Patheos Pagan Posts: Horned Gods, New Religions, Your Worst Nightmare, and More!

Happy Monday! It’s a bit of a slow news day, must be a festival-season thing, so let’s check out some of the great content available here at the Patheos Pagan portal. At his new Patheos blog Raise the Horns, Jason Mankey wonders how the Celtic god Cernunnos became the dominant Horned God figure within modern Wicca and related Pagan faiths, when it was Pan who enjoyed tremendous popularity in the poetic and artistic fore-bearers to Wicca. Quote: “However, while Pan is the proto-type for our modern image of the Horned God, another god, the Celtic Cernunnos, has superseded him. If you look at most modern images of the Horned God, he tends to look far more Cernunnosy than Pan-like.

The God(s) Beat Expands on the Internet

It’s no secret for those who’ve been paying attention that traditional media outlets (ie newspapers) have been cutting back on their coverage of religion. This was confirmed by a Pew Forum study that analyzed news coverage of religion for 2009 and found that new media (blogs, web sites, podcasts, etc) were taking up the slack, and becoming the primary outlet for religion news, debate, and discussion. In 2009, religion attracted significantly more attention in new media sources than in the mainstream media.in a sample drawn from millions of blogs and social media finds that religion was a top story in nearly a quarter of the weeks studied (11 out of 45 weeks) … The blogosphere and other social media tools have grown over the past few years. According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 51% of internet users post online content that they have created themselves. Eleven percent of all adults use blogs.

A Trip Around the Pagan Blogosphere

Let’s check in on what’s happening around the Pagan blogosphere! The Fate of Fate: Chas Clifton at Letter From Hardscrabble Creek comments on the grim prospects of the classic metaphysical/Fortean magazine Fate. Once owned by Llewellyn Worldwide, and then sold to former employee, the magazine has gone from being a monthly, to bi-monthy, and now, it seems, PDF download only. “The magazine death pool is so close you can smell the fetid waters. Fate’s blog keeps putting up new entries, but discussion of the magazine’s own fate is oddly missing. The economics must be rough.

Religion Coverage is Going to the Blogs

The Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life have released a study that analyzes news coverage of religion for 2009. The take-home message? Mainstream media coverage of religion continues to shrink (0.8% of the news, as opposed to 1% last year), and new media (blogs, web sites, podcasts, etc) is taking up the slack, and becoming the primary outlet for religion news, debate, and discussion. In 2009, religion attracted significantly more attention in new media sources than in the mainstream media.in a sample drawn from millions of blogs and social media finds that religion was a top story in nearly a quarter of the weeks studied (11 out of 45 weeks) … The blogosphere and other social media tools have grown over the past few years.

Quick Note: Pagans and the Religious Blogosphere

The Social Science Research Council has released a study titled “The New Landscape of the Religion Blogosphere.” A snapshot of some of the most influential religion blogs, its primary goal seems to be getting the religion-blog “A-List” to communicate and collaborate with one-another. “The purpose at hand is to foster a more self-reflective, collaborative, and mutually-aware religion blogosphere. Ideally, this report will spark discussion among religion bloggers that will take their work further, while also inviting new voices from outside existing networks to join in and take part.” Yes, The Wild Hunt is included in the study as “leading” blog on modern Paganism, I’m one of the few minority faith blogs included (along with a smattering of Buddhist and Humanist/atheist sites).