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Explaining Heathenism Effectively

By Uncle Thor

If an open-minded friend asked about your beliefs, what would you tell him? Keep in mind that he equates part of your beliefs to old myths, comic book Gods and medieval history. He has likely been taught to believe in a single deity, a father-son dual God or a triple-God. There may or may not be angels and saints in his religious thinking.

Where do you begin? If you start describing the classic images of the Aesir and Vanir, how might he react? Do they sound just like the myths or the characters in comic books? Might he not think they are better suited to fantasy games? Like it or not, but your explanation runs smack into his existing ideas. Being human, his mind will seek connections. The most obvious ones are to the characters of myth and comics he has seen before. They have the same names and some of the same attributes. Your friend may very well have a hard time understanding how a rational person like yourself could accept such seemingly irrational beliefs

In effect, you have played right into his existing misconceptions. We know that Thor is actually a spiritual entity and does not fly around in a magickal goat cart. We know that Freya is not a top-heavy lass cavorting hither and yon thanks to luft-kitties. The mythic images are just that: images. They were visual ideas used to help connect people to the Gods. We know that. Your friend does not.

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