Monday, November 17, 2008

Asatru Kindred Activities

Asatru Kindred Activities Cover It is vital for the healthy growth and Development of the Kindred to have regular gatherings. The more frequent the gatherings, the better. I would encourage those who can to meet once a week. If that is not possible, try to get the Kindred together as often as possible. The Arizona Kindred meets every Wodensday. Now I realize that we have members in several states, and even within the state, some of us are separated by hundreds of miles. Some of us though only live a few miles from each other, so we meet once a week. We also have the seasonal Blots as well as other important gatherings throughout the year. We expect our members to attend all the gatherings that they can, with at least one a year being mandatory.

We have always expected our members to be self reliant, and one way to promote this is to have regular camp outs. In the Winter we camp in the desert, and in the Summer months we camp in the mountains. We encourage our members to procure suitable camping equipment, and to learn campcraft. Of course, for those new to camping in the great outdoors, we always have enough gear to share. If at all possible, schedule several camping trips a year. The Arizona Kindred meets this way about six times per year.

At our camp outs, we follow a usual routine. Those who can, arrive Friday afternoon to secure a campsite and to generally set up the camp. We usually have an informal meal that evening and just kick back and enjoy each others' company around the fire.

On Saturday morning we usually have some type of group activity. This could be going for a hike, a trip down to the swimming hole, or perhaps a firewood scrounging expedition. Sometimes we will have a seminar and discuss an important topic. By mid afternoon, we prepare for the Blot. Following the Blot, we have a formal Feast. This is usually a pot luck dinner, with everyone bringing Something to share with the Kindred. The Kindred usually supplies the meat for the cookout, and has a campstove available for those who need to cook their offering to the Feast. In the evening at dusk, we hold the Sumbel. We encourage our members to brew their own mead and bring it to share at the Sumbel. Following the Sumbel, we usually stay around the campfire and just enjoy each others' company.

On Sunnasday morning, as Gothi, I cook breakfast for the Kindred. This usually consists of hearty Spam sandwiches and berserker coffee. I have been known to cook breakfast for 30 people or more.

After breakfast, the whole Kindred should be engaged in cleaning the grounds, and as a last gesture, we make an offering to the Land Spirits. This sequence of events works well for the Kindred, and people learn to work with the schedule. Again, consistency is the key to successful outings.

At our weekly gatherings, being limited to a couple of hours at a time, we usually spend the first half hour or so just talking about our week, and sharing any news or ideas with the Kindred. Then we have an ongoing project that we work on. We have for the past year been studying the Runes. At first we concentrated on the basics, learning how to pronounce them, write them, know them, and later we carved them. We each made our own Gandr. Then as our knowledge progressed, we made our own Runes and started to cast them. At the same time, we read and studied the Rune Poems of the Eddas. Always working together as a group to learn all that we possibly can about the Runes. This work continues today. We also have studied the Havamal, and continue to do so. We are now comparing various Translations of the old Lays to learn even more. Lately we have started to study Old Norse for liturgical reasons and for everyday conversation. This is a work in progress.

Future plans are for brewing classes, wood carving, organic gardening, home disaster preparedness, and what ever else we decide to learn and to share with each other. Although all of this takes time, we look at this as all in a life's work. We will continue to meet and study as long as we draw breath.

This should give you some idea of Kindred activities. Remember the importance of meeting often, and having interesting activities for the Kindred to share.

Free eBooks (Can Be Downloaded):

Jarl Fossum - Seth In The Magical Texts
Anthony Arndt - Asatru The Northern Way
Miac - Asatru And Odinism
Reeves Hall - Asatru In Brief