An intrinsic part if the Appalachian identity is the formation and expansion of ones ‘clan’ or, as I will word it, tribe. In Appalachia, at least with the mountain folk that live in my area, people tend to stray from the large and bustling. This fairs true for the social groups as well. Most Appalachians, in the Holston Valley area especially, have a close knit connection with their family and friends, close enough to call even their friends family. This is a prime example of creating a tribe. Not just a group of family members, but also the extended family and friends. This is fuel for Heathenry in Appalachia, and I wanted to talk a bit on that here.
Now, I wanted to make something clear, I am not a big fan of the Inangard and Utgard concept in the way it is commonly portrayed, and I am not going to talk about it more in this post. I may do a separate one on it, but I digress.
Tribalism, as I mean it here, is the belief that the natural form of societal groups is the ‘tribe’, or the family and the friends of an individual, and the sociopolitical aspects of the tribe. This is more of a modern take on an ancient concept, and this is because we no longer live in villages miles away from our nearest neighbors in the next village (Sadly). Modern Tribalism is more so conjoined with the concept of living a simpler life and a life of self-reliance.
If we look towards the modern, codified version of Heathen values, the Nine Noble Virtues, the Appalachian tribe embodies them to a tee! Here we see, in the Appalachian tribe, a sense of Hospitality, Honor (In the sense of our word is our word and we keep our reputation clean), Industriousness (We do what we must to continue our lives), Perseverance, and so on and so on.
So, in conclusion, the current Appalachian social group system is a prime fit and candidate for Tribalism in a Heathen context. The people are hospitable and truthful and they sure do love a good potluck with the folk.
It wasn’t much, but I hope you all enjoyed what I wrote! I’ll be talking about Heathenry and Anarchism eventually, as well as Heathenry and environmental protection, and what we are obligated to do. Farvel!