Pagan News and Views Since 1998

We Don't Have To Hide - We're Everywhere

For this holiday season, I went to visit family. It was wonderful, but I think my favorite part was the flight home.

When I staggered onto the plane, hunching over with the weight of my carry-on luggage (I'm rather short, so it's hard to get it into the overhead bins), I was customarily greeted by a flight attendant. Feeling in a good mood, I smiled and nodded at him. He said, "Good afternoon, ma'am," back to me. As the line moved along the aisle of the plane, he must have caught sight of my pentacle necklace and said, "Blessed be," after me.

I would have returned it, except for one problem: I had no idea what he had said to me. It sounded like "Pasta pea" because of my hearing problem. So I just smiled again. I had a feeling that what he said was semi-important, but I just had no idea what the words had been.

It was a three-hour-long flight, and the moment I got to my seat, I realized that whatever the attendant had said sounded sort of like "Blessed be." I considered dismissing that notion - after all, what person would risk letting Public People know that they were a Pagan? After the ridicule I've endured (admittedly not much, but I've had a good enough taste of it to know how it can be), I doubted that that was what he had said.

When the plane landed, and I managed to get my bag out of the overhead bin without giving anyone brain damage, I exited the plane and decided that, since I was never going to see any of the surrounding people again, I would take a chance and assume that he said said "Blessed be" to me. When I passed the flight attendant as I disembarked, I smiled and said "Blessed be" to him, trying not to sound nervous.

He smiled and happily replied, "Blessed be!"

Those simple words made me so, so happy. They also made me realize something.

We don't have to hide anymore.

I know a lot of you have already discovered this, but I just realized it, myself. I realized that Pagans are everywhere, and when we find a fellow Pagan, we don't have to be discreet in greeting them.

Another thing I noticed? Nobody cared. Everyone heard (I know this because of my hearing problem: I'm excessively loud when I don't mean to be). Nobody glared, or said anything.

It was different from my Samhain trip to Salem. Then, everyone was greeting loudly because we were certain than a great many Pagans were around us. This man publicly greeted me as a Pagan, when the people around us (as far as we could see) had no specific religious identification. It was...magical. Eye-opening. I loved it. I've been smiling ever since.

And it also makes me feel less alone. While my family (and I'm sure many of yours) is comprised of Christians, the World is a vast place, and our fellow Pagans (and Pagan-friendly people) can pop up randomly, when we least expect it. They can even be flight attendants. :)

That flight attendant gives me hope. If, by some miracle, you're reading this, then I just have one thing to say to you: Thank you. I'm in therapy and taking medication for depression, and you made me genuinely smile for the first time in a long time. Oh, and I was the weirdo with the baggy anime T-shirt, rumpled hair, and glasses.

Blessed Be,
~Beyond

Views: 34

Comment by Morningstar on January 2, 2011 at 11:42am
What a wonderful experience. I have had a few brushes with fellow pagans in public places in the last couple of years. I have moved to a very small town in the Bible Buckle aka Texas. As you can imagine there are not many of us out in public here. I am a member of a public group in Dallas but very quiet here. So when the checker at Wal-Mart saw a ring I had on and greeted me with Blessed Be. I was stunned. I could tell she was being very careful so I responded carefully. I have begun to feel easer about looking for and responding to other pagans I see in and around our community. We are out there and it does feel very good to have someone see & recognize us for who and what we are.
My Husband and I were walking our dogs in a local cemetery when we found a very pagan grave marker for a husband and wife. Wow, it was great to see. Even though we don’t know the people buried there I take small remembrances to the grave on the quarters & solstices. I don’t know them but I can honor them.
Blessings and Keep Smiling
MorningStar / Linda
Comment by Adam Labonoski on January 2, 2011 at 8:55pm
Isn't it wonderful!? If there is one thing that I advocate, it is that people need to stop hiding. There is nothing to be ashamed of.
Comment by SilverFeathyr on January 4, 2011 at 1:47am
Wow. That's beautiful! Yes, we are everywhere and need to come "out of the broom closet" aleady and take our rightful place alongside other religions. The more we are open about who we are, our beliefs, etc. with others, the more others will feel comfortable asking us questions and maybe we can stop the fear. I'm lucky, I've hardly ever felt a need to disclose my religion on a very discriminating basis, but it has happened. And it's nice when we can finally stand out and say a simple "Merry Meet" or "BB" to others.
Comment by Daciera Drift on January 5, 2011 at 10:32pm
The same story kinda happened with me in the woods previously! It is a wonderful feeling to say that and get it back in return :D

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