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  1. #1
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    Working with Germanic gods

    I'm considering working with some Germanic gods. Mostly due to the fact that I have both Anglo-Saxon and German ancestry and I'm leaning towards more the Anglo-Saxon side of things. I've felt the call for quite a while but have put it off.

    The thing is however, I'm terrified of working with them. Unlike some other European pantheons such as the Irish or Romans, they seem to me to be very dark, intimidating and temperamental deities. As a result, they scare the crap out of me and it's holding me back from engaging with them.

    Has this been anybody else's experience with them? Can anybody offer any advice for my current situation?

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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanze View Post
    I'm considering working with some Germanic gods. Mostly due to the fact that I have both Anglo-Saxon and German ancestry and I'm leaning towards more the Anglo-Saxon side of things. I've felt the call for quite a while but have put it off.

    The thing is however, I'm terrified of working with them. Unlike some other European pantheons such as the Irish or Romans, they seem to me to be very dark, intimidating and temperamental deities. As a result, they scare the crap out of me and it's holding me back from engaging with them.

    Has this been anybody else's experience with them? Can anybody offer any advice for my current situation?
    You are not alone, many people who wish to work with Norse deities often feel the same way, myself included. Some gods, such as Odin and Loki are definatley dark. Whilst others such as Thor and Njord are in my opinion, very approachable. It's a mixed bag. Regardless, the Nordic gods are definatley not "fluffy" by any stretch of the imagination. In your post, you mentioned feeling drawn more towards Anglo-Saxon tradition. This is very much my UPG but I feel the Anglo-Saxon deities (although the same gods) are a bit more laid back and not so "harsh" compared to their Norse versions. Maybe you could try exploring the Anglo-Saxon side of things and see how that turns out for you.

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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Geroth View Post
    In your post, you mentioned feeling drawn more towards Anglo-Saxon tradition. This is very much my UPG but I feel the Anglo-Saxon deities (although the same gods) are a bit more laid back and not so "harsh" compared to their Norse versions. Maybe you could try exploring the Anglo-Saxon side of things and see how that turns out for you.
    This has been my experience. There's no Ragnarok that we know of in Anglo-Saxon myth! I honor Thunor and Frige, and both of them are pretty open and friendly (with the occasional sense of an exasperated Frige because I suck at housework).
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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanze View Post
    I'm considering working with some Germanic gods. Mostly due to the fact that I have both Anglo-Saxon and German ancestry and I'm leaning towards more the Anglo-Saxon side of things. I've felt the call for quite a while but have put it off.

    The thing is however, I'm terrified of working with them. Unlike some other European pantheons such as the Irish or Romans, they seem to me to be very dark, intimidating and temperamental deities. As a result, they scare the crap out of me and it's holding me back from engaging with them.

    Has this been anybody else's experience with them? Can anybody offer any advice for my current situation?
    Congrats on possibly finding a pantheon to work with. I also have Northern European and Anglo Saxon ancestry (with a dip of French?), so I found myself drawn to them a few years ago in my practice. I personally work with Norse deities at the moment, specifically Frigg, and I have to say that I find her more warm and inviting than dark. Granted, if you had to make a list of nice to mean, she's the top of the nice list, but even then, being a nice deity doesn't mean that they tolerate all kinds of stupids and fails. She has a distaff and isn't afraid to use it :D

    Is the terror you feel more from not knowing specifically how to build a relationship with these deities? Or is it more not knowing the nuts and bolts of Norse mythology, or the Eddas? I think pin pointing what causes you this stress is the best way to move past it, or at least it was for me. Once I realized that Thor wasn't going to thunderbolt me down into Hel's realm, I felt okay taking a moment to pause and thank him during much needed thunderstorms.

    Sometimes (after some prep work of course) you do have to simply honor the gods. I now have an altar for Frigg where I can honor her and her handmaidens and it feels great to take a few moments every day (or other day) to simply talk to her and let her know that I respect her and want a relationship with her. Be respectful and research a deity that may work for you, don't honor one simply because every other Germanic pagan does. Good luck.

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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanze View Post
    I'm considering working with some Germanic gods. Mostly due to the fact that I have both Anglo-Saxon and German ancestry and I'm leaning towards more the Anglo-Saxon side of things. I've felt the call for quite a while but have put it off.

    The thing is however, I'm terrified of working with them. Unlike some other European pantheons such as the Irish or Romans, they seem to me to be very dark, intimidating and temperamental deities. As a result, they scare the crap out of me and it's holding me back from engaging with them.

    Has this been anybody else's experience with them? Can anybody offer any advice for my current situation?
    Some are more approachable then others. Some you will never have an interest in. Almost an group of gods has those that are on the dark side since life is like that. Wisdom and life are not always pretty. Thor is very approachable and a great place to start. You might want to look into Waincraft too.

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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Geroth View Post
    You are not alone, many people who wish to work with Norse deities often feel the same way, myself included. Some gods, such as Odin and Loki are definatley dark. Whilst others such as Thor and Njord are in my opinion, very approachable. It's a mixed bag. Regardless, the Nordic gods are definatley not "fluffy" by any stretch of the imagination. In your post, you mentioned feeling drawn more towards Anglo-Saxon tradition. This is very much my UPG but I feel the Anglo-Saxon deities (although the same gods) are a bit more laid back and not so "harsh" compared to their Norse versions. Maybe you could try exploring the Anglo-Saxon side of things and see how that turns out for you.
    I personally never got the impression Odin was hard to approach. He's just very stern and sagely. Certainly he seems grim from a distance (distance being used in a metaphorical sense here), but even his most "grim" aspects do not fill me with a sense of fear, but awe. He strikes me as stern and reprimanding, but also sagely and fatherly if not somewhat abrasive only at the first glance. I feel that any God is approachable, it's just a matter of developing an understanding of them. Though yes, in general they do seem more stern, rough, and forceful than others.

    Click it or something.It just seemed like it would be fun to toy around with.

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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Riothamus12 View Post
    I personally never got the impression Odin was hard to approach. He's just very stern and sagely. Certainly he seems grim from a distance (distance being used in a metaphorical sense here), but even his most "grim" aspects do not fill me with a sense of fear, but awe. He strikes me as stern and reprimanding, but also sagely and fatherly if not somewhat abrasive only at the first glance. I feel that any God is approachable, it's just a matter of developing an understanding of them. Though yes, in general they do seem more stern, rough, and forceful than others.
    Odin is definitely approachable, the question is more whether leaving is an option once you've got his attention.
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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by ALiteraryLady View Post
    Is the terror you feel more from not knowing specifically how to build a relationship with these deities? Or is it more not knowing the nuts and bolts of Norse mythology, or the Eddas? I think pin pointing what causes you this stress is the best way to move past it, or at least it was for me. Once I realized that Thor wasn't going to thunderbolt me down into Hel's realm, I felt okay taking a moment to pause and thank him during much needed thunderstorms.
    I have read the Eddas and that did scared me, I think that is where I primarily got the darkness from. But the terror I feel mostly comes from reading online forums where the personalities of the gods were discussed and also "gut feelings" I have about them.

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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    Odin is definitely approachable, the question is more whether leaving is an option once you've got his attention.
    That's been my experience as well. Though I also find him to be crafty, clever and have kind of a twisted way of teaching a person something he wants them to learn. But really........ would one want a deity that does not have at least the first two of those attributes?
    Really? So, hey, want to go fishing? I've got a telescope, and it's going to be a dark night, so we should see the fish really well.
    ...what, I'm not talking about fishing? That's stargazing? It's all doing-stuff, so it's the same thing, right?
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  10. #10
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    Re: Working with Germanic gods

    Quote Originally Posted by Zanze View Post
    I'm considering working with some Germanic gods. Mostly due to the fact that I have both Anglo-Saxon and German ancestry and I'm leaning towards more the Anglo-Saxon side of things. I've felt the call for quite a while but have put it off.

    The thing is however, I'm terrified of working with them. Unlike some other European pantheons such as the Irish or Romans, they seem to me to be very dark, intimidating and temperamental deities. As a result, they scare the crap out of me and it's holding me back from engaging with them.

    Has this been anybody else's experience with them? Can anybody offer any advice for my current situation?
    I have Scottish/Welsh ancestry so notice me surprise when a Norse God starts popping around (a la Loki) and feels so much like 'Home' that it baffled me. Eventually, I started to get a pull into Odin's direction and that was the moment I started to freak out. Nothing seemed to scare me more than catching Odin's attention. There's more awe and respect than fear today, though.

    Neither Loki nor Odin have been dark but they certainly do have their fair share of craftiness and deceptiveness so, it's kind of best to keep an eye out. Just in case...

    As for advice? The harsher side of me is saying that staying away from them, due to being terrified of them, isn't going to get you anywhere. If you really want to work with them, suck it up and do it. Answer the call you feel.

    If you haven't already: Get to know them. It also might be wise to look at the difference (and similarities) between the Anglo-Saxon gods and the Germanic gods.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jack View Post
    Odin is definitely approachable, the question is more whether leaving is an option once you've got his attention.
    Oh gods, I get that feeling every now and then. I tried resisting the pull I was feeling and that seemed swell and wonderful... until a friend of mine got asking me a few things about Paganism because they were interested in it due to being drawn to Odin and Hela.

    I thought it really wasn't right to tell them about a god I didn't particularly know well and decided to built an altar and oh, look, answering the freakin' pull I was getting from him at the same time.
    Last edited by Tay Redgrave; 12 Sep 2013 at 10:38 PM. Reason: mind? mine.

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