Initiation, retrospection

I came across some of my writings from around the time of my initiation with Freya in 2013. Looking back on that whole process, it occurred to me that it was all very organic.

Me, after a random public journey:

“Hmm, Freya wants me to come visit a lot?”

<I visit every day for two weeks straight. Freya shows me X, Y, and Z insights about myself and the universe as a whole>

“Cool! Now I have to thank Her! How shall I do that?”

<Series of conversations with her telling me to have a public celebration honoring myself and Her. Which I did; it was lovely.>

Me, five years later: If someone had tried to design that entire initiatory and revelatory experience for me and I had to follow along, or if I had to wait for a specific teacher that I clicked with and trusted enough to tell me how and what I should experience and when, well…. it would not have gone nearly so well. First off, I don’t do well with people telling me what I can or can’t do. I will do what I want, thank you very much. (Yes, my pride is a known character defect that hinders much as much as it helps.) Secondly, I get in my own way so often that if even if there had been an external, clearly laid out plan, likely I would have found a way to procrastinate or talk myself out of it. Who am I but some mere human? Smart, sure; sensitive, sure; but also kind of hapless, overly idealistic and often depressed. I’m just one of billions of such people walking the earth today. This way, there were no expectations because it was, quite literally, being revealed to me bit by bit. I was given exactly what I needed as I needed it and as I was able to handle it. Despite the challenges that came later, for that alone, I’m very grateful. The process was graceful and loving, though often strenuous and painful. The experience forever changed how I interact with the world around me.

Life is painful, and growth even more so. Still, I was carried then, and I have faith that I will be carried again when the time arises. Until then–

Hail and thanks to all of the powers that are greater than ourselves–those who know us more deeply than we ever can and who love us more powerfully than we can begin to imagine. Hail to my Lady, Freya!

A firestorm of Freyas….

Todays’ Facebook fun included a long thread on naming groups of deities, along the lines of “a murder of crows” or “a gaggle of geese”. My favorite creations:

  • A firestorm of Freyas
  • A disdain of Gerds
  • A suspension of Odins
  • A harvest of Freyrs (all my other ideas were not safe for work)
  • A cascade of Skadis (Andrea)
  • A competition of Ullrs
  • A whisper of Friggas (Mary)
  • A thunderstorm of Thors
  • An observation of Heimdals
  • A racket of Ratatosks (Becky)
  • A judgement of Tyrs
  • A revelation of volvas….

30 Days of Gerd, Day 8: The Skirnismal

(Yes, I’m skipping forward a bit.)

One of the workshops I love doing is an activity called Myth Embodiment. I have an entire section of the blog dedicated to it. Essentially, it involves a group of people “embodying” or re-enacting a myth, with all of the bits being portrayed–the deities, the scenery, the named objects. During the reenactment, we stop and each “character” gets a chance to give their pov of whatever event is taking place. It sparks some great discussions and helps really fill out less-well-known or less documented deities and myths. A few years ago, the Vanic Conspiracy did a myth embodiment for the Skirnismal, (“the Journey of Skirnir/Skirnir’s Story”). At the time, it helped me address some deep-seated issues I was having in working with Freyr, because at surface value this myth shows Freyr’s servant Skirnir forcing Gerd into marriage with Freyr using extremely creatively horrible threats. Our analysis is hosted on my blog here. My longer description and analysis of the myth from several different perspectives is available on Huginn’s Heathen Hof.

 

30 Days of Gerd, Day 2: Basics

Gerd (Gerðr) is a beautiful jotun maiden, daughter of the jotun Gymir. She was out minding her own business when Freyr spied Her from Hlidskjalf, Odin’s High Seat from which he can view all of the worlds. She was at her father’s hall, standing out in the garden. He saw her flashing white arms, and He fell violently in love. Skirnir woos Her for Freyr, and She comes back to marry Him. (This is the short version; the long version is found in the Skirnismal, or Skirnir’s Journey, which I will discuss ad nauseum later in this series.) Here is an illustration of Skirnir “wooing” Gerd in Her father’s Hall. Though it is not my favorite depiction of Gerd, I find it amusing as it attempted to compare the “small” Skirnir, of which race we know not, and Gerd, who is of Jotun kind. As Jackson Crawford explains in many of his videos on the subject, the jotnar were never meant to be understood as a completely different species of being; they were more than likely just seen as a tribe of outsiders, and not that much different from the Aesir or Vanir.

Skirnir and Gerd

Gerd: 30 Days of Devotion

It’s Spring. Can’t you tell? Freyr knows this. Freyr makes it so.  Freyr, the inexorable coming of Spring, it all ways that it can come.

In honor of Spring, Gerd, and myself, I’m doing a 30 Days of Gerd. This will be an unorthodox (?) 30 Days Devotional, in that I’m not following any specific pattern of questions. I’ve decided to just let it grow

(wait for it…)

organically. (Vegetation puns FTW!)

First up: A description.

Imagine a snow-covered glade in the mountains. The snow has melted a bit but is still mounded up here and there, with frozen patches over lakes and ice-filled river water just starting to flow at normal speed. Where the snow has melted, the ground is black and dark brown, covered with little bits of dried grass and dead leaves. The earth looks bleary and shaken and not quite awake; kind of how I feel at the moment, two days into Springtime. The land and I are of one accord, now, and so is Gerd. Though, having been through this process a millennia of times more than I ever will, She’s taking it with much more grace and dignity.

early spring forest

A frost jotun awaits her lover, the Summer King. But she does not do so passively. Jotun are anything but passive. She is Lady and Keeper of the Fields and Hall while he is away. In my mind’s eye these last few weeks I’ve seen her sweeping the garden, weeding out the plant-boxes, and making the earth ready. I’ve see Him hovering just beneath his lands, a force awakening and ready to erupt. Does Spring come quietly? Or in an explosion? Time will tell, I guess.