Being Pagan is a way of being, a way of living in this world. It is an Earth-based way in the sense of seeing things from the perspective of being in this world with both feet firmly on the ground rather than from the perspective of an all-knowing, all-powerful, ever-present God above who has revealed the truth through prophets and had it written as Holy Scriptures.
The Earth-based perspective is a natural perspective. It is the perspective with which we are born and that develops as we mature if it is allowed. It develops from within rather than without. It is not a perspective that is imposed on us from external authoritarian figures to which we must comply and conform. Rather it is a perspective that is rooted in our own experiences, both personal and communal.
Some common themes emerge from a survey of different Earth-based perspectives:
1. Everything is connected, inter-related. All are kin. What effects one affects all.
2. Change is constant. To live is to change. Everything lives.
3. Change is cyclic. Sex, birth, and death mark significant points in the cycles of change.
4. Humans are part of Nature.
5. As humans we are healthier and more productive, we prosper when we live in harmony with ourselves and all others. Living in harmony or being balanced with ourselves is living in such a way that our head (thoughts), heart (emotions), and hands (actions) are in sync with each other. We experience inner discord or conflict when our head, heart, and hands are out of sync with each other. Living in harmony with others is living in such a way that allows them to prosper too.
6. Conflict is essential to the cyclic changes of Nature. It is both the catalyst and result of change. We can live in harmony with conflict. Some conflict is helpful and life-affirming. Some conflict is harmful and life-denying.
7. There is more to Nature than what we perceive with our physical senses or conclude rationally with our minds. There is an invisible dimension to Nature. There are invisible beings in Nature: goddesses, gods, and other spirits including the spirits of our ancestors. Some spirits are in the land, plants, and animals of this world. Other spirits live independently of this physical world, in the Otherworld. We can know all of these kinds of spirits by way of our mental or psychic senses.
8. Death is a natural part of the cycle of life. Death feeds life.
9. When we die in this world we live on in the invisible or Otherworld.