Bragiteilen's Not-So-Private Journal, History, Culture & Worship, Relationships Between Gods and Mortals, The Gods, War Gods, Wisdom Gods, Worship

Mental Illness and the Real Benefits of Faith in the Gods

DOEPLERThor_und_die_Midgardsschlange
Thor und die Midgardsschlange, Emil Doepler

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Death Gods, History, Culture & Worship, Reference Sheets, Relationships Between the Gods, The Gods, War Gods, Wisdom Gods, Worship, Worship Practices

Óðinn/Odin: A Reference on the Norse God of Wisdom and War

Please note that this work is subject to updates and that the most recently updated version will always be the document in my google drive linked to on my Resources page. Please also note that you should not accept any of this at face value and always research any of the information I make available yourself. This is intended to be a simple reference and jumping-off point.

Odin and Gunlod by Emil Doepler
Odin bei Gunlod, Emil Doepler

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History, Culture & Worship, Relationships Between Gods and Mortals, The Gods, Worship

The Gods: Maybe Not Omnipresent, but Surely Not Limited by Time or Space Either

DoeplerDiviniation
Losungen, Emil Doepler

As far as I know, the term “godphone” came about as a reaction to the casual way in which many adherents to resurrected polytheistic religions talk about their communications with the gods. I can understand the reaction. It does take somewhat of a paradigm shift to go from purely secular thought to being able to swallow the idea of the gods in a modern setting, talking to living people now.

That said, I disagree with the idea that the casualness is silly, and that is because the Germanic and Norse gods, whether in folklore or the voice in my and other worshipers’ minds, are real-time experiences. They are hardly ever formal in folklore, even though the speaking style of people recorded long ago may make it seem that way, and in the same folklore, they are also wont to acting impulsively. The term “godphone” is based on the assumption that the gods are trapped in a time gone by, having not grown and changed with mortals, and are incapable of speaking to us in our modern dialects and as spontaneously as we speak to them.

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Adorations & Devotionals, Bragiteilen's Not-So-Private Journal, History, Culture & Worship, Worship, Worship Practices

My Formal Oath to Bragi

‘Bragi, I come before you on this spring evening, when the warmth beyond my window nearly mirrors the warmth in my heart. I come before you lucid and tranquil. I come before you without fear, and invite you to share a drink with me and take in the same Jasmine scent that I do now.

‘Skillful Bragi, discerning Bragi, Bragi of a most mindful presence; for every candle I have lit in your honor, you have reflected its light back to me a hundred times. For every meal shared, for every prayer offered, for every pile of incense ashes I’ve collected for you, you have let me taste sweeter things, let me hear lovelier words, and let me breathe more heady fumes. Word-weaver and music maker, dweller in libraries and auditoriums alike: you have hastened my learning and bolstered my happiness, and therefore you have also given me precious moments in which to chase even greater knowledge and pleasure. That is a debt which I cannot hope to fully repay, so I will give you the next best thing. Please hear me now as I offer you the greatest gift I have to give.

‘Bragi my mentor, Bragi my friend: from this moment on, my body will be your temple, my hands shall manifest your will. My soul is a garden that grows many fruits for you to eat, a brimming cup from which you can drink, and a bed upon which you can rest. Give me a portion of your time, and partake of what little is mine. If by giving myself to you I can shorten the distance between us, then I do it gladly. Hear this, Bragi, my declaration: what is mine is now also yours, and so shall it be until the day when, by my own death or by your goodbye, I have fulfilled my oath.’

Bragiteilen Oath to Bragi

I finally made my formal oath to Bragi tonight, and completely by accident, I chose the best time for it. I sat on the porch where the incense would be out of the wind and stay lit, and I recited my oath from the sheet of paper I’d printed out, and after that it started to drizzle, and then it started storming. I sat counting the thunderclaps after each lightning strike, and I didn’t feel any different.

Five, six, ten, five, four, five, six, five, ten, and three.

There was no sudden overwhelming sense of duty and there was no regret. It was just me, Bragi, some incense and a cup of water, and Þórr off in the not-at-all-distant sky riding his chariot, first one mile away, then a bit further, then two miles away, then one again, and less than that, and then one and more, and one and two, and then the last lightning strike that touched down near my house before I went inside was just a little more than half a mile away.

I’ve been living as if I was already oathed to Bragi, and in a sort of roundabout way, I may actually have been. I took his name, and there are a lot of people who would say that doing that was as good as making a formal oath, but I wasn’t sure. I knew that I wanted to do it more formally anyway.

I feel calm, with a pleasant buzzing inside my head shaking apart any thoughts that aren’t easy to think. I feel warm and loved. Overall, this went exactly as I hoped it would.

© Alixander F. D. Bragiteilen and Bragiteilen.com, 2018. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Alixander F. D. Bragiteilen and Bragiteilen.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Adorations & Devotionals, History, Culture & Worship, Worship

Adorations for Dellingr of the Lakeside Breeze

When in the spring I began to walk, I encountered you, O Dellingr;
You, who was quiet, and tranquil, and who lifted the sun just above the lake
That sparkled with your light’s reflection. O Dellingr! I met you in the spring
And parted with you in the winter cold, and oh how I’ve missed you…!
I have longed to meet you again at the lakeside where I sat
And was soothed by the birdsong
And looked upon the shining waters
And became enraptured by the love I felt in my own heart
Before you gave Dagr his reins and sent him to his mother.
O gentle god, O light reborn, O third lover and day-maker,
Will you sit with me again?
Here at the lakeside,
Will you fill my lungs with “I love you”s
And caress my cheek with your most calming breeze?
O dayspring, O Dellingr, please enchant me here,
And over and over,
And when I fall from the sight of this world, let me fall upon a lakeside knoll
And sit with you again.

© Alixander F. D. Bragiteilen and Bragiteilen.com, 2018. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Alixander F. D. Bragiteilen and Bragiteilen.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Adorations & Devotionals, History, Culture & Worship, Worship

Adorations for Þórr/Thor of the Earth

When the Earth made you, she flecked your skin with seeds,
Tossing handfuls of black soil all across your shoulders
And sowing in your body the strength to thrive.
Your hair grew like man’s first fire,
Red and thrashing like a fish in the sea,
The sea where, now and then, your mother feeds you the flesh
Of the scorched men whose ships fear your fanned red skies
And find their burial mounds in the deepest sands
under the flash of your light;
Men who feel your firm black soil again at the doors of your hall
And make themselves full with food and drink
And Hellos to friends so long and fervently missed.

© Alixander F. D. Bragiteilen and Bragiteilen.com, 2018. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Alixander F. D. Bragiteilen and Bragiteilen.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Bragiteilen's Galdrbook, Historical Magic

Defining Galdr (Bragiteilen’s Galdrbook)

Please note that this post is subject to change as I learn more about galdr, and the version you read now might not be the version that will be available later. I am posting this quite tentatively because it is undoubtedly unfinished, but all the same, I promised to post new articles on galdr/runic divination semi-regularly, so here we are, and here this is.


So what is galdr?

Odin_og_Völven_by_Frølich
Odin and the Völva, Lorenz Frølich

To put it simply, galdr is the Old Norse word for poems that were possibly, but not for certain, composed in the meter of Galdralag (lit. “meter of magic spells”), and the chanting of these poems was typically accompanied by an action or elaborate ritual meant to bring about a certain effect, like creating a storm, inflicting madness upon a person, causing coins to spontaneously appear in the skinned remains of a dead man’s scrotum (no, that’s not a joke), or making the process of childbirth smoother. Ceremonies involving galdr were performed by vǫlur (singular “vǫlva”).

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History, Culture & Worship, Worship, Worship Practices

Prayers Don’t Need to Be Overly Specific

I wanted to say this just because it was on my mind for a bit today:

If you’re like me and have a tendency to over-specify what you’re asking for in prayers to the gods out of fear of repercussions that might stem from unspecificity*, know this:

The gods are wise. They are very wise, and they can tell what it is you’re asking for even if you don’t specify the extraneous minutia of everything. If you have their favor, you will receive it. If they are determined to cause you to suffer or to twist your words to excuse such a thing, they will find a way to do just that. All you can do is offer your prayer, and with everything I just said being true, it is better to focus on whether or not your prayer is heartfelt rather than whether or not it is specific enough for a trickster robot genie to understand.

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