AFA: Blog

Words from the Alsherjargothi

Monthly Archives: August 2017

Berkano

Berkano, Birch Goddess is the mystery of the womb and of the tomb, the nurturing enclosures the bring forth new life and life anew. This feminine rune teaches us about growth and development in a place of safety and concealment. A mother’s womb is a beautiful illustration of this concept, a chamber where a baby develops and forms, safe and protected. This continues through life as a mother shelters and nurtures a child while they learn and grow toward adulthood and victory in the world. The Allfather tells us in his Runatal, “A thirteenth I know: if the new-born son of a warrior I sprinkle with water, that youth will not fail when he fares to war never slain shall he bow before sword.” This metaphor continues in a man’s life (if he is lucky) when he can come home to a loving wife and a warm home where he can breath easy and find nourishment and comfort from the struggles of the day, a warm safe place from which he can emerge and face the world refreshed and clearheaded. Ultimately this continues as our remains go back to the tomb, to “rest in peace” in the loving embrace of Mother Earth before we go on to the next phase of our soul’s existence. We all need a place to go and feel safe and nurtured. We all need to recharge and refresh, to remind ourselves of who we are and what we fight for. Hail the great ladies of our folk who nourish us, those loving women who give us a home and a beautiful future to fight for!

Matthew D. Flavel
Alsherjargothi,
Asatru Folk Assembly

New Military Program Coordinator

Please join me in welcoming Kevin Long as our new Military Program Coordinator. Kevin’s dedication and enthusiasm to our church as well as our Military program is astounding. The needs of our veterans and servicemen are in excellent hands.

Hail those who serve!
Hail Kevin Long!
Hail the AFA Military Program!

Matthew Flavel
Alsherjargothi,
Asatru Folk Assembly

New Apprentice Folkbuilder

I’d like to announce our newest Apprentice Folkbuilder to the Deep South region, Lane Ashby. Jason has relocated to Colorado and Lane has stepped up to fill the void. Lane is very active in his Florida and the founder of the American Crow Kindred. I think he will be a great addition to our leadership team. Looking forward to seeing the progress in the region. Hail to the Folk that do!!

Marc MacLeod
Folkbuilder Coordinator
Asatru Folk Assembly

Tiwaz

Tiwaz, Tyr is the mystery of cosmic order, ever true, constant as the Pole Star. The Tiwaz rune is named for the god Tyr, in fact this name became the word for divinity itself. The roots of Tiwaz go even further back to the ancient Aryan word Deiwos meaning “celestial god”. The Aesir are gods of consciousness and order, shaping an ordered cosmos from chaos, Tiwaz represents that divine order. The Old English Rune Poem tells us “Tiw is a guiding star; well does it keep faith with princes; it is ever on its course over the mists of night and never fails.” The world we live in grows ever more complex, we live in an age where words like “right” and “wrong” are unfashionable and moral choices are dismissed as “shades of grey”. Take heart, Tiwaz teaches us the lesson of moral clarity, principles of order that are timeless and guide us through the thickest mists and the darkest night. This order was visualized by our ancestors as the Irminsul, the world pillar that held up the sky above us and fixed the earth below us. Simplifying things to principles of time honored right and wrong, making judgments from those firm values gives us confidence and surety. Let us all hold our heads high as we stand for order and principle “well does it keep faith with princes” to do so.

Matthew Flavel
Alsherjargothi,
Asatru Folk Assembly

Day of Remembrance for King Radbod of Frisia

Traditionally the Asatru Folk Assembly has celebrated the 9th day of each month with a remembrance day to a hero or well known person relevant to our native folkways. In an effort to make our membership more aware of these important folk heroes and to again honour their memory we will be posting a short article each month on that month’s honoree.

In August we have traditionally celebrated King Raedbed (Radbod) of Frisia. Radbod’s story actually begins with his predecessor, Aldgisl, who, as king, allowed a christian missionary to spread his alien ways across the land. Aldgisl and many of the local sub-chiefs accepted this new faith……within just two years of this missionary’s arrival Aldgisl was replaced by Radbod, who still held true to the ancestral ways, as king.
As with many leaders of his time, Radbod allowed missionaries to enter his land and talk of their new faith. At constant war with his christianized Frankish neighbors Radbod even eventually agreed to be baptised in this new faith, but as the day neared for his baptism he had one nagging question, “What had befell his ancestors who never accepted this alien faith?”
The monk, when asked, in unusually direct and honest fashion answered, “Why those godless heathens are in hell burning alive for all eternity.” Obviously not the answer Radbod was expecting……the christian missionaries were driven from the land, even pushing the Franks completely out of Frisia. His steadfastness gave his people a few more years of freedom from alien oppression. Radbod remained true to his ancestors and their folkways until his death in 719 CE.
What a role model for today, here is a man who took a stand for his ancestors, for his people, when not doing so almost certainly would have been easier. How can we emulate that in our daily lives? How can we channel that honour and integrity in our spiritual path?
First, and foremost, we can honour Radbod with a blessing and draught of the horn in a small remembrance celebration.
We can not back down when alien creeds try to harm us with lies and gossip. Show our pride in our ancestors, our pride in those who forged this path we now tread.
We can meditate on Othila, the final rune in the rune row. The rune of ancestral homelands and of ancestral blood. The sacred enclosure that protects and embodies our folk. Meditate on how our choices and actions can strengthen this enclosure.
Finally, enjoy your freedom. That same freedom that Radbod gave to his people. Stand tall and proud, free of any bedouin taint and giving your children a chance to be strong, free, and true to their ancestral folkways.

Hail Radbod!

Blaine Qualls
Gothar Coordinator,
Asatru Folk Assembly