“Happy Halloween, Blessed Samhain, Joyous Winternights” – The Rabyd Skald

Happy Thor’s Day!!!

Happy Halloween!!! Or Blessed Samhain or Joyous Winternights!!!  Whatever your persuasion may this day bring you joy, fun, and laughter.  I have to work today but have every intention of lighting up my jack-o-lanterns later and getting a picture while putting down some rum.  As winter comes to the north, may you enjoy all life has to bring! Seize the day and enjoy it!!!

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One writing note is that there will be no Rogue Wizard today.  I am working on the final parts of that series as far as story arc so by the end of the year it should be done.

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I want to take the time to also thank all of you who read me.  While I do this blog for very personal reasons, I have to admit the likes and comments are appreciated.  You give it a little more value than personal reflection.  Thank you all you witches, ghouls, zombies, vampires, ghosts, goblins, etc. You are awesome.

Have some fun tonight.

I remain,

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

Skaal!!!

“Pagan Holidays: Winternights / Halloween / Samhain – Part 3” – Odin’s Eye

Happy Woden’s (Odin’s) Day.    

Discussion:

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Say hello to the Brothers Grimm.  I don’t know if I can call myself a pumpkin artist yet, but I have to say I enjoyed the artistic moment of creating these two more than I thought i would.  I haven’t carved a pumpkin since my kids were little.  It is an enjoyable experience and next year I want to plan it out better.  The Brother’s Grimm represents fear and joy, two very palatable emotions at Halloween.

As we get closer to Halloween I have to say I am enjoying this holiday personally more than in years past.  I like writing about things magical and strange and so the holiday fits me.  My personal history with Halloween also factors in as for many years I was told I couldn’t celebrate it because it was Satanic. I never completely bought it, but it was a constant nagging in my life from Chrisitan culture.

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More properly now I know this has nothing more to do with Satan than it does with God.  Samhain and the pagans that celebrate it has very little to do with either and is more about welcoming the coming of winter. The Wild Hunt is released and the time for hearth and home is at hand.  The time for appeasing the spirits and honoring the dead is more what this has to do with than anything else and the Abrahamic traditions of Satan and Yahweh have nothing to do with it.

Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Faith:

The real issue of faith in the holiday known as Halloween, Samhain or Winternuights, to those of a more Norse persuasion such as myself, is this belief that the veil between our world and the spiritual one becomes thin which allows the two to merge or cross.  While not a believer myself I find this idea fascinating.  It represents something that I cannot get over this idea of multiple worlds that collide sometimes, alternate realities that when they merge they create another alternate reality.

For me, it is the changing of the tide so to speak as one season moves into another as winter and summer collide to create fall is in its own way ‘magical’.  Sure it is a more naturalistic explanation of things but the concept is the same.  The continued faith that Summer will give way to winter and then Winter will give way to Summer in their turn.

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Meditation:

Halloween causes me to meditate more on the joys fo life and celebrations I have missed out on because of a Christianity I no longer believe in.  If I see anything in it now, it is the desire to enjoy life and celebrate its seasons and moments with a little more fervor. At least as much fervor as an INFJ type can muster.  I find it interesting as I meditate on how religion can rob you, the greatest thing I have lost is the celebration moments and fun times simply because some world view wanted to tell me not to do this or don’t touch that. If my meditations have led my thoughts into any direction it is the freedom from religions’ persuasive power to bind one’s thoughts when such binding is not necessary.

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Mystery:

I will be honest, this filter of Odin’s Eye has become problematic as an Athiest.  I mean having a theology degree can be helpful down the road as I write books challenging theology, but for a life filter that looks at life’s intangible elements, the artistic and ‘spiritual’ side of it, theology is becoming more and more useless to me.  Its a set of clothes that no longer fits. This relates to Halloween in that it is this time of year that calls me to be different.

So today, in the spirit of Halloween, I announce a change from Theology to Mystery as part of Odin’s Eye.  More in the spirit of the Viking Runes and trying to find their meaning. The mystery is something that might always be there but is something I will no longer use as an excuse, just an identification marker of that which I don’t understand that I am trying to discover its secrets. It fits far better with my concept of myself which is rapidly evolving.

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Spirituality:

I guess I have a lot of tolerance spiritually speaking for the pagans of this world. I get you guys far more than any other religion and at least I think you are starting with the right place – looking at the world around you and within yourselves. Looking at what both are for yourself and not what some supposed ‘man of god’ tells you.  I respect that level of individuality a lot.  Probably the most spiritual thing a human can do is be themselves.

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Conclusion:

In the future, I think Halloween will remain my favorite holiday and I plan on celebrating with the same enthusiasm next year as some others celebrate Christmas.  I know now this holiday represents my turning into being an individual instead of a religious robot more than any other.

I remain,

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

Skaal!!!

“Pagan Holidays: Winternights / Halloween/Samhain – Part 2” – Odin’s Eye

Happy Woden’s (Odin’s) Day.    

Discussion:

I am going to talk about modern Halloween and why it is now my favorite holiday.  Mostly it is because for a long time I was told as a Christian that it was satanic or full of witchcraft.  It is a Wiccan holiday in its original form but also pretty basically pagan as well.  Much fo what we see is hold over symbols from a bygone age that survive in large part because it is a fun holiday.

In the United States, the retail business has realized something – it is the second most money grossing holiday of the year.  Literally, second only to Christmas now.  Easter has fallen to third and Valentine’s fourth. It has become more than a holiday for kids trick or treating.   Adults here have very adult Halloween parties without the kids.  I mean you are dressed up as something else and often people cannot tell who you are if you do it right.  Add alcohol, candy, and sensuality and you get the modern American US Halloween.

Most 0f the pagan roots of this holiday are lost and that is probably, on the one hand, Ok and on the other hand. something for those of us that like to dig deeper is missing.

Oh, yeah I am using the pin-up girls again for this one. This time though vintage classic ones that I love.  It’s not very politically correct, but 1) it’s Halloween and 2) I don’t give a fuck what the language-thought nazis say.

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Time to Look Through the Eye:

“To see the truth, change one eye for another”

Faith:

I am going to deal with the more Wiccan holiday of Samhain in this one that is now modern Halloween.  This is actually the biggest festival of the Wiccan calendar and thus most celebrated.  It’s opposite number and Spring festival is Beltane.  You might say these two festivals bookend Summer and Winter.  A festival of the dead, spirits and thus full of the familiar phrase – trick or treat. This reflects their appeasement of those prankster spirits and thus have them pass over your place.  The Jack-o-Lanterns and many other customs reflect this.

I don’t believe in the supernatural but I find the whole holiday interesting because it is such a quilt work of different pagan traditions that it is fun to guess where which tradition came from and how it came to be.  I have faith this is a fun and interesting holiday.

Meditation:

Like  Beltaine, I feel that this holiday reflects the very human need to blow off steam.  We can’t be good all the time and sometimes you just need to go and be a little naughty and mischevious.  Beltane is perfect for this and Halloween even more so. My meditations on human nature simply lead me to think that people need to stop being so good for a couple days a year and Halloween is one of those days.

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Theology:

Growing up this was Satan’s holiday. We didn’t participate or were told not to.  my father this was bullshit, Chrisitan though he was.  He was the one that told me that there is a great deal of difference between what something was and what it is.  He felt what Halloween is now was more about having a good time and in some respect connecting with your neighbors.

Of course, the average Wiccan doesn’t believe in or worship Satan any more than they do the Chrisitan god.  But people have a way of trying to make you inferior for a stupid reason like they don’t do holidays like this while you do; so you are morally less than them.  Got sick of this shitty theology long before I left Christianity.

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Spirituality:

I do find the idea of appeasing the spirits to be an interesting spiritual concept in paganism. The one area of Norse mythology that is rich but extremely complicated so I don’t address it is the whole issue of earth spirits, elves, and dark elves.  It would be a fascinating study and probably relates to Winternights and Halloween a lot. I just look at it with awe as to how complicated it seems.

For myself, the connection with the past, the spending time with people as a community celebrating something is enough.  It is these connections and having fun with them that denote my ‘spirituality’.

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Conclusion:

Why do I like this holiday so much?  Because of all the holidays in the US calendar, it has nothing to do with God, Christianity, Patriotism, or anything like them.  It remains truly pagan despite Christianity making November 1st All Saints Day.  Halloween gives November 1st the middle finger and that just makes me smile.

I also like the grey side to Halloween – the naughty side to it.  It gives new meaning to the words – ‘trick or treats?’ and that is very Ok with me. Just remember sometimes the answer to that question is – yes.

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I remain,

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

Skaal!!!