So, I’ve been trying to do a daily practice of lighting a candle on my altar and sitting there for a bit. So far I’ve managed to keep it up, missing only a couple days. So I’m happy. One of the things I’ve been doing is asking the Gods and Goddesses on my altar to show me things I should be mindful of and drawing a pair of runes for each of them.
So the other day I asked Thor, Freyja, and Hel, what I should be mindful of. And the last two (Thor, I believe) came up as Initiation and Ice. Now, I first thought this meant initiations were being frozen, since Isa generally means ice, frozen, stasis, etc. But then I looked at the other four and thought I saw what might be a message. A message that pretty much talked about the beginning of an initiation with Ice.
And despite Scandinavia being a land of snow, we only have two deities of winter. And of those two, only one has had any sort of connection to me. Skadi
This was made more so by the fact that the day before I’d hit the thrift store and picked up a couple more picture frames (I’m getting addicted to printing out the occasional picture and putting it in a frame ever since I stared with my travel altar). One of them, I found, made me think it would be good for Skadi, as I have a couple nice images of her. So I got it, printed the pic, but it in there, and had set it aside over with my travel altar, because I’ve thought about getting some shelves to go above my altar and putting up pics of the other gods and goddesses there, so I have them, but they aren’t in my direct worship area unless I need them.
And here I get this message about a new beginning and initiation of Ice. I like to half joke that the reason I get so many storms in the area is because Thor is around a lot more. I say half joke, because most people think I’m joking and I’m being completely serious. So getting this message, having the picture right there, and the rather surprising cold snap we’ve gotten has got me wondering if Skadi hasn’t popped by to express her interest in me. What interest that is, I’m not sure.
Skadi is probably one of the more unique Gods in the Norse Pantheon. She started out as a Jotun, or Giant, specifically a Frost Giant. She was the daughter of Thiazi, a powerful Jotun who could shape shift and forced Loki to give him Idunn, the goddess who grew the golden apples that kept the gods young and strong. He was killed by the gods while pursuing Loki, who had rescued Idunn (lest the gods kill him instead). Skadi then donned her war gear and went to Asgard for revenge. She managed to negotiate for three things in order to lay aside her vengeance, the Gods had to make her laugh, Odin made her father’s eyes into stars, and she got an Asgardian husband.
Odin made the eyes of Thiazi into stars with little trouble. Making the Giantess laugh though, was much harder, and only happened when Loki tied his balls to a billy goat’s beard. Hilarity ensued, and Skadi laughed. At last it was time for Skadi to gain a husband, but by craft she had to chose by the feet, without seeing the rest of the man. So she looked at their feet, and picked the most beautiful pair she found, thinking them to belong to Balder, the most beautiful god there was, for nothing of him could be ugly. Yet it was not Balder, but Njordr the Vanic God of the Sea and fishing.
Despite the mix up, Skadi and Njordr found that they quite liked each other. Sadly, however, they could not stand the others homes. Skadi lived in the mountains, far from the sea that Njordr loved, while he lived by or in the sea, far from Skadi’s mountains and hunting grounds. In one of the few cases of both a separation and it being amicable, Skadi and Njordr parted, though they still care deeply for each other it is said.
Some theorize that Scandinavia actually comes from Skadi, something like Skadi’s Island. This is somewhat disputed, but it is a pretty cool idea.
As I said, I have some slight connection to some of Skadi’s areas. My main character on an mmorpg that I play sometimes is called Skadisen, and he’s a hunter. I took archery classes, well, almost ten years ago and despite being blind as a bat (no one listened when I said I couldn’t see crap, so I didn’t have glasses) I managed to be the fourth/fifth best archer in the class. Had I actually been able to see, I suspect I’d have placed higher. I like archery, and hunting and wandering around as a hunter appeals to me. I hate the cold though, but no one is perfect, lol.
So now I have a new image upon my altar, and a new goddess to ask for advice. Where it leads, I don’t know, but life’s in the adventure.