Again in respost to a wonderful article by Cara: The Missing Call for Divine Justice
Cara, thank you so much for writing this. I left a comment on your other article in similar vein. I agree with you, too much do I see people in the pagan/heathen community seeking the peace and understanding above the other aspects of our ancient ways. Too much of the Christian do I see in the Pagans of this day.
Though on occasion I see people speak about the ancient attitudes, I rarely see them practiced. I realize there is a reason for this, because in the past there was much anti-pagan sentiment and frankly embracing the "darker" side of Paganism wouldn't have helped us become accepted in mainstream society. Yet it seems this early realization has been lost and most of those today seem to adhere to the "Noble Savage" idea of ancient paganism, where it's all about honor and hospitality. They embrace the "noble" but seem to have forgotten the "savage."
Paganism/heathenism is, in a way, very savage. It is Primal, the essence of the Animal as much as it is the Man. It is emotion and reason fused into a single entity. It is the ancient world, with its savage beasts and darkness and violence, as much as it is the ages of reason and enlightenment. It is Sparta, as much as it is Athens. It is Germanic, as much as it is Rome.
For Asatru, Odin is both a god of wisdom and war. Few today would feel that those two things have anything in common. War is seen as foolish and needless, a waste of time and people. Wisdom is seen as a thing of utmost value, to be embraced at all times. Yet, Odin is both, because our "modern" view of war is one that I think is very misinformed (though understandable for reasons beyond the scope of this comment).
In Wicca, there is the Green Man, the masculine spirit of the world. He is a father, loving provider to his children. But he is also a monster, the sounds of the dark forest at midnight, when all manner of beast and spirit wander just out of sight, ready to rend and tear and kill.
I've come to wonder if, in response to the supposedly "patriarchal" nature of Monotheism, that Paganism went to far in the other direction. If, in re-embracing the feminine, the masculine came to be undesirable. I know in many parts of Wicca, and other Pagan traditions as well, men are placed in positions lower than women. Places where, instead of the male priest/leader standing in equal measure with the female priestess/leader, he must stand subservient to her. I see a pattern in modern paganism of viewing traditionally masculine virtues as things to be avoided. Power, rage, violence, and many others are viewed as terrible things that should be avoided at all costs, when in the ancient pagan world they were viewed as noble emotions and energies of the same value as acceptance, love, and peace. I think this is something we pagans/heathens need to examine in ourselves.
Just how much of the Monotheist do we have in ourselves, with its insistence on pacifism, tolerance, concession, and acceptance.
Just as we are reawakening the ancient gods and goddesses of fertility, love, reason, and art, so too must we reawaken the gods and goddesses of war. We must remember that Thor's hammer brought more than thunder, it slew giants. We must remember that while the Athenians hated Aries, the Spartans loved him and the Romans viewed Mars as one of their greatest and strongest deities. WE must remember that Odin and Freyja were as well loved for being god and goddess of warriors as they were for wisdom or fertility.
So I say these final words, in response for Cara's call, though I know many will come to despise me for them.
I call upon Aries, God of War, to turn his weapons upon those who would see us dead!
I call upon Thor, to bring Mighty Mjolnir down upon their God!
I call upon Odin, to cast his mighty spear to slay those responsible for the deaths on that dread day of 9/11!
I call upon all the Gods and Goddesses, from Scandinavia to Egypt, from Ireland to Greece and beyond! I call upon them to rise once more in war and bring vengeance and justice on those who terrorists who kill in the name of Allah!
And I say unto that Allah, that should he not wished to be judged as condoning those who abuse his name, if they are truly not of his religion and betray his teachings, that he smite them as well. For otherwise I shall judge him complicit in their actions and in equal measure of bearing their guilt, from now until Ragnarok and beyond!