternative religious minorities and to engage with members of these faiths without prejudice or judgement. Those who choose to maintain their personal prejudices against what they still incorrectly perceive as “dangerous religious practices”, prejudices based on nothing more than false media speculation, are in my personal opinion, no better than the fundamentalist Christians who continue to impose their own prejudicial bias against Pagans and Witches.