Tag Archives: English

Ancestral Journeys: The Black Loyalists, Canada, and the Specter of Racism

Following the end of the American Revolutionary War in 1783 (Treaty of Paris) some 40,000+ British Loyalists withdrew from the newly formed United States of America to settle in various parts of the British Province of Quebec and the Colony of Nova Scotia.

Among their numbers were some 3,000 Afro-American Loyalists.

These settled primarily in Nova Scotia.

You might have heard of them within the context of the modern political narrative; of their unfair and/or inadequate treatment by the Crown; of the race riots that took place in Nova Scotia between the Loyalists; and of their subsequent petitioning of a rough third of those black Loyalists to the Crown for resettlement in some more hospitable climes. This petition was acknowledged and granted, resulting in the founding of Freetown, Sierra Leone in West Africa.

We hear much less of course of the stress, the hardships, the suffering and frustration, that all of the Loyalists were under those first couple of years; already disheartened (to say the least) at having come up on the losing side of the war. And thus being forced to abandon the lands of their birth and upbringing, along with most if not all of their worldly possessions. And then to be effectively dropped in the middle of the vast North American wilderness, to watch one’s loved ones go hungry when the promised rations did not come in, and then to meet with typical government ineptitude and inefficiency in the surveying and assigning of land.

Naturally, people were a little bit stressed. And so things got out a little out of hand. At least here and there.  And on an occasion or two. With both sub-groups of Loyalists giving and receiving their collective lumps.

These things can happen among men; who can afterwards be men about it.

See the source image

We also don’t hear too much today about how the 2,000 odd Afro-American Loyalists that remained in British North America fared after the departure of the fellows for Sierra Leone. You know, once order was brought to the chaos, foundation established, and folks settled into the patterns of their new lives and homelands. On this point the site blackloyalist.com states,

Economically, the Black Community’s position showed improvement within the decade. Many Blacks completed their indenture terms and more Blacks working as apprentices began to qualify for trades. By 1812, employers could not find enough Blacks to fill available work and wages rose accordingly. During the war of 1812, Blacks volunteered in militia and formed three separate Black Corps.

Now, as a descendant of the District of Mecklenburg Loyalists, I was a little taken aback by some of the complaints made, by people today I must assume, regarding the treatment of the black Loyalists. After all, we white Loyalists were also settled along ethnic and religious lines. We also starved the first few years. Some of us also left. We were also sent essential equipment that was entirely inadequate. In the case of some of us, receiving hatchets rather than proper axes as part of our initial supplies, with land needing clearing, cabins needing building, and winter quite literally coming. We also had to wait on surveys and deal with bungles, while the officers got better and more land. Some of us got lots (of land) that were basically useless. And we were also, particularly us Bay of Quinte folk, about as far as you could get outside of the established supply chain and still be considered part of it, ie. up two weeks (wilderness) travel, round trip.

We all had it hard.

But what really struck me from the quote above was the mention of trades, employers, and wages!

Seriously???

We didn’t have those things in 1812 Hastings county.

Maybe they had them in Kingston.

In fact, many of us fell into illiteracy for a generation or two, as we put our nose to the grind of simple survival and working toward the kind of prosperity that, in due time, ushers in things like trades, jobs, wages, and literacy. We bartered in labour with our neighbours and newcomers, and being so inconveniently situated in the supply chain, we were regularly low-balled by the merchants when we brought our produce to market; which is something I hear we made up for during the War of 1812.

But the point is that once we made it through the hard years, that were hard on all of us Loyalists, those that remained got our feet on the ground, settled and prospered.

While Afro-Americans are a rare sight in the historical records of the Bay of Quinte region (aka the District of Mecklenburg), they do appear here and there, and in much the same manner and capacity as most any other person in the region; being named in the censuses, being baptized, getting married, etc. As for Afro-American slaves, they simply were not a significant thing, as such, among us. It is said that Major Vanalstine brought some up with him after the war, but by 1793 the Act Against Slavery was passed in the second legislative assembly of Upper Canada, effectively Anglo-Canada, which prohibited the introduction of any more slaves into the colony, required that any existing offspring born to a slave woman be released upon reaching the age of 25 years, and even forbade voluntary submission to the state of slavery. And of course by 1834 the British parliament passed its Slavery Abolition Act which effectively brought an end to the institution within the British Empire.

And note here that slavery was a default institution found in all human societies; European, Asian, African, American, no matter. And it was the English that abolished it. Not the Coast Salish or Bantu peoples. Not the Jews or the Arabs or the Chinese. And for that matter, not the Greeks or the French or the Germans. Or even the Danes.

The English abolished slavery.

Everyone followed in our footsteps. Or in the case of the Arabs and of modern Africans themselves, they didn’t follow in our footsteps and slavery is still practiced in those regions today.

And I say this all with the grudging addition that the decision was inspired in no small part by Christian principles and long-standing Christian tradition; though we were hardly the only nation in the world to have been Christian at the time. Or Germanic for that matter!

And moreover, it came at monumental expense to us. And not simply in economic terms, but in pure flesh and blood human terms as well.

And from there, it was all downhill, with Canada’s Afro-American communities growing strong, stable, and self-sufficient, able to boast their own achievers and achievements, on through Confederation and into the 20th century. And this has left the authors of racial division having to stray off into immigration policy by this point  in order to build even the semblance of an argument for “Canadian racism” and all the word “racist” implies (or at least used to) to your average Anglo-Canadian of the 20th and 21st centuries.

While a 1911 declaration by Wilfred Laurier placed the immigration of any “negros” into the country on moratorium, this was largely because the Eastern Europeans, as a result of native climate, culture, and associated breeding, were deemed more fit to the task of developing the cold, windswept lands of the Canadian prairies. And of course within a decade a wave of “negro” immigration began to roll in from the Caribbeans all the same.

In fact, over the next 100 years to present, Canada has received over 800,000 black immigrants; with Jamaica and Haiti being its main sources, both overall and early on, and African countries coming more into vogue over the last few of decades.

Presently, less than 9% of the Afro-Canadian population is comprised of native Loyalists and other pioneering Afro-Americans of the late 18th and 19th centuries.

A full 91% of Canada’s Afro-Canadian population (1.2 million) is comprised of first or second generation immigrants; which will be the case for 50% of all Canadians by 2036 and, with the goal of hitting population 100 million by 2100, shall (ahem) “define” Canada by the end of the century.

Which brings us back around to the prevailing narrative that Canada is “racist to the core”.

Quite simply, while Canada is by no means perfect, as the prevailing political situation makes abundantly evident, the mere suggestion that it is racist, and specifically racist against black people, is entirely laughable and completely unfounded outside of isolated minutia and statistical games of smoke and mirrors. Not to diminish any tragedies any specific families or individuals might have actually suffer, or to turn a blind eye to honest statistics and/or specific incidences that should gives us all cause for concern, but the fact that horrible things happen in Canada, even for horrible reasons, is not evidence that Canada is thus a horrible country.

Over 800,000 black people did not chose to immigrate to Canada throughout its history to date because it is a horrible country that treats blacks poorly. Unless of course we are to assume that they were all incapable of making intelligent decisions? In fact, when compared to such black dominant, black policed, black ruled countries as Jamaica or Haiti, or even the “Rainbow Nation” itself (South Africa), a black person still enjoys more far more freedom from violence and oppression, along with a general higher standard of living and availability of opportunity here in Canada.

While I cannot find information on the homicide rate of Afro-Canadians in specific, it seems fair to assume that it is below the 4.22 (per 100,000) reported for First Nations women in 2017. Using that as our (admittedly questionable) number, this would still rank Canada as a statistically safer country to be black in than 33 out of the 54 odd countries that make up the vast continent of Africa. And of those 21 “safer” countries we find a motley assortment of predominantly Arab-Berber (ie. not black) North African countries, British ruled countries, happily small and homogeneous countries, and others that more than make up for their low homicide rates with state corruption and blatant violations of human rights.

Of the 18 African and Caribbean countries that Canada has actually drawn significant numbers (ie. 10,000+) of immigrants from, only four have lower homicide rates than the above number assumed for blacks in Canada, and they are themselves otherwise characterized by a dominant Arab-Berber demographic, and/or by wide-spread corruption and gross human rights violations. The other 14 range from somewhat more dangerous to much more dangerous, to the excessively more dangerous of Jamaica (murder rate 43.85 in 2018) and South Africa (murder rate 36.4 in 2018).

But speaking of Africa, remember those Loyalists that left British North America to found Freetown? Well, getting back to them and things we don’t hear too much about, we don’t hear too much about how they fared in their new African home. We hear virtually nothing for instance about how the black Loyalists were greeted upon arrival by lethal attacks from the indigenous (black) population of the region. But really, feel free to look into the history of Freetown yourself if you’re so inclined, and beyond citing its seemingly modest homicide rate of 1.71 in 2015, I’ll leave it at this quote from the site statecrime.org and its article Introducing State Crime in Sierra Leone,

…long before the conflict (civil war), Sierra Leone had a history of corrupt regimes, the violent suppression of civil society, and state sponsored theft of national resources… Since the end of the conflict Sierra Leone has been regularly highlighted for acute levels of poverty and high rates of corruption. With a high infant mortality rate, a low life expectancy, and overwhelming unemployment, only in 2009 was Sierra Leone elevated from the bottom of the Human Development Index… according to the World Bank governance indicators, unemployment is increasing, while control of corruption and government effectiveness have been steadily decreasing since 2003. This is despite the creation of an Anti-Corruption Committee (ACC) that is tasked with monitoring and stamping out corruption… in recent years there has been an alarming trend towards ethnic based violence.

So, while Canada cannot be said to be without racism, because no country can, a few things are clearly in view for the astute (and not so astute) observer to plainly see. First and foremost, that far from being racist against blacks, Canada is, by any holistic standard, one of the best places in the world for a black man, and especially a black woman, to live. And two, that if significant racism does exist in Canada, most poignantly of the state endorsed variety, it exists against both First Nations and Founding Nations; the former of whom are due to be dealt with separately as the unique case they are, and latter of whom are experiencing it straight across the West, within their own ethnic homelands, and in direct contravention of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. The UNRIP conveniently redefines the word indigenous to purposefully exclude ethnic Europeans in Europe. And this despite the fact that even the Anglo-Saxons for example have been in the British Isles for considerably longer than,say, the Thule-Inuit have been in the Canadian arctic, while the Normans have been in the British Isles themselves for considerably longer than the Bantu have been in South Africa. And finally, it is obvious that if racism is Canada’s biggest problem, then there are clearly exponentially bigger problems a country can have than “racism”.

Such as “whatever it is” that results in a homicide rate of 30+ for example or leads the world in child rape!

Not to in any way imply, as I trust is evident from my various blog entries here, any kind of blind faith in the state. Including the state of Canada. As a 21st century man of Anglo-Nordic heritage I don’t need to be told, by any one, about the dangers of an overweening and self-entitled state; much less by those marching in full goosestep to the beat of the prevailing doctrine of the (globalist) state. Our history as Anglo-Nordic peoples with the state goes way back. And even in the earliest of preChristian times a delicate balance of power existed between our proto-state/s and the folk; in which authority led more by respect born from example and less by command/power; in which the folk sat down at assembly armed; where, outside of the most extreme of crimes, the law was largely civil and fine-based; and where in the words of Tacitus, “good habits are (here) more effectual than good laws elsewhere“.

There is of course no wishing the “wolf of the state” out of existence. That genie has long since been let out of the bottle, and there is a world full of competing states, along with a host of wouldbe warlords, all mouths agape, that would promptly step in to fill any power vacuum left by its absence.  And indeed the wolf of the state is not without its objective virtues; even if they have generally tended to come via serendipity, required a heck of a lot of work and foresight, and violence and hardship, to beat into an moderately acceptable shape, and always carries with it a host of inherent dangers and evils that must constantly be watched and held to account lest it over-step its bounds and begin devouring its charges and contravening its very reason to exist.

We Anglo-Nordic folk are no strangers to historical injustices perpetuated against us by the state, and particularly by the elitist imperial/colonial/globalist state, from whose standpoint we Celto-Germanic peoples were among the first in a very long and very ethno-culturally diverse line/web of “savages” who “needed” to be civilized by any means necessary.

No, no.

I’m a pro-gun, small state, honest celebrant of true diversity kinda guy.  With an inherent, but nevertheless healthy mistrust of the state; so necessary to capitalize, in human currency, on the state’s functional value in the face of the greater world.

The abuse of power, the excessive use of force by the state on its citizens is everyones concern. The seriousness and ramifications of such affronts are done a grave disservice in the racialization of the issue, in which the BLM rhetoric regarding “standing as allies” against it involves, as requisite, that one condemn not only themselves, but their ancestors, and even their new born children as over-privileged, hate filled racists. And, well, that isn’t going to happen. And personally, that is the exact opposite direction that the current of my life has been carrying me, and the exact same direction the current of history has been carrying my folk (and yours) along in for almost 1400 years now.  And that kind of divisiveness from BLM and its ilk, in the face of such a serious and all-inclusive affront, is exactly what the wouldbe tyrant ordered.

If these types truly cared one wit about black lives, they wouldn’t be preaching to the converted about the value of life, muchless making mass generalizations based on skin tone. They would be carrying their message and directing their resources to where they are truly necessary; namely, the black populations of such places as Toronto, Chicago, and South Africa, as well as the snake-oil politicians, entertainment moguls, and social justice fanatics that promote thug-culture, attribute the characteristics of success and failure to skin colour, and sow the seeds of hatred and division both within racial groups and among we, the people.

“A king’s son… an uppity thrall… none should be so trusting as to trust in these.”

— the Havamal

Ancestral Journeys: Canadian Heathen

Over the past couple of decades or so I have increasingly stressed the importance of ancestral continuity and the, one might say blindingly self-evident reality that our folk did not cease to be with the conversion of the last king and the introduction of the diluting influence of “the Church”. Those first generation Christians are as much a part of our ancestry and ancestral legacy, indeed, as much a part of our identity, as the last generation among the parents or grandparents of us modern day Anglo-Nordic Heathens; ancestry and kin being a biological reality and not at all the social construct that many modern heathens, even on the Folkish side ironically enough, insist that it is.

Those historical Christians are our ancestors. They are not another tribe or folk. And their stories, both collectively and individually, are just as relevant to us, as modern folk of Anglo-Nordic belief, as those of the Icelandic sagas; which themselves are stories about the cultural “neighbours” of our personal ancestors and kin and as such offer “more branches than roots” and leave those aspects of the folk soul, those closest to us as individuals, dormant and un-nourished.

As a Canadian myself, the stories of the arrival of my ancestors, both personal and collective, and their deeds in the “New World” are every bit as important, from the standpoint of Anglo-Nordic belief in the New World, as the arrival of the Anglo-Saxons or Danes in Britannia over 1300 years ago, or, for the person of Icelandic ancestry, the arrival of the Norse in Iceland. And speaking as someone who long ago settled with the broad brushstrokes of ethno-cultural identity, as, at worst, where even the descendants of kings ultimately find themselves, I must admit that the knowledge of self gained via personal ancestry and lines of descent is palpable… stirring aspects of the soul one might not even known were there until actually quickened.

Such was my experience in the wake of Allhallowstide 2019 anyway; having scrolled by a Ancestry.ca advertisement offering free access to military records leading into Memorial Day and deciding to check it out to see if I might be able to find something on my long lost father. It’s nothing that I haven’t done before on the internet, engaging in casual, whimsical searches for information on my father. And so I was actually quite surprised when, low and behold, I actually found something this time around! And this led to touching base with my father’s first wife, and then his younger brother, and finally to connecting with my half-sister (from his third wife).

Moreover, it really opened up my knowledge of personal ancestry, and gave me a much better appreciation of my history as a Canadian

As for his patrilineal heritage, that is, the direct Martin line, it runs back to my great-great-great-great grandfather, James Martin, who was born in 1777, some two years into the American Revolutionary War, and seems to have grown up in the state of Delaware; which itself had barely signed off on its own declaration of independence, which had a strong and active Loyalist population, and which was largely under British control from 1777 to the end of the war in 1783. He arrived in the township of Thurlow, in the Mecklenberg District of the British held “Province of Quebec”, in 1790 when the township was receiving its first wave of “United Empire Loyalist” and other “Late Loyalist” pioneers; the distinction between the two being, those had had declared their loyalty to the Crown prior to the end of the American Revolutionary War in 1783, and those who demonstrated their loyalty… some time thereafter.

1783engl_0Exactly what prompted James’ removal from Delaware — or wherever else he might have hailed from — to Thurlow is anyone’s best guess. The division between Loyalists and Patriots, all more or less of the same stock, with much the same cultural values, sensibilities, idiosyncrasies, and expectations, is often over-stated by politicians and their historians and teachers, and while gross abuses certainly took place, here and there, and were perpetrated on both sides, no sooner had the war ended then those whimsical ideological “divisions” melted away and the old familial and cultural bonds reasserted themselves. Bonds that continue to exist even into the present day, and are the reason why, despite wars (1812) and raids (Fenian), the Canadian-American border has still managed to remain the worlds longest unprotected border; though present circumstances are, and quite rightly, challenging the nature of that border.

The best that can be said is that, whatever the motivating influence, James was likely among the “large number of Loyalists from the United States” that arrived in the township in 1789, among whom we find the names, Russell Pitman, Archibald McKenzie, Solomon Hazelton, __<illegible>__ McMichael, William Cook, Sedic Thrasher, Asa Turner, Stephen and Laurence Bagley, John Taylor, William Reed, and his sons, Samuel, William, John and Solomon, Richard Smith, John Longwell, Conelly, and Sherard.

Early records also show a John Martin as a soldier in Sir John Johnson 84th regiment, the men and families of which populated the early Mecklenburg settlements, and who might be the same as the John Martin that settled on concession 5, lot 1 of the Sydney township in 1790, which neighbours Thurlow to the west. It has been suggested that James might have been his son.

Whatever the case, among the previously mentioned names, two are of particular interest. The first, and most pertinently, Richard Smith, a United Empire Loyalist who was the father of James’ future wife, Mehitabel Smith (born 1790). And the second, more frivolously, being Sedic (or Zadoc, or simply “Old Man”) Thrasher. He appears alongside James as a co-witness in an early land deal record, but is most notable for the fact that he gave his name to Thrasher’s Corner, as the sight of a legendary encounter he had with two fully grown black bears, in which he reportedly killed both with a cudgel!

But to give a clear sense of the circumstances of those early pioneers, it should be stated that, prior to 1784, everything west of Montreal, and certainly the Mecklenburg District, was heavily wooded, undeveloped wilderness, sparsely occupied to various, ever-shifting degrees by the natives of the region, and frequented hitherto only by a relatively small number of French fur-traders operating out of Fort Cataraqui (future Kingston). Of the initial 40,000 Loyalists that evacuated the U.S. at the close of the war, most of whom went to the Maritimes, a mere 10,000 were settled along a tract of land that stretched a rough 850 kilometers from the St.Lawrence littoral west of Montreal over the northern shores of Lake Ontario and Lake Eerie to finally touch the banks of the Detroit River. There were no roads, with the original settlers reaching their destinations and otherwise traveling by bateaux, and even the most easterly of the townships, Kingston, was over 200 kms outside of the supply network.

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Effectively, the early Loyalists found themselves in the same position as their Colonial forefathers of some 150 years earlier; which brings to mind the words of Mr. D. W. Allison, a former MP for Lennox county, who in 1884 said,

These men were not inconsiderate youths; they were men, most of them of mature years, and some advanced in life, who won for themselves comfortable independence in a country south of us. At what they conceived to be the call of duty, they were ready to sacrifice everything that men commonly hold dear; resign the wealth they had accumulated, forfeit their prospects — their own and their children’s — for sake of their loyalty to the flag under which they had served, and under which many of them had fought and bled. That was not an ordinary act, and men who performed it were cast in no ordinary mould . Nowadays it is far too common to judge a man’s acts by the standard of mere material success. These men had something nobler and loftier before them.

While the Crown most certainly did its best to reciprocate their loyalty, and not simply in free grants of (untamed and largely inaccessible) land, but also in terms of essential tools and supplies, including a promise of three years of rations, these tools at times proved to be grossly inadequate, such as sending hatchets rather than proper tree-felling axes — not at all a small problem when you have land to clear and cabins to build! — while the promise of rations did not last much more than a year. This not only led to much suffering and starvation, but also to more than a few Loyalists packing it in and returning, at the earliest available opportunity, to the relative comfort and luxury of the United States.

While Kingston immediately had a mill up and running by 1784, it would not be until 1790, the year of James’ self-attested arrival in Thurlow, that Capt. Myers finally built the first grist mill in Thurlow; thus laying the first stone in the foundation of the future city of Belleville and sparing the local yeomen a grueling 40 mile overland trek to the mill at Napanee. The following year would see the first (official) Methodist saddle-bag ministers begin to ride their Kingston circuit, with the first Methodist meeting house in the Quinte Bay region, Adolphustown to be specific, being built by 1792, but it would still be a decade or more before the infrastructure of early 19th century civilization slowly began to catch up with the Loyalists. During this formidable time, many of the offspring of the Loyalists fell into illiteracy, as luxury was sacrificed for the demands of necessity, while church records from the early 19th century, show numerous individuals, and even entire families, coming forth to be baptized.

Nevertheless, by 1791, the Loyalists had gently brushed off the (largely) “benevolent dictatorships” of the military leaders that had guided them into their new lands and saw them safely through the hardships of the first years, in favour of men in whose position they themselves had some say, and asserted their English identity in the formation of Upper Canada (modern day Ontario), as a political entity quite distinct from the enduring and predominantly French nature of what was thence forth to be known as Lower Canada. By 1792, the District of Mecklenburg was renamed the Midland District, and the counties of Addington, Frontenac, Hastings, Lennox, Ontario, and Prince Edward were established within it.

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For all of that, by the outbreak of the War of 1812, no more than a dozen structures stood on the site of what would grow in to city of Belleville, and while a dirt road now ran the length from York to Kingston it is said to have been largely impassable for much of the year. The population of Belleville had yet to reach 150 people, the township of Thurlow as a whole could have been no greater than 1,500, while the entire Midland District had as yet to reach a population of 15,000. By way of contrast with Lower Canada, the population of the city of Montreal alone was at this time around 15,000.

The far off settlement of York, which would grow into the city of Toronto, had a population of less than 1,000 people in 1812, while Bytown, which would grow into the city of Ottawa had, maybe, half of that, with the total population of Upper Canada being no greater than 77,000. As for Kingston, its population stood at just over 2,000 and it had already resumed the importance as a strategic military position it had enjoyed under French occupation.

As for the War of 1812, James Martin’s name regularly appeared in the rolls for the Hastings County militia between the years of 1812 to 1814, but whatever state of readiness that news of the Battle of Crysler’s Farm or the capture and sacking of York, both in 1812, prompted in the men of Hastings county, the entire affair soon came to be regarded, and quite happily given their strong and enduring ties with their American brethren, as a non-starter that served no higher purpose than to keep them away from their homes, families, and work in the fields; thus resulting in a number of desertions, which were, nevertheless, met with due leniency on behalf of the Crown.

In all ways, James seems to have been a capable, contributing and respected yeoman of Thurlow, and his name has survived in five land transactions in the surviving records of this early epoch — most of which went missing with the outbreak of the Upper Canada Rebellion of 1837 and the desertion of a certain clerk who shall go unnamed — in the capacity of grantor, grantee, and witness, over the two year leading up to the birth of his son, my great-great-great grandfather, John Martin, in 1816.

The last appearance of James in the historical record comes in 1835, where he sells his property in Thurlow and is also named in the marriage record of John. However, by the time his wife, Mehitabel, made her own land petition in 1840 — her status as the immediate offspring a United Empire Loyalist entitled her to 200 acres — she was a widow.

Here it is interesting to note a couple of things. First, that Mehitabel made her 1840 land petition from the township of Tyendinaga (which neighbours Thurlow to the east), as this is where John’s eldest son, Thomas, was born in 1846; and in all likelihood also his daughter, Mehitabel (1847), and my own great-great grandfather, John Francis (1848). And second, that a James Martin is named as one of the pioneers of the township of Hungerford (which neighbours Tyendinaga to the north), which received its first wave of settlers, some 15 families, in 1826 to 1828. While there is no way of knowing if this was my James Martin, and with the scenario certainly begging us to wonder what the prospect of starting over — literally from the scratch of undeveloped, forested wilderness — might have looked like to a 57 year old man, it is nevertheless in Hungerford that we find John and each of his children no later than 1860.

And on a fairly decent plot of land at that!

Who knows, maybe James “chased” the frontier? Or at least enabled his son too? He certainly wouldn’t be the first of our kind to do so.

And indeed by the year 1860, civilization had come to at least the southern reaches of Hastings County and the Great Migration had all but ran its course. The first macadamized road, running from Napanee to Kingston was completed in 1839, to be followed by the Grand Trunk Railway in 1856, and in that time the population of Belleville swelled to 7,000, that of Kingston to 17,000, and all of Upper Canada to almost 1.4 million. Even Hungerford had grown from a population of 646 in 1839 to somewhere in the ballpark of 4,000 in 1860 and was now linked to Belleville via a gravel road.

As for James’ religion and ethnicity; while his son John was both baptized and then married as a Roman Catholic — on the same day, with the same witnesses and by the same priest — this conversion did not long outlive his wife, my great-great-great grandmother, Margaret Young; who died within a couple of years of my great-great grandfather’s birth. In the first census testimony, John’s religion is stated as Methodist, as per many of his fellow Loyalists in Mecklenburg. And as was the case with each of his descendants until my grandfather married a (French) Catholic woman and briefly brought Catholicism back into the family. I myself was baptized a Catholic as a baby. And yes, as a Anglo-Nordic Heathen, of course it shows! That said, we should not be too quick to jump to conclusions as to what their Christianity meant to them, or what it might look like to us if we could actually see it, growing as it did out of the culture of the 13 Colonies with its seers and astrologers and hexenmeisters — among which I can boast an ancestor or distant relative or two! — and a hearted willingness to concede that pagans, pagan Mohawks to be specific, could also be considered pious at the same time!

As for James’ ethnicity,  while future census testimony dances back and forth between English and Irish, DNA testing, on both my half-sister and myself, shows a greater presence of English and Danish than it does of “Irish” (Gaelic), and so this might represent some conflation of facts, equally true, each in their own measure, akin to the Anglo-Norman heritage of Galway or the Anglo-Scottish heritage of Ulster.

And that about ties it up for this entry, so let me leave off with a quote that very much captures the sense of what I have drawn from a knowledge of my own Loyalist past, and as someone who can also boast an ancestor who was in fact a captain in the Continental Army and spent four years in a Canadian “dungeon”,

what these men sought to prevent was a division which France sought to foster between the great portions of the English race. I believe the Loyalists, and the people of Canada who derive their inspiration from them, can best do justice to the spirit of their forefathers by doing what they can to bring together in a union all the English-speaking races in the world… if not under one Sovereign, at any rate in one alliance offensive and defensive...”

— Sir Richard Cartwright, 1884

 

Good day, eh!

 

 

Virtue and the Guiding Principle

“Tir (Glory, Tiw) is a profound token, it holds true with the noble,
it is ever on course, over the mists of Night,
it never switches.” — the Old English Rune Poem

The GUIDING PRINCIPLE of a system of morals…

We often get lost in the details of morality, of specific virtues, the 10 Commandments for example, or the Nine Noble Virtues, eg. honesty, courage, hospitality, love for all, etc., and fixate on them to the exclusion of the *guiding principle* of ethical systems.

This is in part due to the guiding principle of most post-Conversion ethical systems; which is *obedience* to the author/authority, be it a pretense to God, a prophet, the Church, or the secular State.

Contravene the stated virtue, and you are “a criminal”. You are “evil”. Because, in keeping with their guiding principle, disobedience to authority = bad in those ethical systems.

And of course, under such systems, everyone is inevitably guilty. Mankind is fallen. Some just hide or otherwise rationalize or justify it better than others.

The guiding principle for Anglo-Nordic belief, and most other ethno-cultural or heathen/pagan belief systems however, is the maintenance of the health and wholeness, ie. the holiness, of “the tribe”; in the pursuit of which the “toolbox of values” contains the full range of potential, ingenuity and resourcefulness as found in human nature. And some of these might usually be considered deplorable, and justifiably so, when divorced from the guiding principle and outside of the appropriate circumstances.

Take lying for example. Germanic society was a very forthright culture, in which honesty meant the difference, legally speaking, between a run-of-the-mill offense an individual could wash their hands of with payment of fine, and a serious offense to the entire community, for which the offender would be manhandled by the powers-that-be in a manner that might otherwise breed division between folk and state. eg. imprisonment, flogging, execution.

Hence why the pronouncements of such penalties was taboo and allowed to the priest-king alone; who himself had to consult the will of the Tivar via the casting of lots.

Nevertheless, we have plenty of examples in the Norse-Icelandic mythology of even the most solid and forthright of the gods engaging in or otherwise acting as facilitators of acts of deceit.

“How can this be? Hypocrites!”, one might cry.

Indeed, many have cried exactly that regarding, most poignantly, Tiw (Tyr) and his role in the binding of the Fenwulf. Of course, they are estimating the act within the context of a foreign paradigm, in which the guiding principle is one of obedience. Hence why, within the native paradigm, Tiw so easily silences Loki on the matter in the Lokasenna, and Loki is left fumbling for some other matter with which to shame the God.

Even Loki understood what many of his would-be Heathen fans in the modern world don’t; Namely, the guiding principle of Anglo-Nordic belief, ie. the maintenance of the health and wholiness of the tribe.

To illustrate this in more homely terms; let us say that you, a parent with young children, heard of lunatics moving through your neighbourhood kicking in doors and kidnapping or murdering children. So, you’ve hidden your children safely away somewhere in your home. Hopefully you’ve also armed yourself and set up “inconveniences” for unwanted interlopers. But now the lunatics kick in your door, and demand to know where your children are. Do you tell them? Because lying is a sin? And that would be wrong? Do you refrain from killing them? Because man-killing is a sin? And that would be wrong? And if you imagine that such things would be wrong in those circumstances, do you honestly imagine that you are a good human being? A good parent? As you stand, glowing with self-righteousness, with your children dead at your feet, or spirited away into a life of suffering, abuse and misery? And you thinking, “well, at least I am still good with God/Church/State!”

Here we see how important the *guiding principle* is in determining good from evil, moral from immoral, wisdom from obedience, integrity from hypocrisy. How important in the application of the capabilities of our humanity.

And the guiding principle applies to one’s actions be they within the tribe or in relation to those outside of the tribe, ie. how shall my actions effect the well-being of my tribe?

Finally, lest we forget how the tale of the Fenwulf’s binding ends,

Then all the gods rejoiced, except Týr: he paid with his hand.”

Ginnungagap

“Of old was the age when Ymir lived; neither sea nor cool waves nor sand there were; earth had not been, nor heaven above, only a mysterious abyss, and grass nowhere.”

— Voluspa, Poetic Edda

Ginnungagap, the oxymoronic “pregnant void” of Eddic Creation…

It is only called, as a proper name, Ginnungagap in the Prose Edda, while in the Voluspa the void is simply described as a gap that is ginnunga.

Most linguists trace it to a root (ginn-) meaning “vast, wide” and so can be seen to share a common root (P.I.E. *ghieh) with the Greek word chaos; as can the term gap itself. Thus rendering the seemingly redundant “gaping gap”, or “yawning gap” as it is more usually rendered.

In this we see a likeness to the seemingly and similarly redundant Sanskrit phrase “gahanaṃ gabhīram”, where gahan carries a range of meaning that includes “abyss, depths, impenetrable, inscrutable” and gabriha carries a range of meaning that includes “deep, depth, impervious, profound, mysterious”, and like Ginnungagap can yield something as equally literal and uninspired as “the deep depths”.

Of course, with the Sanskrit the connotations of “profound, mysterious” are immediately at our disposal, and made evident via the greater body of the Vedic hymn in which it appears, ie. the context in which the phrase appears. In the Old Icelandic ginn- such connotations seem to come only indirectly, in a much broader mytho-linguistic context, via compounds with the words holy (ginn-heilog; very holy) or regin (ginn-regin; great divine judges) or wih (Ginnunga-ve; sacred space of the ginnungar = ginnregin).

We do however find something of this sense of “inscrutable mystery” in the Old Icelandic word ginna meaning “to fool, to dupe, to intoxicate”, as we see in Gylfaginning. In this context we see it take on connotations of “surreal, dreamlike, mystical play on the senses”; which certainly speaks toward the primal nature of preExistence, which, in it’s vast and all-encompassing formlessness, is like an ink-blot in which any man who bothers to look can perceive whatever he might. Meaning, anything and everything. And different things at different times … reminding us of something that we might hear about regarding quantum physics and the effects of the observer on quantum reality, or the nature of light (ie. particles or waves).

Hence, to fool.

In Ovid’s work, Chaos is imbued with similar connotations,

“Before the ocean and the earth appeared — before the skies had overspread them all — the face of nature in a vast expanse was naught but Chaos uniformly waste. It was a rude and undeveloped mass, that nothing made except a ponderous weight; and all discordant elements confused, were there congested in a shapeless heap.

And so, whatever the literal meaning of Ginnungagap, more inspired renderings such as “Gap of All-potential” or “Gap of Mystical Bewilderment” or “Gap of Mystery” are seemingly obvious inferences that can be made not only comparatively or within the broad mytho-linguistic context of the North Germanics, but also within the context of the Voluspa itself; where everything arises out of the nothingness of the gap.

Ginnungagap … the point in retrospection at which the senses fail and become confused.

“Then was neither non-existent nor existent: there was no realm of air, no heaven beyond it. What was sheltered within? And where? Under whose protection? Was it the primal waters, an ineffable abyss of mystery?”

— RigVeda, Hymn of Creation

 

Thoughts and Musings on Halloween

halloween

 

Prior to the late 4th century, Christians celebrated their dead martyrs as local traditions at a variety of different times of year. By the 5th century AD the Church was at work trying to unifying the celebration of martyrs and saints into a single holiday. The date for this celebration tended to fall in the month of May until, in the early 7th century AD, Pope Boniface the IV nailed it down and established the “dedication Sanctae Mariae ad Martyres” on May 13th.

This is the Latin origin of what is known among today’s NW Europeans as Hallowtide, and includes “All Saints Eve” (Halloween), “All Saints Day” (All Hallows), and “All Souls Day”.

How then is it possible that this Catholic “feast of Martyrs, Saints and the dead” came to be celebrated beginning on the eve of October 31st and on to November 2nd?

Is it really just a syncretism with the Celtic Samhein; the Celts themselves having been conquered and Romanized by the Roman’s in the 1st century BC and then Christianized as an act of political correctness in the 4th century?

Well, maybe.

But our first clue on how that came to pass is to be found in the language itself. Halloween is of course a word firmly rooted in Old English, which itself is firmly rooted in West Germanic, and from there Proto-Germanic.

It is neither Latin nor Celtic in origin.

Similarly we have the flow of time, in which Hallow Eve pre-cedes All Hallows Day; a peculiarity (ie. reckoning the day from sundown to sundown rather than sunrise to sunrise) which is witnessed in Germanic time reckoning from as early as Tacitus. This Germanic sense of the flow of the day is likewise the reason that Christmas Eve pre-cedes Christmas Day.

The historical time frame of the move of the Catholic feast from mid-May (7th century) to early November (8th to 9th century) is also telling, as it was precisely within this time frame that the Anglo-Saxons and their continental Germanic brethren were converted to Catholicism.

Now, in a letter dated AD 601 and addressed to Mellitus, his missionary at work among the Anglo-Saxons, Pope Gregory I mentions a custom among our ancestors in which “a large number of cattle are slaughtered”, and that this heathen rite should be made over into “a feast in honour of the saints”.

Meanwhile, according to the Anglo-Catholic historian Bede, Blotmonath or Blood month, was a time in which “the cattle which were to be slaughtered were consecrated to the gods.” The Anglo-Saxon Blotmonath more-or-less corresponds to the modern month of (the Latin-rooted) November, and the slaughter that took place in this month was substantial and represented the annual thinning of the herd; required so that resources would be sufficient to see the herd through winter.

In reflecting on the matter of what the Hallowtide meant within the native beliefs of our English ancestors, I don’t think that we should become too preoccupied with the consecration of “the cattle that were to be slaughtered”. Such things would have occurred in regards to any sacrifice/feast, save here, the number of cattle to be slaughtered was quite substantial in comparison, and probably set the stage for the sacred rites of the tide, as we see in the reference to the fall-tide disablot in Egil’s saga, “there was the best banquet and much drink within the hall”.

Basically, the over-abundance of meat, not to mention the abundance of food in general, ie. from the recent harvest, set the conditions for a particularly abundant feast.

But what was this feast devoted to? Afterall, it was not just “a feast”, but a sacral feast in which the animals were consecrated.

To the extent that the Viking Age North Germanic tradition of Snorri Sturlusson is indicative of anything pan-Germanic, the winter nights sacrifice was for good luck in the coming year. Other bits and piece from the lore — which might coincide and devolve more precisely with harvest than with the herd-thinning — include the disablot, the alfablot, Freyblot, and of course the widespread custom of the “Last Sheaf”. Each of these have their association, be it strong or weak, with the dead and/or the exceptional dead, while the Last Sheaf customs were generally associated, strongly or weakly, with Woden, particularly in his guise as the Wild Hunter.

As the Catholic associations of the tide are strongly focused on the veneration of saints and martyrs, and as the later, but inherently related (to West Germanic) North Germanic traditions are themselves strongly focused on the veneration of the dead — a general phenom. well represented in earlier law codes and similar legal treatments of “heathen practices” on the Continent — it is fair to suggest that the native Anglo-Saxon “Hallowtide” may likewise have involved veneration of the dead. And of course, that keeping up relations with the dead was of vital importance to the good fortunes of the community.

“42. In order that no new saints may be venerated or invoked, do not allow their monuments to be erected along the roads, etc.”

— Charlemagne, Synod of Frankfurt (AD 8th century)

“1. sacrilege at the tombs of the dead… 2. sacrilegious funeral songs made to the dead… 9. sacrifices made to some saint… 25. Those who carve images for dead persons whom they say are saints.”

— Index of Superstitious and Heathen Practices (AD 8th century)

Reflecting on the raw nature of the tide itself, we see a gradual retreat of of the spirit of life from nature. The fields lay bare, the trees have begun to lose their leaves, and nature itself has begun to cool and discolour. To top it all off, the blood of life, quite literally, flows freely and saturates to land.

The spirit of death has come into power; itself betokening a “thinning of the veil” between the world of man and those less seen “otherworlds” that “surround” it.

This “thinning of the veil” allows the spirits that occupy those “otherworlds” to wander into our own; attracted to the substance of life, the blood, that has come to saturate the earth. And while some of these spirits might not represent anything more mysterious or malevolent than “late grandfather Harold”, many are the otherworlds and varied are their denizens. Others would be the starving souls of the evil or otherwise neglected dead, or things more primal that had never existed in association with man, eg. thursar, all particularly attracted, like hungry predators, to the life-force inherent in the blood of the slaughter.

Such beliefs would thus have made the fall slaughter something of a dangerous thing, from whence, we might speculate, the season took on it’s more “horrific” associations, ie. above and beyond the Christian association of anything non-Christian or heretical with “horror”.

This horror element would subside and morph with the first snowfall, ie. the washing away of the blood of the slaughter, and the promise of the Yuletide.

The Law of Ymir

leowolf

 

“Not at all do we consider him to be a god. He was evil and all his descendants. We call them rime-thursar.” — Snorri Sturlusson, Prose Edda

By the indigenous worldview of our ancestors the present is an accumulation of interwoven *layers* that set the context of our lives, both individually and collectively (in ever expanding circles of relation out to all of humanity).

We see this in the evolution of the primal realm of Niflheim, formed by the layers upon layers of rime and frost that built up around the primal spring called Hvergelmir (Seething Cauldron), and we see this in the actions of the Great Mothers at the Divine Counsel of the Tivar in Upper-Heaven, as they “lay the layers/laws” (of Divine Judgement) into the holy spring of Wyrd. And of course we see it in the folklore and the appearance of the Little Mothers at a child’s birth who would set the baby’s “orlogR”, the “primal layer/law” or “basic context” of their life … which would of course be deeply influenced — wherever that stops short of “micro-managed” — by the “primal law” of the family, tribe, culture, etc. that they sprung from.

Layers upon (interwoven) layers. Laws upon laws. A veritable three dimensional tapestry.

This is a useful perceptual tool in approaching the “Creation myth” of the Germanic peoples as embodied in the Norse-Icelandic Eddas; that each event along the path to Creation (and forward) represents successive “laws” or “precedents” that set the context of human existence on a fundamental level.

And THE primal law of all existence is, arguably (ie. Ginnungagap), the “Law of Ymir” whose “offspring” it is said are all brutish and hostile, the very forces of hardship and adversity as inherent in nature and natural existence; to which all things, great and small, are and ever shall be subject too (to one degree of another).

There is no escape from this primal law. It is set. Indeed, if one can rely on nothing else in life, it is an undeniable fact that one can always count on hardship and adversity. It shall always be there to hurt you, to make you suffer, to kill you, and then to casually step over your broken form utterly heedless that you were ever even there to begin with.

And this is how it should be; a fact that one can most certainly argue against, in all futility, but which remains a fact nevertheless. And it remains a fact that has and shall prove itself, over and over and over again, and never show itself off as anything other than the cold, hard truth.

No malicious intentions necessary.

There are of course mitigating factors, mythologically speaking, in the form of the All-Nourisher, Audhumbla, the Tivar and of course in the the foundation of the “innangeard” or “in-group/community”. But that combination of adversity (Ymir) and nurture (Audhumbla) is what gave birth to the first of the gods, to glory, and the process of the cultivation of resilience, strength and excellence, of divinity, in which adversity is a key component. And in which adversity remains ever-present, regardless of one’s degree of strength, fortitude, and excellence.

The “Law of Ymir” remains ever in place.

Adversity is a given.

And the best life is had by the those who accept that, who look upon it as a challenge; by those who have an inkling of exactly how adverse life could potentially be without the buffer of the innangeard established by the gods and maintained by our ancestors since time immemorial. And this keen awareness also makes such people some of the most thankful.

“the hardships of the freedman mark the freedom of his condition.” — Tacitus, Germania

 

One Ring to Rule them All

Politics. It’s a funny thing. Funny-strange.

I spent most of my life, not unlike most of my peers who grew up in the 70s and 80s, without affording politics much more than a sideways glance. Unlike most of my peers, I was much more concerned with my native culturo-spiritual heritage as a man of Anglo-Frankish (paternal) and German (maternal) ancestry; which is to say that I was interested in my preChristian heathen heritage. And that of course is as much as to say my ethnic heritage; the word heathen (country-dweller) being a gloss of the Latin paganus (rustic, villager; from pagus meaning “rural locality”) which itself is a gloss of the Greek ethnos from whence we get the Modern English word ethnic; which itself is a much deeper and complex concept than “race” that certainly encompasses the notion of “race” but which is neither limited to nor dominated by it.

As a Germanic Heathen, my values, my identity does not “descend from on high”. It rises up out of the soil beneath my feet, up from the halls of my ancestors and through their generations to me, and stretches up and out as far as my reach can grasp and my environment will allow. That is my domain. And the well-being of my domain, of my tribe, is my politics.

My tribe first.

This is not to suggest that I don’t care about the well-being of other tribes, or fail to realize how successful alliances with outsiders can benefit my tribe, only that I know where my priority-one responsibilities and obligations lie. No one enters into a deal that is not beneficial to them; for all that we might hope that the benefit was mutual. This is of course no different than someone saying that they put their children first, even before my children, to which I would respond, not with self-righteous contempt and holier-than-thou indignation, but rather with a pat on the back and a warm assurance that this is the foundation of being a good parent. You are behaving as you should, as one should expect of you as a parent. Nothing more, nothing less. And the same principle applies no matter the context, big or small. What is true for the parent is true for the family head is true for the tribal head is true for the head of state.

Among wiser folk, folk more in-tune with nature and human nature, folk less ideologically obsessed, such a statement as “I put my child first!” might well come off as uncouth, a statement of the obvious, and as such might be perceived as carrying certain implications that might be frowned upon, depending of course. But we Euro-descended people of the 21st century are not such folk.

No. We 21st century Euro-descended folk can, as a whole, be summed up in the prophecy of Queen Basina, the mother of King Clovis of Frankland, when she foretold that her children would be like noble lions, but her grandchildren like savage bears and wolves, while her great-grandchildren would be like dogs and small squabbling animals that would devour each other. It might have taken a little longer for the dynamic to infect the West as a whole as opposed to just the once sacral Merovingian line of France, but infect us it certainly has. We are like a bunch of stuffy old obsessive-compulsive hyper-critical grannies with nothing better to do than constantly peck and nit-pick, remembering the past only insofar as it can be used to fuel our self-righteous indignation, but utterly senile and entirely oblivious to its many virtues … the very things that have afforded the “grannies”, the weak, the luxury of their continued existence, as well as the rights and freedoms to engage in their incessant, hyperbolic whining and protest to begin with.

One has but to speak towards the historical virtues of the “white male”, or express a concern over our demographic predicament, or cite a fact that runs contrary to the “victim narrative” — or even simply exist as a “white male” — to bringing the wrath of, not only the politically correct mob, but the politically correct establishment down upon you.

Nope. In the U.S. a Christian bakery can’t refuse the business of making a cake for a gay wedding. Meanwhile here in Canada, if you were looking to become a member of our Feds, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, you might imagine that you were in luck as they have plenty of vacancies and are having difficulty filling those positions. Not so lucky however, if you are a white male. Sorry. That quota has been filled. Indeed, in an effort to fill their vacancies with non-white males, the R.C.M.P. have since done away with … wait for it … the requirement of Canadian citizenship!  And meanwhile any hint of Euro-descended peoples, and particularly straight white males, coming together to in any way discuss and/or represent their concerns and interests is denounced as “sexist” or “homophobic” or “racist” or “anti-immigration” and set upon by the mob as certainly as Pavlov’s dog begins to salivate at the sound of a bell. No actual “food” required. No actual hate required. And just never mind the fact that so-called “minority groups” are both encouraged and celebrated for doing the very things that Euro-descended folk are demonized for.

Indeed, just the other day there was what is believed to have been a “terrorist attack” carried out in Edmonton, Alberta by a Somalian refugee. In the wake of the attack our Prime Minister shared an image, presented within the context of the attack, that denounced white supremacy.

whitesupremacy

Inappropriate one might think. Definitely lacking in couth. But it comes as no great shock. We have seen similar responses as this numerous times at this point from other (or the same) politicians in the Western world; responding to Islamic terrorist attacks by lecturing us about the evils of “Islamophobia” … or even just deciding to “throw it out there” to the world that we the (Euro-descended) people (of Canada) are a bunch of low-life “racists”.

And no one questions it. Like Pavlov’s dog they simply begin to “salivate” when someone “rings the bell” of white racism; all too happy to hop on board and goose-step to the tune of the state … all the while imagining themselves to be that courageous soul with his arms crossed, indignantly, while amidst a crowd of (actual) Nazis eagerly throwing up the Roman salute … in the name of Germania.

Political correctness is after all adherence to the doctrine of the state by any other name. It is explicitly totalitarian, implicitly Leftist, and as such runs against the grain of our fundamental ethno-cultural disposition as Germanic people; as evidenced in our centuries long struggle and ultimate(?) victory against the theocratic Abrahamic (Christian) state that resulted in the separation of Church and State and the freedom of belief. But in fact, while the state my have tossed out the proverbial baby, it decided to hang on to the bath-water and carry forward the worst elements of the Christian theocracy; namely its negative evaluation of human nature and its over-bearing, “born again” paternalistic presumption to hold the one and only true path to salvation … which you are “literally Hitler” if you don’t give your mind, your soul and your undying devotion over to.

And hey! Don’t forget to ante up your “Peter’s Pence” while you are at it. Or else.

The Germanic ideal of government is of course best summed up in Thomas Jefferson’s famous quote, “That government is best which governs the least“; which shows off our ancient love of liberty, locality, and self-determination, our trust, our confidence and our sense of security in relation to our neighbour, our fellow man, that hearkens back as far as Tacitus in the historical record. In his work Germania, Tacitus expresses it in so many words here,

“Their freedom has this disadvantage, that they do not meet simultaneously or as they are bidden, but two or three days are wasted in the delays of assembling. When the multitude think proper, they sit down armed. Silence is proclaimed by the priests, who have on these occasions the right of keeping order. Then the king or the chief, according to age, birth, distinction in war, or eloquence, is heard, more because he has influence to persuade than because he has power to command.”

He hits upon it again in relation between lord and thrall here,

slaves are not employed after our manner with distinct domestic duties assigned to them, but each one has the management of a house and home of his own. The master requires from the slave a certain quantity of grain, of cattle, and of clothing, as he would from a tenant, and this is the limit of subjection. All other household functions are discharged by the wife and children. To strike a slave or to punish him with bonds or with hard labour is a rare occurrence.

 

What has become known as the “roof-tree law” in modern Germanicism is echoed centuries later in such Havamal stanzas as,

 

One’s own home is best, though it be small.
To each, home is hall.
Though he owns but two goats,
and a thatched roof, it is better than begging

One might say it is further demonstrated among the Viking Age Norse in the founding of Iceland, Greenland, and the Vinland colony! But getting back to Tacitus, he also speaks towards the heart and soul of what made the Germanic concept of self–rule, the ideal of small government, actually work,

good habits are here more effectual than good laws elsewhere.

This observation is noted within the context of marriage and fidelity among the tribes of Germania, but speaks toward a more pervasive concept that the Anglo-Saxons called thew; meaning “customs, habits” of a community, as expressed, not in some lofty doctrine, but in rather in the habits of life and social interaction of the people that make up that community. Today we might call it “social fabric”, though “social muscle” would be more appropriate. It is organic, strong yet fibrous and flexible, and it is inherently functional. Thew is what enabled our ancestors, top to bottom, to feed and shelter and cloth themselves, and each other, to extend charity to the needy, to operate under a system of law that was largely civil in nature and absolutely dependent on the parties involved, and their local community, to determine and make amends for any wrongdoing. Good habits. Common values, common vision, common history, common sense, up out of the soil, emanating from the halls of the ancestors and down through the generations to them. And it is primarily in the area of thew that a society that has become co-dependent upon the state most suffers.

And yet in all of this talk that has emerged since the birth of Classical Liberalism about the oppressive nature of the state, and rabidly advanced by the mob of minorities that make up the “politically correct” crowd with the ever paternal “white knights” leading the charge, where is the call for smaller government? Where is the call for limiting the power of the very instrument of oppression that they are all so sore about? Rather, as a result of the very “politics of fear and division” they so often speak out against, they work to feed the wolf, to feed the state, in a frantic effort to secure a hold, Gollum-like, of “the one ring to rule them all”; granting the state ever more power to limit the freedoms and rights of their countrymen, and utterly oblivious to the ever-changing nature of the political landscape.

Here is a word to the wise for you … when you say that all politicians are liars and cheats, that’s a good indication that you mean all of them, rather than all of them except for this one here, who is offering me free stuff and catering to my sympathies, and who is clearly remarkably different than the rest … until I am betrayed by my own selfish naivety … yet again. Rinse and repeat.

Now, it’s one thing to see European peoples in general, or even NW European peoples in specific pander to this political correct nonsense, this faux shaming that generally amounts to so much hyperbolic hot air. But it’s another thing to see people who claim to be “Germanic Heathens” do it. And it is an absolute joke to see one of these “middle grounders” denounce “fanaticism on all sides, be it Far Left or Far Right”, when in fact, for one, both Nazis and Commies are on the Left, both equally big government totalitarian regardless of the presence or lack of an ethnic component, and for another, they set to salivating at the chime of “racists” every bit as quickly, as furiously, and as unthinkingly as the rest of Pavlov’s dogs.

Does it matter to them that the Sons of Odin for example, and most pertinently their Canadian contingent, have never been charged let alone implicated in a hate crime? Does it matter that they regularly spend their free time making sure drunk women make it safely home after a night of partying, do garbage clean-ups in their local neighbourhoods, and shovel their less-than-able neighbour’s sidewalks for them? No. Of course it doesn’t matter. It only matters that their Finnish founder had a background as some kind of “white supremacist” as though, true or otherwise, he is representative of the whole. Does it matter that such outfits as the Sons of Odin or the Proud Boys can boast members, prominent members, married to non-white wives with mixed offspring? No. All that matters is that they have a positive evaluation of Western culture and Western history, which of course somehow means that they are “Far Right” and “white supremacist”. Heck, does it even matter that some of the people being branded with the stigma of “white supremacists” are … wait for it … not even white??? Nor male, nor straight, nor even of clear gender in some cases? No. All that matters to the mob is the doctrine (and udder) of the state and the threat such people pose to the prevailing narrative and the status quo.

What is most confounding about these “Germanic Heathens” that engage in this game of smoke and mirrors, is that they often cite (unfounded) accusations of racism leveled against themselves, and a desire to get out from under them, as their motivation and justification for opposing “racists”; oblivious to the fact that, as such, they are complicit in the slander by, at the very least, validating it with their agreement.  And also to the fact that, no matter how many times they address the question of racism to these slanderers, even going so far as to pull out their own token non-whites to prove the matter, the same slanderers can and do go on doing exactly what they do … slandering them with allegations of racism. This holds true for Euro-descended people as a whole of course.

Does anyone ever stop to consider where some of these so-called “racists” are coming from? Ever attempt to actually “build bridges not walls”? Do they ever stop, if they’ve accumulated enough years to do so, and think, “hey, in the 70s and 80s we were strongly encouraged by the political narrative of the time to stop having babies because doing so would result in a global apocalypse, only to be told in the 90s that because we didn’t have enough babies, we had to accept perpetual mass immigration as the only solution. Now, something isn’t right here.”?

No? Well, why not???

If nothing else, we were lied to … taken in by the good ol’ “bait and switch”. A person of honour and conscience could not simply over-look that or let it pass unchallenged, to say nothing of try to silence any such observations with socially malicious gossip. Our fertility rate as Euro-Canadians sits at .5 points below the abysmal national average of 1.6 (kids per couple) at an even more abysmal 1.1 (kids per couple). You don’t need to have a degree in advanced calculus to do the math on the issue.

Or maybe we weren’t lied to. Maybe Canada really did need to cap its population growth? After all, from its foundation in the mid-60s to its abolishment in the early 90s, the Science Council of Canada consistently advised a population cap in order to ensure sustainability and environmental health. And of course it was in the early 90s, paralleling the abolishment of the S.C.o.C., that Canada began its modern practice of perpetual mass immigration and we began taking in an average of 250,000 immigrants per year, every year, with the goal of reaching 100 million by the end of the century; a farcical and pretentious goal that flies in the face of simple logic, common sense, and every study done on immigration to date, and relies on some obscure metric that suggests a “sweet spot” of population density that, if reached, shall magically “unlock the bounty of the nation”, but which can’t actually be demonstrated, and only serves to be undermined by using existing countries that do sit in the hypothetical “sweet spot” of  population density as examples. They might as well be prophesying from the entrails of goats or predicting the Second Coming for all that they can validate their claims.

Yes, gentle reader, for those of you unfamiliar with the Scientific Method, a hypothesis is not at all the same thing as a conclusion. And even a conclusion requires verification.

This notion of a population cap was in more recent times echoed by the West Coast’s very own environmentalist golden boy, David Suzuki, who said in criticism of the Harper government and its immigration policy that, and I quote, “Canada is full“. And for this Suzuki was lambasted as “anti-immigration” by the Conservatives and such media personalities as the roundly loathed Ezra Levant. Moreover, Suzuki was left so shaken by the Mjolnir-like bludgeoning power of the accusation, which, again, actually amounts to a lot of hot air, that he hasn’t said a peep about immigration since.

In fact, those very Conservatives that slammed Suzuki as “anti-immigration” were themselves coloured anti-immigration by their critics, and despite taking in a modern record of 285,000 immigrants in a single year. Likewise, back in the 90s, Preston Manning of the old Reform Party was slammed as “anti-immigration” for suggesting that we pull our intake down to 150,000 per year, despite being able to boast 150,000 articles of evidence as to why he was anything but anti-immigration … unless of course one meant that he was anti-immigration like antifa is “anti-fascist”, ie. not at all.

I mention this to demonstrate what a farce the accusation of “anti-immigration” is. And in this it is no different than the accusation of “racism”. Indeed, both have a very direct relation to one another, serve the same end, utilize the same hyperbolic tactics and rely on the same knee-jerk reactions, and as such are more-or-less synonymous. It would also seem to illustrate the essential contradiction that exists between the Leftist platforms of environmentalism vs. immigration and economy. And there is every reason to question the received doctrine of  “immigrants and economy” as well.

Despite the oft repeated mantra that “Canada needs immigrants”, not a single study has been produced that  lends credence to the notion. According to the study undertaken by the Fraser Institute immigrants represent a net burden on the Canadian tax-payer of some $23 billion dollars per year. A similar study conducted by the Simon Fraser University, often used in (pathetic) retort to the former, concluded that immigrants “only” cost Canadian tax-payers $2 billion dollars per year, ie. but cost us nevertheless. Meanwhile the study that, until recently, sat upon the Government of Canada website,  “the Economic and social objectives of immigration: The evidence that informs immigration levels and education mix”, concluded that, economically speaking,  immigration has only negligible effect, either way, upon the country; but also drew firm conclusions that, on the one hand, immigration certainly improves the economic outcome of the immigrant, and on the other, that immigration certainly undermines the social cohesion of the host nation.

That is to say, it undermines thew … the ability of people to get along, work together, and feel at home in their surroundings. 

These questions regarding fertility rate, demographics, and immigration, the integrity and power of the state,  are real concerns based on actual data whose discussion should and shall be insisted upon by a civic-minded population possessed of right goodwill. And they are not at all problems exclusive to “straight white Christian males”. They impact the lives of women and homosexuals no less, and have already had a significant impact on the state of First Nations people within Canada … who have found their voice of 1.4 million strong eating the dust of “First Generations”, of which some 6+ million (offspring not included) have been brought into Canada over the past 25 years. And it is “predicted” that future population increase, and they are planning a lot of it, shall come predominantly from immigration (as opposed to natural increase), which should raise an alarm with any legitimate citizen of Canada.

Note that none of this is observed with any particular prejudice or malice towards the non-European populations of the world, or those existing here. There are certainly some groups, such as Islam, that I think we should certainly be more careful as setting up as our “preferred source of immigrants”, but I understand the motives of immigrants for wanting to come to Western countries, to come to Canada. Contrary to the self-loathing collectively apparent in those so eager to hurl and accept the slurs of “racist” and “anti-immigration”, we lovers of the West understand the motivations of immigrants only all to well. Namely, they know as well as we do that “the West is the best”. It’s not at all perfect, and still has some major hurdles to overcome, as this blog entry should make abundantly clear, but it’s the best thing that the world has going and, more importantly, it has evolved a process that speaks towards our collective humility, self-awareness and self-criticism, that is requisite to any hope of growth and progress. And it’s possession is why the West is the best. Moreover, while I am happy to judge groups collectively, I am also wise enough to judge individuals based upon their own merit as individuals and have in my life grown up alongside wave after wave of immigrants that had washed up on the shores of Canada. And contrary to the prevailing narrative, we all got along pretty good back in the 70s and 80s, governed on the play-ground and ballfield largely by local thew, before the state and its political correctness at last stepped in to do what it does … ruin an otherwise good thing for everyone, the young not least among them.

Finally, these questions, which amount to nothing less conscientious than questioning the state, are also a concern for anyone who has a true appreciation for ethno-cultural diversity. History has shown us time and again that in any collision or coming together of cultures within a given area that one shall dominate and subsume the other/s. It is a simple logistic reality. Whose language shall be the language of the state? Or shall the state have 12+ official languages? Whose values will it embody, who will define its social mores, what shall be it’s laws and system of laws? And what will become of its history? This is not to suggest that such “cultural conglomerations” cannot work. It is only to point out that the end product isn’t a wonderful garden of either baseline human or ethno-cultural diversity; which itself is not actually an ideal that needs achieving, but rather is the default position of human life on Earth, that only needs observing, but which has never been in greater danger than it is today.

You see, the political paradigm is no longer one of Left vs. Right, of Liberal vs. Conservative. No. The (re-)emerging paradigm is a very old one at this point. It is one of the diverse peoples and cultures and nations of the Earth vs. a pretensious and self-serving global elite and their collection of useful idiots. And its modern manifestation has been working hard, both at home and abroad, to destabilize cultures both foreign and domestic, with the end goal of establishing a global monoculture overseen by a global state … in which we mere “peasants” have all been reduced to interchangeable parts for their own convenience. And the rhetoric of these globalists and their stooges, most poignantly on the Left, betrays itself. In one instant they are demanding a respect for and celebration of diversity, and in the next they are insisting that we are all really just the same, with nary a difference between us; black or white, male or female, gay or straight, and indeed, ultimately, you or me.

You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile.

And so as this long rambling entry of mine draws to a close, my thoughts begin to wander back to its beginnings and the events that have transpired over the last few days. Particularly, this time around, to the events that rocked Las Vegas and left nearly 60 concert-goers dead. In its wake I have heard the bewildered questions, “how could this have happened??? What possibly could have been his motive??? What could have triggered him???”. And I am reminded of the fact that second generation Muslim immigrants tend to be far more prone to radicalization than their immigrant parents. How is that, we wonder? After all, unlike their parents, they themselves grew up here in the West, did they not? How could they fail so utterly to integrate with Western culture? But then you take a look at the cultural landscape they have apparently been in the process of integrating with since they were born. Where did this hatred of the West come from? Indeed, where did this disdain for humanity itself come from?

Gee. I wonder.

J.R.R._Tolkien_-_Ring_verse

 

 

 

 

In Their Ancient Hymns: the Ethnogenesis of the Germanic Peoples

In their ancient hymns (which amongst them are the only sort of records and history) they celebrate Tuisto, a god sprung from the earth, and Mannus his son, as the fathers and founders of their people. To Mannus they asign three sons, after whose names so many people are called; the Ingaevones, dwelling by the seashore; the Herminones, in the interior; and all the rest, Istaevones. Some, borrowing the liscence that pertains to antiquity, maintain that the god had more sons; that thence came more denominations of people, the Marsians, Gambrians, Suevians, and Vandalians, and that these are the names truly genuine and original.” (Tacitus, Germania)

Such is what we have of the first recorded ethnogenesis myth of the Germanic peoples. It is preserved in the works of both Tacitus and Pliny, both hailing from the 1st century A.D., and was, presumably, considered “ancient” by the tribes of Germania at the time of it’s recording. Indeed, certain aspects of the “myth” as we have it predate the emergence of Germanic culture in southern Scandinavia by over a  thousand years, as we see in the case of the figure Mannus and his Aryan (aka. Indo-Iranian) cognate, Manu. Of this Manu, who’s name, like Mannus’, means “man, human”, the Mahabharate states,

And Manu was endowed with great wisdom and devoted to virtue. And he became the progenitor of a line. And in Manu’s race have been born all human beings, who have, therefore, been called Manavas. And it is of Manu that all men including Brahmanas, Kshattriyas, and others have been descended, and are therefore all called Manavas. Subsequently, O monarch, the Brahmanas became united with the Kshattriyas. And those sons Manu that of were Brahmanas devoted themselves to the study of the Vedas. And Manu begat ten other children named Vena, Dhrishnu, Narishyan, Nabhaga, Ikshakus, Karusha, Saryati, the eighth, a daughter named Ila, Prishadhru the ninth, and Nabhagarishta, the tenth. They all betook themselves to the practices of Kshattriyas. Besides these, Manu had fifty other sons on Earth. But we heard that they all perished, quarrelling with one another.

Both Mannus and Manu gave their name to us men, both had kingly children that rose to glory among their respective tribes, and both had many other son’s of, ahem, “lesser fame” and/or more local significance. If one goes on to relate Mannus to the Viking Age Heimdal — not an uncommon comparison based on his Eddic appellation “Father of Mankind” — and factors the Rigsthula into the comparison — which tells of how Heimdal fathered and united the various castes of men into a cohesive tribe — the match with Manu is complete. But really, the existing Mannus-Manu correspondence is already quite remarkable and adequately demonstrates the ancientness of (certain aspects of) the lost hymn.

On the other hand, the geography of the tribes would suggest that other elements of it were more recent and pertained specifically to the Germanic peoples; being no earlier than the first waves of migrations that spread and established Germanicism throughout Central Europe and gave rise to the Herminonic (interior) and the Istaevonic (everywhere else) branches of the Folk as found in the hymn. Needless to say perhaps, the Ingvaeonic tribes were made up of those people who remained in the ancestral homeland along the seashores of southern Scandinavia. This would date these elements of the hymn to somewhere in the ballpark of the 1st century B.C. at the latest, and certainly no earlier than the advent of the Celtic Iron Age and the corresponding collapse of Nordic Bronze Age culture (c.500 B.C.).

As such there does seem to be considerable truth indeed to Tacitus’ assertion that this hymn was ancient. It demonstrates a deep awareness of common heritage and shared identity that walked hand-in-hand with the evolution of a “Common” or “Proto-” Germanic tongue (c.500 B.C.) and which, to various degrees, endured the evolutionary divergence of the Germanic language into its various branches , the Migration Age, and even “the Conversion” (ie. of the Anglo-Saxons). It was in fact this enduring memory of common heritage that inspired the first Anglo-Saxon missionaries to evangelize their Danish and Continental brethren in the late 7th century A.D.

For those more familiar with Eddas, the Ancient Hymns seem at first glance an odd thing with little to no relationship to grand and “otherworldly” nature of the Viking Age Creation myths or even to the Anglo-Saxon Caedmon’s Hymn. And sometimes this is cited as evidence of the great changes that took place within Germanic culture between the Iron Age to the Viking Age … and usually for some less than honest reason that has to do with validating the misappropriation of Germanic culture for modern culturo-political ends as exemplified in Universalist Asatru, and which dismisses the numerous commonalities that thread the weave of Germanic identity together and which endured it’s spread over time or space … thus allowing for the quantification of a thing as Germanic. But really, trying to force the Ancient Hymns into the Voluspa or Gylfaginning or Caedmon’s Hymn is to mistake an ethnogenesis for a genesis. The former tells of the origins of a people, the latter the origins of the cosmos. As such, they are not different versions of the same thing. Rather they are different components of the same thing, as can be seen by those with a due familiarity with such legends that tell of the origins of tribes and aetheling (royal) houses as found in the Heimskringla or Gesta Danorum, and related in the tales of such figures as Ingui, Scyld Sceafing and Merovech. The ancient hymns are the “rainbow bridge” that link the abstract, otherworldy mythology to the more concrete and historical evolution of the people. This in the same way that the Old Testament “Genesis” gives way to the legends of the Jews, their rulers, their earthly ordeals, and their own (ethno-culturally specific) evolving relationship with the “divine mystery”.

Tuisto and Mannus

As for the figures to be found in the ancient hymns — Tuisto, Mannus, Ingui, Irmin, Istaev (and the others) — while I have already touched on Mannus above, he is named alongside Tuisto as the co-progenitor of the Germanic people. Linguistically speaking, the name Tuisto is obscure. It could be a corruption of the Proto-Germanic Tiwisko (son of Tiw/God) as Grimm suggested, or it could be some concept built upon the fairly evident Proto-Germanic twa- root, from whence we get the Modern English word two (as in the quantity) … such as twin or twist (the latter of which means dispute/conflict in all of the Germanic languages save the English). While I have been very much inclined to see Tiw himself in Tuisto over the years, and so preferred (and in fact formulated) the possible relation of Tuisto to twist (dispute; ie. Mars Thingsus, TyR is not a Peacemaker), it seems today far more likely that the name was either Tiwisko or Twin. Either would suffice, as either one will ultimately point us back in the direction of the other.

And here is why; the notion of co-progenitors is very well established in the creation of new tribal identities among the Germanic peoples and their various Indo-European relatives. It can be seen in Aggo and Ebbo for the migrating Lombards, Roas and Raptos for the migrating Asdingi, most famously in Horsa and Hengist for the migrating Anglo-Saxons, and even perceived in such Vandal co-rulers as Ambri and Assi, and Vinill and Vandill. In the greater Indo-European world we see it in Romulus and Remus for the tribes of Rome and in Castor and Pollux among the Greeks, and most specifically among the Spartans who modeled their dual kingship after the Dioscuri (Sons of God) wherein one king ruled the peace and the other ruled at war. Such a dual kingship among the Germanic peoples, made up of a priest-king and a warrior-king, is observed in the literature as early as Tacitus, and so contemporary with the “Ancient Hymns”, and as late Jordanes, rears it’s head here and there throughout the better known legends and histories of our folk, eg. Hrothgar and Halga, and can even be gleaned in the relationship between the strongly martial Carolingians and the more sacral Merovingians of France. Moreover, the iconography of the “Divine Twins” and the supremacy of the intimately related “cult of the sun” saturates the rock-art and twinned deposits of the Nordic Bronze Age and continued in high style on the Gallehus Horns and the “twin dancers” of Anglo-Saxon art.  

anglosaxonalcis

While Tacitus names Mannus as the son of Tuisto rather than his brother, this seems more likely some form of mistake in interpretation. Take for a handy example that the Aryan Manu is remembered as the father of mankind, while his fellow Aryan, Yama (Twin), is remembered as the first mortal to have died. One could be left with the impression that Manu is Yama’s father. And yet, in fact, Manu and Yama are remembered as brothers. As such, I tend to favor the theory that Tuisto and Mannus are in fact brothers, a Germaniversal expression of the “Divine Twins” as the co-progenitors of tribes and peoples.      

The Ancient Hymns and the Elder Futhark

Here it is interesting to note that the Germanic mystery alphabet, called the futhorc by the Anglo-Frisians — but more widely remembered simply as “the runes” — was formulated over a time in which the Ancient Hymns were pervasive; marking the “alphabets” beginnings with the experimentation found etched on one of the Negau helms in the 2nd century B.C. and ending with the fully crystallized elder futhark of the 2nd century A.D. This is curious because at least two of the eight staves that make up the 3rd aett or family of the futhorc share the names of the deities of the Ancient Hyms. Namely, Mannus and Ingui.

runesymbol

Now, I am certainly not the first person to have made this observation. And this certainly fed into my desire to equate Tuisto with Tiw, as Tiw’s rune stands at the head of the 3rd aett. The notion began to fall apart however when the notion that Tuisto and Mannus were actually brothers fell into the mix and proved itself the stronger. Nevertheless, as mentioned above, Castor and Pollux were themselves known as the “Dioscuri” or “Sons of Zeus/God”, likewise were their Baltic (Latvian)  counter-parts called the “Dieva deli” or “Sons of Dieva/God” … of which Grimm’s Tiwisko (Son of Tiw/God) would represent a Proto-Germanic cognate of in the singular.

And so we find the rune of Tiw standing right where we might expect it if the theory holds water. But where then is Tuisto? I would suggest that he is to be found in the “ehwaz” stave, which means horse and stems from the same Proto-Indo-European root that gave us such other appellations for the Divine Twins as the Lithuanian “Asvieni” and the Sanskrit “Ashvins”. And so we have in the first four staves of the elder futhark the notion that Tiw (Glory father) and Birch (the fertility principle, ie. the earth, a cow, a mortal woman) gave rise to the Divine Twins as embodied in the staves for Horse and Man; even as Zeus fathered Pollux on the mortal woman Leda (and on her Pollux was made the brother of mortal Castor by the King of Sparta).

These four staves are then followed by the staves named for Water, Ingui, Day, and Homeland; which all but tell the same tale made evident in the legends of Scyld Sceafing and Merovech … of the sea bringing (Water) a divinely favoured one (Ing) who, with the wisdom of the gods (Day), went on to establish a homeland/identity for the folk (Homeland) … or, alternately, who went on to establish a homeland/identity for the folk (Homeland) and the dawning of the first day (Day).

I dunno … it all falls into place a little too conveniently to be casually dismissed.

Well, my time is burning, so I’ll have to leave the sons of  Mannus for another time; which mostly means Irmin as I’ve already dealt with Ingui here while the others brothers, Istvae included, are far too obscure for anything more than sheer speculation and passing commentary.

Be whole!

 

Germanic Belief: Culture, Religion, and Identity

A friend of mine was asked the question the other day, “Can I be a viking, embodying their courage and values without following the gods?” To this my friend, a man not so well versed in the lore (relatively speaking of course), but with a strong and sharp intuition, replied (in so few words) that, “yes, our way of life is our religion“, and this was followed by some comments from others that our ancestors had no concept of “religion” as “that set aside as sacred”.

Of course, Germanic belief was a holistic belief system, which certainly marked the distinction between “what is set aside as sacred” and “what exists in the world of men”. Our limited modern vocabulary and intimate cultural familiarity with the proselytizing, would-be “universalist” religions, often leaves us unfit to the task of defining, or even understanding, intuitively, “ethno-cultural” or “heathen” belief systems.

The basic distinction our ancestors noted was between the innangeard (the community) and the utangeard (outside the community), from which point the innangeard could be further “divided” into the “esegeard” (Asgard, the divine community) and “middangeard” (Midgard, the mortal community). As such, it is true that they really had no sacred-profane dichotomy, but rather dealt in terms of wih (the sacred, that which is set apart), holy (the sanctified community), and unholy (profane, outside the community). They understood that holiness — which stems from the same native Germanic root as such other Modern English words as whole and health — was the temporal product of the hallowing power of wih. As such, holiness, the product of the consecrating power of the gods, can be seen as the totality of a community’s ethno-culturo-historical identity … as we can see in the Tacitus’ comments on the ethno-genesis myth of the Germanic peoples, in the Eddic myths of Creation and the shaping of Ask and Embla, in the Rigsthula and various king-myths and genealogies, as well as the various “hero myths” (and/or indications there of) that show such things as language or mead or letters or beauty, etc. as having a “divine” or “sacred” origin.

In short, our native culture is, not a wih thing by any means — which is what we would deem to be properly “religious” and so the prime concern of priests — but rather a holy thing. It is whole.  The great mystery of divinity given temporal form.

That said, if one was a good community member and participated in the community’s rituals/identity, then, at least within the context of Germanicism, it really didn’t matter what god or gods an individual did or didn’t pray to; as the experience of the first Catholics and Catholic missionaries among our ancestors, who generally extended to them every hospitality, clearly attests. And afterall, the focus wasn’t the maintenance, growth and development of the individual — bad apples were jettisoned rather than indulged — but rather the maintenance, growth and development of the community itself. If the community was strong and healthy, it follows that the generations that spring from it will also be strong and healthy; while any rot would of course have to be prune off lest it spread to the entire community.

Indeed, hearkening back to the early Christian-Germanic relations once again, one can see that a refusal to participate in the big rituals of the community, namely the sacral feast and/or toasts, by consuming at least a morsel/draught, was, at times, a big no-no among out ancestors. We see this as early as the Migration Age Goths (eg. Sabas) to as late as the Viking Age Norwegians (eg. Hakon the Good). We see it inverted among the Anglo-Saxons, where the missionary Mellitus was driven from Essex for refusing to share his own “sacred feast” with the 3 brother-kings that reigned there (as the missionary did with their convert father), and we see it early in Christianity’s history with the Romans as well. And really, if you are in a community, but have no interest in taking part in it’s identity, one has to wonder, what are you doing there??? Other than “perhaps” intending to subvert it?

Personally, I have for a very long time now said that I would rather the company of a Christian or atheist with strong Germanic values and cultural background than a (self-proclaimed) “Heathen” who might certainly, ahem, “have the (names and stories of the) gods”, but who would be utterly unrecognizable to our common ancestors. People are too preoccupied with “the gods”, ie. myths/fantasy-tales. And indeed without an understanding of the culture that supported those myths, from which the myths evolved, a person is going to “read them wrong” every time. Well, a lot of the time, and in regards to all of the finer points anyway.

In the final analysis, I personally would have to say that a person can certainly be a, ahem, “viking” without being preoccupied with priestly matters. One could in fact say that you were primed for it at birth. And remember, your heritage is your heritage. Would you ask your neighbor for permission to collect the inheritance your grandfather left for you? Would you neglect it because of the mockery some other made of the inheritance they received from their grandfather?

Lord of the Ingvaeones

The third is Frikko, who bestows peace and pleasure on mortals. His likeness, too, they fashion with an immense phallus” — Adam of Bremen, Gesta Hammaburgensis

 

yngvifrey

The name Fricco is of course the Latinized version of the better known Old Norse god-name FreyR; itself a title of rulership (rather than a proper name) with a feminine cognate in Old Norse Freyja, and as reflected it’s Old English cognate Frea (fem. Freo). While generally rendered simply as “Lord” the title is indicative of sacral leadership and the peaceable side of rulership, and stands in complimentary juxtaposition to the Old Norse drottin (Old English – drihten), which was also, both, a title of rulership (albeit it martial in this case) and used as a deific title on into Christian times. The word itself stems from the Proto-Indo-European root *pro-, meaning foremost, and so coincides with Snorri Sturlusson’s own assertion that “FreyR is the most renowned of the Æsir” and the words attributed to Tiw (Old Norse – TyR), ie. the glorifying light, in the Eddic poem Lokasenna where he states,

Frey is best of all the exalted gods in the AEsir’s courts“.

The priestly nature of the titular-name “Frea” is itself indicate in the mythology surrounding the deity himself. In the Yngling saga of the Heimskringla we are told that,

Odin placed Njord and Frey as priests of the sacrifices, and they became Diar of the Asaland people

Meanwhile, more subtly, in the Eddic poem Skirnismal we read of how Frea was required to give up his sword and steed in order to win the etinwif, Gerd, as his bride. The name Gerd is of course related to the Old Norse “gard” (OE. – geard), as we see in As-gard and Mid-gard, as well as in Modern English yard and gard-en. It expresses the notion of ordered/settled land, as defined by the presence of the human community and as juxtaposed to the “utangeard” or “wilds” (where the ways of nature reign supreme).  And so this is a myth that reflects the marriage between the spirit of the tribe (as embodied in the priest-king) and the spirit of the (tribal) lands (as embodied in the horse among the Indo-Europeans). The yielding up of weapon and steed in the myth as a necessary act in the ritual of “coronation” is reflected in what Bede said of the Anglii high-priesthood in heathen Northumbria,

it was not lawful before for the high-priest either to carry arms, or to ride on anything but a mare“.

It might also be inferred in Tacitus’ remarks that the high-priests of the tribes of Germania went into battle carrying the sacred standards of their tribe; which itself has a mythic parallel in Frea’s fight against the etin Beli, in which, lacking a weapon, the god is said to have used a stag’s antlers … which are themselves well remembered as a royal standard in the North. To cite a parallel within the greater context of Indo-Europeanism, we have the Roman Flamen Dialis for whom touching either a horse or iron was likewise considered taboo. One might also note the “wizard hat” of the Flamen Dialis’ attire and that we see on Frea in the picture above (among other things).

In the Ynglinga saga we read that,

Frey was called by another name, Yngve; and this name Yngve was considered long after in his race as a name of honour“.

The name Yngvi (Old English – Ingui) means “Offspring, Offshoot, Descendant”, while the Ynglinga saga paints the god as a mortal man who, in ancient times, rose to kingship among the Swedes and founded the royal house known as the Ynglings. Their saga further tells that the Swedes enjoyed a period of great peace and prosperity during his reign, which became known as the “Frith of Frodhi” — frith is a complex concept that expresses a range of inter-related notions that include sacrality, kinship, security, and prosperity — such that when Ingui-frea at last died, they sealed his body within a mound (as opposed to cremating him) and continued to pay taxes to him; believing that as long as they did so peace and prosperity would prevail.

Incidentally, Sweden was perhaps the wealthiest of the Scandinavias into and beyond the Viking Age, and until relatively recently stood as a glowing example of how successful a Socialist system could be; before they (apparently) forgot such fundamentally important concepts as “geard” and it’s companions “(w)holy” and “good”.

Outside of Viking Age Scandinavia, we find reference to Ingui in the Old English poem Beowulf, where the Danes are referred to as “Ing’s Joy”, while the 22nd stave of the Anglo-Frisian futhorc (alphabet) was named for him. The accompany stanza in the Old English Rune Poem states that,”Ing was first seen among the East Danes“, that in the end he departed back over the waves (to Sweden? to the afterlife?), and that thence he was regarded as a “haele”; a word that generally translates simply as “hero” but which can also carry strong connotations of omen or destiny. As with the Swedes, the name Ingui also appears in the genealogy of the royal house of Anglish Bernicia (one of the two Anglii kingdoms that made up united Northumbria), and interestingly, even as the Swedes believed that holy power still emanated from the interred corpse of Ingui, so were the blood and bones of the convert, ie. to Catholicism, King Oswald of Bernica associated with miracles of wholeness and healing. Some even speculate that the tribal name Anglii (from whence we get today’s English) has it’s roots in the god-name Ingui; which would hardly be surprising given the original proximity of the Anglii to the both the Danes and Swedes and the enduring memory of their shared heritage, eg. the Beowulf poem.

Taking a step further back in time and closer to the “Common Germanic” or “Proto-Germanic” period, we find in Tacitus’ 1st century AD work Germania a reference to the ethno-genesis myth of the tribes of Germania. This “ancient hymn” as Tacitus called it is said to have celebrated Tuisto and Mannus as the co-progenitors of the greater Germanic peoples, and that the names for the three main divisions of the folk were named after the most prominent of the children of Mannus. The first of these branches, who comprised all of those tribes living along the seashore, were called the Ingvaeones.

Culture of the Nordic Bronze Age; the Iron Age lands of the Ingvaeones.Interestingly, the seashores of southern Scandinavia are in fact the cradle of Germanic culture and language, and were the homeland of those tribes from c.2,700 BC until the Great Cooling of c.500 BC., when the first waves of migration out of the homeland and into Continental Europe began. The Nordic Bronze Age itself, beginning c.1,800 BCE  was defined by a warmth comparable to that of northern France, a tripling of the infant survival rate, the establishment of trade-routes leading to the British Isles, Egypt, and Greece, the prominence of the Sun-cult and the Divine Twins, and the building of massive burial mounds at which regular offerings were made. It was also the age of the famous seashore rock-carvings, upon which we frequently find the very same ithyphallic imagery that Ingui-Frea would be depicted with centuries later.

The gods association with the seashore lingered on into the Viking Age, as seen in Viga-Glum’s saga where he appears in a dream, enthroned by the waters edge and surrounded by a great crowd of people. We can also easily perceive it in the origins of the Salian Frank royal house, the Merovingians, where a virile bull comes out of the sea to impregnate the Frank-Queen with Merovech, and of course in the legend of Scyld Sceafing, where the child is washed up on the seashore of the Danes and comes to be hailed as their king and to found their royal house, ie. the Skjoldungs); both of which tie in of course with what has already be noted of Ingui’s association with sacral kingship.

While this is hardly an exhaustive study on Ingui-Frea — and didn’t even touch on the wagon-procession, questions of apotheosis vs. euhemerism, relation to the Divine Twins, etc. — I hope it gives the reader a real sense of the great honour and significance of the god; which might be lacking in the Eddic myths with their fixation on Woden (Odhinn) and Thunor (ThorR).

FreyR is the most renowned of the Æsir (gods); he rules over the rain and the shining of the sun, and therewithal the fruit of the earth; and it is good to call on him for fruitful seasons and peace. He governs also the prosperity of men.” — Snorri Sturlusson, Prose Edda