Chicken and the Egg; Paganism and Tabletop RPG

Its the classic thought experiment of what came first – the chicken or the egg, being Pagan and/or Heathen or playing tabletop RPGs. Really the question is academic, quite literally, because theres not really any way to tell and the likelihood that there is any significant correlation between the two things is so infinitesimally negligible that its worth mentioning only to prove a point.

The question is not one that I can take the credit for however, as it was raised as a panel debate question at the Festival of Minds and the responses were quite interesting, but not so memorable that you’ll see them repeated here. Predominantly they were along the lines of open mindedness, active creative thought processes and that sort of thing. For me it serves a practical function to be both a Pagan and Heath, and to be an avid player of tabletop RPGs because both give insights into the other, perhaps RPG to P/H praxis less so than P/H praxis to RPG but still there is a definite back and forth of concepts involved.

Part of what being Pagan and Heathen does for my RPGs is it helps me tell a better story with my characters, write better backgrounds and even in totally unrelated games (read: not fantasy oriented) and really nail on the head all of the important details involved. The attention to details, large and small, in Pagan and Heathen practices trains you to pay attention even when you don’t realise it. For me it represents a nice cross over of the skills involved in both parts of my life – the detail awareness of my Pagan and Heathen ‘stuff’ helps me make better stories in my RPGs while the constantly changing nature of each individual character I might be playing helps (by nicely forcing me) to approach concepts and ideas I otherwise might never have thought of prior.

I don’t feel that every aspect of your life needs to seamlessly meld with every other aspect of your life, but neither do I feel that you should strictly partition everything from everything else. A little mixing is healthy.


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