Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Blessed New Year


Next week, December 24, is Community Night - a Yuletide to unite with families, society, friends and yourself.  Or Christmas Eve if you go by the calendar, a natural time for people to gather and feast; usually regardless of race, color or creed.  Like all the eight high holidays, this day should ideally be spent not enclosed and isolated, but in common with the larger Pagan community.  This can be done a number of ways, including spending the day elsewhere, at the Yule ritual of another group or tradition, or by inviting in those Pagans who would otherwise not be able to attend a ritual.  Either way, the eight holidays should be a time of remembering the place of the house in the greater community.

There can be many challenges to walking this Path and many divisions in the road to choose, but there is a growing Pagan Community out there.  It's a New Year, where will your Path take you?  Below are some comments from Greywolf and how he walks as a Nordic Wiccan…

"I have highly valued this blog for sometime as a Nordic Wiccan and actually an Eckist Witch myself. I have never made a blog comment on this site until now but I suspect that I should have been commenting on this blog earlier. I am training as a first degree Wiccan in the Dorey tradition at Temple of the Ancient Ones in Jackson, Tennessee. I have been studying for clergy in the Dorey tradition and am taking first degree classes right now which includes doing a Sabbat report for every Sabbat during this current cycle of Sabbats and Wheel of the Year.

Since I am well known in my church to be a Nordic Wiccan I have been completing my Sabbat reports and Sabbat altars in the style of a Nordic Wiccan. I have also used some research material from this website in support of my Nordic Sabbat reports whereas I have been crediting your website in the references section of each Sabbat report I have been submitting for my first degree Wiccan studies. The point I am trying to make here is that your website is highly valued by me to be sure and I certainly do myself refer to it a lot as a Nordic Wiccan.

The more I learn about Wicca and all of its traditions the more I am impressed with the diversity of our faith and the dedication of its followers here in the South, in the US Northeast and obviously in the US Midwest where you are at, and no doubt everywhere else around the world as well.  If there are any other Nordic Wiccans out there that would like to talk with me I can be reached by email at martybilich@gmail.com. I am a great fan of anything very Pagan and Nordic and especially Wiccan and everything that is very witchy too as a very hard core Nordic Wiccan myself. Hurrah to all Nordic Wiccans in this World of ours! Stay strong, stay Nordic and stay Wiccan! Long live Odin, Thor, Tyr and Frigg, Freya and Skaldi and all of the rest of the wonderful Nordic Pantheon in Valhalla! Let us fly in the heavens with the Valkyries!

~~~

There really is a significant Nordic Pagan community here in North America and in Europe / Scandinavia too I would suppose that I have no doubt appreciates your blog here. I was also associated with the Order of the World Tree which belongs to the Assembly of the Sacred Wheel tradition in Northern New Jersey as overseen by HPS & HP Maggi and Craig Setti. They very much loved Odin and Freya as the respected God and the Goddess in that coven. I was also a long time associated with Bergen Wiccan Pagan Group in Northern New Jersey which is overseen by HPS Niki.

At the Temple of the Ancient Ones in Jackson Tennessee with HPS & HP Shari and Paul Yetto the Goddess and the God invoked in Circle are Inanna and Cernunnos however they respect all Wiccan Paths there to be sure. HP Paul Yetto is a Draconic Wiccan.  And HPS Shari Yetto (cmwwicca@yahoo.com) has a store Charlottes Mystical Web. I have also been associated with the Spiritual Path of Eckankar too since 1988 so I am not a pure Wiccan but neither am I a pure Eckist either - I am an Eckist Witch with a strong Neopagan bias which is no doubt a heresy but it is who I am. However my deepest passion has been for anything Nordic Wiccan in the end and I cannot rationally explain to you why this is - all I can say in the end is that is who and what I am.

Eckankar is a multi-leveled monotheistic spiritual path which recognizes teachings like reincarnation, karma, soul travel (as opposed to astral projection), spiritual exercises, the Eck (also known as the Holy Spirit in Christianity and also known as the Goddess in Wicca), HU chants (HU being the name of God on the 12th plane) and the Mahanta - which gives Eckankar a living master at all times and an inner guide on the inner planes however the main holy book in Eckankar which is the Shariyat-Ki-Sugmad always forbade the practice of magic which is a major component of a spiritual paths like Wicca and Ceremonial Magic (Thelema and the Golden Dawn, etc) as it was felt that the practice of magic was based on the mental plane of existence and 5th initiates in Eckankar were supposed to be above that and were to focus their spiritual life to the soul plane instead except that in 2012 I was then both an avid student of Wicca and an Eck High Initiate too but that wasn't going to last.

The Wiccan community is still a minority community in the US and in Europe and Nordic Wicca is a minority but significant community within Wicca so Nordic Wiccans are a minority within a minority. However there is a growing amount of support for anything old Nordic among a lot of Americans and Europeans nonetheless both within and outside the community of Wicca - Thor, Odin, Tyr and Freya, Valhalla and the Valkyries are popular in a lot of places actually and for good reason because they represent a honorable tradition of courage and valor that has to be respected by all.

I came from a family that was and still is very much Southern Baptist and it has been a struggle for me to try to communicate to them my love for Wicca in general. I can't rationally explain my love for Wicca and how it ties in to the Nordic culture and I really can't quite understand my love for these things myself though I suspect that I have lived a number of past lifetimes both as a Witch and in the Nordic culture in the past and those experiences have followed me to this lifetime as well. However I am here as your friend if there is anything where I can help you with that you may need help with I would see what I can do to help.

~~~

I actually do get a fair amount of community support from my own Pagan church that I attend in Jackson, TN which is the Temple of the Ancient Ones and I have over the past couple of years provided a lot of construction and service support to that church and to assist members of that church as well and I have been helped in return already.    I also have a second home in Conneautville, Pennsylvania which is about 15 miles from the Ohio state line.  Perhaps I can  make some time to come up and visit your Norse Wiccan Community Church in Ohio as I do need to go back and check on my home in Pennsylvania anyway. 

I knew that there were a number of Nordic pagans in America and that they even held a few major gatherings each year at least on the US East coast so there are certainly Nordic clans and gatherings in America but I have not been as familiar with them as I would like to be.   I am glad to hear that there is a Norse Wiccan Community Church somewhere and someplace. I am living in the middle of the Southern US Bible belt and I haven't heard of any such thing as a Norse Wiccan Community Church in the US South.  Where I am at any Wiccan and Pagan gathering place is relatively rare and hard to come by, esp. in West Tennessee between Memphis and Nashville. 

There are certainly Pagan groups in Memphis and Nashville but very few in between (Witchvox Tennessee page) and there are more pagans in East Tennessee as compared to West Tennessee. However there are certainly pagans in West Tennessee between Memphis and Nashville but they are less organized.  There is the Temple of the Ancient Ones in Jackson which I currently belong to and there is a more eclectic group called Circle of the Phoenix too and I had belonged to that group for a while too.  We also associate with other groups such as Apple Oak Grove in Sidonia TN which is north of Jackson and also with Memphis based groups such as Temple of the Sacred Gift and Summerland Grove Church and we also associate with Southern Delta Church of Wicca in Lake City Arkansas. 

There were also a few lesser known covens / private groups as well like Clan of the Fiery Oak (now disbanded I have heard) and there is another private coven in the Jackson TN area that is not so well known as well.  However the cultural phenomena for Wicca in the Southern US believe it or not is not so much coven organization (like in the Northern Eastern US) as it is Church level organizations which are much more common which I suspect was in response to being able to confront the large Christian community of churches here in the South.  Most of the Wiccan Churches in this part of the South where I am at actually belong to an umbrella organization known as the Aquarian Tabernacle Church (ATC) however Temple of the Ancient Ones (TAO, my church) and Summerland Grove (TAO's Pagan sister church) are independent of the ATC. 

Wicca in the Southern US is its own unique flavor of Wicca where you run more into stuff like Voodoo / Hoodoo (there is a Hoodoo church in Hopkinsville, Southern KY that I had attended once which was very nice), and draconic Wicca / magic and there is certainly this Southern flavor of Wicca which runs up and down the Mississippi River delta all the way down to New Orleans.  The old magic in the South is still powerful in its own right even though we have had to deal with the oppression of the Southern Bible Belt. 

The emphasis at my church are the Sumerian Gods and Goddesses and Draconic Wicca as that is the specialty of the HP Paul Yetto. He is probably as much an expert into Draconic Wicca and Magic as anyone else in the US and he has been writing a book on that topic and has been teaching Draconic style Wicca for a long time now and it is fascinating in its own right - this is a very serious discipline too however I have only been studying Dorey tradition Wicca and the associated Clergy studies that went with it as I knew that I did not have the time to make the serious commitment to Draconic Wicca that was required of that path.  HPS Shari is very demanding as a teacher and she says that her First Degrees and Seconds Degrees are not so easily earned and given out and they only are given after a whole lot of hard work and the effort to gain them in Dorey tradition is much more than in other traditions of Wicca. So it is in my witchy life. ~ Greywolf"

~~~

 

Norse Wicca is a small Pagan faith, often practiced by solitaries and small covens.  There is no set canon or creed.  They use Norse symbols and tales.  Nature is sacred.  The Eddas and Sagas are the texts they draw strength, wisdom, and inspiration.  There are Norse Wiccans focusing more on the Aesir, many on the Vanir, and some even on the Rokkr, depending on their personal preferences or inclinations.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_MOYA2WwtOq0/TR01Z_WgVQI/AAAAAAAACQg/Nj9ZPlwBzLA/s1600/newYearTroika1210.jpgThe Eddas, and especially the Havamal the alleged words of the All-Father Odin, regularly speak of retaliation towards one’s enemies.  As well as a high moral code of loyalty, honesty, truth, honor and defending yourself and your own, all while praising physical and mental strength.  War may be a common theme in the Eddas, but there are just as many Gods and Goddesses of a gentler nature. 

The Norse Ancestors lived a life full of harsh simplicity during the long, bitter winters and hard work on the farm.  Many men and women went in battles and travels for supplies, land, food, and resources.  They were also playful in enjoying games, contests, and competitions.  By the Viking Age, Norsemen regarded skiing as an efficient way to get around during battle and a popular form of recreation.  They even worshiped a God of skiing, Ullr.

Nordic Wicca is for Pagans on a North Path and is not a reconstruction religion.  The old Scandinavian Gods are full of traditions, culture, stories, myths and legends that guide individual paths, and help them live ethical and morally good lives.  Worshipping the Aesir and Vanir are beautiful in its rite with blots and hammering.  But doing it in a Wiccan circle or while celebrating the Wheel of the Year makes the whole adventure even better!

We stand before the Gods and Goddesses as an extended family; we never kneel or prostrate ourselves like slaves or servants but hold ourselves up proud and strong before the Divine Ancestors.  As long as you are willing to accept the consequences, do as you will.  Everyone is responsible for their actions.  It’s not a religion of hearing and preaching - it's a religion of doing; sing, feast, dance and love in a good life.

To the Ancient Norse, the World began with fire and ice, and would end in a grand cosmic disaster called Ragnarok.  But until then, I'd like to live in the here and now with my Divine Friends. 


Reflect on the past year.  Remember your Ancestors.  Take stock and lay a course for the future.  There are many ways to walk your Path.  Make New Year's resolutions in the old way by swearing your oath on Freya's boar or on your Hammer.  Thank You Greywolf for your time and research!  

 

Several Pagan Communities that will be gathering for Yule over the next few weeks and other general contacts:

Aotearoa Heathens - Auckland, New Zealand (December is Midsummer)

Assembly of Ancient Paths Church - Memphis, TN

Atlanta Heathens - Atlanta, GA

Avengaard - Athens, OH

Barbaren - Schelklingen, Germany

Berks County Asatru & Heathenry - Reading, PA

Children of the Wise Oak Community Coven - Mount Vernon, OH

Circle Sanctuary - Barneveld, WI

Gata Hof Kindred - Colorado Springs, CO

Heathenry in Ulster - Northern Ireland

Jardarmen Kindred - Montreal, QC, Canada

Nine Worlds American Kindred - Auburn, AL

Norse Wiccan Community Church - Our Lady of Wisdom Community Coven, Columbus OH

Northeast Ohio Norse Pagans - Tallmadge, OH

Rud Kindred - Marlton, NJ

Sagewood Hof - Flint, MI

Sigewif Kindred - Madison, WI

Temple of the Ancient Ones - Jackson, TN

Tribe Of Thor Kindred - Shinrone, Ireland

Wolf Tree Kindred - Laramie, WY

 

Have a Blessed New Year 2015!

Ha en velsignet nytt år 2015!

Ein gesegnetes Neues Jahr 2015!

W 2015 r. Błogosławiony nowy !

 

 

 









 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 comments:

  1. Silver, please have a very blessed Yule and a most wonderful New Year! May you preserver through the hard times and prosper and do very well in the good times. May the blessings of Odin, Thor and Freya and Vahallah ever be with you. Thank you so very much in all that you have done for representing our tribe as Nordic Wiccans. Yes, indeed our tribe is growing as you have shown above and will further prosper into the future.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank You Devilcorp and Greywolf!

    ReplyDelete