What is Heathenry?
Heathen is a word derived from the word heather, in which heathen means people of the heather, or people of the land. When Christianity invaded and thousands of years later..the word became twisted into meaning "the godless people" (or "God-less"). Heathens are anything but godless, as heathens are hard polytheists with numerous Gods and Goddesses. Heathens just do not believe in the Christian God because God and the religions themselves defies everything it is to be heathen.
Asatru is an Old Norse word meaning "true to the Asa(Norse Gods/Goddesses, also called the Aesir, collectively). There are many national organizations of Asatru, Asatru Folk Assembly (AFA), The Troth and Asatru Alliance. You don't always have to be a part of a group or an organization, there are many Heathens who choose to be Independents. Alaska Heathenry is here to help you connect and find other like-minded folks like yourself and you have choices to either be independents and thrive in your own inner circle/tribe/kindred or start your own group. If you're seeking an Alaskan Asatru organization, please check out the Alaska chapter of the AFA. Contact us, we'll gladly help.
Heathens and asatruars both practice and/or live the older ways of the Norse, Germanics, Icelandic, and Scandinavians which is inspired by the Poetic and Prose Eddas, and the many Sagas and archealogical accounts throughout history. Its the old ways our ancestors practiced before the Christians took over and twisted our lore and celebrations into the modern practices of consumerism. Heathens are reconnected to nature and more inclined to stay by themselves or within their own kindreds and like-minded people. Some follow a code of ethics, guided by the Havamal and the Sagas themselves. There is a strong belief among heathens and asatruars in doing right for it's own sake and not for rewards or praises. We believe in being the best humans we can possibly be to honor our ancestors and Gods, for it weren't for them.. we would not be here. There is strong beliefs in the Norns, wights, landvaettirs, Matrons/Disirs, and the Giants as well.
Heathens and asatruar's alike wear the symbol of Thor's Hammer, a rune or bindrune, and sometimes a tree symbolizing the Tree of Yggdrasil.
If you're interested in reading materials about heathenry, read the list below for some good titles to check out.
Poetic Edda - Henry Adam Bellows or Lee M. Hollander translations
Prose Edda - Arthur Brodeur or Anthony Faulkes translations
Icelandic and Germanic Sagas - Various translations can be found
Norse Mythology - John Lindow
Myths of the Norsemen - H.A. Guerber
The Culture of the Teutons - Vilhelm Grönbech and Mark Ludwig Stinson
Teutonic Mythology - Jacob Grimm (Various translations)
Teutonic Religion - Kveldulf Gundarsson
And if you want free online reading material, feel free to check out Völuspá.org website.
If you're interested in runes, check out Freya Aswynn, Edred Thorsson, and Doc Warner.
Feel like something is missing here? Feel free to contact us.