Archive for September, 2012

Barbarian Politics

Posted: September 20, 2012 in Barbarian Philosophy

 

Now, at first glance, you would assume that this is going to some sort of opinionated rant about national politics. But it’s not, and that is my point.

We have established that barbarian society is tribal in nature, whether we are referring to historical Goths or fantasy Cimmerians. Since a tribe is – in essence – an extended family, it stands to figure that a barbarian’s loyalty goes first to his family. That may prove a disappointment to some, for whom their imagined barbarians care little for their own kith and kin.

Real barbarians cherish and respect their progenitors. The Vikings in the sagas loved to introduce themselves by reciting their proud ancestry. 

Many barbaric sagas speak of doing honor to those who have passed, those who have given birth to us, and those who have raised us, even if they have betrayed their barbarian heritage. One form of immortality to these people came in the form of memories. Without a family to carry on your memory, you would, in some way, pass from this world forever. And certainly good honorable memories and those that drive our survivors to erect piles of stones, called cairns, in our memory.

So the family was visible and a barbarian knew that these are the people who bore, raised and fed them. This immediacy is important to a barbarian. Not theories, not faraway strangers.

The tribal government, whether led by a chief or a patriarch/matriarch, is also immediate to a barbarian. They are the people with whom the barbarian has shared his life, his strife, his victories, his defeats. These are people he can trust, who share his values.

Barbarian poems are full of tales about individuals who swear an oath, and go to their death, striving to fulfill that oath. This is how rock-solid the honor of the barbarian has been in the past. Surrounded by those who despise that system of honor and attempt to take advantage of that – to say the least, the barbarian owes little loyalty to these people.

So a barbarian will go to his death defending his family and his tribe. Possibly also he will give similar feelings to nearby, related tribes.

However. A faraway representative from an alien land, who speaks of “The Glory of Rome” and suchlike abstract concepts, he will obtain little from the likes of barbarian tribes. Let him count himself lucky to have survived meeting the barbarians.

What do we glean from this, as neo-barbarians? Certainly we can consider putting first, our kith and kin? Our proven friends? Those who have proven their honor and loyalty?

This is not to suggest that we are to attack others, unless those in our circle of loyalty is truly threatened! And only committing like for like. We have seen how “tribal” rivalries in the former Yugoslavia have torn that land asunder, leaving it nearly unlivable for any tribe at all.

We do, after all, live in a modern age, and not in the Dark Ages.

But I counsel not to be fooled by those emissaries from Rome, who bring us fistuls of gold, if we will but turn mercenary and betray those of our own tribe! “The Glory of Rome” is a concept for Romans, and for fools.

For a wilderness-bred barbarian, from a thousand generations of barbarians, ordinary walking – stealthy without thinking about it – is one “gait”, or mode of walking.

On the other hand, when you’re trying to sneak up to some mountain beast that you intend to carve into your dinner, or some monstrosity from the outer void that has some juicy wench in its clutches…

Where were we? Sneaking up on something with utmost quiet and care.

As you move forward, lift one foot off of the ground. Move it forward to the place where you intend to set it down. Now, slowly lower it until your heel begins to make contact with the ground. Your weight is STILL on one foot.

Gradually roll your foot forward until the whole sole of your foot is in contact with the ground.

NOW slowly transfer your weight onto that foot.

It’s a good exercise, even if your need for stealth is not that extreme.