Rodnoverie: A Quick History of Russian Pagan Revival

Kaarina Aitamurto, a Finnish scholar who has studied the Russian Pagan revival extensively, has written a short history of the Rodnoverie movement(s) and their founders and exponents for the World Religions and Spirituality website. (Think of it as an online scholarly encyclopedia.)

In the 2000s, the Rodnoverie movement grew rapidly due to the Internet. In Russia, the Rodnoverie was among the first religions to seize the opportunities of the online space. Small communities created sites and displayed photographs of their festivals online. The availability of footage of rituals also created some uniformity in the ideas of what Rodnoverie festivals should be like. Individuals in remote parts of the country could participate in online discussions and seek likeminded people in their areas. In these discussions, many revealed that they had thought that they were the only ones adhering to the pre-Christian faith and expressed their enthusiasm to find these online and offline communities.

Rodnoverie was the subject of her PhD research, and she lists her publications on her University of Helsinki website.

4 thoughts on “Rodnoverie: A Quick History of Russian Pagan Revival

  1. kalinysta

    Thanks for the info and the links. Unfortunately, almost all of the Slavic neopagan groups are heavily tied into nationalism.

      1. kalinysta

        Like Nighlark, I’m a second generation American with my background being Lithuanian, Polish, Byelorussian and Ukrainian. The concept of “narod” is not just cultural, it is also very xenophobic. It’s tribalism at its worst. Nighthawk is correct about the brutal antisemitism and, for that matter, “the anti-anybody else except us” attitude that I spent my whole life fighting my family against, who took those ideas as self-evident and “normal”. While I “cherry pick” some aspects of the mythology mostly relating to house spirits etc., and while, when I was younger, my family actually practiced some of the old rites, I am very careful to stay away from and actively reject the tribalistic attitudes that still exist.

  2. Nightlark

    Thanks for posting this. Like the other commentor, all of the Slavic paganism (in English anyway) I find is brutally anti semetic, which is really sad. I’m 3rd gen American, and my whole DNA line is Slavic but I’ve spent more time studying British folklore because of the pervasive hatred corrupting stories from my homeland.

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