Author Topic: Yngona Desmond  (Read 40616 times)

Offline Barnaby_McEwan

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #15 on: June 04, 2008, 04:58:43 pm »
I checked with the Southen Poverty Law Center. They are not on any active hate group or Neo-Nazi lists. So they are just to themselves right now.   http://www.splcenter.org/intel/map/hate.jsp#s=GA           http://www.splcenter.org/intel/map/type.jsp?DT=9

I don't think these particular kooks actively proselytise hatred, nor are they seen in brown uniforms, but that doesn't mean they're not repulsive racists. You could argue that any of these not-quite-Hitler-worshipping groups are neo-nazis due to the historical influence of the American Nazi Party on the entire white-supremacist scene. I noticed a racist skinhead group called 'Vinlanders Georgia' on one of the links above: more evidence of the use to which that word is put by white supremacists.

In 2006 Desmond publicly affiliated herself to some rather troubling neopagan groups: the Asatru Folk Assembly, the Odinic Rite, and the Heathen Front.

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As a Folkish Heiðinn I must support and contribute to those organizations that I feel whole-heartedly promote my ethnic Folkfaith. I do not feel – at the present time – the Troth is doing this. I will continue to support those organizations that seek to enrich and ensure the continuity of Heiðindómr’s rich ethnic Folkfaith – either through financial contribution, membership or verbal endorsement. These organizations are: the Asatru Alliance, the Asatru Folk Assembly, the Odinic Rite and the Allgermanische Heidnische Front.

The last one is known as the Heathen Front in the US, and is now defunct. These groups don't consider themselves racist, because they narrowly define racism as involving hatred, rather than discrimination. It's hard to square this with the actions of Kristian 'Varg' Vikernes, the Norwegian Heathen Front's founder, who is serving time for murder and church-burning.

The Odinic Rite is listed as a white-supremacist group in this 2006 overview of US white-supremacism. Texas prison authorities have banned its rising prisoner membership from access to runes, which prompted predictable, hypocritical whining about 'religious and racial discrimination'. The Odinic Rite's leader collaborates with an 'apocalyptic folk' band called Sol Invictus - another bunch of kooks who, while continually claiming not have anything to to with the extreme right, seem unable to avoid loading their music and imagery with fascist themes.

Stephen McNallen, boss of the Asatru Folk Assembly, writes anti-immigrant drivel like the following, in an article claiming that Native deities are trying to take over California and the American southwest by sending brown-skinned invaders:

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If California and the American Southwest are to be cultural battlegrounds, who better to lead the European-American counterattack against Tonatzin and Tezcatlipoca than our own Gods of the North.

That article has been reproduced on many white-supremacist sites. McNallen also writes:

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One of the most controversial tenets of Asatru is our insistence that ancestry matters- that there are spiritual and metaphysical implications to heredity, and that we are thus a religion not for all of humanity, but rather one that calls only its own.

When Desmond writes

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Fact: Ancestry matters.

she is quoting McNallen.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2008, 10:21:56 pm by Barnaby_McEwan »

Offline bls926

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #16 on: June 04, 2008, 08:00:23 pm »
I really know very little about these neo-Nazi, neo-Pagan, or Heathen beliefs. That being said, how are the beliefs explained in some of these passages any different than the view held by most American Indians? Each Nation has their own spiritual beliefs and feel that they are specific to a People. What is Spirit for a Lakota is not necessarily Spirit for a Cherokee. The While Buffalo Calf Woman holds no meaning for the Cherokee; a white buffalo has no real meaning to any of the Southeastern Tribes. The owl and panther hold no special significance to a Lakota, while they are important to the Cherokee. So how are these groups y'all have been discussing any different with their belief that their faith is for a specific ethnicity? Not meaning to cause problems, just looking for some clarification.

frederica

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #17 on: June 04, 2008, 09:22:06 pm »
bls, I have to look it up as we go along, as I don't generally have a clue to their beliefs. But my feeling is in this situtation their beliefs, concepts,  premise have been used by others in the past and present for evil and it would be hard to disassociate yourself from how it's been used. Especially if you continue to use the same thing. But that's just my superficial opinion. Barnaby and Ingeborg have a better concept of what it is.

Offline Barnaby_McEwan

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #18 on: June 04, 2008, 09:47:02 pm »
...how are the beliefs explained in some of these passages any different than the view held by most American Indians? Each Nation has their own spiritual beliefs and feel that they are specific to a People.

I've been thinking about that today.

Putting it charitably, Asatru is a highly speculative invention: their calling it a reconstruction is absurd.  Rather than bringing the past into the present, I think it's an effort to legitimise its adherents' pet political ideas by projecting them into the past, pretending they come from a golden age. Its practitioners believe it was practiced by pre-Christian northern Europeans from England to Norway, from Iceland to Switzerland. Differences of time and place get mashed into a kind of Dungeons-and-Dragons equivalent of the pan-Indianism that sometimes makes people uneasy here. All this is based on a few fragments of parchment, a few carvings and inscriptions, and it is an insult to the European ancestors these people claim to revere.

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According to a widely held view, the cult of the Germanic race was related to and even nourished by pre-Christian memories rooted in the native soil from which Wotan and Thor were never wholly extirpated. Closer examination, however, reveals the Germanic pantheon as a laborious reconstruction after an eclipse of the Nordic gods which was almost as total as that of the Etruscan or Celtic. Indeed, German mythology was only preserved outside Germany...

(Leon Poliakov, The Aryan Myth: A History of Racist and Nationalist Ideas in Europe, p. 74. Sussex University Press 1974.)

Most, but not all, Asatru followers believe race - whether they want to call it that or ancestry or 'metagenetics' - determines whether a person can take part in their communities. As far as I understand it, if a non-Indian person is part of an Indian community (maybe through marriage), learns the language, learns how to behave and shows that they can be trusted, then they might well be invited to ceremony. In other words not being Indian isn't necessarily a barrier to taking part in ceremony: it's the person's standing in the community that counts. 'Folkish' groups will never allow a person who cannot 'pass' to attain a position in their community. They are racists.


Offline Moma_porcupine

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #19 on: June 05, 2008, 03:34:48 am »
bls926
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how are the beliefs explained in some of these passages any different than the view held by most American Indians? Each Nation has their own spiritual beliefs and feel that they are specific to a People.
I've been thinking about this too , and trying to put my finger on what is the difference. I'm not sure everyone involved if these groups are what would be considered White supremacists, but I think where the feeling of being connected with your ancestors crosses over into something different is when people who have a similar descent but aren't  so called "pure blood" are excluded and their other ancestry is seen as some kind of a taint. Indigenous people do feel their ancestry is important, but I  don't think some idealized "racial purity" has anything to do with that.

 A White, Black or Asian person with an enrolled American Indian grandparent could probably be enrolled , and be fully accepted as a member of the Native community .

An African or Asian person with a White grandparent would probably not be welcome to join a group that was White supremacist, even if they lived their whole lives in a Northern European community.

Even a person with only a bit of Native descent will often have their connection with the culture supported as long as they stay respectful and don't start acting like a White person wanting to grab everything and be the leader . 

I think White supremacists are different because they usually want to exclude people just because they are visibly mixed blood .
« Last Edit: June 05, 2008, 03:47:56 am by Moma_porcupine »

frederica

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #20 on: June 05, 2008, 05:36:19 am »
MP, I agrree mostly with what you say. But one of the problems I been thinking about is that they are not born to their beliefs, for the most part anyway. They have been adopted or learned at a later age for whatever reason they have chosen. They may not all be White Supremacist. Probably just racist.  But one of the earlier post of Barnaby's was a link to Stormfront and that is the Nationalist Coalition. http://ncoal.com/about.htm  There is no doubt about them and anyone tied to them.  The problem I see you do not know their motives. We were born into a culture. I just don't think these people were.

Offline bls926

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2008, 06:39:24 pm »
Thanks everyone for your thoughts on this.

On the surface it doesn't look so different, what is ours is ours, handed down for our people. But the fact that these Heathen, neo-Pagan types are making their beliefs up as they go along, mixing German with Nordic with Celtic, changes everything. If these were beliefs that had been handed down thru the generations it would be different, but they haven't been. Apparently they are using these made-up beliefs to justify their racism. Maybe they think it'll work, since Native people say something similar. In some cases maybe it does, if one doesn't look deeper into the origins of these groups. Just can't take any of them at face value.

Offline Moma_porcupine

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #22 on: June 06, 2008, 09:13:44 pm »
One thing I've been thinking is how People from Asia, Siberia , India,  Africa and the Middle East have been traveling into Northern Europe and intermarrying for the last several thousand years and the true history of Northren Europe never has been entirely "White" and has always included a degree of ethnic divesity and a few people of color. Sometimes more than a few.  So any "whites only" or even "Northern Europeans only" heritage group is making up a false history right there. When you start digging around in the cultural hstory of Europe it is really suprising to learn how far away from Northern Europe many of the influences came from.

And trying to keep sensitve cultural traditions within the right context is really differnt than pretending to feel protective of a history that never existed.

How I see it is that there is sensitive parts of Native traditions which function largely because they connect Native people to a truely ancient history and a community that shares this history. Only people with this deep of a connection and the support of a community with the same connections, can have what is required to know how to protect and preserve these traditions for future generations. Over and over I see non native people think that their immediate comfort and personal desires are more important than the long term health of these traditions. They aren't bad people, they just don't have the same perspective. This is an entirely practical reason why people without this same heritage and knowledgable community support , should not be in a position to affect the most sensitive parts of Native cultures. And with a few exceptions, the only places most Native people are saying non native people just don't belong , ever, is in the position of being the bosses and leaders of traditional ceremonies. It's only the people who get upset over not being able to be boss that object. Which is, in itself, much of the problem.

I think there is a difference between wanting to exclude people when there is a good practical reason for this and wanting to exclude people just to create an elite identity for yourself or your group.

I've also been feeling guilty because my comment that grabbing everything and trying to manouver oneself into the position of boss is "acting like a White person " . I usually try to avoid comments associating behavior with skin color, and I usually try to direct my comments towards behavior and the circumstances people encounter while living in their community that encourage a particular behavior, and not peoples racial origins. European cultures do generally seem to encourage and reward dominence and personal aquisition, and many "White people" seem deeply compelled to act this out.  I guess there is a good side to this, but that way of doing things also creates many problems . I know there is many White people don't behave like this at all. I hope me reffering to this as the way "White people behave " didn't offend anyone.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2008, 09:58:21 pm by Moma_porcupine »

Offline Barnaby_McEwan

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #23 on: June 06, 2008, 10:17:02 pm »
Apparently they are using these made-up beliefs to justify their racism.

I wish I'd seen this page a few days ago. It's written by an Asatru person who has no time for the 'folkish' tendency:

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...it is quite apparent to anyone not trying to shut their ears against what they don't want to hear that the real motivation of these Folkists is not religious at all, but political. That this is so can be seen by visiting the message boards and websites of such Folkists. Many focus primarily on the issue of race and such political issues, mentioning actual religious ideas little, if at all.

One thing I've been thinking is how People from Asia, Siberia , India,  Africa and the Middle East have been traveling into Northern Europe and intermarrying for the last several thousand years and the true history of Northren Europe never has been entirely "White" and has always included a degree of ethnic divesity and a few people of color. Sometimes more than a few.

Similar objections to folkish fairytales are also mentioned on the page I linked to above.

[Note: in earlier posts I've posted links to cached pages of racist sites. I'm going to alter these to the text-only versions, which won't request image files from those sites.]

« Last Edit: June 06, 2008, 10:24:32 pm by Barnaby_McEwan »

Offline bls926

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #24 on: June 07, 2008, 05:58:12 am »
Thank you, Barnaby. I read that whole article by Wayland Skallagrimsson. (Racism in Asatru  http://www.uppsalaonline.com/uppsala/racism.htm) While I still don't fully understand Asatru, I've got a much better idea of what really is and isn't part of their core beliefs. Racism is not part of historical Heathen religion and shouldn't be part of modern-day Heathenism.

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To put things simply, there are three major camps of Asatruar: the Universalists, the Tribalists, and the Folkish. Universalists and Folkish practitioners are two extremes, with the (more reasonable) center being Tribalism, into which category the majority of Asatruar fall. These are the factions that have formed from three different answers to the question: "Who can practice Asatru?"

The Universalists accept anyone and everyone. That group seems New Agey to me.

The Folkish are the racists, saying that the ability to worship their gods is in the blood. Skallagrimsson blows their reasoning to hell.

Tribalists believe their religion is culture based. This makes sense to me.

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"Anyone who makes a sufficient effort to understand and adopt the culture of the ancient heathens." This gives Asatru rigorous enough standards to make sure our practice is like that of the ancients, and is well understood, for to fully adopt another culture requires MUCH study. Additionally the gods first came to be known in the context of the ancient culture, so it stands to reason that they can only be truly understood in the terms of that culture.

Apparently Asatru is experiencing growing pains, with these three factions unable to come to an agreement on what the Heathen religion should really be; and no one wanting to confront the problems head on.

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Much is made, in the modern Asatru community, of "not rocking the boat", and "getting along", and "being fair and open-minded".  For this reason, when subjects such as the rightness or wrongness of Folkish practice come up in conversation, as on discussion forums, people quickly leap to say such things as "Let's not open up that can of worms," or "But they're just expressing their honest opinions." I think this practice is wrong. Folkism is, in general, racism and makes a virtue out of clinging to ignorance and not thinking rationally. We should treat it as such. I think a zero-tolerance policy needs to be developed in modern Asatru lest we get dragged down by some real losers. We should discuss this. We should debate this. We should get rid of the ridiculous notion that an individual's right to have an honest opinion is grounds for forcing the rest of us to associate ourselves, even indirectly, with it. We should call racists racists and make sure they have no say in the future of our religion.

It is an important tenet of our religioun, of our philosophy towards life as Asatruar, that a person is responsible for his or her actions. Well, inaction is an action too. Allowing racist beliefs to be spoken next to the beliefs of our cultural ancestors without comment gives the distinct impression to everyone that these are acceptable interpretations of the lore (and think how that affects those new to our path, as well as outsiders looking at us). It lends validity to the idea that our gods really think and feel as they do. My brothers and sisters, every time you let such opinions go unchallenged, every time you shut down a conversation with the words "let's not open up that can of worms again," or "well, they're just expressing their honest opinions," or "we've already had this conversation and it got nowhere,", every time you do these things THE RESULT OF YOUR ACTIVITIES IS THAT THE RACIST AGENDA IS ALLOWED TO FLOURISH. IT IS PROMOTED. IT IS ALLOWED TO DOMINATE MORE AND MORE OF WHO WE ARE AS ASATRUAR.




Side note . . . I love this sentence.

But it is possible to be so open-minded that your brains fall out, so fair that wrongs are tolerated and allowed to flourish.

I agree with this 100%.
« Last Edit: June 07, 2008, 06:00:22 am by bls926 »

Offline Ari

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #25 on: June 10, 2008, 01:14:11 am »
Hi folkies,

I know nothing about this North European nationalistic groups to make any judgment about them...

But i don't understand the position of this board about racism.

My take is that anyone has full right to allow anybody into their home and soul or not allow anybody into their home and soul... with no obligation to give explanations actually.

I think what we call racism and what we consider to be negative happens if there is violence and exploitation of one national (racial) group by another.

I don't know if simple desire to keep your community closed to entrance of foreigners can be considered a racism... theoretically right of any community to be closed if members decide so should be respected. Otherwise we are dealing with abuse of human rights not less than in case of violent racism.

I think this issue is very important... Unification and globalization just does not go right. It goes ill way. I think at this point it would do good if collective consciousness would be shifted to more respect to national identity... folk soul (no nazi ties attached)

BTW, i figured that my user name can be taken wrong... it has nothing to do with race identity.. this is my cat's musical name: Aria.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_mAUm-bqlHI

 

 
« Last Edit: June 10, 2008, 01:17:20 am by Ari »

Offline bls926

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #26 on: June 12, 2008, 02:18:01 pm »
I don't think anyone here thinks it's racist to want to keep your heritage, culture, spirituality exclusively yours. It becomes racist when one group thinks they are superior to all others. When a group reinvents their history in order to exclude others who they feel are inferior, that falls under racism.

Offline Barnaby_McEwan

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #27 on: June 18, 2008, 06:37:14 pm »
I think what we call racism and what we consider to be negative happens if there is violence and exploitation of one national (racial) group by another.

If I understand you correctly, then you wouldn't have a problem with drinking fountains or bus seats marked "colored only".

I think your definition is too narrow. Racism is based on the stupid idea that skin colour is connected to moral, spiritual, intellectual or other qualities. 'Folkish' neo-pagans police their religion, preventing entry by people without white enough skin, or those who may be contaminated by Jewishness: how is that not racism?

Offline Ari

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #28 on: June 18, 2008, 07:37:21 pm »
Well, this "colored only" thing is social violence and exploitation sure.

I don't know, Barnaby... more i think about it, less i can see clear... You know, i had many years of experience of been trapped in living in absolutely foreign to me cultures, contaminated by involvement into Castanedism also.  I'm deeply stressed by it to be able to rationalize.
 

Offline Ari

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Re: Yngona Desmond
« Reply #29 on: June 18, 2008, 11:13:22 pm »
Barnaby, here... i've got a spark! lol!

Reading your thread about honoring American war heroes... You know... it does not sound exactly honorable to my foreign ear... American heroes in wars for American interests always on somebody else's extremely remote territories... Sure those warrior guys can be good people, but the enterprise is not exactly honorable.
Actually, there is tendency in American society to re-write history of great wars of 20th century to misrepresent American role and cover the fact that there was very little honor and heroism on American part there.
Like when you talking about honoring American heroes of war with Japan, the only undeniable image crossing my mind is atomic cloud over Hiroshima. It can't be covered with anything of imaginable goodness...
And with racism... it seems that Americans would like to dominate here too, giving the world their homemade model of what should be considered to be racism and how it should be treated and how globalization should be going. 
But... the reality of other places is different and the issue of racism was is and will be different there.
You know, after all Germans have done, there are not many people in modern Europe who would be hating and trying to avoid them or impose special conditions over them.
BTW, actually i see it strange that i could advance in my protest against Castanedian Cleargreen exploiting Indigenous culture just in Europe. And i did it all alone, with no support whatsoever coming from Indians of America.
As i gather in US social and cultural reality such protest would not bring any fruitful result but trouble to protestant. This is twisted let me tell...