Everyone once in a while I talk to someone about Them and I don’t believe what they say.
I’m not saying their UPG is invalid or that maybe Loki didn’t do what they said He did or any other thing, but sometimes, I don’t believe them, and I suspect sometimes people don’t believe me.
And that’s okay. My experience is for me and yours is for you.
BUT, I don’t like to be lied to either and I don’t like the phenomena I’ve encountered where some people seem to think I’m LARPing (that’s gamer geek speak for Live Action Role Playing). It kind of cheapens my religious experience and is disrespectful.
Not that it changes my religious experience if others are disrespectful of it, but I try to respect others, so I’d like to hope they would respect me.
But there’s no rule saying they must. I’ve been laughed at before for being pagan. I’ve had eyebrow raises that I work with Loki. I’ve been told I’m going to hell. I don’t believe Jesus is going to rain fire down on my head either, so other people’s UPG? Yeah, no big.
I guess what this wraps back around to is that UPG is personal and we all need to embrace our own UPG and have it makes sense for us. Shared UPG is cool, but not overwhelmingly important to personal practice. I try to approach each conversation I’m involved in with an open mind though, give each person my full attention. I like being an open member of the pagan community for the most part.
So, I guess I’m going to continue being polite at all times, because that’s what others deserve, but I don’t feel compelled to believe every word of every person I speak with, and I think it would be a fool’s errand to do so.