Tag Archive: frigga


I thought I’d share these projects with you…altars happen to spring up all over the place!

First, an altar to Frigga.  I decided to set this one up in the dining room on the buffet.

Altar to Frigga

Altar to Frigga

There is a covered offering bowl for liquids; a plate to burn incense; blue tea-light candle holders; a piece of blue lace agate, a piece of unakitemoonstone pendant and a small quartz crystal ball – these just felt right.  Also, a Glade glass candle holder as an offering bowl – I just really liked the spirals etched in the metal – reminds me of spinning and wyrd.  I plan to add other items later to include flowers, keys, maybe some representation of ducks or geese (my pair of pink quartz Mandarin ducks now that I think about it…) and a small distaff and/or a small replica of a spinning wheel.  I’m also waiting on a hand-crafted Frigga soy blót candle I had ordered several weeks ago adorned with a Perthro rune hung on handspun Blue Moon baby camel and merino yarn.  I’d also like to incorporate 12 small white tea-light candles around Her to symbolize Her 12 handmaidens.

Next up is an altar to Odin.

Altar to Odin

Altar to Odin

I had originally thought to set this up above my computer desk upstairs as that is where I spend a lot time seeking knowledge.  When I set Odin’s statue up on the window sill, I had a rock knickknack/paper weight there that said: “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” – totally reminded me of Odin.  So, I went back downstairs and set Odin’s altar up above my Ancestor altar.  There is also a wood carved raven; a smokey quartz; a piece of black obsidian, and a blue optic crystal ball – totally reminded me of the eye he sacrificed at Mimir’s Well for a single drink of enchanted water that granted him wisdom and fore-sight.  Also, an offering plate and a cup in back with depictions of  pinecones and evergreens on it.  I am also waiting on a hand-crafted dark blue soy candle charged with Baltic Amber and 9 sacred herbs of Northern Tradition shamanism including Mugwort, Plantain, Nettle, Fennel, Chamomile, Sweet Cicely, Watercress, Crabapple Wood and Viper’s Bugloss adorned with a raven charm.  

Altar to Odin

Knife unsheathed

So yeah, some neat things in the works 🙂

MUST REMEMBER THIS!!!

MUST REMEMBER THIS!!!

So, where to begin in this post?  Balance…If you can believe it, yes, life has gotten a little more hectic – another monkey wrench or two thrown into the mix of life.  All was almost balanced – house, kiddies, online college courses, spiritual development, devotions and practices.  Now however, due to my husband’s new work schedule that now keeps him from the house almost 16 hours a day with unknown days off in between, I came to the hard and sudden realization on Monday that I’m going to have to yet again, make some changes in my life – really sit down, prioritize and effectively manage my time or I will burn out.  This has been showing up quite a bit in my daily Rune readings  with Ehwaz on an almost daily basis and  quite recently Jera in opposition – indicating a setback, a need for readjusting and asking for help and Isa – again, time to slow down!  This really sucks as I HATE change!  I’ve just started attending a Seeker’s Course with The Nine Worlds American Kindred which is about an hour’s drive for me, am studying and have recently been initiated into the Apple Branch and am in the middle of completing the Dedicant Path with the ADF (well, actually trying to play catch up as I originally wanted to have it completed within a year of joining the ADF, but that may or may not be a realistic goal right now…).  I think, why have these opportunities presented themselves only to be taken away (referring to the Seeker’s Course in particular)??

To add to all of this, I’ve also been dealing with some uncomfortable health issues and upon visiting the doctor on Monday, left me with 2 choices of treatment: (1) major surgery with the removal of an organ that I’m not quite ready to part with yet (and plus I have no one to help me during recovery time should I choose that method of treatment) or (2) hormone injections (which sucks because I like the way I feel not being on hormones).  Overwhelmed…feeling quite overwhelmed and ever so slightly grumpy…

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My most recent and amazing Full Moon ritual back on March 28 gives me some relief and comfort knowing that things will be OK when I reflect back on it.  Upon welcoming Freyja and lighting Her candle, the candle began to literally crackle and pop, putting on a most amazing light show that left me speechless and heart racing until the flame settled back down; there was no doubt that She was there.  Personal offerings were made, I had a most amazing and powerful experience in a meditation from a Daily Om course I had ordered last month that I finally started, followed by a Rune reading: Uruz, Eihwaz, and Raidho.  My interpretation indicated inner strength coming into effect in daily life – think before acting, take responsibility or act with responsibility and I will have the power to overcome any obstacle.  Still holding onto outdated beliefs or desires (yes, this was also told to me at Ostara – I have broken many restraints but there are still a few I need to break), do NOT resist change.  Trust and take control – know the true nature, seasons and cycles; BALANCE action with planning and reflection.

And in walks Frigga who has been sitting back since December and observing in Her strong, quiet, and all-knowing way…Perhaps it’s time to develop my home, hearth and kitchen Craft.  As She is associated with the home and also with magic, given my circumstances of severely limited to now non-existant solo travel time, I do feel it’s time to work with Her and learn these things necessary to master said Craft.

Reading Nimue Brown’s post “The Druid balancing act” yesterday was very inspirational and spoke to me…

Freyja rides atop Hildisvíni to visit Hyndla (1895) by Lorenz Frølich.

Freyja rides atop Hildisvíni to visit Hyndla (1895) by Lorenz Frølich.

Also on an interesting note, yesterday’s Goddess of the Day was Rindr.  My daily Rune draw included Isa – associated with Rindr.  Given Her story in lore and some past issues I’ve dealt with that still do affect my life today, I feel as though Freyja is sending me to Rindr.  Just as Freyja had to visit the giantess Hyndla to get answers She needed, so too must I visit Rindr to get answers and knowledge needed to progress – just hopefully the meeting(s) won’t  be as confrontational…

So, as it stands right now, I need to slow down and take a step back, look at the bigger picture and prioritize – decide what has to be cut back or be put on the back burner for now.  A lot of my work is going to have to be solo or online.  I will try to make it out to Alabama or up to Atlanta for the High Days with the kiddies as I can because I do need some “real time” contact with community for the sake of sanity.  As a dear and wise mentor pointed out yesterday, balance is very important!

Welcome Freyja!

Wow, it has been too long since I’ve written last.  As I’ve stated in my other blog, The Journeys of a Nomadic Pagan, “Reflections During the Dark Moon“, life has gotten extremely busy for me and I’ve found it difficult to sit down and write about all the cool things going on.  If you recall from an earlier post, “The Dark Mother Does NOT Hold Back and Other Things“, I was having a very intense time with Odin making his presence overwhelmingly known in my life.  It seemed as though Odin was there, all the time, pushing me so hard in the pursuit of  knowledge that I was putting everyday activities to the side, constantly trying to play catch up late at night with everyday mundane activities.  I had to tell Odin that my family and my children come first in my life right now.  Then, in stepped Freyja and everything changed…

“Freyja” by Kris Waldherr

“Freyja” by Kris Waldherr

I don’t recall the exact date now – looking back though, I’d say that at around February 23rd (I know it was after a conversation that I was having with a good friend of mine on February 20, telling her how I felt like there was more work that I felt needed to be done or to prove myself before I could connect with Freyja; but before the Full Moon on February 25th because I dedicated that Full Moon rite to Her) Freyja made a surprising visit as I was falling asleep one night.  I was right on the verge or falling asleep, when you’re in that in-between state, but still somewhat conscious of what’s going on around you.  All of a sudden, I “saw” these bright prisms or rays of white/blue/purple/pink light beam down and light everything up.  Then, I saw Her – She was very similar in appearance to Kris Waldherr’s depiction of Freyja, chariot and cats and all, but different – Her hair was brighter or a lighter blonde and the clothing She was dressed in lighter colored clothing, white and grey.

Her energy was amazing and completely surrounded me – every breath I was taking in felt as though I was breathing Her energy into my lungs and engulfed my body.  The only way I can describe it is warm kitten fur – seriously – it felt like warm soft kitten fur!

That night, She made it very clear that She was here to stick around and has even given me certain requirements or tasks that She strongly suggests me to do if I am to represent Her and become one of Her priestesses; and since then Odin has stepped back, way back.   It was almost as though She had to “step in” and acting in a protective manner and tell Odin to step back for a while.  Later, I found (and I can’t remember the source – still looking for it) that Freyja was the only Goddess that could, for whatever reason, really stand up to Odin and have him step back from a person that he had a hold on as it were.  I think it might have to do with the fact that She had taught Odin magic and that gave Her the authority to do so, or the fact that Freyja has the first pick of souls of the slain or fallen warriors as Lady Imbrium had mentioned.

This new deep connection with the gods of the Norse pantheon almost made me feel conflicted in a way.  You see, for my ADF hearth culture, I was sure on my choice of the Celtic or Gaulish pantheons to work with.  However, things have taken a real turn and it seems as though the gods of the Norse hearth culture have chosen me.  Funny how that works…but I still continue to honor the Goddesses I feel especially close to and have their altars I set up (The Morrígan, Brighid and Epona/Rhiannon) and things seem and feel OK.  I’m also in the process of setting up my ADF altar to Frigga (who has a real quiet but firm presence in my life – but She doesn’t say too much, She just kind of sits back and observes) and Odin.  In fact, a few weeks back, I actually had a dream of Brighid and Freyja.  Their images were on a single card from the Goddess Guidance Oracle deck by Doreen Virtue.  It kept spinning, Freyja on one side and Brighid on the other.  To me, it signified balance and a feeling that it was OK to work with both pantheons, but that they should not be mixed.  Balance was the key.

I’ve also noticed I’ve been dreaming of runes and seeing them more often.  I had a dream one night of runes that appeared from the usual swirling grey mists in my “spiritual dreams”.  Out of the mists Fehu and Gebo appeared.  These runes apparently have some type of significance to Her (as does Ehwaz I’ve been finding out).  A few others appeared too, but I don’t remember them – Berkano, Jera, and Mannaz seem to be standing out; but those first two are the two that really stand out in my memory.  Also, there are times when I close my eyes and runes just seem to swirl around and around….

My personal altar to Freyja - a work in progress.

My personal altar to Freyja – a work in progress.

I have since set up a personal altar to Her in my bedroom by my bed side, making daily offerings to Her of different sweet-smelling incense that She seems to enjoy (strawberry, latin lover, and amber romance).  She also made it known that She likes pearls.  This was a little strange to me as She is a fertility Vanir Goddess, more closely associated with the earth I thought – how was She connected with the sea?  But looking at Her father, Njörðr, god of the sea and weather, it makes a little more sense.  Then I found this wonderful blog entry, “M is for Mardöll“, it made much more sense.  Plus, She just thinks they’re really pretty – She likes pretty things 😉

I continue to speak with Her and give Her praises daily, and She in turn comforts me, helps to remind me to go within and find my center when I’m angry or upset, and tells me what work needs to be done in the healing process I’ve started back in February.  The relationship I’ve been working on building with Her is amazing.  She is so strong and confident, an amazing healer and full of wisdom and knowledge that will come to me in time with hard work (there are things that She has advised me I NEED to learn and WILL learn) as She sees fit and feels I am ready.  The new found healing, love, confidence, blessings and opportunities that have presented themselves within the past month or so have been so amazing and transformative – unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before.  Welcome Freyja!  Hail and praises to you Sweet Lady!

"Oak King" by Tara Upchurch

“Oak King” by Tara Upchurch

“The Holly King is gone, and the Oak King reigns –
Yule is the time of the old winter gods!
Hail to Baldr! To Saturn! To Odin!
Hail to Amaterasu! To Demeter!
Hail to Ra! To Horus!
Hail to Frigga, Minerva, Sulis and Cailleach Bheur!
It is their season, and high in the heavens,
may they grant us their blessings this winter day.” ~ Patti Wigington

"Winter's goddess" by *frenchfox

“Winter’s goddess” by *frenchfox

 

 

 

 

http://paganwiccan.about.com/od/yulethelongestnight/qt/YuleOldGodsPray.htm

As winter has ever so slowly been making its way to the North Country, I’ve yet again begun to feel Skadi’s presence.  Along with Her presence, I’ve been feeling a draw or a pull to explore the Norse and Germanic pantheons.  Since I had just finished reading A Dance with Dragons and have at least another 1 1/2 – 2 years before the next book in A Song of Ice and Fire series comes out, I was browsing my bookshelves and wondering what to read next.  My attention was drawn to 3 books in particular; Exploring the Northern Tradition by Galina Krasskova; Essential Ásatrú by Diane L. Paxson and Northern Mysteries and Magick by Freya Aswynn.  I ended up picking Krasskova’s book a few nights ago as it looked like a good intro into the Norse and Germanic beliefs, pantheon and lore.

The book thus far has turned out to be a very good read!  I’m a little over 3/4 of the way through the book and I feel like I have a real good beginner’s understanding of the lore, the cosmology, and the major Gods and Goddesses.  I found myself for the first time really drawn to a God – to the All-Father Odin (who I was drawn to about a year ago while still living in Alaska, but didn’t really follow through with anything.  I guess it wasn’t time…).  I also felt a strong resonation with Frigg, Sif, and Eir.  As I read their lore and through meditations or actions to build a relationship with Them, I could almost feel their energy – very much different from that of the Goddesses I already work with: Brighid, the Morrígan and Epona.

409px-Georg_von_Rosen_-_Oden_som_vandringsman,_1886_(Odin,_the_Wanderer)

“Odin the Wanderer” by Georg von Rosen

In fact, I was getting the feeling that the Morrígan wasn’t very happy about this exploration at all – especially when it came to Odin.  However, I did promise Her an offering (a healthy offering of wine actually to all 3 Goddesses mentioned, also to Danu and the Shining Ones as it had been well past due) and that of course I still honored Her.  I felt it necessary to explain that these Gods and Goddesses I am learning about are also the Gods and Goddesses of my Ancestors as I not only descend from Irish ancestry; but German, English, Dutch, French, Polish, Czechoslovakian, and Sicilian.  I felt that an understanding and a peace had been reached and life was good again.

frigg_spinning_clouds_cr sif tumblr_m2bpdjtXtv1rso9q6o1_1280

Getting back to Frigg, Sif and Eir…Yet again, I’ve been going through a bit of a rough time (hey – it happens to the best of us from time to time) dealing with personal issues.  While I recognize the triggers that set me back and know what I’ll be going through and yes, I will come back out of it – the process of going through PTSD flashbacks still very much sucks.  I could feel Frigg, the All-Mother’s strength and sense of duty flowing in to kind of give me a boost and can still feel Her here now; Sif’s patience and again, strength to endure the humbling and hard times; and the healer and shaman, Eir – who not only was the “best of physicians” but also Galina Krasskova explains “is a good Goddess to call upon when facing the proverbial ‘dark night of the soul.'”  Though I haven’t set an altar up to Eir (or any of these Goddesses as of yet), I did find the meditation outlined in Krasskova’s book to Eir very soothing and relaxing – a meditation and a place that I would very much like to visit.

Thinking about and taking a good hard look at the 9 Noble Noble Virtues of Heathnery (Courage; Discipline; Fidelity; Honor; Hospitality; Industriousness; Perseverance; Self-Reliance and Truth), I found that they are very similar to the ADF’s Nine Virtues (Wisdom; Piety; Vision; Courage; Integrity; Perseverance; Hospitality; Moderation and Fertility).  Examining each virtue – where I fall short or where I feel I’m in a good place – is a must, I feel, in order to better my life…plus, I need to write an essay on the Nine Virtues as part of completing the ADF’s Dedicant Path.

jera

So, last night I dreamed of runes – lots of runes swirling around, in and out of the familiar mists that accompanies my spiritual dreams.  One rune that stuck out was Jera.  One thing that really resonated with me with the rune Jera, according to Runesecrets.com, was that “Jera has to do with right timing. Jera is in the maxim ‘This too shall pass’, the proverb, ‘As you sow, so shall you reap’, and in the modern adage, ‘time heals all wounds.’ Using this rune is the key to understanding the mysteries of time and the psychological importance of dividing and managing time.  Deadlines bring out the best in us and motivate us to grow to levels beyond our present ability. It also moves us to strategically taking action when the time is right. Take advantage of the ups and coast through the downs.”  Apparently, Eir is very much tied to this rune as well.

Rosebud_Sunset_by_wonenownlee

“Rosebud Sunset” by =wonenownlee

Frigg gives me a sense of strength, duty, and responsibility.  Sif gives me a sense of hope for the future – not the immediate future – but the future that is several years off from now.  I can’t help but feel Sif’s presence in the quote by Anaïs Nin, “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”  I have felt this pain for a very long time, and in time, when the time is right, I too will blossom find happiness and fulfillment.

Goddess Holde

“The Goddess Holda” by Carrie Kirkpatrick

“Holda’s themes are longevity, wisdom, kinship, magic, destiny and karma. Her symbols are white items and aged items. Among the Teutons, Holda is known as the White Lady, an appellation that alludes to the color of Her hair. This Goddess is the wise, ancient crone, who has learned the lessons of destiny and karma from a long, well-lived life and who bears the knowledge of magic’s deeper mysteries to us with patience and time.

In Massachusetts, the first Sunday in October is set aside to honor grandparents and their vital role in families. Customarily, grandparents (or ‘adopted’ ones) are invited for dinner and showered with attention. I think this is a lovely tradition as it stands, honoring Holda’s wisdom through the elders in our community. Go to a nearby nursing home and spend half an hour or more cheering up someone. Listen to people’s stories of days gone by, and let their insights inspire you.

To improve your own awareness of karmic law, or to increase your magical insights, wear Holda’s white (a scarf on your head would be good) or carry a white stone with you to represent Her (coral is ideal, being a stone of wisdom). Alternatively, eat some aged cheese or drink aged wine to remind yourself that ‘old’ doesn’t mean outmoded. People can become better with time and with Holda’s guidance, if we remember to appreciate the years and the people who have gone before us on this path.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Holda” by Neil Geddes-Ward

There was a ton of information on Holda to go through!  She turns out to be a very interesting and complex and all encompassing Goddess; seen as the maiden in summer sitting by a lake combing Her beautiful white hair; as mother who made the fields, animals and women fertile and protected women and children, as well as accompanying those infants who had died before they’d been named to the Other World;  and as wizened crone in the winter who was stern and despised laziness.  She also had connections with many different Goddesses, both within the Germanic and Norse pantheons and even outside: Goddesses to include Freya due to Her association with cats (appaerntly the name of the cave She lived in, Kitzkammer means ‘Cat Chamber’) and Frigga for Her associations with the household, women, spinning and children; Perchte and Berchta (which appears to be debatable to some as to whether they were the same Goddess or entirely different Beings with similar attributes); and later in post-Christian times, even Diana and Habondia as She was demonized and said to lead “a wild hunt in which She led the souls of infants who died unbaptized, witches, and heathens in general.” [1]

“Åsgårdsreien” by Peter Nicolai Arbo

In a paper written by SummerGaile, she explains that: “In Jacob Grimm’s Teutonic Mythology, Holda is spoken of as host to the Wild Hunt or ‘Wilde Heer’.  In this account She is the consort of Woden, supreme god of the Germanic tribes occupying central Europe in ancient times.   There are many variations of this story, but the themes that are most prominent are the ones that illustrate Holda leading a Wild Hunt to gather those souls that may still be lingering earth bound; and it is She who gathers them during this ride to usher them into the Other World.  Another variation of this record is that She gathers un-baptized children, or more accurately, she gathers those born and who died without having been given a birth name, and takes them safely to the Other World.” [2]  Due to Her connections with death, magic and witches, She is also sometimes associated with Hecate and Hel.

Hag by Angie (aka DeadSpider)

And of course, in the post-Christian times as we see with many independent mother Goddesses, She is transformed from Mother Holda, or “Gracious One” who helped and protected women and children into the “Goddess of the Witches” – an old ugly hag who rode a broom across the night sky; as well as many of Her symbols taking on new evil attributes: “No where is this demonization more clear than in ‘Sleeping Beauty’ where the spinning wheel and spindle are turned into symbols of evil. Many of Her other attributes were turned around as well. Her protection of the dead soul of infants was turned around to Her creeping in and stealing children from their cradles. Her image as wise old woman, instilling moral values turned to the foolish old Mother Goose who spreads wives tales.” [3]

“Alma Parens” by William Bouguereau

“Throughout German, Austrian and Swiss folktales we find this former Goddess demoted, together with Her twin Perchta, to a witch.  Frau Holle was the more pleasant of the two: sunshine streamed from Her hair when She combed it, snow covered the earth when She shook a feather comforter, and rain fell when She threw away laundry water.   She was a splendid white lady who appeared each noon to bathe in the fountain, from which children were said to be born.  She lived in a cave in the mountain or in a well, and people could visit Her by diving into it.

She rode on the wind in a wagon.  Once She had to have a broken lynchpin repaired, and the man who helped Her later found that savings of wood from the project had fumed to gold.  In addition to gold, She rewarded good people with useful gifts, such as the invention of flax and spinning.

Her feast day was celebrated on winter solstice, when She checked the quality of each spinner’s work.  A good spinner would wake to find Frau Holle had left her a single golden thread, but sloppy ones found their work tangled, their spinning wheels shattered or burnt.

The period between December 25 and January 6 – the ‘twelve days of Christmas’ – were sacred to Frau Holle during that time She traveled the world in Her wagon.  No rotary actions were allowed; sleighs were used instead of wagons, and all meal-grinding had to cease.  Her twin Perchta was, if not welcomed, at least acknowledged at the same season” (Monaghan, p. 127).

“Frigga, Goddess of Women & Wisdom” by Thorskegga

 

Correspondences
Other Names: Frau Holda, Frau Holle, Winter Goddess, White Lady, Mother Yule, Hulde
Attributes: Virtue, Motherhood, Wisdom
Season: Winter, Yule
Symbols: Spindle, Spinning Wheel, Flax, Geese, Apples, Milk, Elder Tree, Elderberry Tea
Colors: White, Ice Blue
Symbols: Snow, Snowflakes, Well      [4]

 

 

 

Sources:

Eaves, Susan “Ratatask”. Eplagarthrkindred.org, “HoldaArticle“.

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Frau Holle”.

Paxson, Diana L. Hrafnar.org,”Holda“.

SummerGaile. Order of the White Moon, “The Sacred Journey and Migration of Frau Holda Into our Modern Reality“.

Zmaj, Majka. Order of the White Moon, “Holda: White Lady of Winter“.

 

 

Suggested Links:

AOR, Thorsigurd. Odinic-rite.org, “Holda“.

Finnegan, Margaret. Margaretfinnegan.blogspot.com, “Goddess of the Week: Holda“.

Fox, Selena. Beliefnet.com, “Riding with Holda“.

Dashu, Max. Suppressedhistories.net, “The Old Goddess“.

GardenStone. Goddess Holle: In Search of a Germanic Goddess.

Glaux. Afwcraft.blogspot.com, “Faces of the Golden Queen“.

Graves, Shannon. Northernpaganism.org, Who is Holda?

Motherholda.blog.com, “Holda

Linda-heathenycatmusings.blogspot.com, “H is for the goddess HOLDA – Ancient Lady of the Sacred Land, Queen of the ‘other folk’“.

Marks, Dominic. Lowchensaustralia.com, “Norse Goddess Names“.

Motz, Lotte. Winterscapes.com, “The Winter Goddess: Percht, Holda, and Related Figures“.

Theoddgods.com, “Perchta/Berchta“.

Seigfried, Karl E. H. Norsemyth.org, “THE GODS & GODDESSES, Part Two“.

Swampy. Dutchie.org, “Goddess Berchta“.

Wikipedia, “Holda“.

Goddess Freyja

“Freyja” by Lisa Iris

“Freyja’s themes are devotion, strength, the sun, magic and passion. Her symbols are lions and strawberries.  In Nordic tradition, Freyja’s name means ‘lady’. Generally speaking, it is Her domain to care for matters of the heart. In mythology, Freyja is stunningly beautiful, a mistress to the gods and She appears driving a chariot pulled by cats. When saddened, Freyja cries gold tears, and She wears a shining golden necklace (alluding to some solar associations). Many people in northern climes credit Her for teaching magic to mankind.

In astrology, people born under the sign of Leo are energetic and filled with Freyja’s solar aspect. And, like Freyja, they are ardent, dynamic lovers. If your love life needs a pick-me-up, Freyja’s your Goddess to call on. Start with a bowl if strawberries and melted chocolate that you feed to your lover. Remember to nibble passionately while noting into Freyja’s sacred food! This will digest Freyja’s energy for lovemaking. Of you’re single, eat a few berries at breakfast to internalize self-love so more loving opportunities come your way.

To improve love in other areas of your life (the love of friends, live for a job or project, etc.), wear gold-toned clothing or jewelry today to emphasize Freyja’s solar powers. This will give you more tenacity, focus and esteem for whatever you’re putting your hands and heart into.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Freyja” by Kris Waldherr

In Norse mythology, Freyja is a Goddess associated with love, beauty, fertility, gold, seiðr, war, and death. Freyja is the owner of the necklace Brísingamen, rides a chariot driven by two cats, owns the boar Hildisvíni, possesses a cloak of falcon feathers, and, by Her husband Óðr, is the mother of two daughters, Hnoss and Gersemi. Along with Her brother Freyr, Her father Njörðr, and Her mother (Njörðr’s sister, unnamed in sources), She is a member of the Vanir. Stemming from Old Norse Freyja, modern forms of the name include Freya, Freja, Freyia, Frøya, and Freia.

“Norse Goddess Freja” by zoozee

Freyja rules over Her heavenly afterlife field Fólkvangr and there receives half of those that die in battle, whereas the other half go to the god Odin‘s hall, Valhalla. Within Fólkvangr is Her hall, Sessrúmnir. Freyja assists other deities by allowing them to use Her feathered cloak, is invoked in matters of fertility and love, and is frequently sought after by powerful jötnar who wish to make Her their wife. Freyja’s husband, the god Óðr, is frequently absent. She cries tears of red gold for him, and searches for him under assumed names. Freyja has numerous names, including GefnHörnMardöllSýrValfreyja, and Vanadís.

Freyja is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources; in the Prose Edda and Heimskringla, both written by Snorri Sturluson in the 13th century; in several Sagas of Icelanders; in the short story Sörla þáttr; in the poetry of skalds; and into the modern age in Scandinavian folklore, as well as the name for Friday in many Germanic languages.

“Freyja” by Lindowyn

Scholars have theorized about whether or not Freyja and the Goddess Frigg ultimately stem from a single Goddess common among the Germanic peoples; about Her connection to the valkyries, female battlefield choosers of the slain; and Her relation to other Goddesses and figures in Germanic mythology, including the thrice-burnt and thrice-reborn Gullveig/Heiðr, the Goddesses GefjonSkaðiÞorgerðr Hölgabrúðr and IrpaMenglöð, and the 1st century BCE “Isis” of the Suebi. Freyja’s name appears in numerous place names in Scandinavia, with a high concentration in southern Sweden. Various plants in Scandinavia once bore Her name, but it was replaced with the name of the Virgin Mary during the process of Christianization. Rural Scandinavians continued to acknowledge Freyja as a supernatural figure into the 19th century, and Freyja has inspired various works of art.” [1]

“Valkyrie” by TheBastardSon

Patricia Monaghan tells us that “far from the ancient Near East, home of the lustful warrior Anat, we find a Goddess who is virtually Her double: a Scandinavian mistress of all the gods who was also the ruler of death. Leader of the Valkyries, war’s corpse-maidens, this Goddess was also the one to whom love prayers were most effectively addressed.

The Goddess who gave Her name to the sixth day of our week, Freya was one form of the ‘large-wombed earth,’ another version of which Her people called Frigg the heavenly matron. Here was how Freya appeared to Her worshipers: the most beautiful of all Goddesses, She wore a feathered cloak over Her magical amber necklace as She rode through the sky in a chariot drawn by cats, or sometimes on a huge golden-bristled boar who may have been Her own brother, the fertility god Frey.

“Freyja” by mari-na

When Freya was in Asgard, the home of the deities, She lived on Folkvangr (‘people’s plain’) in a vast palace called Sessrumnir (‘rich in seats’). She needed such a huge palace to hold the spirit hordes She claimed on the battlefields, for the first choice of the dead was Hers, with leftovers falling to Odin. Like Persephone, the Greek death queen, Freya was also the spirit of the earth’s fertility; like Persephone too, Freya was absent from earth during autumn and winter, a departure that caused the leaves to fall and the earth to wear a mourning cloak of snow. And like Hecate, an alternate form of Persephone, Freya was the Goddess of magic, the one who first brought the power of sorcery to the people of the north.

“Freya” by Hrana Janto

Despite Her connection with death, Freya was never a terrifying Goddess, for the Scandinavians knew She was the essence of sexuality. Utterly promiscuous, She took all the gods as Her lovers – including the wicked Loki, who mated with Her in the form of a flea – but Her special favorite was her brother Frey, recalling Anat’s selection of Her brother Baʿal  as playmate. But Freya had a husband, too, an aspect of Odin named Odr; he was the father of Her daughter Hnossa (‘jewel’). When Odr left home to wander the earth, Freya shed tears of amber. But She soon followed Odr, assuming various names as She sought him: here She was Mardol, the beauty of light on water, there Horn, the linen-woman; sometimes She was Syr, the sow, other times Gefn, the generous one. But always She was ‘mistress,’ for that is the meaning of Her own name, and a particularly appropriate double entendre it proves in Her case” (p. 127 – 128).

 

 

ASSOCIATIONS:

General: Aurora borealis (the Northern Lights), snow, spindle, spinning wheel, wheel of fortune, sword, the full moon, floral bouquets, romantic music, and the day Friday (named in Her honor).

Animals: Geese, cats, pigs, falcons, cuckoos, sparrows, and horses.

Plants: Apple, alder, birch, bramble, cypress, elder, feverfew, mint, mistletoe, mugwort, rose, tansy, thyme, vervain, yarrow, and valerian.

Perfumes/Scents: Rose, sandalwood, cypress, myrtle, vervain.

Gems and Metals: Amber, rose quartz, ruby, citrine, pink tourmaline, emerald, red jasper, jade, malachite, moonstone, silver, gold, copper.

Colors: Red, black, silver, white, and green.     [2]

 

 

 

Sources:

Goddessgift.com, “Goddess Symbols: Freya“.

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Freya”.

Wikipedia, “Freyja“.

 

 

Suggested Links:

Ashtarcommandcrew.net, “Goddess Knowledge and Wisdom – Freyja“.

Blue, Nazarri. Order of the White Moon, “Freya“.

BraveHeart Women, “Goddess Freya“.

Daily Goddess, “Freya – Sexuality“.

Goddess-Guide.com, “Freya“.

Goddessgift.com, “The Goddess Freya“.

Heathwitch. Order of the White Moon, “Freyja: Lady of Magic, Sexuality and Battle“.

Jordsvin. Jordsvin’s Norse Heathen Pages, “Some Observations on the Goddess Freya“.

Kaldera, Raven. Northernpaganism.org, “Freya’s Shrine“.

Krasskova, Galina. Exploring the Northern Tradition, “Freya (Fréo)” (p. 93 – 96).

Krasskova, Galina. Gangleri’s Grove, “Deity of the Month Guest Contribution: A Lesson from Freya“.

Krasskova, Galina. Gangleri’s Grove, “A Ritual for Freya and Frey“.

LadyRavenMoonshadow. Sacredmistsblog.com, “Goddess of the Week: Freya“.

Maris. Marispai.huginnpress.com, “M is for Mardöll“.

Revel, Anita. igoddess.com, “Freya: get back to your passion to get your passion back“.

Squidoo.com, “Freya“.

Took, Thalia. A-Muse-ing Grace Gallery, “Freyja“.

Valkyrietower.com, “Freyja – Goddess of Fertility“.

Wikipedia, “List of names of Freyja“.

Goddess Minne

“Minne’s themes are protection, love, luck, devotion and unity. Her symbols are the linden tree, cups, and beer.  Minne is a German Goddess of love and fertility. Her name – meaning ‘remembrance’ – was applied to a special cup for lovers in this part of the world. The cup was filled with specially prepared beer and raised between two people wishing to deepen their love. This gives Minne a strong association with devotion, unit and fidelity.

During the second weekend in July, people in Geisenheim, Germany, celebrate Lindenfest by gathering around an ancient linden tree (six hundred-plus years old) and celebrate the year’s new wine. All aspects of the festival take place beneath the linden’s branches, which in magic terms represent safety and good fortune. The linden flowers portray Minne’s spirit, having been used in all manner of love magic! To protect a relationship, two lovers should carry dried linden flowers with them always.

When making a promise to each other, a couple may drink a wooden goblet of beer today, linking their destinies. Raise the glass to the sky first saying, ‘Minne’s love upon our lips, devotion in each sip.’

Drink while looking deeply into each other’s eyes. Or, exchange pieces of linden wood as a magical bonding that invokes Minne’s blessing. If linden isn’t native to your area, other trees and bushes that promote Minne’s loving qualities include avens, elm, lemon, orange, peach, primrose, rose and willow.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

I really couldn’t find anything on the Goddess Minne.  I thought I had found a reference in the glossary of The Elder Edda of Saemund Sigfusson, “MUNINN, mind; memory, recollection; G. minne, love” [1], but upon further research, Muninn turned out to be one in a pair of ravens who, along with Huginn (‘thought’), flew all over the world and brought the god Odin information. [2]

I found Minne defined as “An ancient Pagan Goddess who is said to have granted women and men permission to engage in lovemaking. Her name was a synonym for ‘love’, and She was often called Lofn (‘Goddess of Love’). In medieval times, Minne (like Melusine) was worshipped as a mermaid tailed Aphrodite by followers known as Minnesinger and Minstrels.” [3]

“Miranda” by David Delamare

Researching the mermaid aspect, I found this description, “Literally Virgin of the Sea, the mermaid was an image of fish-tailed Aphrodite, the medieval Minne, Maerin, Mari, or Marina. Her Death-Goddess aspect, sometimes named Rán, received the souls of those put to sea in funeral boats.” [4]

While researching Her mermaid aspect, I ran across this information and thought was pretty interesting: “The legends of mermaids may have evolved from snake Goddesses such as the ones found at Knossos in Crete, the largest of the Greek islands. Thousands of years ago, the snake was sacred for its ability to transform in the shedding of its skin and to explore the light of day and the darkness of the earth. The mermaid is a fish-tailed Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love who represents the power of creativity inspired by love. She brings visions to the surface and inspires dreams and desires. She is able to move from the receptive watery depths to the focus of firm land.” [5]  I never really thought about the snake/scale/mermaid connection before, but it makes sense.

“Lofn, Goddess of Love” by Thorskegga

Back to the reference to Lofn, Patricia Monaghan tells us that Lofn, “the Scandinavian Goddess of love had a special purpose: She was charged with smoothing over love’s difficulties.  Lofn (‘mild’) received prayers of those separated from their lovers and was empowered to bring together those She favored” (p. 198).

“Psyche” by Granger

I also found that “Lofn (pronounced LAW-ven) is the Norse Goddess of forbidden love. She is one of Frigg’s handmaidens, and serves Frigg (who is the Goddess of marriage) by removing the obstacles that lovers face. She also presides over the marriage of the two that She has brought together. Lofn’s name, which means ‘praise,’ is also seen as Lofna, Lofe, and Lofua.” [4]

This all seems a little scattered to me, though I can make some connections.  Minne is a Germanic/Norse Goddess of love.  Aphrodite was also a Goddess of love associated with the ocean.  Considering how the Wave Maidens came to be identified with mermaids in Norse mythology, I certainly don’t see any issues preventing the identification of Minne with mermaids either.

 

 

 

Sources:

Iliana’s Faery Realm, “Celtic, Roman, Greek, Norse, & Other Goddesses of Europe: Minne“.

Like a Cat Jewelry and Crafts, “Mermaid-Small“.

Monaghan, Patricia. The New Book of Goddesses and Heroines, “Lofn”.

Moore, Mary Ann. Flying Mermaid Studio, “circles, workshops & retreats; flying mermaids writing circles & retreats“.

Sabrina. Goddess A Day, “Lofn“.

Wikipedia, “Huginn and Muninn“.

 

 

Suggested Links:

Chalquist, Craig. Terrapsych.com, “Glossary of Norse and German Mythology – Lofn“.

Paxson, Diana L. Hrafnar.org, “Beloved“.

Goddess Sága

“Sága’s themes are foresight, divination, inspiration, femininity, psychic abilities, kindness and tradition.  Her symbols are cups, water and fish.  Sága is an attendant of Frigg, is a Scandinavian Goddess whose name means ‘seeress’. Saga is a student of the Universe, ever watchful and ever instructing us about the value of keen observation. She is directly connected with the sign of Pisces, which governs artistic expression, psychic abilities and sensitivity toward others’ needs.

In artistic representations, Sage bears a long Viking braid, an emblem of womanhood and honor. According to the Eddas, Sága lives at Sinking Beach, a waterfall, where she offers Her guests a refreshing drink of inspiration from a golden cup. Later, Her name got applied to the sacred heroic texts of the Scandinavian people.

Tend your sacred journals today. Write about your path, your feelings, where you see yourself going, and where you’ve been. Saga lives in those words – in your musing, memories and thoughts – guiding them to the paper to inspire you now and in the future.

Invoke any of Sága’s attributes in your life today simply by practicing the art of observation. Really look at the world, your home, and the people around you. As you do, remember that little things count. Saga’s insight lies in the grain of sand and the wildflower as well as the stars.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

“Sága is one of the twelve major Goddesses, second only to Frigg according to Snorri in Prose Edda. She sits by the stream of memory and drinks from golden chalices at Her grand estate called Sökkvabekkr. Sökkvabekkr means ‘Sinking Beach’ and was a landscape of flowing waterfalls. There She and Oðin drink every day from golden chalices.  The liquid is either the waters of memory, or pehaps from the Well of Urðr.

Sága pours Odin a drink in an illustration (1893) by Jenny Nyström.

Her name means ‘seeress’ or ‘ominiscience’ and is connected with the Norse word for history – thus, some call Her the Goddess of history.  She is often assumed to be the sibyl or seeress who prophesizes Ragnarök.  Sága’s name is most likely directly related to the word saga (epic story) which in turn comes from the Old Norse verb segja ‘to say, tell’.

It has also been postulated that since Frigg knows everything about the present, and Sága knows all about the past, that Sága is an aspect of Frigg as Memory.

Sága’s genealogy is lost in the mists of time, and seems to belong to an older generation than that of the Vanir or Æsir, like Týr.  It is thought that She may have been an ancient sea deity akin to a Nerthus/Njörðr or Ægir/Rán combination, which is why sometimes She has been described as the Grandmother of Heimdall (who had nine mothers, the waves).

From Grímnismál
Oðin is describing the halls of the gods:

‘Sökkvabekkr, a fourth is called, and cool waves resound over it; there Oðin and Sága drink everyday, joyful, from golden cups.’ From the Poetic Edda, translated by Carolyne Larrington

From Gylfaginning
In answer to ‘Who are the  Asyniur?’

‘The highest if Frigg.  She has a dwelling called Fensalir and it is very splendid.  Second is Sága.  She dwells atSökkvabekkr, and that is a big place.’ From Snorri Sturluson’s Edda, translated by Anthony Faulkes

There is also some speculation that Iðunn and Sága might be one in the same.” [1]

 

 

Sources:

Ladysaga.tripod.com, “Saga“.

 

Suggested Links:

Krasskova, Galina. Exploring the Northern Tradition, “Saga“.

Paxson, Diana L. Hrafnar.org,Beloved“.

Wikipedia, “Sága and Sökkvabekkr“.


Goddess Fulla

“Fulla’s themes are abundance, protection, cycles and magic.  Her symbols are gold-colored items and hair.  The Teutonic sister of Frigg, Fulla visits us with fulfilment this year, just as her name – which means ‘fullness’ – implies. In legends, Fulla had long golden hair bound by a golden band. She guarded her sister’s enchanted casket of slippers, giving her an additional association as a protectress of magical tools.

In metaphysical traditions, hair is sometimes used in spells to empower them. In this case, to evoke Fulla’s protection over your magical tools, use a piece of your own hair. Pull one strand and adhere it in some manner to any tool that you want guarded from undesired energies. As you attach the hair, say words like:

‘Full, safeguard this <…………..>
even as you mindfully guarded Frigg’s treasures.’

If the hair ever falls off, re-create the spell.

The festival of Up-Hella-Aa has ancient origins and closely resembles Viking funeral rites, except that it’s meant for the season of winter! People on the Shetland Islands gather to watch the burning of a longship. The fire’s golden flame lights the way for spring’s and Fulla’s abundance. It also expels evil spirits.

In keeping with this custom, light as many lamps or candles as you can in your home, ideally yellow ones, and leave them on for a while to cast out any lingering darkness.”

(Patricia Telesco, “365 Goddess: a daily guide to the magic and inspiration of the goddess”.)

In Germanic mythology, Fulla (Old Norse, possibly “bountiful”) or Volla (Old High German)  is Frigg’s handmaiden and messenger. She is a virgin Goddess who is hardly mentioned in lore or in detail.  The only detail that I have found is that She has long hair that was worn loose with a golden band adorning her crown. This golden ring was a gift given to her by Nanna and Baldr. Based on her long loose hair and the presence of this golden band, she is believed to be a Goddess of fertility, although she is not one of the Vanir.

“Frigg and Fulla” by Ludwig Pietsch

Fulla is also guardian of Frigg’s little box, which contains all of her jewelry. Fulla was also in charge of protecting Frigg’s golden shoes, and was entrusted with all of Frigg’s secrets. Fulla and Frigg are sisters.

In a moment of inmense need, Fulla once invented an excuse to keep Frigg protected from the wrath of Her husband Odin. Fulla had conjured up a dwarf to enchant the guards with a spell so she could shatter Odin’s statue. Frigg stole all the gold from this monument that had been built in Odins’ honor. With this precious metal at hand, She ordered a dwarf to forge a necklace out of it. It is no secret to all in Asgard that Frigg has a passion for jewelry. [1]

Fulla is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources; the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson; and in skaldic poetry.  Volla is attested in the “Horse Cure” Merseburg Incantation, recorded anonymously in the 10th century in Old High German, in which she assists in healing the wounded foal of Phol and is referred to as Frigg’s sister. Scholars have proposed theories about the implications of the Goddess. [2]

There is a lovely prayer in the Gisla saga Surssonar offered by the hero shortly before his death:
“My Fulla, fair faced, the goddess of stones
Who gladdens me much, shall hear of her friend
Standing straight, unafraid in the rain of spears.” (Galina Krasskova, Exploring the Northern Tradition: A Guide to Gods, Lore, Rites and Celebrations from the Norse, German and Anglo-Saxon Traditions).

 

Suggested Links:

Paxson, Diana L. Hrafnar.org, “Beloved“.

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