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The #DoMagick Challenge Day 19

December 23, 2017 Leave a comment
Ehwaz

Ehwaz (Wikimedia Commons)

Today I did galdr with Ehwaz.

I cleansed myself with Sacred Fire, and settled into the work tonight.  I could feel the weight of not having done the work yesterday.  I worked a double on very little sleep and bedded down as soon as I got home.  I am glad I made the decision not to double up on days where I miss.  I just get back on the proverbial horse and ride again.  I found it hard to concentrate today.   To work against random images and distracting thoughts more breathwork got me through, combined with fully engaging in the galdr as I usually do, falling into the galdr, letting it drive out all else.

In the first round of galdr’s first part I was a horse, running.  Just experiencing running with hooves beneath me on a wide plain.  The next part I was a wolf running in forested plains.  Then, I was a horse yet again, but this time I had a rider.  None of these were disjointed from each other.  With the galdring of Ehwaz I just…experienced it as natural as breathing.

In the second round of galdr I was being ridden for a purpose.  A young man, about 13 years old, rode me with a leather bag around him.  We were delivering messages.  Then, in the second part of the round, I galdred and had a flood of images all related to messages and communication hit me at once.  Emails flashed across my eyes, IMs and texts, then words scrawled on a page and delivered between hands.  Codes slapped out on Morse devices and turned into light.  Acronyms and codes that required certain knowledge to read.  Seals and occult symbols, sigils, bindrunes, and so much more.  It was a flood of information.  Then, for a moment, I saw myself as I was, sitting on the ground with pillows beneath me, breathing deep with Ehwaz before me, floating above the candle flame, my eyes shut.  Then I fell into my deep breathing and everything was dark as I prepared for the next part of the round.  In the last part of this round, I galdred, and I heard a horse neighing, a plane overhead, and felt my feet tread the Earth.  I felt myself become an eagle and soar overhead.  Again, I became a horse carrying messages through different ages, wars especially prominent this time.  Hermod on Sleipnir at one point I saw in clarity.  When I returned to my body everything was dark.  I blinked a few times in the candlelight, and did deep breathing to get ready for the next round.

The last round of galdr repeated many of the images and sensations previous to this round, especially becoming a horse, an eagle, and a wolf.  In these forms I went to many places in the Nine Worlds.  I returned home safely.

I did my prayers of thanks to Rúnatýr and the Runevaettir.  I cleansed with the candle and prayed prayers of thanks to the Eldest Ancestor.  Now, for some sleep

Link to the Daily Ritual for the Challenge.

#DoMagick

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The #DoMagick Challenge Day 5

December 5, 2017 Leave a comment
Raido

Raiðo (Wikimedia Commons)

Today I did galdr with Raiðo.

As before, I smoked Großmutter Una to cleanse and prepare myself.  As before, I did the prayers to prepare and flowed into a good, clean whole self when I did.  Tonight it is both blustery and cold.  My mind wanders to the lands where the ancient Heathen Ancestors would have called home.

As I breathed in to prepare, three times, I felt a kind of needing to move in my legs.  Not from the cold; I actually feel far more comfortable at these colder temperatures than anything above 60°F.  A kind of wandering, or wanting to go to a place.

When I galdred Raiðo the first time, my tone was warm and loud.  I echoed across the countryside.  It’s one of the reasons I enjoy doing galdr outside: I can be quite loud without disturbing my neighbors.  As I galdred, the pipe held in my hands, there was the sensation of going somewhere, of having a destination and slowly getting there.

The cold seemed to press tighter as I smoked and breathed cleansing breaths between.  As I prepared to galdr I could feel, hear the march of feet around me.  Bracing against the cold and marching on.  Determination.  A war march.  I galdred and it seemed that I was marching alongside them, and who they were changed.  At times I heard leather soles and chain mail, others gear in webbing and the soft sound of boots on grass.

The next round of galdr my first came out guttural, fierce, and I felt the march quicken, the destination coming nearer, the steps quickening.  Excitement and anticipation as the gap is closed.  More, though: the destination that one has worked so hard, built up so many resources, done so much planning is in sight.  Relief, joy, fierce pride in having made it to where you need to be.  The next part of the round of galdr, and my voice came out high.  I felt called to turn my gaze up to Mani.  The carts of the heavens, the every-turning wheels that make night, day, that make the days and nights of all the Worlds, that blanket of darkness that is Nött, Nött’s gift, with all those burning stars and the Star People.  The last part of the last round was low, deep, the echoes of all the feet in the long journeys so many have taken that I could be here.  The Diaspora, the Migrations, the Journeys of countless Ancestors on countless feet on countless soils and here I am walking on my own.

It was then the cold got too much, and I felt I had to seek a new destination: warmth inside.  In the garage I cleansed and purified myself as I had the previous nights, thanking Rúnatýr and the Runevaettir for deepening our connection and our relationship.  As I cleaned out my pipe and came back to normal headspace, I thought about all the journeys that had gotten me here, and where I was planning on our family heading to next.  The wheels that take us here and there, and the work needed for us to move into the next stage of our life.

Link to the Daily Ritual for the Challenge.

#DoMagick

Dancing

April 26, 2016 5 comments

The road rushes past

My cigar glows in my hand

The rainvaettir come down, a billion upon billion rattling dancers

The road, the car, all full of the sound of Their feet

 

The road rushes past and I see it

The first lightning bolt of the season here

Arc through the sky, behind the clouds

A silhouetted dancer

Whose drumming partner pounds and the sky shakes

 

Tendrils of smoke out the window and up to you all

The Thunderbird People

The rainvaettir

The stormvaettir

The Jotuns of storms

The Spirit of Storms

Odin

Thor

 

I call to you and say your names as Midgard fills with stomps with billions of feet

As the skies split with the fury of dancers and beating of wings

As the wind shakes and the clouds let loose the crowds

As the drumming thunderers crash and clash

The Worlds are alive and here

The Worlds are alive and there

and I am thankful to bear witness

Thoughts on My Spirit-Horse Partner and Ehwaz

March 29, 2011 Leave a comment

When I first met my spirit-horse, the one who travels with me through my drum, or who allows me to ride him in spirit, I was intimidated.  I knew that many spiritual traditions had spiritual horses that took them where they needed to go, and that alone made me uneasy.  I didn’t want to ‘gib’ other traditions’ practices.  When Odin introduced us that quickly fell away.  I felt an instant connection to the spirit-horse (he has asked me not to write his name) and he all but swept me onto his back, and away we went.  He made it clear we were to work together as partners, that though I rode him and occasionally directed him, that I had to put my utter trust in him in kind.  It was, at first, quite intimidating.  Over time it has become easier.  Where I once mounted him with worry or low confidence, I now slide on and we go.  Drumming-wise, it only takes a few strums until I am ‘down‘ and we are gone.  It used to take me about fifteen minutes to half an hour to get that far down.  I have only ridden horses on trails in my adult life, so riding through the Worlds at a full gallop took some getting used to.  I can only imagine what the drumming sounded like, as ‘gone’ as I tend to be when that happens.

I’ve read a post by Kenaz Filan, Jalkr TempleKeeper, and Galina Krasskove on Ehwaz and horses today, and that is how I got the push to start this article.  In my own experience,  is the Rune of Fast Travel, a Journey Rune (usually short, though that depends on other Runes that may be around it), speed, virility, and natural grace and power.  My spirit-horse has me use it as a kind of signal, especially if I need to be away from a place quickly.  As a spirit, the Rune seems very horse-like to me, perhaps like a stallion or matriarch of a herd.  It’s a Rune that communicates leadership and confidence as much as it does swiftness, resilience, endurance, and power.

I’d certainly say that my spirit-horse partner has these same qualities, but he has a kind of gentleness or patience about him that I don’t feel as much from the Rune.  I’m thankful for it; he had a timid partner at first, and I’m sure that was frustrating.  I’ve worked with him for almost a year now, and it is amazing to me how far we’ve come in trust, and how many places we’ve gone.  It’s  a powerful partnership, one I’m happy to have.  In his own way, my companion has pushed me to grow.  Before I accepted my work as a shaman, I was very-much a “go-it-alone I need no help” kind of magician; I was very used to just making my own way.  I’ve had to unlearn a lot of that, and see that while I poured on the armor, spiritually speaking, it was a tremendous waste of energy.  If I just trusted my Gods to have my back, or a spiritual friend, I would not have had to be as keyed-up anywhere near as much, and could have focused on the work I needed to.

I wasted a lot of energy watching my butt and doing continuous cleansing work; some of it was needed for the work I did then.  Most of it was because I didn’t ask for Anubis’ help, nor did I ask for a ridealong partner from any of the totem animals I knew, or spirits I worked with.  I didn’t want to inconvenience, but I also did not want to trust that deep.  I liked the working relationship Anubis and I had, as well as the genial brotherhood relationship, but I took care of my own stuff and that was it.  When Anubis eventually pushed me on to work with Odin (I had it in my head I would be working with the Egyptians the rest of my life), I was taken entirely outside of my comfort zones.  I was placed into a magical and spiritual practice where spiritual alliances, such as with my spirit-horse partner, were part of my path and comprised close bonds where trust was paramount.  Where I had once trust my Gods to watch my back for big things, I now entrusted my Gods with the little things.  I once thought my Gods were too big to care about my problems, big or small to me; it turns out most of Them (though some do have that attitude) just wanted me to trust Them enough to let Them into my life.  The same with my spiritual companions.  My spirit-horse companion follows me most anywhere, and my Gods speak with me on a regular basis.  For me, it was allowing that connection to be, whether at first between Odin and myself, or later with my spirit-horse companion and I, that was the challenge.  It was a lot of working through self-doubt, and especially self-esteem issues (i.e. “My Gods have better things to do than listen to me”, or “I don’t want to be an inconvenience to my spirit allies”), something that  has taken dedicated work and opening to the Gods and spirits that I didn’t do four years ago.

In becoming a Northern Tradition shaman, I have realized that, at least in my path and work, this opening is necessary.  Without it the Gods can’t use my body for communicating with people, spirits can’t get their messages across through me, and the magic of the Runes I have come to know, both in knowing them through Hanging on Yggdrasil, and as spiritual beings, would be reduced.  If I were not spiritually open, I would still be seeing the Runes merely as tools.  A large part of my life that I now lead would be shut to me, and my journey as a shaman would have gone nowhere.  That’s what Ehwaz also speaks to me: trust, implacable trust.  If I do not trust my spirit-horse, I could drum for hours and go nowhere.  If I do not trust my Gods, all the prayers in the world will not matter if I give Them nothing to work with.  If I do not trust my friends and family, how can I say I love them?  Inviting spirits and the Gods into my body requires a large deal of trust.  I have to at least trust that Odin, being my patron, will have my back if the spirit or God/dess begins to do something foolish, illegal or immoral.  I have to trust myself, that I can and will go down far enough for the spirit or God/dess to use my body, and trust that my assistants will support me.  I have to trust that when I mount my spirit-horse, that we work together as one, trusting him to carry me where we need to go.  This has taken healing, but it is healing I sorely needed.  So in a way, becoming a shaman and following this path has healed my heart, psyche, and soul.  It has helped to put me into a better place.  Perhaps they were broken so I could come to this path and find that healing.  Either way, I am here.  The growth has been slow, but very-much worth it.

I should have the entry where Odin introduced us up soon.

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