Friday, March 29, 2013


Weather is the state of the atmosphere, to the degree that it is hot or cold, wet or dry, calm or stormy, clear or cloudy.  On Earth, common weather phenomena include wind, cloud, rain, snow, fog and dust storms. Less common events include natural disasters such as tornadoes, hurricanes, typhoons and ice storms. 
Meteorologists use very sophisticated instruments for predicting the weather.  But since they often get it wrong, many may prefer traditional customs of forecasting the weather from colors in the sky or the behavior of animals.  We all have looked up at the sky for a sense of what the weather will be. 

Weather lore is the body of informal folklore related to the prediction of the weather.  It has been a human desire for millennia to make accurate weather predictions. Oral and written history is full of rhymes, anecdotes, and adages meant to guide the uncertain in determining whether the next day will bring fair or foul weather. 

The ancient people of the Norse had close ties with the Earth and it’s seasons. Their lives circled around the seasons as much as the seasons circle around the year.  The changing seasons affected not only the weather, but the day to day survival of the Norse, dictating what they ate, where they lived and how they lived.  The ancient people’s very existence depended upon adapting to change and living by the seasonal cycles.

One of the defining traits of Neo-Pagan religions is an awareness of the forces of nature.  Among the many powers attributed to witches is the fantastic ability to summon storms, stir winds, and call forth any manner of precipitation as well as to withhold life giving waters to blight crops, and to destroy homes and villages with mighty winds and torrents of rain.

"When halo rings the moon or sun, rain's approaching on the run."  A halo around the sun or moon is caused by the refraction of that body's light by ice crystals at high altitude. Such high-level moisture is a precursor to moisture moving in at increasingly lower levels, and is a good indicator that an active weather system is on its way.
"When cows lie in a field, a good rain this will yield."

"Red sky in the morning, sailors take warning.  Red sky at night, sailor's delight."  A red sunset probably means dry weather the next day.

"When the wind is in the north, the skillful fisher goes not forth.  When the wind is in the east, it is good for neither man nor beast.  When the wind is in the south, it blows your bait into a fish's mouth.  When the wind is in the west, then the weather is at its best."


Will there be rain to make crops grow or will there be fair weather for safe fishing?  Or for urban pagans, will there be rain to carry an umbrella or sunshine to be on the beach.  When the signs weren't favorable, people developed rituals (weather magic) to help turn the odds in their favor.

"Burn the picture of a deformed or otherwise ugly person and the heavens will cry for them out of pity." Or "Dip a broom in salted water and flick it to the four directions to bring rain."

Among Native Americans, the Rain Dance is a ceremony performed to bring rain and ensure the crops.
"Tying up winds in a rope or string and slowly untying the knots to release the winds."  These types of ropes were often sold to sailors in the Middle Ages.

"Goddess Sunna bless and decree that the sun shall shine on me."  Repeat nine times while holding a sunstone or other sun powered crystal.  Do this every morning leading up to your holiday or event that you want sunshine for.


Hagalaz h is the rune that tells you to pay attention. Challenges are occurring in your life, but these are to be embraced rather than feared.  A hailstorm, for example, may seem daunting and scary at first, but if you catch a hailstone you will realize that it is only water and is not to be feared.


Sowulo s rune represents the power of the Sun.  In almost every religion in the world, the Sun is held most sacred.  To the Norse, the sun was known as Sunna or Sol and was considered feminine.  The sun’s light and warmth symbolizes life, nurturing, growth and all that is good.


Isaz i rune represents being frozen in time or place.  In Ancient times, ice was a constant factor in the day to day lives of the Norse. It threatened their crops, their ships and their livelihoods, almost throughout the entire year.  To the people though, it also served as a symbol of creation from which all life eventually springs forth.

Freyr is a Norse God of weather and fertility; brother of Freya. The dwarves build Freyr a ship, Skidbladnir, that can hold all the Gods or fit in his pocket. Freyr goes as a hostage to the Aesir, along with Njord and Freya. He courts the giantess Gerd through his servant Skirnir. 


Even a good life has its days.
As a hard rain good for the crops
turns to a hail storm that flattens them.
Even then the bad times don't last;
even the thickest hail
melts away.


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