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2507Re: What is Sidir?

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  • Anthony W. McPherson
    Jun 14 2:59 AM
      A bit indepth and rambling, but I hope this helps.

      "Magic" of which seidir is a part, is the manipulation and / or use
      of Wyrd(sort of "what will happen by our own actions" and he gods
      intervention) and Orlog (sort of "natural law") in a way that we as
      humans in general cannot explain as we can in the subject we
      call "science". In science we can explain where wood goes when it is
      burned to ashes, or water when it evaporates. Science is just the
      part of Orlog that we can understand. If we make the wood or water
      disappear in a way that science cannot yet explain, then we are
      performing "magic".
      From a Theological point of view, it is simply using the powers
      around and from within us, which we cannot explain away by "science",
      but of course that is from OUR point of view. To the Christians and
      Moslems, only their different gods can work outside of our
      known "science", and all others are "worshipping Satan" or some other
      devil or demon of their religion.
      After the coming of the Christian religions, anything practiced by
      our holy men and women was "Black Magic" and any magic performed by
      their "holy men" was a "Miracle".
      According to more than a few researchers, including Grimm in
      his "Teutonic Mythology", any Magic along with any other subject that
      an outsider (or many "insiders" for that matter) would call "Magic"
      or anything similar, were performed primarily by the older people and
      folk of a certain type For the most part. Elderly Women, "Dead to
      love and labor" who had a knowledge of some herblore and cooking from
      decades of experience, and Older Shepherds (those with jobs not
      requiring constant mental work-outs or attention and physical stress
      who can stop and think for long periods of time). The younger men
      had their time taken up with farming, adventuring (a few), warring
      and defense of the stead while younger women were busy with the
      keeping of the hall, and rearing of the children. Remember, this was
      a time when the children were actually raised, and that was the duty
      of the women to teach them and stear them on the right path. Men
      taught more of the "mechanics" of life.
      Some rituals could be thought of as "magic" of a sort, but that is
      simply the gods being asked to act. "Magic" as I use the term here
      is more of the actions of the person, with some assistance of the
      gods and goddesses in some cases.
      There are few hard lines drawn between the different types
      of "magic", many "gray areas" and borders between the different types
      exist. Many times people hold more than one skill or discipline and
      the crossover is just a natural occurrence. The following is a
      generalization only!

      Galdr: is the casting of magic by chanting or singing. The gods and
      goddesses, especially ODIN and BALDER are very much impressed, and
      therefore influenced, by Poetry and Song. Verse and/or song
      would "get their attention", especially if the song was well sung and
      the lyrics of the song or words of the poem were witty, sincere,
      uplifting, honorable or ins some other way pleasing to them. The
      words and music are also a type of "offering" or sacrifice which they
      might appreciate, if not just a "jingle" to attract their attention.
      This would include some of the runic type of magic, but not
      necessarily all, and not all Galdr is Runic. This has been a
      powerful type of magic in many cultures throughout history.
      Lullabies were originally a charm sung over a baby before it went to
      sleep to protect him or her from wights that would harm them in the
      Love songs were originally "charms" or "spells" to win your intended.
      Little verses spoken or sung at different jobs or duties originated
      as galdr, but today are just "silly little childhood songs". I
      remember my mother and both grandmothers telling me of little thymes
      that they sung or recited at different times while performing
      different jobs. To them, they were just "little ditties" to pass the
      time while doing as repetitious chore. In the more modern times,
      they were correct, but the origin of those "little ditties" came from
      galdr, such as this verse to make cream churn into butter faster:

      Come butter come
      Come butter come
      Johnny waits by the gate
      With a warm buckwheat cake
      Come butter come

      The previous verse was probably a more modern version of the charm or
      spell, but it remains never the less. Also, I remember there was the
      verse for planting some seeds (in more modern, post Columbus times,
      this particular verse usually referred to the planting of corn) which
      shows a sacrifice to some of nature`s creatures, the land wight and a
      tribute from the worker to The Karl (land owner):

      (while planting seeds, one seed for each line of the charm)
      One for the chicken
      One for the crow
      One for the farmer
      And one to grow

      There were also songs for doing laundry, milking cows and just about
      everything else. If you have elderly relatives from a rural
      background or recent immigrants from Europe they may be able to give
      you many more examples of these little songs. Many of the old ways
      are entombed in a series of books (my gods are they good)
      called "FOXFIRE", which is a sort of "how to" series on how to do
      everything from building a still in "hillbilly country" to making a
      flintlock rifle to skinning a bear and planting a garden. Being of
      the U.S. southern culture, the entire society was of course
      Christianized and changed to suit the new land and situations, but
      you can see the old ways and catch a glimpse of Old World beliefs
      shining through in many of the stories, and instructions.
      Your success depends upon your own power, dedication, concentration
      and / or the powers that are being worked on your behalf by a
      benevolent deity or spirit. You may "do everything correct" and have
      energies and powers, but it strong enough spiritual/deity force is
      opposed to you, you will fail. On the other hand, you can be a total
      looser when it comes to ability in magic and succeed when those same
      forces are with you.
      When performing galdr, again depending upon what is working with or
      against you, the poem or song may be repeated many times (making it
      into sort of a chant if it is short enough) or only once if it is
      forceful enough and thought to have accomplished its purpose.
      Unfortunately YOU will have to figure out which works for you, and
      even which works for you in particular situations. If you are really
      luck, you will receive that information from the gods themselves and
      have the "guess work taken out of it altogether. You will also have
      to figure out which works better for you, singing, chanting or
      reciting poetry-type charms/spells.
      The attempt might b as elaborate as a full ritual as described in the
      GENERAL OUTLINE FOR A RITE OR RITUAL, from the previous section of
      this NOTEBOOK, or as simple as Hammer Hallowing an area and sitting
      comfortably in a quiet room, in the woods, a field, hilltop,
      waterfall or wherever you might meet with success. Concentration
      usually results in better success than relying on "window dressing",
      but sometimes both are necessary. In other words, don't work so hard
      on the "show" of a ritual that you let your concentration on the
      desired outcome low ebb.
      Within galdr, you might find other types of magic, or use galdr in
      other types, especially magic using runes when they are sung or the
      rune poem is spoken.

      Spa: is a skill or gift for telling the future or prophecy. This
      could be done with Runes, trances, or reading other signs. If the
      power is strong with you, you might not need anything in particular,
      it will just come to you.
      When using runes, calling upon deities and / or getting into a mental
      state in order to receive information on the future, most use galdr.
      Some of the deities to call upon are ODIN, SAGA and, if you think
      that you can persuade her to communicate what she knows, FRIGGA (who
      is said to NEVER reveal what she knows of the future). The mental
      trance-like state that many go into is often self imposed by chanting
      to the deities for that purpose, or chanting certain runes to attain
      that state.

      Seidr: takes many definitions, or at least many different abilities.
      Healing, mental magic & manipulation, channeling spirits, mind and
      weather control, and other abilities. FREYA is a good one for this
      although others can be chosen depending upon the reason and target
      for and of the Seidr.
      If runes are used as the power or tool for the work, and the names,
      rune-poems or sounds are sung, or a chant is used to call the deity
      desired for support, again, galdr is used. If channeling spirits and
      speaking with the dead for information on the future is used, then
      spa is also used.

      As you see, you can "jump" from one "type" of magic to another
      without really planning to do so, it's a "come as you are needed"
      type party.
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