Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Asatru Kindred

The Asatru Kindred Image
Collegiate Dictionary defines Kindred as: A group of related individuals; Of a similar nature and character; Of the same ancestry. I would agree with that definition, but it is only partly true. The Asatru Kindred is the foundation for the new Asatru Nation, and as such, is the testing ground for the new tribes of our Folk. In the near future, the Kindred will prove to be the living entity that will survive the onslaught of Ragnarok.

In ancient times, our people survived as an extended family. As populations grew, these extended families joined together to form tribes. This tribe was, in essence, a group of extended families. Over the years they developed their own unique traits, value systems, heritage, traditions, religion, and other vital characteristics. As time wore on, and the people grew larger in numbers, these tribes joined with others of similar character and formed Nations. Again, this method served the people for many years.

During the late Viking Age, and with the coming of Christianity, things changed. The Christian Church was only able to assert its authority over the people by either bribing certain leaders of the Nations with promises of unlimited power and authority with the promise of Kingship, or they obtained the same ends with the use of force and treachery. So, one by one, the Nations submitted to absolute control of the Church through the clever manipulation of Kings.

To further assert this absolute control over the people, countries were formed. These were nothing more than geographical areas defined by lines on a map. They were, in effect, the geographical areas where the new Kings could wield absolute control. Any farther than that was claimed by a neighboring Kingdom. Over time, this led to the formation of towns and cities of such size that large numbers of people were needed just to serve the infrastructure of the Kingdoms. People left the ancestral farmlands to live in the cities and serve the Kings and their armies. Once the Folk lost their natural bond with the land, they lost their souls, and the power and influence of the Kings and the Church was absolute.

The ties which bound the tribes together common ancestry, religion, heritage and social structures were meaningless in the towns and cities. All that mattered is that you swore allegiance to the King and the country which he led. It goes without saying, that the great fratricidal wars of Europe and America could not have been fought without this artificial form of political control wielded by the Church and State.

Today, as Asatru asserts itself, we must learn from the lessons of the past. And to regain our freedoms, we must work hard to rebuild our ancestral tribes. The Kindred is vital to our success and survival as an indigenous people.

Sadly enough, although Asatru at this time is experiencing tremendous growth, many who return to their ancestral religion don't wish to join or found Kindreds. They prefer to worship the Holy Aesir and Vanir alone, or occasionally with a few others of like mind. They do not want to be bothered with commitments, or they do not want anyone depending on them, or they just do not have time for working with others. This article is not for them. This article is for those who are endowed with the spirit of Tyr and are willing to devote their lives to building the Nation of Asatru and serving the Folk. Sacrifice is what makes you an Asatruar, not convenience.

I hope that this article has been of some help in explaining both what one should do to form a Kindred, but also how an existing Kindred can avoid some of the mistakes that the Founders made back in the days when forming a Kindred was breaking new ground with no one to look to for advice and instruction.

As the Asatru Community grows, and it is at a rapid rate, the Folk will look to the Kindreds to provide them with a place to be with people of like mind and purpose; a place for spiritual growth, and a place to share common social values.

It is up to us to prepare for the future by promoting the formation and growth of healthy and vibrant Kindreds, and thus secure a future for our children on Midgard.