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  • Writer's pictureSara Ault

Cyclical Time and Our Lore: The Slaying of Ymir

In last month's edition of The Runestone, we discussed how we can view our Lore through the lens of Cyclical Time orientation. We saw the story of Ask and Embla, and how we can interpret the story with cyclical time in mind. This month we'll discuss the slaying of Ymir, and how we can see that continue to unfold right before our eyes. It's important to understand that these are my views, UPG, as it were, and is subject to change as things play out in our time. It is my opinion that our Lore stories can have multiple meanings, some exoteric interpretation and some esoteric. Out of Ymir's flesh was fashioned the earth, And the mountains were made from his bones; The sky from the frost-cold giant's skull, And the ocean out of his blood. - Vafþrúðnismál, Poetic Edda, Bellows Translation “Then Gangleri said, ‘I hear of great happenings. It was wondrous work and skillfully done, but how was the earth set in order?’ Then High answered: ‘It is circular around the edge and surrounding it lies the deep sea. On these ocean coasts, the sons of Bor gave land to the clans of the giants to live on. But further inland they built a fortress wall around the world to protect against the hostility of the giants. As material for the wall, they used the eyelashes of the giant Ymir and called this stronghold Midgard [Middle Earth]. They took his brain, threw it up into the air, and from it they made the clouds.” Gylfaginning, Prose Edda We can see that the earth was fashioned from the body of Ymir. Another way of viewing this passage exoterically, is that in our world, society began to take root. The establishment of order, both cosmically and here in Midgard. The creation story has parallels in our history as a people. As we discussed last month, the first generation of our Folk were given consciousness, sacrality, and goodly hue. Now the slaying of Ymir could represent our Folk putting things in order. In Today’s Asatru, we can also find parallel circumstances. From our Lore, we understand the Ymir was what existed before. It was refashioned by Odin in his tripartite form to make the dwelling of man. We, as a church and as a folk, have refashioned places of worship and dedicated them to our Gods. Parkers Grove Methodist Church existed in Linden NC for over 100 years. The Asatru Folk Assembly purchased that property and the buildings and refashioned them towards the spiritual needs of our people. What existed before was not beneficial to our current needs. What exists now is akin to the body of what was, but repurposed, beneficial, and provides a sanctuary for our Gods, and their worship. This is not, of course, the only example. We have repurposed 4 temples in total for the needs of Modern Asatruar. They are, Óðinshof, Brownsville CA, Þórshof, Linden, NC, Baldrshof, Murdoch, MN and finally Njörðshof, White Springs, FL. These are all examples of using that which was, into that which is in line with Cosmic Order, that which is beneficial. It is my hope that you find this beneficial. Our lore should rarely be taken literally. But, there is truth in it. We can see it happening in front of our very eyes. Asatru is what we do. It isn’t just stories. The Asatru Folk Assembly has no peer in this regard. Our continued success is proof that we are on the right path with the blessings of our Gods.

Gothi Daniel Young


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