WEEKLY GROUP RITUAL

A new weekly ritual will be posted here each week, which we will use in our Saturday meetings. For more information on these Saturday meetings, see the Get Involved page.

Preparation:
It is recommended that you have two bowls: one with pure water, another empty. You will also need a glass with your offering to the Gods. Typical offerings are wine, milk, or water, but the offering can be specific to the deity you are addressing. It is also appropriate to have a candle and incense.

Wash your hands in the bowl of water to purify yourself before the gods.

The meeting will open with the reading of three Delphic Maxims followed by music.

Delphic Maxims 34 – 36:

34. ἀλλοτρίων ἀπέχου – keep yourself away from others’ things

35. ἄκουε πάντα – hear everything

36. εὔφημος ἴσθι – be religiously silent

Our gods who order the Cosmos
as you order Fate,
and from whom all Good comes,
we come before you now,
pure in body and spirit,
and with reverence and devotion.

We honor our ancestors also:
our own ancestors,
as well as the ancestors
and great men of our people.
We live through them
and they continue through us.

Today’s libation text is Wodan’s horse-healing spell (the Second Merseburg charm), an Old High German incantation from the 9th century CE that invokes the healing of the foal of Balder:

Phol ende wodan     fuorun zi holza.
du wart demo balderes folon     sin fuoz birenkit.
thu biguol en sinthgunt,     sunna era swister;
thu biguol en friia,     folla era suister;
thu biguol en wodan,     so he wola conda:
sose benrenki, sose bluotrenki,     sose lidirenki:
ben zi bena,     bluot si bluoda,
lid zi geliden,     sose gelimida sin!

Phol and Wodan rode to the woods,
where the foot of Balder’s foal was sprained.
So Sinthgunt, Sunna’s sister, conjured it;
and Frija, Volla’s sister, conjured it;
and Wodan conjured it, as well he could:
Like bone-sprain, so blood-sprain,
so joint-sprain:
Bone to bone, blood to blood,
joints to joints, so they may be mended.

As you give to us, so we give back to you. Hail!

Pour some of your offering into the empty bowl.

It is said that
‘verily at the first Chaos came to be,
but next wide-bosomed Earth.’

And that we are like to the Cosmos:
‘Of Ymir’s flesh
was earth created,
of his blood the sea,
of his bones the hills,
of his hair trees and plants,
of his skull the heaven;

And of his brows
the gentle powers
formed Midgard for the sons of men;
but of his brain
the heavy clouds are
all created.’

And it is said that
‘the world subsists through the goodness of divinity.’

Therefore, as the Cosmos
is ordered out of Chaos by divinity,
so we, as we partake of this drink,
shall likewise be brought to order by divinity.

The remainder of the drink is consumed.

Today’s reading is the invocation of the healing power of the Arundhatî plant from the Sanskrit book Atharvaveda (1.000 – 900 BCE).

For newcomers:
Each person who chooses to read will read from the asterisk to the next asterisk. One person will read at a time. I will begin the reading; the person who is above me in the voice channel will then continue the reading, and so on, until the reading is complete. If you do not wish to read, mute your microphone and this will be understood as a signal that you wish to be skipped.

*

1. You are the healer, making whole, the healer of the broken bone:
Make you this whole, Arundhatī!

*

2. Whatever bone of yours within your body has been wrenched or cracked,
May Dhātar (“the upholder”) set it properly and join together limb by limb.

*

3. With marrow be the marrow joined, your limb united with the limb.
Let what has fallen of your flesh, and the bone also grow again.

*

4. Let marrow close with marrow, let skin grow united with the skin.
Let blood and bone grow strong in you, flesh grow together with the flesh.

*

5. Join you together hair with hair, join you together skin with skin.
Let blood and bone grow strong in you. Unite the broken part, o plant.

*

6. Arise, advance, speed forth; the chariot has goodly fellies, naves, and wheels!
Stand up erect upon your feet.

*

7. If he be torn and shattered, having fallen into a pit, or struck by a cast stone,
Let him (Dhātar) join limb with limb, as the Ribhus (three divine artisans) did with the portions of the chariot (of the divine Ashvin twins).

*

This completes this week’s reading. We will pause for approximately half a minute for silent contemplation.

As we complete our sacred duty
of honoring our gods,
our ancestors, and the World
which is an image of divinity,
we will remember that
‘piety consists of holy thoughts’
and that we are to be
courageous, just, temperate, and wise
in every aspect of our lives.

The offering can be left in the bowl for some time. Later, it can be poured outside into the earth.

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