#30DaysMagicalRoots Days 16 & 17

Day 16: Connect with Mother Earth
Go outside! Find a tree to sit with for a while. Maybe clean up if there is garbage around it. Let today be a day of service to Mother Earth.

Today was not a day for being outside. With the quick weather changes that happen in the summer, and the rains come, it brings headaches and fatigue. I still very much enjoyed the rain though, the smell of petrichor before the rain especially.

I think on a nearly daily basis, whether or not I can go outside, I either look out the window, or go hang outside on the deck or near my garden bed to just feel the earthy energies.  I really love feeling the grass and springy soil beneath bare feet when the weather is warm, knowing that that soil provides so much for not only me, but every living thing that walks upon it and makes its home there.

One of the things I would love having one day is some sort of all-seasons sun room, so many windows, so that even in the coldest parts of winter, I can go out, sit with the plants that live in there, and connect to the earth without worrying about weather. Thunderstorms would be even more magical in a room like that.

 

Day 17: Raise Some Energy
Try chanting, singing, drumming, or dancing! Turn some tunes on and work on that Stevie Nicks spin. When you’re feeling complete throw your arms up and send it shooting out through your hands into the Universe.

Oh, this is one of my favourites! I don’t believe I’ve mentioned very much on the blog here about dancing, so I’ll fill you in.

The past year or so, as I inched towards 30, not that it’s that big of a deal, I’ve been really feeling the need to take care of my body, to move it, to really be seated within it. To enjoy it. So I off and on would do yoga. I discovered Kundalini yoga, which is amazing, and works very well spiritually for me, however, it still wasn’t quite right. In February, I stumbled upon Rachel Brice dancing in a Stellamara performance video. Belly dancing. It just immediately connected with something in me that was super grabby hands about the whole idea.

I Googled her, of course, and found the site, Datura Online, that she runs with other amazing dancers. I’m especially inspired/moved by Colleena Shakti’s teachings in traditional Indian Dance, and her performances of Temple style dance (she has an amazing temple dance for Durga that is so emotionally moving and pure, I must share it, so take a look below).

There’s just something so pure about moving the body, not using words. I even feel this way about words when it comes to music sometimes, as some of the most powerful songs for me are wordless, just this instinctual song that can be understood regardless. We can speak to each other, tell stories, be intimate, be passionate, and understand each other, all just using the movement of our limbs.

I used to dance quite a bit as a kid and young teenager, but like many entering the “adult” world (seriously, what the hell is that anyway?), we feel we need to not play anymore, to not be so overtly joyful or expressive. To keep all of our feelings, no matter the intensity, inside. We feel we must only do these serious exercises to keep our bodies in working order, to not have any fun in them. Dance can be serious business, of course, especially if you’re a performer. But please, show me any performer, of dance, of music, of acting, who doesn’t go out on stage and enjoy themselves, who doesn’t have that energy build up and express itself in the joy of the act? This is why we love performers of all arts, their expression and use of the energies of passion, of inspiration, of joy, of the emotion they pull upon.

So for me, right now, and hopefully for a long time, I’m dancing. I’m being in the moment in my body, and feeling the power of the dance and my body. Feeling the energy that creates, and sometimes after a dance session, I put that energy into a candle, or simply send that energy out with a purpose.

It’s so freeing, and highly recommended ❤

A Month for Baldr – III – Symbols & Icons

Here we are, day three of the second meme I’m doing for Baldr! And in this episode, we take a look at Baldr’s symbols and icons!

Chamomile
Tripleurospermum indorum, or matricaria perforata L. Also known as scentless mayweed, scentless chamomile, wild chamomile, mayweed, false chamomile, German chamomile, Baldr’s Brow, baldeyebrow, and baldursbrá.

“He is so fair of countenance and bright that he shines of himself,
there is a grass so white that it is evened with Baldr’s brows,
it is of all grasses whitest and thereby mayest thou mark his fairness in hair and body.”

– Gylfaginning, Prose Edda of Snorri Sturlson, translated by Arthur Gilchrist Brodeur 1916

Chamomile is widely used to aid in sleep, quite apt considering Baldr had prophetic dreams of His own death. This is one of my favourite herbs to sip in tea or to smell, or even just to look at, even before Baldr came along 🙂

Mistletoe
Another herb very connected to His history. Whether you believe He was killed in the manner of Snorri’s telling, or Saxo’s, misletoe was the weapon used. In Saxo’s version, it isn’t wasn’t the actual plant, but Hodr’s sword named Mistletoe.

Hringhorni
Baldr’s ship that He was laid upon after death, where Odin whispered words into His ears, and depending on the version, where Nanna threw Herself as the pyre was burning and pushed out into the river.

Draupnir
Odin gifted Baldr His self replicating gold arm ring at Baldr’s funeral. Now here’s where I’m not entirely sure what symbolism that will have for everyone reading this (as well as for They Themselves), because if you believe in Ragnarok (which I tend towards not as it seems too much of a Christian contrivance to help rid themselves of other Gods), it holds the symbolism of kingship and soverignty. Perhaps Odin was giving it to Baldr so that after Ragnarok, Baldr could claim His role as King in the fresh start afterwards? That on top of them basically making Baldr a Norse Jesus.
I like to think that perhaps Odin gifted it to Baldr because Baldr was supposed to be the next in line as the Son of Odin and Frigg, Prince of Asgard. Draupnir would have been Baldr’s, yet that future was ended when Baldr died. I feel it also tells us something by the significance of the ring, that those worthy would receive one of its rings, but Baldr was most worthy, most loyal. And here, that hints to me that Baldr agreed to His death, knew why it must occur, that He needed to be sacrificed. This makes sense if you look at the imagery upon Scandinavian braceteates.

Tears
Everyone cried over Baldr, and that’s not something to be taken lightly. If you’ve read Anatoly Liberman’s paper titled Some Controversial Aspects of the Myth of Baldr”, he posits that Baldr was seen, and is, connected to rain and fertility of the land.

This is something that makes sense to me and is part of my own doxa, as He very much enjoys when I’m out in the garden (and to insert some non-related thing in here, ’cause why not? I have two large gardens, one is currently planted, the other wasn’t, and needs to be tilled for my waiting plants, well, the second garden is overrun with daisies, as well as another bed that’s been left and been overrun by them. Daisies sure look like chamomile, don’t they?).
Along with that, I have given thought to Odin, Thor, and Baldr, as Gods of the Sky, Odin bringing the storms and wind, Thor bringing the thunder and lightning, and Baldr bringing the nourishing rains, as well as His own light. Just my thoughts though.

Sowilo
The sun rune. If you know anything about Baldr, you can see why this rune is connected with Him. He is His own sun, glowing, providing warmth and light. The sun provides the same, which nourishes the land, another reason why I connect Baldr to rain and the fertility of the earth.

Dagaz
In some iterations of Baldr’s name, some form of “day” is added on (Baeldaeg, Baldag, Beldeg). Day is another obvious association of Baldr, again with His own light that shines upon the world. I also feel it is connected to His aspect as bringing fertility to the earth, as long, warm days are important for plant growth (just take a look at lush jungles around the equator, or even the drastic change from midwinter to midsummer far beyond the equator).

That’s about it as far as symbols go, I’m sure in time, I will discover my own personal symbols and such that remind me of and represent Him.