At long last, we finish up the “Defense” of Rhyd. It’s been a ride, but hopefully it will be over with this post.
Returning To The Heart of the Matter
Though I’ve seen a significant amount of criticism from people within my own religious community, I’ve received much more overwhelming support for the article in question. This support has come from all sorts of people, but most has been from those who have been worried about these New Right intersections far longer than I have been.
Marxists of a feather stick together.
What I’m taking from this is there’s a lot of back room back patting over this on the Pagan Websites, congratulations to Rhyd on getting the first shot out at the “fascists,” probably a bit of bubbly, and he’s getting cheers from all the non-Pagan Marxists out there scared of fighting the Alt-Right on another front besides the social and political.
The extreme rhetoric regarding me or this piece is obscuring a much larger issue. As I noted at the beginning of this essay, the information page was presented as a supplementary resource to the article about Augustus Sol Invictus, a known Fascist and New Right candidate who shares much of the same theology and practices as some of the fiercest critics of my piece.
You mean the same Augustus Sol Invictus who, in the same breath you discribed as a fascist, also mentioned was a Libertarian?
Also, with a name like that I’m pretty sure Invictus is probably a Cultor. So…guess that’s another mark against Rome by you. Really need to look this guy up. Be nice to have an actual religiously Roman politician out there. And the fact that Rhyd “Rhyd Scare” Wildermuth thinks he’s a libertarian fascist (yeah, I’m not sure how that works) means I might actually enjoy this guys political speeches.
But hey, this is the kind of publicity that has skyrocketed Trump to the top of the political charts. Who knows, maybe Invictus will “Make Paganism Great Again” or something.
Holy shit, I should email him with that…
Paganism in general—and apparently Devotional and Reconstructionist Polytheism in particular—have been long overdue for a reckoning. How do we differentiate our own practices and beliefs from someone whose identical practises and beliefs actually lead them to advocate for racial purity or separtism, the primacy of European gods, eugenics to prevent the birth of disabled people, and even human sacrifice? What is really the difference between the Fascism of Augustus Sol Invictus, or New Right ideology of Stephen McNallen and Alain de Benoist, and the rest of polytheist belief?
“Paganism in general—and apparently Devotional and Reconstructionist Polytheism in particular—have been long overdue for a reckoning”
Now, after all this I know people got upset at this phrase, but the only thing I can think of really is, well…
Whatcha gonna do Rhyd? You already spent so long insisting this wasn’t about a witch hunt or “Rhyd Scare” type of getting rid of wrong think. Whatcha gonna do, go and bring a Reckoning upon Polytheism and Paganism for our “sins?” Please tell me you’re gonna come rolling in with the theme song from Cops. That would be so hilarious. 😄
Also, congradulations, you spent your entire article saying “I didn’t call all these people fascists”….to call all those people fascists.
“What is really the difference between the Fascism of Augustus Sol Invictus, or New Right ideology of Stephen McNallen and Alain de Benoist, and the rest of polytheist belief?” – Rhyd Wildermuth, 2016
Tribalism, Sacred Kingship, Traditionalism, natural hierarchies (specifically, ‘warrior/priest/cultivator’), and anti-egalitarian notions are all crucial aspects of New Right ideology, along with a constructed threat to the revitalisation of ‘European’ cultures. In Europe, the New Right primarily focuses on Islam and immigrants as the threat to the return of ancestral cultures, along with extreme rhetoric about the ‘radical left’ or Marxists.
And if you’d pick up a news paper, you’d understand why.
Then again, Rhyd is the man who ran away from my blog and has never spoken to me again after I threatened to show him the evidence and facts that were the foundation of my own anti-Islamist position. Because facts hurt Marxist ideologies, apparently.
For some American Polytheists, it appears the enemy is the same, except the enemy at the gates also happens to be someone who dared compile information that’s been readily available for years. And as many of my co-religionists seem eager to forget, I’ve been within the gate this entire time.
Given that the Alt-Right as a political movement only started up in the last year…being available for “years” is a bit of a stretch. But hey, you’re mostly just labeling a bunch of people you don’t like as Alt-Right because all these people you’ve abused, ostracized, and othered for years are finally coming together under one banner.
And no, we’re not forgetting you’ve been in the gate. In fact, we kinda remember you as the gate keeper. And now you’re telling us to go out the gate because we’re not welcome any more. So really, we protestors are the radicals at the gate, and you’re the guys on the throne who we’re finally starting to see as having exploited us, our good will, tolerance, and faith.
And that’s where I must admit my one error in writing that piece. There is currently a debate occurring on who is and who is not allowed to be a devotional polytheist. For some, devotional polytheism requires that ‘the gods are the final authority,’ for others, human choice is crucial.
Really? Because, you know, I will freely admit I was buried in World of Warcraft until this mess started, but I kinda think I would recall that debate. In fact, it sounds like the kind of debate I would not only know about, but would be involved in. So if this debate has missed me, please drop links below. Otherwise…
In stating that “Because Devotional Polytheism places final authority in ‘the gods’ . . .,” I accepted a minority view of my own religion. So, I will restate that paragraph here, and make changes on the site as such:
“Because some Devotional Polytheists place final authority in ‘the gods’ and emphasize hierarchical relationships (between human and god, priest and devotee), ethical questions cannot be challenged by concerned people because ‘the gods will it.’”
I was not aware that the “Gods First” voice in the devotional polytheistic community was the “minority” voice.
That being said, Rhyd has now just marginalized a minority voice, removing it’s importance in the “egalitarian” community he wishes to build. In doing so he is reinforcing hierarchical systems of oppression against minority groups by giving a place of privilege to the apparent majority of “gods second” devotional polytheists such as himself and Pagans at large. Such classist behaviors are inherently harmful to the pagan community and to the minority members of the devotional polytheistic community which he has now vilified and sought to silence as well as marginalized. Indeed, given that a large majority of these devotional polytheists in the “gods’ first” camp are women, and Rhyd himself being a man, this mansplaining and patriarchal oppression of these devotional women only furthers the sexism and marginalization inherent in…
There are some deeply difficult questions that we need to ask. Do the gods want us to return to ‘tribal’ societies, do the gods demand we war against Muslims and Atheists and Leftists, do the gods demand we institute strict hierarchies and authority-relationships between priests and the rest of us? And did those gods happen to notice those are the same ideas of the New Right?
Do the Gods want us to return to tribal societies? Well, if you’re a Heathen God…yes. If you’re a Roman God, the consensus seems to be more a Republic society, possibly an Imperial one.
do the Gods want us to wage war against the Muslims, Atheists, and Leftists? Well, I’ve dealt with the Norse for a long time and the Romans for a couple years now. After the mass rape and other large scale crime waves in Europe, the answer for the Norse seems to be…Yes. After Palmyra and other situations with ISIS (in addition to Islam’s hand in the destruction of the Eastern Roman Empire), the consensus with Rome is….much yes. Do they wish us to wage war against the Atheists? Well to be fair, the Atheists started that (looking at you Halstead) and the Gods merely supported our self defense. At which point, given that Rhyd and G&R is now doing to us what Halstead did to us, only on what is ultimately a much larger and more destructive scale…Yeah, I’m pretty sure the Gods are going to support a fight against the Marxists who wish to vilify them, dethrone them, and destroy the ancient traditions.
Wow, those questions weren’t hard at all!
And did the Gods happen to notice all these things were New Right ideas? Probably, but mostly because the New Right adopted them from the Gods, unconsciously or consciously. I’m sure the Gods are going to be looking at the Alt-Right much the same way many pagans like myself are now. Not as some side thing to be ignored, but as a potential resource for the preservation and glorification of our Pagan religions in the face of totalitarian Marxists.
Perhaps some gods do want that, but that leads us to another question:
Do we want that?
At this point…I want it.
And since the entire point of Paganism for me (and a whole lot of Pagans) is to align ourselves with the Divine, to live better and holier lives, to restore that which was taken from us, and honor that which created us, I’m pretty sure that deep down, what the Gods want is what a lot, if not most, Pagans want. Because what the Gods want, what Pagans want, is to be able to have Paganism practiced freely and as close to the original desires of the Gods as possible.
If this means supporting some Alt-Right ideas which are derived from Classical Paganism, then I think a lot of us will ultimately be fine with that, since the choice seems to be “accept the Alt-Right” or “give up everything your paganism is that doesn’t agree with our Marxism.”
We wouldn’t do it for the Christians, so what makes you so much more special or right?
It’s that conversation that I wish we were having, not whether or not “Gods & Radicals should be retitled ‘Radicals With Gods,’” as John Beckett asserts, or whether or not my true agenda “is the destruction of our individual traditions, the silencing of opposing voices, the silencing of religious voices, the end of polytheism,” as Galina Krasskova proclaims.
Hey, hey. I said you should be re-titled “Godless & Uneducated.” “Radicals with Gods” is what you’re gonna get if you keep pushing this religious war you got going on here.
But hey, the conversation you wanted isn’t the conversation you’re getting. In fact, you aren’t getting the desired conversation because intentionally or not, G&R bitch-slapped the Pagan community with an iron gauntlet and said “Dishonorable fascist dogs, I spit at thee!!!!”
And then you wondered why we all drew swords and que’d up for our duels.
But you’ve made it pretty clear with your Marxism that you do desire the destruction of individual traditions, the silencing of opposing religious voices, and the end of polytheism as it is being practiced, because they all support a Non-Marxist system of being.
It’s a conversation that we all really need to have soon. And despite the deep anger and wild accusations about my perceived intentions, I’m honored and humbled to have been able to initiate it.
Yeah, we’re not going to have that conversation Rhyd. And we’re not going to have it because of you and G&R.
In “trying to start an anti-fascist dialogue” you have shown people that they have two options. Keep their non-Marxist faith (and thus join the Alt-Right “Fascists) or sacrifice their faith in the name of Marxist Egalitarianism. You, not we, have made this an either or situation. You, not we, have insisted that there is only the options of “thoughtpolicing wrongthink” within our paths and questioning, even denying, the sacred commands of our Gods, or being labeled a fascist needing to be destroyed so that “equality” can be the word of the day. You, not we, made this a zero-sum game.
You speak of reckonings for Paganism. You speak of the need to destroy “systems of inequality” no matter how sacred those systems might be, or how hard we have all fought to bring them back. You ask..no, You demand that we destroy all we have built in order to fit your world view, your desires, and your “Pagan” religion, even at the cost of our own.
So be proud as you like for firing the first shot. Be proud of starting this conversation. But you have sown the wind, and shall reap the whirlwind.