Since my last entry for the Runestone, there has been a change in my life. As a lot of you already know, about two weeks ago at Sigrblot at Sigrheim, I was given the honor and privilege of swearing my Oath to take up the ring and stole and serve the folk as a Gothi. I am honored and grateful for the opportunity, and this month I want to take a few minutes of your time to tell you why.
Standing up on Tyr’s Ridge, on the future site of his temple, speaking of victories past, present, and future, I was struck with the feeling of wholeness. Everything was going just the way it should, the rightness of it was palpable. Yes, myself and everyone else there were sweaty and some of us were a bit more gassed than others from the climb, but every face that I could see was smiling, every bit of conversation I overheard was positive and joyous.
As the Alsherjargothi dedicated the Sword of Týrshof, and gave it its name, Relentless, the holiness of those moments could not and cannot be described in mere words, but suffice it to say, that it was so moving that grown men prone to constant stoicism were moved to tears. But those tears were joyous, pious, and soul-mending. So glad and content were my heart and soul, that when I was asked if I wanted to take my Oath, it felt like this moment was always going to happen, that it was meant to be.
I was fortunate to share the honor of being the first two Oaths sworn on that holy relic with Folkbuilder Tyler Bethea, who has many times over demonstrated his relentless spirit to his Folk, his Ancestors, and his Gods. He is a great reminder of the level of devotion, piety, and will that we all should aspire to ourselves.
So, what does being relentless look like for me? What are the yardsticks that I’m measuring this quality by?
I will be relentless in my Oath to educate the Folk. There are few things here in Midgard that I love more than teaching people about our Lore and our history. Our story is so vast, varied, complex, unique, and amazing, that I want all of you to know as much as you want to learn. The more you learn of the immense body of knowledge and wisdom passed down to us, the more it sinks into your bones, and the more pious you become.
I will be relentless in my piety, as an example to the Folk. This is what separates us from those in the world today that merely put on the costume, those who are pious when it’s convenient or for show. Asatru isn’t a social club, and it isn’t a hobby. This is the very real faith of our Ancestors and it should be treated as such. To that end, I will strive every day to cultivate, elevate, and maintain my understanding and connection to our Ancestors and the Gods. By doing so, I will be better equipped to lead the folk in finding their own relationship with the Holy Powers.
I will be relentless in my love for our Church and our Folk. I believe in what we’re doing with all my heart and soul. I have and will continue to take every opportunity to celebrate us and everything about us. Love for ourselves as a folk must be at the center of everything we do; it is normal and natural to love your Folk, no matter what the modern world tells you. I will do my best to encourage our Folk to do the same and continue to seek out that which is beautiful and good about us and share it often.
I will be steadfast in my Loyalty to our Church. What we have in the AFA is unique, it is Good, and it must endure for generations to come. An unfortunate fact of life is that as soon as Good begins to stack victories, evil in all its forms is out for blood. It is also unfortunate that our own worst enemy is often ourselves. To combat this, I will be loyal to our Gods, my Ancestors, and Our Church. By this example, I will empower my folk to continue to build on the bright fame we are winning every day in the AFA.
Lastly, I will give wise rede to my Folk. As one of your priests, it is my duty to stand by you, all of you, through thick and thin. I do not see this as a burdensome chore, but rather my calling in this life. I am always going to make time for you, to the best of my abilities, day and night. If I don’t know the answer, I’m going to find someone who does.
As my dear friend Witan Young said up on Tyr’s Ridge, I just exude joy when I’m around my Folk. I love our Church; I love my Folk.
Gothi Bodi Mayo