Keep fanning the flames, guys

Peter Dybing has now weighed in on the controversy, accusing Galina of “crossing a line,” of being a “threat” and of “promoting a dominionist theological stance.” He goes on to add:

These events are alarming, add to this narrow and divisive view of Paganism a dose of the name calling that has occurred on both sides of the debate and we have a volatile mixture that could cause a schism within our broader community.

Sam Webster’s comments amused me, but not half as much as Peter’s inability to come up with a single example of such theologically-motivated threats of violence.

Except I’m not really amused because this was also being said:

And John Halstead questions why I called a month of silent protest over the state of the pagan community.

Edited to add: These disgusting comments did not come from Peter Dybing’s blog. They were found on Facebook. For more context, please read the comments.

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102 thoughts on “Keep fanning the flames, guys

  1. This is off Facebook, right? There’s a reason I just don’t look at that site more than a couple times a month, and even then, it’s just a quick skim of my friends who’ve pretty much stopped communicating any other way.

    • I also wanted to say:

      I think the comments from FB, that you post, constitute an endorsement of rape culture. It equates sexual assault as a favoured retribution for things that Ms Krasskova has said, or at the very least, the thought of it is funny, which really isn’t at all better, just less extreme.

      And to think, only a few weeks ago, kids from Tumblr came *here* to your blog, and comment that Galina and Dver bore “internalised misogyny” cos they had the context to understand your “don’t trust women” joke. I can’t help but wonder how they’d feel about this Lisa Surita Golden’s comments and the ones she lets stay up on her FB thread. Surely there is a greater measure of misogyny, internalised or otherwise, in that shit she and her friends spew than in Galina merely agreeing that you were being funny cos of reasons.

      Seriously, look at this woman on FB: This is rape culture and advocating in favour of sexual assault. It’s really hard to make excuses for that. And as a man who believes in feminist social progress, I thank you for taking this filth to task.

      • I bet you dollars to donuts they’ll just laugh it off or remain silent because they don’t like Galina.

        • Oh, I’m sure. People like that have a tendency to be hypocritical when the behaviour they claim to abhor is inflicted on someone they don’t like.

      • Ashley Moore

        wholeheartedly agreed. have been away from internets for a while and i come back to this?!


        no words. fucking internet.

  2. We’re the ones who are threatening? We’re the ones who are dangerous? We’re the ones who are intolerant? What in the fuck is THIS?!

    • Elizabeth

      Yeah, I don’t recall where in the Havamal it says to kill people who don’t believe the same things you do :P

      • I’m pretty sure you won’t find that in any polytheist literature. And if, by chance, such a claim can be found it’s disgusting and deserves to be repudiated.

    • thelettuceman

      We now return you to American Heathenry, already in progress.

  3. To be fair, he weighed in on Sunday, when this was all still raging very hot. This isn’t a late attempt to fan a dying debate.

    As someone who is not a devotional polytheist or even a polytheist, I condemn in the strongest terms both the tenor and substance of the FB comments you posted. They are disgusting and shameful and certainly we can do better than this.

  4. Laura P

    Yeah, my issue is not anyone disagreeing with our practices or having a theological discussion or debate…..this crosses a line, a big line. You don’t roll the same way we do? Fine, leave us in peace to serve our Gods. None of us has personally gone after those of the other side of the debate. And the filth they spew about us, denigrating and debasing us as human beings. It is disgusting. Cyberbullies. Then they wonder why people don’t want to be lumped into their “community”. Well I for one am gonna do this: hey, Heathens, “pagans”, whatev. I am a polytheist who has a devotional relationship to the Orishas and to many of the Norse Gods. But I denounce your labels….I am not a “neo-Pagan”, I am NOT a Heathen. I am an indigenous woman practicing my indigenous religion, raised in Santeria who has had her Ochas in Santeria and Ifa. THAT is my culture and my community.
    So my communities are Orisha communities and polytheist communities where my Holy Powers are respected. I am not even *trying* to be part of *your* communities or use your labels, so leave me the fuck alone. I will continue to advocate for my Gods and discuss polytheist praxis, but I do not care what you do. Just leave us alone to do what we do….K thx bai.

  5. Galina and I have differences of opinion. But I’ve met the person and could not fathom that kind of hatred being thrown at her in that thread. What is it in people that they have to display that much hate and venom and that much anger at a person who happens to be strong in their convictions, and who hasn’t done any physical harm or threats to anyone else? That’s just wrong. I don’t know how such people live with themselves and that much poison that obviously courses through them.

    • That’s what gets me about this. I disagree with everyone! All the time! Even Dver and Galina. Just because you disagree with someone about a particular issue doesn’t mean you should cut them off and demonize them. Civility must be maintained throughout, and if it can’t agree to disagree and move on. Why is that such a foreign concept these days?

      • Ashley Moore

        isn’t one of the foundations of a healthy relationship (and healthy human interaction for that matter) being able to maintain personal opinions and function vicariously while also being able to discuss grievances in a constructive manner? and dare i say even have a sense of humor while doing so?

        i my crazy (and people oft do) but isn’t this precisely the antithesis of the internet AT LARGE?

  6. Um, regarding “dominionism,” I think that word does not mean what these people think it means.

    • No kidding. I think it’d be interesting to see what pagan dominionism would look like. (Mostly out of morbid curiosity.) But so far I haven’t seen a single person advocating it or putting it into practice.

  7. Also, “shotgun stock to the temple?” “Go vikernes on their ass?” Holy shit.

  8. Erik

    Fuck the Internet, I’m done…

  9. Hmmm so folks on our side say that they are being disrespectful and impious and folks on their side say our people commit acts of bestiality and have schizophrenia.


    This hasn’t compelled me to participate in the month of silence though. I simply cannot do it. Not only is what I do and what I enjoy doing contingent upon communication, my radio show is upstart and fledgling and a month of ‘deadness’ is going to kill its steam. Even killing my blog won’t do since not only is it a religious blog where I discuss my experiences, it is also a personal journal of sorts. In fact, I don’t share a lot of my ‘deeper’ religious experiences and thoughts on it, but rather notes about the community, behavior patterns, and paradigm shifts that might be beneficial (but which people won’t do because 1) It is hard and 2) They feel like it threatens their identity)

    When you start commenting on folks appearance and start saying that they could get fucked by a horse and/or would enjoy getting fucked by a horse AND THEN disrespect the Gods, yeah you might reconsider your discourse style and take a moment to re-examine your own self. At least Dybing had the good sense (which admittedly he doesn’t have a ton of. I am not a fan of the man) to delete the comments.

    • Peter Dybing

      Those comments never appeared on my blog. While I do not doubt they appeared at some other location as part of this discussion, they are more of an example of how out of control this debate is on both sides.

      Be assured that if anyone made some of those comments on my blog they would be banned for life. We can’t have diologue if we intend disrespect.

      • How do you figure the above exactly-quoted Facebook discussion is ‘more an example of how out of control this debate is on both sides’? Where has anyone actually on the polytheist side of fence bodily threatened anyone on the other?

      • I disagree, Peter. I think “their side” has gone a little bit above and beyond. I can’t really see this same calibre of commentary from hard polytheists.

      • I’m not really sure why people keep assuming that the comments were taken from your blog. Perhaps I should edit the post to make that clear. But I also wanted to say that you are a respected figure in the pagan community on account of your laudatory actions. Because of that your words carry a great deal of weight. Fair or not, you need to hold yourself to a higher standard and consider the implications of them. Someone advocating a particular form of theology and praxis, no matter how aggressively they do so, is not equivalent to a fundamentalist, a domionist, a nazi and similar terms that have been thrown around lately. Each of these are highly loaded but also precise terms.

    • There’s a bit of confusion: The FB comments weren’t from Dybing’s FB page –they’re linked, noy screencapped. They’re from here:

      Curse you, Sannion, and your abstract thinking. You confuse people!

      • Was less abstract thinking and more of the fact that it was juxtaposed next to the thing about Dybing. I naturally assumed that Dybing deleted the comments because even if I’m not wild about him I at least know enough about him that he wouldn’t allow that (Sine I did in fact click on the link to Dybing’s page and the links to the FB comments on other people come up as a page not found so. . .)

        • Well, “abstract” in the sense that –I’m assuming– it’s something that he recognises as obvious, and the manner in which he posted it therefore seems “obvious”, to him, but the fact that it won’t necessarily seem obvious to others doesn’t really connect in the act of putting the post together.

          I’m also used to this sort of thing from Sannion (he might just be doing it more than you think, but obviously, i wouldn’t be able to fetch examples based on your reactions and interpretations), so I’ve developed a pattern when reading his posts, so that I know what he’s talking about –which includes reading every single link provided, if it comes to that. I can’t trust that the logic is going to be lineal.

    • Each of us must do what we feel called to. Even if people don’t participate in Silent July, I hope they’ll slow things down a bit in order to give themselves time to reflect and also do more for their gods. But I always think people should do more for their gods, regardless of how they do, because gods are cool and I like seeing people honor them.

  10. Sierra

    This made me feel physically ill. What is wrong with people? How can anyone even function walking around in the world with so much bile and hate inside of them? I don’t understand. I don’t want to understand. I can’t find a single point of connection to help me fathom a point of view that, to my perceptions, comes across as “I’m so angry and offended by your opinion/faith/perspective that I think you are worthless as a person”, A point of view that makes schoolyard bully comments acceptable, or suggestions that an appropriate response might include physical or sexual violence. I am disgusted by this in a way I can hardly articulate – and yet none of that disgust makes me want to threaten or harm or belittle the people involved. Mostly, I want to find some way to make sure that my own opinions never turn me into that sort of a person, never make me so furiously intolerant, leave me so filled with rage that I might feel better by tearing someone else down. I think I need to go find my gods, for a little while.

  11. Peter Dybing

    Just courious, what threats of violence? I am not aware of nor have I referenced any threats of violence in this debate. I think the debate is out of controll on both sides with language being used that is not helpful to anyone. As an FYI if this was kept in terms of polytheasim, I would have little issue. It is stating that anothers practice is not Pagan I have an issue with. There are dozens of pagan paths, all make up this diverse community, I believe that neither mine or your practice, or anyone has the right or ability to define what is Pagan. Such statements are devisive.

    It is only in mutual respect for our diverse community that we have a voice.

    • Peter Dybing

      If a number of the disrespectful comments you list above appeared on my blog, they would be deleted. We need to speak to each other in ways that do not intend disrespect or insult.

    • There are dozens of pagan paths, all make up this diverse community,

      Says who?

      I believe that neither mine or your practice, or anyone has the right or ability to define what is Pagan.

      Great. I believe that you’re wrong about that.

      Such statements are devisive.

      So? Who says that it the final rubric for evaluating statements about paganism?

  12. What the fuck? Up to this point I’ve been vaguely entertained by this whole controversy, but this is disgusting in the extreme. Not so much embarrassed to be pagan after reading this as I am embarrassed to be human.

  13. What the? Seriously? This is ok? I don’t give an airborne coitus what you believe – attacks like this do not belong!

    • I don’t give an airborne coitus

      That was beautiful. :-D I’ll have to swipe it for later use of my own.

      • Feel free :) I swiped it from my dad who had to find alternatives to “fuck” because that’s one of the only words mom really can’t stand.

  14. Guys, there is no moral high ground here for anyone to claim. Humanists have been likened to people who experiment on prisioners of war. this disgusting shit has been said about Galina. Sannion you yourself said you would punch John if you saw him. I don’t know if that is a theologically motivated threat of violence but it is not good. There is no moral high ground for anyone to claim. It has been napalmed into the ground, and right now this is just a scramble to try and show who was more of a jerk
    k? Why? To what purpose? What can come of it? How is it serving anything other than our least lofty and most childish urges?

    If we sit here and throw out tit for tat of bad behavior, this will never stop because our capacity for stooping to ever lower levels in the name of pride will eat every last one of us alive.

    • My willingness to punch Halstead in the nose has nothing to do with theology and everything to do with testosterone. He took a low blow at someone I care for; a bloody nose is getting off fairly light. Also, where I come from that’s how men settle their differences. Then they pick themselves up, buy each other a round of beer and discuss their differences in a civilized manner. Now, seriously, find me one, JUST ONE, instance where a hard polytheist has taken cheap personal pot shots the way the PCP crowd has OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER again. Find me one, JUST ONE, instance where a hard polytheist was seriously advocating RELIGIOUSLY MOTIVATED violence.

      I’ll wait here.


      Yup. That’s what I thought. Try to spin this as both sides behaving equally bad all you want. The facts speak clearly enough for themselves.

      • I understand you are angry. I’m not going to go crawling through all this ugliness to try and point out additional examples of polytheists behaving badly because as I said, that kind of behavior is going to eat us alive. What does it matter in the end who stooped lower when we all lowered ourselves by taking part in this madness. Just let it end already. I’ve not spent time on tumblr or fb where obviously some of this lowest common denominator stuff is taking place. As i said above, i condemn it.

        I wish you peace and safety.

        • Funny how people keep repeating that claim yet can’t ever back it up. Funny the way a crying clown is funny.

          Anyway, I’ll take your condemnation of this stuff at face value (you know, as opposed to what certain people are doing) and stand with you. This craziness needs to end. Used to be we could have heated arguments without it turning this nasty this quick. If we can’t vehemently disagree while maintaining a basic level of civility that does not bode well for the future of paganism.

      • Elizabeth

        The thing is, though, the FB conversation you quoted above was between Asatruar/Heathens. I’m vaguely familiar with some of the names there. What that’s about is hardcore recons who think that they are more polytheistic than Galina and Raven, and deciding that since their ancesters were (presumably) mighty Viking warriors, they have the right and the duty to “take care of things” any way they see fit. They won’t, because they’re all basically cowards, but that’s how they think.

        Really, the above conversation says more about when polytheists become too enamored of their own imaginary moral high ground and right to judge than it does about the PCP debate. It’s a commonplace sentiment in the US Asatru community, unfortunately, because Galina (and Raven, and anybody who admits to being friends with either of them) is immediately painted as a dangerous lunatic who needs to be killed. Because killing people for believing differently is apparently something people think the ancients did, or would condone.

        I’m not saying you don’t have the right to be outraged, or that this shit shouldn’t be called out whenever it comes up. I live in the very place people are always threatening to burn down, after all, and it affect me too, not just because Galina is my friend. But posting that FB conversation isn’t a rebuttal so much as an illustration of what REAL hatred and intolerance looks like within the Pagan movement, as opposed to anything Galina might have said herself. So, yeah — illustrative and sobering even if it is kind of misleading.

        • Syna

          Elizabeth makes the excellent point that although *in this particular debate* I can’t think of an example of a hard polytheist making horrible statements, I have certainly *heard horrible statements before*. Particularly from the conservative Asatruar.

          Pagans tho. Pagans. God dammit, people.

          I am firmly in the middle ground of the PCP/polytheist debate in a lot of ways. I think certain things that are certain to piss either side off.

          And with that in mind, perhaps this is Jim Henson-inspired bullshit, but in a community of people prone, for whatever reason, to toxicity, what is enduring to me, what is admirable, is not so much the specifics of one’s theology as DEPTH, thoughtfulness, earnestness, openness, and a true love for the gods that is not so much based on a personal need for religion, specialness, and self-understanding as personal experience, a cultivated relationship, and ardentness.

          • Elizabeth makes the excellent point that although *in this particular debate* I can’t think of an example of a hard polytheist making horrible statements, I have certainly *heard horrible statements before*. Particularly from the conservative Asatruar.

            That is not a relevant point though. That is EXACTLY what is wrong with this situation.

            During this debate the hard polytheists have made a concerted effort to avoid personal attacks and keeping it to the issues at hand. (Myself excluded.) And the PCP crowd has not. People keep saying that both sides are behaving badly here, and yet not one single piece of evidence can be brought forth to prove it. Not one.

            Yes, in the past, in other contexts and other arguments, some polytheists have behaved poorly. Not now, not here.

            And I know exactly why people keep making the accusation.

            It’s simple rhetoric 101.

            If you say something enough people will start to believe it, even though their own direct experiences refute it.

            So again, where’s the proof? Where have hard polytheists gone personal or seriously advocated religiously motivated violence?

            Every single time someone makes this claim we need to call them on it. Every. Single. Time.

            • Syna

              If your point is solely about accountability, that’s fair enough — people do need to be called out on their shit, every time it happens, as you say. Particularly when it’s this shade of repulsive.

              • I’d hope that regardless of where one finds themself on this issue, or really any of the controversies that are always floating around, this sort of talk would be completely reprehensible to them. Even more hopefully seeing this will make people think again about the language they’re using and the impact it has so that we can tone down the rhetoric and have intelligent and meaningful discussions once again. I don’t think we’ll all ever agree, and I don’t think that would necessarily be a good thing. But we can at least try to maintain a basic level of decorum. Not for our enemies, but for ourselves.

                • Syna

                  Yes — I definitely don’t think anyone’s obligated to agree at all, but I hope distancing oneself from people *like this* is much higher on the priority list for *everyone* than distancing oneself from people who happen to differ from you on theological points (however important those points may be to any given person).

        • The thing is, though, the FB conversation you quoted above was between Asatruar/Heathens. I’m vaguely familiar with some of the names there. What that’s about is hardcore recons who think that they are more polytheistic than Galina and Raven, and deciding that since their ancesters were (presumably) mighty Viking warriors, they have the right and the duty to “take care of things” any way they see fit. They won’t, because they’re all basically cowards, but that’s how they think.

          Ah! That’s certainly a brand of “special” all its own. And I am familiar with the fact that Galina and Raven are considered a splinter, in kindest terms, from mainstream Heathenry, and get a lot of undeserved crap from that camp.

        • I think this actually illustrates how this whole PCP thing got so out of hand. People are making some pretty large inferences, mostly I suspect, because they’re just skimming until they find something to get peeved at and then ranting about it. (Not saying that you, Elizabeth, were doing that here, or that one side is more guilty of that than another – just that I suspect that if people 1) slowed down 2) carefully considered what they were reading and 3) didn’t automatically assume the worst about their perceived opponents much of the nastiness could have been avoided.)

          What I actually said here is that Peter Dybing is using incendiary language and throwing around accusations without backing them up. This is bad because while this whole thing is going on there are actually people out there saying the sort of nasty shit I quoted. When even respected authorities like Dybing resort to language that has the sole intent to demonize that is dangerous because it gives a veneer of legitimacy to this shit. If people keep fanning the flames, there will be consequences. There are extremely unstable people out there. Either way, the fact that this stuff is going on in the pagan community* shows how deeply flawed it is. At no point did I say this was going on on Dybing’s forum nor that the people making these claims were from the PCP faction.

          * Despite many of us saying that we are not pagans and don’t want to be lumped in with them, many still do. That’s the sense in which I’m using the word, a convenient catch-all for non-Abrahamic religions.

          • Elizabeth

            Fair enough. I wasn’t sure how you were using the FB convo to illustrate your point, as you seemed to switch gears there too fast for my brain to catch up. Which is my own fault; when I see people not-so-subtly hinting that my friends (or anybody, really) should be murdered because they don’t share the same beliefs as the would-be vigilantes have, I tend to lose my shit.

            • You’re absolutely right. I should have made that transition more clear. Especially since I’m painfully aware that people are reacting without reflecting and are so churned up and looking for offense that they’ll find it anywhere. (Again, not saying you’re doing this. Jesus, through this you’ve been a rock and one of the few voices of sanity.) And yeah, this stuff is nauseating. In fact this is just the tip of the iceberg. I spent way too much time yesterday mucking about in parts of the internet I never want to visit again. In fact I actually had a couple earlier drafts of this, including one with dozens of egregious examples of this shitty behavior from all segments of pagandom but chose instead to opt for this simplified version. This stuff is not okay. It’s not okay when anyone does it, no matter what side of the divide they’re on.

      • But I just wanted to mention that my willingness to punch Halstead in the nose has nothing to do with theology and everything to do with testosterone.

        Or rather, ego, perhaps? Dude, it really bothers me when people blame “testosterone” on this sort of ego-tripping to the point of threats of violence, be them empty or wrapped up with shiny paper and given a card and all. Truth be told, I punched more people in the face before HRT than since. I just don’t feel like it, anymore; I suspect because I no longer feel the need to compensate.

        Also, where I come from that’s how men settle their differences. Then they pick themselves up, buy each other a round of beer and discuss their differences in a civilized manner.

        Which is exactly how I read it, But I, too, am from a low-prole, urban background (now firmly in Marx’s artist class, which is approximately in-line with Paul Fussel’s X-class), where it’s acceptable for men to work out their difference in a clear pattern of first a punch (or round of said) and then a pint, or more likely several. It’s really not as chaotic as the typical bourgeoisie-aspiring pagans of mid-to-high-prole backgrounds make it out to be.

        • You’re undoubtedly correct. This wasn’t about testosterone but ego, and I have an ego almost as large as my cock. (And I can wrap my cock around my considerable body three or four times with cock left over.)

          I thought I was making it perfectly clear by context that that was just macho bravado and I was condemning religiously-motivated violence. (Not that any violence is good, mind you, but I’m just not going to punch someone in the nose because they hold a theology contrary to my own. Who would do that?)

          Love your “low-prole, urban background” and yeah, that’s pretty accurate. And sometimes it comes through in my online discourse. Which is why it’s nice to find someone like you that I can go toe-to-toe with and still retain respect. We got into some nasty spats on the lists back in the day, but the more that happened the more I came to admire you because you held your own, you were funny and intelligent and you didn’t go completely batshit insane. Sadly, those qualities seem to be scarce these days.

  15. M.A. Rivera

    People will be people, so honestly this doesn’t surprise me because this shit has been going on for a long time. I’ve heard that Galina (and Raven too) were hated by lots of folks but I’d never seen it in action until now cause I’m not a Heathen, Asatruar or belong to any path which might involve interacting with these hateful folk (I also avoid social media like the plague). You know people talk about divisive this and divisive that but, hey, guess what people? We are divided. We have been for a very long time and it’s not a bad thing. We are divided and shit like the above proves it. If only people stopped following the lives of those they hate the world would be a better place. Blessings.

    • You know people talk about divisive this and divisive that but, hey, guess what people? We are divided. We have been for a very long time and it’s not a bad thing. We are divided and shit like the above proves it.

      Oh, indeed. This has been so-called singular “community” has been pluralised for at least as long as I’ve been around these communities. It’s not a bad thing; at least not until there are clashes over the assumption of a single, all-encompassing community.

      The truest, most honest definition I’ve come up with for “pagan” is that it’s not even a “big tent community”, and hasn’t been since Heathens splintered off in the late 1970s/early 1980s or so, but it’s a word that defines how the Abrahamic mainstream, who are clearly privileged in Western society, sees those who are not them. Sometimes, that mainstream will let Hindus, and Buddhists, and Indigenous Americans and Australians & New Zealanders, and even the Africans and their diaspora (especially sub-Saharan tribes), be individual communities, but those practising a religion based in European and/or Mediterranean (including indigenous religions to North Africa and the Near & Middle East) pre-Abrahamic practises and theologies are uniformly cast as “pagan” by academia and laity alike; those practising new religions loosely based on said are lumped in with that, and also anyone who clearly identifies themself as “pagan”, regardless of academic definitions and its relation to their own practises are joyfully placed, by the mainstream, alongside the rest. It’s not a “positive definition: “Pagan” does not define who you are. To be “pagan” is to be negatively-defined: To be “pagan” is about who you are not.

      It says fuck all about your theology or practises, or even if you have either.

      • M.A. Rivera

        I couldn’t agree more. The problem is getting people to understand this and, personally, I’m not one to even try.

  16. Elizabeth

    People have been saying these kinds of things about Galina and Raven and the farm (which is merely a RESIDENCE, not an organization all on it own) for years. This is nothing new, and is one of the main reasons why I refuse to deal with the so-called “Heathen community” or use the “Heathen” label myself. Between the threats to my friends, the anti-Lokean crap (they like to talk about murdering us, too), and constantly being asked why I don’t just “follow the gods of my own ancestors” once people find out my last name is Sanskrit and not German, I don’t need it. It’s sad, because I do know some good Heathen folks, but overall I have no interest in associating myself with that particular part of the Pagan demographic.

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  18. gods .. I have had a lot of thoughts about the debate.. but NOTHING like what these.. “people” posted.. debate is good.. personal attacks are not.. I will say there’s a lot that I probably disagree with on both sides..but that is just wayyyy over the top.

    • It kind of goes beyond “personal attacks” at this kind of “talk”, and more into clear endorsement of violence, including all manner of sexual assault.

      • thelettuceman

        American Heathenry makes me wish for hate speech laws in the United States just like Britain has.

      • And you know what’s really shitty about this? There is no fucking way that they would be talking like that if she was a man. They would still be asshole trolls staying stupid and violent shit because this is the internet, but they wouldn’t be using that kind of strongly sexualized language and they probably wouldn’t be reacting as strongly as they do. I’ve seen it before. I will say the same exact thing that a woman in these debates does and people will flip out on the woman, not me. Partly that’s because I’m charismatic and there’s the whole fool thing, but I think it’s also because I have a penis. And people tremble before the almighty penis!

        • Oh, no doubt about it. And even when people disagree with you, it doesn’t seem to get as personal, as fast. No one cares that you’re fat and broke, no-one makes a federal case of the fact fact that you’ve actually called yourself a fundamentalist, some have even insisted you never said it, ever. Well, of course, you’re a man –not only does the state of your body have nothing to do with your religion, but somehow it’s just better when you say the same things Galina does. Cos it’s somehow more offensive to people when strong-willed women take an actual stance on things.

          • And yet I’m accused of being sexist because I say don’t trust women. It’s madness, I tell ya!

            • Now, it’s arguable that some people might hold wome to a higher standard because they feel that wome are more capable of good behaviours than men —which is arguably just as sexist, not just because it renders the best men just barely above “capable”, by default, but it’s far more easily argued as unrealistic that, given the state of this society, wherein women are just as exposed, if not moreso, the the various sexist behaviours, and otherwise bad behaviours that men are, that women would somehow bare a higher “immunity” to it, especially when there’s a clear “reward system” for men to act poorly. Now, this arguement would hold more water if this was still a debate about how sexist you might be, but it’s not. If only by proxy to the current “issues” being “debated”, this is about how somehow Galina is more accountable for holding such strict views as you do. Sure, you’ve been chastised for it, too, but clearly not with the same tenacity that people are turning on Galina. Sure, maybe some of this has to do with additional factors, like Galina’s peripheral connections to Heathenry, and the additional years she’s had with her name on honest-to-corn BOOKS, but you know, when it comes to stuff like this, where the majority of the focus is on stuff that’s been said on the Internet, bringing up facts like that alsot feels like making excuses for the bad behaviour of people who might seem to be vaguely aiming in the direction of your throat, if they’re aiming for you T ALL, but are clearly headed for Galina’s jugular in a concentrated effort to make an undisputed kill-shot.

              The criticisms aimed at each of you has been unequal.

              • For sure. I mean, everyone seems to be focusing in on what Galina has said, and to a lesser extent Dver, while my role in this has pretty much been ignored. (Not to mention all of the other hard polytheist voices and if I was those guys I’d be seriously miffed.) Apparently my contribution to the debate consists of nothing more than making too many posts with weird images, threatening to punch John Halstead in the nose should we meet in a pub and saying that if I could turn everyone into a right-thinking polytheist with my awesome mind powers I would. But this did all start because I wanted to make a point about the differences between the social context of ancient Greek theater vs watching a movie in your home, something that was mostly ignored and then entirely lost in the shuffle. Jesus man, what’s going to happen when I bring up the different type of drinking vessels used in symposia? “How dare you tell me that I should use a kylix instead of a chous! Oppression!”

                • Ashley Moore

                  i am glad i am not the only one who has noticed this.

                  except, there is already such an internet following for galina being ‘crazy’ that i am really not surprised so many people jumped at the chance at more condemning. i’ve seen some nasty stuff about you sannion, but nothing CLOSE to the galina stuff. maybe because they think you’d like being raped by a horse? …or something?

                  i think they will use a beer stein and cry racism. and everyone will be nazi’s again. i told you it would happen sannion and its gonna keep happening, because at the end of the day anyone who disagrees with anything is hitler. just hitler.

                  and then sannion..the promised day will arrive..
                  and i can whip out my hitler pikachu; he chooses you to use the kylix for racial purity!

                • Damn right. Hell, I remember very clearly that you started this (well, more-or-less), but the weight of the focus has been on the wimminfolk, and I can’t deny that it’s ultimately because of some variant of “how dare that vadge have an actual opinion on this?!” I’m not even talking about the pitifully stereotypical “hardcore recons” who want to reinstitute arranged marriage and shit, I’m talking about people like Halstead &co, who put all this excess focus of what Galina said, and often wildly exaggerate the tone and ferocity with which she said it (and to a lesser extent, Dver, apparently, at least according to you, cos I just haven’t seen people mention her much) to the point of almost ignoring you (and when he did address what you said, it was apparently cos he wanted to cast you as “white knighting” for your lady). Sure, he tried to even it out by bringing in Anomolous Thracian, but he clearly didn’t make it as personal as he made his attack on Galina. There’s a huge whiff of sexism to all this, in the way that people are addressing the things said.

                  …and, of course, the people who claim to care the most about sexism: Where are they? They’re likely passively contributing to it by sitting on their hands, some even actively contributing to it by boasting about how they’ve “cheered on” sexist offenders like Halstead, because why? Because it’s Galina, and they disagree with her, so in their minds, she deserves whatever the Internet can dish out, no matter how personal, no matter how disgusting and imbalanced and overall symptomatic of great social problems they pretend to actually care about on Tumblr. In other words, they basically victim-blame (which they’ll insist is bad and should be called out when it happens) because if she wasn’t Galina, and didn’t say they things she did, she wouldn’t be getting these so-called “just deserts” for daring to be an opinionated woman.

                  You see why, no matter how much I believe in the causes practically fetishised by SJW kids on Tumblr, I’m utterly contemptuous of that crowd? This is how they work: Maybe a handful of them actually care, but the rest are just in it cos it’s the currently-fashionable way for kids of meagre means to give themselves a “good-guy badge” —if they had Angelina Jolie’s income, they’d be copy-catting Mia Farrow (just like Jolie) and hand-pick a “family of colour” cos that’s what RICH twits trying to score shallow points as a do-gooder do.

    • Exactly! I don’t want everyone to agree. There are some pretty big divides here and some legitimate issues involves and all that is getting drowned out by the rhetoric. I just think we need to be able to express dissent in a civil, adult fashion.

      • Complete agreement is boring, anyway. Civil disagreement and challenges to belief amongst people who have mutual respect for eachother can be healthy, even strengthen one’s beliefs, assuming people can maintain basic courtesy rules of debate. If it’s going to degenerate into personal attacks, though, that can’t happen.

        • Honestly that’s what annoys me secondmost about this. (The nature of the personal attacks be foremost.) A few of these PCP folk – not all, but a few – actually have some intelligent and constructive things to say. I know I’ve really enjoyed the exchanges I’ve had with Jack Faust and one or two others. But that’s getting drowned out by the histrionics and I think we all lose out in that case.

        • Ashley Moore

          well if everyone agreed with everyone all the time…thats downright scary.

          which is something i always find funny; when people who want everyone to agree with them, suddenly if that were to happen..what WOULD these types of people do i wonder..

          what would be left to demean? wasn’t there a Dr. Seuss story on these lines?
          i seem to recall one…

  19. thelettuceman

    This needs to be circulated around the net, posted to prominent blogs and forums, and the like, so readership can be seen as far and wide as possible. This isn’t an isolated incident. This is representative of the actual attitudes in American Heathenry and many of the more “conservative” aspects of Reconstructionism and Paganism that are currently being perpetuated. I’d argue that the above remarks are actually pretty tame in comparison to some of the things that I’ve seen.

    It’s the biggest reason why I do not want a fucking thing to do with “Heathenry”, and why I cling to the Pagan label.

    There is a growing voice of people who are actively advocating violence and murder against people they disagree with. And people have the gall to call others fundamentalists for wanting to take a hard line approach to the idea that the Gods might actually be real? They really don’t see how deep this goes. And calling people “Fundamentalists” over something so trivial really dilutes the fact that there are people out there who would stand in faith besides skinheads and mass murderers because they’re “Doing it right”.

    • there are people out there who would stand in faith besides skinheads and mass murderers

      Skinhead ≠ ‘bonehead’ id est ‘white-power skin’. Yes, I’m a Mod, but I’ve also been to SHARP (Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice) and RASH (Red and Anarchist [Anarchosocialist] Shinheads) rallies, and if you ‘stand in faith’, with me, it’s easily argued that you’re ‘standing in faith with a skinhead’ (though some skins might split hairs and refer to me as a ‘Bowie Boot Boy’, if not a Mod, cos of the hair and apparent effeminacy).

    • Honestly you can try to circulate this, but this is the norm for much of the very vile things said about Galina Krasskova, or Raven Kaldera, or anyone who could possibly by the slightest chance by linked to them (even if they’re not!). It’s common in mainstream Asatru circles on the web to say things like this, I’ve even seen it on TC (although they were more or less promptly banned when spotted by moderator or administrator). It’s terrifyingly and saddeningly the norm.

    • Arguing wtih one right now on the allergic pagan.

  20. I mostly agree with thelettuceman. As somebody who is a non-American Heathen magician, who has worked with and had results with PCP and sees it as a thing in and of itself which is of a different ontological quality to working within a hard polytheist context, I will mention a few things:

    1. Nobody on either side gets to say what my spiritual practice is, and whether it’s worthy except me and my gods. No Asa-pope, no Elder, no government. It is between me and my Elder Kin.

    2. The strident voices on either side of the so-called ‘community’ do not speak for everyone. There are many many folk going about their lives and practice who have no business or interest in theological punchups and find the internet/American relationship to religion to be just plain bloody *odd*.

    3. Applying the word ‘community’ to a disparate group of people and practices, as if they are in some way the same, for ease of discussion, seems counterproductive. There seems very little of the quality that actually makes a community involved in many discussions and interactions both online and off..

    4.Generalisations often cause problems when passions are involved, and personal attacks of any form, whether they are ad hominem, threats of physical violence, or passive agressive complaints, are pretty much detrimental to communication and dialogue which are both pre-requisites for ‘community’.

    Being angry, – even if rightfully so – seldom does any good in the longer term. Being hotheaded leads to assumptions and fuckups. Discourse often benefits from taking a step back. Being on the defensive – even while attacking – means all sides tend to get in their respective corners and stay there in order to guard against a perceived loss of identity or integrity..

    This is fine, provided one’s willing to accept that nobody is going to change their minds on either side. At which point, everything’s moot and people benefit from just walking the hell away.

    But when it gets into a win-lose perception? Well, nobody likes to lose, even if it was never about winning or losing in the first place.

    • Agreed 100% with this.

      With one small caveat.

      Nobody on either side gets to say what my spiritual practice is

      As a corollary of that, no one gets to redefine traditions according to their idiosyncratic views. This all started because some of us were saying that honoring superheroes isn’t the same as honoring Achilles and Martin Luther King Jr. (And “not the same” does not mean “your way is wrong” just that it’s different.) Cue cries of oppression.

      • Ashley Moore

        what i think is the TRUE madness here is just how small this started; with people pointing out errant flaws in argument and gruesome misunderstandings of ancient to modern definitions and somehow it turns into all this. and then justifiable silliness ensued. it really could have ended with the shenanigans you and i posted you know sannion, it really could have. come on, railroad trestle!

        but no..NO.. this somehow degrades into galina being raped by a horse. …because horse dicks save the day. you know…because ‘fundamentalists’ are ‘destroyed’ by other ‘fundamentalists’ wielding hate speech, misogyny.. and horse dicks!!

        …because there are fundamental rules somewhere…someWHERE telling people that when in disagreement, make fun of someones clothing and sexual preferences and then as a last result destroy them with a horse dick. because how galina accessorizes clearly has EVERYTHING to do with just everything. pagan fashion police just got paid overtime if you ask me; i am sure these individuals are paragons of aesthetic and couture, i am sure. i mean had we be in person i would pull out my GLORIOUS effeminate snaps and french accents to classify specifically what sooty fashion all the pagans should be wearing this week. and i swear with that horse dick of oppression, they show accessorize with these shoes:
        look it comes with the shotgun and EVERYTHING.

        in all this, i feel the most bad for this horse of questionable sexuality, what did HE do anyway? these FB comments seems to have a slightly vegan edge to it, so in lieu of this why then is this horse of questionable sexuality being subjected to human intercourse regardless of justification? i mean maybe i am reading alot into this but there are SO MANY flaws in that conversation alone that my brain…just my brain.

        i still think there should be cultus to lokis lizard speedo..and now i wanna add to this alter the horse dick OF DESTROYING OPPRESSION…and those shoes, because guuurrrll.

        cue oppression? lol sannion. lol.


        • Ashley Moore


          and then as a last resort*
          no result.


        • I have missed you. :)

          • Ashley Moore

            aw thanks. :)

            i missed reading stuff that wasn’t crazy..and i come back to MORE OF IT.

            i needed to get away from the internet for a little while. the personal attacks were making me quite nauseous and spiritual matters are far more important especially when it seems these types of people are woefully unable to reached via the internet.

            we need physical sit downs, i swear. none of this would be happening to this degree (at least to this..furiousness) face to face.
            however i would pull out those horse shoes. ;)

            • Spiritual stuff should ALWAYS take precedence.

              And I couldn’t agree with you more. Meetups, radio shows, videos, phone calls, letter writing, etc. all of the old ways we used to communicate and interact with each other before text came to dominate everything – are a remedy to all of this constant drama. We’re animals. Thinky animals, admittedly. But all of those sense-cues are there for a reason. There’s so much more to communication than writing or even talking, and I think we miss out on some of the most vital aspects of it when we ignore that.

              Admittedly it’s tough. A lot of us are really isolated and the internet is our primary means of socialization. Even if we had people, there are ways of interacting that can only be done online. I love polyvalence and media and the web is great for that.

              But in the end, it’s all about balance.

              • Ashley Moore

                EXACTLY. FUCKING YES.

                text is ruining us as a species. i swear by this.

                totally TOTALLY agreed.

                well media is all wonderful but face to face is just so critically important. its dangerous socialization, sometimes to much access is simply to much. if for no other reason the internet facilitates so much destructive (both self and to others) behavior that none of it is being snuffed out early on, so people are just living this way and believing its acceptable because there life has turned into being nothing but text and internet boxworld, where the only validation gottan is through typeface and when its denied, VIOLENCE ensues because our mammalian mind cannot understand why we are being denied THIS as well. we as an animal have lost our contact with our other animals in a truly meaningful way, so our new camaraderie is typeface and a glass screen. its no wonder this is the norm when you look at the way everything is heading.

                its funny you should say that, because i think balance is lacking in every conceivable format in modern society. its screamingly obvious everywhere you look.

                • Yeah, that’s the thing. A lot of people have this sort of kneejerk reaction, “Oh my god! The internet / Facebook / smart phones / annoyance of the moment is destroying humanity / the earth / whatever.”

                  No. The problem is us, and always has been.

                  What these things do is amplify certain of our innate tendencies. If used properly and with due moderation pretty much nothing is an evil in and of itself. Except meth. And hispter mustaches. And worshiping Batman.

                  • Ashley Moore

                    AND hipster mustaches. yes.

                    oh i am not arguing the problem not being humans, thats obvious. see when it becomes the only means of socialization thats where the problem lyes for the human using it. no the media, the human element involved in it. the human could practice said balance, but when there are no other humans as a means of socializing, i think many a damage could be done to the humans brain. this is of course totally dependent on the individual’s innate mind frame and psychological wiring, as the damage would vary widely i think across the board, but i do still think my point remains.

                    • Yup. And you see almost the same exact responses when you raise valid concerns about our use of such things. Not condemning them, just questioning the impact they have. (And, really, I think we should be trying to be mindful of everything in our lives, not just our tech.) But man, people get super defensive on me all the time when I mention that I don’t do Facebook or have a cell phone. The other night one of my co-workers said he’d text me the picture of a problem customer and I said I didn’t own one, and he started vehemently assuring me that there’s nothing wrong with phones, it’s entirely possible to use them responsibly and I shouldn’t judge another person’s personal choices. And I’m like “Riiiiiiight …. No problem at all there.” and went back to cleaning the grill.

                    • Bryon Bragason von Ringer

                      Hey now!

                      I grew this handlebar mustache out after seeing Tom Hardy in the movie “Bronson”. That some hipster douches have also begun copying me (and people from the “Chap” subculture) is not the same as it being a “hipster mustache”. Unless you’re saying that Kaiser Wilhelm II was a “hipster”? :D

                  • And the only reason I object to Batmanolatry is because I work with the inspiration for the Joker, so of course I would. ;)

                    But note I said work with not worship, because Harlequin is a very different sort of spirit than Melampos or Spider. Which amuses me so much. People are spinning this like it’s a black and white issue. It’s more mauve, actually.

                    • Ashley Moore

                      people are weird how they get all jumpy. makes me think there doing something WAY MORE sketchy then i would have previously thought. and i am in totally in agreement with being mindful of everything and i take that to a level most people don’t even attempt to give a fuck about. from what is made specifically into my clothing, to my food, to media or downright everything (especially since so much has made me so ill my entire life). its just how my brain works; details details details. hence why i find it truly astonishing when others don’t work that way, because for me its just innate.

                      lol well i think thats obvious by now. ;)

                      it should be black-watch plaid. or mauve plaid!!….and now i think of granny punk rockers. yes.

                      anyways, i think people trying to spin things is half the problem right there.

      • Exactly!

        “Your understanding of history is wrong” ≠ “Your practice is wrong”

        I’m willing to concede that I wasn’t always clear on that, but you’d think that basic reading comprehension skills might have prevented some people from taking personal offence.

        • Ashley Moore


          well its ironic when you realize that since so many individuals’ world are wrapped around typeface as a primary means of communication, where all validation is given from, that reading comprehension would be especially honed to give them whatever validation they can claim from it. however it seems the more typeface is relied upon, the worse the reading comprehension BECOMES. which i find utterly fascinating because after all, alot of our functioning as a species is also bent towards listening as well which i think plays a key role because there is always a tone invented behind the typeface thereby triggering the emotional OUTBURST. and because people lack proper inferring skills, it seems many a tone is invented is pushed to facilitate the little means of the reader.

          theres such an errant flaw in all of this thats is utterly goofy to me.

          i think i was super clear on that, but sometimes people just want to believe whatever they invent about you to justify there shit fit. toddler mentality, if you will.

          • Ashley Moore

            ugh fucking typo.

            *there such an errant flaw in all of this, that its utterly goofy to me*
            *it seems many a tone is invented and its pushed to facilitate

            sorry again.

  21. Why not tell people their practice is wrong?

    • If people don’t want to be told they’re wrong then they shouldn’t hold wrong beliefs.

      • Seriously, though. Sometimes different is just different–and that’s one argument to have–and sometimes different is wrong. I don’t think everyone is necessarily obligated to qualify every statement in this with “I’m not saying your practice is wrong; I’m saying it’s not the same as mine.”

        • More importantly: Not only is it not always necessary, it’s not always correct.

          I’ve noticed over the years that a lot of pagans have a hard time distinguishing fact from opinion. Sometimes, this is clearly due to some-one holding the wrong-headed notion that reality itself is subjective, which itself is kind of a gross oversimplification of Berkley’s “immaterialism” —which itself never really struck me as sufficiently sceptical of individual experiences, but not quite to the extent that kids and other non-philosophers on the internet accept that gross oversimplification as indisputable fact, most likely because they saw it featured prominently in an episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The notion of immaterialism may have been influential, but it’s not indisputable, and it’s impossible to properly engage in any sort of debate while holding fast to the wrong belief that it somehow is an indisputed “fact”.

          • Ashley Moore

            oh THAT show, oh that show.

            well i personally think what was the glaring ‘wrong’ thing in all this ‘debate’ is simply the idea of appropriation, which i have seen all this pcp stuff really just being from the get go. well that and fandom just gone haywire and needing religious justification to read a comic book it. thats what this is being presented as at least. which is fine and all; but i still hold steadfast to call a thing, a thing. especially because i still go back to the original article by sunweaver as being just full to the brim with inconsistencies in theory and everyone going all nuts because peoples didn’t say ‘wow your so cool cause you don’t do the old hat shit, those greeks were noobs anyways’

            my issue isn’t so much with something being different, as diversity is awesome. i do however have a problem with willful ignorance, as all this has seemed to have been, again, from the beginning of it rearing its head. will that and just silly to me personally. but i guess thats why the horse dick was so important. for oppression!

            i think trying to wrap something up in a bow with a title that it isn’t is absolutely unhealthy at best and dangerously ignorant at worst. especially because its teetering way to close (and some outright said it) on suggesting all deities and spirits are inherently unreal and can be made as real as these characters are. to me this is all very very ‘wrong’ as is the ‘archetypal’ view of gods/goddesses/spirits/etc. i just think its waaay disrespectful.

            ruadhan i remember this reality discussion being loosely mentioned in another thread on here and i remember reading it and seeing it rife with flawed logic with whoever it was you were talking to. i mentioned this before but i wonder then, if reality to such a person is truly as immaterial as they claim, than other more prominent things could be altered in such a grandiose fashion as bringing a comic book character to literal life. i dare say if people had powers such as that it would be gruesomely wasted on such feats and more needed in..oh..just about anything else. otherwise, isn’t it just selfish and against the ‘modern’ hero definition in the first place? i mean if we’re gonna get all cerebro up in here, then why aren’t there more people doing more shit? i mean thats where alot of this starts getting silly to me too. to take inspiration from these ‘heroes’ in this modern understanding, which is all well in good in of itself, but then have no personal change to benefit one from such inspiration and then behave the exact opposite way on top of it. after a little while i also wonder if all of this was just intentionally inflammatory and just MEANT to piss off those who are perceived as ‘fundamentalists’ as so aptly named; the biggest trolling adventure of them all maybe.

            ::shrugs:: more problems then solutions and to much nonsense. meaningful discussions on reality would be awesome, but…that doesn’t happen. no no, we need more horse stilettos for this one ruadhan.

        • Thank you.

  22. James "TwoSnakes" Stovall

    To see some twit pissing on my friend Nicole’s wedding leaves me with more than a fair amount of anger…Glad I didn’t see it before this weekend, I might have been less kind to some of the people I had to interact with at a local festival, and they likely would not have deserved it.

    • Elizabeth

      Agreed. Nicole is a lovely person and didn’t deserve to be dragged into this when she’s not had anything to do with either the PCP debate anyway.

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