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Heyönn and Slóttublót

Midsummer Day is now over, and it falls on July 13 in our current calendar. The time of the Midsummer Day corresponds to the mid-winter night of winter, which falls on January 13 in our current calendar - this night our ancestors called Hókunótt (of Norse Hóku – “chop” / “peck” and nótt – “night”). Originally, the Midsummer Day fell 28 days after the summer solstice, just as there are 28 days between each major blót (sacrifice), similar to the woman's own cycle. This blót was called Súmarblót (summer sacrifice).


In other words, we are now in the late summer, and in the latter half of the summer. Our ancestors held an important sacrifice now, namely Slóttublót (harvesting sacrifice). Slóttublót and what our ancestors called Hundedagene (“the dog days”) fall in the month of Alfheimr (white / light world - home to the god Frøy, who in the myths personifies ancestral cult, blood, soil and fertility). It is not strange that Frøy carries the month in which the harvest accumulates.


The month is also called Heyönn, Ormamánaðr (“harvest month” and “worm month”), with the zodiac sign Ljún (Lion). The month is also called the Råtemåneden ("rotten month"), which in short means that most foods and organic things in nature disappear and rot quickly in late summer.


These days, our ancestors celebrated, having cut and hung up the grass (of Norwegian “å herse”) - because on the fields the grass was cut with scythe, and hung on stools to dry. The grass was used for winter fodder for cattle and livestock. The farmers still do this, but today modern equipment is used. After they had done this, they held Slóttublót. This marked the start of the harvest.



A straw goat, which we still use for Yule, was produced. It was made from last year's crop. This goat represents Thor (and his goats), who personify the forces of nature that affect the sun, weather, wind, rainfall, gravity, magnetism, earth, ergo: the conditions of the future crop. This straw goat was divided into 7 or 14 pieces and distributed at the ends of the field.

Traditional sword dancing was held, where one party represented winter, and one party summer. A symbolic idol of the god / natural force Frøy was killed / sacrificed [1] and spread throughout the field. The idol of Frøy was made of straw / materials from last year's crop. This symbolizes that the previous year's seed (power, fertility, supply dies, and the new is born). Just as the tradition was in choosing a new King / Chief and Queen - if the sitting ones were out-competed or found more worthy to lead the people - elected by the people themselves.


The blót / sacrifice was rich in food and drink, and was a feast for the winter supplies to be covered. It was a tribute to nature and her gifts. After the forced Christianisation, this high festival was reversed and dedicated to several saints by the Catholic Church. The reason for this was that the high festival fell at various times in August around the country, depending on the local climate and altitude - and depending on when the grass was ready and the harvest could start.


Heyönn (“high harvest”) itself was dedicated to St. Olav (Olav the saint), and was called Olsok. On this day, our pagan ancestors marked that the crops were ready to be harvested. The Christians totally subverted and inverted the day during the Christianisation and under the Catolic church.


August 1, they dedicated to the Jewish apostle Peter, and his captivity under the Romans in Jerusalem, where St. Peter is said to have been imprisoned by Herodes, Agrippa and later liberated by an angel. St. Peter was the first Jewish sect's missionary to the "European Gentiles." As is well known, the pagan Romans crucified this missionary on an upside-down cross. The day was by the Christians in Norway named "Peter's chains".


August 10, they dedicated St. Laurentius, a Catholic treasurer and one of seven deacons for the Inquisition stronghold in Rome. He collected taxes and fees, and was one of those who laid the foundation for the Catholic Church to have been the world's most wealthy institution for the last 1,500 years, and the world's largest property owner to this day, after what cannot be described as anything but a feudal robbery from the native peoples. The Roman pagan emperor Valerianus got Laurentius executed. The day was by the Christians in Norway named "Larsok".


August 15, they dedicated to Virgin Mary's "travel to heaven" and her "ascension" to it. This requires no further embedding. The day was by the Christians in Norway called "Mariamesse".


August 16, they dedicated to St. Rochus. He was a pilgrim and "healer" with his main “business” in Italy. He was expelled from Rome and lived in the forest when he was declared outlawed by the pagan Romans. The same pagan punishment we used in Norway towards criminals serious crimes such as serious theft, unintentional murder, etc. The background was that the criminal was banished from the tribe for one year - this, in order for the person to reflect on what he had done and return, after one year and one day, as an improved human being. According to Germanic, and also the pagan Roman law of the time, the same crime the second time meant the death penalty. St. Rocus died in prison. He received a 5 year sentence for espionage and conspiracy, disguised as a pilgrim. The day the Christians in Norway called "Rugsok". By this renaming, both the criminal spy and the pilgrim got their name for the day, while at the same time this day was used by the pagans to sow the winter rye (of Norwegian “rug”), hence the name.


August 24, they dedicated to the Apostle Bartolomeus. This day is a pagan high festival called Búfárdagr (Bufardag) - the day our ancestors went down from the mountains after the summer to prepare butchering, preservation and winter storage – with all the cattle. We will return to this in a later article.



[1] In general, we have an idea of ​​"grand" mere barbaric sacrifice of animals, people and children. This general view is, like so many things around our ancestors' pursuits, exaggerated and erroneous. A blót seems to have been something quite different. Rather a quiet moment, in gratitude to nature, where you give back in the cycle, symbolic or practical. This is not a physical human sacrifice - but a symbolic sacrifice of an idol / figure etc. A symbolic change - whether in season, nature or among people. In the saga literature there are references to "king sacrifices" (like King Domalde in the Ynglinge saga). We must remember that the oldest sagas are mythological in their form, and that Domalde himself can be regarded as a personification of "the crops", or a king who has played out his role and is symbolically replaced in a direct democracy. However, we must also be aware that other references also indicate that it was precisely Christians who recorded our oral traditions handed down in the Middle Ages. They did what they could to make our pre-Christian ancestors as barbaric and primitive as possible. The closest we come to speculations today about human sacrifices as a general practice are the many findings in bogs from the Bronze Age. They carry the mark of execution, and ritual actions mainly after death occurred. The most logical explanation for these findings may, on a general basis, appear to be rituals associated with the death penalty. It is also logical that the bog bodies are placed in water / wetlands due to this element's symbolism related to death, ancestry and the realm between. That the execution was dedicated to a god or godess of death is rather natural to imagine. To the extent that it is possible to ascertain ritual actions related to the executions, the archeology and research we have today shows that these acts appear to have been performed after the execution was completed. What we are left with is academic speculation.

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