It Worked! – Some Intitial Plans

Happy Tyr’s Day!!!

So the switch in address worked and so I can post to Facebook again. What this does inspire me to do is break down some objectives and start setting some vision for myself. I have four, maybe five areas, of my life that need some work and development of habits to reach and I am hoping this blog will do what it has always done – keep me on task and focused.

  1. Career – The issue is for me putting my Poltical Science degree and my desire to be more educaitonally focused into practice. From a habit standpoint, I have a certificaiton that was delayed due to COVID-19 issues but now I need ot finish it by February so that I can be in a postion to look for new jobs early on. The habit is simply to get some things done every day. That’s all I feel comfortable sharing as recent events show to me my haters are still active.
  2. Health – Need to get back to weightlifitng and nutrition being solid. Going ot the gym and keep the bad food out of the house are good first objectives. My main goal is to get back ot where I was early 2020 and then go from there. Once the weather clears up around here- walking and hiking will be back on my list as well.
  3. Atheist Activism – My YouTube channel is a start but writing and being invovled with other things will lead ot other opportunities. Just need to do some things so my channel is better and more active.
  4. Writing – easist one to see. Need to read more, write more and blog more.
  5. Technical Hobby – this is a new one and still in its infancy as far as an idea. I want a hobby that invovles something technical or scientific – mostly just ot push my mind a little.

All in all the issue is ot get back ot regular habits that keep depression away and make progress on these areas.

As for this blog I am working on a regular rotation along with some posts that are more freestyle so to speak. The one thing I want for sure is to keep them shorter. A blog article from start to finish should take less than an hour from sitting down until ready to post.

Thanks to all of you for sticking with me.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Atheist Activism, Writing and Financial Peace” – The Rabyd Skald

See the source image

Happy Mani’s Day!

Most of the rest of my vision points have a lot to do with maintaining Youtube Channel, Writing for Publication and Financial Peace.

YouTube:

My YouTube channel – The Rabyd Atheist – has becoem my new pulpit. I am commited to Atheist activism and this is one avenue. Part of my vision points is to be a regular contributer to FFRF and The Clergy Project as well becasue they have done so much for me.

Writing:

My basical goal is to write boook for publicaiton and thus the 1000 words per day. This blog is more of a personal tool to keep me focused but it is a part practicing my craft as a wordsmith.

Financial:

20 years in a career that provided nothing for retirement would e a scary prospect for many and it is for me as well. The plan is simple to say. 1) Get out of debt, 2) Buy a small house with garage and 3 ) Invest as much as possible. I need a new career mostly for this reason.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“The Viking Mind” – Odin’s Eye

Happy Woden’s (Odin’s) Day.    

Discussion:

I think the greatest struggle I have with my deconversion and subsequent departure of any belief in the supernatural has been to change the way I think.  The pagan mindset is the closest I think to the naturalist atheist and I know that some atheists are indeed pagans who deal in the spiritual and perhaps view gods and goddesses, not as supreme beings but simply very powerful spiritual ones that are mistaken by others as gods. Atheists reject the idea of a single supreme being that has authority over them as even existing, but that still leaves a lot of room for variation.

I guess in my own small way I embrace my pagan side though pagan philosophy and in this sense perhaps I do have a Viking mind about these things.  As my meme above states, I run on a pagan atheist OS. Thus certain conversations make no sense to me as either an atheist or a pagan so there is at least some camaraderie of thought between the two viewpoints.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Meditation:

The Viking mind meditates on the practical.  As much as religion tries to give substance to knowledge gaps, the true value of the pagan mindset is practical reality and it meshes very well. There is a philosophy of how to live one’s life without fear of the gods or God, no made-up original sin to manipulate and control others with or cause guilt for actions simply by being human and the afterlife is an open question, not a definitive black and white one.

Mystery:

Whatever mysteries of life their maybe, I  do not face them groveling at the feet of some invisible imaginary power but standing on my own two feet win or lose. Paganism does not place humanity in the center of the will of the gods, nor does it make them subservient, just a part of the greater whole. I no longer spend my thoughts worrying over sin and how I will either condemn me to help if I don’t repent on time or the fact sin is so broadly defined that it is inescapable just being a human being. I embrace my humanity as a good thing and the world around me as something o be understood and necessary for my survival. I certainly don’t dwell on the afterlife preferring rather like a Viking to live this life as fully as I can for as long as I can.

Spirituality:

My spirituality now centers on my own well being and the well being of others, something I could not say as a Christian.  All the Christian message requires making people feel like shit so God can lift them up. My mentality now is that people are generally good with a few exceptions and that anyone can lift themselves up when needed.

Conclusion:

Of course, the Vikings did rape, murder, and pillage, but name me a people group at some time in history that hasn’t.  The issue now is that being a Viking in mind is more metaphorical and can be turned to good.  I don’t think the same can be said of most religious mindsets outside of Paganism and Agnostic/Atheists.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Atheist Identity” – Odin’s Eye

Happy Woden’s (Odin’s) Day.    

Discussion:

In the United States, the Christian majority has done a good job of demonizing the word ‘atheist’.  It is not as bad as in some countries where being an atheist can get you killed, but the notion that atheists are somehow immoral and can’t be trusted is a well known Christian mischaracterization. Our lack of belief n any god is what supposedly does this as who would keep you in check without an all-powerful big brother?

Recently I started a Youtube channel The Rabyd Atheist.  I know that this brings with it certain risks, but I am glad to have a pulpit of sorts again.  I have never been good without a cause to advocate for and now I feel this channel is starting to fill that need. It, however, comes with pushback and I understood that going into it.

Embracing the identity ‘atheist’ has been a liberating and scary proposition.  I know the hatred some people have for atheists and it is not always calm and peaceful. But I plan on doing my part to make a stronger case that atheists are compassionate loving people.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Meditation:

I meditate often on this puzzle and how it has changed me and I have to say it is one of the struggles I have.  Not that choosing to come out as an atheist wasn’t the right and correct thing to do; but that there are consequences that have to be carefully weighed.

Mystery:

The only mystery of self-identity is now – who am I that I am no longer a preacher. It has dogged me since I left my last church, but I think it will involve being an educator of some kind and an advocate. This mystery is now about how that is specifically going to play out.

Spirituality:

Spiritually speaking, I am very conscious now of my lack of relationships and need many more. I also need a greater sense of confidence that comes with my new purpose.  I do now, however, feel that this is less of a problem now that I seem to have taken some first steps down the path.

Conclusion:

My identity is forming, it is not quite perfectly clear what it will be. But it isn’t as cloudy as it used to be. I am happy about that.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Reforging the Sword” – Odin’s Eye

Happy Woden’s (Odin’s) Day.    

Discussion:

In Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings Aragorn is the bearer of a broken blade that is reforged by the elves.  Andúril is the new weapon and becomes a central weapon in the struggle against evil as wielded by the last of the line of the kings of Gondor.

My recent work in the yOutube realm has placed me once more in the position of preacher and teacher and with a familiar topic – Bible and Theology.  I don’t speak of the bible being the sword that needs to be reforged so much as my knowledge and understanding of it.  Before I used this knowledge to try to build people’s faith.  I see this now as a flawed and broken weapon.

In a very real sense, I see this as reforging this knowledge into a new weapon.  A weapon to use against my former faith and no I don’t seem my turn from gospel preacher to atheist as good to bad but rather the other way around.  The real evil is religious people who do evil things in the name of God and the Bible.  In reforging my sword of Biblical knowledge, I plan on using it to fight this foe.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Meditation:

As I was meditating on this change, I realized that I might actually have to reach for and open my Bible on my shelf.  Something I have not done in well over a year and a half.  I found myself feeling old strength and knowledge flow back through my veins again as I used my knowledge of the bible and theology again but it was very different.  I can see the obvious flaws with the Bible and theology in ways I never saw before.

Mystery:

The mystery for me is to unravel the power of religion that it gains over people.  To do that I need to understand why people believe nonsense and how to combat it.  In the realm of Christianity, I can see why people want to believe.  Eternal life and some sense fo purpose are good motivators.  But if the promise is false and if one takes the time to determine their own purpose, then what is the need?

Spirituality:

For my own sense of purpose, I am developing a sense of being an advocate for atheist issues, in particular, the separation fo church and state.  It fits well with my political science degree and my religious background.  I feel in the sense of atheist spirituality I might have started to see the need here and between this blog, my YouTube Channel The Rabyd Atheist and my desire to either teach in the public school or work for non-profit that has anti-theist aims regarding church and state. I have figured out that I will probably never be happy unless I am advocating for a cause and/or educating.

Conclusion:

I suppose I am taking the material of my old beliefs and education and forging them into something new – a new better and freedom-loving something.  – a new sword of truth.  Forged from the materials and shards of the old one.  My own Andúril.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Atheism and the Higher Virtues” – Of Wolves and Ravens – The Higher Virtues

Happy Mani’s Day

Discussion:

Turning to the B Side of my philosophical discussions we hit the Higher Virtues.  Of Course, this is the first time I have really considered Love, Justice, and Faith as an atheist, but there are some important points to be made overall.  I know I will handle each of these separately in the coming weeks; so I am not so much interested in defining them as considering them as a whole.

The concept of higher unifying virtues is something I introduced later after embracing the nine Noble Virtues (NNV). The idea was to simply ask the question of does the NNV combine into others and what place did Love, Justice, and Wisdom have?  The end result was that Each corresponds to the three of the NNV closely but all the virtues play into Love, Justice, and Wisdom.

There is an intention here of the highest purpose.  I am not leaving my life to chance by following the higher virtues, but rather make each decision asking those three questions: Is this loving?  Is this just?  Is this wise? The morse specific analysis is achieved by looking at the NNV when the situation is not clear in an area. This has been a proven form for me.

Atheists look at the practical side of moral decisions far more than others. they have no higher power to please.  NO higher authority to appeal to; so every ethical and moral decision is made by a great deal of thought. The virtues, including the higher ones, guide this for me specifically.

To the Wolves and Ravens:

“Feed the Wolves, but Listen to the Ravens first.”

Needs (Geri):

Virtue became a strong need for me after leaving my Christian faith.  I have no doubt that others would have just said ‘fuck it’ and do what they wanted.  But I know that survival and prosperity of life are never achieved by just saying ‘fuck it’.   Everyone needs a code to survive and prosper.  Following the higher virtues is about intention.

Wants (Freki):

Prosperity and survival are the end results of the following virtues as a general rule.  Something that all of us should want and strive for. Virtue leads to this end and the ideas of being a loving, just, and a wise person just make that all easier.  Definitely, something I want.

Reason (Huginn):

I came in large part to these conclusions because of rationally considering what needed to guide my life.  No gods, no masters; just my own wants and desires guided by reason and wisdom. This lines up very well with the atheist rationality I have decided is the best course for my life.

Wisdom (Muninn):

That said, wisdom reminds me that human beings have an emotional side to them,  These passions need wise guidance. They need to have some virtue guiding them or they lead our lives to lack intention and effort.

Conclusion:

As an atheist, the Higher virtues now mean more to me than ever.  It is the simple asking if any action is loving, just and wise that has led to some great decisions.  It has also allowed me to avoid some of the pitfalls of living this life.  My hope is that this path will lead to the prosperity and wise life I am looking for.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Asatru Virtues” – (Asatru – Part 25) – The Pagan Pulpit

Happy Sol’s Day!

Announcements:

We don’t pray here – we figure God, the gods, goddesses, or whatever powers that be (if any) either know already, don’t give a fuck, or are busy with more important matters than our petty stuff. We also kind of assume that they expect us to do stuff that we can do for ourselves and that we will do them ourselves and not be lazy. We also believe in being good friends, so we don’t presume on our friendship with the powers that be by asking them all the time for stuff while giving them nothing in return.

We also don’t take an offering here.  We figure the powers that be probably don’t need it.  Let’s be honest, offerings are not given to the divine powers, they are given to an organization to support it.  Just being honest. God, the gods or whatever never sees a dime, farthing or peso of that money; it all goes to the church, mosque or shrine.

Theme Song: “Pagan Fire” – The Dragon Fire Drummers

Meditation:

 

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Text: 

See the source image

If you want more details about Asatru, I can’t recommend this book enough.

Sermon:

If you have followed this blog for any length of time, then you know about the Nine Noble Virtues of Asatru.  Honor, Courage, Truth, Self-Reliance, Industriousness, Hospitality, Discipline, Perseverance and Fidelity are very much a part of this blog and my life as a whole now.  My becoming an atheist did not affect that negatively.  If anything it highlights the need to have some sort of system to think and evaluate each moral decision.  The virtues serve this capacity well.

Living Tru is about following the virtues most of all.  They will be a part of everyday decisions.  Rituals and practices occupy a space of time. but the virtues are at all times. There is no time of not living virtuously.

When people ask me why I didn’t just follow Christian virtues and just be an atheist Christian, my answer is almost always the same- the pagans have better ethics.  Sorry, Christianity has done a lot of evil in the name of its faith and justified it in name of doing it for Christ.  In paganism, the virtues offer no such excuses nor faith in the gods. You follow the virtues or you are not virtuous. No excuses or exceptions.

That said how the virtues can be interpreted has some grey area as life is not black and white. Rather life is a mess and the virtues try to offer some way to sort that out and stay on a stable path. To live Tru is the goal. Waling Tru the mission of The Grey Wayfarer

Parting Thought:

 

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I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“My YouTube Channel – The Rabyd Atheist” – The Rabyd Skald

Happy Sif’s Day!

This last week I started a YouTube Channel as sort of a pulpit for my atheist activism.  The Rabyd Atheist will be my platform for talking about my personal journey from faith to reason, my theological problems with faith and my critiques as a skeptic of the Bible.  For you the readers of The Grey Wayfarer, I will be adding a post on Sif’s Day at 10 am with all the videos I posted that week. That way if you jsut want to wait until Sif’s day and watch them all, you can do so.

My main objectives for this Channel are talked about in my first three videos which I will provide the links below.  I am currently still looking for my first subscribers so if you have a YouTube account and want to subscribe to my channel please do so.  The first goal is to get monetized and I need 1000 subscribers to do that and people to watch about 4000 hours of content.  Then I can apply to make some money.

Posting this to my personal accounts also helps keep people in my family and freinds list from being so alarmed as it is more neutral, but I haven’t been secretive about my atheistic paganism for some time.  If you have been reading this blog you know.

The Rabyd Atheist – Introduction (first video) 

Welcome to the Rabyd Atheist

My Deconversion Story

Hope you enjoy it.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“My Medallions” – Odin’s Eye

Happy Woden’s (Odin’s) Day.    

Discussion:

I was never one for any kind of jewelry when I was a Christian, but since my deconversion, I have had a small taste for a medallion necklace around my neck.  My Medallions alternate depending on the day.  Most of them have some meaning or significance for me.

Sol’s Day – Valknut with Rune Circle – it represents my new philosophy of life with the nine sides of the triangles being representative of the Nine Noble Virtues.  The three triangles being representative of Love, Justice, and Wisdom.  The rune circle being representative of the mysteries of life. The overall idea being the following of virtue allows me to engage the mysteries of life effectively. Also, the Valknut is associated with death so there is a constant reminder of my mortality.

Mani’s Day – Wolf Yin-Yang Symbol with Rune Circle – A reminder to stay balanced while engaging the mysteries of life.

Tyr’s Day – Small Thor’s Hammer.  I am looking for something like a Viking shield with axes or something similar.  More of a martial reminded of courage.

Woden’s Day – I wear a Viking compass with a rune circle that reads – ‘Not all who wander are lost” originally it was representative of my desire to wander and search for truth but it is also a medallion I probably will wear hiking as well.

Thor’s Day – Wolf Thor’s Hammer – Its a much larger thor’s hammer with a wolf’s head as the handle.  The need for savage courage at times is represented and the not so subtle reminder to men and women that with this person is an alpha wolf.

Frigg and Freya’s Day – Two Wolves Facing Each Other Howling – One wolf soul calling to another.

Sif’s Day – Wolf Head (Fenrir) – I reminder that my end, my final battle will come.  My own personal Ragnarok.  Live life fully and savagely.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Meditation:

My medallions have become part of my meditation.  Mostly they mark the end of it as I reach for the one for the day and then place it around my neck to end the meditation time.  Each of them represents something heart oriented and thus are good closing thoughts.

Mystery:

There is much mystery to life and the medallions call me to engage it with a certain attitude – with virtue (most notably courage and honor), remaining balanced, and a savage heart.  To be a searcher for Truth that doesn’t take shit from anyone. To live for a savage love of life.  My own mortality coming motivating me to act today whenever possible.

Spirituality:

I guess this is one small part of a ritualistic spirituality of mine.  I don’t believe any of these medallions have and spiritual power of their own.  They, however, do remind me of the quality of heart I wish to possess and stand to others that I am not ‘safe’.  I am a pagan atheist.  If the word ‘pagan’ causes someone to fear me, so be it. I am not out to be loved anymore.  Fear, respect, and honor, yes.  Loved is a bonus I will accept but you have to take me as I am and my medallions tell you a little about that.

Conclusion:

I will continue to wear my medallions whenever I can.  I find they become great discussion starters at times. Mostly they remind me of things that are important to me at a core level – the level of passion and strength inside myself.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Fidelity, Atheism, and Asatru” – Of Wolves and Ravens – Fidelity

Happy Mani’s Day

Discussion:

I always have a little twinge of guilt when I write about fidelity or loyalty.  I have had an affair.  I am not proud of it but it happened. I can’t say that all of it was bad either as the reasons I did it were real and in some ways could be justified as I felt at the time loyalty was harmful to me in a lot of ways.   My loyalty to my wife was harmful because it seemed to benefit her far more than it did me.  It led to a passive-aggressive relationship.  My sarcasm is usually playful but at the time with her, it could be biting and it was the same the other way.

As an atheist, fidelity has a give and take to it.  For a long time, I felt love was to sacrifice even to the point of being loyal to a fault.  If anything has changed it has the realization that the person I need to love the most and be loyal to the most is myself. I am all I really have no matter what others may do.  The blind loyalty expected of Christians I now see for what it is – the groundwork to use people for your own ends by playing on their loyalty.  Pride is removed in Christian loyalty which means you can make people do anything because they have no honor and no shame.

Fidelity under Asatru, however, is different.  It has honor as its foundation so no amount of loyalty should robe you of your pride.  If anything fidelity should either build your pride and thus lead to greater honor or it should cause you shame when you fail so you work to make it right and truly a two-way street. Above all, there is no demand to sacrifice your loyalty to yourself – ever.

To the Wolves and Ravens:

“Feed the Wolves, but Listen to the Ravens first.”

Needs (Geri):

The need here for me was to change my expectations of loyalty to myself.  If there has been one struggle that is affecting all my relationships it is the fact that sometimes I have walked away because I still have my pride and I will not deal with people who do not respect it. I will not tolerate disloyalty, even from myself, and the challenge is to know when that is happening.

Wants (Freki):

What I want is to restore my sense of honor and loyalty to myself. I do not want compromise to the point where I am in any relationship that has all the benefits or even most of them are going one way – away from myself to the other person.  Mutually beneficial is what I am after here; where loyalty is the strength of those relationships.

Reason (Huginn):

The problem is I can usually rationally see what needs to be done in each relationship.  I have done the infamous INFJ door slam to several people but it takes a lot for me to get there. Mostly though I don’t want to cause pain to others because I get a feedback loop emotionally.  It’s kind fo bitch to know how far you can go before the negative emotions of others start to affect you emotionally.  Reasonably, I can see each relationship and know what to do or should do. It is the emotional lines in the sand I don’t want to cross that can get in the way.

Wisdom (Muninn):

The wisdom is never let loyalty to be slavery to the other person.  Someone who cares about you and is loyal to you will want you to be free and not want you to be their slave. If they cross that line too many times it might be time to let go – self-respect, honor, and fidelity to self are far more important than any relationship.

Conclusion:

Fidelity is important to me and mostly the shift caused by the crisis and becoming an atheist has been to be a person who is loyal first to himself and then everyone else.  My moral philosophy and my loyalty to it and myself are the central things in my life. Every other relationship needs to build that loyalty to myself or respect it, or I am going to have a problem with it.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!