Categories
Indo-European Norse

Odin / Awtin or Ahura Mazda (Sky father proof)

Below is a break down and quote I saw on a forum regarding Odin when one looks at sources from Persia. Recently I have seen a lot of misinformation in Indo-European and historical study groups which will only result in hurting people’s understanding.

This break down shows the same for my understanding both spiritually and scholarly. To which I state that Odin is the Sky Father for the Germanic / Norse Branch of the Indo-European cosmology and Ahura Mazda would be directly his Persian correlation.

I don’t know if I 100% agree with everything in the statement but it is much better than what is being passed around in some comparative groups.

“Q: Is Persian Allfather Awtin (Abtin) the same as Germanic Allfather Odin? Is Awtin’s wife Franak the same Odin’s wife Frigg? Is Awtin’s son/grandson Tur the same Odin’s son Thor?

I do not think so. Foremostly, if we wanted to investigate the possibility of their common origin in the ancient history based on the hypothesis of a linguistic correlation of their names, it would be not enough to compare the outward similarity of some of the contemporary variants of these names like Abtin and Odin or Tur and Thor, we would have to research the history and etymology of already their ancient antecedents Athwya and Wodanaz or Tuirya and Thunraz.

Regarding the possible parallels in their place within the respective religion and mythology, there is little to speak about since Abtin and Tur, unlike Odin and Thor, are not even gods or supernaturals in the Persian tradition. Since Abtin was neither a divine patriarch nor progenitor of all mankind, I wouldn’t really call him by a title like Allfather. Abtin is only narrated to be the ancestral figure of the major prehistoric noble house from which archaic heroes and kings descended and his place in the lineage of important later figures is his major role as he is not a too prominent character himself in the attested mythology. But since some Nordic royal houses claimed to descend from Odin, the role of an ancestral figure of a dynasty is basically the only shallow parallel between Abtin and Odin.

Tuirya was the name of a nation which was often kind of inimical to the Airya nation. This nation was said to be named after its original king Tuirya, similarly like the Airya nation after its king Airya and the Sairima nation after its king Sairima, these three kings were then identified as brothers and the sons of Thraetaona of the Athwya family. Tuirya, essentially the legendary first Tuiryan king who was jealous of his brother Airya, had very little to do with storms unlike the storm god Thunraz whose very name meant “thunder”, it actually is etymologically related to English thunder similarly like to Persian tondar or German Donner.

From the perspective of not etymological relatedness of the name but of parallels in the religio-mythological position, Odin as the supremely wise Æsiric divine patriarch, the king of the heaven and the earth and furnisher of the world, the vivifier of mankind and the pronouncer of magical incantations who lives in the divine realm connected to this world by the Bifrost bridge and guarded by two great wolves which is reached by the ghosts of the worthy deceased ones, who awaits the ultimate clash with the antagonistic supernatural forces and who uses talking ravens, could be argued to loosely correspond in these respects to Ahura Mazda, the supremely wise Ahuric divine Father and fashioner of the world, the king of the heaven and the earth, the creator of mankind and the pronouncer of sacred mantras who lives in the divine realm connected to this world by the Chinwad bridge and guarded by two great hounds which is reached by the ghosts of the worthy deceased ones, who awaits the ultimate clash with the demonic forces and uses talking Karshiptar bird (literally “Black-Winged”, from karshi- “black” and -ptar “wing”, presumed to be probably a supernatural raven of Ahura Mazda).

I named the particular points of resemblances because there are on the other hand also many dissimilarities in the other respects. Ahura Mazda is the prototypical all-perfect inherently immortal unique God while Odin is a much more limited god with more human-like life and also with sometimes kind of unpredictable character, such differences are of cource ensured by the overall theological discrepancies between Zoroastrianism and Old Norse religion. But although most of the theology differs to a great extent, the other aspects of the religious substrate have similarities and I do not think there was more Ahura Mazda-like figure than Odin in the attested Old Norse religion.

Quotes:

‘Thus therefore do we offer our liturgy to Ahura Mazda who made both the creatures and the order, who made both the good waters and the plants, who made both the celestial lights and the earth and all good things in between, to Him who made them in His greatness by His command and artistry and who is preeminent among all who foster the living creatures.’

(Avesta, Yasna 37:1–2)

‘O Maker of the material world, thou Holy One! Who is he who brought the Religion of Mazda into the Vara which Yima made?’ Ahura Mazda answered: ‘It was the bird Karshiptar, O holy Zarathushtra!’

(Avesta, Videvdad 2:42)

‘Whosoever shall smite either a shepherd’s dog, or a house-dog, or a vagrant dog, or a trained dog, his soul when passing to the other world, shall fly howling louder and more sorely grieved than the sheep does in the lofty forest where the wolf ranges. No soul will come and meet his departing soul and help it, howling and grieved in the other world; nor will the dogs that keep the [Chinwad] bridge help his departing soul howling and grieved in the other world.

(Avesta, Videvdad 13:8–9)

Ahura Mazda answered: ‘When the man is dead, when his time is over, then the wicked, evil-doing Daevas cut off his eyesight. On the third night, when the dawn appears and brightens up, when Mithra, the hallowed celestial with beautiful weapons, reaches the all-happy mountains, and the sun is rising: ‘Then the fiend, named Vizaresha, O Spitama Zarathushtra, carries off in bonds the souls of the wicked Daeva-worshippers who live in sin. The soul enters the way made by passing time, and open both to the wicked and to the righteous. At the head of the Chinwad bridge, the holy bridge made by Mazda, they ask for their spirits and souls the reward for the worldly goods which they gave away here below.

(Avesta, Videvdad 19:28–29)

[And] as regards [the bird] Karshipt one says, “It knew how to articulate words, and [it] carried and propagated the Revelation into the enclosure prepared by Jam {Jamshed}; and there they utter the Avesta in the language of birds.”

(Iranian Bundahishn 24:25)”

https://www.quora.com/Is-Persian-Allfather-Awtin-Abtin-the-same-as-Germanic-Allfather-Odin-Is-Awtins-wife-Franak-the-same-Odins-wife-Frigg-Is-Awtins-son-grandson-Tur-the-same-Odins-son-Thor

Post was made by a user called Zartusht Ashavan.

Categories
Christianity Indo-European Norse

Regarding Santa Claus and Paganism.


It seems there is a video from Prof. Jackson Crawford regarding Santa not being representative of Odin.

In some ways he is correct. Because Santa Claus and the many myths that surround the Christmas time aren’t just about Odin, instead they are amalgamation of various Norse and other Indo-European culture. (Along with some original Christian and near east concepts.) Especially given the Germanic Northern and Western influence on the Santa myth, which is the primary influence in the North American concept, one can begin to understand how Santa is both various Christian Saints and Pagan concepts merged together.
So, in this post I am going to list a few of the rather Pagan connections to Christianity.
First I will address some of Prof. Crawford’s points.

1. Sleipnir has 8 Legs and Santa has 8 reindeer: First he debunks this arbitrarily. Obviously 8 Legs don’t equal to 8 different beings. But I suppose he hasn’t heard of allegory before. Also when two of the Reindeer are called Donner and Blitzen (Thunder and Lightning) it is a connection to Thor (Donar = Thunor). Yes the eight reindeer are a newer addition as he used to have 1 and sometimes more than one that pulled his sleigh. What he doesn’t do is delve into the various connections to the Wild Hunt. Jacob Grimm popularized the term Wilde Jagd (“Wild Hunt”) and wrote about it in his Deutsche Mythologie (1835) as proof of surviving Germanic Pagan beliefs. The Wild hunt is thought to ride through the clouds or mist, in the night sky and claim lost souls. Often they would be appeased by offerings. Much like leaving offerings for Santa and his reindeers. Other figures aside from Odin that were euhemerized into the tradition were Theodoric the Great, Angel Gabriel, the Devil, Charlemagne, or the welsh Gwyn ap Nudd. Those who were associated as hunters accompanying their leader were usually the spirits of the dead, who either returned or arose with his passing by, the Fae, or Elves and sometimes Valkyries or Psychopomps. If you haven’t noticed the theme is that of death and passing as well as one’s ancestors as Fae or Elves (Alf) are ancestral spirits. Often the Death of the year or the sun is seen in Winter (Baldr’s death for example). No this isn’t inherently an Odinic concept but one can see that it is connected to the Old world and both Paganism and folklore in general.

2. Santa wears Red but Odin wears Blue, Grey, or spotted clothing: Yes, but he also is said to take various disguises. Santa also doesn’t always wear read. He has been depicted wearing blue or white in many cases especially in Slavic regions. It is true that Santa is depicted often more akin to his Saintly / religious priest clothing in various European countries, especially down south. No one will say for sure where the Red suit and a rather Phrygian cap as well as the Holly and pipe come from originally. However, I will state that they are rather Scythian in design. The cap, the buttoned-up suite, and pipe are very akin to various groups in the Steppe lands and Persian cultural influences. Artwork of Odin has often included a smoking pip as well and one can see within Tolkien’s Odinic figure of Gandalf (Wand Elf) that pipe smoking fits the motif. As for the Holly there are a lot of Euhemerized concepts of Holly which can imply a Christian allegory but also the concept of the Greenman of folklore or the Mistletoe of Baldr’s death.

3. Odin is not a figure associated with gifts: This is accurate as long as one is speaking of gifts in the method of Santa, however, to say providing offering to the Gods or Odin for blessings or a boon in return is very much within Pagan belief. Being naughty or nice could be implying being pious and serving the Gods. This may be a much more Christian aspect of Santa but one implying that Odin or the Sky father does not provide blessing or providence over mankind would be a gross misunderstanding. Yes, in the Saga’s and Eddas Odin isn’t overtly kind or selflessly giving, but that shouldn’t be interpreted as “evil” or a lack of any empathy for mankind as Odin is concerned primarily with the balance of Order and Chaos. Also Santa’s helpers such as Black Pete, or his counter part such as Krampus haven’t been always been represented as the most kind and benevolent beings.

4. Odin is associated with winter solstice holiday of Jól or Yule which is the Proto-Germanic word *jehwlą meaning Joke or to play (Joy) but has also been considered to possibly be connected to a word for wheel like the turning of the year. Odin is called the Jólnir (the Yuler) as Prof. Crawford points out. Also, often you hear the word Yule Father from time to time. This is, in my opinion, in direct correlation to where the association of Father Christmas would come into play.

In addition to the point he mentions I’ll go into a few other points. The three “Kings” of Christianity are Magi (Singular Magus) or Magoi of Persian religion. Their seeking of Christ and divining his arrival via the stars is a direct attempt to merge Indo-European faith and divine son / God-King worship with that of the Hebraic Messiah. Meanwhile, there is plenty of scholarly speculation of Mithraic connections to this worship as well. The Magi had their own cultic following within Christian mysticism and in the esoteric alchemical practices. You will sometimes still see an adoration of the tree Magi almost as much as one would of the Christ child. Though it is not needed to be mentioned here, as I have mentioned ad nauseum, The Sky Father, divine or holy mother, and God or Demi-God son is a pan-Indo-European and even near eastern motif. The tale of the Angel coming to the pasture to inform the Shepard’s of Christ’s arrival is very similar to the visit of the Goddess to the Shepard in Hesiod’s Theogony where they tell him of the lineage of the Gods as well as the creation story. On a sidenote many of the Christian intepretation of myths or understanding of the cosmos is directly comparable to that of the Theogony.

These aren’t the only connection that Christianity has to Pagan religions, especially regarding Holy Days (Holidays) as a whole article could be written about Saturnalia alone. Nor is this even a full encompassing article on all of the various details and local folklore that is associated with Yule (the Yule Goat for instance).

In Regards to Mr. Crawford. He is a linguist and historian. His translations are good. However, too many Pagans who follow him like he knows everything because he knows more about language and history than they do so They flock to him regarding religion, which he isn’t an authority on. This is not an insult to a man who understands Indo-European languages rather well and should be learned from for Old Norse information. It is a statement that one should not look towards one linguistic “Scholar” as a bastion of all knowledge of on their own heritage or on Indo-European spirituality. Authorities are good to refer to, but should be cross examined. Do not let one person’s conclusions rule what you believe without doing more digging as well.

It can be easily mentioned here that Euhemerism, attempts at conversation, the Germanization of Christianity, and merging of faiths it was results in this Odinic and general Pagan+Christian appeal that Christmas and Yule have. While much of the modern additions, such as Misses Claus, Elves, Candy, Coca-Cola, and various other elements are often added for product placement or joyous myth creation from the Americas, it doesn’t change the source of these myths being that of a predominately Germanic origin.

In conclusion we can say, Odin is as much Santa as Santa is Saint Nicholas, and that Christmas is as Pagan as Yule is Christian.

I hope you found this article enjoyable and enlightening regardless of the faith you practice.
In this current climate where all holidays are being threatened, it is good for us to enjoy the practice of our heritage and embrace a sense of spirituality and joy during the holidays.
Hammer and Vajra

Written by Zachary Gill 23 December 2020

P.S This of course isn’t even delving into the Slavic beliefs or Orthodoxy Christianity’s intepretation of Santa Claus.
Link to Crawford’s original video if you are interested in the points I am mentioning.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_o5ih9WuCxQ