There is a thing I am struggling with somewhat, bear with me, I'm finding it a bit of a challenge to adequately put words around.
In our modern world, we have this tendency to find amusement in old fashioned things. Old ways of doing stuff. Well, some stuff. I am rather old-fashioned in my crafts, I don't just knit and crochet (which has my husband referring to me as a Nana) but I also spin and weave. What I'm talking about though is different.
Medicine for example. While herbalism has a fairly steady following, we'd fall about laughing if someone suggested bleeding us to cure a headache, flu or any other illness.
Technology is another, who writes letters any more? Remember the old dial phones that were hard wired into the wall wherever the installer decided to put it when the house was built. And having to wait up to a month for a line to become free when you moved somewhere. I'm not quite old enough to remember party lines, but I do remember growing up on an Air Force base where we had to dial 2 before calling anyone off base and had to add three digits to our four digit phone numbers for anyone outside to call us. Two tv channels and they finished at 10pm when you got either static or a test picture after that.
In so many ways, the old ways of doing things are met with a fond nostalgia, but little interest in returning to that way of life for any length of time.
It seems that for anything in Paganism to have value, it has to be old. It requires some amount of antiquity and tradition to be right or valid.
Technopagans are a source of amusement and ridicule.
Fairly recently, I saw someone saying not to bother with any occult book written in the last 50 years. And it was widely agreed with.
I'm trying though, to understand why this is. Why is it that Pagans who will happily spend hours on the internet doing their research will scorn LED tea-light candles? Anyone doing anything overly new, or trying to create something new is met with derision and snark.
There is a woman I know online, I won't refer to her as a friend, who swears by The Egyptian Secrets of Albertus Magnus, an old spell book of vague provenance. It is available here for anyone who is interested by the way. She claims to use the medicinal spells from it as her "go to" quite frequently. I have been left wondering how she's getting along with all the white lead and mercury and praying over wounds although maybe that would explain a few things.
I mentioned to someone that I've been reading a number of these old spell books and their eyes lit up, "Oh, I would be very interested in reading that", right up until I tell them the websites where they are freely available and public domain. As if being available to everyone who knows how to use Google somehow tainted them.
Suggest a modern spellbook and most of them roll their eyes. They assume someone is making all sorts of crap up to cash in on beginners and new agers.
Many of the Witchcraft histories that I've also been reading suggest that Cunningfolk used whatever worked. When something new came along, they'd learn and incorporate it if it was useful - not sneer at it as being "not traditional". This is why circle casting is now such a core part of modern pagan practise - even though it came from Christian Ceremonial magic.
I don't understand this. I don't get it. Why does something have to be traditional to have value?