Beltane/Walpurgis/May Day

As I have mentioned in previous posts I am a co-admin for my local Pagan community group and with that I have helped create some generalised information and ritual documents to help out those that may not be experienced or who may just need a little help with ideas on creating their own.

I have been given permission to share these mini essays.  I have found in helping create these little essays that I am also learning some valuable information that I would not normally have learnt had I not been given the role of co-admin.  For that I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to grow within myself and, like Odin, to gain knowledge from others.

“Gimme fuel, gimme fire, gimme that which I desire” ~ Metallica

May Day? But it’s October you say.  May Day comes from the celebration being held on 1st May in the Northern Hemisphere.  There are some in the Southern Hemisphere that refer to the celebration as November Day. 14101882_10153891743846395_1060310016_n

You may have seen all the references and pretties on the internet for Samhain/Halloween and that is because in the northern hemisphere they are in Autumn.  Beltane is a Spring festival.  November is the final month of spring and summer is creeping around the corner, although here in the tropics, we have already begun feeling the humidity rise (or was that just the heat from our recent Supermoon in Aries).  The days now will become more humid, the summer rains are nearly upon us, in the southern states daylight savings has commenced as has the dry and dusty heat.

Although the seasons are mirrored to those in the north, Beltane is still a highly charged, spiritual event.  The veil thins just as it does during Samhain with some saying that the thinning is even more prominent at this time.  This will be totally up to you whether you feel one is more spiritual than the other.

Winter has definitely left us by now and we have new life all around us.  Ostara brought with her the new buds and Beltane brings the lush full foliage of nature.  Where Samhain is focused around letting go of the past, death & crossing over, Beltane is about life, love, living & rebirth.  Siebog & Ziva (Slavic) are often honoured at this time during Handfasting festivals.  Handfasting is very popular this time of year as love & marriage are in the air, the Gods & Goddesses are doing it so why don’t we.  It is said that babies born from a Beltane union hold very special powers.  Although some prefer to keep May Day exclusively for the handfasting of the God & Goddess only, seeing it as a sacred act reserved for the sacred unions of Kings & Queens.

Beltane translates to ‘bright fire’ and fire is used not just as a celebration tool but as a sacred element in the May Day ritual.  Fire was honoured for its part in the survival of the darkest period of the year.  Sorry for those that thought Aries leaving was going to cool things down again.  Baelfires were lit with a wide walkway between them and cattle were herded through to cleanse them and bring good fortune for the coming seasons.

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Found on Pinterest

Jumping the fire (a small one obviously) is another one of the many ritual activities preformed during the festivities, as is CONSENSUAL sex.  Come on, love, marriage than consummating the marriage with sex.  Although plain simple courtship was also another celebrated rite of passage for those too young to marry.

Walpurgisnacht (German), Hexxennacht (Dutch) can be translated to Witch’s Night and was a celebration held atop a high mountain in Germany.  May Day is celebrated in a variety of countries, all with their own history behind the day (northern hemisphere).

The Warrior God, in his masculine form has now reached his sexual peak and is ready to become the father and spread his fertility across the lands.  The Goddess is now entering her Mother phase and together they spend this time frolicking happily until the seed is planted.  When two become one.

List of just some of the fertility/love Gods:

Freyr, Odin, Cernunnos, Siebog, Heryshaf, Min, Aramazd, Ba’al, Fufluns, Äkräs, Aphroditus, Dionysus, Eros, Phanes, Priapus (the Greeks apparently couldn’t get enough of the fertility gods), Phallic Saints, Lono, Chandra, Wollunqua, Gedi, Innus.

List of just some of the fertility/love Goddesses:

Asase Ya, Ala, Heget, Isis, Renenutet, Tawaret, Allāt, Anahit, Tanit, Sowathara, Brigid, Damara, Damona, Turan, Rauni, Nerthus, Freyja, Frigga, Sif, Sjöfn, Gefjon, Lofn, Parvati, Aphrodite, Artemis, Cybele, Demeter, Gaia, Hera, Anjea, Akna, Ceres, Feronia, Bona Dea, Juno, Terra, Venus.

I also came across a few Roman deities whose sole act is to consummate the marriage between the bride and groom.

  • Prema, goddess who holds the bride down on the bed
  • Subigus, the god who subdues the bride to the husband’s will
  • Pertuda, goddess who enables penetration
  • Domidicus, the god who leads the bride home
  • Domitius, the god who installs the bride
  • Jugatinus, the god who joins the pair in marriage
  • Virginiensis, the goddess who unties the girdle of the bride
  • Manturna, the goddess who kept the bride at home.

Ok, enough of the name dropping.  May Poles are a symbol of the Gods manhood and the flowers represent the Goddess. Apple and pear blossoms make great circlets for the young women to adorn their heads.  Flowers from the Hawthorn bush were hung about doorways and windows to ward off evil for the season.

Many Pagans, in ancient times, left votive offerings at pools, wells, fountains and springs.  Commune with the spirit that resides in the water, leave a coin or flower in exchange for some water.  You could also say something like:

“With grateful thanks I leave this gift;

For the Guardian of the Well (or spring etc),

For the water I have taken,

May it aid me in my sacred rite.”

N.B: I am sorry, but I found this a while ago and have no idea where, so I am unable to give credit to the author.

wattleHere, November is a month to enjoy blossoms, they are in abundance (my streets are lined with yellow wattle blossoms right now).  Escape to the cool rainforests that surround us and look out for some landwights, brownies or faeries.  Dance at every chance you can and celebrate the new life that is around you. Live, love and immerse yourself in the now. Remember that you will probably still feel the energy from the previous full moon in Aries and we have another supermoon in November.  Recharge as often as you can.  Spend time at a local creek, or at the beach, ground yourself in preparation for the coming months.

Disclaimers:

* Beltane is a Fire Festival and we live in Australia at a period when bushfires can occur.  Please be responsible in any fire use.

Remember that you are the Priestess/Priest/Gothi/Gythia of your own rituals.  You create them how YOU feel they should go.  There is no right or wrong way to follow YOUR path, only what feels right or not-so-right.  It is fun to gather together with a few other like-minded souls and recreate the tradition of the God & Goddess, but never do anything that you feel uncomfortable with.  Remember that it must always be CONSENSUAL and if you do engage in consensual sex, make sure you practice safe sex.

This will be my final write-up for the Pagan Spiral as I am relocating to Victoria in early January and will be unable to get Litha out for you.  Over the last 6 months, the admins, have ensured that each piece that we wrote contained as many references as possible, even some that we did not end up using.  I suggest that you go through the lists and research for your own history and ritual for Litha.  Your path is all about you growing and learning, so please do not hold yourself back.

Many blessings and much prosperity for the coming season.

SouthernCrossHeathen

References

  1. Seasonal Dance – Janice Broch & Veronica MacLer (1993)
  2. Wheel of the Year – Pauline Campanelli (1992)
  3. Rituals of Celebration – Jane Meredith (2013)
  4. Llewellyn’s Witches Spell-a-day Almanac (2017)
  5. Dancing the Sacred Wheel – Frances Billinghurst (2012)
  6. Moontime Diary 2016 – Iris Dentenhof (2016)
  7. Lunar and Seasonal Diary 2016 – Stacy DeMarco(2016)
  8. Spheres of Light – http://spheresoflight.com.au/
  9. Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/
  10. About Religion – http://paganwiccan.about.com/
  11. Coven Life – https://covenlife.co
  12. Rune Wisdom – https://runewisdom.wordpress.com
  13. Beltaine – http://earthdna.co.za/
  14. Circle Sanctuary – https://www.circlesanctuary.org/
  15. Nordic Wiccan – http://nordicwiccan.blogspot.com.au/
  16. Wicca – Scott Cunnigham (2004)
  17. Llewellyn’s Witches Datebook (2017)
  18. Living Wicca – Scott Cunnigham (2011)
  19. List of Fertility Deities – http://www.wow.com/wiki/Fertility_deity
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An Awakening of the Soul

With Walpurgis Night (Beltane) nearly upon us here in the Southern Hemisphere I am wondering how many others are feeling ‘different’.
Not different in a bad way but like there is fire within, like the veil has already began to slip away and we are now walking side by side with the other side.

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I know the Northern parts of the world are about to celebrate Samhain so they would be feeling this energy, or vibration too. I know within myself I have felt an awakening over the last month. My spirituality has taken a shift to a higher level.

 

 

Over the years I had let myself become stuck in society, I let bad relationships control and direct where my life went. I had forgotten who I was and what I was. I had also become a mother which I had forced myself to push my true self inside so deep that I thought I had lost me forever.

This last year has given me the strength and determination to bring myself back to the surface and well this new me is fucking awesome. I have never felt so alive before. I am learning to let go of the past that was holding me back, no not back, down.

spiritual-awakening-featured-01I had let myself become the victim of being the survivor. Pretended to be Superwoman when what I should have been is me.  Where is all of this new fire coming from? I have known for a long time but have, for no known reason, kept it hidden.

I moved house in February and that is when it all started, well it started Dec, but the fire started in February. It was an unusual heatwave right at the time I was moving (see… fire) and I started seeing strange things, yes, yes, I know now they were signs, and pretty damn obvious ones too, that I just kept blowing them off as other signs.

I have always been Thor’s girl, not in the God-spouse sense, more like he was always there when I needed him (or thought I needed him), like a big brother would be. Very platonic relationship, although he did ‘claim’ me a few times when I had attempted to wander to another deity.

Maybe that is why I had not considered another male trying to reach out to me.  Thor would have surely ‘claimed’ me again if that was the case right, right?

Skadi_by_Anna_NovikovaMaybe it was Skadi, I was yearning for the cold so badly, because there was so much fire in my life. Orange had become a favourite colour along side my ever trusty green. So I began researching her.

Elen of the Ways come through in my research after a dream of an Antlered Goddess within the forest. Deers and Stags were everywhere in my otherworldly life. There was a shift coming, you could feel it, my witchy friends had begun feeling it emanating from me for a while too.

Whilst on holiday (yes I will get to Day 2 soon I promise), I had a change cone over me so obvious, so strongly, so effortlessly, so… divinely… that I knew I needed to embrace what ever was coming. To just let it flow, from me and for me to just let myself flow with it. What ever it was…

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Supermoon In Aries

I found myself grounding a lot with

nature and water… so much water, I couldn’t get enough water it was ridiculous, not just physically but I needed to keep hydrated as I felt myself burning alive other wise. See… Fire… so much fire.

I had a few otherworldly experiences whilst away that I enjoyed and will keep to myself but I will share the most awakening experience, almost like a life epiphany experience.  I was at the beach on the way back home from our trip, it was my cousin, myself and our kids.  I was not going into the water, until I was sitting there and I felt a pull… I had to go and stand in the water… but I needed to bury my feet in the sand too… See water and grounding, always grounding.
I stood there, the waves (only small) washing back and forth around my legs… there was no more pull towards the ocean… only a desperate need for stillness… How the Hel are you meant to stand still in the waves? But I did, I was so still, so steadfast, I could see the water coming and going in slow motion, I could feel every single grain of sand surround my legs then whittle away as the waves returned to the deep once more. I could smell the salt in kawanabeachmy nose, I could feel the sticky salt air in my pores, I could feel the earth slowly rotating… What… Yes… the earth, Jord, Gaia, Mother… I could feel her, I was her, she was me.

I know it sounds absurd to those that are not spiritually connected to nature. But it happened, and it happened to me. It made me realise how small I am in the universe, yet how gigantically huge I am in the scheme of life. It was a true awakening, I fell in love all over again to my spirituality, to me, to life.

Then when I got home and relaxed, I could still feel the fire within, like a volcano, with its lava bubbling, just waiting to explode. Well the volcano did erupt. It erupted with such gusto that it felt like I have been reborn.

I was recouping after a great weekend catchup with one of my best friends, scrawling through Facebook when I came across a photo of a candle. (I am writing this on my mobile so will add links and photos later). It was a candle with an image of Freyr, standing in a forest with antlers on his head. There it was, there HE was, it was like a slap across the face… or arse in my case 😉 … This last 9 months has been about Freyr trying to connect, and with Thor’s permission obviously.

I needed to become a woman again, I needed to earn the fire within, I needed to earn the desire for life. Well I have, I have done the hard yards, and I have reached he pinnacle of my spiritual puberty to become the woman I am looking forward to releasing.

img_6297This does not mean I am letting go of my big brother, no, this just means my big brother has let go of my hand. He has shared my last teen dance with me and is now handing me over to the next stage of my spirituality. To experience life with new eyes and a new dedication to all that is.

This brings me back to the start of this post about the energy around us at the moment. There is a shift in the spiritual plane, an energy shift that has occurred. Is it just me or is it all?  Are you feeling the fire or are you feeling another vibration all together? Is it just this time of year or is there a shift happening, a stirring, a change, an otherworldly primal shift in the universe itself!

 

Let me know my fabulous crazies… or is it just me, going… well crazy?

Update: Spelling errors fixed.

Ingwaz.us was the supplier of the candle I saw:

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Calendar Confusion. I mean Conversion.

For those of us that live in the southern hemisphere, celebrating the seasons can be a very difficult experience, especially for those new to the path.  Winter is Summer, Autumn is Spring and it can all get very confusing.  Even more so for those that live in tropical, desert or polar climates that do not have the typical Summer-Autumn-Winter-Spring format.

Whilst most of you that are reading this blog (well I hope you are reading it), are about to embark on Autumn/Fall and getting ready to celebrate either Winter Finding or Mabon (whichever wheel you prefer) we down here in the southern part of the globe have just come into Spring.

Map-Southern-Hemisphere-2015
http://www.plantsgalore.com/plants/types/maps/00M-Map-Southern-Hemisphere.htm

So here is what most of you would see when looking at a Wheel of the Year.  These are northern hemisphere dates so will be very familiar to most of you.

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Wheel of the common holidays in “Pagan” spirituality. (Heathen Holidays)
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Wheel of the Year (Celtic Calendar)

Now here is the process that goes in to making them fit with the southern hemisphere seasons.

WorkInProgess

Which then becomes this:

Blot/Sabbat Southern Hemisphere Season Northern Hemisphere
Feast of Thunar July 20th – Aug 18th Winter Jan 20th – Feb 18th
Charming of the Plow Aug 2nd Spring Feb 2nd
Imbolc Aug 1st Spring Feb 1st
Vali Aug 14th Spring Feb 14th
Ostara Sept 19th – 21st Spring March 19th – 21st
Sumarsdag October Spring April
Yggdrasill Day October 22nd Spring April 22nd
Walpurginsnacht Nov 1st Summer May 1st
Beltane Oct 31st – Nov 1st Summer April 30th – May 1st
Midsummer Dec 20th – 21st Summer June 20st – 21st
Litha Dec 21st Summer June 21st
Lughnasadh/Lammas Feb 2nd Autumn August 2ndt
Frey Faxi Feb 28th Autumn August 28th
Winter Finding March 20th – 21st Autumn Sept 20th – 21st
Mabon March 21st Autumn Sept 20th
Winter Night’s April 30th – May 1st Autumn Oct 31st – Nov 1st
Samhain April 30th – May 1st Autumn Oct 31st – Nov 1st
Mother’s Night June 21st or 22nd Winter Dec 21st or 22nd
Yule June 21st Winter Dec 21st
Yule June 21st – July 2nd Winter Dec 21st – Jan 1st

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I am still in the process on trying to create a nice and aesthetically pleasing Southern Hemisphere Heathen Calendar but I do have a Southern Hemisphere Celtic Wheel.

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Found on Pinterest

There are a number of books and websites that I use to help with the conversion of these times and dates.

Dancing the Sacred Wheel – Frances Billinghurst (you can purchase this through either Kindle or Wordery)

Rituals of Celebration – Jane Meredith (Book Depository)

Spheres of LightFrances Billinghurst Blogarchaeoastronomy.comOut of the WinterAn Asatru BlogAsatru AlliancePagan Calendar, Asatru Holidays Wiki, Wheel of the Year Wiki, Odin’s Volk, Wizard Realm.

 

As mentioned in previous posts, I have been involved in researching and writing up some Celtic Wheel of the Year rituals and events for my local pagan community and so am currently focused on that, hence the table above.  I will hope to have something out by December 2016 ready for 2017.  So stay tuned for updates.

So for now my crazies I will leave you with the excitement of either Ostara (yay I love the colours of Spring but hate the pollen & hayfever), Mabon or Winter Finding.

Oh if you find an error or feel that something should be added or rearranged please leave me a comment.

 

Ostara

As I have mentioned in previous posts I am a co-admin for my local Pagan community group and with that I have helped create some generalised information and ritual documents to help out those that may not be experienced or who may just need a little help with ideas on creating their own.

I have been given permission to share these mini essays.  I have found in helping create these little essays that I am also learning some valuable information that I would not normally have learnt had I not been give the role of co-admin.  For that I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to grow within myself and, like Odin, to gain knowledge from others.

“Blooming and Blossoming”

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With the first day of September come the new moon in Virgo.  This is a great time to let go of your perfectionism and allow new ideas to flow inwards.  Set new goals, recharge and let go of your fears.  This is also the time when you begin to bring in all those amazing flowers that have started blooming and blossoming.  Brighten the home with the amazing Spring colours & scents, to get away from the dark moon with mercury in retrograde (again).

The hours of night and day will now equal at the equinox but the day after, the days will grow longer as the warmth and the light are returning to the earth day by day.  This is a beautiful time of joy and balance.  Set intentions for bodily and life balance.  The equinox is a good day for communication and business networking.  Improve your digestive system by drinking bitter teas.

Ostara is the vernal or spring equinox and is the first ‘real’ day of spring, although modern times have spring beginning at the very start of September, you will know within yourself when spring begins for you.  Here is the tropical north I have felt the shift already.

Ostara is more commonly known as Easter and popularly held in line with the Abrahamic Easter in the Northern Hemisphere.  The traditional name comes from the Germanic Goddess Eostre who is of course the Goddess of Spring and New Beginnings.  This is a time when other Spring & Fertility God/desses bless us with their presence.  It is a time of great promise and new growth.  Having made it through the harshness of Winter, you can now celebrate all the new that is around.  Even personal change within yourself will be noticeable around this time.

If seeking guidance, you can play a game of hide & seek with your friends using dyed boiled eggs.  Mark the eggs with runes or your choice of divinatory symbols and the dye them bright colours.  Hide them and ask the seekers to focus on their question whilst hunting.  Before eating the eggs you can then charge the symbols with bright spring energy and chant:

‘Eos, Eostre, Ostre, Eistar, Ostara’

Your home would appreciate a lovely spring clean during this period of celebration.  As the Goddess of new beginnings, Eostre encourages us to clear away the old to make way for the new coming into our lives.  So many opportunities and so much potential for great possibilities will come our way if we just make room for them.  With so much activity in the air, why not start a bee & butterfly friendly garden.

Whilst the Goddess blankets the earth with fertility the God stretches and grows to maturity.  At Ostara the hours of day and night are equal, the light will now take over the darkness and the God & Goddess will aid in the reproduction of the earth.

Adorn your altar with flowers (wild flowers if you can) and place them around your circle.  Fill the cauldron with spring water and flowers especially buds.  Young blooms can be added to your hair for decoration and a small potted plant can adorn your altar.

Dusk or dawn, when neither light nor dark, day or night is the best time to conduct your Osatra ritual.

Many Blessings and Much Prosperity for the coming spring season.

Admin

References

  1. Seasonal Dance – Janice Broch & Veronica MacLer (1993)
  2. Wheel of the Year – Pauline Campanelli (1992)
  3. Rituals of Celebration – Jane Meredith (2013)
  4. Llewellyn’s Witches Spell-a-day Almanac (2017)
  5. Dancing the Sacred Wheel – Frances Billinghurst (2012)
  6. Moontime Diary 2016 – Iris Dentenhof (2016)
  7. Lunar and Seasonal Diary 2016 – Stacy DeMarco(2016)
  8. Spheres of Light – http://spheresoflight.com.au/
  9. Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/
  10. About Religion – http://paganwiccan.about.com/
  11. Coven Life – https://covenlife.co
  12. Spring Musings – https://runewisdom.wordpress.com
  13. About Ostara – http://earthdna.co.za/
  14. Spring Equinox – https://www.circlesanctuary.org/
  15. Nordic Wiccan – http://nordicwiccan.blogspot.com.au/
  16. Wicca – Scott Cunningham (2004)
  17. Ostara – Thuri Calafia; Llewellyn’s Witches Datebook (2017)
  18. Living Wicca – Scott Cunningham (2011)

Rígsmál – The Lay of Rig

Rig_in_Great-grandfather's_Cottage
“Rig in Great-grandfather’s Cottage” (1908) by W.G. Collingwood [1]

People say in the old stories that one of the Æsir, who was called Heimdall, went on a journey, and as he went along the sea-shore somewhere he came to a household and he called himself Rig*.  This poem is about that story.

The Birth of Thrall

  1. Once walked, ’tis said, the green ways along,
    mighty and ancient, a god most glorious;
    strong and vigorous, striding, Rig.
  2. Ever on he went in the middle of the way,
    till he came to a house with door unclosed.
    He entered straight; there was fire on the floor
    and a hoary couple sitting by the hearth,
    Great-grandfather and mother in ancient guise.
  3. Well knew Rig how to give them counsel,
    he sat him down in the middle of the floor,
    with the home-folk twain upon either side.
  4. Great-grandmother fetched a coarse-baked loaf,
    all heavy and thick and crammed with husk:
    she bore it forth in the middle of the dish,
    with broth in a bowl, and laid the board.
  5. Thence Rig uprose, prepared to rest; —
    well he knew how to give them counsel —
    he laid him down in the middle of the bed
    and the home-folk twain upon either side.
    Thus he tarried three nights together,
    then on he strode in the middle of the road
    while thrice three moons were gliding by.
  6. Great-grandmother bore a swarthy boy;
    with water they sprinkled him, called him Thrall.
    Forthwith he grew and well he throve,
    bur tough were his hands with wrinkled skin,
    with knuckles knotty and fingers thick;
    his face was ugly, his back was humpy,
    his heels were long.
    Straightway ‘gan he to prove his strength,
    with bast a-binding loads a-making,
    he bore home faggots the livelong day.
  7. There came to the dwellings a wandering maid,
    with wayworn feet, and sunburned arms,
    with down-bent nose,- the Bond-maid named.
  8. She sat her down in the middle of the floor;
    beside her sat the son of the house:
    they chatted and whispered, their bed preparing —
    Thrall and Bond-maid — the long day through.
  9. Joyous lived they and reared their children.
    Thus they called them: Brawler, Cowherd,
    Boor and Horsefly, Lewd and Lustful,
    Stout and Stumpy, Sluggard, Swarthy,
    Lout and Leggy. They fashioned fences,
    they dunged the meadows, swine they herded,
    goats they tended and turf they dug.
  10. Daughters were there, — Loggy and Cloggy,
    Lumpy-leggy, and Eagle-nose,
    Whiner, Bondwoman, Oaken-peggy,
    Tatter-coat and the Crane-shanked maid.
    Thence are come the generations of thralls.

The Birth of Churl

  1. Ever on went Rig the straight roads along
    till he came to a dwelling with door unclosed;
    he entered straight; there was fire in the floor;
    Grandfather and Grandmother owned the house.
  2. The home-folk sat there hard a-working;
    by them stood on the floor a box;
    hewed the husband wood for a warp-beam;
    trim his beard and the locks o’er his brow,
    but mean and scanty the shirt he wore.
  3. The wife sat by him plying her distaff,
    swaying her arms to weave the cloth,
    with snood on her head and smock on her breast,
    studs on her shoulders, and scarf on her neck.
  4. Well knew Rig how to give them counsel;
    he sat him down in the middle of the floor,
    and the home-folk twain upon either side.
  5. Grandmother set forth plenteous dishes;
    cooked was the calf, of dainties best.
    Thence Rig uprose prepared to rest. —
    Well he knew how to give them counsel —
    he laid him down in the middle of the bed
    and the home-folk twain upon either side.
  6. Thus he tarried three nights together,
    then on he strode in the middle of the road
    while thrice three moons were gliding by.
  7. A child had Grandmother, Churl they called him,
    and sprinkled with water and swathed in linen,
    rosy and ruddy, with sparkling eyes.
    He grew and throve, and forthwith ‘gan he
    to break in oxen, to shape the harrow,
    to build him houses and barns to raise him,
    to fashion carts and follow the plough.
  8. Then home they drove with a key-hung maiden
    in goat-skin kirtle, named Daughter-in-Law.
    They wed her to Churl in her bridal linen:
    the twain jade ready, their wealth a-sharing,
    kept house together, and joyous lived.
  9. Children reared they thus they called them:
    Youth and Hero, Thane, Smith, Yeoman,
    Broad-limb, Peasant, Sheaf-beard, Neighbour,
    Farmer, Speaker and Stubbly-beard.
  10. By other names were the daughters called:
    Dame, Bride, Lady, Gay, and Gaudy,
    Maid, Wife, Woman, Bashful, Slender.
    Thence are come the kindreds of churls.

The Birth of Earl

  1. Still on went Rig the straight roads along
    till he came to a hall whose gates looked south.
    Pushed was the door to, a ring in the post set:
    he forthwith entered the rush-strewn room.
    Each other eyeing, the home-folk sat there —
    Father and Mother, — twirling their fingers.
    There was the husband, string a-twining,
    shafting arrows and shaping bows:
    and there was the wife o’er her fair arms wondering,
    smoothing her linen, stretching her sleeves.
    A high-peaked coif and a breast-brooch wore she,
    trailing robes and a blue-tinged sark.
    Her brow was brighter, her breast was fairer,
    her throat was whiter than driven snow.
  2. Well knew Rig how to give them counsel;
    he sat him down in the middle of the floor,
    and the home-folk twain upon either side.
  3. Then took Mother a figured cloth,
    white, of linen, and covered the board;
    thereafter took she a fine-baked loaf,
    white of wheat and covered the cloth:
    next she brought forth plenteous dishes,
    set with silver, and spread the board
    with brown-fried bacon and roasted birds.
    There was wine in a vessel and rich-wrought goblets;
    they drank and revelled while day went by.
  4. Well knew Rig how to give them counsel;
    he rose ere long and prepared his couch:
    he laid him down in the middle of the bed,
    and the home-folk twain upon either side.
  5. Thus he tarried three nights together;
    then on he strode in the middle of the road
    while thrice three moons were gliding by.
  6. Then a boy had Mother; she swathed him in silk,
    and with water sprinkled him; called him Earl.
    Light were his locks, and fair his cheeks,
    flashing his eyes like a serpent’s shone.
  7. Grew Earl forthwith in the halls and ‘gan
    to swing the shield, to fit the string,
    to bend the bow, to shaft the arrow,
    to hurl the dart, to shake the spear,
    to ride the horse, to loose the hounds,
    to draw the sword, and to swim the stream.
  8. Forth from the thicket came Rig a-striding,
    Rig a-striding, and taught him runes,
    his own name gave him, — as son he claimed him,
    and bade him hold the ancestral fields, —
    the ancestral fields — and the ancient home.
  9. Then on rode Earl through the murky wood,
    through the rimy fells till he reached a hall.
    His shaft he shook, his shield he brandished,
    his steed he galloped, his sword he drew;
    war he wakened, the field he reddened,
    the doomed he slew, and won him lands —
    till alone he ruled over eighteen halls.
    Gold he scattered and gave to all men
    treasures and trinkets and slender-ribbed horses;
    wealth he strewed and sundered rings.
  10. Along dewy roads his messengers drive
    till the hall they reached where Ruler dwelt.
    A daughter owned he, dainty fingered,
    fair and skilful, Erna called.
  11. They wooed her and brought her home a-driving;
    to Earl they wed her in veil fine-woven:
    husband and wife lived happy together,
    their children waxed and life enjoyed.

The Birth of King

  1. Heir was the eldest, Bairn the second,
    Babe, Successor, Inheritor, Boy,
    Descendent, Offspring, Son, Youth, Kinsman;
    Kon the kingly was youngest born.
  2. Forthwith grew up the sons of Earl;
    games they learned, and sports and swimming,
    taming horses, round shields bending,
    war shafts smoothing, ash spears shaking;
    but King the youngest alone knew runes,
    runes eternal and runes of life.
    Yet more he knew, — how to shelter men,
    to blunt the sword-edge and calm the sea:
    he learnt bird language, to quench the fire flame,
    heal all sorrows and soothe the heart;
    strength and might of eight he owned.
  3. Then he strove in runes with Rig, the Earl,
    crafty wiles he used and won,
    so gained his heritage, held the right thus
    Rig to be called and runes to know.
  4. Young King rode once through thicket and wood,
    shooting arrows and slaying birds,
    till spake a crow, perched lone on a bough:
    “Why wilt thou thus kill birds, young King?
    ‘Twould fit thee rather to ride on horses,
    to draw the sword and to slay the foe.
  5. “Dan and Damp have dwellings goodlier,
    homesteads fairer than ye do hold;
    and well they know the keel to ride,
    the sword to prove and wounds to strike.”[2]

*Rig: the name is derived from the Irish (ríg in other cases) meaning ‘king’.  The identification of Heimdall with Rig is not absolutely secure, since it is based only on the prose introduction, but the beginning of Völuspá (the Seeress’s Prophecy), asking for attention from all ‘the offspring of Heimdall’, seems to suggest that the god did have some connection with the creation of mankind.[3]

References

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R%C3%ADgs%C3%BEula#/media/File:Rig_in_Great-grandfather%27s_Cottage.jpg
  2. Bray, O. (1908). The Elder or Poetic Edda. Part I {The Mythological Poems, volume II.
  3. Larrington, C. (1996). trans. The Poetic Edda.