Seeing as I made part 1
of my series on how I became an atheist about music it is of course not surprising that I make part 2 about music as well. Yes, music did play a huge part of my life in my formative years, and I am taking this opportunity to relive my youth (heck, I am a few days away from 40th birthday so don't begrudge me this).
Part 2 is really not as easy to encapsulate in 1 blogpost so I'm going to link to the entire album Hammerheart by Bathory.
Read the lyrics and understand the following:
This is an album about the ancient vikings, who were living their lives and then got "converted" to christianity. It's a shocking example of how a proud race (with detestable morals, to be sure) got neutered.
has got a few songs from the album Hammerheart if you care to register.
Yes, as the songs testify to, the ancient Vikings had a religion before christianity but Christianity was forced upon them and this was not done by reason but rather by the power of the sword.
To get the whole context I suggest you read through the lyrics of the whole album Hammerheart
and pay particular attention to part 7: One Rode To Asa Bay.
Here is the story of a proud race beaten down by force and the sword of Christ. The Christ of love and forgiveness!? Or so they tell us anyway...
Of course the morals of the ancient vikings are questionable in today's light, but is it much different from today's interventions in the middle east? Or the appropriation of the promised land in the late 1940s?
How many UN resolutions has Israel ignored in the past 60 years? And what consequences has it really faced?
My answer would be a lot and remarkably little, respectively.
The power of religion is all around us and it shapes our countries' foreign policies to a stunning degree. More so than many atheist would care to admit to.
One man rode the way through the woods
Bathory - hammerheart (1990) - One Rode To Asa Bay
Down to Asa bay
Where dragon ships had sailed to sea
More times than one could say
To see with own eyes the wonder
People told of from man to man
The God of all almightyness
Had arrived from a foreign land
The rumours told of a man
Who had come from the other side the seas
Carrying gold cross around neck in chain
And spoke in strange tongue of peace
He had come with strange men in armour
Dressed in purple shirts and lace
Smelling not of beer but flowers
And with no hair in face
And the bold man carrying cross
Had told all one of Asa bay
The God of all man woman child had come
To them all save
And to thank Lord of Heaven
One should build to God a house
And to save one's soul from Hell
One should be baptised and say vows
A man of pride with the Hammer told new God
To build his house on own
And spoke loud of the Gods of their fathers
Not too long time gone
The rumours said the man with a beard like fire
And the Hammer in chain
By men in armour silenced was and by
Their swords was slain
Those who did not pay the one coin
Of four to man of new God
Whipped was twenty and put in chains then locked
By their neck to the log (To the log...)
And so all of Asa bay did build
A house of the cross
Every hour of daylight they did sweat
Limbs ached because faith does cost
And on the day two hundred
There it stood white to the sky
The house of the God of the cross
Big enough to take two dragon ships inside
And all of Asa bay did watch
The wonder raise to the sky
Now must the God of the cross be pleased
Just outside the circle of the crowd
One old man did stand
He looked across the waters
And blotted the sun out of his eyes with one hand
And his old eyes could almost see
The dragon ships set sail
And his old ears could almost hear
Men of great numbers call out Oden's hail
And though he did know already
Though he turned face towards sky
And whispered silent words forgotten
Spoken only way up high
Now this house of a foreign God does stand
Now must they leave us alone
Still he heard from somewhere in the woods
Old crow of wisdom say
...people of Asa land, it's only just begun...
[Dedicated to Mr. Dean Andersson]
"it's only just begun..."
how true that is.