Herjan, HOLY NATION OF ODIN, INC.
and SONS OF ODIN, 1519 - VINLAND / USA
When considering where to begin, my mind traces the very silhouettes of the old stand bys; Blótar, Runes, Sumbels, etc., etc.. While these components are indeed essential to the traditional practices of our ancient faith of Asatrú/Odinism/Wotanism, as we have come to know it through the spiritual Re-awakening of our Gods and faith, so much has already been committed to print by so many accomplished writers. And so, I shall not rehash any of it. Well, at least, not at this time. I will venture to presume that those whom peruse the contents herein will be familiar, to one degree, or another, with the basic essentials of our faith. So then, where shall I begin? How about with Family! For this Júl/Yule tide season and it certainly holds great importance wherefore the scheme of family is in regard.
It should be painfully obvious to even the simplest mind, just how significant the family unit is to the survival, growth and advancement of our faith and our folk. For most, the Júl tide is the opportunity to gather with family. The season has remained virtually unchanged in that respect, over the span of the past millennia, albeit, what families do with the time they send in each other’s company has changed in a multiple of ways. So many families will get together this Júl and argue over trivial and unimportant issues. Just as they have the previous years in which they have gathered. This is opposed to capitalizing upon the gift and opportunity which they have been afforded. Not only is this selfish, it is disrespectful to both the living family as well as the family’s ancestors!
We so oft take it for granted that we will be afforded another opportunity later in time to right the wrongs which occur with our loved ones. All too oft failing to realize that life does not occur on our schedule, or by the rules and dictates of our personal desires. Death arrives uninvited and he claims the lives of our loved ones without consent, or consideration to the circumstances surrounding our lives, or the many things we have yet to resolve in our lives wherefore our personal family relationships are concerned. What if the Gods gathered you up to them right this instance? Have you the peace of mind in knowing that you have done all that you can to have your Wyrd and Ørlog in order and all worked out? Don’t answer that right away.
Our ancestors have left us many gifts, not least among them, the ability to learn from their errors and to apply that knowledge in an effort to avoid repeating the same errors in judgment. Our Sagas are ripe with examples of what occurs when the family unit breaks down. The Clan/Kindred unit suffers the same tragedy. Although, the greatest tragedy is that in the past, this has led to complete dissolution of the Tribe(s) and that nearly cost us today the sacred faith of our fathers! By the grace of the Gods themselves, a few folk were blessed with the fortitude and persistence to keep our holy ways alive when great family breakdown occurred, a millennium ago. And it could happen again!
Today, so many families suffer the effects of the dysfunctional family unit to a greater or lesser degree. Sad but true. And so many would seek to avoid this uncomfortable truth as opposed to embracing the reality and working together to resolve that which plagues them.
People say hurtful things to one another, or they do less to fester until they no longer speak to one another for many years, if ever again at all. The ancestors would not smile on such base behavior! For in their days of yore, when the family unit existed in a state of disharmony it meant the fields did not get worked the way they should and the harvest thereafter suffered and failed to yield its full potential. But this was by no means the sum effect of a family’s disharmony, nor is refusing to speak to one another today the sum of ill behavior towards one another.
So then, here we are - another Júl/Yule tide season. It’s another opportunity to set things right with the family unit in an effort to restore harmony, strength and unity to the family and the Clan/Kindred and Tribe, thereafter. Ultimately, the fold and our beloved faith can only prosper as a direct result.
If you are out there in the free world, take this season as the opportunity for which it is. Get together with family and enjoy each others company as opposed to arguing over trivial matters when the liqueur starts to flow. Seek to edify one another rather than belittling each other.
And no matter where you are when your eyes rest their gaze upon these words, if there exists unrest and discord in your own family’s harmony, take this opportunity to right rift between yourself and your loved one(s). Reach out to them in an honest effort to secure a peaceful resolve to gap the chasm between you. And do not get angry if they fail to capitalize on the opportunity, or your own effort to move forward. You cannot control another’s animosity or their lack of desire to restore frith (harmony & peace) between you. But you can take solace in the knowledge that you did your part to restore the balance.
There are so many among our folk whom will suffer the absence of a cherished family member this Júl/Yule, prison, war, perhaps the recent passing of a loved one. Whatever the case may be, don’t let anger and harsh words be the reason why you don’t see, or speak to your loved one(s) this Júl/Yule, for it is unnatural! No other animal in nature acts in such a base manner! The very cornerstone of our faith is family.
I direct your attention to the AEsirian Code of Nine: 1) The Code is Honor: Honor your family and friends with reverence and respect. Honor is the mark of strength and nobility. 2) The Code is to Protect: Protect with savagery your blood and Kin. Protection is the mark of a warrior spirit. And from the Noble Nine, Kinship is better than alienation. From the Nine charges: 5) To suffer no evil to go un-remedied and to fight against the enemies of Faith, Folk and Family. And from the Nine Noble Virtues of the Temple of Wotan: Loyalty-Without loyalty to family, faith and folk we are nothing and can achieve nothing. Courage-Be courageous in defense of your family, faith and folk! Generosity-Be generous with tolerance, assistance and sharing of knowledge and wisdom within your family, faith and folk.
Let’s take a closer look at these virtues:
Honor your family with reverence and respect! This means parents, BE parents to your children. Siring, or giving birth to a child does not render you a parent, per se. Sure, it makes you a biological parent albeit there is much more to good parenting than any biological title may confer. It requires a commitment to rear that child and provide without fail for that child. It means being accountable for the children you bring into this world and remaining responsible for their welfare and healthy growth. Not passing them off on someone else to rear, or passing the buck when things get tough! Children, honor and respect your parents. Respect your elder kin and the sacrifices which your ancestors made so that you could receive the gift of life that you now enjoy. They are not just faceless family members that you never knew. They did their part to protect the family line so that you could one day do the same. Next time you think that your life is your own to do as you please, consider this; “You” would not be here today with out them first being and fighting to secure your right to be here today!
Husbands, honor your wives. Show her the respect she deserves. Worship her like the goddess that she is! Do not cheat on her! As the Mother Goddess, “Frigga” resides within all of our women, if you abuse and disrespect hem, you are abusing and disrespecting our Allmother Frigga!
Wives, honor your husbands. Do not belittle, or demean his manhood when he’s down. Do not spit on him when he’s low. Do not cheat on him with another. Lift him up with your love. Assure him that he has something worth fighting for in his wife (and children). The both of you must strive to honor and protect the very gift of love which Freya gave you and the gift of marriage and family with Frigga blessed you with. Strive to not take it asunder. Kinfolk, be Trú Kin to our Kin! Seek always to edify them and slow to belittle them. Seek not to break, or destroy the bonds which hold you fast as Kin, but rather, seek with vigor to always strengthen the Kinship between you.
These are but only the obvious and immediately apparent measures of virtue we may exercise, not only this Júl/Yule tide season, but everyday that we awake to journey forth upon Midgard. Let this be our will and our purpose towards the end of creating, securing and maintaining the healthy family unit. For when we achieve this we not only may achieve a return to a healthy folk community, complete with healthy Tribes once more. But, we too shall then achieve the will of Wotan/Odin and the will of both our Gods and ancestors. And that will only serve our descendants yet unborn by reinforcing prominence in the future.
May all of your Hammers strike Trú, and may our holy Gods bless your noble endeavors! (Perform traditional Blót to Patroness of family, Frigga)
Fara meth Gothanum, ok Góthan Júl!
I remain in service to the Temple of Wotan and the Gods and folk of the Holy Nation of Odin… Heil Allfather Odin!
* remember always my stalwart and noble Kin and Kith;
“A Community of honor will always attract the honorable. But a circus, well, a circus only attracts clowns and children.” -- Casper Odinson Crowell, Ph.D