Jared Anderson Dr.

Kim Gunter English 3400-101 3 October 2010

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Nordic Heathenism

a Ásatrú: The Religion of the Norn
Ásatrú is the Nordic word for ³belief in many gods´ and is considered to be the true religion of northern European lands. It is connected to Celtic Druidism, Wicca, and Germanic Paganism as well as ancient Greek, Roman and Egyptian beliefs. Its origin has been long lost but before the Christianization of land in the early 1st century, the Ásatrú faith covered all of Northern Europe. Unlike its sisters, Wicca and Celtic druidism, which branched off into several different religions, Ásatrú has been reconstructed to follow the historic beliefs as closely as possible. The followers of the faith even prefer to be called traditional pagans rather than the title ³Neopagan´ that so often follows those that live the Hedonistic lifestyle. This religion follows the radical decline of Christianity in the world and the popularity of reverting to ones traditions based on their ancestors. As Ásatrú becomes more prevalent, it also gains the recognition as being a ³drafted´ religion, or in other words, publically accepted and tolerated. As the religion¶s popularity rises, many

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Logo courtesy of the Ásatrú Alliance: copyright (c) 1995 by Stephen A. McNallen

This land and its people differ greatly from that of Scandinavia. in an attempt to remove all other ³pagan´ religions. Only after years of bloodshed and the threat of economic isolation did the people finally submit. Northern Europeans deal with mountains. and those who did not were put to death or enslaved by the conquistadors. It was a tactic for survival and many insist that it is by the gods that the religion has survived. however. The most common to the Americas is the desolation of the Aztec and Mayan Indians. Historically. This same act of ³eliminating the competition´ occurred in the lands of Northern Europe. Almost all of their culture and religion was either wiped away or converted to forms of Christianity. and frigid winters in which they must survive. . it was a true testament to mankind¶s ability to not only survive. Iceland and Germany from the terrain to the climate and simply the tactics of survival that surround the people.followers believe that it is the proper religion for Europe as it is strongly connected to the culture and traditions of the lands. created and originally practiced in the Middle East. Christians would wipe out entire villages in a brutality. The people did not give up so willingly. Perhaps the most obvious discord between the Christian faith and Northern Europeans is the location. they simply killed those who did not convert. instead. but thrive as well. however. The Christian invaders did not have to burn hundreds of scrolls or destroy encrypted tablets containing religious information. It was far more devastating. because the tribal rituals of the Norn only spoke of the tales of the gods. The people were forced to change religions. Christianity was a faith that was drafted. terrible seas laden with ice. The people of the Norn established a lifestyle that relied greatly on personal strength and perseverance.

followers now strive to communicate the wish that people simply search the facts and their own heart and make a personal decision whether to join the belief or deny it. believers today find strength to conquer the storms of life. both are equally important to each other and must rely on their own strength to overcome obstacles. Honor. Discipline. The main function of Ásatrú is to ensure the nine noble virtues: Courage. or a belief in many gods. Hospitality. as the death of the Ásatrú is due to the Christianization of Europe. Industriousness. the reconstruction of the religion also is a great . The religion is founded on a tribal sense. ethnicity. so the importance of remaining in touch with all members of your ³clan´ is essential to the formulation and community of the belief. derive from Nordic mythology and many of the predictions and origin stories are the same. culture and mainly religion. The final goal of the Ásatrú is to eliminate the discriminations of the world such as race. The Ásatrú faith differs from most religions in that it is polytheistic.This strength relates to foundation and relationship between man and the gods. Fidelity. The gods. begging and pleading for a better life. Self-Reliance and Perseverance. Truth. sex. Ásatrú followers do not pray to the gods as many established religions do. forced upon the people and in some cases. There is mutuality between the gods and man. adopted for economic purposes. It also focuses greatly on the importance of the family. such as Odin and Thor. Since the Christian faith was influenced. Religious tolerance is highly important. These heroes give the followers of the faith a sense of epic standing in the world. as the gods gave the Vikings strength to conquer the seas. instead there is nobility amongst the two as kin rather than master and servant. One does not come humbly to the gods.

Ásatrú is the pure form of religious freedom. but if we look closer. To many. Ásatrú believes that man and the gods are equal and influence each other. once religious tolerance was permitted. In all historical accuracy. Norway. one may think that the religion conveys a sense of violence. Iceland and Scotland with the religion upon which these lands were originally operated. the main relation with the Ásatrú religion lays with the Vikings. we realize that there is great fallacy to those claims. instead it is simply a desire to reconnect with the ways of the past.attempt to reunite the culture of Scandinavia. Germany. as they are no longer needed for survival and prosperity. joy and communion with nature. it would be a desire. the religion never taught these attributes. It is not an argument or situation of religious intolerance. Christianity expresses that all men are free. their stories were never written by Norsemen. Remember. This being said. Those that connect with the ways of the Norn also desire to follow the religion that empowered their ancestors. Such a belief eliminates the concept of joy and happiness . This suggests that inevitably all mankind is immediately damned the very instant they enter the world. the historical records given of the Vikings were only ever written by their enemies. The religion would not condone the old ways. Many will openly convey that their religion also holds these standards true. in fact. If our homeland was to be raided and forced into a religion that we know nothing about. but in turn commands them to be slaves to a ruling god. men protect the gods¶ divinity as thegods protect men. Christianity also implements the condemning truth of original sin (guilt at birth). as most of their literature was a spoken revelation. the Vikings were no more brutal than most other tribes. to obtain the original beliefs that many of our forefathers believed in.

that the religion is solely a ³Whites-only´ community. The foundations are so closely related to those of Germanic Paganism and Celtic Druidism that it does connect with all of Europe. This is also falsified by the teaching of equality and tolerance for all walks of life. . or desire. strive to better themselves and are not afraid to find strength in themselves rather than rely on others to fix things for them. Ásatrú believes in virtues that teach how to live in harmony with all of the world rather than commandments. to honor the ways of their ancestors.and forces its followers into a spiral of demise. or the fertility of the earth (nature) and have a connection. due to the Northern European connection. It teaches that man is good until he proves himself evil. which is later ³rejuvenated´ through servant-hood to the one god. The religion is for those that find the greatest comfort from it. whether or not one shares a direct ancestry from Scandinavia. Many also think. This is the connection between the Anglo-Saxon laws and teachings of equality and fair trials. Even the word ³law´ comes from the Norse. It reaches out to those directly connected with the Venir.

" Asatru Alliance | Homepage. "Welcome to the Asatru Alliance. <http://www. Welcome Home. Jack.asatru.php>.org/index. . Longship Studio. 2010. Web. 02 Oct. 2010.a Works Cited Asatru Alliance.

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