Let me tell you something. Man was meant to dream. There is something sinister about the cultural cynicism and scepticism which has been sublimated and absorbed by the peoples of the world, pointedly, by the People of the West.
More than that, there is something dreadfully wrong with the calm acceptance with which cynicism, being the death of innocence, is endured. There is the idea that dreams are the purview of children. They are, and as surely as Baldur brought joy to the Elder Gods, so too does every man contain the memories of youth. What, pray tell, is wrong with this?
A marked difference between the men of yesteryear who men in my camp admire and those less than sterling role models is that our ancient men were sustained ideologically by the dreams they had. For a long time there was no vast system which robbed them of dreams before they could be concocted in their minds. When the seafarers and voyagers of our kind set their minds on the farthest points of the horizon and defied logic and claimed there indeed *was * a beyond, they were undeterred by the naysayers. The Vikings forged a doomed colony in Vinland, and if their only lasting impact was that I got to see their Runestones in a museum and feel the Gokstad penny in my hands, than theirs was still an incredible journey.
We modern men think ourselves so clever, with our learned science and our granted assumptions. Our sages of the secular faith have seen the ends of the universe from the comfort of somebody else’s home. They have already determined the date and manner in which it began and ended. Surely, these prophets are to be revered and reviled, as were the holy men of old. Science has solved the riddles of human existence. We have reached the end of the line, it seems.
Science and progress have brought us to a synthesis. Science has become a social construct, and it has lent its mighty hand to the foundation of globalism. Globalism has tied all the world together, every culture, thrown into the blender and rendered by the stainless steel blades into a fine gruel for discerning economists to gobble greedily up, shitting out piles of mediocre minds and entertainment for idiots. We are the oneracehumanrace, who knows unity through diversity, diversity being the absolute state of monotony described by pillars of etiquette found in every corner of the Media.
You walk among the rows of bleary eyed individuals who fear eye contact. You listen to the insipid, small brained small talk; you watch them slither back to their cars. There are entire days conducted in silence, man disconnected from man, man alone in the sea of strangers. We shall live to see a day where entire lives are lived in pointless, abject soliloquies conducted before a monitor. As it is, I see an endless array of soulless strumpets pushing a stroller with half a hand as they attend some meaningless text or website from the screens of a cell phone which is probably giving them cancer. When cancer comes, they shrug and then they die and what else can be said of them? What did they do that we should remember their good name after cattle and kinsmen die?
Enlightenment. Progress. Modernity. We have been saved by the savage, cruel and unevolved tendencies of our ancestry. The kind of witchcraft that gave us art, history and philosophy. We have been shown, by sciences of modern convenience, that the old world is best forgotten. With all of its questions of inherent, rather than fluid identity, it has all been left behind. All has been made new, and modern. Whatever magic it was that made the ancient world run, has all been revealed.
The irony is, however, that in these increasingly, insufferably modern times… magic is precisely what the people crave. History and myth cast a spell that no servant of science can ever hope to quash. Increasingly, people turn away from all that smacks of reality. They lose themselves in videogames, in movies. Books, for some, I suppose. They lose themselves. Why? There is no magic left in the modern world, so goes the common wisdom – which is a lie. The opinion of society is that there can be magic, but only the kind that makes the consumer engines churn. So, perhaps, it is best to stick with what is real. “Real.”
Yes. Magic is a dirty word. It is used by simpletons. By edgy idiots who want to rock the boat. Yet. I know something many modern minds have forgotten. This, all of this, was prophesied long ago, and by many sages and shamans so far removed that they can be considered isolated incidents. When Väinämöinen sailed away after the coming of the Great Birth, he promised an eventual return. It came, perhaps, in the form of Nietzsche, whom you would know, once preached the Eternal Return. Yet, Nietzsche was not the end of his line. Väinämöinen knew what would be lost, and Nietzsche came to understand what had been lost. It remains to us to know what is lost. But what is lost can oft be regained, if only one might look.
Among our people, the debate rages, what might save us? Might science save us from simple superstition? Might religion save us from the burdens of nihilism? We must do the footwork, and we must expand our thinking. Science, while damnably corrupt in the modern world, is no more our enemy than the ghost of God in Nietzsche’s diary. We all know it. But magic? What a contemptible suggestion! What an insult to the big brain of the modern nibba!
So if modern science has failed and so has religion, ancient tradition and all the rest… what else is there? Let me ask you something. What have you got to lose by looking on the other side of the fence? I want you to know what I know. I want you to feel what I feel. I want you to understand something, what it means to be a Pagan, to be a Heathen.
The Gods are fine and dandy. But the Earth comes first. The Heavens come second. Go out into your lawn, your garden, plunge your fists into the dirt. It isn’t just dirt. An old Bavarian chastised me with the utmost fervour for calling my homeland ‘dirt.’ She should have known, shouldn’t she? And I? I know this: when my fingers coil around the stone beneath the soil, when the moisture charges up and the hairs on my arms stand up straight… I feel that soil in my blood. Blood and soil. This is a feeling our ancestors felt as they toiled upon the face of the earth. When I walk through the woods and I feel the wind moving, the primitive brain reminds me that it might be an ancient spirit moving through the shadows. When I see the sun, not with my eyes of flesh, but with my senses, devoid of critical care, I am overawed. I see shapes in the clouds. In the fall, the bare bones of the treeline form a chorus of skeletal hands reaching for God. Throw yourself into a spring, barrel through the fields. I want you to feel your muscles burn and work. When you have sex with your wife, press her temples between your palms and feel her beating heart – you are one flesh, your children will bear you testament to this.
That, my friend, is magic. It is a feeling. It is a sensation. Enthusiasm is a word which originally referred to being possessed by a living god. It’s inescapable, our divine past is. The framework of our reality is meshed in it. If you want to escape it, you had better develop a language, rewrite history and tweak a few other things of monumental rapport. The fact is, man is a religious animal, and he seeks consolation in devotion. Devoted modernists are still religious, they religiously object to the premise they are religious, devoted to proving wrong a point they aren’t sure has been made.
I want you to thrill. Discover something, feel. I want you to look up in the sky and FEEL that you are a part of that heaven. Every cell in your body is charged with the same starlight you gaze upon us. In this beautiful creation, sometimes you need to feel. Sometimes thinking too much can poison your mind and rot your soul. I would know. Don’t think I don’t understand what it means to doubt, to fear. I know belief, I know unbelief, I feel them – both – every day.
Then I want you to tell me about science. Because I am no savage, I have read wisdom from the sciences. You could spend a lifetime hunched over your books – scientific or religious, and walk away the same man. Religion saves nothing from cynicism. Nor does science. There are believers who make science, and religious people who are atheists. There is only a shade between. Everything else is a lie, a kind word on a pillow top we speak to console ourselves of loathing. The only difference that’s made is a question of being. You are a believer, or you aren’t. But what you feel? That can be measured.
I want you to overcome an obstacle, pound your chest, growl and roar like an animal. Crush something with your hands. Not because you lost control, but because you found it. I want you to use your wits and create. I want you to be what we were made to be. When we align ourselves with our natural, genetic destiny, our place becomes clearer.
Those ancestors you keep telling me about, they walked this earth. They smelt the wet grass, they breathed the dry dust. They saw suns rise and set, moons come and go. They saw stars shine; they saw empires crumple into sin. They dipped their hands into cool water and drank, not because they didn’t have water at home, but to see if new water tasted better than old. Like the distance between believer and unbeliever, there is only a shade between ancestor and descendent. You want to tell me you are a shadow of your ancestral glory, go outside and see what they saw, feel what they felt. There is only a shade between.
But what’s the point if none of it is real?
Who’s to say what is real? The shamans were the mighty men of science in their day. Medicine men, witch doctors, druids, Vitkar, Gothar. Ah, yes, yes, science tells us they were laced with primitive superstition. Yet, their superstitions were good enough to carry us here. So use science, what it can do, but put it back in its place. Today’s scientists, those lofty prophets, are tomorrow’s fools. And yet, *some* of their science is good enough to get us there. I think, between us, we can defer a dream for the sake of science that works.
I have not yet spoken of Gods. I have dedicated a book to one which I hope to have finished editing before long. So. I won’t repeat myself here. But know this: the myths of our ancestors were not the simple fables we have made them out to be. I myself could care less whether you believe or not. But what you must understand is what Nietzsche already prophesied, “the newspapers of today shall become the myths of tomorrow.” But I humbly suggest that open living a little, your perspective of Gods might change, for I find that many who suffer unbelief suffer from a lack of feeling, not an overabundance of knowing.
Share a care. Open your mind. Destiny is real; it was the first of all the Sciences. Man, born of Woman, is doomed to die. Fated to live. Doomed to choose, and damned if he doesn’t. Destiny has had three faces, a woman to doll out the thread of fate, another to spin, and a final to cut. Call them Nornir, call them Moirai, call them Percae. You may call them jokes, antiquated throwbacks. But consider. What is, was, and still shall be. These were their questions, the Fates were time embodied. They were three, acting as one, the first trinities. There is no time like the present, for there is no time. It is all in the purview of creation and destruction, everything between is a cycling of the two. Our ancestors knew this; they prophesied it in their legends.
You tell me this make us fatalists. I tell you it makes us realists. There needn’t be any tragedy in admitting observation. Does the fact that we will die make the beauties of life any less real? Does the question of the Gods and their reality change that beauty? It does. It only changes the answer, is life beautiful by happenstance or design? I can’t answer that. Not with science, no. In this, science overreaches itself. Philosophy had answers, inasmuch as answers wile away the time. Are they any truer? That is for you to answer. Those that hide behind the sceptic’s veil very often fail at the basest of investigations, and they wear their little fedoras more as a fashion statement than a token of their intellect.
Creation and destruction are illusions. I argue the myths foretold this, for in every instance, creation only rearranged what was there, and destruction scattered what was gathered. Was anything truly lost? The elemental forces remained. At the end of the day, does science sing a different song? Fire and ice clash to create Ginunngagap, polar opposites clash with chemical and atomic reaction and form molecular extravagance. Gods took base material and shaped increasingly complex beings from them? Indeed they did.
I know there is more to life than flesh. I know my ancestors live in me, I know should there be Gods who grant blessings, that I shall live in my children, and they shall have given me new life. Every ache in my very mortal bones tells me there is something with my life that I must do, and that I may not know rest until it is done. There is perhaps no scientific grounding for this. I don’t need the consolation of science. I know the atoms and molecules that make me, have previously made something else; they will make something else again. What is this I, this casque of a man I wear? A transient thing I’ll throw away at last.
My own Ragnarok shall take me; I will go the way of my ancestors. For cattle die, and so do kinsman. I have watched animals die, and men, they die the same way – I have seen this too. I have rested coins over eyelids for the Cheiron, I have prayed in the dark for souls to see a pleasant light. I have prayed for signs, prayed for this, prayed for that. I know a secret which I have learned. The point of Ragnarok is this: it illustrates that a man may live with ultimate dignity if he so chooses it in the face of ultimate adversity.
To that end, even in times of unbelief, I shall not lose sight of the Gods that have shaped my life. Those Runes I have learned, they give me comfort, unlike a rod and a staff, when I walk through the shadow of the valley of death, I remember that my fate was sealed. It is not grim, it is a happy truth. For in my hands is the power to choose what to do with the life I have been given.
I choose life. I choose to better myself. I choose to follow the Light as I have seen it, I pray it shines like Baldur’s light, brighter than kind Hermes,’ and that I shall transform myself – from this base creature I am into a man worthy of emulating, being more, becoming more than I am is what I was meant to be. As were you. I live and breathe, I feel, and I know. Contradictions be damned. Our ancestors, did they struggle so? Not in the way we do. The battle for identity and relevance was not a struggle they would recognise like we do. Theirs was for survival of the flesh, ours is for survival of the soul. The modern world has made us flat. I choose a dimensional life. You say either/or, I say and/or. This idea that we must choose as we do, between this and that, faith and science, between optimism and cynicism… is a farce. Our ancestors wrapped them all up with a bow. Light and darkness, sin and glory, beauty and terror… could be found in the same kingdoms. People think this marks us out for conspiracy. No. Our ancestors realised nothing was ever merely two dimensional, something we geniuses of today have trouble grasping. I am alive, and I am dead – all the time my body is recycling itself, parts of me are in flux. I am mean and I am kind, I am happy, I am sad. If a man can expect such variance, why not afford life the same distinction? Share a care, nothing is simple.
And if you should have to learn this lesson twice, thrice, a dozen times over – so be it. This is life, it is destiny. Ours is not a closed book, nor a chiselled stone. This is what separates us from the children of the Talmud, destiny is a stream, sometimes calm, sometimes quick, sometimes we sink, other times we float. Birth and death, they never meant as much as the space between where Destiny is understood. I know that I have had to teach myself this lesson many times, and every time I do, the lesson is just as poignant. Life is a vibrant teacher, if you listen.
I have been called foolish, my beliefs are pseudoscience. This does not hurt me. My eyes are bright, my mind is clear. I have nothing to prove. Can you make the same claim? I would like you to, but don’t bother to make it before you can be sure. Otherwise you might be living another lie supplied by the way it is. I don’t want that, do you?