true heathenism

Heathen Racist Words/Phrases to Watch Out For

RefDuring my research into Heathenism, I have been discovering undertones of racism in the strangest places. Just today, I picked up a version of the Poetic Edda to find the translation and the author’s explanation to be riddled with supremacist rhetoric. So I wanted to create a hot list, so to speak, of words and phrases to watch out for. If you see them, be wary for you may be reading some racist propaganda mixed in with your Heathenry. 

The Hot List: 

  • “Protect our Heritage”
  • “Preservation of our Heritage”
  • “Universalism” [this is not a bad word, but many racist materials will condemn universalism]
  • “Internationalism”  [this is not a bad word, but many racist materials will condemn universalism] 
  • “Heathenism’s True Followers”
  • “True Heathenism”
  • Overemphasis on our Ancestors or the Ancestors of those Practicing Heathenry
  • References to being “Born with Heathenry in your blood”
  • References to blood purityReferences to anything “running in your blood or heritage”
  • Overemphasis of Heathenism belonging only to Northern European peoples
  • A failure to mention that ANYONE can practice Heathenry, or a failure to use open invitation/welcoming rhetoric for anyone who may be picking up the book. 

Please keep adding more. 

Heathens against Racism

They Are NOT Asatru

“Odin’s Chosen Wolves of Valhalla” is an Odinist hate group located in Southern Germany. We do not want to mince words when we say THEY ARE NOT ASATRU. Everything they believe is a perversion of the gods and the faith. They dishonor their ancestors and give modern Heathens a bad name.

The paragraph above is fairly common. To be perfectly honest we ourselves are guilty of falling in to that line of logic. It’s not hard understanding why. Humans are simple creatures. We are hard-wired with a gut instinct to have knee-jerk reactions at the slightest sensory input. It is a survival trait that served our ancestors well, however in the 21st century it is a trait that can sometimes lead us to incorrect conclusions.

“Odin’s Chosen Wolves of Valhalla” does not exist, at least not to the extent of my understanding. There are certainly groups in the world that fit the description but we’re addressing a broader concept here. The made-up text also acts as a snippet that will be seen and shared with the fight-or-flight gut reaction. There will be people who only see that text and share this believing they are spreading the word about yet another hate group, but that is not the case. In that way, we can see just how easily this instinct leads us to unknowingly spread false information in the modern age.

This isn’t a personal fault of any one individual but rather a shared trait. With information so readily available at our fingertips it’s all too easy to see the first lines of text in an article and feel that reaction and need to simply click a button to vent your frustration at the perceived idea of the information that article will contain. So, I beg you, if you have a friend who shared this article under that false pretense please do not hold it against them. Instead try to open a dialogue and discuss how easily our hearts trick our minds in to jumping to the wrong assumptions.

It is said that when we react to something our very first initial thought is our conditioning. We see an individual and it is simply in our nature to judge them. This goes back to those survival instincts. Our ancestors couldn’t afford to sit there staring at the shaking bush wondering if it was a tiger or their cousin back there. These reactions are based on instinct as well as information we are given throughout our lifetime. Someone with a visible disease is potentially dangerous, that individual stalking down the street is a potential threat, someone who stumbles over finding the right words to say is soft-minded. These are all snap judgments that it is entirely too easy for us to find ourselves making.

The logic then follows that the second thought we have in reaction to a person or an event defines who we are. On our deepest level, we are simple animals. But it is our ability to overcome these instincts that defines us. It’s not always easy but overcoming these impulses is integral to society. It is this ability that I ask you to exercise as I move on to the main point of this article. It’s a difficult pill to swallow but it is an important theological and philosophical exercise.

When we see Heathens behaving in a disgusting and/or dishonorable way we want to distance ourselves from them. We want to proclaim to the world that they do not represent us and we are not associated with them. However, this is known as the “No true Scotsman” fallacy. Defined by Wikipedia, “No true Scotsman” is a kind of informal fallacy in which one attempts to protect a universal generalization from counterexamples by changing the definition in an ad hoc fashion to exclude the counterexample.

For example, we could say “Heathens are not racist!” to which the counterpoint could be made “But those Heathens are.” And often the reaction to the counter example of our statement would be “Well they’re not REAL heathens!” This is the knee-jerk reaction that we have and again it is natural to wish to distance yourself from people exhibiting undesirable behavior.

But, perhaps unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that they ARE Heathens. They ARE Asatru. We share the bond to them through our gods the same way we are all connected in our humanity. Humans are a broad and diverse species which means that, by default, with a large sample size such as the general classification of Heathens there will always be outliers. This is true for all groups, not just Heathens. Almost by definition, every group will have members that the majority of the group do not like and do not wish to associate with.

This is a multi-faceted issue. From our perspective as members of the group in question we have to remember that the outliers may believe just as strongly or even more so that they belong in the group with us. From the outside, it is important to remember that the outliers do not represent the whole. No matter how unpleasant, noisy, or even violent they may be.

It is hard for us to admit but every human has the right to believe in any gods (or lack thereof) they wish. It is important to remember that behind the vitriol and negativity that can be displayed there is still a human being. A human being who you likely do not know with life experiences you can’t imagine. Our paths twist and turn throughout our lives to bring us to where we are and sometimes the negative and hateful people we interact with are in a bad place they may or may not escape eventually.

That isn’t to say you have to like them. You don’t even have to interact with them. But those people have domain over their own lives and are free to claim any god you can claim. It may make us feel good to denounce them and say, “they’re not a part of my group” but that doesn’t change the fact that they still identify as a member of the group. It is up to us to show compassion to these individuals. As I’ve stated many times it won’t be easy, but doing the right thing hardly ever is. We need to learn to refrain from reacting on our impulses and react with our heads.

In the end, you are only accountable for your own actions. Set a good example and some will follow. Be the counterexample to those who would paint us in a negative light and let THEM fall in to the logical fallacies of claiming that WE are not Asatruar. We know our gods and the deeds of others cannot take them from us. Remember the sentiment of the final line of Declaration 127.

“[They] are free to stand for whatever principles [they] see fit.
They are free to stand alone.”

Dear fellow “Pagans”.

For those who follow The Abyss of Darkness for some time now, know that once I liked True Norwegian Black Metal… I made artwork for it…. The flock loved it. But I slowly lost my interest for it. But why? Well that question is not hard to answer… It’s because Metalheads often seem more smart, more intelligent than others. (at least I thought so). But they are not. In fact they do the contrary of what they say they do and who they are. And almost non of them is bloody aware of it. They say they are anti-christian, meanwhile they use symbols which were made by christians. They wear shirts of their favorite bands who use anti christian imagery, but all they are actually doing is spreading christianity. Promoting it. By putting a lot of attention on it. This was to me “fake-rebellion”. And this goes too for the big band names out there who are even worse in doing this. So I left that scene behind me because of the idiots claiming to be True Norwegian Metalheads, pure anti-christian, satanic bastards…. Meanwhile each one of them was just a lame mortal doing the contrary of what that person said he did. I grew just very tired of it and left.


So I turned to a different path… A path of Germanic cultures… European Ancestry. A pre-christian Europe. I read books about european cultures… I looked up history from different perspectives… I learned a lot by doing so…. One thing it taught me in particular. Which is…. The amount of…… Numbnuts out here…. Who all LOVE paganism, European cultures…. The numbnuts who claim to be viking! Who did DNA tests and other ridiculous things to prove that they are “TRUE VIKINGS”!!!


All well and jolly for you, but let me spoil the fun for you here. The term Viking is a commercial term. A term to describe a certain type of warriors from the past. A term for people who lack the information about Germanic cultures, tribes and so forth. I can’t stand when people say they are viking. Because already by saying you’re a “viking” you are clearly not a “viking”. A viking is someone who was born in the area called: Víkin. And thus was called a Viking because of where he originated from. Which had nothing to do with the fearsome warriors most people link to the term vikings…

 
Also to become a “viking” one must plant a tree and grow it old. So old until one can build a house from that very tree. If one succeeded doing this, one was called a “viking”.  Other than that you were just a Norseman in this case. (Whilst living in scandinavia). Or a Germanic pagan/heathen living elsewhere in Germanic Europe. Also not to forget about the slavic parts of Europe. 

Whilst baring this in mind…. One might understand by reading this far, where my disappointment in my fellow “pagans” grows from… Because most of them are just a bunch of lame ignorant souls… Just like in the Black Metal scenes…. In both cases I thought wrong…. I thought I would find rather smart people…. But the smart ones are rare and few. Also pretty much on the background, probably shaking their heads watching you….  

Besides of that all, I’d like to say how tired I grow from everyone who is only focused on bloody scandinavia! In central, western and eastern Europe the same religion was practiced! Called Paganism! And Paganism is very broad. Meanwhile it was all the same! It variated in names and portrays but it’s very core was the same! Somehow everybody only looks at scandinavia but why? Because this bloody television show called “Vikings”? Because you were taught in school Vikings came from scandinavia??? Bugger off! Know the bloody history of Europe you slothful idiot!
Scandinavians are a bunch of twats who claim it all for themselves! But whole central, western and eastern Europe followed the same religion just as the “cool” and “heroic” norsemen from scandinavia! 

I’d like to end this message by saying: Stop…. Stop acting. But be. And know your forsaken roots! Stop pretending something which you are not. You’re not a viking… Your are a mortal, soon to die. Not going to Valhalla. Because in Valhalla pretending warriors do not exist. 


Heill,

-Ulvrh

Me, a Whumper, on Le Tumbleur…

*sees a fanfic post on my dashboard*

*scrolls down to the comments/tags*

“I can’t believe how sweet this is!”

#i love this

#the fluffiest fluff to ever fluff

*keeps scrolling*

*sees another fanfic on dash*

*scrolls to comments/tags*

“HOW COULD YOU DO THIS TO HIM?”

#what gave you the right?

#you’re a terrible human being

Me, a Whumper: IT’S STORYTIME, BITCHES

archiveofourown.org
The Fox and The Maiden Fair - A Shared Journey - Part Two Archive of Our Own
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works


It’s finally here. For my birthday girl @underthenorthstar.




Emer started wandering, completely absorbed by the beauty and wilderness of the place.


She could hear Ivar’s chariot behind her. Emer didn’t want to look at him. She was still angry. All she desired was to walk away from all the problems, melting into the ocean. The endless blue waves that didn’t care about humanity’s problems, it was like an immortal deity. She wondered how many stories it had witnessed. Lovers whose hearts were broken, mothers that lost their children by the terrible hand of war. Maybe the sea was made from their tears. What would be an explanation for why humans were so fascinated by the deep waters. It was like they were searching for the sorrow. Attracted by the suffering. Or maybe, they were all selkies, trying to get back to their origins in the bottom of the ocean.


They said if a woman shed seven tears into the sea, a male selkie would contact her. Emer had cried more than enough tears, but she didn’t want any other man in her life. It seemed to her they were the cause of her pain. Maybe she was not an unhappy woman in search of love from a being from another world. She might be a creature from the sea herself. She might have forgotten. Who stole my skin in this case? Forcing me to live among humans. Who stole me from myself? These questions didn’t leave her mind.


She longed to be one with the ocean she had never known. Her legs seemed to move of their own accord, they were leading her to the edge. Only this way she could be free.


Emer was in the edge, watching the waves crashing onto the shore, a lonely tear running down her cheek.


Ivar’s voice taking her away from her thoughts, “Come here, Emer. Let’s see the rest of the farm.”


She didn’t want to face him. He would know she was weak. A stupid and crying woman. Emer raised her hand to her face, cleaning her tears.


She looked back at him. He was offering his hand as an invitation. An almost kind smile playing on his lips. She thought he seemed even more gorgeous when he was relaxed.


She asked herself, “Why couldn’t it be always this way?”


“There is no space for me!”, she replied referring to his chariot. But, her question had a hidden meaning.

Shiro has lots of life hacks and knows how to look good with the absolute minimal effort like it’s Mastered. Keith is affronted bc “people think I’m the heathen but that’s not true you’re the real heathen takashi you’re just a secret one being DECEPTIVE and deceiving everyone with your dry shampoo and whatever else you’re doing”

Reason sits firm and holds the reins, and she will not let the feelings burst away and hurry her to wild chasms. The passions may rage furiously, like true heathens, as they are; and the desires may imagine all sorts of vain things; but judgement shall still have the last word in every argument, and the casting vote in every decision. Strong wind, earthquake-shock, and fire may pass by; but I shall follow the guiding of that still small voice which interprets the dictates of conscience.
—  Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
Cut to the Feeling

Written For: @showingthroughtome

Written By:  @fromherlips

Pairing: Niall/OFC

Word Count: 16,000

Warnings: language, mentions of sexual content and alcohol

Summary:

Lennox Sloane was always taught that you shouldn’t make assumptions about anyone unless you wanted to make an ass of yourself. Unfortunately, that lesson never stuck with her as much as the lectures on safe sex (no glove, no love), texting while driving (it can wait), and the proper way to consume alcohol (liquor before beer, you’re in the clear).

A story about night classes, snarky remarks, and learning lessons the hard way.

Keep reading

thekinderbeast  asked:

I saw a documentary recently, in which they said, Iceland became Christian basically because Denmark became Christian and imprisoned every Iceland not der on it's soil, sending an ultimatum to Iceland, that they would execute them, if Iceland wouldn't convert. A heathen law man, respected by Christians and Heathens alike, was in the end asked to decide. After some days he decided that Iceland should become Christian by name but in private every Icelander was free to do whatever. Can you confirm?

Sæl vinur,
(Hello friend,)

For the most part, yes, but also not exactly, because we should add a dash of ‘it’s complicated’ just to be safe. Allow me to briefly retell the story:

All of the parts are correct, but the interpretation of all those parts together is up for some debate. After all, documentaries are not exempt from having a bias, and not in the sense of having an agenda, but just because it is simply human nature to have certain inclinations. I suppose it is better to say that the documentary may have made some claims or assumptions that could be seen from various perspectives, and every interpretation is but one perspective out of many. I am finding myself being carried away in a moment of philosophical contemplation, so I digress (my apologies, but, in my defense, those are things we ought to think and talk about).

Anyway, Iceland was indeed pressured by Norway and not exactly Denmark. To be more specific, though, it was King Olaf Tryggvason who truly pressured the Icelanders, especially after his missionary, Thangbrand, returned from there with little success in 999.(1.) After this, the king not only imprisoned Icelanders as hostages (not a ton, mind you), but he also closed off Norwegian ports to Icelandic merchants.(2.) Now this was a big deal. Iceland was an island, after all, which meant that many goods needed to be imported. I would argue that it was not only the pressure from executing hostages that placed an ‘ultimatum’ on Iceland, but the economic strangling that King Olaf placed around their necks.

Yet, there were hostages, and they were the often the “sons and daughters of prominent Icelandic pagans.”(3.) Furthermore, King Olaf did threaten to “maim or kill [them] unless Iceland accepted Christianity.”(4.) Yet, this, as I mentioned above, was not the only force creating pressure. Believe it or not, there were already Christian Icelanders, some of which were fairly prominent, too.(5.) Why would they need to care about someone else’s family members? Unless they had some sort of bonds through kinship, they didn’t. 

There was something else on the line here, though. An aspect of Iceland’s foreign policy was to maintain a good relationship with Norway for two reasons: family and economic ties.(6.) Many Icelanders, whether pagan or Christian, had family in Norway, and therefore would prosper from continued positive relations. Furthermore, as already mentioned, Norway was Iceland’s major trading partner, and a falling through would be devastating on the economic front.

As for the “heathen law man,” his name was Thorgeir Thorkelsson, a chieftain (goði) from the farm of Ljósavatn in the Northern Quarter.(7) Most of what the documentary seems to have said pans out to be true, although his motives are, you guessed it, up for debate. Various accounts do agree, though, that he was indeed the Lawspeaker to make this decision.(8.) Here is an account from Njal’s Saga:

“Thorgeir lay for a whole day with a cloak spread over his head, and no one spoke to him. The next day people went to the Law Rock; Thorgeir asked for silence and spoke: ‘It appears to me that our affairs will be hopeless if we don’t all have the same law, for if the law is split then peace will be split, and we can’t live with that. Now I want to ask the heathens and the Christians whether they are willing to accept the law that I proclaim.’” 

They all assented to this. Thorgeir said that he wanted oaths from them and pledges that they would stick by them. They assented to this, and he took pledges from them.

‘This will be the foundation of our law,’ he said, ‘that all men in this land are to be Christians and believe in one God - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - and give up all worship of false idols, the exposure of children, and the eating of horse meat. Three years’ outlawry will be the penalty for open violations, but if these things are practiced in secret, there shall be no punishment.’

All of these heathen practices were forbidden a few years later, so that they could neither be practiced openly nor in secret.” (9.)

He was indeed a heathen, and he did, as illustrated above, for some unknown reason, deem that Iceland should adopt Christianity. It is also true that heathen practices were allowed afterwards, but not indefinitely. In Ari Thorgeirsson’s Íslendingabók, he says this about what happened afterwards:

“And he (Thorgeir Thorkelsson) brought his speech to a close in such a way that both sides agreed that everyone should have the same law, the one he decided to proclaim. It was then proclaimed in the laws that all people should be Christian, and that those in this country who had not yet been baptised should receive baptism; but the old laws should stand as regards the exposure of children and the eating of horse-flesh. People had the right to sacrifice in secret, if they wished, but it would be punishable by the lesser outlawry if witnesses were produced. And a few years later, these heathen provisions were abolished, like the others.” (10.)

So, given that account, people were “free to do whatever,” but only during this period of transition. Now, we may enter the realm of reasonable probability, but that, of course, comes with its limitations. Still, we can assume that it was quite possible that people still remained heathen for quite some time, yet this would have been difficult, mainly due to social pressures. It may have been more likely that some families retained their heathen traditions in somewhat of a hybrid religious state, in which they worshipped both Christ and the old gods. This was actually not unheard of. In Landnámabók, the Icelandic Book of Settlements, a man named Helgi the Lean is described as such:

“Helgi’s faith was very much mixed: he believed in Christ but invoked Thor when it came to voyages and difficult times.” (11.)


My final judgement is to say that this documentary was correct, of course, but not an ‘absolute truth’ on the matter. Besides there not being such a thing as an ‘absolute truth’, especially in regards to history, the documentary only provided one telling of a complicated tale; there were quite a few complications likely not discussed in the documentary. 

After all, there was more going on behind the scenes back when King Olaf was taking hostages. Furthermore, although Thorgeir allowed heathens to continue practice, this was only a temporary condition. Yet, even so, we do not truly know the reality that was in place. All we have are generalized accounts that tell us the ideal or legal standpoints. Let us not forget, either, that these very sources were written by the ‘winning’ party. As I said when I began this post, we all have a bias, whether we like it or not. There is no shame in this, but it must be known to properly handle the sources that we are given.

My advice, then, is to understand that documentaries, and even many works of academia, often only grant you one version of the story. Even the version I have told above leaves out certain details that honestly need consideration. Still, the documentary was not wrong, but there are always many levels of intricacy that truly need consideration before we can fully understand any given situation. 

Anyway, I truly am grateful that you asked this question. It was a pleasure to respond to it, and I do hope that you and many other prospers from my insights.

Með vinsemd og virðingu,
(With kindness and respect,)
Fjörn


FOOTNOTES:

1. Jesse L. Byock, Viking Age Iceland. (London: Penguin Books, 2001), 299.

2. Ibid.

3. Ibid.

4. Ibid.

5. I could talk about this for quite a while, but it would take us further from the question at hand than we ought to wander, at least for the time being.

6. Byock, 299.

7. Ibid., 300.

8. Ari Thorgeirsson’s Íslendingabók, chapter 7, and Njal’s Saga, chapter 105, give good accounts of this, and arguably with slightly different motives.

9. Robert Cook trans., Njal’s Saga, in The Complete Sagas of Icelanders, vol. III, edited by Viðar Hreinsson, Robert Cook, Terry Gunnell, Keneva Kunz, and Bernard Scudder. (Reykjavík: Leifur Eiríksson Publishing, 1997), 127-8. (Chapter 105, pages 180-1 in the Penguin edition)

10. Ari Thorgeirsson, The Book of the Icelanders: Íslendingabók, translated by Siân Grønlie, edited by Anthony Faulkes and Alison Finlay. (London: University College London, 20016), 9. (Chapter 7)

11. Hermann Pálsson and Paul Edwards trans., The Book of Settlements: Landnámabók. (repr., 1972; Manitoba: University of Manitoba Press, 2012), 97. (Chapter 218)