Asatru, an interesting point

I am always wandering around the web, exploring, digging for information, and learning; yeah we will call it learning.  If you know me, you know I am not particularly a religious person either, sure I believe in God but I do not really care for an established church. In my observations, modern churches are usually nothing more than a social organization that gives people a place to gather. In many cases the churches and people therein, are nothing more that hypocritical folks who think they know better than someone else. Not all mind you, but many, and that has turned me away more times than not. First and for most, for anyone to claim they know the right way to a higher being, in my opinion is rather arrogant and a complete jump in, well, faith. One thing to add, because it has relevance to the next paragraphs, is that I have never understood how people around the world accept Christianity. I mean, can you trace your family back to Israel? I doubt it. Odds are your family can be traced back to Europe or Africa. So why do you accept a God who may or may not be the creation of some people from the middle of nowhere in the Middle East? If a guy from the Middle East was to tell you that you needed to live a certain way today, you would laugh him off, but here we are, millions of us, worshiping a god whose origins come people you are not connected to in anyway.

Anywho. Not why I came today. I stumbled upon this religion called Asatru today and started reading around their website, they make some interesting points. Remember that my family can be traced back to Scotland, this helps, trust me.

Perhaps the best way to understand Asatru is to compare it with the more familiar American Indian spirituality. Both are tribal. Both honor the ancestors and both have much to teach us about our connection with the natural world around us. Both offer a noble set of values. Most relevant to the point we are trying to make, the Germanic Way and the Way of the American Indian are both native religions – the indigenous religions of specific peoples…..What is truly strange is to adopt a religion that began in another part of the globe, among people who were not our ancestors!

The above quote from this page, they make the point that we as a society accept ‘native’ Indian beliefs, those that are emerging out of Africa, yet when people bring up the ancient religions of  OUR VERY OWN ANCESTERS we consider them a cult, witches, etc. I think this comes directly from middle to late Middle Ages efforts of the Catholic Church to brandish people who followed similar beliefs as heretics and witches, they even took them to the stake. So this could merely be some manner of hold over belief that has been passed down. I am sure if I told my grandmother I was a Wiccan now she would immediately ask if I was a witch or if I was a Satan worshipper. I think it is a natural reaction the Church has been very good at promoting since around the 1500s. I have to say I agree with them. I have never been to Israel and until the US Army deployed me to Iraq, I had never crossed paths with anyone who walked in the Bible (I have been to a well that Mary supposedly drank from and crossed the paths that numerous people in the Bible walked, locations they visited). So what is my connection to them?

I really wonder about this. I think if you asked most of us if we felt a connection to the people in the past, most would say something to the effect “M family comes from______(fill in a European country)” and yet when asked about their religion, they claim ancestry with a religion that has absolutely nothing to do with where they people come from at all. To top it off, they are comfortable with it.

In short, Asatru is not some strange cult, nor something we have taken up casually, nor a historical hobby group. It is a native religion of a large and important part of the Earth’s population – the peoples of Europe. As such, it deserves respect just like the religion of the Indian peoples, the African nations, or any other group on Earth.

I have to say, these guys make some compelling and interesting points. Plus, I always thought Thor was a badasses.

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2 thoughts on “Asatru, an interesting point

  1. Hi!

    Thanks for dropping by the Asatru Folk Assembly site!

    It’s always cool to run into another Army vet (Or are you still active?). The Asatru Folk Assembly is working on a “faith book” for service members – I was finishing up the proofing last night – and we hope to have it out within a couple of weeks.

    I spent four years active, and another decade in the ARNG, with an Infantry MOS.

    Best regards,

    Steve McNallen
    Director, AFA

  2. Matt,
    My third time trying to comment! I am getting frustrated.

    Garry showed me your posting today on Asatru and I wanted to say a few things…..

    I also believe in God and I have spent the last few years tracing my ancestry as well….some common points.
    I have a hard time labeling the ‘brand’ of Christian I am….i.e. Methodist, Baptist…etc…you get the drift. For one thing, each will decide that certain passages in the Bible mean something different….
    Anyhow, not too very long ago I was in a church service…a few years ago perhaps…and the Junior Pastor was talking to the membership explaining that the church population was growing and that a new building was being considererd. He then proceeded to display on the big screen an architectural rendering of the building they were leaning towards. It was a monstrocity….ugly to the extreme…a large dome shaped thing the likes of which I have never seen. Then as he was discussing the merits of such a building and what would have to happen to make it a possibility…he accidentally called the congregation a ‘corporation’. Freudian slip? It really put me off to say the least! That may have been the last time I attended….or perhaps the time this same guy told everyone to come up front to ‘prove’ they loved Jesus. I was sitting in the back full of sorrow over the loss of my mother and just wanting to be left alone and maybe hear some words to make me feel better….then he looked right at me, in the eye, and said it again. I walked out.
    So, what’s my point? Trust in God is what is important, not trust in organized church groups. I suppose there shouldn’t be a connection between DNA and what religion you are because everyone should find peace and faith within themselves and through contemplation between themselves and who they believe to be their Higher Power. Why can’t all the good religions who believe in love for all humanity and ‘go forth and do no harm’, be correct in some way? America is the melting pot of the world. In the years to come there will such a mix of people nobody will be able to truly say they are a certain ancestry, at least not just one. Our natural environment sustains us, why can’t those dieties the Indians all over the world worshipped also be included? Just call the Higher Power the ‘Great I AM” or something. It’s as if all these religions fight amongst themselves as if there is a limited amount of space in the hereafter! And don’t get me started on the history of the Holy wars or about how some books of the Bible were left out! Or ‘Indulgences’ for that matter….don’t know that one? Look it up….Catholic church needed to raise funds and sold these about late 1400’s, early 1500’s. I just want the fighting over religion to end. I am sickened by one group of people who claim to have a good religion killing another group of people who believe something else…..chaos. Too many innocent lives lost before they have had a chance to grow up and feel certain that they too will go to a hereafter.
    I suppose I am a dreamer. I still believe in God…I feel his presence. But for some reason, I get the impression He really doesn’t care what name we use as long as we respect Him and stop hurting each other.
    I find your research on Asatru to be interesting. I have never heard of it before.
    Aunt Nancy

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