On Yule

Vidrir you call me, Thunderer, Lord of Storms, when the winter weather arrives. Do you have any idea what that means? The storm I rule is the thunder of the Hunt — hooves thundering through the heavens, the storm clouds flung up behind them as they pass. I ride at Yuletide and the people still fear me. But they have made of me a demon, consigned to the darkness along with the trolls. In the Merry month even the trolls are released from their bondage — not surprising that the gods should be freed as well. Hail me as Vidrir, but know that I am also Herne, and in that aspect I share some powers with Freyr, just as in lordship he shares some with me.

But you would do better to invoke me as Wunsch at this time of year. As the wishlord I can bring gifts to houses. But if you consider Wish, you must also consider Need. . . Need is the Wish you cannot deny. Freyr may grant you peace and good seasons; Thor gives rain and strength. When my hunt thunders through the sky, it brings terror and also ecstasy.

Who are the winter kings? Thor in his red coat, Freyr sleeping under the mound in his white coat, and I, clad in darkest green. If we three kings had come to the baby Jesus, we might have brought a different inheritance. Gold, indeed, but a horn of mead and a sword would be the others.

If you wish the ecstasy of the Night Ride and not the fear, you must be aware of the gifts of the wild. When the trolls are out, inhibitions are lowered. In Yuletide revelling it is the same. for a few days folk are free. Why have I been knocking? You called, all of you — did you not expect me to come? Many have called me who would tremble if I came. Men have called me greedy of lives, and that is true, but not to die, but to live. Living is far more difficult at times.

At this time, it is the world’s night. In that darkness, all life sleeps, and folk watch and stoke their fires and hope that Light will return.

We (the gods) are the light in that darkness. Against the darkness of the soul our light shines more brightly still. Do not fear the dark therefore, look within and you will find the holy gods. We sit on high, the shining ones. At this time we are focused down to essence. We wait, silent and without motion, at the turning point of time, at that still moment which is the hinge of the year. This is the Holy Night, My night. If you can make yourself still, and open your heart, I will come . . .

Remember this space of peace. When the stress becomes overwhelming, and tears your soul, you must return to the light in the darkness; here is truth, here is holiness; here is power….

But that tells you only how to endure it, not how to solve the problems. There are many modes of loving. I have sought out many women, and many men, and to each of them I give a different gift, and from each I receive a different gift, and from each I learn something new. I desire that you shall all be different, unique and special.