On People and Places

The Balkans were ever a home of contention. There is a madness there, and others must not be sucked in. There are dangers in acting and dangers in doing nothing. Do not pray that your leaders take a predestined course, but that they learn to listen and sense the changes in the wind. They must send those who are flexible and can seize the moment to deal with the warring tribes. Each day, draw a rune, and send them that energy.

The people of Holland live where sea and land become one. This is why there are so many who walk the threshold, they are the people of the threshold, never entirely certain whether they belong to the sea or the land. As the folk in the south of California never know if the earth will be solid, the Dutch never know whether the sea will sweep them away. They are between the worlds already, and they build dykes to keep that knowledge away. In that land you will have to teach them to go outside the dykes.

They have survived for so many years by building walls, by building tight walls. And yet they know how vulnerable those walls are, deep in their souls they know. But the shaman goes beyond the walls where the people fear to go. They are called to be shamans to their people. That is what they must be prepared to do. … The Jotnar they fear are those who live in the sea. They must learn to see their vulnerability as an advantage. They are already on the threshold, if they are willing to open the door and let down the walls.

Germans put up fences because they do not know who they are. They fear the new people because they do not yet know who the old people are. Because they were so many peoples. They are not Germans, they are Saxons, they are Bavarians, they are Westphalians. And so they have to take the name from outside because they do not have one within. I think the river may help them. The river and all the rivers that feed it, I think it is water that flows through the soul. There are words that you cannot say to them; they are still true, but they do not understand their true meaning. Do not speak of Blood and Soil. Speak of Water and Soil.

They were so close to being right. There are things that even I do not like to remember. They had great power. Enough power for a time to bind even me to their vision, and they wanted it so badly, and they called upon one of my faces, and that was what they saw. I was there and those who accuse me say true. They came so close. Then they turned. They sought the path of power and forgot the path of sacrifice and they were sacrificed. Their blood in part wiped out the debt, but their spirits return now and they must live with the reality that to them is far worse than the one they sought to destroy. The Other always comes back in another way. It cannot be destroyed, it must be transformed. Those they destroyed were not so different from them as they thought. Those whom they now hate and must find a way to live with are far more different. And yet this is the fate they wished upon themselves. They would not accept those [the Jews], and now they must accept these [the Turks]. It is the heirs of those who killed who must now seek peace. That is their inheritance, and the only way that it may be done is by strengthening the soul of the land so that it will speak to all who are born there, whatever their blood. And they will forget much of their old ways and become children of the land.

All things begin with the spirit. They are trying very hard. They are trying to find what the new rules are so that they can obey them. They are so conscientious. When you teach them you must give them rules or they will not be happy.

They were many who became a nation in name — now all of Europe becomes a nation in name. We shall speak to those who speak my tongue first. In the other lands it may be needful to call upon other names. But that is another task in another time. The Rhine flows through many territories, it nourishes all. And the Dana flows through many. One day, folk must find the place between the sources of those two rivers, for there is the heart. There are those who have sought the place already. This mind does not have the knowledge, only a little of it, but the place is there between the rivers, between their sources, and from that place all of Europe can be transformed. Find those who know how rivers run and how mountains are formed to find the place.

A work that is done there will be like a stone cast into a pond. The work that the Norwegians did (the Olympics’ opening & closing ceremonies) was like a stone that cast ripples because the folk who were gathered there came from all the nations and in their hearts the spark was kindled, the seed was planted.

I am the god of the English, whether or not they know it. They serve me in the life of the mind. Coifi’s defection meant nothing. I still speak in every sentence you make. But the time comes now for consciousness to be more — conscious. Intended, directed. I have been covert, now the time comes for me to be overt. Also, if you work in England to bring me through in the aspect I wear for you, the power of the aspect in which I am called by others will weaken. Fortunately they are not skilled in magic. My force must be earthed — in the earth of England — for it to have full effect.

The book you read now [A biography of Albert Speer] is worthy. In one sense all these people torture themselves needlessly — sheer numbers do not make a crime more hideous. It is as evil to murder one innocent as six million. And as they say, your own people have done such things as well. To say that the extent ot the crime sets those involved apart and makes them monsters evades the issue. Any human can be monstrous. More interesting is the process of self-examination [that Speer put himself through], his “demon work”. That is something you might investigate, although not in the manner of the breast beaters. You seek not to wallow in guilt, but to achieve understanding.

What they call morality I call honor. Tyr spoke to you about it. Live by your inner law, be true to yourself. That is part of it– but that self must be worthy of troth. The eternal soul, of course is always worthy, but being true to yourself does not mean enshrining all your old bad habits. That is the self-referential standard you objected to before.

So what are the cornerstones of your own integrity?

To identify and admit your own motivations is one of them.

Do you know any others? Think — is the greatest good enough to justify individual betrayals? Or must you be faithful in little things to be loyal in great ones? There are no easy answers, no ten commandments. You might try to think of some . . .

Here is a principle — that is good which helps individuals fulfill their potential and play their part in the larger plan.

Another — service to the greater good which is accomplished by perverting an individual (a person or a single good?) is in the end counterproductive. The ends do not justify the means. The end, if achieved by evil means, will be itself tainted. Death is not the worst fate.

Act for the good of your community, without forgetting individuals. Accept criticism for what it can teach you, but do not internalize it. You yourself are your only judge. Call upon your godself for guidance in understanding who you truly are and what you truly believe.

This land seems wrapped in winter to your eyes, but the bare trees and brown earth are deceptive. They hold the promise of spring. Your people are the same. They look about and see threats, constraints, hostility, but I see potential. Do not expend all your energy in self-protection. When you wall yourself off defensively, nothing can get through, not the enemy, who is not so powerful as you fear, and not the sunlight either.

In the shadow of the World Tree, a Shrub is only a minor annoyance. Paranoia can be a self-indulgence. You think you must be important if someone bothers to persecute you. But it is ignorance you have to deal with here, not hostility, at least not yet.

Look for ways to strengthen and deepen your roots in the communities where you live. Improve communications. The coordinated action of focused wills can achieve much. Spend this time in identifying areas on which you can all agree, positive actions, not negative. If you fight you will be weak. Work along the lines of power that already exist. The Devil can quote scripture, and so can I, or at least the Constitution!

You are just as patriotic as the Christians, perhaps more so. Because you, like new immigrants, don’t take those protections for granted. You are in truth just another in a long line of divergent, diverse, individualistic movements in America. Weird religious movements have been a part of this country since the beginning. The country was founded on tolerance between persecuted religious minorities. The Established Church was always in a minority here.

Make an offering to the local wights to bless your work. Not only will that help, but you will be teaching the others something about our tradition.