Happy Tyr’s Day
Having finished the Nine Noble Virtues it is time to flip the subjects for Of Wolves and Ravens to the flip side. So for the next nine weeks the subjects will be more Side B
- Eastern Philosophy
- Western Philosophy
- Political Science
These are either the Higher Virtues or other philosophical elements that guide my thinking. Subjects where my philosophy is more real and concretely applied to the real world of my life.
Today, however, we return to the general subject of virtue. Mostly the rationale behind pursuing virtue as opposed to Religion as a way of moving higher. I suppose it comes back to the Marcus Aurelius quote I keep using.
My main issue these days is to live a good life and so following good virtues is the path to that. The Nine Noble Virtues (NNV) of Asatru are good ones to follow and no matter what your religion or faith, I don’t think you could fault them. Virtue is a Human trait and if anything is responsible for the good in the world it is when people take their human capacity and guide it by good virtues.
To the Wolves and Ravens:
At this point things will get a little more personal. After departing from my Christian faith, I knew I would need something to guide my life philosophy. I think that is one of the problems of struggling with faith. You hold your principles from that faith, but the basis for doing so is missing. I needed to figure out what that basis was and how I could hold a system of philosophy to guide myself and my character without having faith in a religion. Virtue is an old discussion in philosophy and one that has always had a lot of merit to me. So I found that the need for a system of virtue was very much justified.
I also wanted virtue. One of the things that you get accused of when you leave the faith is somehow you are now lesser of a person. It is never said but it is there. Your ‘lost’, ‘going to follow your sinful nature now’, you are not as ‘good’ in the eyes of the people of the faith you left. Part of my embracing virtue is I want to show how bankrupt a notion it is to believe you need to follow a certain religion or faith to be a good person. That you can be a better person morally without faith or religion is a hard concept for people to accept for some reason. I want to prove that it can be done.
The rational reason for following virtue for me is that it upholds my thoughts that a person can actually use religion for evil while calling themselves good. After all they are just following their authority of their holy book or holy man. Even if that action causes harm to others, in religion it is still justified because you were doing what your authority told you.
I can’t do that following my philosophy of virtue. Virtue demands that an action must also cause no harm to others whenever possible. It recognizes that appeal to authority is not a rational act but a logical fallacy. Therefore to just follow authority blindly is not virtuous, rather quite the opposite.
I feel that no matter what the twists and turns of my life are now, that the NNV allows me to navigate each fork and crossroad with wisdom. I am not letting some blind guide pull me along. Rather my eyes are open and I makes sure each life decision is guided by principle and virtue. I do take into account what is best for me, but I also no longer think that shows a lack of wisdom but rather it demonstrates wisdom.
On May 28th, 2018 I was no longer a pastor or a Christian officially. I even have a letter from my former church that fired me retroactively to May 27th to prove it. I keep that letter because there is a line in it that motivates me. From time to time I pull it out and read it:
“This decision was based on the fact that you no longer have the character, ability or right to be the shepherd of any flock”
Well, I plan on making them eat those judgmental and arrogant words and I plan on doing it by living a better life than I ever had as a Christian. I plan on doing that by following virtue. By so doing, I will move higher than I ever have before. I don’t see my leaving the flawed hypocritical virtues of Christianity to follow the NNV as a step downward, but rather a step upward. Time the pierce the sky and live a good life.
The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.