Posts Tagged With: Norns

Deity of the Day for November 24th is Arachne

Deity of the Day

Arachne

Greek Spider Goddess.

A Lydian girl skilled in weaving, she dared to challenge Athene to compete with her. The contest was held, and Arachne’s work was faultless: impudently, it portrayed some of the Gods’ less reputable deeds, including Athene’s father Zeus abducting Europa. Furious, Athene turned her into a spider, doomed eternally to spin thread drawn from her own body. But the Spider Goddess is more archetypal than this story suggests: spinning and weaving the pattern of destiny like the Moerae or the Norns, and enthroned in the middle of her spiral-pathed stronghold like Arianrhod. Athene here represents Athenian patriarchal thinking, trying to discipline earlier Goddess-concepts.

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Calendar of the Sun for Monday, April 30

Calendar of the Sun
30 Eostremonath

Walpurgisnacht Day VIII – May Eve

Color: Black
Element: Air
Altar: Upon a black cloth lay eight candles, with a ninth one for Odhinn’s nine days, a figure of the World Tree, two nails, sterile needles, a sterile blade, a marker, and all the runes.
Offerings: Pain. Blood.
Daily Meal: Fasting again, from the night before to this day’s Hesperis.

Walpurgisnacht Invocation VIII

Great Odhinn, half-blind and limping,
Worn through by his travels,
Came before the Norns, the three Fates,
Urd the elder, grey and wrinkled as stone,
Pulling the threads of life from her long white hair
And spinning them fine and strong,
Verdandi the weaver, fair and brilliant,
On her loom of many colors,
And Skuld the dark maiden in armor
On her great black horse,
With her blade that slashes life away.
And Odhinn said to them, Give me magic,
That I may have understanding of all things,
That I may work great wights of power,
That my knowledge shall grow.
The Norns said unto him, What price
Shall you pay for this knowledge, O Odhinn,
Once King of Asgard, once keeper of Valhalla,
Once Lord of the Aesir, All-Father of the Gods,
Now a one-eyed, limping beggar on the road
With no home before you and no home behind you,
With dirt on your hands and dust in your mouth,
And the birds of ill omen flying about you,
What price will you pay for this wisdom?
Would you be wounded even unto the death?
And Odhinn said, I will pay any price you ask,
O givers of Fate whom all must obey.
I do surrender myself into your hands.
And so the Norns took Odhinn’s body,
And brought it to the great World Tree,
Yggdrasil, on which lie all the Nine Worlds,
And they nailed him to the tree,
Crucified him onto the great ash
And left him there to live or die.
And Odhinn’s blood ran down the tree
In rivers, and they gathered it
Like fine red thread, and spun his Wyrd,
And wove it into tapestry, and stood ready to cut it
Should he fail in his quest.
Odhinn hung on that windswept tree
For nine days and nine nights,
And the worlds whirled by him
And the blood ran down him
And the hail pelted him like knives.
And in the moment before he died,
His vision cleared, and he saw before him
All the runes, their magic, their wisdom,
And he seized them, crying out,
And fell from Yggdrasil’s arms
Back onto Midgard’s hands,
And opened his eyes into a new dawn,
And it was Spring in the world,
And the time of renewal was upon it,
So Odhinn rose to his weary feet
And found that the path before him
Led him in only one direction,
And that was home.

Chant:
Cauldron of Changes
Blossom of Bone
Arc of Eternity
Hole in the Stone

(Each member comes forth one at a time, and one who has been chosen to do the work of the ritual takes a sterile needle and pricks their finger, and each leaves blood upon the figure of the World Tree as a sacrifice. Then each closes their eyes and takes blindly a rune from the altar, and a message from Odhinn shall be seen therein. That rune should be then drawn upon their flesh, in marker for those who have not the courage to bleed more, and cut lightly with a blade for those who would know more of Odhinn’s sacrifice. Great care should be taken that the cuts do not get infected, as that would be a poor omen. There should be silence until Hesperis, and then release from silence, as the time of Beltane will begin.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

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Calendar of the Sun for Sunday, April 29

Calendar of the Sun
29 Eostremonath

Walpurgisnacht Day VII

Color: Dark Blue
Element: Water
Altar: Upon a cloth of dark blue place a great vessel of water like a well, with stones and other sacred things at the bottom, two figures of ravens, the runes Nyth and Laguz, and seven candles.
Offerings: Each member present should have a coin to throw into the well, which will be added to a charity fund.
Daily Meal: Cold raw food. Only spring or well water to drink all day until Hesperis.

Walpurgisnacht Invocation VII

Behold the Well of Mimir!
Here lies the severed head of the god of wisdom
Who would not speak what he knew,
And here great Odhinn, much lessened by his travels,
Came to seek out Mimir’s wisdom.
He saw the severed head floating deep into the well,
And he asked Mimir to tell him all he knew,
The secrets of the underground,
The things unseen beneath the earth,
Beneath the surface thoughts of men,
Beneath his own surface.
And Mimir laughed, and asked what price
Great Odhinn would pay for this knowledge.
And Odhinn said that he would pay any price.
So Mimir asked for the price of one of his eyes,
That he who was trapped in the well
Might have vision in the upper world.
And Odhinn agreed, and gave one of his eyes
To Mimir in exchange for wisdom,
Although the bargain was hard, and painful.
Half-blind, he continued on his way,
But two ravens settled on his shoulders,
The gift of Mimir and the Norns,
Named Huginn and Muninn, Thought and Memory,
That he might have more eyes in the world
Who would tell him all that they saw.
And we honor Odhinn for his fourth sacrifice,
The giving up of worldly vision for greater sight.
(All shall approach the well, and throw in their coin, and look, and say nothing about what they have seen. Divination can be done on this day, if there are any with the skill.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]

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Poppy Seed Divination (Seed Moon)

Poppy Seed Divination

(Seed Moon)

Use this divination to answer a pressing question.

You will need a charcoal block, an incense burner, and nine poppy seeds. Because fire played such an intricate part in their daily lives, the people of ancient cultures commonly used smoke as a method of divination. One of the Norns, the Norse Goddess Verdandi, weaves the fabric that becomes each of our lives. This spell asks for the help of the Goddess in divining the smoke that rises up from smoldering poppy seeds.

Use your athame to draw a circle of light. Call in the elements. Carefully light the charcoal block, and invite the Goddess into your circle.

Great Goddess Verdandi

Weaver of all patterns

Help me to see

What is and will be,

So be it! Blessed be!

Ask the question you want answered, then blow on the charcoal. When it burns hot, place the poppy seeds on the lit charcoal and watch the smoke as it rises. Traditionally, if the smoke rose lightly and straight upward, it meant something good was going to happen, and if it hung around it was a portent of something bad. For yourself, try clearing your mind of all images before looking into the smoke. As you look into the smoke, let the image of the Goddess move into your consciousness. The smoke is a reflection of the fabric she is weaving. Look and see the patterns of your own life as it unfolds from the future into the present.

Thank the Goddess and pull up the circle when you are done.

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Calendar of the Sun for March 12th

Calendar of the Sun
12 Hrethemonath

Blot to Odhinn All-Father

Color: Dark blue
Element: Air
Altar: On a cloth of dark blue place a horn of mead, an evergreen branch, and a set of runes laid out in concentric circles.
Offerings: Mead. Do something in a leadership position, especially if it is difficult.
Daily Meal: Bread. Cheese. Goat milk. Meat. Mead.

Invocation to Odhinn All-Father

Hail Odhinn, Lord of Asgard,
Warrior and wanderer, valiant and wise,
You to whom all the gods of Asgard look,
Sky Father on the eight-legged steed,
You who traded an eye for wisdom
And ruled a turbulent realm,
Give us the wisdom to accept
The twists and turns of Fate
Even as you surrendered yourself
To the mercies of the Norns.
Protect us, All-Father,
From what harm may come to us.
Lead us through the wilderness
And bring us safely to that great hall
That you reserve only for the brave of spirit.

(Each comes forward and is purified with the evergreen branch. They choose a rune with their eyes closed, and one who is studied in such things tells them the meaning of the rune that they have selected. Then the mead is passed around in a toast, and the rest poured out in a libation to Odhinn.)

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