“Comeback?” – The Rabyd Skald – The Grey and The Wayfarer – Part 31

Happy Mani’s Day!

It has been a long time since I put digital ink to digital paper and the most challenging thing is that WordPress has changed its format so I had to learn some new shit before I could even post. I really hate that. It’s not terrible but it is annnoying.

There are of course many more things that are annoying right now, not the least of which is my own depression. I has been a really difficult several months here and to be honest it has not been good for me in a lot of ways. A good chiunk of it has been due to not writing on this blog. So here I am trying to crawl my way out of The Grey.

Why the The Grey?  Because this blog kept me focused on what was important to me.  In the last couple months, I haven’t even focused on much about virtue or my goals and it shows. Survival Mode sucks. This blog not only recorded my life’s jouney, but now I see it also was about planning that journey and keeping me moving along the path. All that stopped when I stopped and now I am trying to recover it. 

So here I am in the middle of the night writing because the feelings of helplessness and lack of direction are overwhelming. I hate this and part of it is the old feelings of giving up what makes me happy in order for everyone else to be happy have returned with a vengence. This summer was far less painful in terms of heartbreak from a couple years ago (Less but still there), but more so in that what I feel I am missing is still missing.

So Part One of walking out of The Grey is to start writing again. I need also to change this blog in some major ways so it takes up little time. If I can’t get a post out in less than an hour then it is too long. Particlularly journal posts. I will be redesigning the posts to be split into smaller chunks.

It was funny. In March, I was in the best shape I have been mentally and physically in a long time. Then something triggered and I have been fighting uphill ever since. But I certianly didn’t help things by stopping my routines or writing on this blog.

The great mistake people make is that when they see my stopping this blog they sign relief because they don’t have to deal with my emotions and think that I am alright. It might be good for a lot of people, but it sucks for me and I am not alright.

But, I am going to have a comeback or die trying at this point. It starts here with blowing the dust off the virtues. Digging deep in myself and pulling my hat down over my head and my collar around my face and walking the storm known simply as The Grey. It starts now.

It is time to return. It is time to comeback.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Writing Thoughts – O For a Muse of Fire” – The Rabyd Skald

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day!

I have been thinking of late about how much I struggle writing.  I never used to have this much problem doing it, but these days it is a major uphill struggle and I can only figure one reason.  I don’t have muse anymore. I lack that person, real or imaginary to inspire my writing and it is becoming a real problem. 

In many ways, my imagination has always personified itself into a form that I have called my muse  This was contrasted by a personification of my internal editor. My muse was always female and my editor male. Just imaginary concepts to have a conversation with while I was writing. My muses have represented that which I found important at the time.

  1. In my early days, my writing was inspired by my boyhood imagination.  My muse became a personification of that. A young teasing girl my own age who pushed me.
  2. Faith was my muse for most of my writing up until I left my faith five years ago.  I did notice this struggle at that time as well.
  3. Only one time did my muse center around an actual person and Elpis the Dryad was a personification of the inspiration Miss Salty gave me. Miss Salty remains the only actual female that was also my muse. It is one of many reasons I still have a hard time shrugging her off my heart, she is truly unique to me. She was and sometimes remains and inspiration to my writing. Or at least who she presented herself to be to me was.  Now the only inspiration she gives me is the occasional sad love poem.

This leaves me with a hole I have not truly filled back in and it makes me struggle writing. I am so scattered in my thoughts these days when I write.  I need new creative focus and I will be damned if I can figure out what it will be.  Something to set my imagination on fire so the digital ink burns as I tap the keys.

See the source image

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Tyr – One-Handed Justice” (Asatru – Part 13) – The Pagan Pulpit

Happy Sol’s Day

Announcements:

We don’t pray here – we figure God, the gods, goddesses, or whatever powers that be either know already, don’t give a fuck, or are busy with more important matters than our petty stuff. We also kind of assume that they expect us to do stuff that we can do for ourselves and that we will do them ourselves and not be lazy. We also believe in being good friends, so we don’t presume on our friendship with the powers that be by asking them all the time for stuff while giving them nothing in return.

We also don’t take an offering here.  We figure the powers that be probably don’t need it.  Let’s be honest, offerings are not given to the divine powers, they are given to an organization to support it.  Just being honest. God, the gods or whatever never sees a dime, farthing or peso of that money; it all goes to the church, mosque or shrine.

Theme Song: “Wolf Totem” – The Hu

I discovered this group that has more of a Mongolian feel but the song is titled ‘Wolf Totem’ which, given Tyr’s one story involves Fenrir the great Wolf, seems fitting.

Lyric Video:

Meditation:
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Text:

See the source image

If you want more details about Asatru, I can’t recommend this book enough.

Sermon: 

The god Tyr’s name still lives on every time you say Tuesday.  It is his day and it probably speaks of this god’s importance more than any other than right up there with Odin and Thor. Tyr is much discussion of Tyr’s sphere as it would be simple to say he governs war, truth, and justice but the seems to be a mixing of the three ideas so in truth he may be more the god of trial by combat.  That truth and justice are ultimately played out in martial combat or a trial by combat is what Tyr represents and if there is a god that represents honor, it is Tyr.

Tyr’s appearance in Norse mythology is twofold.  The first is minor in the creation of beer for the gods but it is mentioned that he is the child of giants.  As a spiritual concept, I find this interesting as it seems to be saying that nature’s force has a way of bringing about justice and Tyr is simply a more civilized manifestation of that.

The second and main story that Tyr is known for is the story of Fenrir the Great Wolf.  In that story demonstrates his honor in that he refuses to remove his hand from Fenrir’s mouth and does to get Fenrir to trust the god’s final test of strength with the chain that actually binds Fenrir for Ragnarok.  But before that what strikes me as interesting is he seems to be the only god not afraid of Fenrir.  This actually speaks of the notion some warriors have of honor making one fearless.  Tyr seems to invoke that image in his story rather well.

To the followers of Asatru Tyr, of course, is remembered every Tuesday and his story is one that is repeated to demonstrate courage and honor.  Something that all Asatru followers hold highly given they are two of the Nine Noble Virtues.  I guess I find in the story of Tyr much the same along with the concept of how much are you willing to sacrifice for both victory and honor?  Tyr reminds us all that the price can be very close to home and should not be considered wasted if it leads to a good end.

Tyr is revered by those who seek justice so military and police officers who are Asatru gravitate to him as well as those who seek a balancing of the scales with Christianity.  For myself I find his story inspiring as far as honor and courage.

Hail Tyr, God of Truth, Justice, and War!  God of the Northern Star. Hail! 

Parting Thought:

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I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Belief in the Norse Gods (Asatru Part 6)” – The Pagan Pulpit

Happy Sol’s Day

Announcements:

We don’t pray here – we figure God, the gods, goddesses, or whatever powers that be either know already, don’t give a fuck, or are busy with more important matters than our petty stuff. We also kind of assume that they expect us to do stuff that we can do for ourselves and that we will do them ourselves and not be lazy. We also believe in being good friends, so we don’t presume on our friendship with the powers that be by asking them all the time for stuff while giving them nothing in return.

We also don’t take an offering here.  We figure the powers that be probably don’t need it.  Let’s be honest, offerings are not given to the divine powers, they are given to an organization to support it.  Just being honest. God, the gods or whatever never sees a dime, farthing or peso of that money; it all goes to the church, mosque or shrine.

Theme Song: “The Pagan Norse” – Burnt Page Films:

Meditation:

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Even death is just an epitaph to your story as your legacy and influence can have an effect long after you are gone. But while you are alive the story is still being written and you can have an effect on the end of the story and what that legacy will be.

Text:

See the source image

If you want more details about Asatru, I can’t recommend this book enough.

Sermon:

As we head into the second part fo our text, a sermon is in order about belief in the old gods, but first, a disclaimer from myself as this is the part of Asatru I have the ‘hardest’ time with.  I don’t have a problem with people believing in the Norse gods any more than I have a problem believing in Christ, but I find that the actual existence of such divine beings as Odin or Christ for me needs to be defined. For me, this would be a belief for me that is more about the personification of divine or spiritual forces, not a belief in an actual being known as Odin or Thor. It’s kind of like saying Spiderman exists.  Is there a real guy that is named Peter Parker with spider powers? No.  But there is a creation in the literature that is a beloved comic character that teaches life lessons and personifies certain very human ideas. That is very real.

I think the same is true for all the mythologies.  Certain cultures created stories that reflected their values and there was a perceived need to have these values preserved and restated through myth.  The Norse people were no different in this regard. Whether Odin and Thor actually exist is irrelevant to me as this part of Asatru, it is the values and virtues they portray in their stories that matter to me.  In that respect, the gods exist and the had an influence on my ancestor’s lives and that is enough for me.

For followers of Asatru, there is an identification with gods that is often individual and very personal.  Some followers of Asatru worship all the gods, but they’re always a favorite god for many which earn that follower a title – ‘Thorsman’ or ‘Freyawoman’ or some other title with the god’s name.  I don’t think you have to do much more than look at this blog to see what god would be in my title. I am an Odinsman.  Not the warrior Odin in his hall so much as the wanderer looking for knowledge and wisdom.   It is an image that inspires me and motivates me.

See the source image

Asatru is about the Norse gods in the end and their worship and veneration.  It is about honoring them and what they stood for. This is something one can accomplish without necessarily believing in a literal Thor, Freya or Odin. Religion is ultimately a personal construct that you can share as a community construct. Many followers of Asatru are also like myself in that we are returning to the faith of our ancestors.  A faith that was taken from us by the invasion of Christianity and now we have the freedom to once again embrace.

In the coming weeks, we will be looking at the spiritual significance of many of the gods to the followers of Asatru.  Essential Asatru does this by first covering the gods and then the goddesses, I will be going back and forth to maintain a little more male/female balance. In some cases, I will probably combine a few of the gods and goddess together.  This will be done when there is little known about them or that the combination has a significance in the mythology.

Parting Thought:

Quit explaining your life, live it.  Those that love you will give you the freedom to be what you want to be because they love you.  Haters?  Fuck ’em.  They get silence.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Mirror Motivation” – A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

Most of what involves my self goals are either exercise and/or nutrition-related and sometimes I get asked how I stay motivated.  I actually have to go back to when I was first lifting to answer that question.  I read a lot back then from the great people of fitness and you can’t do that without looking at Jack Lalanne.  Long-time fitness guru who died in his 90s, he was constantly asked how to get and stay motivated. In one interview he answered the following:

  1. Get a full-length mirror and hang it up in your bedroom or bathroom.
  2. Take off all your clothes and stand in front of that mirror and really look at your body.  Honest assessment.
  3. Look at your body and keep looking until you get mad and are motivated to do something about it if there is something that needs work and gives yourself a pat on the back for the good work you have done if it looks good.
  4. Either way, this will motivate you to continue.
  5. Do this regularly, like once every week or whenever you feel your motivation slide.

According to Jack, this was the motivation technique of himself and a good percentage of those he knew that were fitness instructors and it worked most of the time. I can believe it because it works for me. I have been doing this, I will not say consistently, but when it has been consistent my motivation never has wavered. I think the only words of caution I have ever heard about this is psychological: men tend to view themselves more positively in the mirror and women tend to be more negative.  Keep that in mind when you’re trying to make an honest assessment.

From a more spiritual point of view, viewing one’s soul in a mirror can have the same effect. Being honest with yourself and gazing at yourself in some kind fo soul mirror is beneficial. For me, it is still the same moment I am standing naked in from of a mirror trying to motivate myself, but instead, of my chest and legs, I am looking into my own eyes. The mirror to the soul is an accurate description for sure.

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Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April Fools Day, April 1st, 2020.

Discipline is the key to all my other virtues.  It is the muscle virtue that makes all the others work.  Without it, I make no progress on anything so getting back to Routine is kind of my major focus right now.

Nutritionally I need to start cutting more carbs. I have lost a lot of weight so far (70 lbs.), but my honest mirror assessment is I probably have 10 to 15. I also need to really work on the Paleo being full paleo which means finding alternatives to dairy and a few other things.

This is the only bucket list item with a specific date.  In truth it is not an act of rebellion against myself, but rather me being truly who I want to be.  It is only rebellious to society and culture so that is my thinking as I plan it.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

Keep getting up.

Weightlifting needs to change in September.  I think I am ready to engage the barbell exercises again and as I look in the mirror it is those muscles that seem to lag behind.  Literally one of them is my gluts.  That’s my butt people, but also my lower back and chest could use some more work.    It’s the squats, deadlifts, and benchpress that are needed.

Walking and stretching will return simply if I follow my various Routines.

I still am trying to get the money for my first tattoo. Hopefully, the promotion to fulltime at work or a new job will do wonders for that coming together faster.

Fidelity: 

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

Goal: Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

I wrote on fidelity this week so I won’t belabor the point.

This is my bucket list item with the most time, but I can get the genetics test as soon as I have the money and then I and a search site are going to get acquainted in order to find out where exactly in the world my ancestors got on the boat and came from to America.

Higher Virtue – Wisdom: 

Looking honestly in the mirror is something that has given me wisdom.  Our perspective ourselves is often skewed in our minds.  It takes the mirror reflecting back at us with us engaged in an honest assessment of what we actually see, to get aa true picture of who we are.  This is the wisdom that is found in the mirror.

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Walking – 1 hour.
  5. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  6. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.

In a couple weeks, you will probably see these routines change for Work and Rest Days. I am thinking some things will be every day but with shorter time spans to get the discipline of it going again.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 3

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Finding a New Muse – Blog Notes” – The Rabyd Skald

Happy Saturn’s Day

I know, right.  It’s a Rabyd Skald Post that isn’t The Grey and The Wayfarer and thus isn’t my soul bleeding all over the place. I had to write the most recent series, emotional baggage and all of it; but it has been an emotional roller coaster, and quite frankly I need to move on and this is me taking the first steps in that. Whenever I have turned a new corner, I have turned to writing to help me guide me on the path, and this time will be no exception.  This post is a discussion of an issue and some notes on the future of this blog and what you can expect to see.

The issue is the loss of my muse and the search for a new one.  I have had several muses over the years. All of them female. The first one was my first love. The second was a love for writing that I developed with my first blogs.  I kind of imagined her as a loving teacher standing over my shoulder. More recently I imagined her as one of my friends who argued with my internal editor a lot. My last one was Miss Salty and as you know she is now more of a ghost that haunts me rather than a muse these days. My wife has never acted as a muse for me because that is not the nature of our relationship. She inspires a lot of virtues in me, but not creativity. So I search for a new one.

This may actually be my first attempt at looking at spirituality from a pagan point of view to find a new muse. To find some inspiration in a spiritual idea to form into a lovely woman who will inspire me.  Why female? Because when all else has failed, when I think of the women who have inspired me over the years as a man, they all have that one quality that inspires my creativity – femininity itself.  The problem is all of them have had the weakness of being more of stay at home women who were never warriors and I think that is part of the issue. My muse needs to be a combination of a strong female warrior and a passionate creative lover. Freya personified but not Freya.  A shieldmaiden but also a skald in her own right. Femininity personified but Viking femininity.

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I think the first steps to this will be to make this blog take the Viking and Norse mythology theme it has more complete. One of the things I can do right away is the greeting is for each post.  You know, ‘Happy Saturn’s Day’ – except Saturn is a Roman god and actually presents the only real problem in this change. Sun’s Day becomes Sol’s Day and Moon’s Day becomes Mani’s Day.  But who to pick for Saturn’s replacement?  Well, let’s see. 1) all of these are Norse gods or goddesses. There are four Norse gods represented: Mani, Tyr, Odin, and Thor, each with their own day. There are three goddesses represented: Sol, Frigg, and Freya with Frigg and Freya sharing a day.  So I think it should be a goddess with her own day to balance things out.  But who to chose?  I guess I would accept suggestions, so let me know in the comments.  But in any case, I will make a decision by next week.

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Speaking of comments, I am going to do something brave.  I have decided to open up the comments to where if you are approved once then you don’t have to be approved again.  I am going to still monitor this closely because of past problems, but I think most of the people ho write comments can be trusted. Starting Sol’s Day you will be able to do this.  Don’t abuse the privilege, be kind to one another.

The other thing is the post-rotation and the one thing this last mini-series has taught me is that I could do the journal Posts every other week.  Thus I could open up every other week to write on other things. To do other series either fiction or non-fiction which does represent my style a little bit from All Things Rabyd.  In addition, Weekends have always been a bugaboo of what to do but a rotation where I post stuff on Saturday and the extra slot on Sol’s Day would be nice places for creative writing.

Ultimately, what I want is more flexibility in my weekly agenda, but at the same time some solid rotation that keeps me writing on different subjects and in different forms.  I will drop another The Rabyd Skald once I have made some final decisions.

I am looking at this as moving on. I need to move this blog from dealing with the past so much and talk more about my journey through life. My Pilgrimage. I hope some changes will help me do that.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!