A teacher of religious history once defined religion as "a belief aimed at the conservation of something of value."
One might wonder what it is then that those who have an interest in preserving Odinism want to conserve. Before detailing that, it is necessary to give a brief description of Odinism itself: where it came from and where it is going. Why would any sane person want to preserve that which disappeared for all intents and purposes many hundreds of years ago?
Odinism is the organic faith of the Indo-European peoples. The people lived by a simple code. It was one which served them well and presented a healthy, multi-dimensional way of looking at the world and one's environment.
Our early ancestors were concerned with honor, courage, chivalry, and loyalty. One might call Odinism a martial religion in that valor is considered to be a very important attribute. Equally it may also be called a peaceful fertility religion. It also has a mystical path and shamanistic tradition. In short, it is a philosophy and a way of life which encompasses all that we have been and all that we will be.
Independent thought is a primary precept of Odinism. There are no leaders or followers in the traditional sense of those terms. Some individuals may choose to invest more of themselves in the religion than others. That does not automatically imply any sort of compulsory leadership. Each person is expected to think for him or herself.
(Continued on next page)
IN THIS ISSUE:
Satanism - Fact and Fiction
Procter & Gamble Wins Lawsuit
Follow-up in Ca. Ritual Abuse Case
And MUCH more ...
Odinism does not provide any prescribed answers to some of the more difficult questions we face. There is no central authority to answer questions that, by all rights, should be answered with individual thought and meditation. Hence, there will be as many answers as there are individuals.
Unlike Christianity, Odinism has no such concepts as Original Sin or the need to prepare for the afterlife. There is no "turn-the-other-cheek" wimpishness. Odinists do not "fear" their gods. The gods and goddesses in the pantheon exist both as exemplifications of the forces of nature and as examples. They have very human attributes and, as is evidenced by Ragnorok, they are as subject to defeat as `the ordinary people'.
There has been some concern over the past several years with the seeming racial hatred fostered by certain segments of the Odinist community. We have such charmers as David Lane, convicted of the homicide of Denver talk show host, Alan Berg. Runes and other Odinic symbology appear in the publications of all sorts of white supremacist groups from the KKK to Tom Metzger's WAR. One can see skinheads wearing Odinic symbols on their tee-shirts and applying them to placards. Even such pillars of the community as Robert Miles have chosen to call themselves Odinists and there is a community in northern California who calls itself The NS Kindred.
The NS, of course, stands for National Socialism. The motto of the group is "Where the Folk is, Hitler is." There are other examples that fall even further into the realm of utter strangeness.
There is a racialist aspect to Odinism only in that one is proud of his or her heritage. One understands that every group has its own special talents to bring to the whole. It is not an "egalitarian" philosophy in the sense that there is no notion of sameness. We are not all the same while we may be equal. We are all vital strands in the web of existence. There is no racial hatred within the religion although some have chosen to use it that way, usually for their own ends or to meet their own agenda.
It is not unusual for those who feel inadequate in their own lives to glom onto any idea that will relieve them of responsibility. It is far easier to find a substitute or a scapegoat than it is to take responsibility for one's own strengths or weaknesses. It has gone on from the beginning of time and Odinism is not exempt from being used by those sorts of people.
If these people were to study Odinic philosophy in depth, they would find it demands a great deal of independent thought and personal responsibility. Instead they take one aspect which meets their needs and ignore the rest.
Odinist religious philosophy supports the idea of a society in which the individual is not intimidated because he or she fears the retribution of an all-powerful god.
Nor is the Odinist religious philosophy a "conquering" philosophy. There is no desire to conquer other lands or peoples. There is no place for hate. The desire is to live with others peacefully; each side respecting the traditions of the other.
One could apply the Wiccan rede "If it harm none, do as ye will." Odinists live by an inborn "golden rule" to preserve those assets in which abide the meaning of life itself.
Roe Case Delved Into Ritual Abuse, Repressed Memories And Disorders
The Orange County Register
April 14, 1991 - Pages A1 & A26
In the landmark civil case that ended Friday, two daughters accused a Mission Viejo grandmother of subjecting them to a lifetime of satanic terror and sexual abuse.
The women claimed their mother and late father introduced them to a secret cult at infancy. Their litany of alleged horrors was unrelenting: human sacrifices of kidnapped transients; baby stabbings; animal mutilations; torture by electric shock.
The mother, identified in court documents as Ellen Roe, said she was bewildered by the allegations. Roe said her family was a normal, healthy one until her daughters started therapy three years ago.
An Orange County Superior Court jury returned a mixed verdict that may further muddle the satanic debate. Jurors found the mother negligent but also found that she neither intentionally harmed her daughters nor her 11-year-old grand-daughter. They awarded no monetary damages.
Jurors said afterwards they believed the daughters had been abused, but they weren't sure who was responsible.
The Roe case delved into the largely uncharted legal area involving ritual abuse, repressed memories and multiple personality disorders.
Both sides -- those who believe in the existence of satanic cults and those who seek to debunk ritual abuse claims -- have followed the case closely because they believe the outcome will affect whether other alleged victims follow a similar path.
At trial's end, both sides declared victory.
PROCTER & GAMBEL WINS SATANISM RUMORS CASE
(RNS) A Kansas couple has been ordered to pay $75,000 to the Procter & Gamble Co. for perpetuating the false rumor that the firm's trademark logo is a Satanic symbol.
The corporation, based in Cincinnati, has a trademark featuring a circle enclosing a crescent man-in-the-moon looking on 13 stars. Rumors of the alleged Satanic significance of the symbol began circulating 10 years ago and have persisted despite the company's repeated denials and statements by Roman Catholic and evangelical Protestant leaders denouncing the rumor as false.
In July 1990, the firm filed a libel suit against James and Linda Newton, charging that the Kansas couple made statements and distributed literature perpetuating the rumor. The Newtons are distributors of rival Amway products.
In announcing the court judgment, Procter & Gamble quoted the Newtons as saying "The ugly rumors linking Procter & Gamble to Satanism are completely false. After our own investigation, we have concluded that the Satanism rumors are lies, and we are issuing this statement to help Procter & Gamble maintain its fine reputation."
A Procter & Gamble spokesman said, "These ridiculous lies have cost the company a lot of time and energy over the past 10 years. We continue to pursue legal recourse against those spreading such rumors, and we will file additional lawsuits if necessary."
(Ed. note: Good for P&G! We hope that more of this type of case will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law!)
ILLINOIS PASSES NEW LAWS
The State of Illinois recently passed HB 1883, which reads, in part, "... an amendment to the Illinois Juvenile Court Act of 1987, ... Chapter 37 of the criminal code, adding the offense of `inducement to commit suicide' (section 12-31). A person commits the offense ... when he coerces another to commit suicide and the other commits suicide as a direct result of the coercion, and he exercises substantial control over the other person through the use of: physical control, the use of psychological pressure, or through the use of ... religious, political, social, philosophical, or other principles..."
The Illinois Code of corrections section 5--5--3.2(13) (b)(6) now states that: "... misconduct committed as part of a ceremony, rite, or ostensible religious, fraternal, or social group ..." can be construed as aggravating circumstances used to lengthen sentences upon conviction.
(Thanks to the CAR-PGa for supplying us with this information from their CAR-PGa HQ Event Report, June-August 1991.)
SATANISM - FACT AND FICTION
Reprinted by permission of the "Dark Lily" newsletter of the Left Hand Path, London,England
(Ed. Note: In the interests of keeping our readers as informed as possible, we have included this article from a Satanist publication. Since none of the CWR staff are Satanists, we do not feel qualified to speak on what is and is not Satanism and prefer to let them do their own explaining. We hope you find this article informative.)
A waning moon faintly illuminates the shadowy scene. Black candles flicker and the stifling smoke of incense wafts through the air. The participants, clad in black hooded robes, are waiting ...
Standard scenario, Satanism as presented by fiction writers. There may be a goat-like figure perched above the altar, or a naked virgin sprawled on the altar, a newborn baby to be sacrificed or a chalice containing unpleasant liquid to be drunk like fine wine by the deluded congregation. Long ago, it may have been shocking, but nowadays, it merely sounds rather dull and pointless.
Since Satanism has for so long been misrepresented by the media, it is inevitable that the misunderstandings persist, even by would-be recruits. "I feel drawn to the Lord Lucifer, but I don't see the point of having Black Masses" said a recently received letter. Neither do we.
If that is a disappointment, reconsider your own attitude. No one here is going to tell you that orgies, Black Masses, etc. are "wrong", but they have nothing to do with attaining Occult power, and that attainment is our main purpose.
Beyond a certain level, you would make more progress sitting alone in a silent room than playacting with robes, candles, and other impedimenta.
One of our members recently spoke to a reporter and was trying to explain as briefly as possible what we were about. "But this isn't Satanism." said the disappointed journalist. "Do you dance nude around a blazing cauldron, have you ever conducted a human sacrifice, do you have a naked woman lying on the altar?" When all three questions were answered in the negative, the reporter said that what his editor wanted was a "traditional" Satanist group and rang off.
He had no difficulty in finding such a group, of course, and the resultant article and photographs further propagated the "traditional view" (which is simply the media's tradition).
Centuries ago, Black Masses may have served a useful purpose, in psychologically liberating the participants from the state religion which overshadowed their lives. Therefore, they have become obsolete. The liberation is now done inside one's own head, which is much more difficult but an essential achievement.
THE W.I.C.C.A. LETTERS MYTH
by Kerr Cuhulain
This urban legend originated with California juvenile officer, Deputy Dave Gaerin. He and his associates in 1981 allegedly intercepted documents from a convention of the "Witches' International Coven Council Association" in Mexico. This phantom organization allegedly produced a political blueprint for an international Satanic take-over which was supposedly distributed in seven letters.
1. There is not, and never has been, any organization known as the "Witches' International Coven Council Association," nor is there any similar organization under any other name:
2. No evidence exist to indicate that any such meeting ever occurred in Mexico, or anywhere else;
3. The "W.I.C.C.A. Letters bear a striking resemblence to the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion", a famous forgery that first appeared in Russia in 1903. It was purported to be a series of seven lectures, intercepted by the authorities, to a secret international Jewish government plotting to take over the world. It is still used by anti-Semites as "proof" of such a conspiracy despite its fraudulent nature. It appears that someone dusted off this old myth and adapted it to their own purposes.
(Ed. note: The "W.I.C.C.A. Letters" first appeared in Passport Magazine's special edition on "America's Best Kept Secret". There is now an accompanying video of the same name available and being recommended by some organizations as training material. CWR will be reviewing the magazine in a later issue.)
The following fictitious situation was created by the United Wiccan Church as an example of how erroneous information could lead an investigator to the wrong conclusions. Read it through and develop a possible solution to the situation. Then read the solution which follows to see how close you came.
At approximately 8 a.m., a park employee reported he had found a nude female body in a forested area of a city park.
One of your police units was dispatched to the scene to investigate this report. Upon arrival, the detectives found the following items:
a) A nude, caucasian female lying face down in a dirt clearing approximately 45 feet from a fire road. Her throat had been cut from the front of the throat to the spinal column. Her hands were bound behind her back with a red knotted cord. The body had a silver-colored chain around her neck. On this chain was a silver-colored five-pointed star within a circle, arranged so that two of its points point upward.
The female was approximately 25-30 years of age, had brown hair and brown eyes, was approximately 5'6" in height and approximately 120-130 pounds in weight. The body had no marks, scars, or tattoos except for the figures "FFF" tattooed above the front genital area and several recent bruises on the frontal stomach, genital, upper inner leg, and anal areas.
b) A doubleedged knife, approximately 3-1/2" in length, was found approximately 4 feet from the body. The blade of the knife had suspected blood stains on both sides. The blade was engraved on both of its flat sides with letters and symbols of an unknown language.
c) An area of approximately 6 feet surrounding the body shows apparent marks of a struggle and suspected blood stains.
d) A large, flat-topped rock was located approximately 3 feet from the body. The rock is approximately 3 feet by 8 feet in width and length. Upon the top of this rock, the following items were found:
1) A black spring-back binder, containing several pages of tan paper written upon in an unknown language.
2) Two bones approximately 14 inches in length.
3) A horned animal skull.
4) Two brass-colored candlesticks, containing two partially burned black candles.
e) Approximately 2 feet from the body was a stone-lined fire pit approximately 3 feet in diameter, containing what appeared to be the remains of a small wood fire. These ashes were cold to the touch.
f) One set of boot-type prints leading from the dirt road to the area of the body, and returning to the dirt road. The only other footprints in the area belong to the victim.
g) Dirt fire road.
h) A blue backpack was found approximately 12 feet from the body. A woman's blouse, blue jeans, socks, and shoes were found neatly folded on top of the backpack. No undergarments were found in the subsequent search of the area.
i) Several trees surround the clearing in which the body (a) and circle (h) are located. The clearing is not visible from the road (g).
The victim was raped and murdered by a passer-by who happened onto the victim, who was engaged in a Wiccan ritual to aid a friend with a difficult pregnancy.
The victim was nude as she is a member of a tradition of Wicca that performs their rituals in the nude (skyclad).
Her throat was cut with her own ritual knife (the symbols on the blade indicate that it has been consecrated to a particular tradition of Wicca).
Her hands were bound behind her back with her own ritual cord.
The silver five-pointed star, arranged so that two of its points are uppermost, within a circle, is a talisman that she was a second degree Priestess in her tradition of Wicca.
The tattoos of "FFF" in the genital area stand for "Flags, Flax, and Fodder" (the three magickal elements sacred to the Wiccan Goddess). They were tattooed in the genital area so as to conceal them, as they indicate her membership in a Wiccan group.
The large, flat-topped rock was used as a Wiccan altar.
The black binder was the victim's "Book of Shadows".
The two bones are ritually uncrossed to aid in child-birth.
The horned animal skull is a symbol of the "horned hunting God" of Wicca.
The black candles were being used in honor of the "Dark Mother" (or "Grandmother"), who is the protector of women during childbirth.
Fire pits are commonly used in Wiccan rituals. The fact that the ashes are cold to the touch indicates that she, and probably her group, had used this site before, which may be the reason that she had felt that the site was safe for a skyclad ritual.
The 18-foot diameter of the circle indicates the site was built to be used by a group, rather than an individual.
The clothing neatly folded on top of the backpack indicates she had disrobed herself in preparation for a private ritual. The fact that there were no undergarments indicates that she had taken her ritual bath at home and had only put on sufficient outer garments to get to the ritual site.
Whenever you encounter crime scenes with items of evidence such as found in this case study, you should consult with a reliable and knowledgeable source of information on Pagan groups and religions prior to attempting to draw provable facts. The United Wiccan Church, a private, non-profit organization under the laws of the State of California, can be reached through P.O. Box 16025, North Hollywood, CA 91625-6025.
Witchcraft, Satanism, and Occult Crime: Who's Who and What's What Third Edition, Jan. 1991 - By Otter Zell
This 20-page pamphlet, compiled by Otter Zell, coeditor of Green Egg magazine, is a series of monologues and position papers by a wide range of authorities on Paganism, occult crime and alternative religions. The purpose is to provide the professional investigator with unbiased reference material on the above-listed subjects. Mr. Zell accomplishes this task admirably and the document is an invaluable addition to any investigator's library.
This publication contains articles and letters, an extensive glossary of terms and symbols, and a resources and reference list. Contributors include Kerr Cuhulain and Hal Mansfield, who should be familiar to our readers. Other prominent authorities found here are J. Gordon Melton of the Institute for the Study of American Religion and Sandi Daly Gallant of the San Francisco Police Department, whose letter is specifically important in that she recants much of her previous position on Pagan/Wiccan involvement with criminal activity.
Any law enforcement department would be well served by adding this book to their library and making it available to those personnel involved in investigating occult related matters.
by John Kuma
From the Druid's Progress #7
As for the professional "ex-Satanic High Priests," they seem to be short on evidence of their claims too. Oddly enough, although some of these preachers have confessed to multiple felonies on nation-wide television, none has ever been arrested, nor have any of them gone to local police and confessed their crimes. Subsequently, none has ever served prison time for deeds that would normally put them away for the rest of their lives. Apparently, if you claim to have reformed yourself and become a good Christian, you no longer need to pay your debt to society, no matter how terrible the crimes you've admitted. Any of you attending public lectures by such "ex-Satanists" might want to being this up with local law enforcement officers and, if possible under local laws, make citizen's arrests - I for one would love to see such liars forced to testify under oath in a court of law."
by Isaac Bonewits
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