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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in thunder

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Witch Doctor Clause

Saturday night we offered to Thunder.

Together we sang, danced, and prayed that He be merciful to our gathering.

Sunday night the big storm hit.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Gerald Home
    Gerald Home says #
    Steven, Thank you for leading that ritual to appease the Thunders. Though, I was one who teased you post storm, I was appreciative
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Along with the sheer animal fear, I'll admit to some moments of self-doubt while I stood there, water running down my back, knowin
  • Lizann Bassham
    Lizann Bassham says #
    ah, as we often say in my Reclaiming Witch community - "This shit is real "

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Pouring to Thunder

Yikes! Pagan Spirit Gathering 2015 canceled in mid-run due to flooding and rainstorms past and predicted.

What's a pagan response? On the immemorial principle of do ut des, a gift for a gift, perhaps we need to begin our outdoor gatherings with an offering to the god concerned.

Well, you know gods. The answer may still be “no.”

But it never hurts to ask.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Thunderstones

Truly, the Old Gods are everywhere. You can't escape them.

I had been listening to Bach's Goldberg Variations on the radio. “That was American pianist Simone Dinnerstein,” said the announcer.

 

Dinnerstein (rhymes with “seen”): a not uncommon Ashkenazic surname. But suddenly it was as if my ears had become unstopped.

 

It's Yiddish for “Thunder stone.” (German would be Donarstein.) There are men named Þórsteinn in Iceland, and Torsten and Torstein in Scandinavia, even today. English Thurston could be “Thunar's stone” (or tún: Thunder's enclosure). It's a name from the Danelaw—the area of England settled by Scandinavians—so it could bear the name of the Norse rather than the English Thunder. But they're both still Thunder.

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Pulling Down Lightning

We have it from the mothers and fathers that Thunder is a powerful Protector.

To call on His might, stand tall. With your strong hand, reach up into over-heaven. Seize the lightning, and grasp it in your hand. With arm extended, pull it down to heart-height. See the flash, hear the roar, smell the superheated air.

Having brought down lightning, you must give it a ground. With arm still extended, move your clutched fist horizontally beneath the down-stroke to form the shape of an inverted T. For obvious reasons, this is mostly done from left to right.

As you do this, intone:

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Pocket Gods

I've never much been one for religious jewelry, but that doesn't mean I haven't generally got a god or two tucked somewhere or other about my person. You could call them “pocket gods.”

The Norse called them hlutir and carried them in pouches. (Hlutr is the same as English lot, as in “drawing lots,” which gives one something of an idea of their cultural importance.) The witch-wife Heiðr once told Ingimund the Old, while he still lived in Norway, that he would settle in an undiscovered land west over sea, and that the sign of the truth of her seeing would be this: that the little silver hlutr of Frey that he always carried in his pouch would be lost, but that he would find it again buried in the ground when he dug to raise the pillars of his house in the new land. And so indeed it came to be when, years later, he settled in Iceland.

Which pocket-gods I carry depends on the season and the vagaries of my own thought and mood. Shown above are two that are frequently with me, both worked in Baltic amber: a Sun-disc and a Thunder-ax. Sun and Thunder are two of my best-loved gods, and I like to bear their main (power) with me as I go through my day.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A Question of Theology

There were once three neighbors who lived side-by-side: a Dakota, a heathen, and a santero. Each had a fine large backyard garden.

One afternoon a beautiful thunderstorm rumbled through and watered all the gardens.

Grateful, the three gave thanks, respectively, to the Thunderbirds, Þórr, and Changó.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Thunder Snow

Sleet chitters against the panes as I write this. Our all-too-brief Bridey's Spring is, it would seem, well and gone, alas. Cold air masses are sailing down from the north towards us (they call them “Alberta Clippers” here), driving snow before them, with deep cold in their wake. Today they're predicting Thundersnow.

Thunder-and-lightning snowstorms aren't something that we see here very often. To hear the very Voice of Summer in Winter's cold midst cannot fail to feel uncanny. Thunder and snow just don't keep company much.

We last heard Thunder's voice on October 6th. Perhaps, like other birds, the Thunderbirds fly south in the winter. The First Thunder of the year is always a sure sign of spring. In Russia they say that Perún is breaking up the ice with his hammer. Snorri, no doubt, would have it that þórr is smiting the Frost Giants.* According to our local folk wisdom, spring's First Thunder is a sure predictor of future weather: six months later comes First Frost. Apparently the climatological evidence (here in Minnesota, anyway) actually bears out this correlation. Today is February 10. Oh dear.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Thanks Anne, I'm honored. Around here the spiritual and the meteorological just naturally seem to go hand-in-hand.
  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Oi, indeed. What a great post -- I love your work!

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