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One looks at the location of Witches, Druids, Pagans, Golden Dawn, Wiccans, Shamans, and the Neo-Pagans, and where are they? A large percentage of them are in Northern California. Another large percentage of them are in Missouri.

Surprised? Given the nature of the makeup of Missouri and its rich historical heritage, it should come as no shock. I recall recently being told by a Wiccan that there are over twelve-hundred covens in Missouri, known primarily as Witch or Wiccan covens. These covens are in the open and not hidden. The Old Religion is alive and well in Missouri. That number does not include members of the Golden Dawn, Druids, Shamans, or some Pagan groups.

Other states could be discussed, but for the purpose of this essay, the focus is on Missouri. Another time and place will find other areas for discussion.

What does this mean? It means that cultural and religious diversity is still healthy in the United States in the year 2004. It means, simply, Christianity can no longer burn Witches at the stakes simply because they have a different religious perspective, although there are always religious hate groups that would eliminate rather than accommodate. 

In a country as diverse as the United States, there must be a sense of love and feeling, and respect, for another person’s religion. Another person may have different religious beliefs, but from their perspective, so do you!

In a world of strife and stress, it is good to have a personal religion which is of a positive nature. What are you doing the rest of your life? 

Lee Prosser is’s book reviewer and a regular contributor.

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