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Uralic Paganism


Obviously varied considering that Uralic culture encompasses several different cultures throughout Europe and Asian, mostly Europe.

Let me get started.
Within the Polytheism, there are of course several gods.
The male, sky god Ukko. One of the most notable and prominent figures in Finnish Paganism. Often compared to Odin. As Ukko is basically to Finnish Lore as Odin is to Norse Lore. Also somewhat associated with Thor, due to the lighting and thunder aspects of his domain. Three different gods, but they're at least similar.

Ukko had a wife, the Finnish goddess of fertility, Rauni.
If one gets a special spiritual feeling out of the gray clouds and thunderstorms, and feels a calling to go out in them and pay respects to nature and stand in the rain and thunder, it might not be a bad idea to pray a prayer of respect to Ukko. Even more so if you're just excastic for the rain because you need it for your crops. Give thanks to Ukko.

And if one is having fertility problems, it would not be a bad idea to pray to Rauni. Or things of sexuality you give thanks for in general.

The domain of forests, hunting and nature in general, is a female, the goddess Mielikka.
So if one is about in the forests admiring their beauty, and respecting the spirits of a forest, it might not be a bad idea to pay respects to Mielikka.

Finnish lore has more than one god of sky and weather, there is also Ilmarinen.

Iku Turso. A god of war. Is considered a Sea Creature of the Water Element. Can be seen as octopus-like. If you want a comparison to fiction tale he is a lot like Cthulhu. A very destructive, god of destruction aquatic like creature than can be compared to an octopus or squid.

Even more related to crop and agriculture than Ukko, there is Pekko.
Keep that in mind about the crops thing as well.

I'm not going to go into too much related to gods and Uralic polytheism at the moment, though there is of course more. Because I want to wrap this time consuming post up, and because I can go into it later and overtime in short bits, instead of posting the painfully large.

I'll now go into some of the Animistic elements of the Polytheist Paganism.

Like Japan, the word "god" can be used to describe an array of spirits. Japan in Shinto calls many things like ancestors "kami", while there will always be "overkami". In Finno-Urgic Folklore, these minor deities and spirits are often called "Hiisi", and they are, like Northern and more "animistic" polytheism goes, tend to be interpreted on the more tutelary side(a concept of gods that compares them to like people, or with a sense of morality or good matured duty, to serve humans and not just be served, "human or more moral and dutiful than human" can be a good way to describe this nature), can be contrasted to more harder and less animistic forms of polytheism interpretation, such as the Southern, fertile crescent deities such as Sumerian/Babylonian and to some extent, Greco-Roman deities.

One could say that the deities of northern forests are in line with the personality of thriving natured and good hearted, while the dieties from desert areas such as the fertile cresent, reflect the harsh aridity of the desert, and demand servitude. Finnish dieties reflect the personality of the landscape of these northern forests.

Those these are obviously not absolutes, Enki can be seen as a great aid to humanity and cared to save humanity. But as a general rule in more Animistic and Northern faiths dieties tend to be looked at in a more tutelary fashion.

Again, Hiisi are pretty much kind spirits. And reflect the holiness of nature. Hiisi are meant to denote holy land and holy nature. You can be somewhat reminded of the Kodama in Japan's Shinto inspired animated movie, Princess Mononoke.

It can also be said that a place filled with such spirits is more of a holy place, and that places filled with such creatures are important spiritual bloodstreams of the planet. Further shown by the fact that "Hiisi" also means "holy place". From a Shinto standpoint, they are basically the opposite of spiritual impurity creatures.

For the most part, Hiisi indeed implies holy creature. Though some accounts as time went on, described them in ways not entirely positive. This can be compared to Japan's "Youkai", "Yousei" and "Bakemono" concept. Where fox spirits could be seen as a benevolent or good creature under the care of the god Inari, but also tales of them, they can be seen as mischievous or even impure or evil.

The tradition however points to them having a more pure and holy nature that show the holiness of nature and important nature areas.

Next I'll go into more of the variation in Uralic culture, such as the Sami, the meaning in my name, Ukonkivi, and more of the gods and Animistic and Shamanistic things, of course.

There is much to talk about indeed!
Until next time!


Active Member

You seem to connect the Finnish Paganism with the Japanese version. Are you implying they may have had a common source at some time in the past? Would the Ural Altaic region be a possible common source for both mythologies?

BTW, are there any other Finnish saints besides Saint Urho? Is he still celebrated on March 16th? ;)


Unrepentant goofer duster
Hungarian "shamanic" mythology has a figure called the Turul which I believe is unique.

I'm sure there are many other differences.


RF's pet cat
This is an interesting topic, since I am half Hungarian. I've been wanting to know more about what they believed. Where could I find these informations? Any specific sources for Hungarian Paganism?


Unrepentant goofer duster
Wow. They are really hard to find. I assume there is information in Magyarul, if you speak any.

I found this out while I lived there from people who were involved. There is supposedly a large community involved in the practice, which involves a shamanic focus. Also many beliefs about the Turul "returning" and also being the literal founder of the original Magyar kingship. I have some rare old historical/anthropo/archeological publications largely involving scholar Mihaly Hoppal, but as far as something you can just get off Amazon you might need to do some digging. The name they used for the "shaman" figure is taltos, which might give you some more info.

Actually there is a really great book called "Shamans: Siberian Spirituality and the Western Imagination" by Ronald Hutton. I would recommend to anyone who wants to clear view of what "shamanism" actually is/was in Siberia and how various generations of scholars, back to the earliest writers about far northern tribal peoples, contributed to general misapprehension and led ultimately to appropriation of the term by the Michael Harners of the world.
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RF's pet cat
Ah, well I do speak/read some but it's quite basic. I probably wouldn't understand half of it, which is a shame really. :/

Well still, it is great to know a little bit about it. I'm glad you even had this little bit of info. Thanks!