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Why I am Not a Pagan
Heathen Fundamentalism in an Atheistic Society


“You take religion and build a roof over it and it’s gone. It’s no longer a work of God but a work of man.”

-Sea Daddy

I am mostly offline now. I did recently view a video in which one of my favorite dissident thinkers, Varg Vilkernes, described the indigenous religions and spiritual traditions of Japan as Pagan. This is a gross mischaracterization. Pagan specifically refers to villagers in premodern Christendom who clung to the old gods in their ignorance. Japan is outside of Christendom and applying Pagan to that culture is misleading. More importantly, it points to the roots of the current pagan reactionary trends on the Dissident Right as rooted in Christianity, defined by Christianity. In my heathen eyes, someone who stands on the shoulders of Christianity to resurrect the faiths it long-ago extinguished has been diverted within.

However, a Heathen was a person outside of Christendom, a barbarian that lived on the wild uncultivated heaths of the British Isles and later the forests of North America. Heathens were originally the people of the Heather.

Pagans were backward folk living under the yoke of Christendom.

Heathens were outsiders, barbarians, aliens, savages; they were OTHER and beyond Christendom, survivors of an earlier age. After all, the Pagan faiths were easily overcome by Christianity because they were already municipal religions, forms which various strains of Christianity have drawn heavily from. For instance, the building of a church, God-house, sanctuary, temple is a fundamentally Pagan tradition and came into Christianity through acceptance of the faith into the Roman political hierarchy in late antiquity.

In either case, Heathen or Pagan, we define ourselves according to the terms adopted by a rival, younger, usurping belief system, but which words came from the original Non-Christian languages. Stock definitions of Heathen and Pagan place this person outside of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Not content to be defined by those who would erase my mind, I prefer Heathen Fundamentalism, which is to look at the spiritual mindscape of the world from a vantage antecedent to organized civic religions, that is to say the adoption of a pre-civilized view which recognizes all of these religions as descending from a more ancient and lest corrupted [largely by human interpretation] form.

There is a helpful aspect to Christianity, especially since devote Christians are now a hated minority in the modern scheme, for we [me and the other Heathen out there, whoever you are] have a natural ally in Christians, in that the world system is now entirely atheistic with Christians as hated by secular humanists and atheists as medieval and early modern Christians detested Pagans and Heathens.

One may look to the oft-renewed Christian example of discarding their various corrupted forms [old line denominations] and going directly to their ancient texts for inspiration, rather than abiding by accreted convention passed down by politicized churches.

As a Heathen I have zero desire to preach, witness or convert by other means. These are not Heathen behaviors, but are aspects of the three great religions founded in the Middle East, based on an Edenic, garden-based, domesticated vision of life.

The believer who needs others to believe is not a firm believer.

I also view all religious folk as potential friends or enemies depending solely on their behavior. I do have a preference for sky gods, but every rain needs a vessel, so I can even get along with Gaia Girls.

To return to the spark that set this thought candle flickering, Varg’s kind of other-hating paganism has a tendency to mirror those faiths which he detests by engaging in the dialogue of metaphysical invalidation. The world’s foremost problem is atheism, the worship of the human being and its material props and civic plight. Every time an adherent to one transcendent religion successfully besmirches another, he puts a dagger in the heart of all transcendent religions, thus feeding the beast which is the largest religion in human history, the worship of humanity via the warped prism of atheism, which I call The God of Things.

I might also remind that atheism proceeds from religion and has never been pre-existent among known human populations. Atheism in the modern world has two sources: Judaism and Christianity. If one looks to atheistic arguments there is but one strawman they argue against and it is Christianity. Some prominent atheistic thinkers, such as Marx, were the sons of preachers or rabbis. So, with the tiny number of Heathens or Pagans out there, it is not wise to attack those religions, including Islam, which now stand directly in the path of the soul-eating machine that will not stop until it extinguishes our every hope and dream.

To be a Good Samaritan to those civic religious people who pity me for being on the express train to Eternal Damnation is my credo, because they are my metaphysical meat-shield.

That is Heathen Fundamentalism as this unrepentant sinner sees it.

Definitions

heath·en

ˈhēT͟Hən

derogatory noun: heathen

Origin

Old English hǣthen, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch heiden and German Heide; generally regarded as a specifically Christian use of a Germanic adjective meaning ‘inhabiting open country,’ from the base of heath.

heath

hēTH

noun

an area of open uncultivated land, especially in Britain, with characteristic vegetation of heather, gorse, and coarse grasses.

Do know that the most striking difference between civic religions and Heathenry is that the former sees the wilderness as an abomination that must be tamed and made fruitful by man under God’s judgment and that the latter holds the wilderness as sacred, being the virgin creation of God. From this divergence one can plainly see why heathenry has never led to atheism and why all civic religions have devolved—often, repeatedly—into atheistic social constructs.

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Jeremy BenthamJuly 22, 2018 10:20 PM UTC

“As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.”

-Matthew 10:7-8 (NIV)

“It was benevolence to strangers, their care for the graves of the dead and the pretended holiness of their lives that have done most to increase atheism (Christianity).”

-Julian the Apostate, Last Pagan Roman Emperor, 361-363 A.D.

The English word pagan comes from the Latin word ‘paganus’, meaning ‘country dweller, or ‘country man’. In the parlance of the early imperial Roman Army it meant ‘civilian’, a citizen or subject who was not in the military. When Christianity came on the scene early Christians referred to themselves as ‘militi Christi’ (soldiers of Christ), campaigners whose duty it was to be a witness and spread the good news (Gospel) of God’s love and offer of salvation to all Mankind. So likewise Christians took to calling non-Christians ‘civilians’/ ‘pagans’. By the end of the Fourth Century, when Christianity was made the only legal religion in the Empire by the Emperor Theodosius I, ‘pagan’ had become a pejorative term referring to those ‘bitter clingers’ who still adhered to the old polytheistic religions. Believers in false gods, gods who either did not exist or did not have the power of salvation. Interestingly enough pagan Romans had for many years previous referred to Christians as ‘atheist’ precisely because they refused to believe in or honor the Greco-Roman pantheon (including the emperor himself). The gods who were the patrons and protectors of Rome. So the pagan Romans believed such ‘atheism’ to be dangerous and deserving of condemnation and horrific persecution. Correct worship was considered to be vitally important in the ancient world. A matter of public as well as private concern. After all, if the gods felt dissed they could be vindictive and visit all manner of misfortune and calamity on the country and its residents. You’ve got to stick with the winner then. Who is the most powerful god? Therefore enforcing correct worship was a matter of grave concern for the rulers of the state. Still is, isn’t it? Although people in our post-modern society do not believe that their lives are controlled by supernatural forces (for the most part at least), so now the idea that praying incorrectly could bring about ruin seems preposterous. Nevertheless, the powers-that-be that run our contemporary society are determined to enforce correct belief in certain orthodoxies of social and political thought, aren’t they? They diligently police people’s private speech and swiftly inflect punishment on all those caught disobeying or expressing disbelief in the approved narrative (See The Bubbafly Effect http://takimag.com/article/the_bubbafly_effect_david_cole/print#axzz5M1OcfTq7). Fringe ‘religions’ are persecuted today just as they were in ancient times. There is no such thing as ‘no religion’, since everyone, atheists/ secular humanists included, have doctrines that they accept as an article of faith, without any concrete evidence to support them. For example, Marxists in the West believe that the only reason Communism hasn’t worked is because the ‘right’ people haven’t tried it yet. They are obviously upset with the Russians for having abandoned the ‘noble’ experiment of the USSR then, which is why they are portraying them as an enemy of the West now and want to see them punished. Even to the point of starting a war with them.
responds:July 23, 2018 1:33 PM UTC

Thank you so much for this well worded reply, Jeremy.

You are one of the many men who make me a Cristian sympathizer.
nealJuly 17, 2018 8:55 PM UTC

I don't know. I think sometimes that whole animist and sky god thing makes a lot of stuff crazy.

Maybe a feral Christ is not such a bad deal.

Out here on the rez the javelinas do not herd into the water. Momma raised them right.
Mike_CJuly 16, 2018 9:57 PM UTC

Much to think about in this essay/post—this comment will not do even a part of it justice. That said, I suspect that you and Varg are partially talking past each other, in large part due to using the same words to mean rather different things. I would note that your revulsion for what you term The God of Things is very much in accord with Varg's world view. My take is that he loathes Christianity because of what it displaced in western and northern Europe. If it had been Buddhism, he would loathe that too, though perhaps not to the same degree.

>two sources: Judaism and Christianity

Personally I view all Abrahamic religions (which I term "Hot-Desert Monotheisms") with deep suspicion, though I am most opposed to the most recent, but to get back to the point, recall that Christianity is a Judaic heresy, so I'm not sure you've got TWO sources. As to "atheistic thinkers" such as Marx, I would argue that far from being a-theistic, their political beliefs play EXACTLY the same spiritual role as religious dogma did for others. Progressives have their own catechisms, their own invocations of saints and idols, and ritualistic condemnation of demons, that is no less religious/cultic than any other essentially irrational (or supra-rational) belief system commonly labeled as a religion.

Back to Varg, I'd note that he appears to be an autodidact. Much of what he says is interesting, a few things are wise, but he also goes off into the weeds at times, particularly on issues of science in general and genetics specifically. Like many people, he seems to have internalized the straight Mendelian genetics (which in real life applies to surprisingly little) model, and goes overboard with the notion of form always being due to a biological function. "Africans are perfect[ly evolved] for Africa" or "Northern Europeans have blue eyes because..."
responds:July 17, 2018 5:39 PM UTC

Very nice comment, Mike C.

My view is that atheism is entirely theistic. I will do a piece on this specifically.

Varg offers many useful perspectives.
LaManoJuly 16, 2018 5:53 PM UTC

"The believer who needs others to believe is not a firm believer."

That's true, but having a "need" for other people to believe, in order to validate one's own belief, or because misery loves company, or for other reasons is not a any part of Christianity.

Witnessing to others is done to give others the opportunity to hear the Gospel, upon which they are free to accept it, reject it, or think about it.

Dragging an infidel to Paradise by a lock of their hair is someone else's deal.
responds:July 17, 2018 5:54 PM UTC

The need for others to believe is something I have noticed to be a personal inclination and that these inclinations seem to funnel certain types of personalities into certain types of Christian denominations: I have known numerous Christians who could not tolerate any personal interaction with someone who would not convert to their version of Christianity. I have known many other Christians who are perfectly comfortable interacting with others without attempting to convert non-Christians.

However, until the advent of universalistic, dualistic religions in the Middle East, there was no such thing as witnessing and the drive to convert non-believers into believers which has been at the very core of Christianity since its inception. Christianity exists beyond Ethiopia only because of its inherent drive to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ and his ministry and sacrifice to non-Christians.

Previous to Zoroaster and Moses before him believers in one religion were perfectly content to practice religious tolerance and/or adopt aspects from other religions. The idea that there is only one true religion flows exclusively from the Middle East, and is not exclusively Abrahamic.