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The two most prominent peoples of Europe, the Celts and the Germans, are remarkably similar.  While their unique cultures and distinctive histories certainly must be acknowledged and respected, their fundamental unity demands our attention.  According to highly respected scholar Hilda Davidson, author of Myths and Symbols in Pagan Europe, we can speak of a common indigenous European religion, of which the Germanic and Celtic religions were (and are) specific manifestations.

The Europeans still owe eighty-five to ninety percent of their genetic makeup to the earliest hunter-gatherers to inhabit the area.  In that sense, Europe is one.  The fact that many of us share both Celtic and Germanic heritages may indeed make us "general northern European," but that is hardly the same as saying we are "Heinz 57" or, worse yet, "mutts."  Europeans must not allow themselves to be divided by superficial differences when their similarities are so much more important.

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  • Steven Robinson

    Good words, and true.

    My family started being “American” in 1628, the Lands of Mother Europe holds many more Bones…

    Aug 5, 2010 at 9:52 pm
  • =N=

    I do believe that our Germanic Gods are separate from the Celtic ones. But all of native Europeans absolutely should look at and treat each other, as close members of their bigger European family.

    Aug 6, 2010 at 2:59 am
  • Norse Alchemist

    A brilliant podcast! I will have to find this book, for sure. It is nice to know that I am of a single heritage with my Celtic/Germanic roots. Keep up the good work. Hail to the Gods and Goddesses!

    Aug 6, 2010 at 10:08 am
  • asatrurising

    “I do believe that our Germanic Gods are separate from the Celtic ones. But all of native Europeans absolutely should look at and treat each other, as close members of their bigger European family.”

    =N=, in practice, this is exactly what I believe. I did not mean to imply that the deities were not distinct.

    -Steve

    Aug 6, 2010 at 10:01 pm
  • Steve

    Great podcast, always have time to hear what you have to say Steve.

    Interesting point towards the end. Does nationalism go against Asatru as an organising principle or source of identity in your view Steve? Or do they just need to learn to live as equals as it were.

    thanks,

    Steve

    Aug 11, 2010 at 1:20 pm
  • John McNeill

    A fascinating podcast! I’m of European heritage, and even though I’m Christian, I’m interested in learning more about Asatru. For one thing, I’m really impressed with the AFA for having found a way to celebrate European heritage and seeking to preserve it in a positive, constructive manner. Too many who seek to prevent European extinction turns towards the dark side, hurling racial epithets, conspiracy theories, and promoting an atmosphere of negativity. For those reason I hope that the AFA continues to grow in influence so it can set an example for Euro-American nationalists, and show them that there’s an alternative to mindless soul-destroying hatred.

    I have a few questions.

    Why does the Asatru community favor the Germanic variety of the native European religion over the Celtic? Is it because the Germanic culture was the root culture of Europeans? Or it because the Norse version is more well documented than the Celtic version?

    Is there a Celtic neopagan movement that shares the same “folkish” perspective as the AFA? Or is every major Celtic group universalist?

    Are there any local AFA gatherings in Iowa? If so, can a non-heathen attend so long as he promises to behave and not proselytize? ;)

    Aug 14, 2010 at 12:29 pm
  • SteveG

    Great podcast! I have to know: whose music is used to open/close the podcast? I must have it if it’s for sale.

    Aug 24, 2010 at 9:22 am
  • asatrurising

    John, we definitely want to keep it positive, without sacrificing forcefulness…”assertive” rather than “aggressive,” as some would say. It is better to be generous and open-handed so long at this does not put us and ours at risk.

    We favor the Germanic variety of native European religion because (1) we know more about the Germanic beliefs - better documentation and (2) Wotan/Odin (think of this as an archetype if the existence of an actual deity is too problematic) is very strong in this era. The potential power of Asatru to act in the world is stronger than any comparable system.

    I do not know of any Celtic religious reconstruction that is folkish.

    Steve

    Aug 24, 2010 at 8:57 pm
  • asatrurising

    SteveG, the music we use is from an excellent local band named Lasher Keen - lasherkeen.net. They are friends of ours and have graciously allowed us to use their work for this purpose.

    Steve

    Aug 24, 2010 at 9:00 pm
  • ur face

    “Europeans must not allow themselves to be divided by superficial differences when their similarities are so much more important.”

    How about:

    “People” must not allow themselves to be divided by superficial differences when their similarities are so much more important.

    Mar 2, 2011 at 7:16 am
  • asatrurising

    uf face: Well, sure, in general. But my focus here is on MY people, not “people” at large. I am of Europe, and my first love is the people of Europe. Kin come first.

    Steve McNallen

    Mar 2, 2011 at 6:52 pm