Nine Noble Virtues

Nine Noble Virtues

The Odinic Rite lists the 9 Noble Virtues as Courage, Truth, Honor, Fidelity, Discipline, Hospitality, Industriousness, Self-Reliance, and Perseverance.

It would be hard to get much argument on any of these values from anyone. They simply and briefly encapsulate the broad wisdom of our Gods and ancestors.

Courage

In virtually every statement of values applied to Asatru, Courage is listed first. As Stephen McNallen has said, courage and bravery are perhaps the values which the Vikings are best known for. However, despite our history, few of us face such turmoil as a literal battle for ones life. In fact, I believe it might be easier to manifest courage in such a situation than to do so in the many smaller day to day occurrences in which courage is called for.

The most common of these occurrences for modern Pagans, is the courage to acknowledge and live ones beliefs. It is also, sadly, the one that we most often fail at. While we may often be full of the type of courage that would lead us to face a shield wall, many of us quake at the thought of the topic of religion coming up at the office or a friend asking what church we attend. We won’t offer easy answers, but we ask this: if you toast the courage of your ancestors to fight and die for what they believed in, can you trade away your religious identity for a higher salary or social acceptance?

In an essay on values there is also the question of moral courage. The way of Tyr is difficult to lose ones hand for ones beliefs but, Tyr thought the price worth paying. In a million ways modern society challenges our values, not just as Asatruar who are estranged from mainstream religious practice, but for religious people in an increasingly not just secular, but anti-religious culture. Values are also not in favor in modern society. Breaking or getting around the rules is encouraged to get ahead. Living honorably is simply too inconvenient. I think most people, Asatru or otherwise, find this repugnant, but the only way to change it is to have the courage to refuse to take part in it.

Truth

The second virtue, that of Truth, is the one that most led our kindred to embrace the Odinic Rite’s statement of values as our own. Early in our discussions, we decided that no matter what values we chose to hold out as our own, truth must be among them. It is a word that holds so much in its definition, and includes such a wide variety of moral and philosophical beliefs that we were all drawn to it as a simple statement of what we stood for.

At least one of the reasons we wanted to adopt it was the simple issue of honesty. As Bill Dwinnels said at a recent sumbel while toasting truth and honesty: if you don’t want people to know about something, don’t do it. Truth, in the sense of honesty, is essential to personal honor and also to any system or morality that is not based on rigid legalism. If one is to uphold an honor code, one must be brutally honest with oneself and with others.

Truth is also the Truth that comes with a capital T, the kind of Truth that one talks about in terms of religion or morality. It’s common to talk of different peoples having different “truths,” but it’s equally important to remember that while we acknowledge that each person or people has their own belief as to what Truth is or where to find it, there finally is a single Truth. This is not the Truth as we believe it, but ultimate Truth. While we may respect other people’s truths and seek our own, we must never forget our search for The Truth. Like the Holy Grail of Christian legend, it may never be ours to reach, but when we cease to search we perish.

Honor

Honor is the basis for the entire Asatru moral rationale. If anything comes out in the Eddas and Sagas it is that without honor we are nothing. We remember two types of peoples from ancient times: those whose honor was so clean that they shine as examples to us and those who were so without honor that their names are cursed a thousand years after they lived. Good Asatruar should always strive to be among the former.

However, honor is not mere reputation. Honor is an internal force whose outward manifestation is reputation. Internal honor is the sacred moral compass that each Asatruar and God should hold dear. It is the inner dwelling at peace which comes from living in accordance with ones beliefs and with ones knowledge of the Truth of what one is doing. It is something deeply personal and heartfelt, almost akin to an emotion. It’s a knowing that what one is doing is right and decent and correct.

In many ways while the most important of all the virtues it is also the most ephemeral in terms of description. It is all the other virtues rolled together and then still more. The best way I have found to describe honor is that if you are truly living with honor, you will have no regrets about what you have done with your life.

Fidelity

Fidelity is a word that is far too often defined by it’s narrow use in terms of marital fidelity. By the dictionary it simply means being faithful to someone or something. In marriage this means being true to ones vows and partner, and this has been narrowly defined as limiting ones sexual experience to ones spouse. While I have found this to be great practical advice, many treat fidelity as if there were no other ways in which one could be faithful or unfaithful.

For we Asatruar fidelity is most important in terms of our faith and troth to the Gods. We must remain true to the Aesir and Vanir and to our kinsmen. Like marriage, Profession (the rite in which one enters the Asatru faith, similar to Christian confirmation or Wiccan initiation) is a sacred bond between two parties; in this case an Asatruar and the Gods. In order for such a relationship to work, both must be honest and faithful to each other.

Asatru, although currently being reborn, is at its roots a folk religion and we also uphold the value of fidelity to the ways of our ancestors. This is why historical research is so important to the Asatru-folk: it is the rediscovering of our ancient ways and our readopting of them.

Discipline

In any discussion of the values of Asatru, discipline is best described as self-discipline. It is the exercise of personal will that upholds honor and the other virtues and translates impulse into action. If one is to be able to reject moral legalism for a system of internal honor, one must be willing to exercise the self-discipline necessary to make it work. Going back to my earlier criticism of society, if one rejects legalism, one must be willing to control ones own actions. Without self-discipline, we have the mess we currently see in our culture.

Looking at discipline in terms of fidelity, we see a close connection. Many Pagans go from faith to faith, system to system, path to path. Asatruar are much less likely to do this. The discipline of keeping faith with our Gods and the ways of our ancestors is part of our modern practice. In this way, we limit ourselves in some ways, but we gain much more in others.

Hospitality

Hospitality is simply one of the strongest core values at the heart of virtually every ancient human civilization. In a community/folk religion such as our own, it is the virtue that upholds our social fabric. In ancient times it was essential that when a traveler went into the world he could find some sort of shelter and welcome for the night. In modern times it is just as essential that a traveler find friendship and safety.

In our modern Asatru community, we need to treat each other with respect and act together for the good of our community as a whole. This functions most solidly on the level of the kindred or hearth where nonfamilial members become extremely close and look out for each other. It can mean hospitality in the old sense of taking in people, which we’ve done, but in modern times it’s more likely to mean loaning someone a car or a bit of money when they need it (that’s need, not want).

Part of hospitality is treating other people with respect and dignity. Many of our Gods are known to wander the world and stop in at people’s houses, testing their hospitality and generosity. The virtue of hospitality means seeing people as if they were all individuals with self-respect and importance. Or perhaps from time to time, they are literally the Gods in human form. This has profound implications for social action in our religion. Our response to societal problems such as poverty (that’s poverty folks, not laziness) is in many ways our modern reaction to this ancient virtue.

In terms of our modern community as a whole, I see hospitality in terms of frontier “barn raisings” where a whole community would come together and pool their resources. This doesn’t mean we have to forget differences, but we must put them aside for those who are of our Folk, and work for our common good.

Industriousness

Modern Asatruar must be industrious in their actions. We need to work hard if we are going to achieve our goals. There is so much for us to do. We’ve set ourselves the task of restoring Asatru to it’s former place as a mainstream faith and by doing so reinvigorating our society and culture. We can’t do this by sitting on our virtues, we need to make them an active part of our behavior. Industry also refers to simple hard work in our daily vocations, done with care and pride.

Here’s a few concrete examples. If you are reading this and don’t have a kindred, why not? Stop reading now. Go and place ads in the appropriate local stores, get your name on the Ring of Troth, Wyrd Network, or Asatru Alliance networking lists, and with other Pagan groups. Put on a workshop. Ok, now you’re back to reading and you don’t agree with what I’m saying here? Well, be industrious! Write your own articles and arguments. Write a letter to the editor and suggest this material be banned better that than passivity. Get the blood moving and go out and do it. That’s how it gets done. The Gods do not favor the lazy.

The same holds true for our non-religious lives. As Asatruar we should offer a good example as industrious people who add to whatever we’re involved in rather than take from it. We should be the ones the business we work in can’t do without and the ones who always seem to be able to get things done. When people think of Asatru, they should think of people who are competent and who offer something to the world.

This doesn’t just apply to vocational work, but to the entire way we live our lives. It is just as much a mentality. The Vikings were vital people. They lived each day to its fullest and didn’t wring their hands in doubt or hesitation. We should put the same attitude forward in all that we do whether it is our usual vocation, devotion to the Gods, or leisure time.

Self Reliance

Industry brings us directly to the virtue of Self-Reliance, which is important both in practical and traditional terms. Going back to the general notion of this article, we are dealing with a form of morality that is largely self-imposed and thus requires self-reliance. We rely on ourselves to administer our own morality.

Traditionally, our folkways have always honored the ability of a man or woman to make their own way in the world and not to lean on others for their physical needs. This is one of the ways in which several virtues reinforce and support each other. Hospitality cannot function if people are not responsible enough to exercise discipline and take care of themselves. It’s for those that strive and fail or need assistance that hospitality is intended, not for the idle who simply won’t take care of themselves.

In terms of our relationships with the Gods, self-reliance is also very important. If we wish the Gods to offer us their blessings and gifts, we must make ourselves worthy of them and the Gods are most pleased with someone who stands on their own two feet. This is one of the reasons for the Asatru rule that we do not kneel to the Gods during our ceremonies. By standing we acknowledge our relationship as striving and fulfilled people looking for comradeship and a relationship, rather than acting as scraelings looking for a handout from on high. It takes very little for a God to attract a follower, if worship simply means getting on the gravy train. We, as Asatruar, are people who can make our own way in the world, but who choose to seek a relationship with the Gods.

In mundane terms being self-reliant is a simple way to allow ourselves the ability to live as we wish to. In simple economic terms, if one has enough money in the bank one doesn’t need to worry as much about being fired due to religious discrimination. We can look a bigot in the face and tell him just where he can put it. It’s also nice to have something in the bank to lay down as a retainer on a good lawyer so we can take appropriate action.

On the other side of this is self-reliance in the sense of Henry David Thoreau, who advocated a simple lifestyle that freed one from the temptations of materialism. Again, here we are able to live as we wish with those things that are truly important. Religious people from all faiths have found that adjusting ones material desires to match one’s ability to meet them leaves one open for a closer relationship with deity and a more fulfilling life. While our ancestors were great collectors of gold goodies, they didn’t lust for possessions in and of themselves, but for what they stood for and could do for them. In fact, the greatest thing that could be said of a Lord was that he was a good Ring Giver.

Being self-reliant also means taking responsibility for ones life. It’s not just about refusing a welfare check or not lobbying for a tax exemption, but also refusing to blame ones failures on religious intolerance, the patriarchy, or an unfair system. The system may, in fact, be unfair, but it’s our own responsibility to deal with it.

In societal terms, we have become much too dependent on other people for our own good. As individuals we look to the government or to others to solve our problems and as a society we borrow billions from our descendants to pay for today’s excesses. Most problems in this world could be solved if people just paid their own way as they went.

Perseverance

The final virtue is Perseverance which I think most appropriate because it is the one that we most need to keep in mind in our living of the other values. Our religion teaches us that the world is an imperfect place, and nothing comes easy. We need to continue to seek after that which we desire. In this imperfect world there are no free lunches or easy accomplishments especially in the subjects we have set before ourselves. If we truly wish to build an Asatru community that people will hold up as an example of what committed people can do, then we must persevere through the hardships that building our religion is going to entail. We must be willing to continue on when we are pushed back. If one loses a job for ones religion, the answer is not to go back and hide, but to continue until one finds a vocation where one can more forward and live as an Asatruar should.

Finally we must persevere when we simply fail. If one’s kindred falls apart because of internal strife, one should go back and start over. Pick up the pieces and continue on. If nobody had done this after the disintegration of the Asatru Free Assembly, this would probably never have been written. We must be willing to continue in the hard work of making our religion strong not just when it is convenient and easy to do so, but when it gets hard, inconvenient, or just plain boring. To accomplish without striving is to do little, but to persevere and finally accomplish a hard fought goal brings great honor.

(Written by Lewis Stead from the Raven Kindred’s ritual book)

 

WOTC PODCAST

The Witches Spell for Thursday, May 18th – Spell to increase Spiritual Awareness

The Witches Spell for Thursday, May 18th

Spell to increase Spiritual Awareness

 

Tools needed:
Bowl of natural spring water
7 day Purple candle
Altar Fire (red) candle
Anointing Oil
Sandalwood Incense
Options: Rune symbols

 

On your altar, or your quiet and sacred place, take three deep breaths of air and begin to ground and center yourself. Light the altar candle and sandalwood incense. Ask the Lord and Lady to bless this spell with the highest good of all. Gently sprinkle the purple candle with some of the spring water, repeating:

 

“I cleanse thee oh ye magical tool in the name of the Lord and Lady, removing all negative and disharmonious energies casting them out into the ethers.”

 

Now, move the purple candle over the sandalwood incense repeating:

 

“I consecrate oh ye magickal tool in the name of the Lord and Lady, removing all negative and disharmonious energies casting them out into the ethers.”

 

Take the anointing oil in one hand and the purple candle in the other. Starting at the mid-point of the purple candle, moving UP in a docile [clockwise] and circular motion, anoint the candle and repeat three times:

 

“I anoint you in the name of the Lord and Lady as a magickal tool to be used in the aiding of my magick. I charge ye to increase my spiritual awareness that Love is the Key! Love is the Law!”

 

Now, starting at the mid-point again, moving DOWN in a docile and circular motion, anoint the candle and repeat three times again:

 

“I anoint you in the name of the Lord and Lady as a magickal tool to be used in the aiding of my magick. I charge ye to increase my spiritual awareness that Love is the Key! Love is the Law!”

 

Option: If you wish you may draw the appropriate rune symbols on the candle.

 

Lastly, repeat:

“As my will, so divine will be done. So mote it be! “

 

Spend of few moments quietly reflecting on the magick. Thank the Lord and Lady for their presence in your life. Use a candle snuffer to extinguish only the altar fire candle. Place the purple candle in a safe place as to not be disturbed. Allow it burn out completely. Every time you notice the purple candle burning, repeat quietly to yourself, LOVE is the Key! LOVE is the LAW!

 

 

Resource

Everything Under the Moon

 

WOTC PODCAST

Your Daily Tarot Cards (Notice “Cards”), Daily Influences, Ancient Symbol Card, Animal Spirit Guide, Wisdom of the Buddha & A Little BIt More Just For You

In this episode, you will find:

 

Your Daily Tarot Card for Today

Daily Love Tarot Card for Today

Money Tarot Oracle

 Past Lives Tarot

Your Daily influences

Your Ancient Symbol Card

Your Animal Spirit for the Day

Your Charm for Today

Daily Karmic Number

The Wisdom of the Buddha

A Little Thought from Me to You

See Everything But the Kitchen Sink!

 

WOTC PODCAST

Get A Jump On Tomorrow for May 19, Your Birthday Forecast & Everything But the Kitchen Sink

This episode included everything but the kitchen sink, lol!

If You Were Born Today, Your Forecast for the Year

The Cusp Energy of Taurus- Gemini

For Those Who Don’t Know Lady A explains what a “Cusp” is

Get A Jump On Tomorrow, Your Horoscopes for Friday, May 19th

and Last But Now Least

Your Zodiac Sign Can Help Heal Your Soul

Enjoy!

WOTC PODCAST

Wishing You & Yours A Very Bright & Beautiful Thursday Morn’! May The Goddess Bless You & Watch Over You During This Day!

What a glorious day to be alive! The Goddess has blessed us with a beautiful Summery morn’! I hope you are doing fine this morning and ready to get your day off with a little magick……..

 

Magic begins with love:
love of self and love of other.
Forget not your love of others:
family, friends, fellow travelers,
lest you forget your place
in a world of constant shifting
and changing allegiances;
we all need some grounding.
Remember to care for those in need
and refuse no hospitality
when it can be given freely.
Forget not your love of self:
needs, wants, desires, ambitions,
lest you forget your purpose
in a world which is lost
with no inherent meaning and
a common tragedy of values;
we all need some elevation
Remember to care for your you
and refuse no helping hand
that can be given freely.
Magic begins with love:
love of self and love of other.

“Closing Thoughts” from the book, Poetry, Songs, and Enchantments: A Pagan Sourcebook
Gwenhwyfar Rhwwttchen

This episode also includes

Your Daily Astronomy

About the Moon in Aquarius

The Aspects of the Moon in Pisces

In Your Great Big Beautiful Sky Tonight

Current Moon Phase

The Magick of Thursday

And….

Witches Affirmation

A witch is…

One who has power over her/his own life
One who makes his/her own rules, but can abide by the rules of Nature
One who refuses to submit to self-denial
One who recognizes no authority with greater esteem than her/his own, who is loyal to self
One who is untamed and tamed
One who transforms energy for the good of all
One who can be passionate about her/his ideals and values as they are changing
One who is explosive, whose intensity is like volcanoes, floods, winds, and fire
One who is disorderly and orderly
One who is ecstatic
One who alters reality
One who says, “I am a witch” aloud three times

“I am a witch”
“I am a witch”
“I am a witch”

Next Up

Your Horoscopes

WOTC PODCAST

Preparation for New Moon Gathering May 25, 2017 at 7:00 PM CT

If you will be attending out Coven’s New Moon ritual, there are some preparations you have to do before hand. Please have you candle prepared beforehand. If you choose to inscribe it the night of the gathering during that ritual there will be a two-minute window once the circle and Watchtowers have been called for meditation and raising as well as combining our energies. With our energies combined it will give the spell and your candle more power. The full ritual and any links you need will be up on Coven Life’s website by Thursday, May 18, 2017. If you have any questions please email Lady Beltane at ladybeltane@aol.com.

WHAT YOU WILL NEED:

1 White Taper Candle (After engraving your candle freeze it. Take it out of your freezer and place in a candle holder that it can stay in somewhere in your home after gathering for at least two hours before our gathering begins to allow it to thaw at and to room temperature otherwise, it may explode possibly causing you or your home harm.) Do not place the candle in the microwave to defrost it will explode!

Think hard on spiritual goal that can come to fruition or be working at the next Full Moon

Atheme or Sharp Item to engrave candle

One word engraved on candle to state your goal or intention

Working candle magic is one of the easiest ways to work a long-term spell. A long-term spell includes any that take more times of doing it than once for you to get the out you desire from the spell.

I will have a spell prepared to empower all our candles initially.

Below is the spell you will say each day you light your candle:

Hecate I call upon you as I light this candle to release the goal inscribed.

After your candle is lit rep=eat this spell three times:

Candle burning bright

Help me reach my goal with all the power you hold.

Bring the power and energy from the coven’s ritual forward with all its might.

Do not let my intention you contain fold.

So mote it be (or however you end your spells.)

Copyright 2017 Lady Beltane.  This may not be reprinted in any way without express permission from the author.

Coven Life’s Coven New Moon Ritual for Thursday, May 25, 2017 AT 7:00 PM CT

New Moon Ritual

WHEN:

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Chatroom Opens at 7:00 PM CT

CIRCLE STARTS AT 7:15 SHARP

Please find time converture on lefthand side of Coven Life’s Home page

WHERE:

Coven Life’s Chatroom

Please find login information on left hand side of Coven Life’s Homepage

Our Watchtowers and Spirit this month were written and will be called by some of our Adepts – Maia and Alaiyna – and onr our novices – Armer. Please leave a comment thanking and or letting them know the great job they did. Thsnk you.

This is the time to pick a spiritual goal that you will work on to come to fruition on the next full Moon or it maybe something you want to work from one new Moon until the next one.

Maia Air:I call upon the watchtower of the east and the element of air. Please share your energy and protect those inside this circle and out.

Alaiyna– Fire: “I call upon you Fire, powers of courage and passion, and welcome you into this circle of love and light. We ask that you help strengthen our resolve as we move forward this night.”
Armers: Water: I call upon you Water, Power of Life and Blood, and welcome you into this circle of love and light.
We ask you give flowing strength and energy to Do our
will this night.

Maia – Earth I call upon the energy of the element of earth to protect our circle and let harm come to none inside or out.

Alaiyna – Spirit: “I call upon you Spirit, the binding force of all life across space and time, and welcome you into this circle of love and light. We ask that you help guide us as we move forward this night.”

Lady Beltane – Hail Hecate and Mother Earth cast this circle with me three times three to protect all who have entered here in perfect love and perfect trust. Let no energy we raise be of any harm to us or any living thing outside our circle. We now stand in a plane between planes. We stand outside of time. One with the Universe.  Welcome, all to our circle of love and light! May the Goddess Hecate bless you this night of the Crone with her wisdom, honor, and love.

We will take two minutes to meditate on our goal and to raise energy and power within our circle.

Everyone – I ask now that you share your name and goal with the coven. After you have done so please light your white candle you have inscribed with the rune or one word that describes your goal.

Place your power hand around your candle as close to where it and the holder connect. Repeat the spell three times while running you hand up your candle being careful not to get burnt on hot wax or the flame. I will type in the spell three individual times.

Lady Beltane – Hecate we call up you as the Goddess of witches and wisdom in the dark of this night

To empower our candles and spirit with our word

To let our goals grow fully and with all their might.

Let our goal not fly away like a bird.

So Mote It Be!!

Everyone – So Mote It Be!

Lady Beltane – Hecate we offer you this wine with our gratitude and thanks.  Mother Earth we off you this bread with our gratitude and thanks.

We will take two minutes to ground the excess power we have left in our circle into Mother Earth for her use in healing. During meditation, Lady Beltane will go make offerings to the Goddesses.

Maia Air – I dismiss the watchtower of the east and the element of air to go back from where they came with my thanks for their energy and protection.

Alaiyna – Fire – We thank you fire for lending your energies for our work here tonight. Return from where you came and let no harm come to anyone inside or outside this circle

Armers:  Lords of the Watchtower of the West, Lords of Water I thank thee for attending this rite, I bid you hail and farewell.

Maia – Earth I dismiss the Watchtower of the north to go back to wherever they came from with my thanks for their protection and energy.

Alaiyna – Spirit – We thank you spirit for lending your energies for our work here tonight. Return from where you came abd let no harm come to anyone inside or outside this circle.”

Lady Beltane – I bring us back into a real time. I bring us back to the plane of Mother Earth. Hecate I ask you to open this circle with me three times three. We thank you, Goddesses Hecate and Mother Earth for your, wisdom, strength and power you have lent to our circle this night. The circle is open but not broken go in peace to harm none all who have entered here.

Our Circle is finished but the gathering is not. Please stay and get to know our guests a little better. I invite our guest to stay a while if you can to visit with us. Please ask any question you may have about our coven and/or the work done in our circle tonight.

Ritual is Copywright by LAdy Beltane 2017. All rights reserved.

 

 

HEKATE (or Hecate)

HEKATE (Hecate) was the goddess of magic, witchcraft, the night, moon, ghosts and necromancy. She was the only child of the Titanes Perses and Asteria from whom she received her power over heaven, earth, and sea.

Hekate assisted Demeter in her search for Persephone, guiding her through the night with flaming torches. After the mother-daughter reunion became she Persephone’s minister and companion in Haides.

Three metamorphosis myths describe the origins of her animal familiars: the black she-dog and the polecat (a mustelid house pet kept by the ancients to hunt vermin). The dog was the Trojan Queen Hekabe (Hecuba) who leapt into the sea after the fall of Troy and was transformed by the goddess. The polecat was either the witch Gale, turned as punishment for her incontinence, or Galinthias, midwife of Alkmene (Alcmena), who was transformed by the enraged goddess Eileithyia but adopted by the sympathetic Hekate.

To read the rest of this article please click on this link: http://www.theoi.com/Khthonios/Hekate.html