Welcome!

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Hello! I’d like to wish you all a very warm welcome to my blog, Modern Norse Heathen.

I am a 24 year old woman who lives in the UK, who was raised to be a Norse heathen.

I have always rejected the idea of organised religion, and instead prefer to practise heathenism – a belief system which allows you to follow your own path, rather than bow down before one deity.

I hope that this blog will help quel any negativity surrounding the heathen faith, and provide you with facts and interesting reading material on the subject.

Feel free to leave feedback in the comments – constructive criticism is always appreciated!

Also feel free to share my posts if you wish. 

A Weird Recurring Dream I Have… Is Anyone Good At Interpreting Dreams? 

Okay so please don’t judge me on this but I’ve recently been having a recurring dream which I’d like to share with you all. It starts out with me, my mother and my friend on the land where we keep our horses. Its very late at night, and the land is on a moor, so its pitch black except for our flashlights. We hear a deafening noise, then an explosion. Something doesn’t feel right so we hide in one of the outbuildings where we keep the tools and equipment. After a while we hear voices on our land – it transpires that a plane crashed a couple of fields away, and 3 Muslim men are the sole survivors. I quickly use my phone to check news websites, and read that England has fallen to Islam. The entire country is in chaos. The terrorists who crashed nearby are trying to hide in our buildings because what’s left of the police and military are trying to get a handle on the situation. We hear a police helicopter overhead, but the men (who have machine guns) shoot it down. It crashes into a wooded area nearby. The men try to open the door to where we are hidden, so I grab an axe and put it through the skull of the nearest guy. The other two quickly shoot my mother dead, then shoot my friend who is alive for now but fatally injured. I try to run at them with the axe but they overpower me, force me to the ground and violently beat me. They rip my clothes off and try to rape me, but I struggle too much so they beat me again. Then they notice the mjölnir necklace around my neck, so they start chanting Muslim verses from the Koran and beat me some more. I’m bloody and broken, and the assault goes on for hours. By now my friend has also died. I pray to the gods to deliver my country from these evil extremists. Suddenly the military burst in, and shoot one of the guys dead. The remaining guy quickly slits my throat, killing me, before being shot dead himself. Suddenly I’m sitting in a wooded glade, sunlight streaming through the trees, a river flowing at my feet. A man approaches, and I realise it is Odin. He tells me to look into the water and I realise its a bit like Dumbledore’s pensieve in the Harry Potter books/movies. I can see visions of what’s happening all over the country inside the water. Innocent people being tortured and killed by Islamic terrorists who have taken England for themselves. I also see images from around the world, where a similar fate has befallen mankind. The entire world has crumbled and the Muslims have taken over, brutally and without mercy. I dive into the water for some reason, perhaps to try and get back into the living world, to help end the slaughter. But I realise I am just in the river, I haven’t been transported back into the real world. Odin takes my hand, pulls me out of the water (I am miraculously dry as soon as I’m back on land) and leads me into the sunlight, ascending higher into the clouds until we arrive at a golden hall. He leads me through the giant oak doors, and there I am greeted by my mother, friend and all the other loved ones who have died. Then we all stand next to a window, through which we can see the entire earth as if from outer space. We see the whole world suddenly engulfed in a fireball, before imploding. The earth is dead, just a smouldering, charred array of billions of tiny pieces of rock. We drink, dance and celebrate, before welcoming more good people into the hall. The earth is destroyed, but so are the ones who tried to dominate it. Does this mean anything? Maybe recent terrorist attacks have just warped my mind… 

Significant UK Pagan Sites Which Are Also Connected To Norse Mythology 

Whilst doing some research into ancient pagan sites throughout the UK, I was amazed to discover that many of them also have links to Norse mythology/folklore! Here’s a list of some of my favourites: 

1. Name: Thor Stone

Location: Taston (known in ancient times as Thorstan), near Witney, Oxfordshire 

Type of site: 7ft stone monument 

Local legends: It is said that the stone appeared in the spot where a lightning bolt from Thor’s hammer, Mjölnir, struck the earth. There is also a myth that the stone is possessed by evil spirits and black magic, but this could have been a Christian invention. 

Facts: A cross was erected next to the stone during medieval times, indicating that it could have been a popular pagan moot spot. Archaeologists now believe that the Thor Stone is a remnant of an ancient stone circle, although if this is the case none of the other stones have survived. 

2. Name: Wayland’s Smithy 

Location: Knighton Hill, Oxfordshire, England 

Type of site: Neolithic long barrow and chamber tomb 

Local legends: It is said that this was once the forge of the magic blacksmith, Wayland, who is believed to have been the very same Wayland from the old Norse poem Volundarkitha, in which his name is translated as Volundr. He was also mentioned in Thidrek’s Saga. Locals believe that if you leave an unshod horse outside the smithy overnight, and leave a coin beside it, in the morning it will have brand new shoes. 

Facts: It is one of the last remaining sites of its kind left in the British Isles, and was first recorded in the Saxon charter of King Eadred in 955 AD. 

3. Name: Ness of Brodgar

Location: Orkney, Scotland 

Type of site: Stone circle 

Local legends: It is said that these megaliths who were actually giants, turned to stone by the breaking sun while dancing. Norse carvings have been discovered on the stones, and one is named ‘Odin’s Stone’ although the stones themselves are thought to long predate the vikings. 

Facts: There were once 60 stones erected there, but now only 27 remain. They have been there for at least 4000 years.


4. Name: Goodmanham 

Location: Goodmanham, Yorkshire, England 

Type of site: Church (built on the site of a pagan shrine) 

Local legends: It is believed that the village’s church was built on land which once housed a shrine to Odin (also known as Wotan by Anglo-Saxon pagans). There is an ongoing debate regarding whether this site had any actual Norse connection, although being in Yorkshire, there is a good chance that the viking invaders did visit. 

Facts: A church was built on the site when King Edwin of Northumbria decided to convert his kingdom entirely to Christianity in around 627 AD. The church was completed in 1130 AD. In a rather amusing twist, the original 9th century font (which went missing in around the 16th century and was consequently replaced) was found in a farmyard where it was being used as an animals’ drinking trough. 


I’m still finishing my research for the rest of the sites, and I will add them as soon as possible, but in the meantime if you want to suggest some more feel free to do so in the comments! 

Sheila Zilinsky: Christianized Slander Against Our Pagan Beliefs

Today I read an article about a woman I’d never heard of before, called Sheila Zilinsky. From what I can gather, she’s a popular TV personality in the US, and also happens to be a devout Christian who is highly opinionated. 

Usually I wouldn’t even open an article about such a person, but when I saw the title I just couldn’t resist: ‘Christian Activist Sheila Zilinsky: The Las Vegas Shooting Was A Pagan Blood Sacrifice Ritual’. 

Normally I wouldn’t bother giving someone so clearly deluded anymore publicity, but I am saddened and quite frankly angry that she is spouting such ridiculous, false and inaccurate claims to a mass of avid followers who will clearly believe (and possibly even act upon) literally anything she tells them. 

I left a rather long comment on her Facebook page detailing why and how she is wrong. Zilinsky obviously has zero knowledge regarding paganism, and is using her biased Christian view of our beliefs to corrupt other people’s minds against us. This in itself is nothing new, but as the Las Vegas tragedy is still so fresh in everyone’s minds, I am wary that it could fuel revenge attacks on innocent pagans, particularly in the USA.

For anyone who’s interested, here is a list of reasons why I believe Zilinsky’s claims are slanderous and inaccurate:

1. Guns are not the pagan’s usual weapon of choice.

2. Blood sacrifices/rituals do not occur in the modern day western world (or at least I’ve not heard of it happening within pagan communities and there is no evidence of it happening for centuries).

3. A mass shooting does not match any historical accounts of pagan blood sacrifices/rituals. It is usually a very personal, quick killing in which a sharp implement (for example, a knife or blade) slices into the neck, causing almost instantaneous death and allowing the blood to be collected or spilled upon the ground. 

4. Most pagans are not cowards. They probably would not have killed themselves after committing such an act, or would have at least left a note or some form of evidence to explain their actions – otherwise, the atrocity is meaningless. 

There are several more reasons I could list, but I’ve told these to Zilinsky personally. Anyone who wishes to comment or contact her about her ridiculous and unfounded claims can do so via her Facebook page. 

In my opinion, upon reviewing all the evidence discovered so far about the shooting, I personally believe that the man responsible was either mentally ill or just plain despicable. There has been no known link proven between him and religion/religious organisations. And if he did murder all those innocent people for religious reasons, I’d be willing to bet money on him being part of an Abrahamic religion. Paganism does not encourage or condone such terrible acts – Abrahamic religions do.

Even if the shooter was pagan (he isn’t, but I’ll humour Zilinsky’s theory for a moment) his actions or beliefs are not shared by the rest of us in the pagan community. That’s like saying all Muslims are terrorists, or all Christians burn witches. Just because a few commit such abhorrent crimes, doesn’t mean we all do. 

But I digress… Zilinsky, if you’re reading this: stop spreading lies about our faith. Or at least do some research before doing so! 

Full article which inspired this post: http://www.joemygod.com/2017/10/10/christian-activist-sheila-zilinksy-las-vegas-mass-shooting-pagan-blood-sacrifice-ritual-audio/

Why I’m An Anti-Feminist 

You’re probably wondering what on earth feminism has to do with heathenry, but believe me, it is definitely related.

The Vikings were very forward thinking with regards to women’s rights. Indeed, many women were held in higher esteem than most men! 

Now, before you all automatically assume I’m some sort of neo-Nazi psycho lesbian feminist bitch (sorry to hit all the stereotypes! Haha) please re-read the title: ANTI-feminist. Yep, that’s right – I am a woman who is AGAINST feminism!

Of course, the original suffragette movement was amazing. I have a great respect for those women who sacrificed themselves to give us ladies the right to vote, divorce errant husbands, have a career, wear whatever clothes they want, etc. Those brave females fought long and hard to change our lives for the better, and for that I will forever be grateful.

Modern feminism, however, is a joke. It is ridiculous, hypocritical, attention seeking and actually only serves to hinder womankind rather than allowing it to progress further.

Tying yourself to a railing outside the Houses of Parliament wearing white trousers, menstrual blood running down your legs, is not the way forward. Neither is propogating a hatred of the male sex. All these women are doing is making the rest of the world think they’re batshit crazy, and making women’s rights a laughing stock.

As a heathen woman, I am generally treated as an equal by the males within our community. Of course there is always going to be the odd misogynistic pig, but you’ll find that anywhere. On the whole, I believe our community strikes a brilliant balance between the sexes. 

On second thoughts, ‘equality’ is probably the wrong word to use for this example… While I wish to be given the same freedoms and respect as men, I accept and embrace that males and females will always be (and have always been) different. The two sexes differ in strengths and weaknesses, not only physically but also cognitively. 

As a lady Ásatrúar, I understand that I will never be man’s true equal. As long as men treat me well and with respect, I am at peace with this. Unfortunately, many women simply cannot accept the above point! 

There is not a single thing about modern feminism that I agree with. In fact, I despise the entire movement! It is petty, childish, ridiculous and extreme. The modern feminist has lost sight of the ultimate goal, and forgotten the history which led to them being given a platform on which to spout their bullshit. They are doing a serious injustice not only to womankind, but also to those wonderful ladies of the past, without whom these idiots would never be able to spew their bile. 

So to conclude, I class myself as an anti-feminist: a woman who is proud to uphold and make full use of the rights she does have, but who is also not afraid to forge her own path. I think my faith has a lot to do with this way of thinking. 

The only way to create positive change is to harness all that passion and energy, and use it sensibly. Sadly, I don’t see that happening anytime soon.

Did The Vikings Take Drugs? 

For years, there has been an assumption that the vikings were regular drug users. This theory has been popularised in the Vikings TV series, in which Ragnar Lothbrok becomes addicted to a mysterious substance procured for him by his Chinese slave. 

But is there any evidence to prove this?

Well, many experts believe that the elite warriors known as Berserkers would take drugs before battle to heighten their senses, and increase stamina and strength. Although there are no records that specify exactly which drug they used, it is widely believed that Berserkers took a variety of mushroom called Amanita Muscaria, which can have a hallucinogenic effect when eaten. These mushrooms were also common in Scandinavia at the time, and were reportedly used by Saami and Siberian tribes too.

Another possible drug of choice could have been a relative of the potato plant – Hyoscyamus Niger. This plant is also related to deadly nightshade, and as such can have a toxic and even fatal effect if ingested in high doses. However, it has been proven to be a hallucinogenic when taken in small doses. Seeds from this plant were discovered in the grave of a high status woman found in Fyrkat, Denmark, along with a pot of ointment and a staff. This could indicate that the woman was perhaps a Völva (seeress). 

So we have established that both Berserkers and Völur could have used drugs in order to alter their states of mind. But is it possible that ordinary vikings or Scandinavian people at the time used drugs for recreational purposes? 

In my opinion, this is entirely plausible. Obviously alcohol would have been readily available and most likely the preferred method of escaping reality, but if these plants were so common, I would imagine that it could help those seeking to converse with the gods or maybe even see into the future. 

We will never know for sure, but one thing is certain: I wouldn’t want to cross paths with a viking who was tripping balls!

Five Ancient Pagan Symbols Misused & Misinterpreted in Modern History 

1. Symbol: Swastika

Pagan origins: An ancient pagan indo-European symbol meaning luck, prosperity, power, protection and sanctity

Modern interpretation: The Nazis stole this symbol and incorporated it into their hateful propaganda

2. Symbol: Icthys

Pagan origins: An ancient pagan symbol for fertility and sexuality

Modern interpretation: Christians now use this symbol to represent the Bible story in which Jesus feeds 5000 people with just one fish and a loaf of bread

3. Symbol: Pentacle

Pagan origins: An ancient pagan symbol representing the five elements

Modern interpretation: Often assumed to be Satanic, thanks to Christian scaremongering 

4. Symbol: Cross

Pagan origins: Once represented the pagan sun god

Modern interpretation: Christians have been using the cross as a symbol for their religion since Roman emperor Constantine, who used it to encourage his pagan subjects to convert to Christianity 


5. Symbol: All-Seeing Eye 

Pagan origins: Originally the eye of Ra in Egyptian mythology 

Modern interpretation: Now synonymous with Freemasons and the Illuminati, it is now used to represent the ‘knowledge of darkness’ which is accessed and kept by a few elites who use it to control the rest of humanity beyond their comprehension 

A Beginner’s Guide to Rune Casting 

I’m no expert on the casting of runes, but I’ve been fascinated by them since childhood (so much so that I have four tattooed on my arm who’s meanings are personal to me!). I compiled this short and easy to understand guide using what I’ve learned through research over the years. I hope it is accurate and that it helps you! A guide to each rune (Elder Futhark) and what they mean is also available in my previous post).

What are runes?

Runes are an ancient form of oracle used by those seeking advice or guidance. They were first used by ancient Germanic and Nordic tribes, and are still popular today. The word ‘rune’ translates to ‘mystery’, ‘whisper’ or ‘secret’. They can be drawn on anything, but the most popular material are stones. The caster typically draws a rune from the runic alphabet (in this case Elder Futhark) on each stone. 

What is the runic alphabet?

There are various different types of runic alphabets, but the most commonly used and recognised is the Elder Futhark. The Elder Futhark contains 24 runes, the first six of which spell out the word ‘Futhark’. As well as each symbol corresponding to a different meaning, they were also once a means of written communication in ancient Scandinavia/northern Europe. Runic inscriptions have been found on items such as jewellery, stones, weapons and other objects dating back to the 3rd century A.D., but it is likely that they existed long before that. 

How are runes used and interpreted?

Runes are usually used by those seeking advice or guidance, and sometimes for predicting future events (although for obvious reasons this is not always an accurate way of foreseeing). It is critical to point out that the runes will never give you all of the answers you seek – they may hint towards them, but its up to the reader to interpret them using their own intuition/common sense! Even if the runes spin a tale of woe and despair, its good for us to acknowledge that individuals have the power to deviate from that path at any time. 

How do runes work?

Rune casting is not the Norse/Germanic equivalent of fortune telling! But if you ask a question of think of a certain issue that is troubling you, both your conscious and subconscious minds will become focussed. When the runes are cast, they are supposed to be choices made by your subconscious mind, therefore enabling you to see the bigger picture with more clarity.

What can you ask the runes?

You can ask pretty much anything, as long as the question is clear in your mind as you do so.

A step-by-step guide to casting runes:

For the purposes of this post, as it is a beginner’s guide, I will use a 3 rune casting which is easier to understand and interpret if you’ve never done so before.

1. Find a quiet place.

2. Clear your mind and focus on the question you wish to ask.

(You can say a prayer or call upon higher spirits to guide you at this point if you wish, but its not essential!).

3. Lay a cloth on the table, into which you will cast your runes. 

4. Randomly select 3 runes from a bag (or by laying them face down, closing your eyes etc.).

5. Place them on the cloth in front of you. Rune 1 should be on the right, with 2 in the middle and 3 on the left. 

Deciphering your runes:

Rune 1 = your situation/problem 

Rune 2 = represents a challenge 

Rune 3 = represents a possible solution 

As you progress, and if you feel that casting is helping you, you can go on to choosing more than three runes. Please note – the more runes you cast, the more difficult they are to interpret, which can actually hinder you as it makes it more complicated!

Whatever your runes tell you, always remember what I said previously – they are open to individual interpretation, and if you don’t like the answers they give you, you always have the option to act differently in order to avoid negative situations! Also please bear in mind that sometimes the runes should not be taken literally, but rather metaphorically.