Reproduction of some old 'English Heathen Front' articles - which all 'National-Ecologists' will find interesting!
We stand proudly in the English national ecology tradition of Rolf Gardiner, Viscount Lymington and Jorian Jenks. We are inheritors of the great German ecologists: Riehl, Haeckel, Darré, Gruhl. Yet, we also recognise there are other traditions from which we may borrow to further our cause. These traditions may have been appropriated by the social ecologists of the Left but in the name of the English people, we are prepared to repatriate these for our own vital ends.
Bioregionalism is one such tradition. A product of the North American counterculture of the 1960s, the term bioregionalism was coined by Canadian Allen Van Newkirk in an article first published in the journal of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources in 1974. The concept was further popularised by Peter Berg and Raymond Dassmann of the Planet Drum Foundation, an organisation established in the mid-seventies to “pursue research and publish information on the relationship between human culture and the natural processes of the planetary biosphere”.
The Planet Drum Foundation may have been a hippie groupuscule but its work inspired Ernest Callenbach to write the first bioregional novel Ecotopia in 1975. Callenbach told the revolutionary tale of the secession of northern California, Oregon and Washington from the United States to form an independent north-west Pacific bioregion.
The best known American bioregionalist Kirkpatrick Sale – author of the Dwellers in the Land – defines a bioregion as: “a place defined by its life forms, its topography and its biota, rather than by human dictates; a region governed by nature, not legislature”. This mirrors the EHF's own monist perspective which argues that the Darwinian laws of nature are of necessity the laws of society.
Like the EHF, the bioregionalists see modern states and administrative divisions as artificial constructs. Modern industrial society alienates people from the land. Instead, living-in-place is advocated, a philosophy that means “following the necessities and pleasures of life as they are uniquely presented by a particular site, and evolving ways to ensure long-term occupancy of that site”. This demands a return to “an age-old way of existence disrupted … a few millennia ago by the rise of exploitative civilisation, and more generally during the past two centuries by the spread of industrial civilisation”.
The EHF too sees the rise of Judaeo-Christianity as exploitative and destructive of primordial harmony. Like Berg and Dassmann, we want to see the restoration of ecological citizenship for our people. We call this process reinhabitation: “the learning to live-in-place in an area that has been disrupted and injured through past exploitation. It involves becoming native to a place through becoming aware of the particular ecological relationships that operate within and around it. It means understanding activities and evolving social behaviour that will enrich the life of that place, restore its life-supporting systems, and establish an ecologically and socially sustainable pattern of existence within it. Simply stated it involves becoming fully alive in and with a place. It involves applying for membership in a biotic community and ceasing to be its exploiter”.
This is the land ethic of the EHF, one key aspect of our Odalist worldview. Accordingly, we see bioregionalism as a useful cultural tool, a weapon to be wielded against the forces of global monoculture.
The battle for an English bioregion is an integral part of our struggle. We demand reinhabitation – the right of the English folk to rediscover the joys of living-in-place. Our English bioregion will be a land freed from the shackles of Judaeo-Christianity, a bulwark against global capital. It will be a living testament to the unity of English blood and English soil.
Woden be with us!
The English Heathen Front sees the history of the English folk as “the unbroken life of our nation”. For our reading of the past, we draw on the work of the great Teutonist historians – John Kemble, EA Freeman, JR Green and William Stubbs – writing in England between the late 1840s and the 1870s.
Beginning with Kemble's “The Saxons in England” in 1849, these so-called British Germanists traced the origins of a free and noble English citizenry back to the tribal law and practices of our ancient Anglo-Saxon forebears. Freedom was product of the German forests, not of the Roman senate. They saw in our primordial English roots the sources of strength that made Britain the world's greatest imperial power.
At the same time, these historians denounced the “Norman yoke” imposed by 1066 not on grounds of blood but because it was a “usurpation of the soil”. It introduced the alien (ie Frankish) system of feudalism and was a “crusade of confiscation, plunder, rapine and devastation”.
Yet, according to EA Freeman, the impact of the Norman invasion was “neither to destroy nor to found but to continue”. In other words, the English blood community remained, enriched by the injection of Germanic Norman blood even if political oppression followed on the continental model.
Here surely lies a lesson for all of us today. Despite the impositions of multiculturalism, the historical burden of Judaeo-Christianity, the predations of global capital, our English blood remains, continues and will ultimately triumph.
The EHF believes we can gain great strength from learning about our tribal ancestors and their tribulations. For, with John Kemble, we assert that “the Englishman has inherited the noblest portion of his being from the Anglo-Saxon”. Let all those working for the revival of militant folk consciousness in England, turn to the work of these great historians for inspiration and ammunition in the struggle ahead.
Woden be with us!
The English Heathen Front salutes Rolf Gardiner (1902 – 1971) as father of the English Greens and hero of our National Ecology movement. Farmer and forester, Gardiner was an early champion of biodynamic (organic) farming and a founder member of the Soil Association.
His youthful links with Guild Socialism and the Social Credit movement gave way in the 1930s to a more mature engagement with National Socialism. Gardiner was the creator of the Springhead Ring, an attempt at agrarian renaissance based at his estate in Dorset which involved establishing a Rural University and the revival of folk dance and song and rural festivals.
The semi-militaristic life of service advocated by Gardiner led him in 1936 to membership of Lord Lymington's back-to-the-land group English Array and to Kinship in Husbandry. Both these organisations attributed social breakdown in England to the influence of “aliens … who bring corruption and disrespect for the ancient decencies”.
Gardiner was a powerful advocate of folk traditions. He believed “folk art is the matrix of all arts” and inveighed against cosmopolitanism, intellectuals and the modern cult of individualism. He actively supported agrarian work camps for the unemployed -- most notably that run by the national ecologist Order of Woodcraft Chivalry at Godshill in Hampshire in 1932.
Gardiner liked to describe himself as “a plain, practical working farmer, forester … an ameliorator of the land”. Nonetheless, his thinking was heavily influenced by the work of blut und boden ideologue Walther Darré whom Gardiner visited in Germany before the outbreak of World War Two. Gardiner also corresponded with Darré after 1945 hailing him as the inspiration for Britain's organic farming movement. Another key influence on Gardiner was Jorian Jenks, agricultural adviser to the British Union of Fascists.
In one of his last public addresses in Strasbourg in October 1971, Rolf Gardiner stated what the EHF now sees as one of its central propositions:
“In the post-modern age, society will have to discipline itself to more selective consumption, to reliance on bare essentials, to thrift. Squandering our resources and reckless consumption lead to ultimate impoverishment and all-pervading illness of soils, plants, beasts and humankind. We cannot afford them. We must adopt a wiser style of living altogether if we are to survive at all”.
The EHF too calls for a “wiser style of living” based on the values of National Ecology. This approach -- allied with a revival of militant folk consciousness in England -- offers us our last and greatest hope of national salvation. We salute Rolf Gardiner, father of the English Greens!
Woden be with us!
The English Heathen Front honours Rolf Gardiner, father of the English Greens, for his struggle against “the decadence of the over-civilisation … that afflicts our nation”. Gardiner characterised over-civilisation in two ways: as a capitalist\commercial conspiracy against the English folk (“pluto-democracy”) and as a severance of English blood from its indigenous soil (“discarnate culture”).
Thoughout his life, he fought tirelessly for a fledgling National Ecology based on the restoration of the ancient bond between blood and soil:
“I do not believe that the dream of a rural civilisation is a vain one. The earth is a heavenly being and we are its appointed husbandsmen. That conception must triumph over the idea of the machine, the world-factory. But where there is no vision the people will perish”.
Gardiner's vision was “to renew the roots of our culture” through the revival of “the religion of the soul through the soil”. This was the basis on which “the tribes of Yggdrasil should once more reign around the Baltic and the northern seas”. He deplored alien influence, especially “the barbarism which invades us … from America” which he described as “a hostile force beleaguering us on all sides”. Ultimately, to achieve his aims, he called for an “apolitical revolution” founded on a “statesmanship … akin to husbandry … as elemental as fire, earth, water”.
In Gardiner's vision, politics were to be subordinated to ecology. Why? Because to divorce oneself from the land is “to live in the upper storey of a house whose foundations have crumbled”. This meant that Gardiner regarded the soil as holy and considered agriculture a “sacramental” act. This mirrors the thinking of today's Odalists in the EHF and marks Gardiner out as one of our most important intellectual forebears.
Like Gardiner, we oppose the “deadening effects of industrialisation” and mourn man's resultant loss of “sensibility and reverence” for nature. We also share his mission to restore the vital balance between man and soil. Indeed, it was Gardiner himself who prophesied the birth of Odalism in England when he wrote, some sixty years ago:
“It is not just a question of assembling a new group (nor at all of forming a new political party) but rather of drawing together an already existing, though largely unawares, community of conscience, sympathy and purpose … We must strive to achieve a polyphony of effort; to practise a sort of social and spiritual counterpoint. All that one person can do is to call; but only several together can make the music that has to follow. It is the future of England that is our theme. And beyond it the theme of rural and regional reconstruction in Europe. But Europe will only listen to England if England offers a wisdom worthy of being hearkened to, and if there are men equipped with the experience, and with the power of language, for presenting that wisdom in terms of living speech and action”.
By “drawing together an already existing, though largely unawares, community of conscience, sympathy and purpose”, the mission of the English Heathen Front is to spearhead the revival of a militant folk consciousness in England.
In our work, we proudly acknowledge our debt to Rolf Gardiner, the father of the English Greens. We salute him as a hero -- his radical thinking a rallying point for our comrades throughout the Allgermanische Heidnische Front, for Odalists and National Ecologists everywhere.
Woden be with us!
(This article is based on a reading of Andrew Best, ed., “Water Springing from the Ground: An Anthology of the Writings of Rolf Gardiner”, Gradatim: Springhead 1972)