Odin musings

So, I started out putting together my handout on the runes, and ended up listening to an hour-long recent interview with Freya Aswynn on a British talk radio podcast. (It turns out she is still really on the ball, though not as actively involved in Heathen things as she had been for, oh, the last 30 years. Also, Freya Aswynn = the first modern Heathen devotional polytheist, eh?) All of which I only did because I was waiting for the WoW client to install on my Windows laptop, but hey–Odin moves in mysterious ways. Such is life of a Heathen on teh Interwebs.

I’ve been wandering around more in Odin territory the last couple of years–running around doing interfaith work, devotional/initiatory stuff, hanging with a ton of Odinswomen, blogging; and more recently doing the #90DaysOfOdin project. Now I’m organizing/teaching Heathen classes (the next of which will be about the Germanic magic) and just generally getting more in touch with the runes. He’s also just been hovering, because He hovers. (Much more subtly that Freyr ever did, btw.)

And with the changing of the seasons, He’s become much more tangible in a way I hadn’t really expected. Freyr has gone into the Mound, but this is the first year I’ve been connected enough with Him on a personal level to notice that change. Odin has gone nowhere, and in fact has upped His presence. I don’t want to wedge the two of Them into some kind of Norse “Oak King/Holly King “or “summer vs winter god” dichotomy–my experience is that their energies don’t balance out very well in that way–but that’s kind of how Their influence seems to be playing out in my life at the moment. (Also there’s Thor, which is a new element. But that will be another post, I imagine.) At the moment I’m just trying to record my observations and experiences of Them, not analyze or predict them.  Maybe it’ll all make more sense once a year’s gone by and I have more things to compare it to. *shrug*

Anyway, back to Odin. Because I know He’s not going away, and because I know I’ve been pouting about working with Him (though much more passive-aooressively than I had with Freyr), I’ve started consciously trying to get myself into the “Odin mood”. To buy into what I’ve always seen as his “hype” and willingly start drinking the navy-blue Kool-Aid. Since experience has taught me to be automatically wary of anyone who’s Super Popular and Shiny, I’m really trying to repress that impulse when it comes to Him. So, I’ve slowly been adding Odin stuff to my day–reading poetry, articles, personal descriptions of Him, looking at artwork, etc., which is how I ended up listening to a full our of a Freya Aswynn interview, when I never sit still long enough to watch or listen to anything on the internet that’s longer than 3 minutes.

Bu the instruction I’m getting from Him is odd, or so it feels. He’s saying, Put it down. Let go of the chuckles and the whizzbang and the smiles. Put down the mic, and turn off the recorder. Sit, and just be.

His “just be” is very different from Freyr’s “just be”. His “just be” is “cut out the bullshit and quit hiding, dodging, or spit-shining attempts to interact with people as you actually are”. Freyr’s “just be” is, well, just be. Just be still and be in your physical body, and through it sense your connection to your land and the world you live in. Odd that they say the same thing, but meant it in such different ways. Odd that I have a hard time doing either thing. Scared shitless that both seem to be opposite of lessons I’ve learned with Freya. Scared shitless that I’ll lose my connection  with Freya when I learn new lessons with Them.

But that’s the point, right? She kicked me out of the nest and set me on this path for a reason. The only way out is through.

And today it snowed. Winter isn’t coming; Winter is already here.

14 thoughts on “Odin musings

  1. I listened to the interview for kicks (I’ve met Freya irl, used to be in her rune course and ran into her a couple of times at Troth events) and noticed she was a lot more…um, diplomatic on the the topic of other wives of Odin than is usually her habit. Glad to hear you’re drinking the kool aid, though; it’s spiked, of course. 😀

    • Yeah, I noticed that “diplomacy”; it seemed a bit out of character. 😉 But Odin as a ton of wives, so… I kinda wish I had actually had some contact with her. But I did/do have Diana Paxson, so it’s not like I don’t have “elderly statesmen Odinswomen influence in my life. Plus you all, whom hopefull I’ll meet irl at some point. 😉

  2. The interview almost made me wonder if she’d had a change of heart on the subject, but then I found this, from only a couple of years ago, expressing a much more characteristic opinion of the rest of us: http://heathenharvest.org/2013/02/10/pledged-to-odinn-an-interview-with-freya-aswynn/

    Maybe she did open a current, or a door, but once you’ve done that, you don’t really have control of who walks through it–especially when it’s Odin, and not you, who holds the key to it. After almost 15 years of marriage to Him myself (yeah, I’m verging on elder myself at this point, but not *elderly,* kaythanks :D), though, I can kind of see where she’s coming from. There is some merit in her statement from the interview that the proof of a person’s involvement with the gods can be seen in their life. Where I disagree with her is that it isn’t for any of US to say who is “for real” and who isn’t; Odin can take care of that all on His own. 🙂

    • Yep, i think that is definitely something we can all agree on. Hey, since you’ve interacted with her irl–what is your take on her? Is she a gifted and a devoted medium/wife/priestess of Odin, or just an egomanic?

      • Yes? I think there’s some of both of those things there. But then, in Odin’s domain, very few things are an either/or, as He is the Lord of Paradox. I was actually pretty taken aback by her reaction to me (although, again, I both understand and sympathize with it a lot more now that I did back then); when I first shared my experiences with Odin with her in email correspondence (which I did because I was one of her rune students at the time–I am one of the two “slappers” referred to in the above article, I suppose, Galina being the other one)–she seemed receptive to the idea, or at least to be withholding judgment. When I met her in person at the course’s rune retreat, she was friendly enough; I showed her my wedding band and my (at the time) brand new valknut tattoo and we talked about Odin for a bit. Later on, though, she viciously attacked both me and Galina K. on an email list (telling us to come back to her after 10 years of supposedly being married to Him–an invitation I declined), and then when I went to Trothmoot one of her friends (not Diana–Diana is totally cool) accosted me (in private) to let me know that, although *she* knew I was the real deal, she would not ever acknowledge me publicly as Odin’s wife–meaning, I would be ignored if He showed up during seidhr– because of loyalty to Freya. At the time (since this was a very influential person in the heathen community) I was devastated. Now, I sort of get it; Freya has invested a LOT of her identity in being “the only one,” so of course her friends want to protect that. (This is one of the reasons I left the Troth, btw.) Certainly, she is gifted . She’s also sort of crazy (her friends sometimes admit that “she’s a nut, but she’s our nut”)–but then, I can’t completely blame her for that, because Odin. Functional insanity is kind of His thing. ❤

    • Yeah. I imagine that must have been devastating, back in the day. But what I’ve seen of godspousery done poorly tends to turn it into a bit of a Mexican novella (oi drama!)

      Honestly, I hadn’t heard of any modern godspouses at all until about ten years ago, when a woman in our local community went through a series of events to become a wife of Mannanan Mac Lir, and only in the last three-four years has it even become a common (though extremely controversial) term in the Bay Area. But I could never imagine setting myself up as The One True Wife of any god, much less Odin. That’s just a no-win situation for everyone involved. Though I could see how it may have felt to her at that point that she was the only real one. /shrug

  3. Thank you for posting the link to Freya Aswynns interview. I always love listening to her & brings me back to when her book came with a cd of her singing the Runes, sweet memories! 🙂

  4. For me, Freya Aswynn is one of those “admire the positive/repudiate the negative” elders. I am appalled by her protest against a black singer who performed the role of Wotan in a production of Das Rheingold. That’s something I can’t get past, and I prefer not to support her writings.

  5. For what it’s worth, I also have a thing going on where Odin is much more noticeable in winter and Frey in summer. I’m an Odinswoman (but as a daughter rather than a wife), so Odin can show up at any time, but October through January is his favorite time. I don’t know if it’s because he first came to me as Santa Claus when I was a kid, or because I live in Texas and he doesn’t like hot weather, or what, but that’s how it works with me.

    Another contrast between Odin and Frey, which may be related to your “just be” thing, is that Odin is very mental while Frey is very physical. Again, this is just my experience, but Odin is all about being intellectual and meditation and dreams and stuff, while Frey is all about food and sex getting sweaty and dirty out in the garden. That’s how I relate to them, anyway.

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