Sunday, May 22, 2016


Idunna (Iduna, Ostara, Idunn, Austrôn), of the Aesir: The Goddess of immortality, youth and beauty.  She is the Goddess of the spring, eternal youth and the keeper of the golden apples and granter of eternal youthfulness.  Idunn is married to Bragi, the God of poetry and is the oldest known of the God Ivaldi's younger children.  She has a chapter in the book, 'Who are your Divine Friends?', in Lulu Publishing. 
Idunn is the custodian of the golden apples which allowed the Aesir gods to maintain their youthfulness, and was the only one among the Gods who was allowed to gather them, which she safely kept in a golden chest.  Since the Norse Gods are not immortal, the apples are regarded very precious.
There is an old expression that 'an apple a day, keeps the doctor away'.  Apples appear in many religious traditions, often as a mystical or forbidden fruit.  In Norse mythology, the Goddess Idunn is portrayed as providing golden apples to the Gods that give them eternal youthfulness.  The Goddess Frigg sent King Rerir an apple after he prays to Odin for a child.  Frigg's messenger (in the guise of a crow) drops the apple in his lap as he sits atop a mound.  Rerir's wife's consumption of the apple results in a pregnancy and the birth of their son - the hero Volsung.  Buckets of apples were found in the Oseberg ship burial site in Norway and had been found in the early graves of the Germanic peoples in England and elsewhere on the continent of Europe.
Altar: outside upon cloth place a bowl of apples in different colors, a horn of mead, a polished stone, a bowl of nuts, and many gardening tools such as hoes and spades
Color: green, gold
Day: Monday
Incense: apple blossom
Offerings: concentrate entirely on gardening one day, even in inclement weather
Plant: birch, fir, hawthorn, apple, rose, willow
Pronunciation: 'Eye-dune-ah' (Idunna)
Rulership: beauty, long life, responsibility, youth
Runes: Ehwaz, Othala
Stone: copper, crystal, quartz, smoky topaz
Symbol: golden apple, youth, earth
Wheel of Year: Spring Equinox
The Fruit of Idhun

Barefoot on dewed grass in her secret orchard,
Shining like gold in the Sun's early glow,
Carries her cargo to halls of the mighty,
Feeds the fire-apples to ward off the snow.

Who gains from her gift? Just the gods of the north lands?
Just those whom she chooses, or those in her care?
All gain when they touch those whose breath she rekindles -
The spouse and the patron their energy share.

Casket of apples - full of her magic,
Each apple holding the seed of its son,
Every seed holding a new tree within it,
Every tree bearing the fruit of Idhun.
~ Stormerne Hunt-Anschütz
To Idunna

Holy fruit, in Asgard´s hearth hid,
Grows in Idunna´s girded garth:
In leafless trees life is renewed,
Silver blossoms star bare branches,
Golden the apples given to gods,
Sweet the fruit with its secret seeds.
In Midgard´s mirk, men wake from madness:
In fields a thousand years left fallow,
Sleeping seeds at last are sprouting-
Idunna, see the new day dawning,
Bear to us thy branch of blessings,
A tree of troth to bless the true.
~ Diana L. Paxson

A Prayer for Idunna
Idunna, Goddess of youth, and therefore life.
Gods' life tines tipped
toward past, present, then future
Because of all that you do
I praise you.
Idunna's apples. Wondrous and sought by all.
Age befalling the Gods,
as an eagle falling from fiery flight -
Loki, Asir, the Vanir, and a pyre.
I hail you, Idunna.
~ Todd Schirm
The Garden of Idunn
She hides her apples
 in a wooden box
sealed with magic.

She feeds them to those
 who have found
the elemental god within.

Feeds them to
trembling mouths.
Cuts a little piece
 from the apple of youth
places it in the craving mouth

And she walks her garden silently
 with the box
well hidden in her heart.

Waters the apple tree
 with tears of empathy.
~ Birgitta Jonsdottir   

Idunn´s Gift  

Age isn't a matter of body, but mind,
For years that bring wisdom, they also bring grief.
A child's day's eternal; an old mind will find
Every year flying faster, the days all too brief.

Age's felt and not counted, as Memory and Thought
Sit with heavier weight on your shoulders each day.
The blossoms have wilted, the autumn has brought
Bareness to branches, and leaves' decay.

But the apples remain, and in each golden orb
Is the sunshine of bliss and the sweetness of youth;
The joy and the zeal of your childhood, absorbed,
The taste of your springtime, untouched by time's tooth.

For this is my gift to Gods and to men:
I'm saving life's savour in fruit that makes whole.
An apple each day, I will grant you again
Not youth of the body, but youth of the soul.

~ Michaela Macha

Prayer for Idunna
We give thanks to the Goddess Idunna
for Her beauty, blessings, and inspiration.
We give thanks to Her for walking with us
Through the first stirrings of autumn.
Hail Idunna, Goddess of fruitfulness.
Hail Idunna, Goddess of regeneration.
Hail Idunna, Goddess of wholeness.
Hail, Idunna, Hail.
~ Galina Krasskova
She is appealed to for children, youth, health, beauty and innocence.  Honor her friendship by planting trees, especially fruit trees, or weed someone's garden.  Because of the events of Ragnarok, Idunn is believed to suffer the same fate that occur to the rest of the Asgardians.  Idunn's apples cannot stop death.
Today, Idunn has been the subject of a number of artistic depictions including Brita as Iduna, and Idun and the Apples.  Idunn Mons, a mountain on the planet Venus, is named after Idunn.  And the publication of the United States-based Germanic Neopagan group, The Troth, derives its name from that of the Goddess.


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