Though i agree with most of what the author says i would like to correct / expand on a few things (mainly historical):
- I do not refer to myself as “tribalist” or any other such modern term (though my attitude fits), as a matter of fact i dont even call myself “Asatruar” (also a modern term) exept for clarification, i simply have a “sidr” (custom).
- I do not see the custom as a “new” reconstructivist religion (entirely). Heathenry was never centralized or homogenous but always had differences in different regions and time periods. Being offically Christian, most Nordic countries had (and have) customs, traditions, linguistic and other remnants that are clearly “Heathen” (regardless of context) and much also lived on in folkloric form , leaving what must be reconstructed a smaller task than, say, Kemetic religions (Egyptian)….on the other hand, they have more written material.A Swedish Christmas looks more like a blot than anything Roman or Palestinian.In Sweden there are foloric Heathens, basing their customs on regional folklore (including Christian / Christianized elements) rather than archeology and history , seeing it as a normal extension of the Norse customs (they often call themselves “Norrön Sed, Northern Custom”, to dstinguish from other forms of Heathenry).
- Slaves (thralls) where not usually let free and then on equal satus. And “foreigner” can also be discussed (the Norse fought other Norsemen more than other people, and also other Germanic peoples such as the Anglo-Saxons and Normans (pretty much cousins). A slave could be set free or buy his / her freedom but it took a generation for a full “freeman” (Karl) status and he/she was expected to remain loyal to his/her masters even after freedom was attained.
- There is no such thing as human races from a genetic standpoint.Homo Sapiens is a species with one race.
- Most that would qualify as “Universalists” here that i know of (as well as people of other religions who incorporate Norse Gods)know far more than “Freya is a love Goddess”.Quite a few Wiccans ,for instance, are scholars on the subject(s).I do agree wth the argument though.What i call Forn Sed cant be separated from culture in general(including regional dfferences).
- We do not know to what extent slaves where part of cult practices.We DO know however that successful free people living in the North was part of Norse society since their burials where according to usual customs even though DNA shows that they where from other parts of the world (one Arab and one Ukrainian springs to mind.Both buried in mounds with grave goods).
I do agree that this must be adressed though.We live in a society of labels and terms.Personally i dont adhere to many of these labels as far as my custom goes but we are still defined and understodi by what we call ourselves (or others call us).
Having said that, Heathenry, like most European pre Christian religions is orthoprax, thus, what goes on in your mind, your exact beliefs, thoughts and emotions are your business.
But hey, if anything should be a Norse custom, rocking boats should be it. ;)