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
Indo-European

In defense of the Helm of Awe (Aegishjalmur)

Often people who are interested in “Viking” culture will get the Aegishjalmur as tattoo or printed on an item as a talisman for protection. This is used as a cultural designator of their “Viking” or Norseness. On the Other hand those who are in opposition of this usage will be pushy in their denial stating how it is found in a “Christian” mystic books and references and how it is a form of Solomonic magic. This is rightfully so that they say this given the forms of alchemy and hermetic faiths that went with Christian mysticism of the time.
To this I raise you the Ashtanga yantra. This Yantra (a meditative seal or image) is often said to have the same properties.

Here is a quote regarding this Yantra.
“Ashtanga yantra is the yantra that detains the word in the mouth of the enemy.” Ashtanga yantra is a real shield of protection, backed into the archetypes of the collective unconscious.

The spears of this Yantra are that of Shiva’s Trishula and the lay out matches much of the same. One should also note that other Yantra and Mandala share similarities with “Abrahamic” magic symbols and properties.

While the Seals and Keys of Solomon are attributed to the ancient wise king and his powers given to him by God, one must note that the surfacing of many of these came around the 16th century in Europe (though the type of seal predated it by far during early Christian worship and other Alchemical texts). They incorporated a lot of Greek magical influences as well. The Greek Gods (Planets) were often invoked as well as Greek mythos being in the form of “demons”.

While it is stated that this Yantra predates the other symbols it is something I cannot prove. However, what I can speculate is the Persian Indo-Iranic influence. Alchemy itself had a heavy Mideast and at times Persian influence to it (sometimes Islamic sourced). It isn’t a hidden fact that Judaism heavily incorporated elements from Persian religion and later Greek. The rest of these western symbols are heavily influence by Kabbalah. Kabbalah took a lot of sources from other religious contexts at the time (possibly Gothic in Spain, Steppe Khazar and Greco-Roman) as did Alchemy. Not to mention the worship and reverence to the 3 Magi in Christian mysticism and Gnosticism which gives a Persian element as well.

Persia, Greek and India (Bactrian Kingdoms, Alexander the Great, Kushan Empire, etc) all had close ties.

So minus the Hebrew texts in any Solomonic or otherwise Magical seal, and add in Greek, Slavonic, Runes, or some sort of Indic script, then change the invocations to the element and God to which would be appropriate in an Indo-European context…and what is keeping either symbol from being just as Indo-European as the one beside it? (Picture related)

Don’t let somethings possible connection to another religion, especially if it is the most “Pagan” or Indo-European aspect of that religion (such as some Christian mysticism) keep you from enjoying and understanding the depths of a symbol or a tradition.

Poetic Edda Fáfnismál Stanza 16
The Helm of Awe
I wore before the sons of men
In defense of my treasure;
Amongst all, I alone was strong,
I thought to myself,
For I found no power a match for my own.

Hammer and Vajra!
Written by Zachary Gill 05 January 2020

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

Categories
Christianity Indo-European Vedic

Official Book Recommendation List

Hammer and Vajra Official Book Recommendation List

I think a lot of people looking into Germanic Heathenry or other forms of Paganism are rather confused on good study material. Often, they get recommended a bunch of Wiccan or Super-Neo Pagan books that are good for what they are, maybe, but not for an understanding of European paganism in the context of folk religion and greater Indo-European interconnective understanding. So below I am going to provide a list of books I recommend in various aspects of Indo-European, Pagan, Vedic, and Germanic studies. This will include the basic primers of spiritual scripts as well for beginners.

These books are all recommendations for their content not for the sociopolitical context of the author or the time the author wrote, be that opinion conservative or liberal.

I am also providing Amazon Links for those who would like to purchase and support these Authors.

The post is long so please look throughout if you want to see something in particular you are personally following or interested in.

General Indo-European understanding

Comparative Mythology by Prof Jaan Puhvel

This book is the best I can recommend in understanding Indo-European connectivity between ancient religions. It might be rather scholarly and hard for some to understand but I feel it is a bit more approachable than some of Georges Dumézil’s works. Though I would say much of his works should be sought out for comparison if you can find one in English. I personally think that “Comparative Mythology” is the best jumping point for anyone wanting to understand the inner connectivity for these traditions.

Bulfinch’s Mythology

This may seem like an odd choice as it is the most mainstream, however, it is also the best collections of “myth” and historical attested legends / lore you will find in almost any book joined together.

Syncretic Indo-European Faith (Hammer & Vajra)

It has come time to recommend my own book.

“A compendium of Indo-European religion and a guide for the spiritual concepts of Vedic Heathenism. A Syncretic Indo-European Faith by Zachary Gill is an introduction to a syncretic modern faith, to include the practices, history, culture, and values that makes up this IE based Heathen path. Using both academic research and personal gnosis, Mr. Gill illustrates how the roots of Indo-European peoples and their many-branched faiths can guide the modern heathen. This book is especially for those who wish to reinvigorate their practice. He examines the IE deities in-depth, contrasting, and comparing them across branches and offering a study of how deities have changed in both appearance and function over time and culture. It is meant as a guide and companion book for those interested in discovering the standard practices found within all IE faiths, a background that all peoples of Indo-European descent share.”

Summoning the Gods by Collin Cleary.
This is probably my favorite book to understanding the divine / the Gods and Monism. It does a decent comparison of Indo-European philosophy and thought while showing the inner connectivity of divinity. It is a bit harder to find a physical copy nowadays.

Germanic / Heathenism

There is a bit of controversy regarding whose translations you should trust. While I love that the older 1800s translations from Thorpe and Bellows. Though modernly a lot of people recommend the translations of Prof. Jackson Crawford. I personally have only read a bit of his books. I will say cross comparing various translations might be the best approach.

Poetic Edda

The Poetic Edda/Elder Edda is mostly written down within the Codex Regius, a 12th -century manuscript, but is considered to be poems that had been passed via oral tradition since much earlier. The author of this is unknown, as it is thought to be various authors throughout. This Edda is the primary source and sacred text of most modern Germanic Pagan movements and religions. It is broken into various poems of which the Hávamál and the Rígsþula are contained. However, it is the Völuspá, which is considered to be pivotal in understanding the beliefs of the Early Germanic peoples as it not only tells of the creation of the cosmos but foretells the future end and rebirth of the world.

Hávamál

The Hávamál (Old Norse: sayings of the High One) is included as
part of the Codex Regius (Approx. 1270 A.D), the Icelandic Book of
Kings. While the Codex Regius is filled with various poems pertaining
to the Norse gods, it also contains a lot of euhemerist concepts. That
being said, the Hávamál is a group of poems that are spiritually
attributed to sayings from Odin himself. These poems are broken up
into different groupings of subjects that provide advice and wisdom
for daily life. To many modern heathens, these poems are considered
divine spiritual wisdom. The portion of the Hávamál that deals with
Odin’s sacrifice to his higher self on the World Tree, as well as the
usage of the Runes, stand out from the rest of the poems and are
often the focus of esoteric and metaphysical philosophies and ritual.

Sagas

There are many Viking, Germanic, Scandinavian, and other Sagas which would take a long time to list completely. One of my main recommendations for this would be those published by Penguin Publishing. I will say the Völsunga Saga and Nibelungenlied stand out as they have influenced western culture and understanding much more than people realize.

Beowulf

Beowulf is a ‘novel’ or Saga said to have originated from around
700 AD. It is written in Old English (Anglo-Saxon) and tells the Saga
of Beowulf a Germanic Hero. While the tale is written from a rather
Christian perspective, it is easy to surmise Pagan traditions and
language from it as the attempts to point out what is pagan and what
is not within the Saga works as its own reverse engineering. In many
ways, this is a sacred book to Germanic Pagans.
You might find it interesting to know that J.R.R. Tolkien did his own translation of Beowulf.
https://www.amazon.com/Beowulf-Translation-Commentary-J-R-R-Tolkien/dp/0544570308/ref=sr_1_7?dchild=1&keywords=beowulf&qid=1608371722&sr=8-7

The most recommended and commonly used Beowulf translation is this bilingual one.
https://www.amazon.com/Beowulf-New-Verse-Translation-Bilingual/dp/0393320979/ref=sr_1_5?dchild=1&keywords=beowulf&qid=1608371722&sr=8-5

Prose Edda

The Prose Edda, also called the Younger Edda, was written by
Snorri Sturluson, who was an Icelandic Historian, lawman, and
scholar who lived in the 13th century. He wrote Skaldic poems,
which gave a brief history of the world and covered the “mythologic
history” of the Norse. Most of his writings were based on the Codex
Regius and were filled to the brim with Euhemerism. While this is very
important to historians and those who want to glean what they can
from his writings, it is indeed set in the Christian context, unlike that
of the Elder or Poetic Edda for the most part.

The Northern Dawn: A History of the Reawakening of the Germanic Spirit: From the Twilight of the Gods to the Sun at Midnight

This book is great for understanding Germanic Paganism and how it was Christianized. This is a Great book in understanding the Laws and Indo-European spirit that was behind much of Germanic faith and culture before, during, and after the rise of Christianity.

The Big Book of Runes and Rune Magic: How to Interpret Runes, Rune Lore, and the Art of Runecasting by Edred Thorsson

Dream of the Rood

https://www.facebook.com/hammerandvajra/posts/2685904098322073

Deutsche Mythologie by Jacob (Ludwig Karl) Grimm
https://www.amazon.it/Deutsche-Mythologie-Jacob-Grimm/dp/3932412249

If you want to know more about the Honorable Mr. Grimm please check out my post here.
https://www.facebook.com/hammerandvajra/posts/2880522322193582

Saxon Heathenism

Path to the Gods: Anglo-Saxon Paganism for Beginners by Swain Wodening https://www.amazon.com/Path-Gods-Anglo…/dp/147517666X

If you want a further breakdown on Saxon Heathenism please check out my post here.

https://www.facebook.com/hammerandvajra/posts/2735699603342522

Gothic Paganism / Gothic Christianity

Books by Aelfric Avery and Edred Thorsson / Stephen Flowers

Gutiska Hunslastaths Razda by Aelfric Avery
A Gothic heathen liturgy in the Wulfilan Gothic language with a modern English interlinear translation which honours the gods and goddesses of the ancient Goths. The liturgy consists of the ritual practices of modern-day Gothic heathens which are based on what is known of the ancient Germanic heathen rites.”
https://www.lulu.com/…/paperback/product-22653103.html

The Mysteries of the Goths by Edred Thorsson.
“After providing a concise view of the history of the ancient Goths and their legacy, this text embarks on an ambitious esoteric adventure into the realm of authentic Gothic lore. These adventures encompass the particulars of the ancient Gothic religion, both its pagan roots and Arian-Christian expressions. The mysteries of the unique Gothic alphabet, a synthesis of Runic, Greek and Roman lore, are deeply explored in ways never before revealed. The great Gothic treasures and artifacts, such as the so-called Temple Treasure and the magical Gothic spears of destiny, are also systematically brought to light. This book if for all who treasure the deep Gothic heritage and legacy.”

Gaut’s Descendants: Gothic Religion and Culture in Germania by Aelfric Avery
“Gaut’s Descendants: Gothic Religion and Culture in Germania explores the religion and culture of the Goths and the Gothic influence on other Germanic tribes. Some of the topics examined include: the gods and goddesses of the Goths; the rituals and magic of the Goths; Gaut, the founding father god of the Goths, his surviving myths and his cult of sacral kingship; the various influences that contributed to the synthesis of Gothic religion and culture; the nature of Gothic Christianity and survivals of Gothic heathenry in Christian times; how the Migration Age layer of Germanic mythology differed from the more well-known Viking Age layer of Germanic mythology; how the Goths contributed to Germanic mystical and religious concepts preserved in the Eddas such as the differences between the Aesir and Vanir gods; the substantial influence of the Goths on the legend and poetry of the rest of the Germanic world, especially in Viking Age Scandinavia and Anglo-Saxon England.”

Slavic Paganism

Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of good Primary sources regarding writing on Slavic Paganism.
I would recommend a few authors but it would result in a battle among people whether the sources were legitimate or not.

I made a post on the basics of Slavic Paganism if anyone is interested. Anything further than this I would have to ask others to step in for more clarity.
https://www.facebook.com/hammerandvajra/posts/2821917288054086

Celtic Faith

Celtic Gods and Heroes by Marie-Louise Sjoestedt

If one wants to cross examine Celtic Faith as well, which is inner connected with Germanic faith (most Germanics being Celtic as much as they are Germanics and both tribes coming from the East originally). This one doesn’t focus on the Gauls as much as I would like it to.

For a fuller breakdown on Celtic understanding I would suggest my post below where provide various links.

https://www.facebook.com/hammerandvajra/posts/2866785770233904

Greco-Roman

Hesiod’s Theogony

Much like how the aforementioned Poetic Edda, the Rig Veda, and the biblical Genesis the Theogony gives the birth of the universe, the world, and the creation of the Gods etc. It may have been heavily influenced by Sumerian, Luwian, Hittite, and other creation stories but it correlates easily with many Indo-European faiths.

Theogony at Sacred Texts
https://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/hesiod/theogony.htm

Orphic Hymns

The Orphic religious context, which some referrer to as a mystery cult, is in my opinion an important approach to esoteric thought, embracing life and death, personal ritual, and connection with the divine.

https://www.sacred-texts.com/cla/hoo/index.htm

Writings of Herodotus

Herodotus is often considered the first historian. He is considered
to have lived between 484 and 425 BC. He was a Greek philosopher
who traveled and wrote various things about the peoples he claimed
to visit. He wrote on the Scythians, which is often is considered the
earliest mentioning of them. But much of what he wrote should be
understood as having been written through the lens of Greek
dominance and showed political favor to certain groups and making
others look like barbarians, though one shouldn’t dismiss the fact that
what he wrote is valuable information regarding peoples and cultures
of the past.

Homer’s Works (Iliad and Odyssey)

It is Homer, an ancient Greek, philosopher, and author, that epics
such as the Iliad and the Odyssey are attributed to. These tales are
considered by some to be historical and to others to be fantastical
surround the history of the Greeks and the Trojan war. The quality
and interpretations of these writings vary depending on the translator
or language. The one thing that they represent, for the context of
Indo-European Paganism, is the rituals, culture, and allegories beings
depicted. For this alone, these writings are priceless.

Plato’s The Republic

While this is considered a political book as well as a book on philosophy and ethics, Plato speaks often of praising the Gods, ritual, and how one should conduct one’s life piously.

Persian / Zoroastrian

The Avesta is a collection of Zoroastrian holy texts written in the Avestan language and attributed primarily to Zarathustra himself and is thought to be between 1500 and 600 BC with Zarathustra beingapproximately from 6480 BC. The Avesta consists of the Yasna (primarily focused on ritual) with the five faiths being considered highly important and possibly the oldest and most connected to the Proto-Indo-European/Vedic faith. While the ancient texts are the basis of the Zoroastrian religion and, in a rather similar case to the Bible and Quran, said to be transmitted from God (Ahura Mazda) to Zarathustra, much of the texts have greater connections to IndoEuropean Paganism as a whole. The texts and their contexts must be viewed through the eyes of the culture at the time, and are often mistaken for Monotheism,
despite the fact that they have hymns to different Gods and Spirits (such as Mithra). These beings are called Yazata and align closely with counterparts in the Vedas as well as other Gods within IndoEuropean faiths such as the Slavic, Greek, and Germanic traditions. Reading the Avesta might give the devotee or seeker of knowledge a rather familiar feeling which they may trace to that of Christianity and Islam. However, this is due to the fact that the Persian empire (who was for the most part Zoroastrians) had a strong influence on the region, which continued from ancient times into even both the Greece and Roman Empires. Some Judeo-Christian and Islamic concepts were, for the lack of a better description, lifted completely from Zoroastrian writings and beliefs. For those who read the Avesta for a Vedic Heathen practice
or to seek deeper wisdom and understanding of Indo-European Paganism, they should pay keen attention to the rituals and magics, origin stories, Fire worship, and the reverence to Mithra. This could arguably be one of the first examples of Monism.

https://www.sacred-texts.com/zor/

For modern reading I would recommend the following.
The Good religion, Original Magic, and Mazda way by Stephen flowers.

India / Vedic

There are thousands of Indian texts. Not all of them are Vedic. The more time passes the newer texts are less and less Vedic, at least in my opinion.

With this I would recommend, at least for westerners, primarily the Rig Veda which I feel is the most important as it sets the stage for Indo-European ritual and understanding. After this I would recommend the Upanishads as they delve into a deeper understanding of interconnectivity, the nature of divinity, and what could be described as original monist thought.

Though it may be considered controversial, if case you want to know the difference between Vedic scripture and the broader Hindu scripture. Personally, I only follow Vedic scripture, which I see as more reflective of greater Indo-European faiths. Within this is included the four Vedas. The Rigveda (Praise Hymns Knowledge), the (Sacrificial knowledge), the Samaveda (Song/Hymn Knowledge), and the Atharvaveda (Magical/Ritual Knowledge). It is not that I would ignore the wisdom of the Hindu texts or think lesser of their worship. However, this is where the Vedas are adopted for more culturally relevant to what became the Hindus and less to overarching Indo-European or Proto-Indo European Paganism.

That being said the tales in the The Bhagavad Gita and the Mahābhārata are very good examples of morality, devote spirituality and how to conduct oneself honorably.

Rig Veda translated by Wendy Doniger

At Sacred Texts by Ralph T.H. Griffith, Translator

https://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/rigveda/index.htm

Upanishads translated by Juan Mascaro

https://www.amazon.com/Upanishads-Penguin-Classics/dp/0140441638/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=Juan+Mascaro&qid=1610041190&sr=8-2

At Sacred Texts translated by Max Müller

https://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/sbe01/index.htm

In this part I will give a small list of recommended Authors that I’ll leave up to you to investigate or seek out yourself. I might elaborate on them on future posts.

Philosophy

Plato, Aristotle, Marcus Aurelius, Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, etc.

Much of this could be summarized by looking into the Western Canon. Of course this has become a political issue in the current era, however, most of these works transcended what I would call “modern” politics.

Esotericism
Julius Evola, René-Jean-Marie-Joseph Guénon, Guido Von List, Meister Eckhart, Hermes Trismegistus, various alchemist and Pagan leaning philosophy writers.

Spiritually inspired fiction
J.R.R Tolkien, C.S Lewis, H.P Love Craft, Robert Howard, Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson, Frank Herbert.

Other works
Other works would be studies on Scythian and Tengriism as well as various Buddhist Sutra, Mantra, and Tantra. Many of those deserve their own post and book recommendations which I might do at a later date.

I hope this small foray into what I would consider proper Indo-European philosophy and religious texts helps guide you. I’m not saying that these are the only books that should be read or that there aren’t a controversy or mistakes in any of these books or works by the authors. Instead, what I am implying is that if one is seeking an understanding of “Paganism” “Heathenry” or Indo-European spirituality and they haven’t read any of the primary texts or some of these supporting authors, be the of a Christian time period or not, then they are doing their own journey a disservice.
That being said it is important to cross reference and question your understanding as well as that of others.
Strive for truth and wisdom always.
Hammer and Vajra
Written by Zachary Gill, 19 December 2020.

Image: Library by dj bekas
https://www.artstation.com/artwork/OZGVe

Categories
Indo-European Norse Self-improvement

The Parallels between Zarathustra /Mithraism and Odin (Wotan) under the guise of the Übermensch


Some say to be a man is to be strong, brave, and fearless, have an undaunted resolve, and a decisive stance on all thing. While this may be a good example to strive for even these attributes pale in comparison to the Übermensch. While the Übermensch may be a term coined and heralded by Friedrich Nietzsche, it is in concept something far beyond him. From his writings, it is obvious, at least to me, that he recognized this. Without delving into an exposition of the definition or deeper meaning behind the term Übermensch I will, in my own words, summarize the term thusly: “An Übermensch is the true man. A man that thrives to overcome himself and mankind itself.” Always striving to be better. Always striving to be stronger. Be smarter. Seek Wisdom and Knowledge, both of contemporary sciences, as well as the metaphysical and that of the arcane occult. Seek within oneself and that beyond oneself. Test and challenge oneself. People say “be the best you can be”. This is an inadequate statement as you will never be the best. There will always be someone better. Even if you were to become the “best” in a certain area you should still view yourself as inadequate of the man you could be. The “best” isn’t good enough. Strive to be the Übermensch, the hammer sending blows of never-ending pressure to harden you to be the perfect Vajra (Diamond) of constant impurity in need of improvement. The divine within your blood. Revere the Gods but seek to be like them in the same way as they have put forth the example, be it good or bad, so that we may learn.


The Übermensch isn’t one of selfishness and solidarity. Zarathustra (from Nietzsche) came down from his Mountain where he was one with the God (The Sun, Sol Invictus, the Trinity). He came down to bring his message to the people. However, mankind, satisfied with its comfort, stagnation, and degeneracy rejected him. They are focused on being the Last Man. Always consuming what they are fed, and doing what they are told. Sheep. So Zarathustra changes his goal and preaches to those who are willing and able. Who “follow me because they want to follow themselves – and who want to go where I want to go” (Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra). Where he wants to go is upwards towards the divine, towards ever growing greatness. The hope there would be that these men would not only take up the mantle but would possibly continue the work. And hopefully, reach the rest of mankind, or create a new future as the Last man dies off in its own stagnation.
In the same way, Odin chooses the slain for Valhalla. Yes, it is known that Freya has the first pick, but in many ways, Odin and Frey work together as one, much like the duality of male and female within a Godhead. Therefore only those who are the best, who choose glory and to overcome themselves and the obstacles before they are chosen. While it is commonly said these are those slain in battle, the concept that they are those who have lived like Odin, constantly seeking wisdom, strength, knowledge, and methods to maintain the balance (keeping Ragnarok at bay) has been floating around. As Odin sought such self-improvements, sacrificing himself to himself, constantly seeking to gain more wisdom Though Odin warns us about seeking the amount of Wisdom that he has obtained.
A measure of wisdom | each man shall have,
But never too much let him know;
For the wise man’s heart | is seldom happy,
If wisdom too great he has won.

This is why the path of Odin isn’t for everyone. Only those who are ready and willing should join him. If quick happiness and contentment are what one seeks, then being the Last Man is what they should strive for.

On Mithraism
The actual Zarathustra is, of course, the prophet from the Indo-Iranian religion Zoroastrianism founded during and possibly before the Persian Empire. While I am not a monotheist by any means. There are connections that Zarathustra has with other Indo-European faiths. In particularly Mithraism. The depiction of Zarathustra used by Nietzsche and attributed to him by many artworks is often now considered to be that of Mithras as he is accompanied by the eagle and the snake. It is interesting to note that Mithraism was a widespread cult in the Roman Empire that had made its way nearly throughout Europe. This cult was a male-centered cult, with initiates who were made up primarily of soldiers. The ideals of constant self-improvement are something that should be familiar to one who faces life and death often. It is said that the image of Mithras slaying the bull is that of the turning of time as it is often accompanied by the 12 zodiacs and the zodiac of that era was that of Taurus the bull (this has parallels in other faiths). However, the slaying of the bull is also considered to be the creation of the universe. As the bull in Indo-European faiths is often associated with the cosmic bull such as is represented by the Germanic Auðumbla which the Great progenitor Ymir feeds from before he is slain by the trinity of Odin, Villi, and Ve to create the world. In Zoroastrianism, the term “geush urva” means “the spirit of the cow” and is interpreted as the soul of the earth. Though Ahura Mazda tells Zarathustra to protect the cow. Slaying the cow is more of a metaphoric concept of the creation of the world. Life ends in death and from death comes life. This is to denote the cycle. The Rig Veda also mentions the sacredness of the Cattle. As the middle east was undoubtedly influenced by that of Persian and Indo-European religions the God Ba’al (Worshiped in Canaanite and Babylonian regions), whose is the title for Lord (Who is closely related to Yahweh in many ways and was worshiped on and off by the Hebrews), and the great Kujata (who holds up the world) in Arabic mythology are represented as Cattle.
Note Zoroastrianism is a monotheist, but I choose to see it more in a Monist way. Ahura Mazda is the Zoroastrian God. Ahura is an Avestan word for Lord. The word is related to the Sanskrit word Asura. Also related is the Old Norse word áss is known in popularly in the plural as Aesir (the Gods).
In other words, the idea of the cosmic beginning and creating life from death with a focus constant self-improvement is what the Gods mean for our lives.

Mithras is related to Mitra (Vedic) and Mithra (Avestan). The Vedic deity is known as the eye of or light of the morning sun. In Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Zarathustra refers to the Sun (God) as “thou tranquil eye”. The word Maitreya related to the stem word Mitra. Maitreya is the Buddha who is to come and bring enlightenment to a new era. The concept of the sun returning to bring a new dawn is not only one based on observation of daily life, but one to inspire man. Not for escapism as Christian and modern “western” Buddhism holds dear. This savior isn’t to come and take away all of your strife and problems. Instead, he is the divine within you that you should strive to be. The coming or returning savior is one that is within you. The Übermensch. This is what it means to be like the Gods. This is what God(‘s) have planned for us.
The Vedic Mitra is the deity of Truth and Order. Order is brought from Chaos. Life from Death. The world from slaying the bull. Our future from the strides and ultimate sacrifices of our progenitors. The sun rises, and the sun sets. The seasons pass. Maintaining the balance.
All of these mentioned deities were inspired by the Solar religions of the Indo-Europeans. Sol Invictus was deemed by the Roman emperor to be the embodiment of these Gods and the official cult of the Roman Empire. The Unconquered Sun. Worshiped by soldiers. Mithras was worshipped in a Mystery cult in order for this to be understood among those ready to follow. Much like those who worship Odin must understand the challenges ahead of them as his path is a to seek the answers to mysteries.
In order to understand these mysteries, conquer the Last Man within, we must Slay the Bull and use its divine resources to create a new in ourselves.


I advocate a return to Mithraism in cult form. For men to strive to be better men. Stronger men. Wiser men. Well educated men. Men who challenge each other as they challenge themselves. In hopes for a better world, they put themselves through trails and challenge the world around them. Who look to Sol Invictus was the path to glory. Who embrace the Gods, (Aesir, Vanir, Devas, Asura, Ahura, Greco-Roman Deities etc) as those Gods of European men, of the Ancient Indo-European /Aryanian peoples. Of the original Danube and Mesopotamian peoples. Are all within us. They are many. And they are One. We are many but we are individuals. Let us challenge ourselves as men to become the Übermensch.

May you always be improving yourself and inspiring those around you.
Hammer and Vajra!
— Zach Gill

Illustration of Odin is by Lorenz Frølich 1895
Illustration of Zarathustra: Photo is extracted from “Persia by a Persian: being personal experiences, manners, customs, habits, religious and social life in Persia”. Author: Isaac Adams. Published by: E. Stock, 1906. – NY Public Library

Categories
Indo-European

“Pagan” possible linguistic origins

Everyone seems to want to use the word “Pagan”. It seems like it is some sort of catch all for people. Especially those of degenerate life styles and lack of morals who want to live in unnatural and ignoble ways (Adharmic if you will) and stick it to the “Abrahamics” while doing so. So here is a clear definition on what the word “Pagan” means. Originally where the word Pagan was used in the bible the word Ethnikos was used. Meaning those of the Ethnic faith. Also frequently the word Gentile is used to mean non-Jewish or a Christian who isn’t Jewish but isn’t Pagan. This word too began to take on the meaning similar to Pagan. Gentile (from Latin gentilis (“of or belonging to the same people or nation”), from gēns (“clan; tribe; people, family”) is similar to the root word we use for Genes. Which would imply folk or family. “Recorded in English since about 1375. Borrowed from Latin pāgānus (“rural, rustic”), later “civilian”. The meaning “not (Judeo-)Christian” arose in Vulgar Latin, probably from the 4th century. It is unclear whether this usage is derived primarily from the “rustic” or from the “civilian” meaning,
In Old Persian in pre-Zoroastrian Iran, the word “bagh [بغ]” (pl. “baghan”) meaning “god”, “creator” or “the greater” was used to refer to the gods especially Mithra. The practice of worshiping “baghan” is “baghani” religion [بغانی]. The word has entered Old Slavic Languages [“Бог” in Russian means “god”] and Latin through the practice of Mithraism, a mystery religion worshiping Mithras (Mitra) known as an early rival of Christianity. —Wikipedia”. This would imply people of Indo-European faith or people of the European rural faiths. Many people who claim the umbrella term “Pagan” people are not properly following the European Folk or family traditions or morals as they should. So they are not “Pagan”.
Paganism will always be centered around folk and family.
–Hammer and Vajra