The religions of the ancient Old World are alive and well right here in Texas,
albeit in an altered form. But who practices these arcane forms of spirituality? The Neopagans, of course, and
their applications are not always arcane. These people belong to a larger religious group responsible for the revitalization
of the polytheistic religions of (primarily) Europe and Asia. They practice these religions in a number of modern traditions,
including Wicca, various forms of Witchcraft, and Druidism.
In 2000, as part of his anthropology thesis research, Judd conducted ethnographic research amongst
a congregation of Neopagans in Abilene, Texas. Since then, he has continued and expanded his research, with
a book in the works. One of the most interesting things about modern pagans is that they are, collectively, a storehouse
of mythology. They adapt it for their purposes and the observer finds that mythology has some novel and practical functions
in Neopaganism (as it does in any religion). Neopagans literally keep myths alive.
USAV members have observed and research Neopaganism in a variety of places in West Texas
including Abilene, Amarillo, Dumas, Lubbock, and Merkel. This ethnographic project is ongoing and focuses on the
adaptation and fucntion of mythology amongst the Neopagans of Texas.