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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in heathen ritual
Rainbow Season part 2: the Story of Heimdall's Initiation

My kindred held our Rainbow Season ritual to mark the end of monsoon season here in the southwest desert. After the rain comes the rainbow, so after the rainy season comes the Rainbow Season. In heathenry, the rainbow is sacred to Heimdall, so as part of our ritual, I told my version of the story of how Heimdall retrieved Freya's jewel.

Here's a short video of the stage of ritual prep in which we're putting on our ritual jewelry:

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Last modified on
Rainbow Season part 1: preparing for the ritual

My kindred’s Autumnal Equinox ritual this year is called the Rainbow Season Ritual. It’s a ritual to Heimdall and his nine mothers. Other heathen groups celebrate Vetrnatr or Winter Nights in the fall, but here in the Mojave Desert, trying to celebrate the onset of cold weather when it’s still over 100 degrees out just doesn’t feel appropriate to our local weather and landscape. If we are to honor nature, then we must take real nature into account, and not just what a date on a calendar says. I considered trying to move Winter Nights to the actual time I would expect it to start freezing out, but then it would coincide with Yule. So instead, we’re celebrating the end of monsoon season. After the thunderous, rainy, lightning-prone time of Thor comes the rainbow, the time of Heimdall.

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Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Honoring the Gods Where I Am

I live in the southwest of the USA, in the Mojave Desert, in Nevada, in Henderson, in Green Valley. This ecosystem is nowhere near the origin point of the heathen group of faiths, of which Asatru is one, which was in Northern Europe. Some things don't change-- the moon is the same from any place on Earth-- but proper times to celebrate harvest are very different here. Also, I live within a very different culture even from today's Europe, let alone the Stone Age, Bronze Age, Iron Age, or even the Viking Age.

Yet, I think my simplest rituals are not too different from what the ancient heathens did. Even here, in this very different place. Even though I'm speaking modern English. Even when my perception of what is special and unique enough to be fitting to give to the gods is filtered through a modern understanding of science, as when I became excited and awestruck over a chimera pear and decided to eat it in honor of the gods.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    Sounds delicious!
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Earlier this year I bought a persimmon tree and a pawpaw tree from Edible Landscaping. They are both still alive and growing tall

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Asatru FAQ: Bad Ancestors

FAQ: I want to be a good heathen and honor ancestors but my ancestors were bad people. Who can I honor?

Related FAQ: I'm going to be attending a sumbel in which there will be a round toasted to the ancestors, but I was adopted and don't know my ancestors' names. Who can I honor?

My answer: One can honor Askr and Embla, the first man and woman according to heathen mythology (made by Odin and his brothers.) One could also honor any gods that appear in one's family tree. According to heathen mythology, everyone is descended from Rig, whom most Asatruars consider to be an aspect of Heimdall, thus, anyone could honor Heimdall. There might also be other gods one could include among ancestors, depending on one's family line. I have honored Lollus as an ancestor.

You don't have to honor your literal biological ancestors to be a good heathen. When the sumbel horn is passed in the ancestor round, you can honor the mighty dead whom you admire whether you are lineally related to them or not. You can honor your personal heroes, the elders of your path, a writer who influenced you-- that's my personal hope of ever being remembered, since I have no children. You can honor the founders of your nation, city, profession, or art. Honor your spouse's ancestors. Toast your favorite childhood teacher, the composer of your favorite song, or anyone with whom you have an emotional connection.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Erin Lale
    Erin Lale says #
    Nods. The Disir have a named holiday, Disablot, so they were definitely honored in ancient times. One honor them, or the alfar per
  • Victoria
    Victoria says #
    Victoria Wednesday, 14 August 2019 · I honour the mothers and fathers of my ancestral lineage. Heathens get too wrapped up in in
Alfablot: Honoring the Spirits of the Earth and the Dead

“‘Do not come any farther in, wretched fellow’, said the woman; ‘I fear the wrath of Óðinn; we are heathen.’ The disagreeable female, who drove me away like a wolf without hesitation, said they were holding a sacrifice to the elves inside her farmhouse.” (“Austrfararvísur”)

Feast of Spirits

The Alfablot is an ancient Norse holiday celebrated around this time of year, the end of the harvest and the start of the winter season. As for many other peoples across the world, offerings to the spirits were in order during seasonal shifts, especially when advancing into the most challenging season.

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  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    Having read Journey to Ixilan by Castaneda and Supernatural by Graham Hancock I am inclined to view the Elves as primarily the spi

Posted by on in Paths Blogs
Sumbel at Las Vegas Pagan Pride Day 2018

Last Saturday, Prudence Priest and I conducted an Asatru sumbel ritual at Las Vegas Pagan Pride Day 2018, at the Unitarian Universalist Church. I acted as gythia (priestess, aka gydhja) and Prudence acted as valkyrie (mead woman.) We were in the workshop space, rather than the speaker space, because sumbel is an audience participation ritual where everyone makes a toast. Our ritual was packed, and went very well.

Before beginning the ritual, while waiting for all participants to assemble, I explained the Heathen Visibility Project (see my post with that title) and let participants know where to sit or stand if they wished to be in the photos or to not be in the photos. More photos of this event are available on my Facebook, Twitter, and DeviantArt pages.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Good Ritual/Bad Ritual

Good ritual...

...we do together.

Bad ritual...

...is done to you.

Good ritual...

...lets you experience.

Bad ritual...

...tells you what you feel.

Good ritual...

...connects.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Asa West
    Asa West says #
    Truth.
  • Thesseli
    Thesseli says #
    Um, YEAH.

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