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A Short and Concise Introduction to Ásatrú [View All]

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icymist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-22-11 05:31 PM
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A Short and Concise Introduction to Ásatrú
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A Short History of Ásatrú

Heathenry or Ásatrú (pronounced OW-suh-troo) is a modern name given to a living ethnic religion which embraces the indigenous polytheistic spiritual beliefs and sacred cultural formations of Pre-Christian Northern Europe. The first historical Heathens didn't have their ultimate origin in Northern Europe, but were parts of the great Indo-European family of cultures which all began somewhere in the steppes and river valleys of the Eurasian continent, north of the Black Sea.

That family of people would eventually migrate away and settle in ancient Europe, Iran, and India. Once long ago, these dynamic and world-affecting people all embraced similar Gods and sacred cultural institutions. Over time, cultural differentiation, migration, and diffusion of the Indo-Europeans led to the formation of groups recognizable as "Germanic" or "Teutonic" and "Celtic", as well as Roman, Greek, Slavic and many others. Ásatrú, as a term, is from the Old Norse and Icelandic languages, and it means "Belief in the Gods". The real seeds and root-impulses of Ásatrú go back as far as the Bronze age, as the symbolism and mythology of the religion reveals.

Ásatrú today refers firstly to the survival and revival of the belief in the Gods of the Indo-European peoples of Northern Europe. Secondly, it refers to the modern life-ways engaged by people today that draw their form and inspiration from what we know the ancient pre-Christian Northern peoples were doing religiously and how they lived, under the guidance of their cultural beliefs, institutions, and sacred stories.
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