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Author Topic: Asatru is the same as libertarianism?  (Read 5695 times)
luckyorwhat
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« Topic Start: June 04, 2007, 06:06:50 pm »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, and I've gotten into shooting too. I've read some quotes that seem to hint that Asatru is a sort of pro-gun religion, is this right? I mean all religions are pro-self-defence, even Jesus told guys to sell their clothes to buy swords, but some Viking quotes I've seen are really fun, saying things like, ~'always carry a sword, you never know when you'll need it'~ and such. And I'm starting to think that's a good sort of advice - perhaps even moreso in a city than in the forest!

Just looking to see if I'm mis-interpreting this stuff, and either way to find more readings.

Thanks;
Scott
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« Reply #1: June 04, 2007, 06:12:38 pm »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

Scott,

I think you may have some confusion on this. Asatru is a religion and Liberatrianism is a political belief system.

Now, having said that and understanding that I'm not Asatruar but Greek Recon, I can see where there is a strong Libertarian streak running through a lot of Asatru. But that doesn't make it a political belief.
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« Reply #2: June 04, 2007, 06:16:44 pm »

Now, having said that and understanding that I'm not Asatruar but Greek Recon, I can see where there is a strong Libertarian streak running through a lot of Asatru. But that doesn't make it a political belief.

Also, much as many current Asatru may seem like Libertarians, there are also some that aren't.  Also, in the sagas you can see evidence of differences in behaviour.  They may have been willing to fight to defend themselves, for example, but they often went to great lengths to preserve the peace and settle things amicably.
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« Reply #3: June 04, 2007, 06:21:00 pm »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

Many Asatruar are somewhat libertarian politically, but that's really separate from the religion. Asatru is about having a relationship with the Gods of Northern Europe (the so-called Norse Gods), not about one's political position.

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I've read some quotes that seem to hint that Asatru is a sort of pro-gun religion, is this right?

Perhaps, but it doesn't seem nearly as pro-Gun as fundie Christianity. Wink
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« Reply #4: June 05, 2007, 10:00:42 am »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, and I've gotten into shooting too. I've read some quotes that seem to hint that Asatru is a sort of pro-gun religion, is this right?
Ouch.  I see where you get this from, but you're reading a lot into a few points of commonality/compatibility.

I don't think it's accurate to assume that libertarianism is pro-gun, for example - the sociopolitical stance is neutral with regard to the firearms themselves; their issue is governmental control.

The question that really looms large for me is, what sort of libertarian POV?  I notice you capitalize it, so I infer that you're thinking in terms of the political party (and further inferring that you mean the Libertarian Party of Canada).  But there's a lot of variation.  I've known libertarians for whom the idea of even having a political party is contrary to their principles, for example.

There's quite a bit of scope in Paganism for folks of an individualistic, self-responsible bent (and for folks who eat meat, and hunt), not just Asatru and the other Heathen religions.  I'm not trying to steer you away from Asatru here, just saying that whether Asatru is right for you will have to do with whether its gods, practices, and values fit you, rather than with your politics and hobbies.

Sunflower
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« Reply #5: June 05, 2007, 04:52:29 pm »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, and I've gotten into shooting too. I've read some quotes that seem to hint that Asatru is a sort of pro-gun religion, is this right? I mean all religions are pro-self-defence, even Jesus told guys to sell their clothes to buy swords, but some Viking quotes I've seen are really fun, saying things like, ~'always carry a sword, you never know when you'll need it'~ and such. And I'm starting to think that's a good sort of advice - perhaps even moreso in a city than in the forest!

Just looking to see if I'm mis-interpreting this stuff, and either way to find more readings.

Thanks;
Scott

::boggle:: Um... perhaps reiterating what's been said already, but I'm a Libertarian (even considered being an actual party organizer on the local/city level, for a time) who's a Mahayana Buddhist.

My religion is not my politics, and vice versa. I dare say that's true for most folks around TC.
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« Reply #6: June 05, 2007, 06:35:10 pm »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, and I've gotten into shooting too. I've read some quotes that seem to hint that Asatru is a sort of pro-gun religion, is this right? I mean all religions are pro-self-defence, even Jesus told guys to sell their clothes to buy swords, but some Viking quotes I've seen are really fun, saying things like, ~'always carry a sword, you never know when you'll need it'~ and such. And I'm starting to think that's a good sort of advice - perhaps even moreso in a city than in the forest!

Just looking to see if I'm mis-interpreting this stuff, and either way to find more readings.

Thanks;
Scott

Well I am Asatru so I can speak from experience.

I don't see the libertarian side that you are talking about.  I'm not sure what your sources are.  As others have pointed out, Asatru is a religion, Libertarianism is a political philosophy.  Asatruar hold a wide range of political beliefs.  If you check out the Asatru Lore forum there is a poll on political beliefs.

Also the gun views range just as widely as other religions.  I am anti-gun (pro-sword though).  You will probably have more pro-gun Asatru in the States simply because there are more pro-gun people in the States.  I also don't see the connection with hiking/camping...

One final thing.  While the vikings worshipped the same gods as Asatruar, they were not the only ones.  Asatru is not about playing viking, but about being true to the Gods.

The most important thing to read are the Eddas.  The Poetic more than the Prose Edda.  The sagas are also good.  These more than writings by modern Asatru will give you a feeling for the religion without having and Asatruar's personal beliefs cloud things.
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luckyorwhat
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« Reply #7: June 10, 2007, 12:36:23 am »

To all I shouldn't have said Libertarian, to me it's just a sort of theoretical outlook, I shoulda said 'pro liberty' or such. I'm not even in the party. It was a poor comparison to make to a religion, now that I look at it.

Quote from: SunflowerP
Ouch.  I see where you get this from, but you're reading a lot into a few points of commonality/compatibility.

I don't think it's accurate to assume that libertarianism is pro-gun, for example - the sociopolitical stance is neutral with regard to the firearms themselves; their issue is governmental control.

The question that really looms large for me is, what sort of libertarian POV?  I notice you capitalize it, so I infer that you're thinking in terms of the political party (and further inferring that you mean the Libertarian Party of Canada).  But there's a lot of variation.  I've known libertarians for whom the idea of even having a political party is contrary to their principles, for example.

There's quite a bit of scope in Paganism for folks of an individualistic, self-responsible bent (and for folks who eat meat, and hunt), not just Asatru and the other Heathen religions.  I'm not trying to steer you away from Asatru here, just saying that whether Asatru is right for you will have to do with whether its gods, practices, and values fit you, rather than with your politics and hobbies.

I shouldn't have said they were pro-gun, maybe pro-choice is a better way. I'll be heading to the library tomorrow for some Asatru books to learn more.



Also the gun views range just as widely as other religions.  I am anti-gun (pro-sword though).
That's why ice cream comes in differnt flavours:) I like all my fingers too much to play with swords, just teasing:D

Quote
I also don't see the connection with hiking/camping...
The things I was reading sort of seemed like they were about self-reliance and living outdoors, but I'll keep reading more.

Quote
One final thing.  While the vikings worshipped the same gods as Asatruar, they were not the only ones.  Asatru is not about playing viking, but about being true to the Gods.

The most important thing to read are the Eddas.

Will endeavour to do both.
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« Reply #8: June 10, 2007, 05:54:16 pm »

To all I shouldn't have said Libertarian, to me it's just a sort of theoretical outlook, I shoulda said 'pro liberty' or such. I'm not even in the party. It was a poor comparison to make to a religion, now that I look at it.

I shouldn't have said they were pro-gun, maybe pro-choice is a better way. I'll be heading to the library tomorrow for some Asatru books to learn more.


That's why ice cream comes in differnt flavours:) I like all my fingers too much to play with swords, just teasing:D
The things I was reading sort of seemed like they were about self-reliance and living outdoors, but I'll keep reading more.

Will endeavour to do both.

Self-reliance and discipline are tenants for most Asatruar.  Do a search on the Nine Noble Virtues (NNV).  Some Asatruar (I am one of them) think of these as central to Asatru.  Some do not however since they are modern and only derived by reading the Havamal (part of the Eddas).  This could be where you were getting the 'pro liberty' feel.

Living outdoors isn't quite right, although it is common amongst Asatruar, just not really a part.  While not being 'earth based' like many pagans (the focus is the gods), reverence for landvaettir is common.  I know I make sure to offer some beer to the locals after any rite.

As for swords vs. guns, I always think of Obi-wan in Star Wars, "Not as clumsy or as random as a blaster, but an elegant weapon for a more civilized age."
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« Reply #9: June 11, 2007, 01:41:57 am »

Thanks again, the more I'm reading the more I like. The outdoors aspect, it's enjoyable and all but also it's good to feel that just in case one was stuck there they'd be OK. So I'm not so much hugging trees as learning to use them, but it's hard not to be respectful and appreciative.

Plus that's a good old-school quote:)

"When 'arf of your bullets fly wide in the ditch,
Don't call your Martini a cross-eyed old bitch;
She's human as you are -- you treat her as sich,
   An' she'll fight for the young British soldier."
Kipling Cheesy
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« Reply #10: June 11, 2007, 11:50:25 pm »

So I'm not so much hugging trees as learning to use them, but it's hard not to be respectful and appreciative.
That sounds like a pretty Heathen/Asatru POV to me.

It's true that you weren't expressing yourself well, before, but I could see the connections you were making and why they made sense to you.

Reading between the lines, I have an impression that you might have been exposed to a disproportionate amount of tree-hugging, the-earth-is-our-goddess ecoPaganism - that's a fairly common approach to Paganism in post-secondary institutions, and on some campuses may be the dominant form.  You'll find that "in the real world" this isn't as widespread - has anyone pointed you, yet, to TC's Pagan Primer?  That'll give you a better idea of the range of different approaches.  I'm not saying you're on the wrong track in looking at Asatru (from the things you've posted, I think there's a good chance it's right for you, or at the least it's the right place for you to get started), just that it never hurts, and is often useful, to know what-all other folks are doing.

Sunflower
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« Reply #11: June 12, 2007, 09:57:21 pm »

I'm learning about Asatru, and the more I read the more I like what I read. I went to college and had lots of exposure to different viewpoints there, but I think I like the Libertarian POV for life.

I really enjoy hiking and camping, and I've gotten into shooting too. I've read some quotes that seem to hint that Asatru is a sort of pro-gun religion, is this right? I mean all religions are pro-self-defence, even Jesus told guys to sell their clothes to buy swords, but some Viking quotes I've seen are really fun, saying things like, ~'always carry a sword, you never know when you'll need it'~ and such. And I'm starting to think that's a good sort of advice - perhaps even moreso in a city than in the forest!

Just looking to see if I'm mis-interpreting this stuff, and either way to find more readings.

Thanks;
Scott

Ack, sorry I missed this until now.

I too, am Asatru. I also happen to be politically Libertarian. However, I've known many other 'Truar who were hardcore Republican, and some few who were quite Liberal.
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« Reply #12: June 13, 2007, 12:15:10 pm »

Ack, sorry I missed this until now.
I was wondering where you were!  That you hadn't come in on this thread made me wonder if you were working 16-hour days to pay for the new UPS, or something.

Sunflower
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« Reply #13: June 13, 2007, 01:34:50 pm »

I was wondering where you were!  That you hadn't come in on this thread made me wonder if you were working 16-hour days to pay for the new UPS, or something.

Sunflower

Nah, but I did start a new job last week (which I also forgot to tell people). I'm now the I.T. manager for one of the larger construction companies here in NM. Getting settled in has been keeping me insanely busy.
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« Reply #14: June 13, 2007, 06:19:53 pm »

Nah, but I did start a new job last week (which I also forgot to tell people). I'm now the I.T. manager for one of the larger construction companies here in NM. Getting settled in has been keeping me insanely busy.

I wondered where you had been. Good luck at the new job!
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