Monday, April 5, 2010

When 'Fluffy Bunny' is appropriate.


I get some flack on occasion, because I have no problem calling someone a Fluffy Bunny. Is it a pejorative? Well, yes. Is it the nicest, best use of the English language? No, not at all. And in that light I might deserve some of the flack I get, because as a lover of words I should employ their use. 

Oh.   Well.

In the pagan community, you have a group of people that I like to call the 'love and light' group. Those people that insist life is an endless stream of warm fuzzies and positivity. These people tend to emulate the mainstream version of pagan: silly, flighty, making claims of ancient secrets in their attic, the ability to perform extremely improbable magical acts, or to have a magical bloodline dating back to a famous literary or historical figure.  

These people are called, lovingly and not-so, Fluffy Bunnies. The term is meant to be used to define someone who got overly excited when they first discovered their first Pagan/Wiccan 101 text, went overboard on the patchouli oil, believed absolutely everything they read, and stopped. A fluffy bunny is not a new person, because nobody can be faulted for being new - or excited. 

A fluffy bunny is someone who purposely stays in that initial realm of naïveté despite knowing that there is better, more accurate information to learn. It is the difference between being ignorant and being stupid. Ignorant people simply do not know some subject matter. One cannot be faulted for ignorance. Stupid is knowing you don't know something that you need to know and purposely remaining ignorant. 

New people are new, but Fluffy Bunnies know that much of the information in the 101 texts is incorrect and do nothing to improve themselves. Many times these people will become militant about defending their right to their worldview, and they are right to an extent. They can believe whatever they want in spite of history, the laws of physics, or general reality. However, we need to stop saying the term Fluffy Bunny needs to be eradicated. It is a unique term whose unique definition is not replicated in any other term. 

Fluffy Bunny: A pagan, or other witchy person, who remains purposely naïve concerning matters of religious or magical study despite knowing that better, more correct, more academically sound or well-researched information exists. 

Please feel free to check out my Examiner articles (especially this one!) and send me your thoughts about Fluffy Bunnies to IncitingARiotPodcast@gmail.com !

Love and Lyte,

Fire Lyte

7 comments:

  1. I use the term too and usually get some flack for it.

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  2. I have no problem, in principle, with the use of the word "Fluffy Bunny" or even acknowledging that a particular person is a fluffy bunny. I do, however, have a problem with the fact that often, some people's attitudes towards and treatment of fluffy bunnies tend to shade into violations of the principles of Project Pagan Enough.

    A few years ago, I came to the realization that, for reasons I don't understand, some people simply choose to become and remain fluffy bunnies for this time in their lives. It is the wyrd they've chosen to build, and I can only assume that (1) they have a reason for it and (2) it is serving some purpose in their lives at this time. As such, it's not my place to spend great amounts of time -- as I've seen some do -- trying to force fluffy bunnies out of their fluffiness -- or as I've also heard it described, "going bunny hunting."

    That's not to say I won't offer even a fluffy bunny the benefits of my experience and insights. However, I will graciously accept it if they tell me they're not interested.

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  3. I don't call the fluffy bunnies. I call them flakes. Maybe fluffy bunny is nicer.

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  4. I think the problem with fluffy bunnies is that there seems to be more of them than...non-fluffy bunnies?
    I tend to say live and let live. I don't really give a toss if someone thinks they poop fairies or spit stardust. Just so long as they keep it down around me and I tell them as much. As long as they don't have a go at me for what I do then everything is fine and dandy.
    But if someone wants to moan at me about not being enough of a pagan then expect hell.
    That's why as soon as I get home I'm popping Project Pagan Enough on my blog :D

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  5. A spell.

    To become a mermaid.

    For realz!

    Um...

    There are no words.

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  6. PS: I can't thank you enough for starting the "Project Pagan Enough" thing. Well done!

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  7. I am always astounded by those who proclaim "We all started out as fluffy-bunnies!" When I started out (in the early '70s) there hadn't been many of the goofy "Pagan 101" books written yet (and they were never available locally), but there were some "Witch 101" things, written that wholeheartedly swallowed the Malleus Maleficarum's definitions and the medieval superstitions of what 'witches' did. Just as stupid and useless (Kathryn Paulson's awful book comes to mind, as does the hateful propaganda from Montague Summers). Bullfinch and Hamilton and Graves were more helpful to read. Mail-ordering books wasn't very common compared to now, and asking for special-orders at the bookstores could be intimidating for some of us. Archaeology and history and anthropology books often had to serve as work-arounds to glean hints from.

    Being a beginner is not "fluffy-bunnyism," but being a beginner who will not listen to anything which contradicts their initial impressions about Paganism indicates someone who may become one. Having been a self-proclaimed Pagan for any length of time and still holding ideas with no basis in either reality or in Pagan theology, thealogy, or philosophies -- but having lots to do with pop-fiction, and sometimes with personal delusions, now THAT is the stuff of Fluffy-Bunnyism indeed.

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