An Odinist Creed

The Christians have their various “creeds”, which are brief but therefore useful summaries of their religious beliefs. Their creeds include the “Apostles’ Creed” and the “Nicene Creed”, both of which can be looked up elsewhere. It is now time for Odinism to have an Odinist Creed – basically, a short statement of our fundamental spiritual beliefs.

The Odinist creed below is known as the “Melbourne Creed”, since it was formulated in Melbourne, Australia – the home of Rud Mills and Evelyn Price, who were the catalysts of the 20th century Odinist revival. No doubt Odinism, as it evolves, will develop other creeds, possibly even better ones. Meanwhile, here is the Melbourne Creed:

THE MELBOURNE CREED

1. I believe that Odinism is the innate religion and spiritual inheritance of the indigenous peoples of northern Europe, and their brothers, sisters and descendants in all lands and times.

2. I believe in our sacred ancestors, who are eternally with us.

3. I believe in the gods and goddesses of our people, however they are perceived by human minds and by whatever names they have manifested themselves to us.

4. Our gods and goddesses are beautiful, powerful, benevolent, wise, and forever worthy of our love and loyalty.

5. They raised up the Nation of Odin through their spiritual blessings, and by the gift to us of their own sacred blood,

6. in order that we may surpass the present level of humanity, and be the allies of the deities in their sacred struggle against the forces of chaos.

7. Anyone who opposes the will of our deities and the decrees of the Norns is a blasphemer, and must be renounced by all righteous men and women.

8. Anyone from within the Nation of Odin who opposes the will of our deities is also a traitor, and must be cast out from our holy Nation.

9. My loyalty to our deities and their purpose for the Nation of Odin is absolute, unwavering and eternal — and takes precedence over all other loyalties and commitments.

In the names of all our gods and goddesses, and of the Norns, Wassail.

Postscript, 30 August 2013

A comment from Alejandrina posted on this page reads: “I do accept as true all of the concepts you have presented [in the Melbourne Creed]. They’re really convincing and can definitely work. Still, the posts are very quick for novices. May you please extend them a little for next time?”

Here is our response. It was first published in Renewal, vol. 20, no. 1 (June 2013).

Our critic is right to comment on the brevity of the creed. It is meant to be a brief statement of beliefs to which most Odinists could subscribe in their own ways. That last is an important point. Each of us will apprehend the divine, and its expression in our religion, differently. These apprehensions will reflect the different circumstances and cognitive approaches of each individual. The “right” understanding is the one that is appropriate to the individual at his or her current stage of development.

Having laboured that point, it should be obvious that the following comments are not meant to define or circumscribe anyone’s views. They are, if anything, an attempt to show how widely some of the Creed’s nine points may be interpreted.

I believe that Odinism is the innate religion and spiritual inheritance of the indigenous peoples of northern Europe, and their brothers, sisters and descendants in all lands and times.

The key words here are “the indigenous peoples of northern Europe”. Our ancestors were an adventurous people who travelled widely and founded civilisations in regions such as Persia, Greece and Rome — and in modern times, the nations of Canada, America, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.

I believe in our sacred ancestors, who are eternally with us.

Among other things, “sacred” means “hallowed”. And “hallowed” means, among other things, “sacred”. As with most religious terms, attempts to define these words always end up being circular. Ultimately, these concepts are beyond definition. They mean what we sincerely hold them to mean.

I believe in the gods and goddesses of our people, however they are perceived by human minds and by whatever names they have manifested themselves to us.

All of us need to develop, and we must each develop in our own ways and at our own pace. Therefore few of us will have exactly the same understanding of the phrase “gods and goddesses”. No doubt some of us will view the gods in a literal sense while others will see them as archetypes, others as avatars, and so on. Even our own views may change in time.

Our gods and goddesses are beautiful, powerful, benevolent, wise, and forever worthy of our love and loyalty.

If our deities were not worthy of our love and loyalty, we would not offer it. A nasty, vengeful, jealous, vindictive god would not be worthy of our allegiance.

They raised up the Nation of Odin through their spiritual blessings, and by the gift to us of their own sacred blood,

The poems Völuspá and Rigsþula depict the evolution of humans from an earlier animal state through the intervention of our loving gods. The Anglo-Saxon royal genealogies state that all the heathen royal lines derive from Woden — and it’s a statistical fact that all people of Anglo-Saxon descent must be related to kings of those royal lines. Therefore the blood of the gods flows in our veins.

(This is not an eccentric position, as we can see by looking at a parallel idea through other eyes. The revered Shinto scholar, Hirata Atsutane, wrote of Japan: “… this, our glorious land, is the land in which the [Japanese] gods have their origin, and we are one and all descendants of the gods. For this reason, if we go back from the parents who gave us life and being, beyond the grandparents and great-grandparents, and consider the ancestors of ancient times, then the original ancestors of those must necessarily have been the gods.”)

in order that we may surpass the present level of humanity, and be the allies of the deities in their sacred struggle against the forces of chaos.

Another surviving pre-Christian poem, Vafðruðnismál, completes the sequence begun by Völuspá and Rigsþula. During the last battle two human beings take shelter in a forest. Their names are Líf and Lífþrasir. (These mean something like “Life” and “Abounding with life”.) These two, and these alone, survive to repopulate the earth.

But are the children of Líf and Lífþrasir entirely our kind? Throughout the history of the gods’ interaction with humans they have been intervening directly to raise our evolutionary standard. Once chaos has been defeated in the triumphant final battle, is it logical to assume that the gods and goddesses presiding over a vastly improved world would be satisfied with the level of development we have reached so far? The poetry suggests not. The whole world is to be renewed in transcendent beauty, the surviving gods will be young and vibrant, and it seems unlikely that they would be satisfied with people like us who are, in Nietzsche’s terms, “Human, all too human”. In short, it seems to be the will of the gods that humanity will be surpassed by a higher species, based on the best that already exists – as happened every time the gods improved our species in the past.

Anyone who opposes the will of our deities and the decrees of the Norns is a blasphemer, and must be renounced by all righteous men and women.

The part of “the will of our deities” that we can understand is their commitment to our evolution as a species. Since stasis is impossible, the choice is either improvement or decay. A person who favoured the latter course would repel most of us. He or she would be blaspheming against the basic principle of life itself.

Anyone from within the Nation of Odin who opposes the will of our deities is also a traitor, and must be cast out from our holy Nation.

This is not a commandment to “cast out sinners”, but a mere statement of fact. In any healthy organism, poisons and foreign objects are rejected and expelled. In a similar way, those who are opposed to our gods, and are therefore advocates of entropy, will find themselves outside our community. This happens automatically, just as our physical bodies automatically react to the presence of a splinter, a germ or a poison.

My loyalty to our deities and their purpose for the Nation of Odin is absolute, unwavering and eternal — and takes precedence over all other loyalties and commitments.

This unwavering devotion is not in any way arduous. Our deities represent or embody everything that is good and noble and beautiful, and it is as natural for us to focus on them as it is for a plant to turn toward the sun. Equally, our love for our families and friends is both natural and good, and therefore cannot be in conflict with our love for the gods and goddesses. The same applies to all our other loyalties and commitments. As long as they are natural and good, there can be no conflict.

However, sometimes we mistakenly give allegiance to a person, a company, a political party, a flag or whatever. At such confusing times we can clarify our own thinking by asking whether the gods would approve. If not, we know what to do.

Published on February 3, 2011 at 3:06 pm  Comments (14)  

14 Comments

  1. I love the awakening you bring to the masses it is a great thing you do opening up the consciousness to the wonder of our gods and goddesses hail. The gods hail the folk hail the odinic rite

  2. Good afternoon, I have only just been introduced to the notion of odinism after living under the guise of an agnostic as I have never held much belief in the organised religion that is most prominent in our society but have always believed in something more. As a secondary student I took an interest in the mythology of our northern European ancestors and always asked myself why we couldn’t support the same values and worship these mighty deities I was reading about, and so I am left surprised that i have not till now heard of odinism. I have read through the site and would like to know where I can find more literature that would help my understanding and upholding of the odinic path, any help in this matter would be most appreciated

    • Thank you, Colin.

      There’s plenty of “extra reading” on the site.

      Wassail,
      Osred

  3. I believe the Gods are awakening us from our sleep of ignorance, I am a Pagan, and have a deep love of nature identify with the wolf and dog clan ,also the Raven who in American Indian traditions is my animal being an air sign. I have always had a deep belief in the Gods and have always identified with Odin, recently in Sassafras in a Shop named the Oracle I was moved to tears by a statue of Odin with his two wolves and the Ravens thought and memory as I write this I am also moved to tears, I just had to buy the statue it was as if he was urging me to do this..I wonder if any others are having the same sort of strong emotions about the Gods?

  4. I do accept as true with all of the concepts you have
    presented for your post. They’re really convincing and can definitely work. Still, the posts are very quick for novices. May you please extend them a little from next time? Thanks for the post.

  5. I have long been drawn to this belief and way of life, ever since i was a boy. How can i learn more about this way of life & is there some sort of sacred rite or ritual to initiate into the brotherhood?

    Andy

  6. is there an answer to andy’s post. I am curious aswell.

    • We have a rite known as Profession, in which people returning to our ancestral faith declare their allegiance to the deities. A page on this site, “Preparing for Odinist Profession”, provides an introduction.

      • Thank you.

  7. Thank you for your reply. Once one has gone through this process, are there others that i can meet and learn from, regarding the ways of Odin> The literature is good but i wish contact with others.

    Andy.

    • Andy, the purpose of this site is to provide general information, not to put people in touch with each other. One way to make contact with others is through the various Facebook sites that have been set up specifically for heathens to interract.

  8. Dear Andy there dosnt seem to be much help to unite us in comradship, we need human contact and to be able to unite in our faith, being solitary is not satisfactory, Just posting comments dont seem to get us very far in our quest for knowledge,I posted quit a long time ago, so far this site seems to be a toothless tiger, ask Odin for guidence good luck.

  9. Thanks for the reply, i will continue as a solitary practioner. It is dissapointing to be in the shadows, but i am sure when Odinism was strong in this country that there would have had to have been meettings and gatherings, to learn and study the LORE as a group. Hail the gods.

  10. Osred, thank you for clearing that up. This site is very good and I have enjoy it greatly. Andy


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