Neo-Paganism Timeline: 21st century

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[Note: Dates in the same year are not listed in chronological order.]

21st Century

2001: Victor Anderson dies.

2001: The term “fluffy” (later “fluffybunny”) is popularized by the author of the internet essay, “Why Wiccans Suck”. The essay is little more than a personal rant against non-traditionalism, eclecticism, and sloppy-thinking among Wiccans. However, the term caught on, and now a debate continues in the Wiccan community over what is really Wiccan and what is “fluffy”. In general, the epithet “fluffy” is applied to portrayals of Wicca that have been watered down to make it palatable for mass (or teen) consumption.

2001: Jerry Falwell puts the blame for the 9-11 attacks on Pagans, abortionists, feminists, gays and lesbians, the ACLU and others.

2002: The Complete Idiot’s Guide To … Paganism is published.

2002: Rev. Angie Buchanan, director of Gaia’s Womb, is elected to the Board of Trustees for for the Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions, one of the most respected interfaith organizations in the world. In 2006, Andra Corban-Arthen, director of the EarthSpirit Community was elected. Then in 2009, Phyllis Currot, pagan author and attorney was elected.

2002: Australian Census figures show rapid growth of Wicca and Paganism. Wiccans in Australia grew from fewer than 2,000 in 1996 to nearly 9,000 in 2001. The number of Pagans more than doubled over the same interval to 10,632. Most of the major Christian denominations lost followers over the same period.

2002: In June, modern organized devotion to Antinous under its own rubric begins with the foundation of the Ecclesia Antinoi by Tony Subia, P. Sufenas Virius Lupus, and Sadaaya; the first Foundation Day ritual on October 30th (the date of the original foundation of Antinous’ cultus in 130 CE) occurs simultaneously in Los Angeles, Chicago, and Cork, Ireland with the three founders and a small group of people of various other (as well as no) religions.

2002: The UN Earth Summit is held in Johannesburg.

2003: Canada releases religious data from the 2001 census which shows that Wiccans and other Pagans experienced the greatest percentage growth of all religions in the country. They numbered 21,080 members in 2001, an increase of 281% between 1991 and 2001. The percentage of Canadians identifying with Christianity dropped from 90% in 1981 to 72% in 2001 — about one percentage point per year. This drop is almost exactly the same as for the U.S.

2003: The Druid Network is organized in the UK to promote Druidry as a religion.

2004: The Wild Hunt blog is relaunched by Jason Pitzl-Waters and becomes the lead voice for analysis and insight into how modern Pagan faiths are represented within the mainstream media.

2004: Joseph Wilson dies.

2004: “Episcopagan” controversy breaks out when Glyn Ruppe-Melnyk and her husband W. William Melnyk, two Episcopalian ministers, were outed as members of a Druidic group after Ruppe-Melnyk submitted a rite to the Episcopal Church’s Women’s Ministries website called “A Women’s Eucharist”.

2004: Alta Mira Press launches the Pagan Studies series with Researching Paganisms, to be followed by Chas Clifton’s Her Hidden Children in 2006 and Barbara Davy’s An Introduction to Pagan Studies in 2007.

2005: An Indiana trial judge that prohibited divorced parents, both of whom were Wiccan, from exposing their nine year old son to “non-mainstream religious beliefs and rituals” is overturned on appeal.

2005: Bron Taylor publishes the 1900-page Encylopedia of Religion and Nature with over 250 contributors.

2006: Margot Adler publishes her revised edition of Drawing Down the Moon.

2006: An Inconvenient Truth premiers about former United States Vice President Al Gore’s campaign to educate citizens about global warming via a comprehensive slide show.

2007: Cherry Hill Seminary is granted tax-exempt status. The seminary had been conducting online classes since 2000. It now offers several graduate degrees, certificates, and courses for general interest.

2007: The US Veteran’s Administration approves the pentacle as a symbol on headstones for fallen soldiers in military cemeteries. The pentacle becomes #37 on the list of approved religious symbols.

2007: In June, after theological difficulties with the original group caused a schism, the Ekklesía Antínoou is formed from the Ecclesia Antinoi by P. Sufenas Virius Lupus and a group of collaborators. Both groups and their associated traditions continue to the present.

2007: James Hansen identifies 350 parts-per-million (ppm) of CO2 in the atmosphere as the safe upper limit to avoid a climate tipping point.

2009: The Sacred Paths Center opens in Minnesota. At the time, it was the only full-time non-profit Pagan community center in the U.S.

2009: Ehoah (an offshoot of RDNA) is founded by Rua Lupa.

2009: James Cameron’s film Avatar appears in theaters. Set in the future on a lush planet occupied by aliens called the Na’vi. The Na’vi dwell in trees,  live in harmony with nature, and worship a goddess called Eywa, who is identical with the planet itself. The Na’vi are threatened by the imperialistic and militarily advanced humans who want to mine the planet.

2009: “The National Parks: America’s best idea”, a multi-part documentary, airs on public television.

2010: Mary Daly dies. She was the author of The Church and the Second Sex, Beyond God the Father, and Gyn/Ecology.

2010: Isaac Bonewits dies.

2010: The New Jersey Board of Education is the first to accept Pagan holidays as excused absences.

2010: Brendan Myers and Jason Pitzl-Waters lead the way in creating a Pagan Community Statement on Sexual Abuse.

2010: Deepwater Horizon is the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry.

2011: Merline Stone, author of When God Was a Woman, dies.

2011: Debates surrounding transgender inclusiveness in Pagan spaces marks the beginning of a shift in Pagan consciousness of gender issues.

2011: World human population reaches 7 billion.

2011: The Fukushima nuclear reactor melt-down.

2012: A druid liturgy is included in the 2012 London Paralumpic Games closing ceremony.

09. Transgender Inclusion In Modern Paganism: For two years running, the issue of gender, and transgender inclusion in designated women-only spaces, has sparked debate, protest, and remarkable shifts within the Pagan community. – See more at:

2013: Wicca and Paganism leave the Occult/New Age/Mind-Body-Spirit section of bookstore and move to the Religion section following a change in how the books are coded.

2013: Thor’s Hammer is approved for use on military headstones and grave markers.

2013: Lady Olivia Robertson dies.

Thor’s Hammer Approved for Use On Military Headstones and Grave Markers: “In 2007, after a decade-long struggle, Pagan and Wiccan organizations succeeded in getting the Pentacle approved for military veteran headstones and markers. After that victory, in July of 2007, a rally was held to start the push for two more symbols: the Druid Awen and the Heathen Thor’s Hammer. Two Heathen organizations, The Troth and the Asatru Folk Assembly, were represented at that rally, and from it a wider movement to get the Thor’s Hammer approved emerged. Now, after a six-year journey which included some inter-organizational tensions within the Heathen community and a U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs rule change, it appears the symbol has finally been approved.” More on how this came about here. Quote: “We know that the listing went up on May 2nd, and thanks to a statement sent to The Wild Hunt from the Guardian of The Northern Winds Hearth we now know the circumstances of the emblem’s approval.” – See more at:

2014: Morning Glory-Zell dies.

2014: Judy Harrow dies.

2014: Margot Adler dies.

2014: The Covenant of the Goddess publishes a formal position statement on the environment.


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