Odin’s Ordeal – Part 2

It’s now 14+ months after I fell on my head in a Norse ritual dedicated  to the Norns and received a rune and a head injury.
In this time, in addition to mostly healing my head, I birthed a lesbian country band that has recorded and is performing professionally, a novel  that had been gestating for 10 years, am making real progress in learning piano and have written three new songs. I also claimed myself as a ‘real’ musician, which had begun at that ritual so long ago.

One complication that came from my head injury was a worsening in a condition of low blood pressure I hadn’t taken note of before. About a year ago, three months into my recovery, I ended up in the emergency with sudden and persistent dizziness and elevated heart rate, something that could have been a life threatening heart condition. I am so grateful to live in Canada where the system took charge and did all the tests at no cost to me. At length, and after much fear and worry, they determined I had a low blood pressure condition (low blood pressure isn’t always a good thing). I was diagnosed by about March, and by December of last year, I had mostly figured out how to manage it successfully.

In the Six of Cups, a young boy leans down and passes a cup filled with flowers to a younger girl. The girl looks up to the boy with love and respect as he offers the flowers to her. Love, harmony and co-operation – all key elements of the Six of Cups – shine through this gentle act. The young children also represent childhood memories In the background, an older man walks away in the distance, as if to say you no longer need to worry about adult issues; just enjoy the moment of being young, innocent and free again. The children also appear to be standing in the courtyard of a large home, symbolising comfort, safety and security. In the foreground stand four more cups filled with flowers, and a fifth cup sits on a pedestal behind the boy.

It looks like one main thing I learned from my ordeal was that many things in my life I had thought of as character defects – my exhaustion after intense experiences, sleepiness after eating, mental confusion. spaciness, and forgetfullness – were actually symptoms of the serious head injury I’d had at 13, and the lifelong low blood pressure I’ve had. Now that I’m managing both things, I can really see how the things I do (or don’t do) have affects on all of those. Alcohol,  never a big deal for me, is now off the table, and sadly large servings of high carb foods are as well if I want to have any energy or mental clarity.

My band is the great joy of my life. I’ve never been so creatively satisfied.

I’m still always looking for signs I’ve lost some brain capacity – so far it seems like I’m good –  and make sure that I look after my most precious organ. I’m a bit nervous about money too, as I haven’t had much extra energy until now to work on getting more clients, while taking good care of my existing ones (I’m self employed as a web designer / project manager/ technical writer 20 years of experience if these are services you need) .

Although it’s clear Odin has claimed me in his way,  and I acknowledge that, I’ve been wary of Him. I don’t want to be that girl in the book or movie who meets the guy when he is mistreating her, and then falls for him ( no pun intended), discovering he’s really a great guy, just rough around the edges. That romantic line is just about conditioning women to put up with things we shouldn’t.  So I’ve been talking to him, and to my other matron and patron gods about it.

Most recently, what I’ve come to is that I have already survived my initiatory ordeal many years ago, and the most recent ordeal has integrated and recognized those learnings into a whole.  The powers I earned have been recognized in ceremony to help me claim them is all. A sacrifice of myself to myself to rejuvinate me, to a new understanding of who I am and what I am worth. Like the initial rune reading said, I have already done a great thing, worthy of honour, and the gods protect me.  I am not obligated to accept a continuous stream of ordeals.

What are these new powers?

I made a headdress at a women’s retreat recently. The direction was to make a crown celebrating an achievement. I decided that I didn’t want my worth to be tied to achievement any more, that I am worthy regardless of whether I am smart, successful or have a partner. I created a Crown of Worthiness.

The Empress - Rider Waite
The Empress is representative of the productivity of the subconscious, seeded by ideas. She is meant to be the embodiment of the growth of the natural world, fertility, and what one knows or believes from the heart.

 

It hit me today, as I read what I’d written in my first part of this story, that worthiness was one of the things I had set my intention for at that ritual so long ago. Embracing that worthiness, independently of achievements, is a great power. And I still do achieve – but in the things I want to, as a consequence of doing them for love.

Speaking of love, I did a spell. As a priestess of Aphrodite, I have done a lot of love spells for others, but not often one for myself. I cast for secure, embodied love. And the tests and learning that come when you cast that kind of spell have begun come to me, letting me know that it is working, has worked.  I continue to do what I am called to do. I will write of this too.

Odin’s Ordeal

The Hanged Man tarot card, drawn by Pamela Coleman Smith
The Hanged Man tarot card, drawn by Pamela Coleman Smith

Odin is one of the Norse Gods, a warrior king who becomes a magician through ordeal and personal sacrifice. I didn’t know very much about him before last October, when I attended Hecate’s Sickle pagan festival in the U.S..

Odin is the Allfather, not the Somefather

Except, I knew enough to spout off on facebook that he would smite Soldiers of Odin, a white supremacist group using Norse imagery, who had started chapters in Vancouver, where I live. I said things like Odin is the Allfather not the Somefather, and that as a Norse person (I have Norwegian heritage) and a lifelong Pagan, I oppose and resent the usage of my mythology and gods to promote hatred.

Someone was listening. And it probably wasn’t the white supremacists. Continue reading “Odin’s Ordeal”

Prosperity Magic – Part One – Cleansing

I’m known among my friends to be ‘good with money’ and also to have ‘freakishly good luck’ with money and work. I don’t know if that’s true, but I do have a strong intuiton for what works in prosperity magic.

One of the best ways I know to review and deepen what I know about a topic is to teach it to others. In the process of preparing to teach a class on prosperity magic in May, I’m reviewing what I know, adding practices and themes from others, and trying them out.

Types of Prosperity Magic

Most types of prosperity magic fall into a few main categories: cleansing, clearing, blessing, envisioning and creating focussing objects. They operate on the general magical principles of making oneself worthy to recieve good things, clearing out the unwanted to make space for the good to flow in, blessing what is already good so it will increase and inviting or summoning good things in. The following is the first in a series of posts about prosperity magic, beginning today with cleansing magic. Continue reading “Prosperity Magic – Part One – Cleansing”

Better Paganism Through Composting and Tree Planting

Is environmentalism part of Paganism? Part of Wicca?

Many Pagans believe strongly that environmental conservation is a necessary part of their devotion to the Goddess. However, if you go to Pagan festivals where there are many traditions represented you’ll find that others do not.

I was going to write this all not-judgy, and neutral, analysing the difference based on whether people believe in the Gods as literal beings or abstract concepts, or whether you are a religious Pagan who integrates your spirituality into your everyday life, a ceremonial magician interested primarily in energy workings and magick or a celebratory or ‘mead and cape’ Pagan. This is true, but in my opinion, not very interesting. Continue reading “Better Paganism Through Composting and Tree Planting”

Spring Mysteries Festival Review

Spring Mysteries Festival Poster 2018
Spring Mysteries Festival Poster 2018

Note: see end of post for recent update to this review.

I have attended the Spring Mysteries Festival, hosted by the Aquarian Tabernacle Church, many times. It’s really refreshing to be at a large complex multi-day ritual, that is so devotedly and competently done.

Some festivals are the land of the Party Pagan, whose main interest in festivals are in costumes and mead (1). While there are definitely attendees who fit this mold, this is a festival that isn’t shaped for that purpose, something that is a relief to me. Sometimes it feels like the more religious Pagans are few and hard to find. Based in this experience, the sincere dedication to ritual that deeply engages the gods and the participant, clearly and well executed in this festival is a joy. Continue reading “Spring Mysteries Festival Review”