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Bavarian Raven

Germanic/Norse Religions...

64 posts in this topic

I would like to point out something people seem little aware of -- the Norse and Germanic religions are part of a much larger Indo-European group of religions, and line up with the Indo-European languages. Thus the Slavic, original Persian (before Zoroastrianism), Indian, Hittite, Greco-Roman and Celtic religions all appear to have had a common root.

They all tend to have anthropomorphic super-man and super-woman quasi-immortal deities who form a family with each deity having certain special animals and places holy to them, and specializing in something -- hence a god of war, a god of agriculture, a god of the family, a god of thunder, and so on. Indeed, these religions were so similar that generally even the locals identified the foreign deities with their own.

The line-up of these religions with other cultural similarities, and especially the Indo-European language families, indicates common cultural origins. Later of course Semitic religions came to dominate most of these regions, except in India where Hinduism shows signs of the old ideas but mixed with earlier Indian ideas of reincarnation and karma.

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Posted (edited)

^

I don't have as many issues with the hypothesis of a PIE religion than I do with Hislop's method of comparative religion.

And can you believe that some are actually attempting to reconstruct a PIE religion? I cannot imagine they are aiming for accuracy.

Edited by Leave Britney alone!

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Such reconstructions are valid and have a sensible method. They have even succeeded in predicting the presence of characteristics not found in descendants but later shown to have been present. (For example certain affixes were predicted for Indo-European and were later found when Hittite was deciphered).

My main interest is in discerning what aspects of Indian religions come from the early Indus valley civilizations and which were later introduced with the Indo-Aryan invasions. It begins to appear that this may not be at all straightforward as there seems to have been considerable interchange between the Indus Valley and central Asian cultures from very early on. Still, the basic India concepts of rebirth (reincarnation) and karma found in all India-derived religions and the massive pantheon found only in Hinduism clues one in that the pantheon was introduced but the more philosophical ideas are in India more ancient.

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I don't know the language but you could probably learn more form a video like this (and notice the clothes is rather normal):

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This is simply a Norwegian summer folklore practice. I doubt any of these people are pagans at all. What they do is no different to Slavs celebrating Ivan Kupala. Or even English children dancing around a Maypole. These things may, or may not, have a pagan origin, but they are practised by, highly likely, Christian members of the public, not specificaly by pagans. I rate this poor attempt by you to spread dis-information at

31b40c50e811.jpg

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Thank you for making that clear for us. It was indeed my attempt to try and find something along the lines of Folketro practice, as practiced by pagans. I seemed to have failed here so the OP and others if interested will have to revert back to my advice in post #16 if they are interested in researching that (non-reconstructionist) aspect of (traditionalist) paganism.

You also seem to be partially right in this instance.

It celebrated the typical Norwegian midsummer in the archipelago of flowers! At the same time drawn the connection to the outside world and the worship of the sun, nature and fertility for thousands of years.

http://www.nrk.no/skole/klippdetalj?topic=nrk:klipp/648919

I would still prefer to hear what Kari Vogt, historian of religion (previously with the University of Oslo), and Asgjerd Taksdal, former cultural heritage manager, have to say about your statement especially the part on whether or not they have a pagan origin. Most likely they would use more tact and be less agressive overall as well, try it sometime!

Just to shed more light on that video in particular I will add the following.

'At this time of year, we dance around a maypole, drink and eat - for many it's bigger than Christmas,' says Claes. Certainly more nostalgic.

...

There's a strong desire for escapism and nostalgia. Perhaps that explains the continuing ritual of the rising of the the Midsummer pole. Said to have been brought to Sweden in the 15th century by German merchants, the maypole is traditionally clad with leafy branches and flowers.

'Everyone joins in, young and old,' says Claes, demonstrating his favourite dance - Sma Grodorna or Tiny Frogs, which involves crazed hopping in a circle

...

Celebrating the summer solstice predates Christianity. Nature is king, and eroticism and fertility are recurring themes. Legend has it that on the evening before the longest day, girls should pick seven wild flowers, including buttercups and forget-me-nots, and place them under their pillows to dream of their future husbands.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/travel/article-2158323/Sweden-summer-breaks-Midsummer-madness-Stockholm-Sandhamn.html

As in Denmark, Sankthansaften is celebrated on June 23 in Norway. The day is also called Jonsok, which means "John's wake", important in Roman Catholic times with pilgrimages to churches and holy springs. For instance, up until 1840 there was a pilgrimage to the stave church in Røldal (southwest Norway) whose crucifix was said to have healing powers. Today, however, Sankthansaften is largely regarded as a secular or even pre-Christian event.

In most places the main event is the burning of a large bonfire. In parts of Norway a custom of arranging mock marriages, both between adults and between children, is still kept alive. The wedding was meant to symbolize the blossoming of new life. Such weddings are known to have taken place in the 1800s, but the custom is believed to be older.

It is also said that if a girl puts flowers under her pillow that night, she will dream of her future husband.

Keep in mind that we all have our own values, here are a couple of mine:

Traditionalism>reconstructionism

Christopaganism (open acceptance)>Christian vs pagan (hatred, agression, and exclusion)

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BTW in Norway only 32% of the population even believe in God. Only 12% attend church monthly...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianity_in_Norway

You might consider ammending your earlier statement where you claimed, "but they are practised by, highly likely, Christian members of the public."

Your point still stands that those in that video are highly likely not Neopagan. Still, I would rather partake in that custom than pretend we are ancients or wrap myself in Egyptian symbols.

q:

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....You also seem to be partially right in this instance.....

....Most likely they would use more tact and be less agressive overall as well, try it sometime!....

How pompous and insulting, and this from somebody who sends me insulting PMs. Mister, you are a joker, but you are not funny.

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Second attempt. Notice the clothes...

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Posted (edited)

I also found an explanation for the above video.

A Blót and thing in Sweden performed by the Forn Sed Asssembly “Samfundet Forn Sed Sverige”. A bit “chatty” in the beginning as it is also meant as a presentation with explanations.

Otherwise very down to earth.

  • Explanations for newcomers.
  • Calling the weights by song and rattlings of keys.
  • Invoking Forseti, Syn and other mights declaring thing frith..
  • Turning indoors for thing and continued blót with banquette.
  • Toasts, the drinking of minni and bragafull.
  • Continued informal gathering.

A very contemporary expression of Forn Sed in Sweden.

http://westernmyster...riges-tingsblot

beautiful song @ 11:20 mark

Edited by Leave Britney alone!

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BTW in Norway only 32% of the population even believe in God. Only 12% attend church monthly...

http://en.wikipedia....anity_in_Norway

You might consider ammending your earlier statement where you claimed, "but they are practised by, highly likely, Christian members of the public."

Your point still stands that those in that video are highly likely not Neopagan. Still, I would rather partake in that custom than pretend we are ancients or wrap myself in Egyptian symbols.

q:

BS, nothing but BS, and you know it. You have derailed this thread deliberately, shamefull

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Posted (edited)

I really cannot be bothered any longer to deal with a..hole trolls like Leave Britney alone

There, the thread derailed because of you a..hole

Go to hell

Edited by Atentutankh-pasheri

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I dont think any modern human can understand or live a religion from the past, anymore than they can become a person from such an age.

We are a product of the times and millieu we live in. How could a modern person actually sacrifice to the forest, every time they entered the forest, so that the spirits of the forest did not harm him. What modern man would be terrified when entering a forest of the spirits within it? Yes they can still chose to offer a sacrifice but how do they construct an innate and absolute belief that very real, conscious and powerful, spirits dwell in the forest; some harmful and some helpful.

How could a modern human actually justify sacrificing a small part of every beer or glass of wine he drank, to the earth to ensure the beer/wine was well made and healthy and that next years harvest would be good.?

. What modern humans actualy believe that everything in the world is as much spiritual as material, and that nothing happens, from birth to death, without the interaction of a real and physical spiritual world lying right along side us

CAn a modern human really accept a belief about the female nature of the moon and the masculine power of the sun? And know absolutely, deep inside them selves, that these are conscious powerful entities which require worship and placating if we are to live comfortably and safely?

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I would say we can understand and even admire these beliefs without believing them ourselves.

If we cultivate it, we can develop a sense of a spiritual presence, of otherness, of even the presence of an unseen sentience, all around us. We can even move our mind outside our physical body, although this takes a lot of practice and may not be worth the effort as such a mind cannot do anything without a physical body to do it.

In fact, one can even sense the presence of God or Holy Spirit or the Tao, depending on your tradition (Buddhists have a harder time with this one).

Is this sort of thing real or just mental gymnastics? I tend to think it is rather real at least much of the time, but extremely easy to misinterpret and must be approached humbly, so that we don't go off thinking we are getting special messages from On High.

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I would say we can understand and even admire these beliefs without believing them ourselves.

If we cultivate it, we can develop a sense of a spiritual presence, of otherness, of even the presence of an unseen sentience, all around us. We can even move our mind outside our physical body, although this takes a lot of practice and may not be worth the effort as such a mind cannot do anything without a physical body to do it.

In fact, one can even sense the presence of God or Holy Spirit or the Tao, depending on your tradition (Buddhists have a harder time with this one).

Is this sort of thing real or just mental gymnastics? I tend to think it is rather real at least much of the time, but extremely easy to misinterpret and must be approached humbly, so that we don't go off thinking we are getting special messages from On High.

What is the difference betwen "getting special mesages from on high" and being interconnected withthe cosmic consciousness ie being communication with the consciousness of the universe.

Also a mind can do anything (and sometimes more ) than a physical body can do EXCEPT physically manipulate the physical world

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What is the difference betwen "getting special mesages from on high" and being interconnected withthe cosmic consciousness ie being communication with the consciousness of the universe.

Also a mind can do anything (and sometimes more ) than a physical body can do EXCEPT physically manipulate the physical world

Well manipulating the physical world is what being a human being is about.

I would say consciousness is not the same as actual conversation/exchange of words/hearing voices. I would also say that it is extremely easy to fool ourselves on these matters so a good deal of humility is called for.

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Well manipulating the physical world is what being a human being is about.

I would say consciousness is not the same as actual conversation/exchange of words/hearing voices. I would also say that it is extremely easy to fool ourselves on these matters so a good deal of humility is called for.

Even for a person with my ego and self esteem, humility is the natural response to an encounter with something much more ancient, evolved, wiser and more powerful than my self. :innocent:

On the other hand, the realisation that this consciousness is in part within me and that i am with in it, negates some of that humilty. It is a natural, symbiotic, relationship; but one fromm which i suspect i get more than the cosmic conscuousness does. On the other hand that consciousness is in part made up from individaul consciousnesses like mine and does gain incrementally from my addition to it. It also enjoys the converse and teaching /learning relationship as a mentor. it is hard for a part of something to be humble about the totality of which it is a part. Every part of that consciousness contributes to the whole.

Humans manipulate the environment first by their consciousness (imagination extrapolation planning etc) then using our bodies to shape things. With our present technology we can skip the body manipulation and direct our consciousness to alter the environmant to build and destroy by directly interfacing our consciousness with machines, and not using our physicla bodies at all..

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Posted (edited)

I dont think any modern human can understand or live a religion from the past, anymore than they can become a person from such an age.

We are a product of the times and millieu we live in. How could a modern person actually sacrifice to the forest, every time they entered the forest, so that the spirits of the forest did not harm him. What modern man would be terrified when entering a forest of the spirits within it? Yes they can still chose to offer a sacrifice but how do they construct an innate and absolute belief that very real, conscious and powerful, spirits dwell in the forest; some harmful and some helpful.

How could a modern human actually justify sacrificing a small part of every beer or glass of wine he drank, to the earth to ensure the beer/wine was well made and healthy and that next years harvest would be good.?

. What modern humans actualy believe that everything in the world is as much spiritual as material, and that nothing happens, from birth to death, without the interaction of a real and physical spiritual world lying right along side us

CAn a modern human really accept a belief about the female nature of the moon and the masculine power of the sun? And know absolutely, deep inside them selves, that these are conscious powerful entities which require worship and placating if we are to live comfortably and safely?

There are many types of Pagan believe and worship. You read some account, or see some youtube video of people engaging in some religious practice in a forest, and may think this is someting done on a regualr basis, or that before stepping into forest or drinking, eating etc, some ritual must take place to, appease the gods?. All this is not so. People who are practising Christian will go to church at least once a week, will say grace before a meal. This not any diffrent to any Pagan practise?. Besides, it is mostly the case that Pagans, at least were I am, will only go into forest for some ceremony on a few days a year, particulary for Maslenitsa, an end of Winter festival that has been mingled with start of Spring, Christian Easter. Or for Ivan Kupala, the summer solstice that has been taken over by Christianity. Ivan Kupala equates to John the Babtist, though the fire ceremonies go back millenia in Slavic lands. Certainly people do not have these ceremonies every week, or even every month, unlike "modern" religions that seem to have an almost compulsive obssesive attraction to all manner of practices even more fanciful than any Pagan. There is no fear of "monsters" in the dark forest, or anywhere else.

May I presume you also not approve of Christian communion, saying of grace, or of men dressed in variations of late Roman Empire court dress doing some sort of magic ceremony :)

Edited by Atentutankh-pasheri

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Posted (edited)

This is a "Veles Circle" at a Maslenitsa ceremony at Tula in 2005. Simply posted as an example, and it also has captions for a translation, dreadful, but better than nothing. And probably too boring, and Russian, for any to bother looking at :)

http://youtu.be/l1N0LMnEHfs

Edited by Atentutankh-pasheri

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Posted (edited)

I add this video too show that I am making a comparison. Very many are Christians, and many Christians are Orthodox, Catholics or Anglicans that have these arcane ceremonies and forms of dress and the "magic" tricks of turning water into blood and bread into flesh. Yet Pagans are laughed at if they try to resurect the old religions. "Oh what funny clothes they wear, Oh now ridiculous they are" is the cry. So, what is ridiculous when comparing the video in my post above to this one?

And please notice the two fans bearers to either side of the Pope, just like a pagan pharoah, same style of fans as well. Looks to me like a religion wrapping itself with pagan Egyptian symbols....

Edited by Atentutankh-pasheri

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Roman Catholic is pagan disguised as Christian.

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Posted (edited)

There are many types of Pagan believe and worship. You read some account, or see some youtube video of people engaging in some religious practice in a forest, and may think this is someting done on a regualr basis, or that before stepping into forest or drinking, eating etc, some ritual must take place to, appease the gods?. All this is not so. People who are practising Christian will go to church at least once a week, will say grace before a meal. This not any diffrent to any Pagan practise?. Besides, it is mostly the case that Pagans, at least were I am, will only go into forest for some ceremony on a few days a year, particulary for Maslenitsa, an end of Winter festival that has been mingled with start of Spring, Christian Easter. Or for Ivan Kupala, the summer solstice that has been taken over by Christianity. Ivan Kupala equates to John the Babtist, though the fire ceremonies go back millenia in Slavic lands. Certainly people do not have these ceremonies every week, or even every month, unlike "modern" religions that seem to have an almost compulsive obssesive attraction to all manner of practices even more fanciful than any Pagan. There is no fear of "monsters" in the dark forest, or anywhere else.

May I presume you also not approve of Christian communion, saying of grace, or of men dressed in variations of late Roman Empire court dress doing some sort of magic ceremony :)

Oh I "approve" of pagan type worship. It is a direct form of communion with the cosmic consciousness. I have long and profitable conversations with trees and other forms of nature. It is not their consciousness with which I converse but with the universal or cosmic consciousness which permeates all life . So where some, as an example, might sense tree dryads, I connect directly to the cosmic consciousness via the tree, rather than perceive a tree occupied by its own spirit or dryad.

I am just saying that in a post modern world the total mindset required to really have faith in this form of worship is extremely difficult to create, because scientific knowledge gets in the road of it. Science doesnt really conflict with a basic christian jewish or muslim type belief in god but especailly if you are a non creationist, but it does directly conflict with the older pagan beliefs.

I count pagan as those early earth type beliefs from the first babylonian and other types, through to much later celtic religious forms. Shamanism continued in russia up until last century, with a direct link to earlier practices.

I base my knowledge and understanding of pagan practices on historical knowledge rather than modern forms, of not just the practices but the very integral belief sets which caused the practices.

Early bablonian writings and quite modern australian aboriginal lore both illustrate humans where the physcial and metaphysical worlds are completely connected, and nothing physical happens without a spiritual or metaphysicla counter part to it.

No early human (pagan woud enter a forest, cross a stream, or hunt an animal, with out specific care thought and prepartion to accomodate the spiritual elemants found in all those things. Food, beer, even the mud bricks of ancient sumeria were held to be an integral part of a spiritual world, not just, as modern humans see them, a purely physical one. Pagans sensed/knew the self awareness within themselves, and on the basis of that, attributed a similar sense of self awareness and purpose to EVERYTHING in their world.

Edited by Mr Walker
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I add this video too show that I am making a comparison. Very many are Christians, and many Christians are Orthodox, Catholics or Anglicans that have these arcane ceremonies and forms of dress and the "magic" tricks of turning water into blood and bread into flesh. Yet Pagans are laughed at if they try to resurect the old religions. "Oh what funny clothes they wear, Oh now ridiculous they are" is the cry. So, what is ridiculous when comparing the video in my post above to this one?

And please notice the two fans bearers to either side of the Pope, just like a pagan pharoah, same style of fans as well. Looks to me like a religion wrapping itself with pagan Egyptian symbols....

I understand what you're saying and agree with most of this. Just two things I wanted to point out:

1. It's wine for blood not water but that's just me being pedantic.

2. Certainly in Anglican Churches, the wine and bread just represent blood and flesh. They don't believe they actually become these things. I think Catholics do, however.

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2. Certainly in Anglican Churches, the wine and bread just represent blood and flesh. They don't believe they actually become these things. I think Catholics do, however.

Consubstantiation, all about blood, and so much blood spilled because of arguments over this word......

However, I had thought my words would find general agreement with some Christians. I think the puritans, and I mean that in historical sense, not pejorative, were probably correct.

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@Mr Walker. Yes, I agree with you. I think I may have slightly misunderstood the sense of your post I quoted. Some of this is a struggle within our own minds between the rational and the irrational. We like the idea of (friendly) elves and such inhabiting our forests, but know in reality it is total nonsense. Sometimes.... :)

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Animism can be said to not really be a religion but just a way of looking at the world where the line between conscious sentience is drawn differently than we draw it. If you perceive all of nature, not just animals but trees and rivers and hills and the sky and its phenomena and so on as having its own consciousness, different though it may be from yours, then it is only natural to offer respect to these things and be polite (that is, greet them).

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