GoFundMe for Heathen (including Urglaawe) Presence at World Parliament of Religions

This year, for the first time, there will be a Heathen presence at the Parliament of the World's Religions in Salt Lake City, UT (October 15-19). This is a significant opportunity for Heathen leaders to engage and to network with leaders of other religions. This event will increase the visibility of Heathenry in the public eye and set a precedent for inclusion in future endeavors.

The Parliament will feature the following Heathen presentations:

"Staving off Ragnarök: A Heathen Response to Climate Change" (Diana Paxson) on Saturday, October 17 at 10:00 AM


"Rebuilding the Altars: Reconstructing Indigenous Pagan Faiths for Today" (Diana Paxson, Robert L. Schreiwer, Erynn Laurie, Elisheva Nesher, Kirk Thomas, and Gwendolyn Reese) on Sunday, October 18 at 8:15 AM.

Additionally, there will be a Heathen information booth (#878) with pamphlets and books for distribution and sale. An Urglaawe altar will be present in a shared Pagan Faiths space somewhere in rooms A-G in sections 150 or 151 (clarifying information will be provided as it becomes available).

All of this costs money, so a GoFundMe effort has been set up to help to defray the participants' costs. If you are unable to donate money, please help by passing along the link.

Thank you!

Die Entschtanning Kummt Aa

Grundsaudaag - Friggsege - Butzemannsege
Sunndaag, 1. Hanning, 2015
Schlegelschteddel, Deitscherei

Retrospective on the Landnemmung (Landtaking) Rites of Urglaawe

As of September 26, 2014, the Alder Zimmerman Graabhof (Old Zimmerman Cemetery) and the Lüsch-Müsselman Graabhof (Lusch-Musselman Graveyard) came under the full legal control of Distelfink Sippschaft Ziewer, Robert L. Schreiwer. The description of the landtaking rites below emanated from discussions within the Urglaawe Braucherei/Hexerei guilds on Facebook on October 5.


Urglaawe landtaking ceremonies are based partially on Braucherei/Hexerei practices, partially on overarching Heathen ways of relating to the land, and partially on the individual claiming the new land.

I was asked a bit about today's ritual, and I realized that there are quite a few steps to it. In the current era, it is rare that one purchases or acquires land so close to his/her earlier residence that a parade of humans, cattle, wagons, etc. could be timed so that the leaders of the migration are arriving at the new destination just as the last of the participants are departing from the old residence. We have had to adjust that practice to fit longer moves, the lower likelihood of cattle, etc. The advantage to this adjustment is that we can avoid having to worry about days where there are superstitions or even Verbots (bans or taboos) on driving cattle or positioning cattle within a move. 

Today I brought with me many items to be included in the ritual, including a Thor's Hammer for burial, several food offerings that have significance in the Deitsch culture and customs and elemental items, which is where the topic starts to relate to the guilds a bit more closely.

The connection of the hearths (or any primary location of fire) plays a major role. In my response to Amy's question, I cited an old Deitsch adage or superstition that homesickness begins when one can no longer see the smoke from his/her mother's chimney or fire. This sentiment is addressed in the transfer of fire. I burned a fire in Bristol this morning. I took the hot embers out, and placed them in an ember box. Ember boxes have a long history of being used to carry "shared" fires within communities, particularly at Groundhog Day. 

In this case, the embers are split at the new site. Some are allowed to cool and are strewn about the new property. The rest are to be used as part of a new fire there (started with birch), thus connecting the two fires. Since I am retaining the house in Bristol, the ember box had a role on the other end, with embers and ashes from the new fire being brought to the fire pit here at home.

Water is one of the easier aspects to transfer. The water from home is poured as part of a verbal claiming of the land, but it is also used to water plants and to clean some objects, etc. 

Earth is also easy. Soil is brought from the first property and used in transplanting, etc.

Air is the interesting one. We have discussed in some threads on the Fiber Arts Guild's site the concept of cloth being used as sources of static energy, etc. Here we see something similar. A cloth is dampened at the first location and is hung out to dry (reflecting a permeation of air). The cloth is then taken to the new location and hung out to allow the air to exude over the new territory. If I had a structure at the cemetery, I would have had that cloth in the middle the kitchen or family room. As part of the return, I dampened the cloth in the dew of the cemetery property (there is no spigot there), allowed it to dry, and brought it back to Bristol. It is hanging outside now.

I think most of us can get the concept of the importance of transplanting herbs or crops to a new location. I have no animal herds to take with me (ten indoor cats do not count), but I ensured that the soil I took and spread out had worms and other critters in it as part of the transfer. I also brought some soil back from the cemetery to here. 

The best I could do with water on the return was to collect some dew on the wet grass and to bring it back in a bottle. lol

Some of the herbs I took happened to be conveniently already in pots. The soapwort, in particular, falls into that category. I had a lot of yarrow in pots already, but I would have gone out of my way to dig some of it up if I did not already have it available. I took up four elder cuttings that recently rooted. Elder is extremely important due to its association with Holle. It is not uncommon to find Elder at cemeteries in this region anyway (in fact, there apparently used to be American Elder on the cemetery grounds but the plants are gone now). 

I had some Mugwort that grew in a pot this year, and that most definitely has importance in Urglaawe spirituality and Deitsch herbalism. Dotted Mint (Monarda punctata) is one of my favorite plants, so I took some of that, and I had some Catmint from the big cutback I had to do earlier this year. Now it has a nice home at the cemetery. I also had some Boneset, which is great for attracting pollinators (and has some highly effective herbalism properties). Last, but not least, I put some Catnip in the ground. If all the farm cats up there don't get it, it will produce a nice crop next year. All of these herbs (particularly Elder, Mugwort, and Yarrow) carry energy from the land they sprang from and will add it in to the soil at the new location.

Landtaking also includes other aspects: walking the perimeter, scattering ashes and salt, offering a portion of the last meal in the old location to the spirits of the new location, and eating a meal at the new location. If there were a permanent structure at the site, I would have done a house blessing, which can take several hours to do. lol

The cemetery is now taken and is connected to my home here in Bristol, and the central section is now dedicated Urglaawe land.

The First Book of Urglaawe Myths

After three years of engaging in interview, piecing together the notes from those interviews, and connecting dots in our folklore, we are pleased to present The First Book of Urglaawe Myths. There is, of course, a reason that it is called the "first" book; there are still more notes to pore through! Cryptozoological creatures, deity interactions, and ancestor interventions are all here!

This little booklet consists of eight myths, most of which have been published on the Deitsch Mythology blog in the past. 

All profits from the sale of this book go to Distelfink Sippschaft's operations, which include engaging with the community to find the myths, remnants of myths, and folklore that is critical to understanding the Heathen mindset in the Urglaawe context.

Response to the Overland Park, KS, Accused Shooter's Religion

News media outlets are reporting that the accused shooter in Overland Park was an adherent of Odinism

We abhor the appropriation of any Heathen identity for racist and bigoted agendas. We reject e the abuse of our religion as a justification for hateful and abominable actions. We condemn the violence and hatred that are at the root of this story.

Let us all hail the victims and remember their names:

Terri LaManno
William Lewis Corporon
Reat Griffin Underwood

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends of the victims of this unconscionable act.

An Urglaawe Thanksgiving Musing

I saw the post below (at the bottom of this commentary) on the Facebook status update of a friend. 

There are many truths inside this status. There are quite a few folks, many of whom I know personally, who are one missing paycheck away from losing their homes or cars, etc. These kinds of difficulties have many origins, including the current economy. Many aspects of these problems are beyond our immediate or even long-term control, and there are many people who need a hand up (not so much a handout) in order to get back on track. 

Some aspects are self-induced. We live in a culture that, for some odd reason, advances the chaotic force of rootlessness, encouraging people to shun totally any notion of being "too close to people" or having anyone "all up in my business." I can understand this to some degree, but, as a society, we are, to use an old expression, "throwing the baby out with the bath water." Akin to this rootlessness is the utter Blitzkrieg of Black Friday, which is now undermining one of major "connection" holidays of the year with the implied promise of satisfaction being achieved through going shopping. From the Urglaawe perspective, these forms of rootlessness are to be shunned because they destroy the very fabric of our social order. 

There are, of course, plenty of people going through grief, loss, or physical challenges that make the holidays rougher. Some of these are temporary conditions; others are chronic problems that are the largest challenges. Each individual has a responsibility to work through these problems and to attempt not to be defined by them. The wider community has a responsibility to recognize the existence of attempts to surmount these problems and to be supportive towards those who experienced recent challenges and towards those who are working hard to change their own definition of themselves in the face of adversity. 

This comment is meant neither to "rain on the parade" nor to urge everyone to be more appreciative of their life situation. Instead, it is meant as a reminder that we all have a role in changing our society's mindset from rootlessness to a sense of cooperative interdependence from a premise of appropriate compassion coupled with personal responsibility. This may be a utopian pipe dream, but there are no rules that say all dreams have to be small or easy. 

------ Quoted text below ------ 

 FOR any of my friends who may be alone: It's important to remember that not everyone is surrounded by large wonderful families. Some of us have problems during the holidays and sometimes are overcome with great sadness when we remember the loved ones who are not with us. And, many people have no one to spend these times with and are besieged by loneliness. We all need caring thoughts and loving prayer right now. If I don't see your name, I'll understand. May I ask my friends wherever you might be, to kindly copy, paste, and share this status for one hour to give a moment of support to all those who have family problems, health struggles, job issues, worries of any kind and just need to know that someone cares. Do it for all of us, for nobody is immune. I hope to see this on the walls of all my friends just for moral support. I know some will! I did it for a friend and you can too! (You have to copy & paste this one, no sharing.)

Plan Your Yuletide Meals Now!

While no meal rules cross all denominations of Heathenry or even all kindreds or individuals within a given denomination, this describes Distelfink's Yuletide meal practices.

In Urglaawe, "days" begin at sundown on the preceding night. Thus, Yule actually begins at sundown on Friday, December 20 and ends at sundown on Wednesday, January 1.

Friday, December 20: The meal Urglaawer eat at this time consists of goose, which is sacred to the goddess Holle. In Urglaawe, She is among the principle deities, and this meal is religiously important due to Yule's association with Her.  Because Yule is twelve days long, though, this particular meal can be done at anytime throughout the Yuletide. 

Tuesday, December 31: Zwelfdi Nacht, or Twelfth Night, starts at sundown. This is the Berchtaslaaf, or the Progression of Berchta. Berchta has a commanded meal on December 31 that consists of any sort of fish (herring is most typical) and gruel, dumplings, or oatmeal (Grimm's Teutonic Mythology vol. 1 p. 273). One may consume other food in addition to the Berchta's ordered feast, if they give portions of their food up as offerings.

Wednesday, January 1:  New Year's Day is also Zwelfder Daag, or Twelfth Day, and is the Feast of Frey. Pennsylvania German tradition and Urglaawe rule is the consumption of pork and sauerkraut on that day. Both pork and sauerkraut are sacred to the god Frey and represent blessings and bounty in the New Year. 

Macht's immer besser!