“Just Ask The Gods…” But which ones?

Also- do not mess with those who worship

Also- do not mess with those who worship “meaner” Gods than you! 🙂

“What is considered catastrophe to the fly is victory for the spider.” -Unknown

So, you’re reading this- you are likely some-sort of Heathen or friend or family member of one looking for more information.  Sadly, I cannot give you more than opinion since all religion is honestly based on series after series of generations of UPG’s written down and retold- some recent, some over several thousands of years.

What is driving me to write today is the issue of worship and who is “worthy” verses “unworthy” of our attentions.

Actually, let me dissect that…. since when are humans, us fallible, mortal humans suddenly so confident that IF we believe in higher powers (or a higher power for my monotheistic friends) that WE can decide which super-powerful omni-powerful beings we associate with?  Why do we have the hubris to think we have a choice?

So, in almost every tribe, kindred, grove, hall, and coven there seem to be “rules” against who can/cannot be worshipped in a polytheistic context.  I understand that sometimes we want to concentrate on a certain pantheon or region of the world…but is it not understood that polytheism the world over works in archetypes?

If the Gods do not exist, then it makes no difference who we choose or dismiss…but if they do, and these are real, extant, beings of greater power and immortality, why do we run the risk of INTENTIONALLY offending them by listing their names on lists of Gods “Not to be Worshipped”?

If I were a God, I would intentionally intervene on those who would insult me in such a way.  Commonly, this is a problem that Lokeans THOUGHT we had cornered, but as more people from Northern/Eastern Europe are entering the community more vocally, I am seeing a great many people who worship not just the Rokkr, but the Jotunr as well- I see nothing wrong with this.  Others believe it “invites chaos”.

The funny thing about “chaos”…. it’s rather like an untamed horse, the more you attempt to confine it, the more destructive and adversarial it becomes to those who attempt to control it.

Life is messy, it is not orderly, it does not follow our rules, and “things turning out perfectly” is so rare that every one of us celebrates the few times that things go “just as we planned”.

We cannot “contain chaos”- all we can do is learn how to navigate its storms the best we can- that’s why the most primordial Gods the world over all seem to share a focus on Chaos in some manner- either controlling, restraining, or navigating it.  We all live in chaos, and no amount of wishing otherwise will make it less true.

Despite all precautions, there nothing that can protect you for all contingencies.   The only relief I know from Chaos is Death, and even Hel doesn’t guarentee peace considering there are so many different “after-life” options in Heathenry, some requiring more work than others. The options I know of are: staying in Helheim, dying in battle an going to Valhalla (not likely for most of us), being reincarnated into our own family line, becoming immortal ourselves by leaving a legacy, joining the household of a specific God (if invited to do so), staying as a “watchful ancestor” on Earth to keep an eye on our families, or becoming simply one with the Earth from which we came….there are likely countless other afterlives as well.

The greater problem in understanding is that we, as a species, overestimate our power to exert control over the universe… we pray to Gods and hope They will help us make sense of the world.  But how can we make sense of the world if we intentionally shut our eyes and our hearts to that which frightens us?  What if when we impose strict rules on worship, even in our Heathen pantheon that intentionally excludes certain Gods- that we invite their wrath for not being invited to the table?

Woten Himself is a dangerous and sly man, He has broken oaths, speaks in riddles, and has bewitched and beguiled in all stories but remains beloved, because, well, He’s a pretty lovable guy.

However, I also know a few people who worship Surtr as their patron which is even more verboten than Loki in almost every circle of American Heathenry unless you happen to be a biker.  Now, I see how the Jotunatru and Rokkatru are the “New Lokeans”.

As for me, I do not discriminate.  I am respectful at all gatherings I can attend and grateful for the invitations I receive, but sometimes, I worry for the “rules” that we make up.

Gods laugh when men make plans…  Why do we believe we can decide who is “good” or “evil” when both of those are simply value judgments based on our upbringing and current ideals?

As for me, I worry for the community- much more than people give me credit for, I think.  I worry that we are becoming dogmatic to the point of mirroring the existing religious organizational structures that have held human minds in captivity.

To some of us, all things have Gods- the God/desses of each type of flora and fauna don’t come in dualities.  The deity of the poison ivy plant is not more or less good than the God/dess of the English Ivy (actually, English ivy is more destructive to human-made structures).

If a God/dess comes into my life- I am thankful for being noticed, first of all- and I put trust in the fact that any immortal being would automatically possess enough wisdom to be above the notions of “good” and “evil”- since it is all subjective to the perspective of each individual observer.

The fact of the matter is- if the Gods exist, even the “worst” and most maligned are better than even the best of us.  By reinforcing dogma we are in fact closing doors to the knowledge that many heathens bring to the table.  A born-Jotunr from Sweden is about as reliably “evil” as a newly-converted American who worships Freyr for instance.

I have met kind and honorable Rokkrs and Jotunrs, I have met unkind and dishonorable Aesir worshipers.  Our Gods have their flaws, but even in their flaws, their perfection still is not rivaled by even the most  devout mortal…and luckily for us, our religion has caveats for the occasional mortal who DOES meet Godly standards by the example of Bragi or the Valkyrie.

I am sad to say writing has been and will likely continue to be difficult for me the next few months.  I am in and out of the fog of painkillers for a non-fatal condition which required surgery months ago.  Through kilometers of red tape I pass it seems almost daily- and THEN I get to take my painkillers at 5:30pm, after I know all offices are closed and there will be no more questions I need to answer, appointments I need to arrange, or people I need to speak intelligibly to.

But what I do know from my own research and UPG is this: Mengloth and Surtr are healing Gods with as much history as Eir (Mengloth taught Eir, if I am not mistaken).  My condition is simply just overgrown scar tissue from a prior surgery- it’s only steadily increasing pain I contend with, not a looming threat of early demise.

And what I can say about this experience is, when you are stranded in an ocean of hurt- beggers can’t be choosers when it comes to accepting help from whomever will offer it… and from this, I am asking kindly for people to reconsider, for their own sakes, how they decide to react to the Gods.

No one would dare insult Frigg or Freyja…. but to the Jotunr Gods who are even older and have several thousand years more of history it seems the USA has no problem saying “Don’t worship THEM”.

In closing, keep in mind that Tyr Himself is full Jotun, as are many of the Aes.   Not giving them their due is rather like telling Woten insults about his mother; you might not only offend the Jotunr, but the Gods you DO like might become offended as well unless you are really excellent at European Deity Genealogy!


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