Fluffy Bunnies and the New Age/Pagan Connection
A few years ago I became curious about Paganism. My personal beliefs were changing and I wondered if there was a branch of Paganism that fit with the direction my spiritual path was taking. I believed in the power of manifestation through intent and felt it was similar to practicing magick—that essentially; it was the definition of magick.
I bought a few books about Paganism to better understand what it was. I didn’t buy anything deep, opting instead to simply start with a definition. I ended up with more questions than answers. Now is probably a good time to mention, that I do not identify as Pagan—at least not yet.
So I could put a face to the religion, I turned to YouTube and sadly regretted it. Within minutes I discovered the term “fluffy bunny” and was immediately turned off. The term means different things to different folks, but the gist of it is that fluffy bunnies are witches that do not take the craft seriously. What “seriously” means is really the part that differs between Pagans. It’s often used to identify someone who is new to the practice but may also describe someone who dresses in faddish attire (think, The Craft) or who is exploring roll play rather than spirituality (I argue that there is some natural progression here). Some definitions conflict entirely; fluffy can describe someone whose practice does not match certain stereotypes, or the opposite; a witch who follows a popular path like Wicca (See The Four Queens video below for more about why Wiccans may be called fluffy by some other Pagans). What pushed me over the edge were the anti-New Age Pagans; individuals who spoke out against New Agers for their often positive demeanor and proclivity toward light-working. New Age isn’t a religion, it’s really more of a catch-all, a way that some people self-identify because they don’t really know what else to call themselves. I was New Age and I was not welcome in the Pagan community.
Three years ago there were a ton of videos dissuading the curious from Paganism through negative (and sometimes combative) rhetoric. I remember saying out loud as I looked into the faces of frustrated 19 year old boys and girls, “These are not my people.” I was in my 30s, married and trying to conceive. I had a well-established career, a tight network of family and friends, and mortgage and responsibilities. I had no drama. I didn’t necessarily want a religion, but I wanted to put a framework in place to help me organize my spiritual beliefs. I did not find it in online Pagan community.
The Changing Face of Paganism
Fast-forward a few years and a whole lot has changed. I’ve continued to read up on various Pagan groups and continue to find many synchronicities between our beliefs. I began revisiting online Pagan and New Age communities for inspiration and education and found that the language has taken a complete turn. The pendulum swingith the other way, as I say. I rarely come across the term “fluffy bunny” anymore, and when I do, it’s by Pagans who are critical of the term. It’s considered a ridiculous, ignorant expression in direct contrast to what most Pagans feel about honoring individuality and personal expression in their spiritual practice. There seems to be more respect for the spiritual journey and an emerging understanding of the great many ways individuals find inspiration. I mentioned earlier that roll play or dressing the part may be part of the process for some. There are many among us that would rather die than find out their child is a Pagan. If said child tests the waters with a little eyeliner then so be it. We are complicated souls who reinvent ourselves as our beliefs and priorities change in life. The process of change is necessary and valid and can’t be successful with tasting from many plates. If fluffy describes someone who is exploring their spirituality, even casually, then it shouldn’t come with such disapproval.
The greatest transformation is not in the beliefs of the Pagan community but rather in the many voices adding to the dialog. Search for Pagan video blogs now and you’ll find more than angsty teenagers with an ax to grind. You’ll find people of all ages, races and backgrounds. You’ll find teenagers too; thoughtful, open-minded young people with great insights to share.
I should be clear, that my observations are mine only. I have no in-person contact with Pagan groups and have no idea what kinds of conversations are happening in covens. My contact is all online, through bloggers, online communities and YouTube. It’s only a sampling of the larger Pagan community, but this more welcoming approach has renewed my interest once again.
When I went on YouTube today to find some of those old negative videos I couldn’t find them. I’m sure they are still out there, but they’ve been buried by so many inspiring witch vlogs, I decided to abandon my search and share some Pagan inspiration for those of you have been called a fluffy bunny or whose curiosities have been discouraged in the past. I don’t know if I’ll ever identify as Pagan, but I can’t deny a connection with their beliefs, ideals and community.
Harmony Love’s perspective on Fluffy Bunnies.
I have found more inspiration from Kelly, from The Four Queens than probably any other Pagan out there. She is Awesome Sauce! Here is her video discussing Fluffy Bunnies: