The Blood Ritual
Invited to their home for a private discussion, the Dwarves Falarr and Galarr murdered the wise Kvásir. They first poured his blood into two vats called Són, and Boðn. Then, poured both into a final pot they called Óðrǿrir. By this slaughter, the sacred Mead was formed.
A curious selection of very precise names litters this part of the Mead Myth. The murder of Kvásir by these Dwarves is eerily reminiscent of the practice of catching the blood of a sacrificial animal in a hlautbolli, or blood-bowl, as mentioned in the Icelandic Eyrbyggja saga.
The names of these two Dwarves mean a demand, and yeller, or enchanter. Which indicates to me, that there may be a hidden idea within this story, as the names of the murderers represent ritual components, anthropomorphized for the telling of a story.
The first being a demand of the operant, and the second being the voicing of that demand by the operant.
While the names of the Dwarves represent the primary prerequisites for a ritual, the vats themselves represent the actions of the ritual itself:
The first vat is called Sacrifice. The word is akin to the term sóa, as heard in the Hávamál. Used in the form of a ritual, it pulls from the terms Sónardreyri, the Sacrificial Blood and the object being sacrificed, the Sónargöltr, the Sacrificial Boar. This was done at Yuletide, and the term Sónn, means to sound. During this celebration, it was customary to sound off one’s vows, or oaths, as the heitstrenging demanded.
This is a twofold requirement; sacrifice is to be given accompanied by sound.
The second vat is called Bidding. Akin to prayer but based more on a transactional relationship with a person, or a God. From biðja, the function of this term can be seen in at bíða byrjar, to bid for a wind.
This is to give a message to the whomever you are entering into a transaction with, or entreating.
The pot that was used to hold the remainder of the blood, was known as Furiously-stirred. From a combination of óðr, and hræri; but in this spelling, the past tense of róa, rørir, these words present culmination of the ritual – the stirring of honey into the blood, blending the two into the liquid now known as Mead.
This is the product of the sacrifice, the furious inspiration that is felt upon the completion of such a raw action.
The Mead itself, is a substance that holds a divine status, and it has been said that ok sá er af drekkr verðr skáld ok frǿðamaðr, “and so is a drink worthy of skálds and wisemen” – those that partake, are upheld as sages. The Dwarves, after the slaughter, had said that Kvásir perished because of his exponential wisdom. Clearly, the drinking of the Mead, was a metaphor for attainment of spiritual gnosis.
In the case of this story, the Dwarves are the operants of ritual slaughter to receive gnosis of a kind. The aspect of an operant being furiously shaken after such a ritual, indicates their particular use.
There are key points of structure here, that may be applied as a format for our spiritual operations. The operant, having a specific demand, initiates a ritual with the corresponding components:
• Sacrifice – the blood is crucial in this action; it serves as the foundational medium between you and the Gods. This is to be from an animal.
• Sound – the action of drumming, or a moving song affects the human brain in such a way that it initiates a trance state, this separates the operant from the rest of the world, and focuses the immediate psychosphere. This also projects the intent of these actions further into the world around them.
• Bidding – this is a vocalized direction of intent, either used in a verseform, or a straight-forward declaration of your demand.
The combination of these elements, follow the Law of Similarity formula in sorcery, that (x) begets (x); a common understanding in many folkways. The objective of this ritual type, would be to give something in order to get a thing – the ancient principle of “a gift for a gift”.
In almost all religions, this principle is recurring as expiation. Some worshippers are rewarded with revelation through prayer, others with victory in battle, or more often, an increase in their yearly yield.
This is different from the gæfa concept, as it is more of an action done for oneself to gain from, rather than the unification of two opposite forces into one new spiritual body. Sorcerous acts are naturally self-serving but, can yield worldly benefits to all parties involved in these types of rituals.
I have provided two ritual formats for implementation, one in its dual form, and the other for a solitary practitioner.
• Both (x) and (y) parties produce equal funds to purchase and dedicate an animal for sacrifice.
• Both parties bring this animal to a designated sacred space.
• (y) party states intent/demand before the presiding power, while (x) party produces either song, mantra or drumming to invigorate the sacred space.
• (y) party will then state the intent/demand once more as they complete the sacrifice;
▪ If singing, (x) party still maintaining their song or mantra, if assisting with completion. If drumming, (x) party must state intent/demand while maintaining drumming during the completion of the sacrifice by (y) party.
• The blood is to be caught in a bowl, or cup, and both parties anoint themselves with the blood of the animal; any witnesses are also anointed.
• Both parties prepare the remains for use; entrails are for the terrestrial guardians of the sacred space, and meat is to be used for later consumption.
▪ Bones/hides are to be cleaned and re- used as ritual tools, and/or embellishment of the sacred space.
• The operant brings the dedicated animal to the designated sacred space.
• The intent/demand is stated, and a suitable song or mantra is created to send off the spirit of the animal.
• When the operant is charged, the song/mantra is maintained as the sacrifice is completed.
• The blood is to be caught in a bowl, or cup, and the operant anoints himself.
• The operant states intent/demand once more.
• The operant prepares the remains for use; entails are for the terrestrial guardians of the sacred space, and meat is to be used for later consumption.
▪ Bones/hides are to be cleaned and used as ritual tools, and/or embellishment of the sacred space.