Our Troth

by The Ring of Troth
PO Box 212
Sheridan, IN 46069

Currently out of print.

Our Troth is a monumental work in the modern history of GermanicHeathenry. It is, without doubt, the finest book ever compiled on the moderntraditions of Ásatrú.

For those who haven't heard of it, Our Troth is a compilation ofsubmissions by various Ásatrúar and other Germanic Heathens fromaround the world. It is edited into a coherent whole by Kveldulfr Gundarsson(who did double duty in writing the parts which nobody else contributed to) andpublished by The Ring of Troth. The result is a tome of over 700 pages, whichcovers virtually everything the modern Heathen could wish to know.

The project originally began with Edred Thorsson's A Book of Troth,rights to which were given over to The Ring of Troth when Edred made his hastyand far too long delayed departure from the leadership of the organization. Theoriginal intent of Our Troth was to publish an updating of A Book ofTroth, intended as a guide for members of the Ring. Somewhere along theline, someone got a bit carried away. The book does betray some of itsheritage. There are parts which are specific to the Ring of Troth, such as apublication of the requirements of the Ring's Elder and Godman programs, andtheir by-laws. However, the vast majority of the book is Elder Lore, which isapplicable to anyone interested in the Germanic traditions.

The information is well arranged and much more complete than that offered inprevious books. Whereas publications of the "New Age Press" tend to downplayscholarship, OT devotes space, where appropriate, to go cite sources andotherwise uphold high standards of research. This is something I find quitewelcome. It includes historical lore, modern supposition and revelation, andpractical advice. There is a resource list and a large bibliography andglossary.

There are, of course, a few problems with the book, as there are with anything.The Ring also occasionally uses "The Troth" to refer to both itself as anorganization and the religion as a whole without making a distinction. Sincethis is a compilation that is intended to be inclusive there are occasionalbits which left me shaking my head, such as a description for setting up aHeathen ritual site which suggests a nine foot circle and refers to the fouralchemical elements (which are southern European and not part of theNorthern tradition) or Diana Paxson's argument for the worship of the Jotnar,excerpted from Mountain Thunder (much of the book is excerpted fromMT or other periodicals and small circulation books). On the other hand,this is a very complete book and my own argument (strongly against the worshipof the Jotnar) appears in the same chapter. This is limited to a few minorpoints--what do you want, with 700 pages and over 40 authors one is bound todisagree with something.

Overall I cannot but beg you to go out immediately and order this book. Thereis so much here that virtually anyone from a novice to an old-timeÁsatrúar will find something within. A huge "Hail!" is in orderfor Gundarsson for his editing and writing, and to Bill West and the otherBarnstokker folks for their work in physically putting the book together.