...nothing makes me feel so content with the correctness of my
decision to stick to *established* and "thew-centered" folk -- as
opposed to "seekers" -- than to come to this list and find *three*
replies back to back showing not only that I'm not alone, but that
the value of law/thews/standards are see for what they are: the
bedrock of our Folkway!
> Law is a non-removable aspect of a tribe, folk, or whatever other
form of folk-social-embodiment...it is integrally interwoven within every
fabric of that folk, and truly makes up the what you might say 'non-
tangible' ...or spiritual, or whatever: within law you find the totality of
thew (thau), religion/religious systems...ethics, etc...
The law is the context in which we live.
Consider, not only from a "personal conduct" standpoint, but from
a more ethereal, spiritual standpoint:
...the folk of Asgardh live within a set of laws, both spiritual *and*
physical. They shape shift, becoming eagles and fishes within the
limits of their invoking of these shapes, so our Lore tells us. They
fly across the sky, chased by wolves. Furthermore, they can walk
between worlds. We of Midgardh cannot. That is "against the
law" in our sphere of the physical and spiritual. Still, the
Aesir and Vanir and a host of named and unnamed wights *as well as* agents
of loss and chaos feel drawn to this one of the Nine Worlds. They
behave, so our Lore says, according to *our* laws while here.
That is because law CREATES context.
Now, the example cited may to some simply be a discussion of abstracts, not
taking into account the archetypal nature of our Lore, etc., that we
understand more of the Multiverse now than did 9th Century Norsemen, 5th
Century Goths or more ancient Scythians, Tocharians and proto-Germans.
We need fewer "fables" to explain the setting of the sun, the
turning of the Earth, etc.
But, that doesn't explain why the Lore, indeed the Gods, still resonate
within us. Maybe the Lore *is* archetypal...but, that doesn't mean
that the lessons of law are not there still to be learned!
We are who we are because of where and how and how faithfully we give our
word, how well we commit to our Gods and to our laws and traditions. A
2nd Century Cherusci or Marsii tribesman had fewer options -- he couldn't
wear his hat backwards, wrap his pasty butt in FUBU "gear", listen
to Eminem, and try to be a "brother", as an example -- but he
*could* go out-of-law with his tribe -- with, in fact, his family, their
ancestors, and his entire world, in essence -- by becoming an agent of
Rome or some other foreign influence...taking on *their* laws, traditions
and customs. Then, he would no longer be a Cherusci...he'd not really
be a Roman.
He'd be nothing. There's a lot of that about.
> I'm sure today's lack of understanding is completely in the genre of
mainstream conception, but with Heathenry (speaking for we Northern
Americans) has been around for the last 3 decades, and it isn't saying much
that most of the Heathen groups out there are still stuck in the first
decade of development, or so it would seem from the STILL apparent lack of
true understanding of this (along with other key points as well)...
When one begins to talk of the law, one begins to hear of the failures of
some organizations (generally in the eyes of the speaker) falling into some
"cult of personality" regarding their leader. These same
people, therefore, hold themselves aloof from any law *but* that of their
own devising, and so *create themselves as outlaws*!
After all, if you're not in the Innangardh, you're a foreigner.
I don't mind an organization having a strong leader. That leader'll
soon find, once I or any of the folk here (I'd bet) come into contact with
the organization or tribe, that they'll still have their laurels, but scant
little time to rest upon them. Leaders *earn* their position, and must
do so *daily*. That, or *someone* more in touch with the aspirations
of the folk will rise up and supplant him or her.
But, one thing we *need* to un-learn is the phenomenon of having just such a
leadership squabble while *still* protecting the Folk, keeping the
organization or tribe together for the greater good. In short, we need
to relearn how to put ourselves within the law, working for the common good.
We've been force-fed the sexiness of "going alone", of being the
cowboy, the mountain man, the rugged individualist. Mountain men, in
fact, really weren't Indians, and were scarcely "white men" after
a while. In short, they weren't anything. They outlawed
We need less of this "sexy" ruggedness and a bit more cooperation
for the common good, with Northvegr getting respect from Irminsmenn (which
I'd wager would not be hard to do), while Alliance asatruar receiving
support from both, etc...within the commonly agree-upon law.
This is something which serious heathens need to discuss