A chat with the Old Man

I was feeling blech and generally out of sorts spiritually. I had felt this way for several days. I decided to do something about it. It was time for a chat with Odin to find wisdom and inspiration.

I hadn’t bothered him for quite a while. So I figured he might be up for this little talk. I did all my seidr stuff to get myself into a trance. I journeyed up the World Tree to Asgard to meet with him. So I’m there in Asgard enjoying the energy and looking for Odin. He’s nowhere to be seen. So I just kinda hang out. I’m sending out my intention for the visit. Nothing. This went on for a while. Then suddenly I hear a loud voice proclaim “Meditate on my rune fool!”.  And I’m slapped back into ordinary consciousness.

Well. Sorry to bother you!  But I’m not one to ignore a direct order. So I meditated on Ansuz. I kept getting two words in my head. Communication and gods. Then as I was meditating I was thrown back to the first of the year. I was feeling out of touch spiritually then too. And the events of the last eight months where unfolded for me. Founding the Vitki/ Volva Forum. Starting to learn the Anglo Saxon futhorc. Getting a vitki student. More rune castings for others than I can count. Starting my blog. And most recently the messages that I am to follow the concurrent path of Druidry. Whew!  When I lay it all out it’s been quite a busy year spiritually speaking!  I should be more content with my progress.

Communication and gods. I’ve definitely had my world open up in regards to communication. And my new concurrent path opens me up to a whole new pantheon of gods. What more could I ask for?

But I still wasn’t sure. So I pulled out the runes to do a casting on the question  “What should I make of the events of the last year spiritually?”.  Here’s what I got.

I am experiencing life changes. Inspiration of the gods in my subconscious is bringing me to a gestation phase in my higher consciousness. Intellectual awareness of the Divine structure is keeping my emotions stable. A lack of creativity at this time would lead to sorrow and strife. My connection with the gods may confuse me.

And that’s a perfect picture of where I stand. Especially in regards to my new concurrent path. The runes never fail to put things into perspective. Much for me to do and meditate on!

So not much of a chat with Odin. But as always he put me on the path to wisdom and greater understanding of myself. I’m never disappointed in his guidance. He steers me to the right path every time. That’s why I turn to him.  Hail Odin!

Ergi warrior

An ergi warrior. Contradiction of terms? Not possible? I say it is.  

I’ve always known I was ergi. Gay. From my earliest memories of being the oddball in a rough and tumble familial and social setting I knew something was up. I was born and raised in a rural farm community of 650 people in 1965. I was never in the closet. Was out and gay from day one. It just never occurred to me to hide who I was. No one else around me did. Why should I?
I was always feminine.

My favorite fictional characters were always female. In my youth from Little Orphan Annie to Dorothy and Glinda (she did have the best costume after all!) in “The Wizard of Oz” I closely modeled myself after the heroine. Even though my favorite TV show was “Starsky and Hutch” it wasn’t because I wanted to be them. I just thought Starsky was dreamy. So all the signs were there early on.

But I was also always a warrior. Fighting back against those who picked on me. Which happened often. Slammed into lockers. Books hit out of my hands. Fighting back with my father. He figured he could bully the sissy out of me. Of course not so. I figured out that the only way to survive and flourish in this atmosphere was to stand up for myself.

When I was 13 I was expelled from the Lutheran church in my hometown. They said I was gay and had no right being there. This was a crushing blow for me. I was very active in the church. I taught Sunday School. I sang solos at special services. I played the organ. The church was a well integrated part of my life. But if God was going to turn His back on me I would fight back. I turned to alternative religions to fill the spiritual void.

I spent years searching for a spiritual home. I devoured self help books and New Age philosophies. I was Wiccan for a while. None of it seemed to work for me. It was years of being adrift. I had no inkling where to turn.

I had decided to find out what my ancestors did spiritually before the tide of Christianity took over them. As my ancestors as far back as we could trace them (the 1500s) were German I knew that there was going to be my answer. And that meant the old olds of the North. This lead me to a fascination with the gods of that time and place. I read everything I could about Odin and Thor and the like. I was entranced. No one could have told me back when I was 13 that I would find such a rich and diverse history of beliefs. I felt at home.

Ultimately my adulthood searching lead me to my exposure to Asatru. Here was a religion celebrating all the gods I had come to know. It had ritual and clergy. Soon enough I had joined an international Asatru group and called myself an Asatruar.
I was drawn to the Esoteric side of Asatru. I began my Runic studies in my mid20s. But soon I felt unbalanced. There was so much talk of the warrior side of life in Asatru. The Esoteric offered a way for me to combat all this overly overt testosterone.  I learned about Odin and his studying seidr with Freyja. Not a very manly practice. Most seidr workers were women after all. And then of course reading in the Edda about Loki using the term ergi to hurl as an insult at Odin. I looked ergi up. Feminine male. Me. But Odin was nonplussed by the insult. After all he was a warrior god. If he also had an ergi side of his complex personality so be it. Odin knew that to continue his never ending search for wisdom it would be necessary to explore that part of his psyche. He was an ergi warrior. I figured so was I.

There are times today more than 25 years later I’ll be in some discussion in a Facebook group where someone will throw the term ergi at me. And I’m fine with it. I know I’m a warrior as well.

My husband of 30 years and I have been ergi warriors together. Back in 1993 we marched on Washington DC for the rights of same sex marriages. In 2000 we adopted our daughter in suburban Chicago. Many was the time of a parent teacher conference I had to don my warrior garb. It’s been a life of struggle and fights. But I’ve held my own over the years.

Eight years ago I was diagnosed with MS. This began a new round of battles. The daily fight against my body decaying. Losing and then gaining back functionality. The onslaught of medication and physical therapy. I have fought and won many battles both large and small. It’s a battle I may ultimately succumb to. But fight I will.

I have been a Vitki for 25 years. Over a year ago I achieved my goal of being ordained as a Gothi. My life is spiritually full. Nothing in my life is untouched by the gods. Ergi or not I have been chosen for this path.

What does this mean for me today? How do I live a life as an ergi warrior? I explore both sides of myself. The masculine runes and the feminine seidr. The fighter and the healer. I know that may be a gross oversimplification but it’s how I view it. It takes work on both sides to keep me balanced. I admit I struggle sometimes with this balance. But I at least keep struggling.

So these days I’m a warrior in my daily battle with MS. And naturally my ergi flag is always flying. I’m not afraid to be ergi. Or a warrior. I am happily both. So let Loki hurl insults. It’s simply who I am.  I follow the example of Odin. I’m an ergi warrior!

 

Nine realms

The concept of nine realms is one of the cornerstones of Nordic thought. These realms are laid out in the Lore in many places. But to what end?  What is the purpose of the nine realms to the vitki?

First of course is to have a destination for seidr journeying. Whether it’s Hel for communication with the dead or Asgard for acquiring greater wisdom the realms are there to explore. It’s through these explorations that knowledge and understanding are collected for the use of the vitki. This information is best used to describe spiritually what occurs in ordinary consciousness. It is a framework to explain everyday life.

But the nine realms can be used to explain even more. They can be used as a way to interpret the psychological state of mankind. Here’s a quick lesson from Thorsson on how.

Midgard is the center realm. It governs the Self. The higher consciousness is explained in Asgard. Lljossalfheim is the intellect. Svartalfheim is the emotions. Hel is the subconscious. Vannaheim stands for motion.  Jotunheim is motion. Neifelheim is contractive energy. Musspelheim is expansive energy. All together they form a snapshot of the individual. That can be used in rune casting.

This rune layout is a combination of things I have learned along the way in Runic studies. It’s simple in the layout but a little tougher in the interpretation.

Nine runes are pulled. The first is placed in the center at Midgard. The second is placed above this in Asgard. Directly below that is the third rune for Lljossalfheim. Directly beneath Midgard is Svartalfheim for the fourth rune. Fifth comes Hel directly beneath that.

The the sixth is in the upper left hand corner for Vannaheim. The seventh is the lower left hand corner for Musspelheim. Number eight is the upper right hand corner for Neifelheim. And finally the ninth is placed in the lower right hand corner for Jutonheim.

Now comes the fun right brain task of interpretation. Using the psychological aspects given you can place a person’s immediate and short term beliefs on a given issue. Have fun coming up with pairs in all this. Asgard and Hel influencing each other for example. The variations are only limited by the interpreter skills and intuition.

So hopefully this has given you are new way to look at rune casting. Let your intuition soar with the possibilities hinted at here. Mostly explore!

 

Wheels of might exercise

Dovetailing the last post I thought I’d share an exercise from Runic John using the Wheels of might system. Here goes.

Imagine you’re pulling energy up from the earth into your brown foot wheel. It travels through all the Wheels until it is in your head wheel. Then it turns into a rainbow colored energy that sprays out of your head wheel covering your body with light. It falls back down to your foot wheel only to get sucked up again and make the journey through the wheels all over. This fountain of energy continues feeding itself and repeating. You are surrounded by a rainbow colored energy field. Continue this exercise as long as your focus will allow.

Great. But what does it do exactly?  I can only report from personal experience. What it has done for me the last several days I’ve been doing it is that it definitely gives me a boost of energy. Energy I need to continue my day with purpose. Continue with the goals at hand. Very useful tool for someone with MS.

It’s another tool I can add to my toolbox. Every day it seems I find something of use and value to add. Hopefully you do the same!

Hweols of maegen

Wheels of might. The Nordic chakra system. I’ve been dying to know if such a thing existed. Apparently Runic John was inspired with such a system. Here’s a brief run down of what I’ve learned.

Having some exposure to the chakra system of 7 wheels I was surprised this Nordic system only had five. But that’s all he wrote.

The first hweol is the foot wheel. It is located just below your feet. It’s color is brown.   It oversees your physical body and vitality. The rune is uruz.

The hype hweol is at your groin or hips. The color is blue-green. It governs creativity and sexuality.  The rune is othala.

The Midgard hweol is at your navel. The color is a swirling rainbow. It governs the conscious mind and ego. Isa is the runic affiliation.

Next is the heorte hweol located at the center of you chest. The color is red. It looks after emotions. Ehwaz is the Rune.

Last is the hafela hweol. It is located just above your head. It’s color  is white. It is in control of the growth of consciousness.   The rune is Ansuz.

There’s more of course but I just wanted to give a brief introduction to this school of thought. I admit I was a bit skeptical of this. But I figured I’d give it a try. I’ve worked with it for several days. It’s growing on me. The Book of Seidr gives exercises to work on. I admit they’re pretty powerful. But don’t take my word for it. Use this system to create your own meditations and exercises. That’s what being a vitki is all about — creating!