Compass: June 20

Druids, Witches & other Pagans meet the challenges of adapting their religions to the southern hemisphere.

In case you hadn’t noticed, Compass premiere episodes are on ABC TV Plus, which is a tad confusing given a repeat also happens on Sundays on the primary channel, 7 days later.

Tonight the premiere episode looks at “Pagans Down Under.”

Each year more and more Australians are moving away from mainstream religions, with some turning to their own sources of spirituality. This movement has been a rebirth for ancient religions. Pagans Down Under explores the private rituals, challenges and celebrations of Australians recreating ancient Pagan traditions for the southern hemisphere.

Druid and Wicca practitioners explore the dramatic rituals celebrating the turning of the seasons and the mysteries of sex, death, and human existence. Old customs are given a modern twist as Druids come together for the evocative burning of the Wicker Man and experience a summer Christmas through a local Pagan lens.

These nature-based Pagan rituals face unique challenges south of the equator. Australia’s vast continent is sacred to Aboriginal communities; some Indigenous Elders believe that certain Pagan ritual practices can disrupt the songlines, as Larrakia Elder Bilawara Lee explains. Academics Dr Caroline Tully and Professor Douglas Ezzy provide further creative and critical insights into contemporary Witchcraft and Paganism.

Pagans Down Under is a refreshing, uniquely Australian perspective on the private rituals, experiences and festivities of Druids, Witches and other Pagans as they meet the challenges of adapting their religions to the southern hemisphere.

Director and Editor: Helen Browning. Executive Producer: Rachel Clements. Producers: James Bradley and Helen Browning. Executive Producer, Compass: Jessica Douglas-Henry.

8:00pm Sunday 20th June ABC TV Plus.

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