The Making and Breaking of Deities & Demigods - Page 11
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  1. #101
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    @maceochaid

    The attitude of the Scandinavian archeologists emerges from fieldwork, as different archeologists assess the evidence at their sites across Scandinavia and other Nordic countries.

    The main reasons for the shift include the following.

    • The project to establish a ‘German race’ that began over a century ago, has failed.
    • Relatedly, the project to establish a Pan-German religion, has failed.

    • What is today Germany was ethnically diverse. Unrelated tribes adopt the language of neighbors.
    • Roman evidence requires caution, ‘Germania’ is a territory that includes Celtic tribes and other tribes.
    • Indeed the ‘Germanii’ tribe is probably Celtic.

    • The linguistic category ‘Proto-Germanic’ is probably a misnomer.
    • Rather than being the ‘recipient’ of this language, Scandinavia is probably its originator.
    • Proto-Germanic seems the Nordic linguistic environment that develops after East Europeans enter from the Baltics.
    • Germanic languages are essentially an out-of-Denmark radiation South, West, and East.

    • The Norse belief systems are less like the Mediterranean ones (Roman, Greek, Canaanite/Phoenician).
    • and more like shamanic neighboring ethnicities, (Sámi, Suomi).
    • The only evident Norse spiritual leader is a shaman, the vǫlva, always a woman.
    • Norse beliefs are shamanic.
    • Ways of relating to nature beings (trolls) in Scandinavian folkbelief, appear conservative and indigenous.
    • Aboriginal Norse beliefs appear primarily egalitarian animism
    • rather than the master-servant polytheism of the Mediterranean and Mideast, including Hellenism.
    Last edited by Yaarel; Thursday, 30th May, 2019 at 03:06 PM.

  2. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaarel View Post
    @maceochaid

    The attitude of the Scandinavian archeologists emerges from fieldwork, as different archeologists assess the evidence at sites across Scandinavia and other Nordic countries.
    OK good. So can you provide the reference(s) for the peer-reviewed publish findings of these archaeologists? This doesn't seem like it should be so difficult.

    It seems like you are well versed in this research so I assume you get these references fairly quickly - thank you for the help!

    EDIT: sorry that came off very passive aggressive. I just wanted to clarify that it would be a great help if you provide the references requested. I like being up to date when I can, but I can't take the word of some anonymous person on the internet - sorry!
    Last edited by dave2008; Thursday, 30th May, 2019 at 03:09 PM.
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  3. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaarel View Post
    @maceochaid

    The attitude of the Scandinavian archeologists emerges from fieldwork, as different archeologists assess the evidence at sites across Scandinavia and other Nordic countries.

    The main reasons for the shift include the following.

    • The project to establish a ‘German race’ that began over a century ago, has failed.
    • Relatedly, the project to establish a Pan-German religion, has failed.

    • What is today Germany was ethnically diverse. Unrelated tribes adopt the language of neighbors.
    • Roman evidence requires caution, ‘Germania’ is a territory that includes Celtic tribes and other tribes.
    • Indeed the ‘Germanii’ tribe is probably Celtic.

    • The linguistic category ‘Proto-Germanic’ is probably a misnomer.
    • Rather than being the ‘recipient’ of this language, Scandinavia is probably its originator.
    • Proto-Germanic seems the Nordic linguistic environment that develops after East Europeans enter from the Baltics.
    • Germanic languages are essentially an out-of-Denmark radiation South, West, and East.

    • The Norse belief systems are less like the Mediterranean ones (Roman, Greek, Canaanite/Phoenician).
    • and more like shamanic neighboring ethnicities, (Sámi, Suomi).
    • The only evident Norse spiritual leader is a shaman, the vǫlva, always a woman.
    • Norse beliefs are shamanic.
    • Ways of relating to nature beings (trolls) in Scandinavian folkbelief, appear conservative and indigenous.
    • Aboriginal Norse beliefs appear primarily egalitarian animism
    • rather than the master-servant polytheism of the Mediterranean and Mideast, including Hellenism.
    That's....interesting....

    Meanwhile, I need a game supplement to help me with my campaign gods set in an ersatz Scandinavia! Deities & Demigods does the job. Did you see that Thor has 26 Str when he wears his Girdle of Strength! But stats only go up to 25! Thor is awesome! And that full page picture of him fighting Jorgma....Jurgmann....Jargm... the World Serpent? Epic!

    ...Sorry, Yaaral, I interrupted. You were saying something boring about archaeology...?
    Laugh Yaarel, jasper, Schmoe, Maxperson laughed with this post

  4. #104
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    I'm not a religious scholar, but I did take several religious studies classes in college. Enough to know that religion has always been fluid, and ever changing. Not just through time, but differed by region during the same time period. Look at how many current variations of Christianity or Islam there is right now. Every religion in history has been this way. So to try to find the 'one true way' a particular religion was in the past is a fool's errand. You can't really do it. Especially when trying to determine how people worshiped when the written record isn't very good. Christianity falls into this as well because the Bible is based on a different language that has been translated over and over again. Ever play the telephone game as a kid?

    Point being, it seems fairly odd to me to get worked up over how a game incorporated exotic religions into one of it's supplements. Mr. Ward didn't submit D&D as this thesis for religious studies in college did he? No? Well then, move on.
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  5. #105
    Quote Originally Posted by dave2008 View Post
    I thought the satanic panic was a little bit after the publishing of this book, but you could be correct.
    It peaked somewhat later, but I think it was already underway. See here. The fact that someone as daft as Patricia Pulling became the main voice of it as well as becoming a consultant for law enforcement(!) shows just how dippy things were. Of course, they're not much better in a lot of places.
    Last edited by Jay Verkuilen; Thursday, 30th May, 2019 at 06:15 PM.
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  6. #106
    Quote Originally Posted by maceochaid View Post
    Interestingly the Cleric was designed to be what would later become the Paladin. They were mostly the original Gish, and were invented to fight a Vampire character and were based on the Song of Roland and Peter Cushing's depiction of Van Helsing in B-Rated horror movies. So the Cleric is explicitly based on fantasy Christianity.
    Yeah, I agree. Things like the venerable restriction to using blunt weapons came from the Medieval canard that a priest shouldn't shed blood but by using a club that would be OK. This is on the Bayeux Tapestry as I recall. There actually is a historical St. Cuthbert.

    Gygax was a guy who was inspired by Taiwanese plastic dinosaurs with bizarre critters he bought in a junk shop! He cast a very wide net.

  7. #107
    Thanks for this bit of D&D history, Mr. Ward! Your post brought back childhood memories of reading that book for hours on end.
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  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaarel View Post
    It is only a good thing if the representation of other cultures is accurate.

    By the way, I own the book, the original one.

    I can say its presentation of Scandinavian animisms is ... inaccurate.

    Same goes for Native American animisms.

    Vedic texts are sacred texts to modern Hindus.



    Here is the rule of thumb.

    If it is too sensitive to talk about our own religions in our own countries, then for similar reasons, it is probably too sensitive to talk about other peoples religions in other peoples countries.

    So until D&D players become mature enough to talk about Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Atheism, and other traditions, with some sensitivity, we are probably not mature enough to talk about other reallife spiritual heritages either.
    Well, you're about 40 years too late so ... good luck with that. "Broad strokes" and all seems to work in comics and movies and that's right about the level where RPG's tie in.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Verkuilen View Post
    Gygax was a guy who was inspired by Taiwanese plastic dinosaurs with bizarre critters he bought in a junk shop! He cast a very wide net.
    Hey they didn't have to come from a junk shop - you could get those at K-Mart, which is where I got mine well before I started playing D&D!

  9. #109
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord_Blacksteel View Post
    Hey they didn't have to come from a junk shop - you could get those at K-Mart, which is where I got mine well before I started playing D&D!
    I remember them, too, from when I was a kid but for some reason I thought the story was he found them in a junk shop. Regardless, some of the "weird" critters like Rust Monsters or the Bulette were from that bag of dinosaurs.

  10. #110
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    Ironically, I would have kept the Cthulhu stuff in. Who did you contact for the "rights"? Sauk City/August Derleth? They didn't actually hold them as far as I'm aware, even though Arkham House acted as if they did for many years. HPL's copyrights were a mess.
    Lovecraft is now in the public domain, one reason so many games have appeared in the past few years.
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