Thursday, July 31, 2008

Of Greed's Gain (Gullveigsaga)

Of greed's gain,
and nature fallen from gold too eagerly sought,
whose powers of enchantment set even the Gods' hearts
to dread,
and didst outcast the Bright, Merciful One
from heavenly seats to weeping couches of Hel.
How then first came this foul seductress
to turn the tables from satiety
so that, crying "never enough!"
the world might be plundered for dross?
From those too large to sustain proportion;
Overbearing, hungry mouths always gnashing,
amidst the rocks and bergs so barren.
Amongst the dull, as a burning pyre amongst ashes,
bright she rose,
until the heavens themselves could not ignore her,
as some cast-off fruit of Sun's womb
wretched amongst monsters she seemed, and
taking pity,
the Gods up took her swiftly
into the cloud-lands' foggy castles,
surrounded by moats of thund'rous flame.
There nurtured, there warmed,
there taught all love they shared,
and she with gifts unfolded not surpassed
with second sight and mind to make, though fearful.
Proud, the heavenly host, at this,
their adopted daughter,
who learned their ways so quickly,
and burgeoning full of promise seemed.
She knew and grew, and grew and knew,
her knowing hunger grown so hungry not
but all the world could feed it.
Yet as she gazed more on the Well
whose 'flections bring the sight,
her brightness dimmed her ashen heart
grown cold with fears and doom.
For she looked through her heart,
as all must who see ; saw Ruin,
Despair, and Worlds a'tumbling down,
whence all fair seemed foul, vain,
worthy of wretched downcast.
So she devices measured,
and cunning great, set out to spoil
to gild a world so disappointed,
setting heart's revenge
on empty hopes' tribute so to soothe
the broken promises spirit boasted proud.
Saw and spake fear,
then grief was born.
Saw and spake grief,
then greed was born,
as a lover robbed of consummation
seeks gild and bitter vengeance.
What endless wergild unpaid
a world so disappointed
by fear foreseen, believed.
Tho' sistered by love, to fear she gave
thus shared that fear far and wide,
as if it were a secret, a mystery great
and deep.
To homes she came, mixing minds
with madness, overturning comfort,
made vain enjoyment with despair.
"These gifts -- too brief! The fire comes!
and taking all down, it will burn!
So in vain are fruits and flowers,
take heed of gold and gain.
What you can, lay hold of,
lay hold of now, for
empty is the morrow, and all
goes down in fiery flames."
So fear consumes us, but will not
be consumed,
ever rising again from ashes,
unless we, God-following good,
banish her ourselves, with all
the powers the Gods have given.
For all her curses, sayeth Vanadis,
will come to naught.
Do you have the power
to face that fear?
Or will you, like she, join substance
with lies and irresponsibility, giving birth
to poison, disease, and ravenous war,
the monsters that bound should be?
Heed the Gods' lessons and let their wounds
be your lessons. She whispers
sweet lies, seducing souls
with mortality's bitterness, that we might miss
the moment of spirit's sight, that sees beyond
flames and sea's flames hoarded.
For all her curses, sayeth Vanadis,
will come to naught.
For all her curses, sayeth Vanadis,
will come to naught.

Pay Your Dues to Tyr

What does Tyr, that mighty God of the rank-and-file soldier, have to teach?

Tyr can help you acknowledge where you're angry, and how to channel that anger so it doesn't bottle up inside. Tyr can help you learn to be rugged, tough, and skilled in fighting. He'll teach you how to be bunkered down, trained, readied, seasoned, a firm head square on your shoulders, undaunted, unphased by temporary setbacks and defeats, eye on the victory, weathered, confident in the face of adversity, sinewy, knowing muscle-deep how to counter, parry, block, and dodge blows, whatever their source, experienced in what to be concerned about and what to let slide off your shoulders.

He can teach you how to refuse to get upset by what matters little, gain equanimity, learn to turn potential defeats into fighting chances, how to face significant defeats without giving up, how to be firm, resolved, holding your ground, defending yourself, protecting what is important to you, standing on your rights and fighting for them, demonstrating dogged determination.

He'll help you know when to back off from an unworthy fight, how to choose your battles, how to feel good about fighting well in a fair fight, and to feel ok when forced to fight unfairly in a fight you didn't choose. He can teach you how to realize when a friend has crossed the line and become an unfriend. (Heathen sources seldom speak of attacking strangers, but rather "unfriends", those who have crossed lines and broken confidences and treaties.) Tyr can train you in how to keep your footing, knowing you can hold your own against friend or foe if necessary, and feeling good and strong about it. He can help you create an arena where you can fight the fight you need to fight, instead of keeping it inside and letting it eat away at you.

All of these feats he knows well, for he is "remarkable for his wealth and feats of arms", as Saxo puts it in Book Four of his History of the Danes (Fisher translation), "adorn[ing] his sovereignty with athletic prowess". And mighty feats they are, much needed in this world we live in. Tyr knows what it is like down in the trenches, and knows the skills of mind, body, and endurance needed to meet those challenges. He knows how to toughen up the timid, and bring courage to the fearful, for he knows how intimidating the battles that force themselves upon us can be. He teaches bravery, how to confront and overcome the forces of fear and panic. This is especially necessary in combat, because war is often largely a bluff-gamble of noise and intimidation, mixed with killing, in which panic can ruin the day. Being able to dig in one's heels against panic, and face one's fear may be one of the richest gifts Tyr offers. He knows how to do this because it is Tyr who binds the Big, Bad Wolf. (Although he has also fed that wolf, and thus has an ambivalent relationship, a tricky, delicate balance that can easily go bad if Fenris grows out of proportion, which he, as a jotunn, has an inherent tendency to do so. Nevertheless, Tyr, taking responsibility, will do what it takes to bind the scary, frightening, rapacious monster.)

Tyr is that loving, gruff drill sergeant who makes sure we are prepared for the roughs and nicks amongst the scrapes and scratches of life. He is, therefore, one of the best friends anyone could ask for in a life full of challenges. Pay your dues to Tyr!

Odin and the Dynamic Nature

Odin is about spiritual warfare to advance evolution. Warfare against stagnancy, on the one hand ; warfare against that which works against life, on the other. All For The World Tree might be his slogan. Advancing Evolution Through Intelligence-in-Action (ie., wisdom) might be another. See the Big Picture, Look At What Is Right Before You : Transcendent Realism (To See Eternity in a Grain of Sand).

Odin has force and fury against those who remain immature in their treatment of the life-base, and the development of their powers of wisdom. He can demonstrate a decided lack of patience with evolutionary geekdom. He can have that fatherly no-nonsense realism, that sees right through bullshit and justifications, and looks at the reality of conduct and its significance. Does the conduct have sufficient cosmic perspective for the consciousness-potential that the being was given at the beginning of time? Does the conduct demonstrate respect for Beloved Mother Earth --- in a real, bottom-line kind of way? Does the conduct achieve purpose? Does it actualize powers and therefore manifest worth?

Odin wants to see development and fruition of powers. He wants to see people seizing life and living it as fully, richly, and in as earthy and whole a manner as possible, leaving no stone unturned. He wants people like Yggdrasil, who really root into the soil, grit, and texture of this world --- even and despite its hardships, work, pain, and struggle --- and yet who manage to stretch themselves up towards the stars. Odin demands a good life from you, no matter what the cards were that were dealt to you : make the best of them, live a good life, a rich life, one that blesses you and your folk and your land. He wrote an entire poem on how to live a good life in the midst of a world that often falls short of our expectations and hope. If we develop all our powers --- and there is no excuse, moral or otherwise, that withstands this imperative --- we can discover multidimensional wealth, which may become a blessing to those around us.

Odin knows the primary battle is always the intelligence-battle. Intelligent design outstrategizes opponents. It is this battle of the mind he spearheads. Tyr is more specialized in physical war and the sundry skills involved : martial arts, training in knowing and defending one's rights, endurance testing, and so forth. Tyr brings it down to a practical level, for the footsoldier in the trenches, while Odin confers with the generals to inspire strategy.

Odin is like a crazy old hippie, a Wulf Zendik philosopher with the sinew and experience of a street-smart transient whose leanness betrays an ability to play tough, dirty, and remarkably strong to win a fight, along with the unorthodox strategies of a Hannibal Smith, who seeks the infraworld beneath and between this one in order to engage fresh surprise that surprises opponents (and even himself ; one of Odin's charms is his ability to surprise himself, and marvel in life's wonder). Discovery is of such value that our ancestors portrayed the All-Father himself as one who ever quested after discovery, and who wasn't omniscient. Even for the Gods, the thrill of life is its surprising nature. It's astounding that there has been so little theological work done on the notion of surprise as a divine value ; it little accords, of course, with notions of predestination.

Odin is like a strong father figure holding astounding amounts of Uranian energy. He has both the stern and the loving aspects of a father. He is the kind of father who demands growth and a certain wonder for learning from his children. Odin has a very grounded, pragmatic approach that knows that all accounting catches up eventually, and thus responsibility is no empty concept but an existential imperative with which it pays to be no-nonsense, and that means, among other things, living within our means, personally and planetarily.

Odin holds out the Beyond for us -- the Transcendent, that which transcends all boundaries -- as the ultimate goal of evolution, the teleology that creates the drive to explore and evolve, the engine of dynamism, but which runs up against inertia. Odin must throw stirrings-up in the midst of any comforts which bar transcendence. There is ever more mystery to explore, and Odin would not have us forget it. Transcendence -- the Ever-Beyond -- is what nags at our mind's curiosity, creates seeking in us, and pulls us along our evolutionary path. The Gods of immanence, that care for this world as such, are good Gods, but there must be those who ever champion what lies beyond.

The Gods made this world a difficult world of challenges so that we could grow into it and mature through intelligent struggle. Life, moreover, will not work without complexity, that dynamic between chaos and order. Because of this, things are always a bit chaotic, and we are asked to learn to go with the flow, to dance with the chaos, to become, like Odin, masters of wod. The Gods do not primarily want life to be painful, although that is, unfortunately, often a secondary result of living in a difficult world full of unpredictability. They want an environment tough enough that we are required to draw upon innate strengths and develop them to their fullest. Without difficulty, we might remain idle and not seek mastery, and it is mastery they wish for us. Through mastery, we may come into fullness and robust peace and joy.

The Gods have given us strengths to develop into fruition so that we may help ourselves. If we neglect this responsibility (and privilege), we have no reason to complain that they are not helping us. Our job is to develop ourselves in every moment to the peak of our powers, and there, at that point, when our power falls short, and we ask explicitly for help, help is given. We may ask for help in developing our strengths, and help will be given. But ultimately it is our responsibility. It is help, not take-over or rescue. The Gods want us to feel confident about our own powers and abilities. They don't want us to become dependent. Interdependent is ok ; dependent is not. Our job is to become big, strong trees with great branches that give forth fruit.

Ours are not controlling, omnipotent Gods responsible for all details in life. They let life flow on, and they shape it. It is always a matter of exerting shaping forces upon a primary spontaneity, a flow of becoming called wyrd. So everything wrong or right which happens is not the "Gods' doing". That is paranoid thinking. They are not meddlers who choose to interfere and intervene in every little detail of our lives. They are not a form of divine secret-police or homeland security tapping our phones and opening our emails. They are shapers of life, and unless we ask for their help, they trust in the tools they have given us, and the latent gifts they've planted which sometimes only challenges awaken. Like loving parents, they know they cannot do it all for us, but must let us struggle through it ourselves, because only in that way does one really learn.

They are not cold to our calls. If we sincerely attune to them, not with random thoughts, petulant whines, and interior complaints -- remember, they are not secret police -- but take the time to address ourselves to them and ask for help, help they will send. They are loving Gods. The etymologists may have doubts, but I am certain that the word "god" is an inflection and intensifier of the word "good". The Gods are the ur-sources of good. They are the Go(o)ds. But it is help they send, not a deus ex machina that does it for us. They do not spoon feed us. They wish greater dignity for us. They will not infantilize us. They know it's more difficult, especially in hard times, to do it ourselves, but the resulting dignity, if we can figure it out, brings a sense of mastery, a large, grand, proud adult sense of accomplishment they reserve for those who succeed in maturing the fruits they planted within us.

But the difficulty level of the survival world explains much about the instincts of the creatures here, who are not evil, but without the luxury that mastery brings, and therefore there is something tough and badgery about the creatures here. If nastiness is needed at times to secure a place in this world, animals must be thrifty with the resources they have. Their ability to be grim -- to demonstrate thriftiness, teeth, and grip -- manages to secure them their modest domain of enjoyment and comfort. Creatures without mastery do not have the options that mastery makes available, and so they have to work with the options they have, instead of those they can generate. Jealousy, revenge, resentment, hoarding -- all of these make sense in a certain evolutionary / environmental context.

In this regard, resting on one's victories is a different thing altogether than resting on idleness. Gemutlichkeit -- based on strength -- is good. (Here, hearty Thor is our exemplar.) Full, hearty enjoyment of leisure cleverly and boldly won, as part of an active existence, is good, but idleness coming from passivity, resignation, dormancy, or defeat represents a pacification of our vital energies and principles, which are needed to fructify our lives, and which, fully activated, generate fruit.

Ease is not a given. It is the fruit of mastery, and it requires intelligence and active tending to maintain. Our sense that life can be easier is a true one, but it requires the development of skills and cunning different than those that maintain us in difficulty. It is mastery which allows us to bring warmth, flesh, and exhuberance to the cold beauty of the spartan world, a beauty more sublime than lovely, yet one the Gods, warding over nature, and therefore masters over it, are able to enjoy. The starving man cannot appreciate life's stunning beauties, nor the shivering man rest on furs. The Gods shaped this difficult world, however, so that within its cold and spartan sublimity there are potentials for greater mastery and therefore comfort and enjoyment --- if tapped.

And mastery is created by creating an innangards, a strong combining of wills for mutual frith which drives out all that is inimical to that. Within the gard is hearth and furs and comfort, the joys of conviviality and philosophical riddles, and the ease of a world built on strength. Outside the gard is the harsh and cold Spartan sublimity of the world --- beautiful, yes, in its own way, but terrible, too, sometimes.

To avoid the harsh world, we must ask ourselves whether we are really drawing on all of our resources. This means two things : study -- really taking the time to pay attention, absorb, learn, question, then go back and pay attention again, over and over, until one has really "got" it, and two, enjoyment -- enjoy what you have, use it, utilize it to multiply powers and pleasures. The Gods have little patience for those who do not enjoy well the gifts they have given.

But help they will give, in times of trouble, if we can get it. That means we must grasp the help, recognize it, understand it, appreciate it, not turn it away, not reject it or hold it in contempt. Great help often begins with small things. We must learn the art of resourcefulness, of making sure we are utilizing all the resources at our disposal, and then, the art of opportunizing, of being resourceful with opportunities that arise, making sure we are capitalizing upon whatever help comes our way, turning it to an advantage. At the peak of the possibilities of capitalization lies Draupnir, where one small golden ring generates eight more each evening. It is an ideal, an Everest, to strive for. Meanwhile we must develop our hiking skills here in the valley.

Odin and the Gods he leads want us on our toes so that we can enjoy life, and we will not enjoy life when we are shut down. What we call "comfort" is often just a rut. Odin doesn't want us in ruts. He wants us mobilized. Ariovistus bragged to Caesar that his men inter annos XIIII tectum non subissent, for fourteen years had not come under a roof, a phrase which is echoed in Orkneyinga Saga, which has þat var þrjá vetr er hann lá úti á herskipum svá at hann kom eigi undir sótkan rapt, "that was thirty winter that he was out on a warship so that he never came under sooty rafters". In other words, a pride in keeping the folk mobilized. Active mobilization fits wod. Again, we are talking about a spiritual warfare against lassitude, torpor, and stagnancy, and not primarily physical combat. This is not combat as the martial force itself of conflict, anger, clash, and the pomp and strutting of machismo, areas readily warded by Tyr and Thor, but the mobilization, alertness, and strategic, in-the-moment readiness or preparation for the challenges and obstacles in the way of mastery, obstacles which blind our vision. Odin's use for war, in other words, is a spiritual one. The forces stirred up by warfare are the very forces needed to live a vital life ; or, expressed in the proper order, the forces needed to live a vital life are the very forces that need to be stirred up in order to be victorious in war. There is no victory without attunement to the dynamic nature, and no freedom with stagnation. Wod, freedom, and frith, ironically, all serve each other, even though wod may lead to wig. Odin doesn't want us fighting physical battles all the time --- are you crazy? That's life as a vision of hell! The jotnar are well-accustomed to this kind of stupidity. As gorilla-jocks, they are clumsy, dull, full of resentment and reactive forces, because they are not confronting and engaging forces of dynamism and opposition in real time. On the other hand, a "warrior" who is really on top of his game confronts the dynamic nature of reality and oppositional forces in such real time as to resolve them in the moment without having to go to war, except in the most exceptional of circumstances. The true "warrior" fights his battles so as to circumvent wars. If we will live that engaged, mobilized to the currents and eddies of life, fighting the spiritual war, Odin will teach us how to surf with such grace and nimbleness that the only name we will be able to give to our adventure in mastery is --- fun!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Let's Let Down Our Hair and Have Fun!!

My personal God is Freyr, from whose name we get "freedom". He takes the chains off! He removes the handcuffs! All the handcuffs! All the restrictions, all the seriousness with which we weigh down life, so we can have some fun, and enjoy ourselves! He is the festival God, who gets everyone to let down their hair, and enjoy themselves without inhibitions. It is this kind of energy that creates peace, and fosters love, for only in freedom can we truly love. What room is there in a heart that is weighed down for love?

I just wish that more people could be mature enough to let down their adult selves and exercise a little childlikeness without becoming childish. Why let the tyrants who run this world weigh us down with deadly seriousness? What is it worth if one gains the whole world but loses one's soul? I don't want love to be an office with requirements, regulations, and expectations ; I want it to be a freeing that empowers and makes one feel like one could take on the world!!

What if we gave up the fear, and just let ourselves throw into the experience of love, freely, knowing that if our self gets lost in freedom, it will rediscover itself through that same freedom?! Shouldn't love be a little disruptive? Are our ruts or even our goals that important?

Lucian's Dialogues about Saturn and the Saturnalia apply to our God Freyr, who lifts up deadly seriousness from the Festivals, and returns life to Jubilee, with the entire community in a frith that momentarily transcends and abolishes the class system.

Back in 2003, I was going to a club in the Glendale / Pasadena area that played 80's, punk, and a little disco. With a friend, I brought pillows and blankets, and we incited fun pillow fights, and dragged people around on the dance floor on the blanket. It was so much fun, and people were so receptive! Sure, there were a few pouty Goths who didn't like their little serious-space invaded by fun, but who cares? They needed to lighten up! I knew I was bringing the energy of Freyr to that place, because so many joined in our games, and we felt the spirit of fun, and the feeling that we could take on all the giants! Unfortunately, a real Gullveig/Angrboda scold ran the club, and kicked us out, despite the fact that so many enjoyed these games! I want to create that kind of free fun everywhere I go. Freyr is happy when people are free and having a good time. A "freols" is what the old folks called it, a festival or party where you can hear the word "free" embedded right in the beginning.

When I was in the 6th Grade, I was really into disco, and all the rockers/stoners hated me, because such music seemed "frivolous". Punkers told me that disco had no "serious message". I could never understand this. Isn't fun itself a serious message? Dancing is its own reward. My cousins and I would go into my room, turn on the "Saturday Night Fever" album, and turn the lights on and off really quickly to look like a strobe light while we danced.

People think all pranks are of Loki. This is not true. Freyr can get into a little mischief, too, but it is a different kind of mischief. It is the mischief of fun and frith, not of ill will and chaos. It is the mischief of Robin Hood, while Loki finds fun in burning things down. Freyr is not afraid to crossdress or dance with bells on his feet or move crazily across the stage. He's a God of Theatre in Everyday Life, the Life and Drama of the Party.

Yes, I can document all this thoroughly, but why not just take my word for it? Haven't I proven my dedication and rigor? This rant is not about rigor but revelation! Freyr is not some character locked in a book of old, but a living force and personality with whom I am intimately familiar! No, I'm not some psychotic claiming some privileged and pope-establishing mystical experience. Rather, much of the time, in my energy, I embody Frey. At a party, I am the one getting down on the dance floor and getting people to play games. When I was at college, I was known for skipping down the college green dancing and singing to Mick Jagger and Jethro Tull. I've been a scion of the stage since I was in the 6th Grade, and have celebrated being weird since that time as well, knowing that "weirdness" is very important to the soul. It's a freedom to be what one can be, beyond the strait jacket of normality.

Freyr lifts off all chains!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Matter is Monstrous, but Nature is Sacred

There is something monstrous about the material world. It began this way, in chaos. The Gods took something monstrous and made it good. We know this for we are told that the Gods dismembered Ymir and reshaped his bones, blood, skull, hair, etc. into our present world-shape and order.

Because of its origins, the world requires the inervention, from time to time, of the Gods' heill to keep it from returning to the monstrous. The Gods bless the world to keep it good, although their original establishing acts took something ungood and made it good and possible to be good.

But even still, it is not perfect ... yet with luck and blessings, good enough ...

The establishing acts reshaped the cosmos to give it new direction and tendency, an arrangement that made for better, more productive, and fertile flows. But it still being an arrangement of flawed matter, there are counter-currents, and sacrifice/worship/offerings are necessary to invoke the needed restorative heill.

It is true that Nature is sacred in this tradition, but nature is not understood as mere molecular particle physics, which partakes of Ymir, but rather that matter which has been domesticated and shaped by the Gods and their nature-servants : dwarves and elves ; dwarves primarily
through tending mineral matter into crystalline arrangement capable of supporting higher life processes ; elves tending vegetable matter and through that animals. That which we call "Nature" is the result of multiples and multiples of beings in their daily work and tending. The acts of the elves' facilitation allows growth to occur. If they were to withdraw from their activity, the world would become winter.

Matter as such is not "sacred" but suspect and subject to monstrosity. When it becomes the material for life, however, which is a higher process, it can then participate in the sacredness of that natural life process.

The world is thus not fallen from a perfect state, but improved from a highly imperfect state, attaining an imperfect goodness that with luck and effort is good enough.

But the improvement requires periodic renewal to counter counter-flows of monstrosity that inevitably leak into the system. The cosmos requires creative activity to renew itself.

The fact that there is a tendency towards monstrosity does not make us or the cosmos "sinful", although it certainly makes us subject to flaw, because we can hardly be blamed for the cosmos' basic matter and tendencies. However, we are responsible for supporting creative activity that renews life-processes, and making sure that we don't increase the levels of monstrosity in the world by supporting the forces of monstrosity.

Gnosticism took this framework one step further, by assuming that matter was irredeemable, even in Nature form. It saw that matter was monstrous, but very little ability for it to be taken up into Blessed forms. Because of this, within Gnosticism, Nature was not sacred.

On the other hand, some modern paganisms, as well as some non-Indo-European paganisms, make simplistic assertions about the sacredness of all things that does not speak to the common-sense reality that many things go wrong in the world, and belie the sometimes nightmarish nature of reality.

The older Indo-European system evidenced in the Norse material demonstrates a common sense compromise between these two positions, whereby Matter, as with the Gnostics, is suspect, and therefore productive of unfortunate circumstances, but which is also, by being
taken up by blessings of the Gods and their Agents, capable of participating in the divine order.

Thus, the universe is, as a friend suggested, a "fixer-upper". The Gods didn't "create" the universe. They organized it. They took something imperfect and gave it shape, a good shape. That establishing act funded all else that followed. They established the zone, then simply ward and renew it. The establishing act of shaping allowed all other possibilities to unfold. Everyone is given a domain in which to bricolage. Everyone gets to try their hand at somethign close by. Everyone is allotted a time and space in which to work, a little sub-domain in which they can experiment and try their workshop creativity ---- sub-domains all made possible by the Gods' great gift of establishment, making all other projects possible.

Part of the blessing of the Worth-ship cycle is the Gods' gifts of heill to confirm and correct, adjusting ancient law to new conditions. Heill enacts what the Lombard King Rothari called renovet et emendet, "renewal and freeing-from-error". The fact that everything is made from Ymir and his kin suggests that periodically, from time to time, the universe must be cleansed of error that slips into the system. Worthship is a part of upholding the good order the Gods brought to the world.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Ziggys Cynical Summary of Heimskringla

And then Asshole King # 512 went pillaging and burning common folks homes. Yea, how glorious.

Then Asshole King #513 went pillaging and burning common folks homes. Yea, how glorious.

Then Asshole King #514 went pillaging and burning common folks homes. Yea, how glorious.

Oh, wow, lets write a poem about how marvelous the sword play was when these brute bullies were out there burning down peoples homes. Wow, how brave and glorious they were.

Wow, what a fabulous, honorable ancestry.

Then Asshole King # 515 went pillaging and burning common folks homes. Yea, how glorious.

When you read a book, and are looking back to the glory days of how interesting and edifying the Old Testament was, you know it is really bad, boring writing.

In fact, Heimskringla is only good if you use it in reverse : do the opposite of everything these kings do, and you should be fine, because the characters in these sagas lie, cheat, betray their best friends, burn down people while they are at sacred sumbles (about 50 times or more throughout the sagas), trample on the odal rights of bonders, break alliances and oaths, and burn, burn, burn, burn, burn, burn, burn common folks villages.


Yes, feel free to start a dialogue with me about this. I realize there are a few precious gems in Heimskringla, but overall, it is a dung heap. Feel free to educate me otherwise. Try! It might be a fun exercise. Try showing me how all this pillaging and burning is really glorious. I think its the actions of a bunch of barbaric assholes.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

She Who Runs With Panthers

She who runs with the panthers
through the fields and valleys,
high mountain passes and prairies
wild woman prancing as petals fall
from her unbound, shaking hair,
an unrolling carpet of flowers follows
her every soft thump and footstep.
Then, donning wings, like a hawk,
she flies, wherever she wills,
and lovers, catching her dreamlike
from the corner of an eye, find
passion renewed, and love reflowered.
Praise this Flower Maiden of Bobcats and Beasts!
Praise Odr's Woman, sister of the great King Frodi.

Bless Beloved Sol!

Brightest incandescence spinning
like a glowing wheel smiling light
of smiles upon laughing elves. Sol
smiles the most beautiful smile;
the world is hers, every day, giving light
and life, all Alfheim dancing to her holy
pageant, their foremost Dag leading her
train across the heavenly cloak of Odin.
All darkness dispelled, she once knew
pain beyond any girl's knowing, but now
she is the light of the world, and the babes
dance in the garden, she is pure joy, wise
like a wise aunt, the beloved valkyrie,
Maiden of the Flaming Disc, streaming
orange and gold purity blanching out
any ill, anywhere she goes. Bless
Beloved Sol!