AFA: Blog

Words from the Alsherjargothi

Category Archives: Observances

Happy Winter Nights

This weekend, the Asatru Folk Assembly celebrates Winter Nights. In the AFA, we make the Disir a primary focus of our WInter Nights festivities. We hold a Disablot to honor our Disir and ask their continued guidance and protection. This time of year, the veil between the world of the living and the dead thins and we seek to honor our grandmothers and theirs before them, the sacred ladies of our folk that watch over their families from beyond. We would like to wish our AFA family a fantastic Winter Nights and the loving blessings of the Disir.

Hail the Disir!

Matthew Flavel
Alsherjargothi,
Asatru Folk Assembly

Happy Winter Finding!

Today marks the Autumnal Equinox. The expansiveness of summer draws to a close and the contraction of winter begins. Traditionally our ancestors brought food in for storage after a bountiful harvest. Fall was and is also the season of the hunt, venturing into the wild to gather food for the long winter ahead. Fall has always been a special time to me, growing up it marked the beginning of the “holiday season,” warm times around the fireplace with family and friends as the snow began to fall and the darkness came earlier and earlier. Fall also marked the beginning of hunting season and, where I come from, that means moose season. To honor this time of the hunt and the steady approach of winter, we will be honoring Ullr at the Hof this weekend. As the leaves turn and a chill hits the air, I hope your hearts fill with cherished memories of days gone by and that, together with your families and kindreds, you build amazing memories for the future. The Asatru Folk Assembly would like to wish all our folk a joyous Winter Finding!
 
Matthew Flavel
Alsherjargothi,
Asatru Folk Assembly

Day of Remembrance for Hermann der Cherusker

What better hero to remember and honour in this time when our own noble folk, our sacred traditions, our entire culture are under attack.
Hermann was born into a noble family of the Cherusci people(a German tribe)about 17 or 18 BC. His father was a supporter of the Romans and at the proper time Hermann was trained as a Roman soldier. He quickly rose up the ranks to eventually command a detachment of auxiliary troops.
In AD 9, at the young age of 25, Hermann tricked Publius Varus, a Roman governor of the region, unto walking into an ambush. Unbeknownst to the Romans Hermann had been building a confederation of German tribes to confront them in the Teutoberg forest. Varus marched in with 3 full legions, 3 cavalry detachments, and 6 cohorts of auxiliary troops……. over 20,000 soldiers. There in the Teutoberg they were slaughtered almost to a man.
This decisive victory was quickly followed up by a purge of all Roman garrisons east of the Rhine river. For the rest of Hermann’s life he would fight against the Romans and the pro-Roman sympathizers within his own people. Most modern historians view the battle of the Teutoberg forest as Rome’s greatest defeat. It allowed the German folk to grow and mature as a culture with little overt outside influence until the coming of Attila in the 400’s.

Hail Hermann!!! Noble hero of the Cherusci.

In honour of his name get up, get out—— go and do something. Organize a meet and greet with other Asatru Folk Assembly members and folkish Asatruars; Go hiking through a forest and try to imagine how it must of been there amongst the trees battling for the future of the German folk; Get yourself added to the AFA volunteer list and help where you are able…….. Hermann was a doer, let us be doers as well. Let us do something to help our Folk and preserve our heritage now.

Blaine Qualls
Gothar Coordinator,
Asatru Folk Assembly

Day of Remembrance for King Radbod of Frisia

Traditionally the Asatru Folk Assembly has celebrated the 9th day of each month with a remembrance day to a hero or well known person relevant to our native folkways. In an effort to make our membership more aware of these important folk heroes and to again honour their memory we will be posting a short article each month on that month’s honoree.

In August we have traditionally celebrated King Raedbed (Radbod) of Frisia. Radbod’s story actually begins with his predecessor, Aldgisl, who, as king, allowed a christian missionary to spread his alien ways across the land. Aldgisl and many of the local sub-chiefs accepted this new faith……within just two years of this missionary’s arrival Aldgisl was replaced by Radbod, who still held true to the ancestral ways, as king.
As with many leaders of his time, Radbod allowed missionaries to enter his land and talk of their new faith. At constant war with his christianized Frankish neighbors Radbod even eventually agreed to be baptised in this new faith, but as the day neared for his baptism he had one nagging question, “What had befell his ancestors who never accepted this alien faith?”
The monk, when asked, in unusually direct and honest fashion answered, “Why those godless heathens are in hell burning alive for all eternity.” Obviously not the answer Radbod was expecting……the christian missionaries were driven from the land, even pushing the Franks completely out of Frisia. His steadfastness gave his people a few more years of freedom from alien oppression. Radbod remained true to his ancestors and their folkways until his death in 719 CE.
What a role model for today, here is a man who took a stand for his ancestors, for his people, when not doing so almost certainly would have been easier. How can we emulate that in our daily lives? How can we channel that honour and integrity in our spiritual path?
First, and foremost, we can honour Radbod with a blessing and draught of the horn in a small remembrance celebration.
We can not back down when alien creeds try to harm us with lies and gossip. Show our pride in our ancestors, our pride in those who forged this path we now tread.
We can meditate on Othila, the final rune in the rune row. The rune of ancestral homelands and of ancestral blood. The sacred enclosure that protects and embodies our folk. Meditate on how our choices and actions can strengthen this enclosure.
Finally, enjoy your freedom. That same freedom that Radbod gave to his people. Stand tall and proud, free of any bedouin taint and giving your children a chance to be strong, free, and true to their ancestral folkways.

Hail Radbod!

Blaine Qualls
Gothar Coordinator,
Asatru Folk Assembly

Happy Independence Day

In 1776, the founding fathers of the United States of America risked all. They pledged to each other their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor in a quest to secure for their families and their fellows a new nation built upon values they believed in. President Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence acknowledged the ancestral inspiration of “Hengist and Horsa, the Saxon chiefs from whom we claim the honor of being descended, and whose political principles and form of government we have assumed.” The Asatru Folk Assembly would like to wish our members and their families a joyous and triumphant Independence Day.

Matt Flavel
Alsherjargothi, AFA

Memorial Day

The Asatru Folk Assembly would like to raise a horn to the the warriors of the United States military who have fought bravely and died nobly for the men next to them. Our Folk have always held those that die in battle as worthy of eternal praise, their names and deeds resound in Valhalla.

Hail the fallen!

Matt Flavel
Alsherjargothi, AFA