Tag Archive | folk practices

The historical way to establish sacred space for a ritual

In terms of establishing sacred space for a ritual, if you wish something more historical (not that there is anything wrong with modern innovations since any religion must change and grow to remain relevant) you can use the Germanic concept of land taking. To do this you take burning fire around the boundary of the space you are claiming. Historically this was done outside so it was a torch, but for modern purposes a candle can be used. You can ask Thor to make the space you are claiming to be hallowed (made holy).

This need not be limited to a circle, square sacred spaces are probably more common in the historical context. Also if it is an outside space regularly used for rituals, historically they put a series of posts around the space and hung ropes between each post, as a way to mark what is the ritual area. Also in regular outside spaces they piled up some rocks and any liquid items from the offerings got poured over these stones (blood, mead, ale, drink of any sort).

In the historical context any ritual sacred space is considered a frithstead. No acts of violence may be done within a frithstead, and all beings within the frithstead have to leave any conflict outside. Properly done ritual offering of an animal (animal sacrifice) is not considered an act of violence since when they historically did this correctly they did it in a way that the animal did not realize it was being killed, and in a painless way. Later the animal was used as food. Since most us modern people don’t raise our own animals and don’t know the proper ways to kill them for food, animal sacrifice is generally no longer done in modern Heathenism. Offering drink and already prepared foods is perfectly acceptable as an alternative.

Common Modern Folk Practices that are Heathen in Origin

1 Tooth-Faerie – Done as a sacrifice to honor the Alfar & Frey, there king, in thanks for the growth of the kids teeth to come.

2 Christmas-Tree – Actually a Yule practice to represent Yggdrasil. The ornaments are sacrifices made to the gods. Probably (maybe; just a theory) also given to appease Odin and the wild hunt. Notice how many ornaments are human like? Maybe this was so the wild hunt would take these symbolic people instead of real people.

3 Wishing-Well (Fountain) – Is a magickal practice used to place something into the 3 sacred wells (Hvergelmir, Wyrd, Mimir) so that it may manifest into ones Wyrd. Like as an example. If one wanted a car they could toss a matchbox car into a body of water while wishing for a new car and picturing what kind of car they want (and the tiny toy car should be one that reflects this model).

4 Piggy-Bank – Represents Frey’s golden Boar. Frey is the god of fertility and abundance (which is associated with money in modern times).

5 Drinking-Toasts – This is merely the modern survival of the sumbel ritual.