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Author Topic: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on  (Read 5374 times)

Darkhawk

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #15 on: December 01, 2016, 10:48:49 pm »
Quote from: Friendly_Viking;199639
I am sure you can find a lot of material confirming that Christians did in fact kill or torture people who did not convert.

 
Does this have any relevance to the "Christian holidays were made to help convert the populace" nonsense, then?  Could you please point it out explicitly for those of us in the cheap seats?
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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2016, 12:39:19 am »
Quote from: Friendly_Viking;199639
I did not erase any jewish roots of Christianity nor did I manufacture a false pagan narrative of persecution.

 
Easter as a Christian holiday is derived from Passover, a Jewish festival. The "Easter story" starts with Jesus literally celebrating Passover. Like Mark 14 actually says "hey guys it was Passover and this stuff happened". So if you argue Christians "made it up" or "stole it from pagans" or any of the other (citation needed) memes that go around in the spring, you are overlooking (ie erasing) the actual, in-the-primary-source, Judaism-derived root of the holiday. It's really hard to get more Jewish-derived than a celebration of a celebration of an actual Jewish festival by a group of Jewish people that's still celebrated by actual Jewish people.
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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2016, 12:47:10 am »
Quote from: Darkhawk;199647
Does this have any relevance to the "Christian holidays were made to help convert the populace" nonsense, then?  Could you please point it out explicitly for those of us in the cheap seats?

 
Well you see, what happened was Christians were busy converting Every Single Pagan at swordpoint (because Jesus said he came to bring a sword, so that was important!) and the pagans were like, okay, he hung on tree, Odin hung on tree, maybe they're buds, and the Christians were like noooooooo not like that, Jesus hung on a tree and also got stabbed with a spear, and the pagans were like "did he stab himself? because Odin stabbed himself" and the Christians were like "wait what? no! he offered himself as a sacrifice." and the pagans were like "yeah yeah but what kind of sacrifice is it if he's not doing the hard part himself" and the Christians were like "um... hey look! behind you! a giant rabbit leaving eggs!" and when the pagans turned around to look the Christians killed them and then decided they should celebrate the time Jesus got hung on a tree because clearly that would appeal to pagans.

I have a degree in religion so you know I know what I'm talking about.
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Beryl

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2016, 03:10:24 am »
Quote from: Son of the Norse;199641
I can confirm this.  My spouse's great grandmother (who was alive in 1993) who was 104 when I met her told me of when she was a small girl and the christian missionary types tried to force english and christ on the little kids.  They used to make her pick up hot stones out of the Umu (underground oven) when she was accused of not "seeming" to take the lords pray with enough seriousness... Repulsive!

 
Okay but, er, what does this have to do with what this thread is about i.e. conversions of the Norse pagans to Christianity? (Or indeed whether St Patrick put Irish pagans to death or whether other early conversions to Christianity were mostly people going "yeah, seems legit" or going along with their kings/leaders?)

Beryl

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2016, 03:25:27 am »
Quote from: Friendly_Viking;199639
I am sure you can find a lot of material confirming that Christians did in fact kill or torture people who did not convert.

Sure, but to be fair, quite a lot of it is neopagans regurgitating the same old nonsense they read in their first Wicca 101 book, and that in turn is based on, at best, fairly outdated/discredited historical ideas (Margaret Murray and so on), as is much of the stuff about "oh, Christmas trees are actually a survival of Ancient But Generic Pagan Belief"* and "Easter eggs actually derive from Ancient Pagan Blahdiblah". Not everything that's written in a book or article is equally well-researched/sourced.

Again, I don't think anyone's saying *all* conversions were peaceful or that *no* Christian festivals were deliberately dressed up a bit in local custom to make them more appealing to the local converts, but there's plenty of evidence that the neopagan notions of all conversions being forcible and bloody and of all festivals being *slathered* in pagan trimmings to trick the locals into going along with it is probably at best an exaggeration.

Sure, some of the regional variances in celebrations of Christian festivals probably date back to pagan things ** but that in no way proves that it was done by the Invading Christianizers*** - it was just as likely to have been people going "okay this Jesus dude sounds cool, but we'd like to keep our big dinner and party around this time, how about we dedicate it to Jesus instead?"



*protip, if someone says something about pre-Christian pagan *belief*, particularly if they don't specify *which* pagans? They are probably talking crap - many pagan societies kept no real record of their beliefs, quite a lot left very little record of their practices or festivals - most of what we "know" about, say, Celtic belief is either based on what we can reckon from their surviving legends (mostly, if not all, recorded by Christians) or was just made up at some point by neopagans or Victorians who decided every folksy countryside tradition was some sort of The Ancients Believed This clue. And if they talk about "pagan belief" rather than, say, Norse belief or Irish, then they're usually just smooshing all Olde Worlde Pagans into one big group that conveniently believed more or less what they believe now.

**(although some probably also just come from, like, hundreds of years of different communities developing different ways of celebrating stuff pretty much in isolation - just like how Sephardic and Ashkenazi Jews have different ideas about what you can and can't eat at Pesach)

*** who, let's be realistic, would be just as likely to want to keep their festivals pure and Christian and free of demonic influences - remember, other gods would have mostly been seen as demons, tricking the Feeble Minded Pagans into cavorting with them, so the bulk of the "Christians based Mary off Isis to appeal to pagans" just makes no real sense
« Last Edit: December 02, 2016, 03:26:17 am by Beryl »

Chatelaine

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #20 on: December 02, 2016, 05:38:45 am »
Quote from: MadZealot;199636
And all of Christendom rejoiced with ass-trumpets and sulfurous eggfarts.  For 3 days.


Never mind what Greeks break the long fast on.
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Darkhawk

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #21 on: December 02, 2016, 10:36:47 am »
Quote from: Beryl;199667
or was just made up at some point by neopagans or Victorians who decided every folksy countryside tradition was some sort of The Ancients Believed This clue. And if they talk about "pagan belief" rather than, say, Norse belief or Irish, then they're usually just smooshing all Olde Worlde Pagans into one big group that conveniently believed more or less what they believe now.


Like?  The Easter Bunny (in the form of a Hare) is first attested/recorded in 1682 among German Lutherans.  Probably started a bit sooner, but nobody mentioned it in a surviving record before then.

So not only is it made up at some point, the likelihood of it being a pagan survival is maybe a bit low given the rough THOUSAND YEARS between its development and Christianisation.

Christmas trees:  15th or 16th century Germany.  It's possible that they derive in part from the religious requirement to have some sort of plant life (symbolising life) in church sanctuaries at all times during the year except IIRC Good Friday and Holy Saturday; it's also possible that someone just thought it was cool and all their friends started doing it.  Not exported anywhere else until after 1850.


So, in short: many of these "pagan survivals" that are trotted out to justify the "Christians stole our holidays" stuff were, as far as we can tell, invented by Lutherans.  Or at least post-Reformation Germans.  They are Germanic Christian folklore, not Christian-in-general folklore, and if there is any pagan survival in it it is a thousand years attenuated from actual paganism.

So basically the logic is that a Mediterranean-based population (early Christians were found in Palestine, Greece, Egypt, and Rome) with a liturgical calendar and traditions based on the Jewish calendar and traditions (and having extensive arguments about how open to make those traditions, primarily about circumcision and food strictures) and possible (but often argued against) influence from other religions they were in actual contact with adopted northern European customs that didn't exist yet in order to appeal to northern European pagans that they at least originally had neither contact with nor power to influence.
as the water grinds the stone
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Chatelaine

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #22 on: December 02, 2016, 06:52:11 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;199681
Christmas trees:  15th or 16th century Germany.  It's possible that they derive in part from the religious requirement to have some sort of plant life (symbolising life) in church sanctuaries at all times during the year except IIRC Good Friday and Holy Saturday; it's also possible that someone just thought it was cool and all their friends started doing it.  Not exported anywhere else until after 1850.


Another plausible origin story.
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MadZealot

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #23 on: December 02, 2016, 07:19:29 pm »
Quote from: Chatelaine;199672
Never mind what Greeks break the long fast on.


Sounds tasty.  But not as much gasstric impact, therefore not as fun.  :whis:

Interesting tidbit re: the red "Jesus' blood" eggs.  I'd wondered if that were really a thing.
Spider Man 3 never happened. And Epstein didn't kill himself.

Oíche

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #24 on: December 04, 2016, 07:41:01 pm »
Quote from: Friendly_Viking;199599
Despite the historical inaccuracies I love this show. Christianity was forced upon people. Most people did not accept it willingly. Take the story of St Patrick for example, he killed people who wouldn't convert in Ireland.



 
The myth of Patrick slaying druids is a later addition, not to mention that the whole 'Patrick slayed the pagans violently' idea is very much a modern invention. Christianity came to Ireland quite some time beforehand and is thought to have spread via trade. There's little to no evidence of violent conversion here I'm afraid.

I quite enjoy Vikings, it's fun when I see some of my friends on it as extras too :D:
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hraefngar

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #25 on: January 04, 2017, 09:17:51 pm »
Quote from: Son of the Norse;199581
If you watch the TV show Vikings (and even thought we know that historically it has many flaws), what are your thoughts on some of the main characters conversion (slowly), from Heathenry to christianity?

 
It's just a  TV show. One filled with pretty people of  both genders and some stunning locales.  Nice entertainment, but I take nothing in it seriously. ;)

The "Heathen" religion they depict is one that is very slanted to warrior values and Valhalla and such.  There are many layers of Heathen religion, but the one they depict has been dumb downed and narrowed to conform to a "warrior" mentality view.

Son of the Norse

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #26 on: January 04, 2017, 11:00:00 pm »
Quote from: hraefngar;200978
It's just a  TV show. One filled with pretty people of  both genders and some stunning locales.  Nice entertainment, but I take nothing in it seriously. ;)


 
SPOILER:

I look forward to tonight's show (still an hour away for me) here in the NW.  Look forward to how the writer handles "life without Ragnar".
~Son of the Norse

Son of the Norse

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2017, 10:20:40 pm »
Quote from: Son of the Norse;200988
SPOILER:

 Look forward to how the writer handles "life without Ragnar".


I love that they are now getting to the historical part of the early Heathens.. I love this show! :)
~Son of the Norse

OldenwildeHP

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #28 on: January 06, 2017, 05:07:02 pm »
Quote from: Beryl;199667
Sure, but to be fair, quite a lot of it is neopagans regurgitating the same old nonsense they read in their first Wicca 101 book, and that in turn is based on, at best, fairly outdated/discredited historical ideas (Margaret Murray and so on), as is much of the stuff about "oh, Christmas trees are actually a survival of Ancient But Generic Pagan Belief"* and "Easter eggs actually derive from Ancient Pagan Blahdiblah".

 
Before this thread settles back at last on its original subject, I think its extended slew of sarcastic would-be debunking of Pagan history deserves a serious rebuttal instead of a** jokes. I'll stick to two topics:

1) The Christian holiday calendar WAS profoundly influenced by and tailored to European Pagan traditions, especially to the cycle we now call the Wheel of the Year -- and that's not according to Margaret Murray or Victorian romanticizers, but modern academic scholars such as Philippe Walter (Christianity: The Origins of a Pagan Religion, tr. Jon E. Graham, Inner Traditions, 2006). Though I've read this book twice, I'm just going to quote from the publisher's description:

"[Walter] reveals how Christian mythology of the Middle Ages had more to do with paganism than the Bible:
• Identifies pagan deities that were incorporated into each of the saints

• Shows how all the major holidays on the Christian calendar are modeled on long-standing pagan traditions

"This extensive study of the Christian mythology that animated medieval Europe shows that this mythology is primarily of pagan inspiration and that very little of it comes from the Bible. The fact that Christianity grafted itself onto earlier pagan worship was no mystery to the Church Fathers, Philippe Walter explains. Pagan elements were incorporated into the Christian faith on the advice of Pope Gregory the Great, who told Saint Augustine of Canterbury that rather than tear down the pagan temples in Britain, he should instead add the pagan rituals into the mix of Christian practices, thus providing an easy transition to the new religion. It was simply a matter of convincing the populace to slightly redirect their focus to include Jesus."

Pope Gregory's is the peaceful version, of course: Anyone who pretends that the threat of execution, boycott, taking away of your children and your lands, and similar persecution isn't the more usual driving force behind conversion from polytheism to monotheism hasn't paid any attention to the documented history of Canaan, Saxony, the Baltic lands, Arabic Petra, the New World, etc., etc. And, for that matter, modern-day red-state America.

2) Easter eggs ARE a pre-Christian Pagan tradition, as demonstrated by the citations for this quote at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Easter_egg:

"The practice of decorating eggshells as part of spring rituals is ancient,[11] with decorated, engraved ostrich eggs found in Africa which are 60,000 years old.[12] In the pre-dynastic period of Egypt and the early cultures of Mesopotamia and Crete, eggs were associated with death and rebirth, as well as with kingship, with decorated ostrich eggs, and representations of ostrich eggs in gold and silver, were commonly placed in graves of the ancient Sumerians and Egyptians as early as 5,000 years ago.[13]"
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OldenwildeHP

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Re: Do any of you watch Vikings on TV...if so, what are your thoughts on...
« Reply #29 on: January 06, 2017, 09:19:41 pm »
Quote from: OldenwildeHP;201089
Before this thread settles back at last on its original subject...

 
To which end, as a latecomer fan of this series, I have a question for you all: How do you think it's treated the volva character, the sometime Queen of Kattegat who is a Norse Witch? And which episode or episodes best show her doing her magical thing?
"You\'re not alone -- the majority of the world\'s people believe that it\'s neither men nor money that rules the earth but magic." -- The Goodly Spellbook

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