Is it normal to be embarrassed about my religion?

I’m an 18 year old male, and I’ve been Pagan for just over a year now. Technically I’ve been practicing witchcraft and had pagan beliefs since I was very young, but I only recently dedicated myself to my faith. The deities I worship and the things I practice are extremely important to me and my daily life (I even wear a necklace with a pentacle on it), but I’m horribly embarrassed about it and I feel uncomfortable telling anybody that I believe in any of this stuff.

For context, I was raised atheistic/agnostic but some of my family have always been superstitious/spiritual in various ways. I live in an accepting area where there are many other people who follow similar beliefs very openly, so I’m in no danger with my faith.

Is It Normal?
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  • I dont think most people are too comfortable talking about their personal beliefs.

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  • You're doing something different - it's normal to feel embarrassed when you stand out. If someone judges you badly for your religious beliefs, it say more about them than it does you (as cliche as it is, it really is true).

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  • Sure, totally normal to be embarrassed by anything you do that other people don't understand, like, or practice, and it's typically due to their reaction. Obviously that should not deter you from being true to yourself, what you want to do, or what you believe in. Most just succumb to being sheeple, feed off the energy of the will of the collective masses, and don't follow their own path. It's a tough personal journey to be on the road to "not caring what other people think". Your embarrassment will go away as you get better at it. Good for you for doing as you wish and trying to come to terms with the crap that society throws in our path as we exercise our free will. Confidence in yourself and what you believe in is a great thing to work towards.

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    • This was a surprisingly kind response, coming from this website. Thank you for your encouragement.

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  • What pantheon do you follow?

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    • Part Greek, but mostly I follow a sun and moon deity of my own. They're similar to how Wiccans describe their sun and moon deities, but definitely different. Other than that I pay tribute to a few Greek or Japanese deities.

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  • Yeah if I believed something that fucking retarded I would be quite ashamed. Probably a lot more ashamed than you. Normal.

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    • It's only as retarded as any other religion.

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      • Nahh some are def worse than others

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        • Ok, that's true. But people who think Wicca is stupid just because it isn't the accepted standard religion that everyone follows are stupid themselves. Plus Wicca is one of the least crazy religions when it comes to arbitrary beliefs of morality, every other religion say it's immoral to do something as harmless as have sex before marriage and stuff like that, but Wicca specifically states that you can do what you want as long as it doesn't harm anyone.

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          • Yeah it's all a mess. I don't know the specific one OP is talking about so I can't rank it specifically among other ones. At least its not against premarital sex tho, that's a win!

            Anyways, I mostly agree with your point that what OP believes isn't much worse than what most people believe ect

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  • While my religon tells me to burn you at the stake, we also live in America, so be proud of your religon! Just remember, in the third world I would have killed you for saying that!

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  • You don't mention whether you have any contact with people who share your beliefs: if you're practising them entirely alone it's not surprising you feel vulnerable to the opinions of others.

    I followed Wicca and Goddess religions for a while decades back and eventually decided it was all just as much a fantasy as any other religion, but certainly Wicca is less harmful than mainstream religions.

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  • All religions are basically entertainment really.

    Think of this - There is this stigma about most religions. Like when you haven't met someone yet and someone tells you "oh so and so is a christian". Suddenly there is a vibe of, "Oh, one of THOSE people."

    So you meet them and there is this weird tension cause you cannot say "god damnit" in front of them or relax, plus you are braced for some BS lecture about "Finding the Lord".

    I always wondered why people suddenly decide to become righteous only when trying ti break a chemical addiction or they ended up in prison or whatever.

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  • Pagan as in as sacrificing animals and or worshiping the tree gods/spirits/imps/fairies? I mean you are still gonna catch a lot of shit from all sides.

    Nothing wrong with being plain toast agnostic. Feels like some agnostics want to feel individualistic with their agnostic beliefs by mixing in weird combinations such as spiritual hexes and all that into the trail mix of religion.

    As an soft agnostic it might be possible to determine what god is in the future. Wether it's a omniscient being or the fundamental rules of the universe. Whatever started the universe in the first place is by default god. Though if the universe is just an infinite loop of events happening because of how we experience time, than I'll default to the laws of physics as god.

    Though personally I hope theres something after this life. No point in believing in nothing if this is just it. It's not interesting nor calming to belive in non exsistance after death.

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    • Thats not pagan! Thats heathen. Loool

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    • Hahah no, not at all. Pagan is just a general term for religions or paths that don't really fit traditional boundaries. My faith is peaceful. But I agree on the last part.

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      • I know pagan is just the non Christian label but when most people think pagan they think of the barbaric north europe. Most of those religions have been dead of centuries. Only being kept alive by traditions rather than it being a mode of faith. Only now people are reviving them because they want to be lil rebels going outside norms. Which is just opening yourself to bulling for no reason.

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        • I'm personally not doing this just to be different or anything like that. I've been taught the basic concepts of traditional pagan religions since I was very young, due to who my family is. I mostly follow my beliefs just cause it makes me feel good. I don't see how anybody could think I'm doing this for attention or anything if I'm not telling anybody to begin with

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          • I'm not accusing you are I'm just stating there has been a revamp in spiritual shit lately like healing crystals and humors therapy. Believe whatever you want. Its just my two cents on the philosophy.

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  • What you're feeling is perfectly normal, and it's the reason organised religions exist. No deity has any objective reality, and so believers have always banded together to seek mutual validation and support in a world where rationalists call them out on the irrationality of their beliefs, while those who have a different set of irrational beliefs mock or attack them for not belonging to their club.

    If your syncretic paganism satisfies an internal need at this point in your life and it's not leading you to do anything harmful to yourself or others, that's fine. It's a fundamental human right to believe whatever we want, no matter how absurd others may find those beliefs. As long as our beliefs don't result in us feeling we have a monopoly on Truth and we are therefore entitled to restrict the rights of others to believe and live as they choose, our explanations of the meaning of life and the forces at work in the cosmos should be of no concern to anyone else.

    I've always found those who feel the need to display a symbol of their religious beliefs just as weird and pathetic as those who get a tattoo of their favourite band or people who wear a MAGA cap or some other political symbol. If one truly believes in something, there's no need to wear a brand, since actions will always speak much louder than a trinket around your neck or a few milligrams of ink under your epidermis.

    There's also no need for you to explain or try to justify your beliefs to others. Personally, I think it's all a load of hooey, but like I've said, you have the right to believe that there are fairies living under the bushes in your local park or that you have a personal relationship with Aristaeus if you so choose. If I knew you IRL, I wouldn't be any more interested in hearing about this than I am in listening to what the Jehovah's Witnesses have to say when they knock on my door.

    I wonder if the main source of your embarrassment is that, deep down, you're rational enough to know that the pantheon you've constructed is just as much of a fairytale as every other religion.

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    • Don't forget the deep down realization that people kill each other over disagreements about what exists in the afterlife, and then fail to see the irony of it all.

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    • I greatly appreciate how well articulated your comment is. I agree with a lot of it. On the last note, I do feel that partly. In my perspective, there's about a 50/50 chance that what I believe is real or fake. But in essence, I don't care. I used to avoid all belief systems/superstition on the grounds that it couldn't be proved, and therefore wasn't worth my time. But now I'm more of the opinion that as long as I enjoy i t and I'm not hurting anybody, which I'm not, then there's no reason for me not to indulge. But, it's still embarrassing.

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  • Why would you feel bad telling others about your faith? Most religions want you to spread the word to others.

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    • It's not an organized religion at all, it's entirely my own faith. Others have similar beliefs, but I'm alone in my exact practice. But I'm mostly just embarrassed by the fact that I believe in any of it at all. It makes me extremely upset when people joke about my beliefs or don't take any of it as seriously as me. It just feels like nobody can really ever understand what any of it means to me, especially since all my friends have only ever known me as an athiest/agnostic who never took religion seriously before now.

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      • I dont understand why its anyones business. Why do you tell anyone about this religion? Just keep it to yourself.

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        • Well, I'd like those closest to me (significant other, close friends) to know about this stuff, at least slightly, since it's so important to me. I don't intend to preach to people or anything like that, or go into detail about my beliefs, but I'd like them to at least know that this part of me exists and is important. It's hard for me to tell anybody though.

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  • If there are others who share common beliefs, I wouldn’t be ashamed.

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  • If you're ashamed of it then it means you think there's something wrong with it, and therefore you do not even believe it for what it is but just to act like a different emo kid kind of.

    People that truly believe in something do not feel ashamed about it. Basically, you're a fony.

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