I have been working with a small group for the past few years now. We started meeting regularly with another group for the interaction. The one thing that I see that is different from other areas/locations where I have been involved is the unwillingness of practitioners to be sportive of other faiths and searchers.
The way I was taught, is to be helpful to those that need it. Not cast them out or turn them away for the lack of knowledge. So I am asking: does Idaho still have such a strong dislike for the "pagan" arts? from Pagans and Christians alike?
If others in Idaho, North and South, have similar issues?
If so, how do "you" deal with it. If not, how do "you" avoid it?
Do you agree or disagree with the responsibility to help those that are lost in the Idaho Pagan community? and Why?
I realize lil activity happens on here so I am trying to get a motion going in Idaho. Please join me by responding. No pool rules, lets splash and make waves in our corner of the pool.
Born and raised in the Rigby, Rexburg, St Anthony, Idaho Falls area, I worked for the department of energy at the INEL for over 20 years. I had a side business of photography and a Pagan, Esoteric and Metaphysical Shop for over 4 years. It was extremely difficult to get people out of the closet in that area of Idaho. When I got laid off at the site, I decided to pursue the Esoteric shop full time, but moved it to the coast of Oregon at Florence. Florence was a tourist town and it was surprising to see that a lot of my good buying customers were from Idaho. Those that vacationed in the Oregon coast area from Idaho, it became one of their priorities to stop at my shop in Florence.
It was extremely difficult owning a pagan shop in the Idaho Falls area because of such a fanatical and delusional Mormon community, which made it even more difficult for the shop. In doing market research, there were tons of people who wanted a shop like mine in Idaho Falls, but after setting it up, they would never come shop at the store. Even after carrying the products they wanted. This was one of the reasons for moving the business to Oregon where it is much more open minded and a large pagan community, even though they are also hard to get out of the woodwork.
People should not fear being pagan. No one religion has the right to claim superiority over any other religion or person, and it was an pleasure to have Christians visit the shop because of them trying to satisfy their curiosity. In reality pagan and shamanic practices are far more accurate than Christian beliefs. It was far more difficult contending with the Red Neck cowboy mentality that refused to learn than it was dealing with Christian fanatics.
I was force to close the store front because of a bad economy and moving the business to a different town that should have been better in sales.
The shop may be down but not out because I am researching starting it up again in a different location and still operate it from a website. So this is also an marketing and feasibility inquire as if there is enough to support it in the Idaho area.
I would like to give Idaho Falls another go at it, mainly as an attempt to move back closer to family.
So let us wake up those who are in hiding in the Idaho area and give me your thoughts.
Peace and Bright Blessings.
@ Luna Tala,
This is exactly what i was talking about. Nail on the head! I find so many want a shop, or sanctuary or something ....something to start moving but then when someone or a group does everyone runs and hides. It is frustrating in the least. Im so sorry your first store was not supported enough in its first run.
I myself moved from Portland / Vancouver area to CDA / Post falls and it was a big shock to see the amount of "closets". I have seen many shops come and go here. And yet not a week goes by someone tells me they wish a shop was in town. If you DO end up back in that area with a shop please let me know, Ill send as many practitioners your way as I can.
This is a good start. Anyone else?
I took a trip from this last week from CDA to Challis. It is interesting how Montana has more than any of the Idaho towns combined that i traveled through. I met a few people along the way that had many questions and wanted to know more of the "Old" ways. From Native to old world. I was sticking out like a sore thumb with my stile of dressing and all my stones and such "on display" as it was put to me on the trip. The need and desire is present, now we need to fill the order. I know quite a few people and now Luna is counted in this ( :) hope thats ok) that are willing to take a leap of faith and get something going.... who else, how would we like to see this happen?
Thank you, Many Blessings
I live in Sandpoint. We also have had many shops come and go. At the same time many shops no matter the theme come and go around here. It is very difficult for any shop to say open. I can't say that it is from people totally hiding or a lack of tolerance here, but the shops are always so expensive that locals can't afford to shop at them. Everything is geared toward tourists. I can't even shop downtown.
I only know one other person in person that might label herself pagan.
I have never been able to meet anyone. It is kinda sad. I would enjoy discussing & sharing with others face to face or in a way that you actually get to know one another.
i was a part of the 2nd try of NIP- North Idaho Pagans, and we had a few ppl from sandpoint but they had similar thoughts. I think maybe not a group but a safe place for pagans to be able to visit face to face with others is drastically needed, and yes affordable too. ive been talking around and have found a few ppl that have some awesome ideas for bringing a pagan spin to the area. a coffee/tea and book store and as side projects a true to form metaphysical shop. im helping in every way and as it happens ill keep you updated.
i have started working on this for North Idaho, the CDA/SP areas and anything you all want to see please let me know so i can pass on ur requests to the master minds. they are finding it hard to know what to do with limited input.
Also working on getting pagan clergy more active in the area so if you know any get them talking and lets see the changes we want!
I was on NIP also. I wasn't very active on it as I didn't have regular internet access at the time. I don't know what kind of shop might do well here as any kind of shop never seems to last very long. My mom and I had thought about opening a shop before but were unable too.
I am not formally trained as clergy and don't consider myself to be clergy but I am legally able to preform marriages in the state of Idaho.
I am interested in being more active in the pagan community and getting to know some people.
I lived in the Coeur d' Alene/Post Falls area when I was a child, then my family moved to the Reno, Nevada area. My husband and I moved up in April. Having just recently moved to the Silver Valley/Kellogg area, I thought it was interesting how much Pagan activity there is NOT going on. Not even a whisper - although I have to say I hadn't been looking very hard, as I mostly am solitary.
Just for giggles, I even looked through the local telephone books for anything that seemed likely as far as a metaphysical store goes. Nada, although there are loads of Christian bookstores. I'm thinking that part of the problem is the fact there are so many online stores now, plus the economy of the times. I know that a lot of the pagan community in Nevada was also pretty limited financially, but I don't know if that is the problem here.
It sounds as though the pagan community in northern Nevada is more active, but it's also crazier; quite a few with obvious issues, (mental/emotional/spiritual), that jumped into Paganism, (read a book, became a high priest/priestess/shaman), because the community was so open to accepting everyone. It left me with a bad taste in my mouth, and a real hesitation to talk with many people about my beliefs. I'm not saying that is the reason for the lack of support here in Idaho, because I don't know all the ins and outs - just adding a thought.
I am interested in hearing what groups and activities are going on, although being out in Silver Valley may make it hard for me to get to anything. Being in touch is a start.
Here in Idaho Falls, we do have one good shop. It's called Shaddow Domain. It's really wonderful, and not too expensive.
I think a lot of the hiding happens in Idaho because of the other mainstream religion that stands out here. Many "Pagans" that I meet seem to be doing it to shock the community or they are part of the other side that is working so hard to prove they're a Pagan that it's tough to be around them.
I also believe they're unsupportive because that's how people are raised religiously in this area. I remember moving here in my teens and always being asked if I was Mormon first. Not my name, where I was from....it was always "Are you Mormon?" When kids are taught to choose friends based on religion and how hard they work to be perfect at that religion, then that doctrination moves into all facets of their life.
This area is so different on so many levels from almost any other area in the world.
As Susan has said there is nothing in Kellogg. There is an herb/aromatherapy store in town but the prices are way too high. Then I think Wallace has a candle/incense shop. I grew up around Coeur d Alene and I actually had a few shops that I took for granted because I was young. We had Gateway Gardens and Ramblin Rose. Then a couple that didn't last long. Unique and Unusual was awesome. My sister, Mom, and I would visit often even if we weren't shopping. We would just visit with the owner. When he went out of business he gave me and my family a huge discount. That is where I got most of my supplies. Herbs, incense, stones, books, and tarot cards. Then there was a store called Celtic Moon that I actually didn't get to visit that much as I never had money to spend. I have heard of a store called Ancient Answers in Post Falls but I don't know if that is still in business.
I have had a hard time living in Idaho with religious people and even some other Pagans. I have found that no matter what faith, religion, age, gender, or race that everyone can be rude, mean, and just as nasty as anyone else. When I lived in Moscow for a while there was this one time that I was shopping at a craft store and while checking out the cashier asked me if I was aware what the pentacle meant that I was wearing. I have never been asked something like that so directly and negatively that it threw me through a loop. All I could answer was yes. I worked at a library and I got lots of questions about my pentacle but all were polite and I was happy to answer them.
These days I get more grief from my pink hair!
I'm Kohana, I was born and raised in Wichita Ks. I moved to the Sliver Valley and then CDA for a little over a year. I looked a little into the pagan community but when I didn't find much, I abandoned it. I did meet a woman who seemed to be pagan but she converted to Mormon and moved. Then of course, I moved back to Ks for family reasons. Now I'm back and have been looking again for pagan communities. I was contacted by a nice girl and it's through her that I found this site.
I don't know if living in a big city has any impact, but I've noticed in general, that most people up here are standoffish where as in Wichita people are a little more 'involved'. And because of that and and my own general shyness, I haven't really 'gotten out much'. I don't know many people outside of my girlfriend's family and friends. The family I don't discuss pagan arts with and our friends are generally more interested in politics than anything else.
I do agree with the responsibility to help others but not just in the pagan community. Isn't better to help some one when you can and are able than not to?
I don't think it is a strong dislike but people are still in the closet. I'm in Twin Falls and when we get any kind of wiccan/pagan shop it gets closed down. So I think most people just don't come out. I avoid it by not speaking of it. Only close friends and my husband know. My family who are active Catholics (not I) don't even know. I agree that we need to help each other in anyway we can. Not sure if this post is what you are looking for but it is early in the morning and my brain isn't functioning yet.
I think this is awesome! Good luck with your speech and if your teacher gives you an F, then she/he is not a good teacher because in this case they should be grading about technique, points, and delivery more rather than content.
We just had a run in with the LDS this yesterday. I'm becoming quite sick of them. Despite telling them that we are very happy and comfortable in what we believe not once, twice, but three times they still persisted. They just won't quit, and don't seem to understand that No, means No.