Report of Slavonic Native Religion community «The Great Fire, Bologne, Italy 2010

The Slavonic Native Religion community«The Great Fire as one of the examples of revival the traditional culture and it`s main values»

The idea of revival the native Slavonic religion appeared in Ukraine in the beginning of 20-th century. During the long period, when Ukraine was a part of the Soviet Union, the revival of the traditional Slavonic religion was very difficult. But still, there were people, who understood all the importance ofancient religion. Due to their efforts, there was a beginning of revival the traditional religion .The appearment of the Slavonic pagan community The Great Fire is the example of the native religion revival. Many people in Ukraine realized that, something should be done for the native religion, that it should be revived, andafter the Soviet Union ceased to exist ,the first pagan Slavonic communities appeared and then were later registrated asa religious organizations. Our community has a long history, because it is theoldest one in Ukraine. The main idea of it was to bring up the young people in the national tradition. In the 1990 we organized a “school” of the warrior art. We informed about it many people with the help ofthe advertisements and many people came to us. Besides one of the founders of community gave an interwiew to a one famous Ukrainian nevspaper, that gave this information to many other newspapers and he started getting many letters from people who maintaind our ideas. Later some of that people became a members of our community. There were only four people who created the Great Fire. At the end of 1990 there were already 50 people who joined us, and after a year had passed the number of members was 200.It was difficult to registrate the community, we made this only after Ukraine became an independent state. Howewer, the communists didn`t want to registrate us but they did, because they had no legal right not to do this. In a private talk they told, that they didn`t want to registrate pagans. In 1992 the first community in Zhitomyr was registrated and after that it became much easier to registrate all the ohter communities. Now we have 10 communities in Ukraine, the biggest in Zhytomyr, Kiev and Rivne.

We are often being asked what were our first efforts in creating the native religion community and how did we get the information about the main ideas of Slavonic religion, rituals, traditions and how do we understand the role of this religion today.

It was really an important question for us how to come to the real revival of native Slavonic religion. What were the main ideas and values of this religion, and the main problem-how is it possible to keep to this traditional outlook today in the modern world. To find the answer to these important questions, first of all, it was necessary to find out-what this ancient religion was like. The founders of the community didn’t have an ideato create a neo-pagan organization, but to know more about the ancient Slavonic religion, and to found a community based on a main ideas and values of it. It was quite difficult, because there isno much information about ancient Slavonic religion. It disappeared in the 10− th century after the christianisation, and it is difficult to find any reliable historical books that describe it in details. So, to revive it, it was necessary to make a long and complicated historical research, and due toit some facts about the main, centralvalues of Slavonic ancient culture, philosophy and religion were discovered, and the community the great fire was created, based on it.Some important facts about the history and cultural heritage of the Slavonic it became possible to understand what was the ancient religion like. The peoples who lived in ancient Europa in it `s eastern part were called the Slavonic. The cultural and the spiritual identity lead them to the creation the mighty civilization. Five thousand years ago on the Slavonic territories there was adeveloped culture ,called later by the archeologists the Tripolian culture. I t was a society, where the level of life was higher, than anywhere else in Europe.

The native Slavonic religion based on a belief in ancient Gods. According to the Slavonic mythology, the first mighty God was Svarog, the God of Fire.

He was one of the most worshiped Gods. His name can be translated as the Mighty Fire.

The Slavonic always remembered him before the lightening the Fire, that also was greatly worshiped as sacred. It has a great magical power, and our ancestors knew about it. That is why the worshiping of Fire was one of the most important values of ancient Slavonic culture.

It was also very important before lighting the Fire to honour the Ancestors , as in the ancient times it was done. The souls of our great ancestors are immortal and remember about us, so they can help us. One more basic idea of the ancient religion was the importance of a warrior power and abilities. According to the history, the Slavonic were very good warriors. The attention to a warrior power is an integral part of the ancientway of looking at the world not only for Slavonic but also for the other European peoples. Taking into the consideration this fact, we remember about the importance ofbeing ready to be a warriorand especially worship our great ancestors who were heroes and struggled for the freedom of our native land. The interest and attention to the history is also important for the understanding the importance of the native religion for the ancient Slavonic. Speaking about the great role of warrior power and ability to protect the native land of the conquerors we often remember this episodes from the Slavonic history.

When speaking about the Slavonic native religion we are also often being asked-are there many people who are interested in the revival of the native tradition and are there families that bring up their children in an ancient tradition?

It is a very important question. We think that the family tradition will help our tradition to became stronger and get a great power of our ancestors. The members of our community take children to the celebrations and they get a great pleasure. According to our tradition a person should bring up many children, because they will make their soul immortal after the death of the body. When a child is brought up in an old tradition, it is much easier to come to understanding of the importance of revival the native religion in future, unlike people who had to learn about ethnic religion themselves without any help of the family. In our community there are more and more people who pay much attention to the bringing up children in an ancient tradition.