“Vikings”, “Vikings Valhalla”, History and Faith

Poster for the Vikings Valhalla series, showing Harald Sigurdsson, Leif Eriksson and Freydis Eriksdottir holding their weapons in a battle-ready stance, standing around and on top of a smoldering pile of bones, ash and ruined weapons.

Netflix has released all 8 episodes for the second season of Vikings Valhalla, something I have very much been looking forward to. Before I start writing reviews of the episodes, however, I thought I would offer some thoughts on the show and its predecessor, Vikings, along with comments on the show’s portrayal of the characters’ faith and the clash between the Heathen Norse and the Christian English. There are no spoilers for the new season of Valhalla in this article, though I will write openly about events from the first season and from the original Vikings series.

A handsome Viking man with his hair in a topknot and with a neatly trimmed beard looks off into the distance.
Leo Suter as Harald Sigurdsson
One thing that’s important to remember when watching shows like this is that they are dramas first and foremost and are not intended to be seen as historically accurate – which is kind of ironic since the first series aired on the History Channel. It’s best to assume that, while some things are based on actual history, most of it is fictional.

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A Survey On Pagan and/or Heathen Beliefs and Ideals

A hand holding a pen and checking off boxes on a survey form
Close-up Of Businessman Filling Customer Survey Form
A group at Grinnell College is doing a study on the religious and political beliefs of Pagans and/or Heathens, I’ve done the questionnaire for the study and it’s rather interesting and thought-provoking. I also think the results will be quite interesting.

I’m posting the link here in hopes that other Pagans and/or Heathens will also want to respond. The more people who participate, the more accurate the study will be.

If you’re interested, go to https://grinnell.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_00VzyU1huPe0Wjk to participate!

H/T Ryan Smith @heathenryan@sfba.social (Mastodon)

Can Viking Virtues Defeat “Wokeness”?

Arthur Herman, writing at Fox News, is concerned about the “plague of CRT and wokeness”, but he thinks it’s about to end:

The return of Bob Iger to leadership at Disney, and Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter, are signals that the leftist madness that had seized America’s biggest corporations is starting to turn around. Americans are also more aware than ever that this systematic attack on American culture, history, traditional institutions, and the American family has benefited communist China

He also thinks he has the solution for the “leftest madness” (aka progressive policies) – he thinks that conservatives need to adopt more Viking virtues.

I would suggest that the key for doing this can be found in the virtues that brought the first Europeans to the shores of North America, despite the risks and uncertainties — namely the Vikings. The virtues that sustained those intrepid explorers, traders, and settlers, in the world’s most dangerous waters, are precisely the ones Americans will rediscover in 2023.

What kind of virtues does he ascribe to the Vikings? According to Herman, they are the spirit of entrepreneurship, an instinct of workmanship, commitment to family, and meeting all challenges with agility and bold innovation. How do these values challenge progressive policies? It’s not terribly clear, especially since the values he cites are hardly exclusively conservative values. What do I mean? Well, let’s take a look at a couple of his examples.

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