Odinism: Our Natural Way
The Odinic Rite
Odinists Say "Yes!" To Life
A WAY OF LIFE
Religion is the spiritual expression of what we are. It is the way we live, our attitudes and the way we think, and this is decided by the accumulated wisdom and experience we have inherited from our ancestors.
All true religion is organic. Each people has its indigenous organic religion with roots extending deep into the history of its race. Odinism is the organic religion of the peoples of Northern Europe. Our ancestors who followed it were renowned for qualities that formed part of their way of life- their religion-and reflected their awareness of a unity in which the cosmos is one with man and nature.
When Christianity was introduced into Britain fifteen centuries ago Odinism did not whither and die but survived at the very heart of the new religion, its traditions conserved or superficially Christianised and its festivals borrowed and renamed.
In recent years Odinism has re-emerged as a seperate force in response to the spiritual and moral crisis that has so greatly damaged the credibility of the churches. So what is Odinism? And what do Odinists believe?
Odinists aim at creating a restored order based on the ideal of respect for all life and on the explicit recognition of spirituality within ourselves and in the world in which we live, to extend our views of nature so that it is seen as a true manifestation of the spirit.
We know that our gods exist: we can see, feel and sense them. They are manifested in various forms: in the summer and the winter, sunshine and storm, hill and river and plain. Because it is in keeping with our culture and our tradition, Odinists give names to the gods who show themselves to us in this way: Thor, Frey, Baldur, Odin and many others. They provide the subjects about which numerous ancient legends have been created and preserved in the Eddas, in the Lay of the Nibelungs (on which Wagner's "Ring" is based) and in the folk tales of our countryside.
Our principal god is Odin. He is represented to us as spirit which, like air and breath, is invisible and all-pervasive, manifested in all the phenomena of the intellect which includes the will, memory, imagination, creative power and inspiration.
There is nothing unusual or illogical in this Odinist use of an ancient mythology. All religions are mythical in ther development. It is not the myth that we believe in but the gods whom the myth helps us to understand.
Odinists place a high value on personal freedom, both in worldly and in spiritual matters. Odinism aims at producing a correct balance between body and spirit. It stresses the importance of personal wholeness, physical and spiritual, the need to be active, self-reliant, willing to take risks. Which is why Odinists are taught to train themselves in self-discipline and are bound by a stringent code of conduct which permits no shirking of duty.
Because we have free will each individual is responsible for his actions. So Odinists refuse to avail themselves of the fashionable alibi which shows greater compassion for the violator than for the violated. Odinists are not taught that human fault must rest always on somebody else's shoulders or that responsibility for behaviour damaging to society must invariably be attributed to society itself. Neither does Odinism accept that human beings are born perfectible and identical, so that unpleasant divergencies must be the product of unpleasant environments. And Odinists oppose the injustice that occurs when worth fails of recognition and the unworthy go rewarded.
One of the most damaging consequences of uprooting ourselves from the gods- of seperating ourselves from nature- is the atrophy of respect for ourselves and for the interests of the wider community. The foundations of personal and communal regeneration lie in a restoration of belief in the spirituality of the individual, in his acceptance of his own worth and in his renewal of service and loyalty to the family and the community.
HOME AND FAMILY
Odinists seek to banish alienation, restore community and establish just relations among our people. We regard the family and the home as a main foundation of our religion, believing that honour and family are more important than vague formulas about loving one's neighbors. This is more than mere sentiment, it is a guarantee of liberty. For where the family is functioning in its proper role the power of competing entities such as the State will be limited. Where the family and other loyalty groups do not exists power tends to gravitate to the State by default and freedom is threatened.
We have always been strongly devoted to the clan and today the clan, the extended family, is as important to us as ever. Our freedom is bound by loyalty to family, kin and friends and it matters that we should use our freedom for their benefit. Closely connected with our regard for these things is attachment to the land in which our fathers lived and worked, to which they gave their loyalty and for which they died.
Just as there is diversity in nature so we welcome diversity among the peoples and cultures of the world in opposition to universal monoculture. So we seek to preserve our own culture and to honor our history and although we wish sincerely to understand others we must know ourselves first, for Odinism is about man's understanding of himself. Whoever shall properly know himself shall know the gods and only with this knowledge can we react with justice and wisdom to others.
DEATH AND AFTER
Odinists do not regard this life merely as a time of preparation for "the next world" but are concerned with living a full and useful existence here and now. That death is not final we have the whole of nature as witness.
Birth, death and rebirth are continuing phenomena between which there is no division. We recognise a deep biological and spiritual unity between all men, living, dead and yet to be born, and we view the chain of generations as a time-transcending unity unfettered by narrow conceptions of past, present and future. Just as we are formed of material derived from our parents, the blood of father and mother, so we know that the spirits of our ancestors, being immortal, continue to live in us.
WHAT TO DO?
We must try to put Odinist precepts into all our actions. We know that we have to stop thinking of ourselves as things apart from nature and that we must reintegrate with nature in the way that we think and behave. We must bear witness at every moment of the day to the laws of Odin. Each time that we speak out against tyranny, are hospitable to guests or help to protect the environment we are performing a religious act.
The mission of Odinism is dramatised and symbolised in our celebration of life and of mind, of labor and enterprise, of the family and of the ancestors. We have our naming ceremony and our ceremonies of profession, handfasting (marriage) and cremation. Many of us must practice our religion alone but where possible we organise household groups (garths and hearths) and public assemblies (hofs) to celebrate the liturgy and to allow comradeship.
Today we are surrounded by spiritual and moral aridity. Our values are under constant attack by the economic collectivists, by the genetic engineers and the missionaries of the slave religions, none of whom can tolerate the existence of the individual, of the free man. Odinism offers us the chance to play an active part in the fight against these forces, which is part of the eternal struggle between the free and the slave. It is not a spare-time religion providing an escape route from the problems of modern life by invoking visions of the romantic past but an opportunity for the individual to grow in self-reliance, to grow closer to nature in the practice of the ancient rituals of our ancestors and to secure the future.
If any of this strikes a responsive chord in your soul, if these things seem important to you, you probably belong in the Odinist community. Contact us at the link below: