Thursday, March 16, 2017

Frith Forge and Germany Sacred Sites Tour



Frith Forge is the space and time on an international level to build alliances, understanding, and friendships among us instead of compartmentalizing further in an industrialized world. Lets learn from each other with respect for one another, and in frith instead of in isolation. Together we can enjoy this opportunity to discuss inclusion in religion and to promote cultural, religious, and educational exchange.

Frith Forge
October 6-8, 2017
KiEZ Inselparadies Petzow
Zum Inselparadies 9-12
14542 Werder/Petzow
Germany

Each organization that will be represented at this conference will have featured presentation time. All attendees are invited to submit paper summaries of presentations they would like to give to IREP@thetroth.org. We encourage vendors/organizations to set up a table. There will be time for lectures, group discussion, workshops, ritual, and more!

There will be a strong Urglaawe presence at Frith Forge, and the Sacred Sites tour will visit locations  in Germany that are very much of interest to the Urglaawe communities.

Early arrivals may join us for unstructured meet and greet time starting October 5th.

The conference is immediately followed by the Sacred Sites of Germany tour, which runs from October 8-14, 2017. Pre-registration is underway between now and March 31 for the tour. The conference and the tour are separate (but related) events, so you may participate in one, the other, or both!


Information on each event is available on the Frith Forge website:

http://events.thetroth.org/frith-forge/2017

Hope to see you in Germany!

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Der Luul, the Defender of the Tender Greens

Drawing on some information previously posted here on this blog, Deitsch Mythology presents the fractured story of der Luul. Der Luul is a mysterious and little-known figure, who may have roots in the Frankish lore of the god Lollus. Lollus was honored with grapes, ears of corn, and wreaths of poppies (Deitsch: Flatterros, Maach, Mohn; tax: Papaver).

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Beans for Offerings; Bee Stings (Iemschtachel)

One of Braucherei's most traditional offerings to the land spirits (or to the land itself) consists simply of three beans. The beans can be of any type, though Amish Nuttle (pdc: Gnoddelbuhn or Gnuddelbuhn), Great Northern and Kidney are among those commonly used historically.

The beans may be offered anytime, but there are instances in Braucherei when you have an obligation to present an offering. These instances typically occur when you cause any sort of disruption or disturbance to the land. These disturbances include digging, planting, harvesting, weeding, clearing brush from hiking trails, mowing the grass, pruning bushes, and more. The offering shows respect for the land spirits (plus we now know that there is the added benefit of nitrogen fixation!), so most Brauchers always have beans on hand as a traditional offering.

However, Braucherei does allow for alternates in circumstances in which the beans may take root and cause disturbance to the plants' natural habitat. In these cases, the offerer should lick his or her thumb and leave an imprint on the plant leaves, on the ground, or on a rock near the plant to which the offering is going. Hair may also be offered, but some there is a Verbot against the offering of fingernails or toenails in these situations, and many practitioners include hair in the Verbot. 

Many practitioners have a dedicated "bean jar" that they keep with their gardening or farm equipment. Many also have a small bag or pouch that they take with them wherever they go. This comes in handy when one needs to give an offering, though one may also need to consider safety, too.

For example, one of my students and I were each stung by something tiny that swarmed when another teacher brought down a cracked branch from a tree. None of us was sure what had stung us, but sweat bees (pdc: Schwitzieme) had been seen in the area earlier. 

Since I am allergic to the sting, removed the stinger (which was almost invisible) and I headed toward the school's nurse's office. Along the way, I scooped up some nearby plantain (in this case, it was Broadleaf Plantain; pdc:  Wegdredde or Seiohre; tax: Plantago major, but Narrowleaf Plantain (pdc: Wegerich; tax: Plantago lanceolata) would work just as well). I took two leaves of the plantain, put them in my mouth, and chewed on them until the flavor of the plant's juices became strong. Then I slapped the macerated leaves directly onto the sting site to help to draw the venom out. 

After I had received proper medical attention, my thoughts turned to the disturbed tree branch and the plantain that may have helped me to avoid a bigger problem. The plantain was far enough away from the site of the incident so I was able to express my gratitude and to drop three beans easily enough. However, I was not about to get too close to the tree and potentially invite another sting. Thus, I stood as close as I comfortably could, expressed regret to the tree for the disturbance, and tossed the beans into the grass not too far from the tree.

Thus, in an emergency, do what you have to do to provide treatment to yourself or others, seek out medical treatment, and then return to address offerings later. If a plant has provided you with a healing remedy, though, every effort should be undertaken to return to the plant to give the offering. The healing medium was a gift from the plants, and a return gift is the proper response in Braucherei, Urglaawe, and Heathenry in general. If you are unable to return safely to the site, the offering may be given to a different plant of the same species or added to a fire with an expression of gratitude.



Friday, July 29, 2016

Double Elderberry!

The double elderberry is the Deitsch equivalent to the four-leafed clover.



Finding it in a harvest is said to bring about eighteen times the luck that comes from the normal careful harvesting of elderberries, and consuming it brings about eighteen times the luck of a normal elderberry. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

An Urglaawe Response to the Pulse Massacre


The question has arisen on the main Urglaawe group about how to honor those murdered in the Pulse Massacre. I am thinking this is a time to make use of our color associations. Perhaps six candles:

Red: Representing the blood spilled, calling to Ziu for justice and to Dunner for courage and strength.

Orange: A request to the deities, to the ancestors (our own and those of the victims), to each other, and to ourselves to attain the energy needed to surmount the polarization and hatred that is consuming this world.

Yellow: Our response needs to be appropriately angered, but our love of humanity must be victorious over these hateful actions.

Green: For the growth and expansion of messaging and ideas that toward putting an end to this sort of terror.

Blue: A call for peace and consolation to those who loved the victims.

Violet: Appeal to the sacred and to the things that connect us because, as much as our humanity is what got us into this world plight, it will be our humanity that gets us out.

Per Urglaawe funerary rites, one may also want to get some seeds or something to represent the victims, then wrap the seeds up in four pieces of paper or cloth of different colors. Say the name of a victim while adding each seed.

The first would be red. Set each seed onto a red sheet. The color and action represents the loss of life and blood and the journey to death. Draw a Raidho rune on the red paper pack with the seeds inside.

Then take the red pack and wrap it in yellow-green. Draw the Yaahr/Jera rune on the now yellow-green pack. This represents the commending of the bodies back to nature.

Then take the pack and wrap it in black. Draw the Kenaz rune on it. This represents the Higher Self's journey through The Mill.

Take the pack and wrap it in white. Draw Ingwaz on the pack. This represents the rebirth of those lost into new soul constructs. 

Respectfully place the pack into a sacred fire, asking for Holle to bless the lost.

After that, perhaps add an uncounted number of seeds to a pack formed from purple cloth or paper. Draw the Mannaz rune on that pack, and add it to the fire along with pleads to Ziu, Zisa, and Dunner to aid the victims' loved ones.

I am going to work this into our Dingsege on Saturday. Perhaps if everyone performed the same -- or a related -- ritual at the same time (say, 2:30 PM EDT locally), we can strengthen our cause. 

Feel free to make this idea viral. Perhaps this virus can combat the virus of hate, destruction, and despair that is becoming an epidemic throughout the world.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Es Meliesegraut

One of the "biggies" is now starting to come up. Melissa officinalis, Lemon Balm, known in Deitsch as Meliesegraut, is a great antiviral in the mint family. It also makes a delicious tea that is uplifting to the mind, body, and spirit. The plant is very prolific and will spread rapidly, but it yields a surprisingly small amount of essential oil if put through a still.


I have mentioned Lemon Balm in a few articles in the past, but this lovely little plant is due for its own article at some point, soon. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Observing the Early Greens

Various observances surrounding the appearances of new life, planting, and harvesting were/are common among the Deitsch folks, and these are becoming more popular within the Urglaawe community.

We've really only begun to get some of these described. One that would be about this time would be an observance of the early greens. This is the observance in which the "entity" Luul is said to protect the young greens and seedlings. The information on this is scant historically, but there are some dots that can be connected to Lullus/Lollus, about whom we had a larger discussion in the past.

Among the greens that I'd place into this category, at least in this general area, would be Dead Nettles  (Deitsch: Daabnessel; tax: Lamium purpureum), Ground Ivy (Deitsch: die Grundelrewe; tax: Glechoma hederacea), Chickweed (Deitsch: Hinkeldarrem; tax: Stellaria media), Cuckooflower (also called Pennsylvania Bittercress or Lady's Smock;  Deitsch: Schtruwwlichi Nans; tax: Cardamine pensylvanica and related species). There are, of course, others.

There are medicinal uses for all of these, but among the more esoteric uses are the following:

Purple Deadnettle: A strong stand of Purple Deadnettle appearing in the Fall is said to divine a mild winter. Also, if someone is very ill, then the urine of that person is to be collected at night and poured onto Purple Deadnettles. If the Deadnettles were yellow or dying the next morning, then the ailing person should be expected to die from the current ailment. If the Purple Deadnettles were still green, then the person would be expected to overcome the ailment.

Ground Ivy: Sewn into the seams of skirts, this plant is said to increase the likelihood of pregnancy. Also, wreaths of Ground Ivy worn by elderly women around the waist while dancing on Walpurgisnacht/Wonnenacht are said to ward off old age. Similar stories apply to elderly men and women wearing wreaths on the head while dancing around the Midsummer fire. Also, this is one of the Nine Sacred Herbs of Braucherei.

Chickweed: Said via various methods to divine one's love or to attract love. I am not familiar with most of the methods, but one is similar to picking the leaves off of daisies. If you know chickweed, I am sure you can imagine the challenge presented in picking the petals off of the flowers. Perhaps more "Old World," though, is an odd practice that involves feeding a food chicken chickweed three days before it is to be cleaned and dressed, and then divining things from the entrails. The Deitsch name for the plant, Hinkeldarrem, does indeed mean "chicken guts," but most folks ascribe that to the often messy appearance of the plant.

Cuckooflower: Said to be sacred to any number of faeries and land spirits, likely because of the plant's quick, widespread appearance and the volume of seeds.

All of these can also be used alone or in combination with other herbs to detect witches, remove/block curses, and a couple of them can be used in actually casting curses...