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Author Topic: Afterlife  (Read 1772 times)

minus

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Afterlife
« on: January 02, 2017, 08:13:24 am »
I'm still a beginner to all of this and have been recently researching the norse and celtic side of things.

The problem I have especially with norse mythology is I don't believe in the concept of valhalla or any equivalent.

I believe that after someone has died that they continue to exist on this earth i.e similar to a ghost and they can choose to reveal or not reveal themselves at will. I beieve that such spirit doesn't go into a new body but remains in this form indefinitely.

I have had experiences which I believe has been from deceased family and to me it makes much more sense that they are close by than in some unknown place.

I find that to me this is how the celtic side appeals to me much more as Samhain makes perfect sense and the thin veil is what allows us to see/contact the spirits much easier because if they were somewhere else i.e valhalla or an equivalent then they would not be able to visit so easily.

The question I have is, is it possible to be a celtic polytheist and hold the views I have?

Thanks

Minus

(sorry for long rant)

Megatherium

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2017, 02:21:28 pm »
Quote from: minus;200785
I'm still a beginner to all of this and have been recently researching the norse and celtic side of things.

The problem I have especially with norse mythology is I don't believe in the concept of valhalla or any equivalent.

I believe that after someone has died that they continue to exist on this earth i.e similar to a ghost and they can choose to reveal or not reveal themselves at will. I beieve that such spirit doesn't go into a new body but remains in this form indefinitely.

I have had experiences which I believe has been from deceased family and to me it makes much more sense that they are close by than in some unknown place.

 
Unfortunately, I cannot speak with any significant degree of confidence about Celtic traditions, but I can speak a bit about your comments regarding Norse/Germanic traditions.

The idea of Valhalla as an otherworldly place people go when they die is probably not a concept which was very common in historical Heathen cultures. It is likely that conceptions of the afterlife are actually fairly to close to your beliefs. It seems that people were often buried near to their community, and were considered to have an ongoing connection with and influence on their family and friends after death. You mentioned the idea that it makes more sense to you that people are close by rather than in some far away place - this is an idea that historical Heathens may well have also subscribed to.

Here is a fairly good article that goes a bit more into depth in this concept:

https://www.realheathenry.com/the-valhalla-myth/
My views are one that speaks to freedom.
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minus

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2017, 03:01:31 pm »
Thanks for your reply, I read that link and find it to be very informative.

If anyone else has anymore to add I'd be glad to hear from you.

Minus

Quote from: Megatherium;200802
Unfortunately, I cannot speak with any significant degree of confidence about Celtic traditions, but I can speak a bit about your comments regarding Norse/Germanic traditions.

The idea of Valhalla as an otherworldly place people go when they die is probably not a concept which was very common in historical Heathen cultures. It is likely that conceptions of the afterlife are actually fairly to close to your beliefs. It seems that people were often buried near to their community, and were considered to have an ongoing connection with and influence on their family and friends after death. You mentioned the idea that it makes more sense to you that people are close by rather than in some far away place - this is an idea that historical Heathens may well have also subscribed to.

Here is a fairly good article that goes a bit more into depth in this concept:

https://www.realheathenry.com/the-valhalla-myth/

Megatherium

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2017, 03:42:55 pm »
Quote from: minus;200803
Thanks for your reply, I read that link and find it to be very informative.

If anyone else has anymore to add I'd be glad to hear from you.

Minus


I dug up an FAQ from a Celtic reconstructionist group for you. Of course, they don't speak for every modern practitioner of Celtic religion, but I think this may be helpful. It looks like reincarnation, residence in another plane of existence, and continued exitence close to the community may have all been a part of historical afterlife beliefs.

http://www.paganachd.com/faq/theology.html#death
My views are one that speaks to freedom.
-George W. Bush

Obsidia

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2017, 05:30:48 am »
Quote from: minus;200785
I'm still a beginner to all of this and have been recently researching the norse and celtic side of things.

The problem I have especially with norse mythology is I don't believe in the concept of valhalla or any equivalent.

I believe that after someone has died that they continue to exist on this earth i.e similar to a ghost and they can choose to reveal or not reveal themselves at will. I beieve that such spirit doesn't go into a new body but remains in this form indefinitely.

I have had experiences which I believe has been from deceased family and to me it makes much more sense that they are close by than in some unknown place.

I find that to me this is how the celtic side appeals to me much more as Samhain makes perfect sense and the thin veil is what allows us to see/contact the spirits much easier because if they were somewhere else i.e valhalla or an equivalent then they would not be able to visit so easily.

The question I have is, is it possible to be a celtic polytheist and hold the views I have?

Thanks

Minus

(sorry for long rant)

 
The ancient Norse and other peoples believed that we have different souls, not just one soul that enters a domain.
Not everyone is going to go to Valhalla, according o the Eddas, some people may go to different dwellings. There is a place in the sea ruled by goddess Ran for those who've drowned or need to be with loved ones that died at sea. Some who died of old age or illnesses may go elsewhere. Only warriors who died in battle may enter Valhalla if chosen.
Some of it sounds too glorious for modern people doesn't it. But then so does arriving at Pearly Gates sound far away. I don't like the idea of the Christian heaven or hell at all, and considering the amount of people in heaven I choose hell if that's what I was offered. Be among demonkind instead of among light people who I find pretty frightening.

OldenwildeHP

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2017, 09:13:38 pm »
Quote from: minus;200785

I have had experiences which I believe has been from deceased family and to me it makes much more sense that they are close by than in some unknown place.

 
Instead of trying to conform your understanding of the afterlife to a particular mythos or religious doctrine, approach it the other way around: Start with your experiences, and see how various myths and doctrines do or don't conform to those. Don't think of Paganism as a set of beliefs you adopt as in Christianity or Islam, but as a way of encountering and interacting with the vast reality that surrounds our little mortal bubbles.

You've encountered the ghosts of your ancestors, so you presumably now have experienced the objective fact that people's souls or essences live on beyond their bodies. Now you can look to Celtic or Norse or other Pagan traditions for ways to acknowledge and honor your ancestors' souls.

But trying to understand death by reading myths is like trying to understand life by reading novels. They can illuminate, but can't substitute for, actual experience. If you want to know what the afterlife is really like for the dead, instead of speculating about it or trying to wrest literal answers from the metaphors that myth and religion use to symbolize a realm that just can't be captured by everyday words, you're better off asking people who have actually experienced death and lived to tell, or reading their personal accounts, or communicating directly with the "other side" through the great variety of magical and, nowadays, technological methods that are available.

I can vouch that all the myths and doctrines about the afterlife I studied for years were just pieces of a puzzle that never came together until a close friend confided to me her own near-death experience, and others told me theirs. Only then did stories like Valhalla and the Summerlands and Plato's Myth of Er finally begin to make sense.
"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

Lumpino

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2017, 12:11:55 am »
Quote from: minus;200785
...........................
The problem I have especially with norse mythology is I don't believe in the concept of valhalla or any equivalent.

I believe that after someone has died that they continue to exist on this earth i.e similar to a ghost and they can choose to reveal or not reveal themselves at will. I beieve that such spirit doesn't go into a new body but remains in this form indefinitely.

..................
Thanks

Minus

(sorry for long rant)



Different beliefs have different views on afterlife. Interesting  opinion have  Eastern or some ancient doctrines (see Mysteries). That there are many different spiritual worlds an a man could be in next life by his actions and thoughts in a different spiritual world or as a ghost.

Sorcha

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Re: Afterlife
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2017, 09:23:54 pm »
Quote from: minus;200785
I'm still a beginner to all of this and have been recently researching the norse and celtic side of things.

The problem I have especially with norse mythology is I don't believe in the concept of valhalla or any equivalent.

I believe that after someone has died that they continue to exist on this earth i.e similar to a ghost and they can choose to reveal or not reveal themselves at will. I beieve that such spirit doesn't go into a new body but remains in this form indefinitely.

I have had experiences which I believe has been from deceased family and to me it makes much more sense that they are close by than in some unknown place.

I find that to me this is how the celtic side appeals to me much more as Samhain makes perfect sense and the thin veil is what allows us to see/contact the spirits much easier because if they were somewhere else i.e valhalla or an equivalent then they would not be able to visit so easily.

The question I have is, is it possible to be a celtic polytheist and hold the views I have?

Thanks

Minus

(sorry for long rant)

 
My understanding of Celtic belief (admittedly rough) is that it's a cycle. It's not QUITE reencarnation in the way at least I often think of it. Basically, when a person dies here they switch to the afterlife, but the afterlife is just more life, and the other world is very close to this world. You could definitely view it as simply stepping into a parallel world, and the veil seems to be very, very thin. People in the other world live full lives there as well (it's not a destination). When they live out their lives there, they can come back, although it doesn't seem that everyone does.

I think you could probably quite easily fit your belief about the afterlife to a Celtic mindset; unless you're a strict reconstructionist. And since nobody has been to the other world and back in recent times that I know of, I don't see how you could reconstruct it. So go for it. :)


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