• 14 October, 1999Counting since:
  • 879986Total site visitors:
  • 15Visitors today:
  • 0Visitors currently online:
  • 2880Visitors to this post:

Current Moon Phase

La Lune

My Tweets

Subscribe to the Journal

Enter your email address to subscribe to Erin's Journal and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Member of The Pagan Webcrafter's Association. The RSS feed for this site!
HomeBeginning Wicca, My Articles What Makes a Fluffbunny?


What Makes a Fluffbunny?

Erin

More and more recently, there has come a term that is making more of the serious-minded Pagan sit up an take notice: Fluff Bunnies.

There are other names, Playgan, Wicabes, Wiclets, witchypooh, **New Term** Wictim (defined as a Wiccan Victim, or one of those who thinks the Inquisition is still going on) and so on, all of which do the same basic thing; All these names reveal a deep-seated dislike for those who take the religion of Wicca and Paganism less than seriously.

What are the symptoms of this dread condition, you may ask?

1) Aversion to research.

This is probably the most serious symptom. When this symptom manifests itself, the afflicted person tends to read something in a popular book, email list, newsgroup or website and take it as the literal truth, without checking facts. It’s worse when combined with blind trust of the so-called “elders” who have silly names like “High Lady Stuffandnonsense” or “Lady MoonroseHaven”. Their names literally sound like they came out of a Pagan Name Generator and are begging for ridicule.

Basically, Lady Stuffandnonsense decides to write an article about the healing qualities of Foxglove and throws down on the article all that she knows about the plant, without ever bothering to look anything up. Thus, you have an article that talks about the soporific qualities of Foxglove, how beautiful the flowers are, and how magically it can be used to help the person sleep. A tea may be included in the recipe to allow the person reading it to have a good night’s sleep.

Here’s the problem: Foxglove is a poison. It’s known as Digitalis, and is used in minute qualities as a way of preventing heart attacks. Does High Lady Stuffandnonsense know this? She may, but since she doesn’t write it down, the people reading this post don’t know it. Do they look up the facts on this plant? No, they trust the information Lady Stuffandnonsense has put down and would never dream of questioning it. What happens?

Someone who actually knows what Foxglove is who reads the same list, takes it upon themselves to correct many of the misconceptions and inaccurate statements in the article, including that it’s a poisonous substance and should only be used by someone who knows what they are doing. The other people who are reading this list, who have not seen this person post before, get upset at the supposed “attack” of the second poster upon Lady Stuffandnonsense and decide to make a few dozen (thousand) cutting remarks about the second poster.

Now, at this juncture, Lady Stuffandnonsense could dissolve the entire problem by checking with a few online pharmacopoeias or herbals, and discovering that the second poster is right, correcting her own facts and moving on. Is this what happens? No. That would require work.

It’s far easier for High Lady Stuffandnonsense to write another article making disparaging comments about the second poster, and to cite her years of knowledge that have been accumulated by her ancestors and how this is all out of her family’s hand written book of Shadows which has been passed down for the last 4 centuries to her. It’s easier to declare in sonorous tones that the second poster doesn’t have the background to know what Lady Stuffandnonsense is talking about and that the second poster is just WRONG.

All of which leads the Wiclets who look to Lady Stuffandnonsense for education to be encouraged in their attacks on the second poster. It does not matter that the second poster has a PhD in Herbalism and Pharmacology (and is a practicing pharmacist and homeopathic doctor), the second poster (obviously, according to the list) has absolutely no knowledge of what Lady Stuffandnonsense is talking about. (You may laugh, but this scenario actually happened at one point, and I’ve toned it down quite a bit.)

At which point our Doctor gets ticked off and tries in vain to educate these people before they overdose with Foxglove and kill someone. Which leads to an escalation of the resistance to that education, and so on, ad neausium.

If Lady Stuffandnonsense had looked a couple facts up before writing her article, had she looked the facts up after she wrote and posted her article, had she been mature and not had her ego invested in being right, all this could have been prevented. Nor is she alone in the blame, all those who decided that a correction of facts was an attack, because they refused to see that anyone else could offer anything of use to them are guilty of perpetuating this scenario too. Finally our Doctor who posted the correction is somewhat guilty, by answering the Wiclets who attacked her and her facts (although this is completely understandable, and laudable, in her attempt to not be witness to an accident waiting to happen.)

(A perfect example of this is the above section. In the first draft of this essay I had confused Datura, Foxglove and Henbane as the same plant. While all are poisonous, each is a separate species of plant. I posted this first section to a list I am on, and when I was corrected, I ADMITTED my mistake, looked up some facts, corrected it in this draft, and went on. No one got mad, no one got defensive, nor did anyone get their feelings hurt. Had I been a fluffy, I would have retreated into “I’m right and you are wrong….” and left a lot of sore feelings behind, perpetuated inaccurate info, and proved how immature I am.)

2) Blind faith in anything said by the “leader”.

One of the most juvenile and lemming-like qualities in Wiclets is this one. Be it Silver RavenWolf, Cunningham, Lady Stuffandnonsense, Lady Stuffandnonsense’s teacher from 30 years ago, a website or what have you, this is totally accepting whatever this person says as Gospel, the way it is, the TRUTH and nothing but the TRUTH, even when faced with multiple refutations of that truth by other sites. Here’s an example:

Lady Stuffandnonsense has a website in which she posts the information that during the Burning Times, 9 million women were burned at the stake for being witches. She advertises this site to everyone she knows, and to her list of Wiclets who don’t know any better. Lady Stuffandnonsense ignores the bare fact that 20 or 30 people, historians and scholars correct her “fact” and she never updates that site to reflect the more accurate numbers.

Lady Stuffandnonsense’s Wiclet followers go out and quote the 9 million number and get violently offended when anyone tries to correct it, or use logic to point out that 9 million women couldn’t have possibly died because there would be no Europe left had that happened, or that men were killed too and so on. Which leads us to Symptom…

3) Anger when a “Sacred Cow” is questioned.

Honestly, this one makes the least sense to me. Most mainstream western religions demand that you be obedient and not question what is told to you by the authorities in the Church. You must surrender your brain at the door. You are not allowed to ask “Why” thus and so is how we do things, nor are most dogmatic thoughts discussed or explained other than in the gathering of clergy. To the lay person, the worshiper, questions like “why do you use two hands to bless the bread” are not allowed, the answer is invariably “because”.

But one thing about Wicca is that it is not supposed to be mired in dogma or in pointless ritual. Practitioners are encouraged to ask questions and define things for themselves. They are supposed to think and ask and challenge and question. But it looks more and more Wiccabes are challenging the wrong things.

Certainly challenge the statement “we do this ritual this way because” with “why do you do it that way, why not this way?” But don’t automatically assume that because scourging appears in a ritual, and you think it’s too kinky that it’s wrong. Part of questioning the sacred cow is to accept that which you find strange.

Please note, I DID NOT say that you had to practice it. I understand that there are those out there who are horrified at the sight of blood, and therefore will never do a blood sacrifice or animal sacrifice. But just because you find that particular practice repellant does not mean that it should be discarded completely. There are good and strong reasons that one sacrifices blood or animals, and there are ways that it is done which make the process and the magick stronger. It is not done casually or callously; it is done at times of need. But you must be willing to say “Well, that’s for them. I understand why they are doing it, but it’s not for me” and allow them to practice it.

Let’s say for instance, you find out that a priestess in your community does hexes. This is contrary to your set of ethics and the Rede. Do not go around bashing said priestess and saying how bad she is, that she’s a member of a “left-handed path” and so on, but find out why she is doing those hexes and allow her to do them if they are her choice. After all, it’s HER karmatic burden she is raising; it’s HER that will be kicked in the teeth by Threefold Return, not you. No one appointed you as the moral guardian of the month, and because of that you have no right to say anything.

In fact, by taking it upon yourself to run around and correct everyone’s behavior, you are linking your karma to hers, and if SHE gets karmatcially kicked in the teeth, you will too. So the rule here is “live and let live”.

But in order to question intelligently, you should be familiar with why something exists in the first place. In order to question and possibly discard the scourging in a ritual, you have to understand why it’s there. Just saying, “no one is going to hit ME with a whip over a hundred times” is not enough, you have to understand what that whipping means in the context of the ritual, in the context of the religion and in the context of the symbols it represents. Without that understanding, how can you judge what should be there and what should be done away with? Saying it’s not for you is fine, but it may also be a case of throwing out the baby with the bathwater if you discard it. You could be throwing out a critical component of the spirituality and part of the Mysteries you signed up to learn if you discard this.

Another major lack in fluffies is

4) Critical Thinking Skills. June 12, 2003

Let’s look at an example for a moment:

We will use for this example one of the greatest and most often cited “fact” of modern Wiccan/Pagan history; the 9 Million European Women Dead during the Burning Times. I have personally seen this figure quoted in numerous books, cited as “fact” on many pages, and found it being taught in classes on Wicca and Paganism. Most of those in the know, the ones who have done some research on the topic, have found that this is a complete fallacy. In the first draft of this document, I had a series of suppositions dealing with this “fact” but it seems that my assumptions made me talk out of my ass myself. So, I will defer to the experts in this field and send you all to these pages: Recent Developments in the Study of The Great European Witch Hunt and The Burning Times Myth are two excellent articles debunking this particular myth. Please read both these articles before continuing with this article.

Done? Good. Now, given what you just read, does the “fact” of 9 million European women being murdered logically stand? I truly don’t think so.

What are scholars saying? That the actual death toll is between 40,000 and 60,000 with a POSSIBLE high of 100,000 ( Summerlands Remembrance ) but that’s it. In fact, as more accurate data is found, the death toll is going down. It’s approaching 20,000. ( Population sources for information on actual population totals during the time period we are talking about. )

But all of this assumes you don’t believe the 9 million estimate, it assumes you have enough thinking skills to actually try to think things through and find out for yourself what is true and what is not, especially when facts are concerned, and sources are NOT cited. This means that you have to have critical thinking skills and the ability to question what you have been told, and the tools necessary to find out the truth.

I did some web searches and found the above pages through those searches. The first one to find out population was done on Google with the key terms of “Estimated population Europe 1550” and I got thousands of hits. The second of these was sufficient for my purposes, but I bet any of the others that showed population statistics would have done. The second search I did was for “Estimate death “burning times”” and I had over 200 hits. But I knew how to find the facts I wanted.

This is one of those skills that I see fewer and fewer people actually using. The Internet is one huge research library, and people don’t know how to use a search engine. It’s like looking in the index of a book in the library. One fluffy posted a question about some Gods and who they were, their myths, what they did and so on. Now, I was able to find all the information she wanted in about 10 minutes with Google, but could she be bothered to do that? Why not? This is part of basic fact-finding, a skill taught in EVERY school in America, and probably in the world. So why couldn’t she do this? IMO, one word sums it up, laziness. She simply did not want to do the 10 minutes of work associated with this to find out the answer to her question.

So, this needs to stop, along with not wanting to question “facts” especially when they are highly subjective facts.

Also, don’t misunderstand me. I am not saying that the whole Inquisition and other witch frenzies was not a tragedy, it was. It was a horrible terror that should not have been stood for by the local people ( “They Came For Me” ) and should have been stopped if only out of enlightened self-interest. No, what I’m saying is that it’s high time Wiccans stop trying to be the most persecuted group in history. It’s almost like modern Wiccans are so insecure with their own belief that they have to have the most “ancestors” killed to feel special. Why can’t they feel special because of their religion? Know what? ALL my ancestors died, every one of them, a 100% mortality rate. But you don’t see me crying about how persecuted I am by time, do you? Stop inventing things to be martyrs for, there is more than enough serious problems to make you feel special.

5) Reality checks bouncing.

So, you think your HPS of this group is a 40th level Werewolf who if she bites someone will turn them into a werewolf, and you can’t wait for it to be your turn to be bitten? You need a serious mental checkup.

Let’s look at a few facts:

While it is true that legends of the Wolfman and Vampires appear in mythology, there is no evidence they actually exist. Porphyria, iron deficiency anemia, near death experiences, and some sick bastards are all sufficient to explain why someone who goes out only at night and drinks blood from raw or rare steaks. The rest can be explained as self-delusion. Kids with genetic deficiencies that make them grow all kinds of body hair ( Wolfman and Gendis ) are to be pitied, not emulated. But in the past, others could have had this rare genetic problem, and when superstition was rampant instead of scientific investigation, wolfman stories were probably invented to explain the “freaks”.

At which point, it was simply easier to go with the flow and become what everyone was saying they were. The stories and eyewitness accounts enter the public record and we have myths of someone with excessive body hair eating chickens by the moonlight.

Personally, if I were living in the 1400’s, had a genetic disorder that made my entire body sprout hair and keep growing it everywhere, I had been made fun of all my life because of this, I was considered a freak, I would be in hiding, only coming out at night, eating whatever food I could steal from farmhouses (most probably chickens) and attacking people I hated. Crud, my life is already in the toilet, why not add murder to it and get revenge on the people who have been tormenting me all my life?

The point here is that this was NOT romantic, it was NOT good, it was NOT a fun thing, it was a horrendous existence. If you have spent any time in school and had to deal with the herd mentality of the average 12 year old schoolchildren, you know how cruel they can be to those who are different. And they know about Porphyria, or they can be educated about it. How many movies have been made where the deaf person is abused and beat simply because they can’t hear; because they are different from everyone else? And THIS is the kind of existence you want to live?

And this is what you want? You want to be a werewolf? You think it’s glamorous? How many of those myths have the werewolf going insane and killing and killing until they are killed by the “normal” population? How many vampires do the humans hunt down once they are discovered?

How about this? Remember back in the 1968 when that teacher divided the class into the brown eyed students and the blue eyed students, and told the blue eyed students they were worthless, to prove that Racism is taught? (Reference)

Those kids were vicious to each other, mean, cruel, hateful and that kind of behavior would NEVER be tolerated in most schools now, but it still goes on now, with bullies and hatred. And you want this to happen to you? Are you out of your mind?

“Oh,” I hear you say, “that won’t happen to ME!” So why in the name of all that is holy are you going around bragging about being one? Going onto lists and saying “I’m a Toreador and a Vampire! Boy White Wolf Games got my clan right on!” Do you have to be SO SUPER special that you can’t just be a Wiccan/Pagan? That’s not enough for you? You have to be some sort of elite group within Wicca to make yourself feel special?

Let me clue you in for a moment: Even when you identify yourself as a Witch/Druid/Vampire who can go out in the Sunlight and not die, you still won’t feel special. You’ll still have to look around and find more things to identify with to make yourself feel good. All you will find is that most people will want to be FAR away from you, and those that DO want to be around you will only want to be there to feed your delusion that you are a vampire.

There is nothing wrong with taking a piece of truth you find in a game or in a myth and adding that to your spirituality. There are many who think Loki is Chaotic Neutral, and that use the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons ™ alignment scale to rate people. Does that mean they thing that Paladins exist here and now, and that the planes are labeled as AD&D says they are? Probably not. It’s that the symbol of the alignment made sense to them, and they use it to represent how this person strikes them in a soul state. It’s an attempt to quantify with words something that is beyond description, nothing more.

So, if you are a fan of White Wolf, more power to you, you will find a lot of people who will be more than willing to talk to you endlessly about the games they had in the past. They will talk to you about how the energies of the Moon feel different during a Waxing Gibbous Moon than they do during the New Blood Moon. But when you call yourself a Wererider, expect to become persona non-gratta fairly fast. Wake up and smell reality. Or as I heard in one game when someone was getting too into their character “Get real, this is fantasy!”

6) “I am a Priest(ess) of the God(dess)! I know everything!!!”

This is one of those statements that make real practitioners cringe. Just because you have done some reading does not mean you know everything. It does not even mean that you know everything on a given subject; there is always more to learn.

Let’s take ONE area that the fluffies love to say they know everything on, the Runes.

First question: Which Runes? Elder Futhark? Younger Futhark? Anglo-Saxon? Seax-Wica (as invented by Buckland)? Which rune set are you talking about when you say you know everything? Each of the above sets of runes is VERY different from the others, and each of them have nuances that don’t appear in others. It’s like working with alphabets, there is English, Finnish, Dutch, Cyrillic, Spanish, German and Chinese. You can’t substitute one set of alphabets for another without some work.

But let’s stipulate that you are working with the Elder Futhark Runes. Which interpretation are you using? Blum’s, Peschel’s (the set I use actually), the Icelandic rune poem, the Norwegian rune poem or the Old English rune poem? If you know everything about the runes, you should know what I’m talking about here. If you don’t you need to do some more studying.

What? You are using your own interpretation, based on what the Gods told you they meant? Well WHY didn’t you say so? That’s fine, but don’t claim that YOUR interpretation of the runes is what everyone knows, because it’s not. Blum has a set of interpretations, Peschel has a different interpretation, and both of them are based on the Germanic rune poems, of which there are three different sets, all meaning different things. And that is just one set of runes, there are about 20 different runic alphabets out there that can be used for divination, the most common alternate being the Ogham of the Druids. But saying that you got inspired to write your own set of runes and interpret them THIS way will get you looked at as an honest person rather than some damned fluffy by most people in the communities you want to interact with.

And by being a Priest/ess you have to have a Church or Coven.  But what is wrong with being a worshiper? Nothing. Most people I know of simply like to go to the rituals, sing the songs, do the drumming, chant the chants, and don’t care about being the leader of a ritual. They will gladly say that they are a worshiper, not a priest. But you get on some lists, and the fluffies come out of the woodwork to say that EVERYONE is a priest or priestess and that you can’t avoid it.

Let me suggest this: While they may be right that everyone is a priest(ess) for themselves, meaning they don’t need an intercessor between them and the Gods, there is nothing wrong with allowing the leadership roles to fall upon those who actually want to do the job and who are good at it. You don’t have to be a priest or priestess of the Gods if you don’t feel the call in your heart, because it’s a long hard road. If you only feel like doing the worship parts and praying to the Gods when you are alone, guess what? You can do that.

But for some reason, fluffies seem to think that just because you are Wiccan, and Cunningham said you could initiate yourself, that you are automatically a priestess and MUST have a coven and lead them all. Well, if that were the case, the Christian religion would be made up of nothing but priests and priestesses. They pray, they do the celebrations, they go to church, but they have not dedicated their lives to service of others and leading groups of worshipers in ritual. They don’t have the specialized knowledge that has been the hallmark of the Clergy. Your Prest/ess has that specialized knowledge. If you feel compelled to find that knowledge out and tread the path of becoming Wiccan Clergy, more power to you, you will find a lot of helping hands. If you only want to celebrate and worship, more power to you as well. But don’t think that just because you have been initiated into Wicca (ie baptized into the Christian Church) that you are automatically clergy and have to be an asshole about it.

I had been practicing for four years before I ever thought about calling myself a “priest”. I had earned the title many times over, but someone else called me a Priest before I would ever think about calling myself that.

7) An aversion to introspection.

A while ago, I did a series of articles on various things, one of which was “The Path of the Magickian“. It lays out the path a practitioner of magick treads in their journey. One of the recurring themes of that article, and a critical component of anyone’s spirituality, was introspection.

Don’t know what that is? Let me explain.

Introspection is “looking within”. In an INspection, you look at things, adding “intro” means within. So, you look within your mind, your soul, your body and find out what is right, wrong, in need of correcting at a future time, and what can be put on hold indefinitely. You look and find why you are pissed off when your sister takes the attention at Christmas, you look and find out why you are tired at the end of the day, you look and find out why that song on the radio made you cry. You find these things out so you can apply them in your life. Want to be helpless every time “The Leader of the Band” comes on the radio? Then find out why it makes you bawl your eyes out. I know why it affects me, and how to keep it from affecting me to the point of having an accident. But I would not have know that or how to “fix” it if I didn’t go looking for the cause and how to fix it.

Want to know why you don’t have a lover in your life yet? Look at past relationships and pay attention to what you were doing. Remember that when so-and-so grabbed the brush out of your had that you flew into a rage is not enough, why did you fly into that rage? Is it because they were rude, is it because you were not done yet, or was it because you were afraid they would hit you with it like your mommy did?  Are you insecure about your looks and brushing your hair is a way to delay looking in the mirror and dealing with how ugly you are?  Or is it that he simply wanted to talk to you and you thought that his doing that was incredibly rude?  As GI Joe said at the end of every episode “Knowing is half the battle”.

Guess what…. When you know, you can say to your next lover, “Don’t grab the brush out of my hand, my mother used to do that just before she smacked me with it for being bad, and it brings up a LOT of bad memories for me” or that you need to work on your temper or your beauty self image issues.  Thus, you can break out of one cycle of behavior through knowing WHY you reacted the way you did.  Ninety percent of the time, without breaking out of those cycles, you can’t advance spiritually.

8) Not wanting to mess up.

This is probably the most insidious fluffy behavior there is, the desire not to screw up. Conversely it’s the easiest to correct.

You are asked to do something for your leader. Because you don’t want to mess up and you want to be looked upon as trustworthy and capable, you decide to do it and you jump in with both feet. It does not matter that this is not something you are actually knowledgeable in, and that you are incapable of doing this, you want to impress her and your mates, so you do it. You do this without help, you mess up, mess up and mess up, and pretty soon you are in over your head.

Want to know a secret? No one is going to look down on you if you say “no”. No one is going to assume you are a bad person if you don’t put the incense on the altar because you are afraid of fire. No one is going to look at you with distain because you can’t play a note of your guitar despite 5 years of lessons, and if they do, who needs them? I’m afraid of clowns, terribly afraid of them, so don’t ask me to participate in the local Pagan Carnival, because I will probably snap and beat a few clowns up.

Does this make me less of a Priest? No. It means that I’m mature enough to accept that I can’t stand clowns and that I don’t want to be associated with them at all. My wife is afraid of balloons, so both of us working at one of these carnivals is REALLY a bad idea. But if I were not honest with myself and those in the community, if I were fluffy, I would keep this a secret and not reveal it to anyone, with possibly disastrous results. All because I don’t want to be seen as weak.

It’s not that important. It makes me human. I have a flaw, so we deal with it, move on and work around it. I’m a person, not a saint or a paragon. Be honest with yourself and others and don’t try to take on things you are not suited to.

(The following two pieces were suggested by Chris Cottrell on a.r.w.m. Many thanks to him.)

9) Wonderland syndrome

Wicca is nice, Wicca is kind, all elements that may be considered “dark” like death, cycles of nature, decomposition, male dolphins raping female dolphins and sometimes attacking humans in a sexual way, whales beaching themselves deliberately because they are suicidal and on and on and on are ignored because they are bad. Part of this syndrome is that if anyone does anything that could be considered “dark”, such as casting a spell to give what someone has coming to them, they are IMMEDIATELY considered a “Left Handed Pather” and are thus beyond contempt. It doesn’t matter that Silver Ravenwolf herself practices Dutch Hexamastery, that Buckland says that hexes are sometimes good things, or that most HP/Ss in practicing covens say “can’t hex, can’t heal” and advise everyone to be familiar with ALL aspects of Magick, oh no, that is entirely ignored.

Added to that, Unicorns, Dragons and Fairies are routinely put into the practice and spirituality of one who is a true fluffbunny. Yes, each of these creatures can be benevolent and kind, but Unicorns have a limit to their patience and sometimes will gore you just to get rid of you. Dragons consider most humans no better than lice and the Fairies of pre-Victorian practice stole babies out of their cribs because they could, leaving a “changeling” that would sicken and die within weeks. Cats were reputed to steal the breath of children while they slept, leading to SIDS, Brownies would wreck a house where proper “tribute” was not left on the doorstep, and gnomes in the garden demanded fresh milk daily or they would keep the plants stunted, starving the owners of the garden.

Then there are the truly evil fairies, like the Red Caps, who dipped their hats in fresh human blood to make them red and to gain power, incidentally killing the person in question.

Most fluffies exhibiting the Wonderland Syndrome feel blood sacrifice is one of the worst things from the “dark side of Wicca” that one could mention. It is irrelevant that menstrual blood is a critical component for things like “Witches’ Bottles” and so on, or that blood appears in various forms in spells from the Middle Ages, or that there are many good articles out there dealing with modern Blood Sacrifice (by going to donate blood), or that they are in the middle of ritual and feel an overwhelming urge to cut their hand with their athame, oh no, that is BAD and of the Dark Powers (never specifying just WHICH dark powers).

See, Wicca is of light and love and life and lollypops and fluff and cotton candy…. They completely ignore that the Moon has a Dark Phase too.

10) Lack of effective practice.

Gods help them if they actually cast a spell that WORKS. They will totally freak out, every time. Fluffy sits down and does a spell to bring money into their life. Suddenly they get an unlooked-for bonus at work, which precisely covers their needs. There are one of several things that usually happen to the Fluff bunny at this point.

a) They go into Wizard mode, and everything requires a spell. Their Magick WORKS, by the Goddess, and so they need Magick for EVERY problem and situation they come upon. Therefore, to get a promotion or a new house or gain money for the bills, all they need to do is cast a spell. They feel that because they deserve whatever and that they did the spell, that it will fall into their laps, even if they can’t articulate that this is how they feel. And because they did the spell, they don’t have to do any more work to make their desire come to pass. After all, they did the spell, right? Please note, this is USUALLY only a problem with the very young fluffies, although it can (and does) occur in any age group.

b) They go into fear-factor mode. Magick WORKS…. Therefore, all those evil people out there, the LHPers, they can do Magick and harm them and they can’t do anything because they can’t harm others because of the rede and their priestess said that they couldn’t because….. Suddenly life turns serious and ANYONE can be a magickal master out to get them. They are constantly being attacked by these enemies, and therefore that must be PROOF of how special they are, since the powers of darkness want to keep them down (and not so incidentally playing up to the Victim Attitude and making them feel even more special).

c) Gunslinger syndrome. “I’m so powerful and good that everyone is out to get me and prove how powerful they are, but they are never as powerful as me….” Come on, you have met these people before. They are the ones who are always shielding others because they are under constant psychic attack or their spells are so wonderful that it draws all kinds of evil creatures to them…. These people are the perpetual martyr.

Now, what do these people have in common? Usually their lives are a complete shambles and they can’t magick their way into a headache, much less anything else. These are the ones who have no significant other, despite the tons of love spells they cast, they are the ones who go around and tell everyone else how weak their shields are and how to fix them, despite being in a sacred place that has generations of protections on it (the magickal equivalent of a nuclear blast shelter) which they can’t sense if their lives depended on it, or they complain and moan about how everything that is wrong in their life is due entirely to spells and attacks from those who are jealous of their power. Every problem has a supernatural explanation and they do rituals for the littlest things, probably hoping they will luck into a working spell again out of sheer repetition.

It is my opinion that fluffies exhibiting this symptom are the most irritating.

Update June 4, 2004 I have seen reports that have been shared with me from various people which perfectly describe this syndrome.  I was told of a priestess of a coven who went to an open ritual with another group.  They had the ritual together and later the HPS refused to go to and participate with the first HPS again.  When pressed for an answer as to why not, she stated that during the Circle, she “felt something” and attributed this to “dark powers”.  HELLO! The point of ritual is to evoke and invoke those same forces, to “feel something” during the ritual.  If you don’t feel something during a ritual, you are DOING IT WRONG.  But the fluffy HPS was scared because the ritual actually worked, which points to her rituals never having worked in the past.

11) Lack of respect for other religions.

Pulling the “Totems” from Native American spirituality, mixing it with Quetzocoattal, adding in Finnish runes, using the didgeridoo of the Native Australians (especially if female) and then dissing the Koran as a hate book is one example. There are many others. These are the people who will gladly pull from any tradition and practice, even mutually antagonistic ones, without regard for propriety or cultural taboos. They are the ones who will walk up to a Native American Medicine Man, and call him a witch to his face  and think that this is a high honor. (Okay, I’ll give it to you since this is a little obscure. To the Native American mindset, to my understanding, a Witch is one that causes harm and kills by Medicine techniques. Doing this would be equivalent to walking into a meeting of the NAACP and calling everyone there a “nigger” because it’s what the homies call themselves. It shows a fundamental lack of respect.)

Does this lack of respect actually matter to the average fluffy suffering from this symptom? Not in the least. She won’t understand why the Medicine Man won’t talk to her anymore. She doesn’t understand why no one will teach her how to play a didgeridoo, and why people laugh at her when she proudly claims that her Goddess is Kali and that her God is Gilgamesh (she heard the name in Star Trek and liked it).

Never once does it cross her mind that there may be taboos that don’t allow for a woman to play an instrument meant EXCLUSIVELY for men, or that her Goddess is a killer, no matter how many flowers she puts on her, or that totem animals are friends and companions and reminders, not deities. None of this seems to matter. If talked to about it, she will pass it off as being Eclectic, which is a good thing, right? I mean, let’s forget that the Romans came in and killed the Celts, conquered them and that the Roman legionnaires called upon Mars to help them do it, and let’s forget that the Celtic Goddess of War was called upon to help the Celts defend themselves, let’s put Mars and the Morrigon into the same ritual, they are both deities of War, right? Let’s forget that Loki is a god that caused the Midgard serpent, and that the same serpent causes Thor’s death in Ragnarók let’s put them together in the same ceremony to promote peace on Earth since they USED to be friends.

This attribute pairs nicely with the lack of research.

(Update August 14, 2004:

11a) Monopolytheism

Recently a visitor to my site offered this suggestion for an addition to this article.  So thanks to Wilhelm Barlow for this suggestion.  Drop him a line if you have strong thoughts on this, he wants your feedback.

I add his suggestion to the above part because these are the same basic thing, lack of respect.  In monopolytheism, All Gods are facets of ONE God.  This means that Thor, Odin, Mars, The Morrighan, Lugh, Satan, Lucifer, YHVH are all just facets of some uber-god out there, therefore since Thor really does equate to Eris and Discordia, it doesn’t matter what name we call Them, the proper deity will respond.

Once upon a time, I actually believed this.  It can be seen in some of my writings from about 4 years ago.  I don’t believe it now, precisely, but there are parts of this that still make sense.  I wrote a whole article on this topic, so take a look at that for now.

I feel this trend springs from a couple of sources.  First is a fear that Wicca/Paganism is wrong, and not wanting to piss the Christian God off.  So if these pagan deities you have been worshiping for the last 8 years are only aspects of God, then all is good and right.  Sorry, but it just doesn’t work that way.

The other source is one of the main works that were used when Wicca was first starting out, The White Goddess by Robert Graves.   Had Mr. Graves actually known what he was talking about, things may have been good, but since he was a poet who was trying to prove Margaret Murray’s theories he squished all goddesses into one goddess by some of the wildest twists of logic and by grasping at some of the thinnest of straws.

But unfortunately, for many years this was the gold standard.  Everyone related their gods to the One God, and this “Mystery” deepened.  Deities lost their names because the name wasn’t necessary.

And now when many in the Pagan communities (both online and off) are trying to rediscover the power of a deity as them self, with their own personality, flaws, wants, needs, desires, power and passion, many are sanctimoniously telling those who are doing this that they are wrong.

If you are too scared to move past Christianity and get over the concept of “One God”, then I have no problem with that.  But there is no call to say that my practice is wrong.  At that point, it’s one-true-wayism and hypocrisy.  More than anything else, monopolytheism is trying to be MONOPOLYtheism, and trying to take over from all other forms of practice.  Leave those of us who are trying to develop something meaningful alone and practice your way.

(And thanks to Lord Kern The God of Corn and Magazine Subscriptions for this next one:)

12) An inability to take constructive criticism constructively.

They always take it personal. Any criticism is a bad thing. You are surfing the Internet, find a fluffy page, see the HUGE factual errors about 9 million dying in the Burning Times, send a polite e-mail to the website owner in question suggesting that they may want to check out THIS LIST of 50 pages from reputable people who have come up with about 50,000 victims, and you get a nasty gram back. Come on, this has happened to YOU surely.

It always confuses the living daylights out of me since the initial e-mail was polite to the point of being subservient and servile, but because I dared criticize their page, I MUST be one of those oppressors who can’t stand that she’s putting up the truth on her page. Her Priestess said that 9 million died and logic no longer enters the picture.

And God help you if you are actually making fun of them on another site to blow off steam. I’m a member of a group who posts different pagan sites on a list for members to rate as to the quality of the writing, their knowledge of Paganism and Judeo-Christianity and how verifiable their facts are, as well as website design. Admittedly, many of the sites that are reviewed are fluffy and some are really ragged on, but to be fair the good sites, no matter how bad the beliefs expressed, are usually rated highly.

But when the fluffy under examination finds out their site is a “bad” one, they join up, review their OWN site, and rate it highly (duh) and then get 20-50 of their close friends to do the same thing, and call us meanies all the time, telling us how we are wrong, bad, evil, LHPers, idiots, one-true-wayish, how we are misogynistic, repressive, hidebound and so on till we just want to strangle them all. The owner of the site that does this has shared a few of the more choice e-mails and they are frightening in their fluffiishness. Point out ONE error and the world ends.

But it’s not just constructive criticism that is taken so wrongly (thanks Noddy for this), it’s ANY comment that can be seen as critical. For instance, try this test.

  • Join a list or just a public chat.
  • Wait for someone to ask a question like “I don’t like kids. Does this affect my relationship with the Goddess?”
  • Let the fluffies have their say.
  • Take a position counter to what they took (like saying “Not at all. The Goddess understands that there are some who don’t feel the call to be mothers and fathers. Good for you that you know this, instead of being a bad parent.”)
  • Watch the list go ape-shit all over you. (have an asbestos suit handy)
  • Get stock in the manufacturers of Fire-Extinguishers (you will be rich)

The flame war will be unlike anything you have ever seen. You will witness 60 year old people turning into bratty 5 year olds before your very eyes, you will see your words twisted like a Chinese metal puzzle, you will witness group attacks that make the Nazi Panzer blitz vs. the Polish Calvary (still on horseback and wielding sabers) look fair in comparison. You will be called all kinds of insulting names, your sexuality will be questioned, you will be told that you are NOT really ________ because how could say something like that and be that cruel.

You will hear from the pro-lifers (yes, Wicca has them too. [sigh] ) who will tell you that you support ripping children out of the womb in late pregnancy abortions and that you have no clue what the Rede is about. You will be favorably compared with those evil LHPers and ignored.

Mind you this will probably happen in just a few minutes if you are in a chatroom, and you will have no chance to defend yourself. If it’s an e-mail list, you will have it happen in about a day’s span, and it will be a recurring topic for about a week, even when the list-owner declares it too hot a topic to deal with.

And trust me, this is a MILD example. I have had this happen to me personally, and despite clarification after clarification, restating the original premise, restating my position, they STILL take it incorrectly and in the worst possible way.

What’s all this mean when you put it together? Hopefully if you recognize yourself in these words, you can take steps to begin to correct these problems. Correcting them will eventually lead to your loss of “fluffbunny” status. People will actually start wanting to be around you when you approach and you will honestly have something to say. Who knows what may happen at that point.


Other Resources:

This is the section where I send you out to other articles/essays that are about Fluffy-Bunnyism.  If you were offended by the above essay, you will want to read these resources to get a second opinion of your fluffy status.  All these are important for diagnosing this condition.


Update May 5, 2003: I never thought I would have to do this, but apparently there are some out there who are trying to “reclaim” the term “fluffbunny” from us “evil people who think that we should all walk around with hexes in our hands, ready to throw them.” (This was a direct quote, BTW.)

THE TERM FLUFFBUNNY IS AN INSULT YOU {too stupid to know when you are being insulted} FLUFFERS This is not a term to wear with pride, it is something to be ashamed of. It means that you are head-in-the-clouds that you can’t see when someone is kicking your shins, or ridiculing you. As proved by the movement to “reclaim” this term.

This has been a term of derision for a while now, it generated from the “oh so cutsie” bunnies that are sold every year at Easter, and then who are abandoned every year at 4th of July when they are not cute anymore, but no one has the guts to slaughter them for the pot. It came from the trend of little girls (and some fully grown girls) to collect all that is stuffed like the Unicorns, Dwaggons, horsies, teddy bears, kitties, dollies and anything that has plush inside it. I first heard this term while playing D&D, and it was in regards to those who were too stupid to come in out of the rain.

Life is not lollypops and rainbows. Walk down an alley with those hundred dollar bills in your pocket and see if your “the Universe is a Friendly Place” philosophy will keep the muggers from eating you alive. I’ll stand back here with my karate and gun and not walk down the alley in the first place.

I know many people who are “Sweetness ‘n Light ©” people. They are wonderful people and they brighten up those around them. It’s good to have them around to make one feel better. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a sunny disposition or having a positive outlook on life. In fact, one of those with a sunny disposition was molested as a little girl, and still recovering, the other just recently went through a BAD domestic dispute and subsequent divorce. These experiences did not embitter them, it made their bright nature even brighter. This is wonderful and completely right.

No, this essay is directed toward those individuals who have to ask permission from a list of strangers to do a spell to call the police on an abusive husband simply because it’s a BAD thing to do, and it could come back and hurt them….

Take off the blinders and the rose-colored glasses! Wake up. Be realistic and understand that the Universe tends toward Chaos, not chocolate and lollypops. There are thousands of sayings that prove this to you, but sitting around and hoping that the perfect job/lover/friend/situation will drop in your lap will not bring them to you. The Universe is a Universe of Survival of the Fittest. If you don’t drop the “innocent” act and wake up and get a little selfish, you will wind up sucking hind teat and probably never advance past the state you are in currently.

There is a whole movement out there that is perfect for your philosophy, it’s called New Age. Go join that. And if you won’t wake up, join the New Agers, at least be courteous enough not to spread your disease among the next generations of Wiccans, Druids, Asatru and Magickians. Some of us are actually trying to protect ourselves and gain a few things from this world.

AHA! I just came up with the perfect visual to show you all how you are acting. Think back to the movie of the Decade…. Labyrinth. I know you all saw it, so remember the movie. Take as long as you need. Okay, now that you have remembered the sweetness ‘n light © of that movie, think back to when Sarah first meets Hoggle. What is he doing? Killing fairies. BAD Hoggle!!! But when Sarah picks one up and tries to make it well, because she’s so beautiful and wonderful, she gets bitten for her trouble. Seems Hoggle knows several things that Sarah could stand to learn after all. You are Sarah, those who are non-fluffies around you are Hoggle. We actually understand that sometimes it’s necessary to destroy the wonderful and beautiful because they are a danger.

I tell you something, had Odysseus’ ship been packed with fluff-bunnies, Penelope would have married another man. As it is, I’m glad there was one non-fluffer on board to kill those sweet-sounding ladies. (For those of you who missed this referent, read some mythology, specifically, “The Odyssey” by Homer. In there, there are mermaids who delight in luring ships onto their rocks, destroying them and eating the drowned sailors. They did this by singing to them in a beautiful tone.)


(Note from Daven:  When I posted this on alt.religion.wicca.moderated, I got this response.  It is meant to be humorous, and I think it’s exceptionally funny.  My thanks to Wendy Zephyr’s alter ego Gale for permission to repost this here.)
by zeldazephyr@hotmail.com (Zelda Zephyr) 
Wendy Zephyr’s Homepage

Dear Mr. Daven,

I read the title to your article and decided that what was needed was a recipe for creating a fluff bunny. I found this one in the Wendy Zephyr Guide to Genuine Real Magic ™ and post it under the assumption that all persons viewing are familiar with Fair Use provisions of the U.S. & international copyright laws.

Now, making a fluff-bunny is very similar to making a golem (that’s as in artificial man, not as in LOTR). The one major difference is that, while a golem should be firm, solid, and of exceptional strength, a fluff-bunny should be soft, furry, and have bunny ears.

Therefore, one starts with different initial materials. I began with a small green & white stuffed bunny such as are sold in Easter Baskets. Shape and consistency are good, but the fur on such a creature is not sufficiently fluffy. Thus one must either perform a hair-growing spell or leave the bunny under the bed for six months to accumulate fluff. I used the Handy-Dandy Wendy Zephyr Hair-Growing spell (which worked fine on the bunny but failed to put a single additional hair on my balding father’s head; he says it did cause him to grow more hair from his ears, which he did not find desirable).

Then a resizing spell must be in order — a fluff bunny should be expanded to the size of a small human; I recommend somewhere in the 4 foot 8 to 5 foot 8 range, depending on the sex of the bunny. Don’t make males too small, as short males tend to be feisty instead of fluffy. Females are probably preferred, at least in terms of rabbit dispositions.

Now that your bunny is of the proper size, sex, and fuzziness, you need only bring it to life. Some folks recommend use of the Come Alive powder from the Wizard of Oz books; I used a conversion spell similar to the one I used to turn our ottoman into a big guinea pig.

My venture was a tremendous success, though I will note that said fluff bunny’s initial behavior was complete out-of-control. In the first 24 hours of its existence it managed to scare the daylights out of my mother, to consume a truly outrageous number of carrots, and to corner the manager of our local bookstore and spend three hours telling him why he needs to stock more Llewellyn publications.

It then disappeared into a mall, where I last spotted it gazing at cheap crystal ornaments and jewelry. Once I recover it, I will undertake some training regimen.

But anyhow, that is how you make a Fluff Bunny.

BB,
Wendy Zephyr

Print This Post Print This Post

4 Responses to “What Makes a Fluffbunny?”

  1. Janne Harju says:

    I read quite few articles before learnig how to anwser (sorry, I am hopeless). Threfore I am not quite sure anymore wich article I would comment. Nevertheless, you mentioned Finnish runes in emphasizing impossibility of statements like “I know all about runes” and at some point also commented on finnish having different alfabet. I am sorry but theese are mistakes.

    The written finnish was product of 16th century and reformation and first book came out 1543. Finnish uses scandinavian alphabet which means latin alphabet with ä and ö, albeit we use those letters very much and can do wihout q, w, z, b, c and x, hell without d and g too if we want.

    Lastly – and to immense sorrow of acheologists and history buff pagans like me – there is no finnish runes. Finns remained 100% illiterate till arival of latin. It shows sometimes in positive ways like our law considering handshake deals binding but also it that we know very little about many things, including finnih paganism.

    • Erin Daven says:

      I’m going to post a new entry on the blog portion in reply to this. I’ve gotten this comment (or something similar to it) multiple times and I feel I need to “officially” comment on it.

      But thank you for this comment.

  2. […] What Makes a Fluffbunny? by Erin of Erin’s Journal on 26 March, 2012. http://erinsjournal.com/… […]

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>