Gnosis Diary: Life as a Heathen

My personal experiences, including religious and spiritual experiences, community interaction, general heathenry, and modern life on my heathen path, which is Asatru.

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USA Lawmaker Attacks Heathen Religious Symbol

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

In a video on MSN, an "expert" identifies the Valknut as "a symbol used by white supremacists" which AOC then repeats. The symbol is hard to see in the video but it is verbally identified as a Valknut. The video does not say anything about the man with the Valknut, it says the symbol itself is a white supremacist symbol.  

video link here:  

The Valknut is a religious symbol. Religious symbols such as the Christian Cross are sometimes used by hate groups. For example, the KKK uses the Christian Cross. If you would not identify the Cross as "a hate symbol" because of that, then you should not identify the religious symbols of any other religions that way either. Stop religious discrimination. Support freedom of religion.

A non-discriminatory statement would have looked something like this: "The Valknut is a religious symbol used by members of the Heathen religions and as such is protected under the First Amendment to the Constitution. We have no information about the model wearing it in the ad, nor the ad agency that made the ad. Like the Christian Cross and other religious symbols, it is sometimes used by hate groups, so we need more information." 

That, of course, is not what they said in the video. 

A Congress member should not be attacking any religion. The laws Congress makes must be legal under the federal government's governing document, the Constitution, which includes the Bill of Rights. The First Amendment in the Bill of Rights clearly states the federal government must not use its power to oppress any religion. It is troubling that we have to keep fighting for this civil right. Any time any religion's symbols are attacked in this way, by a lawmaking authority, it's an attack on the religion itself and peoples' right to practice their religion. 

Next time there is a call for an expert on Heathen religious symbols, call upon an actual Heathen. Heathenry is a group of related religious sects including Asatru, Forn Sed, Forn Sidr, and so on. 

For more info on the Valknut and other Heathen symbols, read my article Heathen Vs. Hate, a guide to how to tell the difference between heathen symbols and hate symbols, published in Witches & Pagans Magazine #38. 

Image: a Valknut made of silk ribbon, artwork by Erin Lale, photo by Erin Lale

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Erin Lale is the author of Asatru For Beginners, and the updated, longer version of her book, Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path. Erin has been a gythia since 1989. She was the editor and publisher of Berserkrgangr Magazine, and is admin/ owner of the Asatru Facebook Forum. She also writes science fiction and poetry, ran for public office, is a dyer and fiber artist, was acquisitions editor at a small press, and founded the Heathen Visibility Project.


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