Seiðr Index

Herbal and Healing Knowledge of the Skjold Nygtlingja

Here you find Herbal and healing methods and recipes out time ...long forgoten. All recipes or methods posted here are only for information. If you try them it's at your own risk. You are not allowed to use them for commercial purposes. Like in books you write, videos or sale of ready made ointments or teas etc. The sole rights are with me for all remedies or methods that start with the word Skjold.

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Er þat ok margra heimskra manna náttúra, at þeir trúa því einu, er þeir sjá sínum augum eða heyra sínum eyrum, er þeim þykkir fjarlægt sinni náttúru, svá sem orðit hefir um vitra manna ráðagerðir eða mikit afl eða frábæran léttleika fyrirma nna, svá ok eigi síðr um konstir eða huklaraskap ok mikla fjölkynngi, þá þeir seiddu at sumum mönnum ævinliga ógæfu eða aldrtila, en sumum veraldar virðing, fjár ok metnaðar. Þeir æstu stundum höfuðskepnur, en stundum kyrrðu, svá sem var Óðinn eða aðrir þeir, er af honum námu galdrlistir eða lækningar.

There are plenty of people so foolish that they believe nothing but what they have seen with their own eyes or heard with their own ears - never anything unfamiliar to them, such as the councils of the wise, or the strength and amazing skills of the great heroes, or the way in which seiður [pronounced sayther] or skills of the mind, [huklaraskap] and powerful sorcery [fjolkyngi] may seiður death or a lifetime of misery for some, or bestow worldly honours, riches and rank on others. These [men] would sometimes stir up the elements, and sometimes calm them down, just like Othinn and all those who learnt from him these skills, of galður and healing.

Ref: Göngu-Hrólfs Saga Prologue

The oldest extant mentions of seiðr are two Skaldic poems allegedly composed in the tenth century: The Lausavisa of Vitgeir Seiðmaðr (Ed. Powell and Vigfusson 1883: Vol. I. 364) and Sigurðardrápa by Kormakr Ogmundarson (ibid. Vol. II: 33). While the first account refers to the seiðr practice of the Norwegian prince Rögnvaldr réttilbeini, the second one refers to Óðinn´s seduction of Rindr by ways of seiðr. The tale, found most notably in Saxo Grammaticus (Gesta Danorum, 3.4.1) already sets the practice of seiðr in mythological context.  Another misconception is that working magic somehow was an integral part to becoming a heathen. I have two lines of thought processes on this. The one tells me that not every heathen past or presents accepts the world of magic, just as many heathens today deny magic. The second is that the realms of magic and healing belonged to specialised professionals who served a community, certainly not the plethora of bookstore trained cyberspace individuals as we currently have out there today. The appeal and interest in the Northern European magical practice known as seiðr today seems to be directed mainly at the eclectic approach with very poorly researched books and articles purporting to be seiðr when in fact it is nothing more than another adapted version of the very modern reconstructions known as core shamanism with a Norse veneer.

The necessary first step in rediscovering the nature of heathen thought in Scandinavia is to discover how much has been caught up and preserved in the literature we possess, and to assess carefully the extent of the wealth at our disposal before we trace out its origins. HRE Davidson Road to Hel

Seiδr or at least the practice of magical arts was restricted to very specialized professionals whose skill were prized and respected within their communities (Jochens, Old Norse Magic and Gender, 307; Ellis-Davidson,37) These special children were female and chosen from childhood to do this work by the current volva and her specialized training covered a vast and myriad discipline of medicinal and healing arts for treating both humans and livestock. In my view, these arts were considered magical because of the nature of their secrecy, lasted many years in the acquisition of knowledge and practical experience but did not involve solely oracular arts via an improvised high chair? It took a long time to learn all these skills which in my opinion invalidates totally modern notions of seiðr craft via spæ clubs put together for such purposes of *theatre entertainment to impress a gullible public. Oracular arts as far as I can see were a very small part of it. Dag Strömbäck noted the similarities between Saami religion and the practice of seiðr and a significant portion of the accounts of seiðr in the Norse literature recount that the art is either learned from or practiced by "Finnish wizards," which in Old Norse meant Lappish (Saami) shaman. So the next time someone presents you with a "High Chair" oracular fake it till you make it showboating entertainment telling you that only females or homosexuals can perform seiðr, I would certainly like to see their evidence and whether they know the language of the elders or indeed the recitations of the so called vardlokkur  in its original syntax? There are by far way too many profile neurotic sons and daughters of Oðinn roleplaying  some sort of eclectic voodoo based trance possession seiδkonas out there for my liking doing this art a gross discredit! When in fact historical seiðr is recorded to be:

1) Foretelling the future (divination) usually with a community impact
2) Bestowing good fortune (blessing)
3) Bestowing bad fortune (hexing)
4) Manipulating the weather
5) Attracting game animals or fish
In Landramabok (194) þuriðr sundafyllir (sound filler) employs seidr to stock a fjord with fish. Seidr workers can also deprive an area of
its resources.
6) Healing the sick (this one is my favourite area)
7) Causing mild harm to people, animals or property
8) Communicating or mediating with the dead
9) Communicating or mediating with unseen worlds
10) Communicating or mediating with the gods?
11) War magic e.g. manipulating the minds of your enemies
12) Seidr Staffs....there are different types & possibly also
13) Sexual magic.....this area is definitely little understood or discussed

Modern hybrids of oracular (hrafnar styled) bootstrap "platform/high chair" entertainment passed off loosely as sidur/spae. I suspect also the term ergi is misunderstood in its original context and a linguist I was researching this subject matter with suggests Ergi in its truer and more accurate linguistic historical context means celibate (not to partake of sex) and it has nothing to do with being gay at all or unmanly. Quite possibly this is a Christian bias filtering through or perhaps the Boot-stap California Vodoun Seidr cults fraternity are attempting to hog this art for females or homosexuals only? The seiδrhjallr <a raise platform for working seiδr magic with one or even two persons> and the hasǽti <high seat place of honour> are two entirely different entities and certainly not synonymous. The hasǽti in this case was simply a place of honour afforded to the seiδkona þorbjǫg as was the custom back then during a time of crisis for the farmstead was experiencing a prolong famine at that time. This was not a gothic experience but normal custom and practise for the head of the farmstead to invite and offer a place of honour to the vǫlva in the hope of gaining her favour to change their fortunes as well as obtaining advice via her divination into the course of events to unfold. The reputation of these holy women were so feared back then that people were afraid even of her gaze upon them.

As a guide if someone suggests that you paint runes and Sami like magic symbols on a bohran drum and afterwards lead you into a meditational path working, I would strongly suggest that this is not historical seiðr. Likewise quick solutions to life's problems via instant magic cook book recipes or online pseudo seiðr poorly reconstructed practices based on the vernacular of modern English. There remains no validity or reliability in any of the New Age fabricated philosophies let alone authenticity of historical based praxis despite the fact that so much literature and secondary sources exists perhaps still not yet translated from Icelandic on the Old Norse Religion. Most moderns who choose to call themselves *seiðr workers have not steeped themselves into the culture, mind-set, language or true knowledge of the elder ways but instead choose only a veneer of heathenry mixing at will non related traditions from other cultures shouting out loud from their fragile soapboxes, "It works for me!" Until this intellectual laziness New Age trend changes, very little progress will be made and reclaiming our historical praxis will be left to the very few dedicated researches and historical Reconstructionist. For every one of us who is working on reclaiming this praxis based on the historical, there are at least 30 boot-strapers who are tainting it with their sci-fi / personal New Age fantasy / role-playing..