OUR HOLY MADNESS

For wisdom, listen not to me but the word, and know that all is one..

…and that word is WODAZ.

The essence of a word, is found in its origin. What it ignites in the mind, and the mental recall associated with it. Here, is where the roots of all form lie, as dormant kernels to be collected and seeded. This requires focus.

Most minds these days are mercurial, and thus require alternate stimuli to effectively dictate a direction. For those of us out at Waldgang, the remedy for this, is the madness expressed by WODAZ.

This is what directs us.

All magic words are an innate part of loaded language. Evoking an emotional response, far beyond what it means on a baser level. Politicians use them, salesmen use them, and especially internet gurus – they use them, too.

WODAZ, is not the expression of addled minds. It is the possession of pure vision.

In truth, the word madness holds a transformative impulse by the root mey-, which produces an understanding of bonding, or a strengthening. This metamorphosis is the foremost manifestation when WODAZ is called upon in our rituals, and even in daily life.

WODAZ was fashioned over the course of centuries of use, from the weht, or wāt root. Meaning an inspired force, the same power that possessed the Germanic Wōdanaz; an archetype taken by fury, inspiration, and the will to create. By this word, we carve our way.

Kris Kershaw proclaimed in his tome-like work “The One-Eyed God”:

in fact, madness, to earlier peoples, did not mean loss of control; it meant control by someone else: inspiration or possession..

This possession, or control by someone else, is of the Higher Self. The version of oneself that is molded from the mud that suffocates us into subservience. The best version of yourself.

This form is the one many fear the most, as it threatens their sense of comfort, and proposed sense Self.

WODAZ is the key to that threshold beyond. Metamorphosis is not an easy feat. It takes a certain extremism, or dedication. It takes a sort of madness.

Madness of might, madness of spirit.

This is the word of our mission.

Now, say it with me…

WODAZ!

Rituals from the Mead Myth

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.

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DUAL FORM:

• 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.

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SOLITARY FORM:

• 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.

Rituals from the Mead Myth

THE BONDING RITUAL

After the war that was perpetrated by the first tribes of the Gods, a truce was struck. The ills between the Æsir and Vanir, were reconciled by having each member of the respective tribes spit into a bowl.

The culmination of this ritual, resulted in the creation of a being, in the shape of a man, whose name was Kvásir. This man was an intermediary figure between the two tribes. In another version, the truce between the Gods was finalized after an exchange of individuals from each tribe, each taking up an office in their new lands. He was upheld as the wisest man; whose only comparison was to Mimir.

Now, the name Kvásir holds some indication as to what this ritual may actually be about. The term kvass– is used as a cultural link between the Danish kvase, a liquid that results from crushing and the Slavic kvasu. Reconstruction into Proto-Germanic gives *hwassaz, later becoming Old Norse hvass, shows more of sharp definition, in relation to intellect; of sight and sound. There is additionally a Nynorsk term vass, with the same meaning as hvass.

Despite the linguistic dissolution, the kernel of this word remains the same between all these different stems in Northern Indo-European languages. Early kw-, gw-, and gwh- stems from Proto-Indo-European influenced these terms, and became the stems /kw/, /xw/, and /gw/ in Proto-Germanic. These are subtly interchanged in later Germanic languages, becoming /kv/, /hv/, and a voiceless /hw/.

Though it seems that in later literature, the –á particle in Kvásir has been dropped from common use, as noted by Guðbrandur Vigfússon:

As scribal abbreviations were common among Old Norse scribes, this may have simply been dropped because of being a misprint, or a misunderstood sign. The letter Q was also used for the /kw/, and /kv/ sounds, to differentiate from the letter K itself. This has since been discontinued in most Germanic tongues aside from English.

There are clear connections to the process of fermentation, which as a literal transition of substances and growth into another. This acts as a representation of a sacred bond. As a rousing force, the stage of fermentation in Alchemy, is often seen as a twofold operation – with the death of the twin being in conjunction, and the production of new life all together. Union for the sake of creation.

From legal cohesion to matrimony, there is an archetypal truth to this type of coupling; a stirring of two forms towards evolution. Distinct, yet coming together as one to be introduced as a new entity.

With the most common being the ceremony of marriage, it was meant to secure favor towards the future with a child. These are fundamentally transactional, as there was likely a specific exchange, and the resulting product was both a child – and shared/acquired resources.

This point is elucidated further when the kvá- root is observed. The root often holds a meaning concerned with union, in some faculty or another. As shown below:

    Kván, or queen; used broadly as any woman.
    Kvánarmál, or matrimonial affairs.
    Kvánbænir, or queen-boons; a courting process.
    Kvánfang, or queen-fetching; matchmaking.
    Kvánfang eiðr, also denotes marital oaths.
    Kvánga, kvángan, and kvángask, all mean for a man to take a wife.

The other uses for the root of kvá-, are when used for the words kvátra, kváðan, or kvára. One means a type of game played in Iceland during the 13th century – think ‘quarters’, and the other is used for a resin substance, from kvoða. The final word means to rattle. These are likely liturgical influences.

The use of these terms all denotes that kvá-, holds a principle of union. Hence, the use within the myth for the name of the fashioned figure that is the embodiment of the truce between the two tribes.

The initial scene of the Mead Myth shows an underlying form of a unifying custom; a transaction solidified by mingling the essences of two different people together. Kvásir is essentially the euhemerized element of the myth; a child of the two tribes, and thus represents a new inspired, fermented form. Kvásir was known for his intelligence and disseminated his solutions to many problems that were among the two tribes.

Some basic ritual elements have been drawn from contents in the story and may be used in accordance to one’s own tradition. This may be used as a varying form to the leikr rite of foster brotherhood, to still hostilities, or to solidify a specific pact between two parties.

The ritual is not complicated and does not have much flair. It may be enacted anywhere the participants choose. Meant to produce good tidings, it is more than just an exchange of items between two people. It develops a certain amount of gæfa, or luck, which is intrinsically linked with gifts and heartfelt exchange. Shared gæfa, is shared spirit.

Be fully assured before use of this ritual, as the sharing of gæfa, is to be upheld in all your dealings with the party you are bonding with. If broken, no matter by which party, both parties run the risk of a damaged gæfa.

For the sake of simplicity, only a dual form will be presented below.

Implements needed for this ritual:

  • Ritual bowl produced by (x) party; this is a bowl that no food has been eaten out of; of wood or metal.
  • Mead produced by (y) party.

The operation is as follows:

• A sacred space is designated by the two parties.

• The mead is poured by (y) party into the ritual bowl, being held by (x) party.

• The mead is passed until drained.

• The party who drains the bowl, spits into the bowl, and the opposite party does the same.

• The ritual bowl is then poured onto the earth by (y) party; hands are shaken as a sign of the bond.

• Gifts are then exchanged between the two parties.