Any constructive Wiccan-Pagan dialogue has to start with honest acceptance of each other’s faith.
On the Wiccan side, we will get nowhere unless we recognise and respect that many or most Christians honestly believe that (a) Christianity and the Incarnation are different to other religions, and (b) the Great Commission impels them to evangelize for the faith (even if only through their daily life). We may not accept these views, we may not like them, but we have to respect that Christians hold them dearly. They are sacred tenants of the faith.
Wiccans simply cannot approach Christians in the same way they would another faith, like Asatru, Druidry, Neo-Buddhism, where all are seen as valid paths to the mystery. This is not how many Christians see reality and to expect them to do so is to impose our views upon theirs, which of course is what irks most Wiccans about Christians themselves 🙂
The whole question about Christians writing about the dangers of Wicca and Paganism has to be placed in context. The vast majority of this material is based on ignorance, fear and prejudice. However, some is motivated by genuine concern and love. If we accept some Christians really believe the two principles above – Christianity as the Way and Evangelism, the production of such material is inevitable. It is the only compassionate response available. And really, let’s face it, internally within Wicca there is certainly plenty of discussion and analysis of the shortcomings of Christianity as an organised faith. The only reason there are not Wiccan tracts on the ‘dangers of Christianity’ is because Wicca has no Great Commission and evangelism is anathema to most of its adherents.
On the Christian side, we need to recognise and respect that Wicca is an enlightenment based faith embracing modernity and its values. Wiccans have no concept of Salvation and no concept of scriptural Revelation. Christian dialogue based on scripture is offensive to many Wiccans as it assumes they place the same value on scripture as Revelation as Christians do, and is therefore imposing an alien reality upon them.
Additionally, coming from a soteriological point of view is meaningless. Salvation simply does not exist for Wiccans, as the faith is at roots monist, where there is no break between utmost divinity and humanity. Many Wiccans are deeply offended by evangelistic approaches. They find the root assumption of most evangelists that Christianity is a clearer truth than their own faith problematic to say the least. Wiccan theology holds that divinity is found fully within each human and each human is both blessed by their existence and can by their own efforts know divinity. This is a sacred conception. It is every bit as solid, real, sacred and precious to Wiccans as Christ is to Christians.
Since Wicca partakes of and grew out of modernity it values individuality, pluralism and diversity. These values are almost as sacred to Wiccans as any other tenants of their faith. Attempts to present traditional conceptions of sodality, unity and conformity in practice and belief will be found alien and offensive. We may not accept these views, we may not like them, but we have to respect that Wiccans hold them dearly. They are sacred tenants of the faith.
So, somehow we need to find a balance where we can honestly accept the right of each other to hold these contradictory views. More on that later, maybe 🙂