Freya Resources (and misc. Heathen Resources)

Online Articles about Freya:

Academic: 

H. R. Ellis-Davidson, Gods and Myths of the Viking Age.“The Goddess Freya”Hosted by thegoddessfreya.info.

Stephan Grundy, “Freyja and Frigg”, The Concept of the Goddess, London: Routledge, 1996

Reaves, William P. “The Cult of Freyr and Freyja”, 2008. Also hosted by Germanicmythology.com.

Modern pagan: 

Cara Freyasdaughter, “Freyasbok”. Revised 2014.  A good “101-level” intro handout I wrote for PantheaCon last year.

Diana Paxson, “Freyja”. Sagewoman, 2002. (also available on Hrafnar’s website.) A rich tapestry of storytelling, academic data, and ritual, dealing with all things Freyja.

“Reference Guide for the Goddess Freya.” Hosted by thegoddessfreya.info. A good “201-level” article on Freya.

 

Seidh articles online:

“Vardlokkur–The Song of the Volva”, by Pollyanna Jones. Accessible overview of seidh written for a popular audience.

“Seiðr as shamanistic practice: reconstituting a tradition of ambiguity,” by Jenny Blain. Blain describes how members of reconstructionist ‘heathen’ communities in North America are drawing accounts, such as the seeress’ activity described in The Saga of Erik the Red, in establishing seiðr as shamanistic practice, involving trance or shapeshifting, for foretelling and healing. Blain’s article examines constructions and contestations of seiðr within communities of past and present. (NOTE: For a more recent and thorough examination of this topic, see her book Nine Worlds of Seid-Magic.)

 

Articles in print about Freya:

Idunna #35, Spring, 1998, The Troth, Box 472, Berkeley, CA 94701.

Idunna #51: Freyja. Spring, 2002, The Troth, Box 472, Berkeley, CA 94701.

 

Modern Pagan Books (Non-fiction) about Freya:

Layfayllve, Patricia M. Freyja, Lady, Vanadis: An Introduction to the Goddess. Denver: Outskirts Press, 2006. A great book by a Heathen author that takes an academic look into her lore. This book also contains many of the author’s UPGs (Unusual Personal Gnosis) about Freya’s traits and preferences. Written by a Freyaswoman and former Steer (leader) of the international Heathen organization The Troth.

Gefion Vanirdottir. Fire Jewel: A Devotional For Freyja. Asphodel Press, 2013. This is a great devotional work to Freya. It contains poems, prayers, rituals, songs, and more in praise of the goddess in her various aspects. Several of these poems are hosted on my blog already under “Poetry and Songs.”

Tara Reynolds. Goddess Connections Workbook–Freyja. Amazon Digital Services Adorable short workbook on Freya and her lore, aimed at children and young adults.

Britt-Mari Nästrom, Freyja, the Great Goddess of the North, Lund Studies in the History of Religions 5, Lund: Lund University, 1995

 

Seidh and Trance:

Jenny Blain, Nine Worlds of Seid-Magic, London: Routledge, 2002

Kveldúlfr Gundarsson. “Spae-Craft, Seiðr, and Shamanism”. Hosted online by Hrafnar.org.

Gunnora (“The Viking Answer Lady”), Women and Magic in the Sagas: Seiðr and Spá”. Available on her website:  http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/ A great long-running website devoted to all things Viking. Based on a Q&A format, the author meticulously scours the lore and archaeological records for answers to all of the questions posted on her site.

 The Voluspa (seven translations), hosted by the Temple Library to our Heathen Gods. The Voluspa is the poem from which most of our knowledge of the practice of Seidh, the form of magic that Freya teaches, is drawn.

Misc:

“On Fylgias”, by Cara Freysadaughter. Summary: What is a fylgia? A fylgia is, in general, one of two things: the animal shape a person’s spirit takes when he or she journeys; or a semi-autonomous human-shaped entity who is attached to a person’s soul. Both types have strong connections with a person’s ancestral line, and can represent (or work on behalf of) an entire family.

 “On Beauty, Sex, Sexuality, and Romance in Old Norse Society,” by Cara Freyasdaughter. All of the material present here is drawn from Women in Old Norse Society, by Jenny Jochens. Dr. Jochens draws her data from the Eddas, the Sagas, and contemporary laws. She takes an interdisciplinary approach and views all of this information through the lens of linguistics, history, and modern gender analysis. Together with her book Old Norse Images of Women, and Women in the Viking Age, by Judith Jesch, we now know quite a bit about what it was like to be a woman in the Viking Age.

General Heathen Resources–Academic:

Thomas DuBois, Nordic Religions in the Viking Age. Univeristy of Pennsylvania Press, 1999.  DuBois econtextualizes the sagas of Icelandic literature, arguing that most previous saga scholars have Romanticized the Viking Age, describing the Vikings as “vastly more numerous, technologically superior, or somehow inherently more warlike” than their neighbors (11). DuBois uses what he calls a “geographical method” (focusing on every group within a certain area) because we cannot truly understand the religious traditions of the Nordic peoples in isolation. A folklorist by training, he draws upon textual evidence, archaeology, the anthropology of religion, and the study of Nordic oral tradition to provide a more complete picture of the Nordic peoples of that era. (Read my full academic review of it here.)

H.R. Ellis Davidson, Gods and Myths of the Viking Age (originally, Gods and Myths of Northern Europe, (1964)), New York: Barnes and Noble, 1996. 

_____________, Roles of the Northern Goddess, London: Routledge, 1998. Ellis Davidsons’ books, particularly the Gods and Myths of the Viking Age, are standard academic resources for many Heathens.

Jochens, Jenny. Women in Old Norse Society. New York: Cornell University Press, 1998.

Jesch, Judith. Women in the Viking Age. New York, BOYE6: 1991.

The Poetic Edda (The Elder Edda) (“Völuspá”, “Lokasenna”, “Lay of Hyndla”), translated by Lee M. Hollander, Austin: University of Texas, 1986. Hollander’s translation of the Poetic Edda is one of the most commonly used/cited of these translations.

Snorri Sturluson, “Ynglingasaga”, Heimskringla, or The Lives of the Norse Kings, translated Erling Monsen and A.H. Smith (1932), New York: Dover, 1990

Snorri Sturluson, Edda (the Younger Edda), translated by Anthony Faulkes, London: Everyman’s Library, 1987

 

General Heathen Resources–Modern Pagan:

Kveldulf Gundarsson, Teutonic Religion, St. Paul, MN: Llewellyn, 1993

Our Troth: Volume 1 and Volume 2, 2nd ed. ed. Kveldulf Gundarsson, The Ring of Troth, 2006. I received the first edition of this book while in undergrad, and for years it was one of my most treasured possessions–both due to the person who had given me the book and the amazing richness of the material therein. Vol. 1, History and Lore, focuses on the history of the Scandinavian/Germanic cultures and, more importantly in my opinion, detailed 10+ pages long descriptions of all of the deities, jotuns, and associated wights and other entities. It really is a treasure trove of information for anyone interested in the Heathen gods. Volume 2, Living the Troth, focuses on modern practices–holidays, rituals, how to start and run a kindred, etc. The books are put out by The Troth, an international Asatru organization that also puts our the quarterly Idunna magazine.

Diana Paxson. Essential Asatru. Citadel Press Books, New York: 2006. Great introduction to Heathenry. (I’m not just saying this because I happen to know Diana–it really is a great resource, and it’s the first book I’d recommend to a newcomer to Asatru.)

Devyn Gillette and Lewis Stead, “The Hammer and the Pentagram”. A classic article illustrating the many differences between Wicca and Heathenry, written by an Asatruar and a British Traditional Wiccan.

 

Mythology-based Fiction:

Diana L. Paxson, Brisingamen, New York: Ace Books, 1984. This was written by Diana before she become Heathen, if you can believe it. It’s as visceral of a description as I have ever seen of the power for the Brisingamen.  Highly recommended for any Freyaswoman/man.

Joanne Harris, The Gospel of Loki. See my review here.

 

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