Sacral Kingship

Another characteristic that separates Theodism from other retroheathen groups reconstructing heathen religion is that of sacral kingship.

Garman Lord defined sacral kingship as “the folk-religious principle whereby men are understood to be directly connected to the gods, from whom they are believed to be descended, through the appointment of a sacral king who is considered High Priest of his tribe.” Currently the reconstruction of the responsibilities of the sacral king as part of modern heathen religiosity is unique to Theodism and its tribal structure. These obligations are the responsibility of the lord of the thiad and all heads of the households of the thiad. The lord is the luck wielder of the tribe and is charged with establishing a realm of order in a world of hostility.

The lord of the tribe maintains his sacral function by establishing, maintaining, and defending the lands, thew, laws, and religious practices of the tribe. The sacred nature of these responsibilities is reflected in the dual nature of the holy in pre-Christian Germanic culture and in the fact that society and law were fundamentally religious in orientation and that the punishment of crimes reflected a breach in a sacral order and not a criminal act against an individual or the community. This correlation between the health, wholeness and luck of the tribe and the actions of the heads of the various strata of society, whether it is the head of a household or the head of the tribe itself, is fundamental to understanding the nature of sacral kingship.

When thew is maintained the luck and power of the sacral leader is good and strong and the health, wholeness and luck of the tribe is in turn strengthened. The tribe sees times of peace and plenty in the communities, victory in war, and good health for the folk. When the sacral leaders fail to perform their sacred obligations, or fail to live up to the standards demanded of them by their folk and the gods, the tribe suffers the negative consequences in turn.

Because it would be impossible to separate the role of the luck wielder and the obligations that surround the role of the heads of households and tribes from the pre-Christian heathen concepts of health, wealth, prosperity, luck, power, and wholeness this role is a critical element of the reconstruction of pre-Christian Germanic religiosities in Theodish Belief.