Talk:Heathenry in the United States

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Kennewick man[edit]

the article presenting the "Kennewick man" incident as if it was a serious controversy is a disgrace. Google McNallen and Solutrean, and you will find what this is about, lots of articles on sites like and making out that "Native" Americans stole country from the Caucasians they murdered! (sic!!) Now this is so far over the brink of sanity or decency that we can, for whatever it is worth, discuss this on McNallen's article, but if we are going to discuss this under "Asatru", it should come with some independent commentary putting it in proper perspective and firmly placing it under the "racism" header where it belongs. --dab (𒁳) 15:19, 21 April 2009 (UTC)

Agree that it is undue weight to have a section on McNallen's outrageous, racist claims as if they were taken seriously. It should be under racism if a serious number of Asatruar agreed with him (eek!) and laid at his doorstep alone if he was largely alone in this campaign. I see it's already been added to his article, so does it still need to be here at all? Anywhere this is included, the contrasting view needs to be covered. - Kathryn NicDhàna 05:28, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done The material has been removed from this article. SilkTork *YES! 00:23, 21 March 2011 (UTC)


Ok, what about this? According to my best judgement, "Theodism" doesn't pass WP:NOTE (WP:ORG) for a standalone article. They deserve mention under "Germanic neopaganism in the United States" though. This is the closest we have to a "Germanic neopaganism in the United States" article, but maintaining a huge "Theodism" section detailing random trivia about that group's history doesn't seem like a very good solution. What are we going to do about this? Suggestions? I am open to an informed argument that Theodism should, after all, be a standalone article. Perhaps we should submit it to AfD for proper review? --dab (𒁳) 19:14, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

I have now cleaned up the "Theodism" section. The problem with this remains that it is entirely based on self-published sources. Greater detail on Theodism could within WP:DUE only be presented in a standalone article, and before we can create a standalone article, we need third party sources to establish WP:ORG. --dab (𒁳) 09:40, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

The reason why no third party sources have been cited is that there are no third party sources on Theodism. You are stuck with materials produced by Theodish folk or nothing. This is due to the nature of Theodism itself. Theods publish very little about Theodism in general and don't have written materials about how our rituals or customs function within our own groups. Our practices and customs are only disseminated face to face within the theod via oral tradition. We don't discuss our practices with outsiders and we don't write them out for public consumption. Theods do not have events open to the public so academics haven't really had an opportunity to observe us and publish about it. Those outside of Theodism have very little idea what it is we do other than in a general sense and I don't see that changing anytime soon. I am ignorant about how Wikipedia deals with issues like that but there it is. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:32, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

in spite of what you say, my point is that there is rather a lot of material published on Theodism by Theodists. The problem is just that it is self-published. The way this spells out for the purposes of Wikipedia is that lack of coverage in third party sources translates to lack of notability. If things stand as you say though, I do not expect Theodists to be unhappy about not being covered in Wikipedia. Personally, I find the idea of reconstructing paganism by reconstructing aspects of the structure of pagan society rather intriguing. Indeed, I would say it is impossible to be a "reconstructionist" in a narrow sense without doing exactly this, so I would not mind discussing Theodism in some detail under that aspect, but I need to recognize that failure to present third party sources leaves me in WP:OR territory with this. --dab (𒁳) 08:20, 1 October 2009 (UTC)

I believe it is pertinent that several Theodish groups are incredibly small. Axenthof and Sweartfenn Theods, which both get proportionally a lot of space and therefore apparent importance, are comprised of a Lord who holds only one oath (maybe two). It's misleading to count two guys co-hosting a website- the only sources, and first person at that- as 'recreating Germanic tribal structure,' much less qualifying them as a religious movement. That line of thinking suggests that every married couple or two or three friends who spill mead together every third Yule are major kindreds- or at least they would be if they had a web presence. (talk) 18:31, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Yes, this confirms my impression. I would in principle be interested in covering this topic, and I have tried several times to collect material, but every time it turns out that there are simply no third-party sources on this sufficient for an article. So we cannot have an article about it even if we wanted to. Giving this its own section here is already too much wrt WP:DUE I am afraid, but it seems not to do too much harm to the overall article, so I don't mind its presence.
if there were tens of thousands of couples or small groups doing this across the US, I am sure it would be covered somewhere in the literature on new religious movements. But the way it looks, we are talking about something of the order of a few dozen people in total. This doesn't make this more notable than your local sports club or church choir. I'm sorry, but that's the way it is, religious movements become notable if they (a) gather at least few thousand adherents or (b) make headlines for serious crimes (terrorism, child abuse). Notability is just notability, it doesn't mean being notable is being "better". --dab (𒁳) 14:56, 15 November 2011 (UTC)

The Word is Ásatrú, not Heathenry[edit]

Stephen A. McNallen, an American Asatru leader, avoids "heathen" because in the "public mind" it means an "ignorant, superstitious, or uncouth person." Stephen A. McNallen. Asatru: A Native European Spirituality. Runestone Press. 2015. p. 2 ISBN 0972029257.

Likewise,Dr. Michael Strmiska, a pagan who studies the subject, made this observation: "recently I prefer Norse-Germanic Paganism as a catch-all term that covers all relevant bases and slights none."SEE

There has been no consensus for renaming this article. --ThorLives (talk) 01:10, 11 November 2015 (UTC)

This topic has a long history on Wikipedia. You can read an early version in the Nostalgia Wikipedia. Started October 1, 2001. Original title was Asatru.
I asked Midnightblueowl for a link to that consensus, and they pointed me to Talk:Heathenry (new religious movement)#Requested move 25 August 2015, a discussion which moved Germanic neopaganismHeathenry (new religious movement). Participation there was thin; I see three supports (including the nom.) and one oppose.
Given the 14 year history of this topic having "Ásatrú" in the title, what seems like significantly different usages of "Ásatrú" in the U.S. versus Europe, and the objections above and on my talk page, I'm finding this move to be too bold, and will reverse it. A WP:requested move should be opened here to change this title.
Secondarily to this, there has been recent edit-warring over whether there is a WP:primary topic for Asatru, and if so, what that is. Some say it should redirect to Heathenry (new religious movement), as the broad-topic outline which covers Asatru worldwide. Others believe that it should redirect to this article, as the United States is the place where the term is most commonly used. I don't see any consensus over this, so if you can't form one here, I feel the default should be to put the disambiguation at the base title, or perhaps make it a broad-concept article about all things Ásatrú. I see that there are several of them covered on Wikipedia, including Ásatrú Alliance, Asatru Folk Assembly, Ásatrú Scouting and Guiding, Ásatrú holidays, etc. I know some don't like seeing partial title matches on a disambiguation page, but I don't always mind – or call it a broad-concept to get away from the partial title issue. Wbm1058 (talk) 22:16, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

Further discussion related to this matter has been opened at Talk:Ásatrú. – Wbm1058 (talk) 14:53, 2 December 2015 (UTC)

RfC: Should this article be renamed "Heathenry in the United States"[edit]

Basic question: Should this article be renamed "Heathenry in the United States"?

More information: This article is currently titled "Ásatrú in the United States", and is devoted to the subject of Heathenry, a modern Pagan new religious movement, as it exists in the United States. As the GA-rated article on Heathenry makes clear, "Heathenry" is the term which is commonly used (in particular by academics) as a catch-all to cover the entirety of this new religious movement. Other terms, such as "Asatru" and "Odinism", are favoured by some practitioners but are avoided by others, and lack the wider coverage of the term "Heathenry". Given that many of the Heathens in the United States do not use "Asatru" but instead favour "Odinism" or other terms, it seems problematic to have this page titled "Ásatrú in the United States", with "Heathenry in the United States" being a much more inclusive and apposite title. I believe that this should be a fairly un-controversial change and would like to gain consensus in support of it from various otherwise un-involved editors. Midnightblueowl (talk) 11:46, 29 December 2015 (UTC)


A month's gone by, and we have 100% of votes in favour of renaming the article. I shall proceed accordingly. Midnightblueowl (talk) 21:13, 29 January 2016 (UTC)