e-fame, guys. It’s not good.
Here’s the thing. Sometimes people in the pagan community become super popular. Shit happens. That’s how communities work. Sometimes they’re really great people and you like them and get along with them so they develop quite a following. Let’s say…let’s say this happens to me. For instance. So a bunch of people decide they like me (because they clearly have weird-ass tastes) and I wind up with a bunch of groupies. Okay.
But then a phenomenon begins to occur. After a while, when I say the sky is blue because it’s made out of blueberries, all my groupies will go "oh, Solo said that, Solo’s awesome, it must be true, the sky must be made out of blueberries." And maybe one or two people will go “Hey wait, I don’t think that’s accurate, I’m pretty sure the sky is blue because of the direction the sunlight filters through minuscule air particles here’s a really detailed and reasonable explanation.” And the groupies will, en masse, jump on this person and attack them for questioning the Great and Infallible Solo, because poor Solo is so wise and strong for standing up to those meanies who would criticize her or question her perfection.
And that’s bullshit. Because the sky is not made out of blueberries.
And it’s great that you like the Great and Infallible Solo, and your loyalty to your friend is really, really admirable, but the Great and Infallible Solo is NOT infallible. And sometimes I get shit academically wrong. And sometimes I’m in a pissy mood and respond unfairly to someone and in that case I am morally wrong.
And you know what really proves my point?
I’m using myself as an example here because if I use any of the several people that actually match this description, their followers will attack me for questioning the Great and Infallible insert-user-here. They just might anyway. Watch. It will happen.
And that is exactly what I mean.
NO ONE is infallible. Even the most experienced person gets shit wrong or makes mistakes, both in what they know and in how they behave. It’s not their fault. They’re human. But when you worship a blogger as a fucking God (literally, in some cases) you cripple your ability to actually judge anything they’re saying.
So I need you to promise me something.
Promise me you will never, ever treat me like that. Promise me that whatever I say, however I say it, however many resources I pull out of my ass to cite for it, and however many followers I have when I say it, you will take that statement and go back to your corner and look at it for a bit.
And I need you to promise me you’ll take that statement and turn it over and around in your head, and I need you to use your critical thinking skills and really analyze it, and I need you to ask yourself "Okay, if this came from anyone else, would this still seem reasonable? Would I think this was true if it came from an anonymous ask instead of the Great and Infallible Solo?"
And if the answer is no, and you realize that my statement only seems perfect because of how much you like me, I need you to come back and call me on my shit immediately.
And then I need you to promise to treat absolutely anything anyone else says the exact same way. Your ability to critically analyze other people’s statements is your last line of defense. Don’t surrender that for the sake of a worthless thing like someone else’s popularity.
And I’m going to challenge everyone in this community who’s managed to somehow become a Tumblr celebrity to ask their users to do the same thing for them. I dare you to ask them. Because you know damn well whether you’re one of the people at risk for what I’ve described in this post. And you know damn well it’s wrong.
Because we’re Pagans, damn it.
We don’t have a Pope.
None of us is the Great and Infallible Voice of God.