Tuesday, October 7, 2014

My Author's Preface - The View

Admittedly, this book took me a while to write and at times it was painful.  Then there were times that it scared the hell out of me; it's not my usual venue - I entered a brave, new world.  Finally, I settled on a format that I could live with. 

In the past I wrote many blog posts.  Without being specific, they were Asatru/Heathen centric but frankly, these posts can benefit anyone who reads them.  I took these posts, cleaned them up, and added verses of the Havamal as I saw fit.  (The Havamal is a 165 verse poem found in the Poetic Edda).  To this, I added questions directed at the reader.  But the Havamal verses used are not straight out of any Poetic Edda.  They are my personal and relaxed words and my thoughts of what Bellows and Hollander amply translated.  And, I tried to use situations and things that are meaningful in our 21st century.  This is why I experienced that fear.  

In no way or in any manner am I trying to upstage Bellows and Hollander; they have done an admirable job.  All that I have attempted to do was to make their words easier to understand - that's all.  By using simpler words, and with a bend to relevance in our 21st century, I believe that I have succeeded.  However, there are people who will think not, that I have damaged tradition.  I have a few things to say about their rigorist thought.  

We live in the 21st century, not the 8th, 9th, or 10th.  We need to interpret the past to serve us in the present.  What was relevant to our ancestors differs greatly from what we face today; I do not think that I need to elaborate.  However, what I have done does not negate the underlying intent expressed within the Havamal.  This intent is relevant now as it was in the 10th century.  But, we need modern situations to match this intent.  The harboring of a fundamentalist, rigorist viewpoint only thwarts what is needed in our 21st century.  Our ancestors, I truly believe, would not want us to regress but progress.  That said, my feeble and humble work offered in this book is, in my opinion, an attempt to honor our ancestor's desires.  I believe that, to our ancestors, living in the past not just ignores the present but condemns the future.  


Unity of a Forgotten Kind

The world and all it contains, both seen and unseen stands with mankind in a state of consubstantiation.  Our ancestors understood this as...