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Beginnnings!--A New Year Awaits! . . . This article is presented as a monthly series of Northern Insights articles on this preview page. Every month, a new article will be posted for students and visitors to the Denali Institute web page. These articles have been previously published over the years as feature articles in our monthly True North journal. Please check back regularly for new postings.
Spiritual Genealogy--Lo, there do I see my Father . . . We are keeping our October preview article posted for the benefit of all who are interested in learning more about ancestral stream dynamics within the Northern tradition.
Good "Northern" LuckNot Just For the Irish . . . Our March preview article has been so popular and frequently visited, we are keeping it open for the benefit of all who are interested in bringing more Luck into their life.
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A New Year Awaits!
Whatever you can do, or dream you can,
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.
Johann von Goethe
18th Century German Mystic
January is a time to contemplate BEGINNINGS. The New Year brings a fresh sheet of unmarked time, waiting for your tracks to show up on its surface. What new beginnings do you need to make in this month to bring you the desires, dreams, and goals you have planned for the upcoming twelve months. What old habits do you need to leave behind (sacrifice) to provide yourself the refreshing lift of energy required to change your life?
The ancient folk of the North were great "beginners" for they had a whole world of unexplored territory to range outward upon. Vast regions of unpopulated primeval wilderness on land and the uncharted seas at their doorsteps served as great challenges to their physical prowess. At the same time, the vast spaces on land and the depths of the uncharted oceans were feared for being the dwelling place of many fearsome mythical creatures. Now that the entire surface of Earth is mapped and charted by sophisticated modern technology, it would appear that the great adventures that made heroes of the ancient Northmen and women are long gone.
But to think that way would be a mistake, for the adventures of modern life surround us with as much uncharted space and great mystery as those of the ancient world. Instead of in the physical world however, modern adventuring takes place in the uncharted realms of the mind. Students of the mysteries, like you, understand that it takes as much initiative and daring to adventure in mind as it did for the ancient Vikings to strike out on the dangerous oceans in their small sailing craft. Can we learn lessons from them about overcoming fear and taking the initiative to begin our new adventures in this coming year? Surely, yes.
The ancient Vikings got started on their explorations when they ran out of arable land to sustain them in Northern Europe. They also journeyed away from home because of oppressive political conditions. Iceland was discovered and settled more as an escape from untenable conditions in the homeland than from a simple desire to explore the unknown. The harsh conditions of the Northern latitudes were as much responsible for the initiative and motivation of the ancient adventurers as was their desire to learn of new lands. We are no different today.
While self-starting is held as an ideal in our culture, the fact remains that most self-starters get their initial impulse from a pressure point or a serious crisis in life. If you read motivational publications, you will see that nearly all the examples of initiative begin with the person overcoming a hardship or handicap that came from some previous existing negative condition, either from within or arising from outer circumstances.
If you look at these stories and at your personal experiences in your life to date, you will see that nearly all beginnings take place when the conditions of life in the present are so unsatisfactory that the discomfort prompts you to move forward into new, unexplored realms of activity. I like to describe it this way . . .
When the pain (discomfort) of moving forward is less than the pain of standing still, you will become motivated to new activity to undertake new ventures, to explore the unknown.
There are several ways in which this formula can be used as a growth tool in life. The first way is the least desirable but the most frequently encountered. Most people in our world skillfully hide from the discomfort of the present through denial, increased tolerance for the pain of the present or through escape into other bad habits (substance abuse, overeating, etc). They are unconscious of the power curve coming their way as life prepares to issue a strong "wake-up call" in the form of calamity. Once the calamity occurs, they mobilize their magnificent human potential to "fix" the emergency problem and thus initiate new activities in new realms unthought of before the emergency. These examples make up the majority of the success stories you read in the media every day.
A BETTER WAY
Here in Southcentral Alaska, we are in one of the most severe earthquake zones on the planet. Because of this, we realize (as Californians do also) that we would rather have a series of small scale earthquakes to relieve stresses and pressures rather than no ground movement for several years. We know that a series of small earthquakes means that the huge plates deep in the earth under our feet are relieving pressures that would later build up into a disastrous quake experience
So it is with this formula for successful living. You can use it as a tool to achieve great accomplishments in life, spiritually and physically. The secret is to anticipate the evolutionary momentum of life and take the initiative to change in small increments, before any severe back-pressures build up.
That is why this discussion of your beginnings for this coming year is so important. By taking small steps to move from minor discomfort in the present, you can avoid serious have-to adjustments later in life.
On a side note, whenever we share that story of earthquakes in Alaska, students will ask us about the 1964 Alaska Earthquake. Yes, we were here for the largest earthquake on the North American continent which registered 9.2 on the Richter scale. Interestingly, it wasn't the immediate intensity that caused the damage as much as it was the intensity combined with the length of the quake. The quake lasted for about 5 minutes (time that on your watch!). As the minutes passed, the increasing momentum caused the ground to visibly roll and heave like waves on the sea. Only the most flexible of buildings withstood the stress. Up here the land sank 5' or more, and as the shock wave passed though the North American continent, the Washington D.C. area rose and fell by 2" and the Houston area by 4". Tidal action was created in the Gulf of Mexico and the water level in a 400' well in Wisconsin fluctuated 12' at the time of the quake.
As a student of life's mysteries, you are already following the upside of this formula by taking steps to learn new ways to flow with the evolutionary curve of Life in advance of any back-pressure. However, even the best of us encounter obstacles at some time or another on the path. Here are some ways you can anticipate and deal with them so they will have minimal impact...
The Need for Action. There is an old saying in the motivational field, "Don't wait for the spirit to move you, take action and you move the spirit." Action is the one thing you can do to overcome any procrastination or lethargy that you may be experiencing in your present environment. In other words, the best thing you can do to get started on your new venture is to BEGIN!
You can't steer a bike or a car without having some forward momentum. In the mental realms, Beginnings have a way of providing the flow of energy you need to fully evaluate your intended course of action. Sure, you need to plan ahead, but after contemplating all the consequences there is no substitute for action.
Do you realize that the most powerful locomotive in the world can be held in its tracks with a single one inch block of wood in front of each of its eight drive wheels? Yet, that same locomotive moving a 100 miles an hour can crash through a wall of steel reinforced concrete five feet thick. That's the way you are when you're in action. But, you must begin to buildup your own head of steam by taking small action steps towards your intended goals for this coming year.
A Sense of Urgency. You get to the top of any endeavor by getting started, and a sense of urgency about getting started is most necessary. Those who truly understand the little formula we revealed earlier cannot help but develop a persistent urge to keep moving forward. They know that the best protection against surprise events is to keep moving in advance of one's personal learning curve in life.
Once you've started, it is not hard to keep going. If the job is difficult, or unpleasant, do it immediately. The longer you wait, the more difficult and frightening it will become. It's like taking your first swimming lessons at the deep end of the pool. The longer you wait, the less desire you have to jump in the water to learn a new skill that could save your life in the future.
Keep Moving! What does a garden have to teach you about this principle? In a prolific garden, as long as the vegetables are green, they are growing. When they get ripe, they start to rot. In life you retain the zest for living by constantly seeking to put into your mind things that will result in growth. You are already doing this with your readings in runes and Northern lore. However, in the mysteries, there is no room for overripe fruit! You must always "stay green!"
When once a decision is reached and execution is the order of the day, dismiss absolutely all cares for responsibility and care about the outcome.
Our main business is not to see what lies dimly in the distance, but to do what lies clearly at hand.
No one gets very far unless he or she accomplishes the impossible at least once a day.
If one advances confidently in the direction of his or her dreams and endeavors to live a life which he/she has imagined, he/she will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.
Henry David Thoreau
Perhaps there is no more important component of character than steadfast resolution.
Do the thing you fear and the death of fear is certain.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Early shall he rise who rules few servants, and set to work at once. Much is lost by the late sleeper, wealth is won by the swift.
High One (Odin in the HÃ¡vamÃ¡l)
RUNES TO HELP YOU BEGIN . . .
Uruz. When starting new ventures no matter how large or small, the energies of Uruz are most applicable. Uruz (rune #2) contains the most vital of energies. Within it is the unconscious drive for manifestation, the "will to form." It represents the primal energies behind all forms of nature. Most runesters know Uruz to be the healing rune, helping to restore the body to its original energy pattern in the process of self-healing. However, the "will to form" also can provide powerful archetypal shaping energies to drive the formation of your ideas in the etheric that will eventually manifest in the physical.
Uruz is the symbol of the wild bovine, a reminder that cattle were once wild animals. The energy of Uruz is indestructible, rudimentary, raw, primal and unbelievably strong. It provides a great boost to your self-starting requirements in life.
Thurisaz will awaken your will to action. It will also help you counter any resistance you experience. Any time you begin a new venture, you create resistance in the universe (Nauthiz). That is the law of action and reaction that applies in mental realms as well as in the physical world. The attributes of Thurisaz are fully covered in Seeker Lesson #4 in our Rune Master study program.
Fehu, a favorite rune of many runesters, is always used when you desire to apply mobile force into any portion of your life experience. Fehu is the luck rune, the money rune and the rune of the magical Northern hamingja. But more than that, Fehu represents directed expansive force-the energy you need to support your new adventure with good (Northern) Luck! Combined with the above two runes, you have a powerhouse trio that will not only help you "begin" your adventure, but will also help you bring it to manifestation.
Others . . .
Sowilo will bring the power of the sun and the lightning bolt into your new beginnings.
Eihwaz is the rune of spinal, "Kundalini fire" and when occurring in a divination reading, it indicates you should take the risk and begin the venture in question
Ansuz helps you quicken your creative inspiration and your mental abilities.
Lo, there do I see my Father
Lo, there do I see my Mother, and my Sisters and my Brothers,
Lo, there do I see the line of my people back to the beginning,
Lo, they do call to me, they bid me to take my place among them,
In the Hall of Valhalla,
Where the Brave, they live forever.
Viking Jarl Buliwyf
(in the movie
The 13th Warrior, based on the book by Michael Crichten)
At the end of this month, we will observe a celebration of Samhain (Ancestor's Night, All-Hallows Eve) and enter into the traditional family time of the year, when you and your loved ones will gather together physically, and if not, in treasured memories of past gatherings.
At the same time, we are in the midst of a great surge of interest in the field of genealogy, the tracing of family roots back as far as records can be researched. As a runic practitioner, you should not only be searching paper trails (which may take you back into the 1800s and even the 1700s, if you are lucky) but also be addressing "spiritual" genealogy which will carry you back a thousand years or more in your ancestral stream using the energy of the runes and your Elder Northern tradition.
First off, let's talk about what you can do right here and now to discover more about your family roots.
STEP 1: In the next few weeks, develop a list of those things you want to know about your family tree that you can ask your relatives when you have the occasion over the holidays to talk or write to them. You'll be surprised as to how much you can learn of your family tree by just this exercise.
But, I recommend you do not leave this exercise to chance. Write down your questions, and write down their answers. I also do not recommend tape recordings of conversations as your first choice, unless you plan to transcribe the recordings within a few days. Tape recordings sit around for years on the shelf, and by the time your children will want to access them, Ill bet there won't be a tape machine around (it'll be digital voice recordings or something newer).
I recommend you write down your questions in advance and write down the answers in brief shorthand type notes that you can flesh out later. Prepare a special journal to contain your notes. Write as if you were writing, not to your children or grandchildren who know you already, but to the third generation away.
STEP 2: Draw out a family tree diagram so that the linkages are obvious. I will bet you have a family tree in your baby book that ends with YOU. Now, it's time to give this same gift to your descendents.
STEP 3: Don't hesitate to make contact with your older relations this season. In many cases, whole family histories disappear with the unexpected passing of an elder in your family. If you have a "skeleton in the closet" between you and an elder, now is the time to deflate that energy with a sincere inquiry into their past and what they can remember of the generations before them.
After this effort, if you choose to do so, you can begin to search back beyond your living relatives and their memories of past generations. The Internet is the resource of choice for genealogists-just enter the term "genealogy" in a search engine and you will find hundreds of web pages offering quality services at no charge. You can initiate a search in your own name. You are limited only by your imagination and the time it takes to follow through on each lead.
Spiritual genealogy begins where the physical research leaves off, back beyond the past century or two of family records. Fortunately, you are in a spiritual tradition that not only includes but recognizes exploration of ancestral streams to benefit your present life in Midgard, as well as to reveal the variety of experiences you have stored in your family treasure box.
To be clear, we are NOT talking your personal rebirth or reincarnations within the ancestral stream. While you can expect to have incarnated more than a few times in the broad ancestral stream that you now belong to, we are paying special attention to the OTHER souls that have been weaving in and out of your ancestral stream that have left traces of their energy in your inheritance.
The runes that quicken your consciousness to awareness of your ancestral stream are:
Othala (primarily) as rune of the Kin-Fetch and Disir.
Ehwaz as rune of your Fylgja or Fetch (which contains your personal wyrd/orlog and connects to your Kin-Fetch).
Tiwaz to restore inheritances which are justly yours.
Four questions to quicken your mind in meditation:
1. Where did I get my spiritual "genes" to explain my interest and pursuit of esoteric mysteries and runic tradition, especially if none of my present family exhibit such tendencies? Think deeply on this runesters, for this question will lead you back to the ancestors that practiced the tradition openly. NOTE: you may have to leapfrog back and bypass those ancestors who were (are) dogmatic in their religious beliefs and/or fearful of straying from strong Christian dominance (don't underestimate this element).
2. Who else "owned" my name?
3. What traits have I inherited that are certainly "family?"
4. Are there any "like-minded" ancestors alive today in a distant thread of my family stream that I have yet to meet in this lifetime?
NOTE: Those of you who are of non-European ethnic heritage, consider:
(1) your fascination with symbols and a Yggdrasil-type cosmology from a similar type ancient tradition that has since disappeared from your present ethnic heritage; or
(2) leaping back to a thread of your ancestral stream that was part of or dealt with Northern cultures; as well as
(3) your past incarnations that may have been in Northern realms or overlapped with the Northern tradition.
We provide in-depth coverage of ancestral stream dynamics integral to our tradition in Rune Master lessons, as well as a full chapter in our Rune Mentalist Skills book which is further described on this site.
Good "Northern" Luck
Not Just For the Irish
It's unfortunate that a useful and practical metaphysical truth gets relegated to a once-a-year celebration of folklore particular to only one cultural group. The "Luck of the Irish," is celebrated on St. Patrick's Day, and rightly so. But it's not just to the Irish nor to the Irish Church that "Luck" belongs. It's part of the weave of Northern lore, and the Irish have held on to it the longest, to their everlasting credit.
"Luck" is a uniquely identified energy concept within the Elder Northern tradition, and recognized throughout the Northern lands. Far more than the modern definition of luck to the gambler at the race track, or in the casino (although even in this extreme, the principles apply), Northern "Luck" can be identified, quantified (somewhat), and shaped (somewhat) according to individual will.
It is true, in mainstream consciousness, that luck is "90% preparation meeting 10% inspiration." But to a Northern practitioner, the concept of Luck has much greater potential for practical use.
Just what is "Northern" Luck? In the Northern tradition, Luck is defined as mobile force. The universal energy force that fuels Luck in Northern lore is Ond, or vital breath. It is roughly comparable to chi, prana, orgone, nous, and manitu energies in other traditions.
However, in Northern lore this universal energy is given a uniquely individualized identity. When specifically addressed as the energy within an individual, this energy is called megin. Megin is defined as a personal force distinct from physical power or strength, the possession of which assures success and good fortune. It equates to what we call "charisma," but more than just everyday charm, popularity, or ability to persuade.
Megin is stored in an energy construct within the aura of a human being called the "hamingja." Numerous references are made to the hamingja of Northern heroes and kings in the sagas, but it is not easily defined. Briefly, the hamingja is an integral part of one's personal aura which gives the entire field greater potency and much more flexibility for workings of human will. Think of it as being similar to the air sac of Scottish bagpipes. The hamingja serves to concentrate one's personal megin much as the bag in the Scottish pipes acts to store air for future melodies. Consider the hamingja a reservoir for the storage of your megin energies, which in turn becomes your Luck.
Through study of the Northern mysteries, we know that, (1) the walls of the hamingja can be strengthened using the rune Elhaz, (2) its capacity to hold energy can be increased (using the runes Fehu and Elhaz, and (3) it can be tasked to discharge its energy in a "sending" under the will of an illumined mind (using the rune Fehu). The hamingja is an extremely important tool of the mind for the Northern practitioner to become adept in using.
MANAGING YOUR LUCK
Making a relatively simplistic assumption, we can say that the amount of Luck in your life is the equivalent to the amount of megin concentrated in your hamingja or psychic energy reservoir.
It is common that people experience the best of their Luck in the early years of life. That is when the hamingja is fresh and full of megin that is rightfully yours from past life accumulations and through your share of the energy "treasury" provided by your family ancestral stream. Because of this, early in life things happen naturally and effortlessly and you experience any number of "lucky" synchronicities.
However, as the years go by the level of the energy in your reservoir goes down as you go through life passages, and the skeletons accumulate in your mental closet. If your hamingja is not refilled with fresh megin energies, your Luck goes down also. I am sure every reader will relate to this statement to some degree or another.
If you have health problems, you can be sure that your personal megin will be used to counter bodily diseases and other health emergencies. This is an unintended depletion of your reservoir of megin energies which only serves to lower your relative level of Luck. While all the megin stored in your hamingja is instantly available in the event of an emergency, unfortunately, in most people the level of stored megin is just adequate to meet daily needs. This relatively low level is not sufficient to give you what you had known as "good luck" and is definitely not adequate to protect you from threatening situations which call for an abundant supply of megin to protect you from harm.
The Northern tradition does NOT hold that individuals are limited to a fixed allocation of megin energy in life. HOWEVER, we do know that if an individual doesn't learn how to preserve personal megin and how to refill the hamingja after discharging megin, they certainly will appear to "run out of luck." As a student on the Northern path, you will be pleased to know that there are ways in which you can increase your luck so that you will have an abundance of megin energies at your command for positive applications in life.
INCREASING YOUR LUCK
FIRST, Stop Excess Drainage! Extreme diplays of negative emotion (anger, jealousy, etc.) will cause unnatural drainage of your reservoir of energies. Unbridled exuberance that fills your personal atmosphere with energy supplied from your hamingja will also contribute to loss of energy. You wonder why the Ancient Wise Ones are written or observed as (relatively) sober and nonemotional? This is why.
You should also Check Your Eyes! You will want to monitor how much energy flows out of your eyes in the normal course of the day on meaningless trivia that could be retained in your hamingja. Your eyes are truly the "windows of your soul." If you don't "draw the shades" on your eyes, you will needlessly discharge psychic energy from your reservoir of storage. You will also want to remove yourself from the vicinity of the energy "sappers" as defined in our lessons.
SECOND, Add to Your Storehouse of Energy. Meditate on the several runes that are known to build up your hamingja and its reserve of energy. The rune Fehu, a fiery energy rune, is known to increase the production of megin into your hamingja. It draws down the energy of the sun, the moon and the stars into your personal sphere. The rune Uruz will draw upon the powerful telluric rune streams within the Earth to be stored in your reservoir of psychic energy. The rune Elhaz,the Guardian rune, will act to strengthen the walls of your hamingja, giving it a greater capacity to hold new energies.
You should do deep breathing exercises that we include in our lesson instruction to gather more of the mystical Ond into your hamingja. Get in the habit of regular physical exercise and proper eating habits to maintain good health and vitality. You do not want to spend precious megin in restoring yourself to health after unnecessary disease or sickness.
THIRD: Constantly Visualize Build-Up of Energy. As you mentally redirect the energies generated by your rune meditations into your hamingja, (1) see the area of concentration expanding to accommodate this new influx as a water bag expands as it fills with liquid, (2) see the extremes of your auric bubble becoming more defined with increased density at the edges so you can make it impermeable to any leakage or intrusions from outside at will, and (3) visualize a release valve within your auric field so you can "send" some of this energy to loved ones or for other workings.
Because of its capacity for discharge into magical workings and its ability to be refilled at will, albeit with a certain amount of concentrated mental work, you see that the hamingja is a very valuable mental tool for solving the problems of life, most of which are originally caused by a lack of megin energy to begin with.
SENDING YOUR LUCK
This article is neither the time nor the place to go into the operative techniques of sending your Luck to others or onto situations you need to control as did the great Kings, Drightons, and Seers as noted in the Heimskringla (Chronicle of the Kings) when situations deem it necessary. That is left for our Rune Master lessons.
We will take a moment to qualify the matter of Luck regarding gambling and the like. Yes, the storehouse of megin in your hamingja can theoretically improve your luck at gambling or even at the lottery. But remember, at the same time you are applying your megin to the gaming table, there are others probably more skillful and trained than you in the art of gambling, who are also applying THEIR megin to the lay of the cards or dice or even the lottery.
Whoever is the most skillful, of course, will have the most influence. But, remember, even the professionals have to live by the whims of Luck. So, unless you are a skilled gamer, it's best to practice your Luck on getting a better job, finding a mate, increasing your business prosperity and the like. At these tasks, you will have great success because you are applying your conscious use of Northern Luck in situations where you are personally involved.
THE MYSTERY OF "LUCK"
With all this being said, there is still a great mystery to Luck. We used the term "somewhat" earlier in this article, and we meant it.
While the preceding text appears like a 1-2-3 step technical model on how to manage your Luck, be aware of this: how the Breath of Life, Ond, and the magic of megin or charisma work within your aura is more of an esoteric art than a science.
Still, there are others in the mainstream who believe in the concept of "Grace" to intercede in their lives (a worthy, but ill-defined abstraction). In the Northern Path, we have brought Luck to some kind of definition and identity, along with its influencing constructs in your auric energy field, so that you, the practitioner under the influence of Illumined Imagination, can have tools with which to exercise your skills.
When we at the Denali Institute wish you Good "Northern" Luck, we mean something more than just good wishes. We mean something tangible that can be felt with your extra-sensory perceptions.
We can only touch on some of the principles of Northern Luck in this journal article. Much more is contained in the expansive lore of the rune Fehu found in our lesson material as well as a full discussion in Rune Master course quarter #3 on Abundant Living.
Are You Enriched or Robbed?
If a mugger took $ 500 from your wallet
and gave you $ 100 back,
would you feel ENRICHED by his generosity,
or ROBBED of your $400?
Unfortunately, that is exactly the situation most seekers find themselves in when searching for answers from popular spiritual sources.
So much has been forgotten about the true nature of the Life Force, or has been covered over by centuries of dogma, or has been out-and-out changed by power-seeking revisionists, that most of humanity feels "enriched" by the little knowledge being given them by mainstream religion, and even, most New Age sources of wisdom.
In Denali lessons on cosmology, we learn that Life mysteries are meant to be understood by the intuitive and illumined reasoning powers of the human mind. They are NOT meant to be perpetually shrouded in the foggy mists of blind faith and abstractions. The ancient Wise Ones wrote their teachings accordingly, but so much has been lost between then and now. Where did we go wrong?
New students are encouraged to review our foundation documents, such as the Understanding Northern Spiritual Mysteries manuscript and our Quick Study lesson: Runes and Your Destiny, to refresh your mind about the value of the original knowledge contained in the Northern tradition. This will allow us to present NEW information about how modern seekers have been shortchanged, without having to go over the foundation points of Northern lore in this short article.
This is a brief introduction into the teaching points contained in this essay (available as Insight Article #292) and Denali lessons on Northern lore and Yggdrasil cosmology. The singular question to be answered is . . . how do you feel, Enriched or Robbed by cultural trances?
The Understanding manuscript provides
a foundation of knowledge regarding Northern spiritual mysteries. It is offered as part of
the Rune Master instruction program or separately to the general public. The following
extracts will give you an idea of the range and scope of this paper and our
A Surrounding Medium
Like the fish that has no name for water,
those of us who live in modern western culture are surrounded by the heritage of ancient
Northern custom and tradition. It sustains us with a richness and abundance that is unique
in the history of civilization. Just as the fish does not conceive water as an object
outside itself, we neglect to see how much our daily lives are influenced by the
Northern tradition. This is a great mistake, because it leads us to search for esoteric
truths in strange mystical doctrines, attempting to configure our mental selves to
unnatural (to us living in western culture) methods of thinking. All the while, we have
the philosophic substance of Life within our very own cultural heritage. Signs of the
great Northern tradition surround us daily, for instance...
(This paragraph is followed by eight
distinct signs of the Northern tradition in our cultural heritage. The signs include the
foundation points of democracy and our system of law; the overriding drive for equality of
sexes which is more Northern than Middle Eastern tradition; the names of the days of the
week; the festival of Yule; our natural system of measure, etc.)
In Northern lore, Ørlög is the root
concept of the Cosmic Law of Cause and Effect. In Old Norse it literally means
primal layers, and is loosely translated as fate. Ørlög
parallels the Eastern concept of karma, a relatively fixed outworking of cause and effect.
However, within ørlög we find the
Northern concept of wyrd, which is the process by which past actions are
woven to influence your present and future experiences. In the North, the concept of wyrd
provides a flexibility not identified in the karma of Eastern tradition. Wyrd
is the means by which ørlög, or the cosmic law of cause and effect, can be
Because Northern esoteric disciplines hold
that the will of the individual is ever in play to influence events, wyrd can be
bent to the will of the illumined mind. In Northern lore, the web of wyrd is never
looked upon as fatalistic or unchangeable. Rather, past deeds build up weight in the
cosmic fabric by which the lay of future events can be anticipated. If these
events are deemed undesirable, the lay can be redirected (but not negated)
by the active mind and independent will of the individual.
Several runes work to
bend unfavorable wyrd, specifically the rune Nauthiz (#10) when
activated correctly. The energies of Nauthiz help define the existing web of wyrd and
act as a counter force to negative ørlög, much as a karate expert uses the force of
an opponent to render an attack harmless.
In Northern myth the three Norns are depicted as weaving
the web of wyrd for both humankind and the gods alike, for no energy field within the
realm of Midgard (Earth) is exempt from the Cosmic Law of cause and effect. The Norns
are also known as the three Weird Sisters in Shakespeare and the three
Fates of Greco-Roman lore.
(The above paragraph
outlines one of eight identifying characteristics of the
Northern tradition explained in the "Understanding" paper.)
Those who think the Northern mystery
teachings stop at the pantheon (Odin, Thor, Tyr, Freyr, Freyja, etc.) fall woefully
short of an accurate perception of the Northern creation story. The lineage of androgynous, pre-conscious Beings (Ymir, Audhumla, Buri) demonstrates a little known
rudimentary truth found within the Northern mysteries.
By placing the androgyne several levels of
consciousness above the pantheon of gods and goddesses, the Northern ancients
revealed their knowledge of Ultimate Intelligence (Cosmic Mind, Creative Life Force) as a
state of consciousness beyond that of the gods and goddesses. In fact, myths of the
mighty gods and goddesses emphasize that they were human in their appetites, while
superhuman in their feats.
The energy that they used for their
activities comes from the Source of all energy in the universe, Cosmic Mind. This cosmic
energy was called Ond in the North. It is also known as Nous, Chi, Prana, Manitu,
etc. in other traditions. In Northern myth, the Aesir Goddess Frigga (wife of Odin) is
imaged as spinning the (cosmic) Substance that eventually becomes the threads the Norns
weave together to determine the ørlög and wyrd of humankind. This role places Frigga
equivalent to the Cosmic Feminine in other metaphysical traditions. Denali Institute
programs explore the mysterious dimensions of Cosmic Mind beyond the level of the ancient
pantheon as a part of our triune approach to the Northern mysteries.
(The above paragraph
outlines one of four critical points in differentiating the
Northern tradition as contained in the "Understanding" paper.)
Archetypes and Other Psychological
The most accepted modern psychological
structure that comes closest to the ancient Teutonic view of the Life mysteries is that
developed by the Swiss psychiatrist, C.G. Jung. No 20th Century thinker has contributed
more to the understanding of symbols and symbol-making than Dr. Carl Jung. Jungian
psychology postulates that remnants of the primordial dimensions of Being penetrate our
rational consciousness in the form of symbols. There are symbols having personal
resonance and symbols with universal resonance, which Jung calls archetypes.
Although Jung popularized the term
archetype, he didn't coin the word. It first appears in Plato as he described the ideas
or forms of natural objects present in the divine mind prior to creation. Jung
suggests that if you could follow the archetype all the way back to its inception, you'd
pass over the chasm between mind and matter. Archetypes are housed in the collective
unconscious, a term invented by Jung to refer to an ancient symbol making mechanism. While
the personal unconscious is individual, the collective unconscious is universal. Jungian
theory along with quantum physics and holographic theory (covered later) gives us a rational
foothold to understand how archetypal symbols, such as runes and the pantheon of gods and
goddesses, can influence the manifest world through the agency of an illuminated human
OTHER TOPICS covered in the "Understanding" paper include
The Northern Creation Story
Dynamics of the Northern Cosmic World Tree, Yggdrasil
The Pantheon of the North
The Mystical Landscape: Earth's Elementals and the Co-destiny of Earth and Humanity
The Northern Tradition in World History including its Suppression and Modern Revival
The Runes: Origins of the Runes, Quantum Physics and the Hologram, Science and Philosophy Come Together
Mind States for Mystical Practices: Changing Brain Wave Patterns
A - The 24-Rune Elder Futhark - Rune Shapes & their Ancient and Transpersonal Meanings B - Bibliography & Recommended Reading
For a summary of the contents of our Rune Master lesson program, please go to our Rune Master Program page.
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