SOME would call it the Devil’s work. Two ancient religions have locked horns in a bizarre “freedom of speech” row that is echoing around the corridors of one of Scotland’s oldest academic institutions.
The University of Edinburgh has granted permission to the Pagan Society to hold its annual conference – involving talks on witchcraft, pagan weddings and tribal dancing – on campus next month. Druids, heathens, shamans and witches are expected to attend what is a major event in the pagan calendar.
But the move has enraged the Christian Union, which accuses the university of double standards after banning one of its events on the “dangers” of homosexuality.
Matthew Tindale, an Edinburgh-based Christian Union staff worker, claimed some faiths and beliefs appeared to be more equal than others on campus.
“This seems to be a clear case of discrimination,” he said. “It’s okay for other religions, such as the pagans, to have their say at the university, but there appears to be a reluctance to allow Christians to do the same. All we are asking for is the tolerance that is afforded to other faiths and organisations.”