Saturday, February 7, 2009

Goddess Freya

Goddess Freya Image
Freya, queen of Vanaheim, expresses deep feminine beauty and strength. She is a very powerful Goddess, known as a Goddess of love, beauty, fertility, magic, war, and death. Her palace is called Folkvang, and she chooses the first of the fallen warriors to join her in preparation for Ragnarok. As a Vane, she has taught her own unique and powerful magic to the Aesir. Her personal chariot is drawn by a team of cats.

Freya is sister of Frey, daughter of Njord and Nerthus. Freya is not so much a name as a title, and means Lady. She is called Vanadis, and is a dis of the Vanir. She may be identical with the goddess Nerthus, in the way Frey might be identical with Njord. Her realm is Folkvang, her hall Sessrymnir. She is goddess of seidh, and taught that art to Odin (while learning galdr from him). She is also a goddess of war and is called Valfreya, Lady of the Slain. This may refer to the fact that she recieves half those warriors slain in battle (getting first choice, even before Odin). This may also mean she is head of the Valkyries, Odin's warrior women. She is goddess of the Earth, and the crops. She is a goddess of fertility, and sex, and passion. Part of her worship in pagan times involved writing erotic poetry dedicated to her. It was said to so inflame the passions that even in pagan times it was illegal for a man to read Freya's poetry to an unmarried woman. This poetry was the reason that Christians were so thorough in eradicating any of Freya's lore. She is in many ways a female form of Odin (though not a female side of Odin). She possesses a falcon's plumage cloak, which turns its wearer into a falcon. She is married to Odin under the name of Odhr (though "married" might have been a Christian term, used because a scribe was uncomfortable with the idea of a consort, which seems to more accurately describe her relationship to Odin). But Odhr's wandering nature sometimes stirs him to leave her, and wander the worlds. When he does this, she seeks ever after him, in her chariot drawn by cats, weeping tears that become gold. For this reason gold is sacred to her. It seems likely that she was a birch goddess. She is one of the two goddesses the giants are always trying to abduct. She has a magic necklace, which is called Brisingamen, which may be identical, symbolically, with the whole earth. The "Valentine's heart" was originally a symbol of Freya, and actually represents sex more than romantic love (it is a representation of the vulva). The ladybug (freyabug) is also a symbol of her.

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