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On Monday, three Virginia men were charged with plotting to attack and bomb black churches and Jewish synagogues, reportedly with the goal of triggering a “race war” in the United States. Suspects Ronald Chaney and Robert Doyle, who FBI officials say are also plotting to kill a local jewelry dealer and rob an armored car, were outspoken white supremacists, bound by a common desire enact violence against Jews and African Americans.

But documents show that the two men, and possibly accomplice Charles Halderman, also share something else: A common, peculiar faith.

“Doyle and Chaney, and others known and unknown to the FBI, ascribe to a white supremacy extremist version of the Asatru faith,” read the FBI’s report.

Continue reading:  The New Religion Of Choice For White Supremacists

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8 thoughts on “The New Religion Of Choice For White Supremacists

  1. Is there anywhere to be found a religion that is reasonable? I have been accused of treating all religions with a broad brush but I see no evidence of my being wrong or too simplistic

    • In regards to large institutionalized religions, I agree that none of them are reasonable. That might be painting with a broad brush, but it’s also quite accurate – IMO.

      Here’s a word of caution, however: For simplicity’s sake, we in the secular community have a regrettable tendency to demonize all spiritual beliefs and to directly equate such personal spirituality with institutional religion. This, in my view, is a rather costly mistake. It creates the perception that we are intolerant and hostile – ironically, the same criticisms we cast onto religious folks.

      I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know a few Buddhists and Native Americans who were very religious… and very reasonable people. I liked them. They were nice and peaceful. It would be insulting to compare them with fundamentalist Christians and Muslims whom I consider insane.

      • In military parlance, your reference to “Buddhist monks in Burma issuing death threats to activists” is known as a feint – a tactical maneuver designed to draw an opponent’s attention away from one’s true objective or area of vulnerability.

        From my perspective, we are not opponents. So, let’s get back to your original comment.

        If the goal of secularism is to facilitate a societal shift away from religious mythology towards the pursuit of knowledge and reason, then the methods it uses must be evaluated for effectiveness and – when necessary – scrutinized if it leads to counterproductive results. In this regard, secularists cannot afford to be above reproach.

        Since psychology and sociology are vital to the aims of secularism, we must consider the perceptions and reactions to our efforts. For example: I believe that Christianity and Islam are by far the worst of the major religions, and I envision a much better world without them. However, I understand that generally condemning every Christian and Muslim is unfair because it’s too simplistic. People, regardless of their spiritual beliefs, have good intentions. To castigate the lot of them purely on the basis of those beliefs will trigger anger in them as well as disapproval from outsiders. Instead of generating skepticism of religion, such a philosophical strategy creates public sympathy for it.

        As I have stated many times before, we need to focus on individual and institutional behavior… not what people choose to spiritually believe. The white supremacists detailed in this article are acting out not because of their newly found acceptance of Norse mythology, but because they have allowed themselves to be consumed with hate.

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