Roads to Vanaheim: Exploring the Vanir & Vanatru

A blog about the Vanir gods and other Vanic entities, gnosis and doxa, and thoughts on building a Vanic pagan practice.

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Nornoriel Lokason

Nornoriel Lokason

Nornoriel Lokason is one of the forefathers of the Vanatru movement, writing and doing PR from 2007-2010 under the name Svartesol. He is the author of Visions of Vanaheim, a guide to the Vanir deities, the tribes and culture of Vanaheim, and Vanic traditions and practise. He also is the author of Walking Between Worlds, a "survival guide" for the newly god-touched, and Peace and Good Seasons, a devotional book for Frey. Nono's forthcoming projects include Voices of Vanaheim, a book of Vanic myths old and new, to be released in November 2014, Vigils of Vanaheim, a book of Vanic ritual with a tentative release date of May 2015, and a devotional anthology for Njord with a tentative release date of July 2015. He has a blog at Patheos entitled Ride the Spiral, and is a contributing author to the Patheos blog Staff of Asclepius. If Nono wasn't busy enough with writing, he also has an Etsy shop, Nornoriel's House of Elf Swag, selling handmade jewelry, Reiki, divination, and astrological services, as well as crystals. He lives in Portland, Oregon with a demon companion and a tuxedo cat; the household of three will be moving to New England in December 2014. When not writing or making art, he enjoys reading, thrifting, listening to industrial and metal, and communing with nature.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Comet_Halley_and_the_Milky_Way.jpg(an excerpt from my book, Visions of Vanaheim)

Some time after Star Mother birthed the Serpent Twins, and the Serpent Twins made the world, the cycles of life and death, living and dying, began upon that world. And even though Star Mother knew it was necessary, and that life feeds on life, she still shed tears, feeling the pain of every living thing in its struggles, and in its dying process. Those tears were the only record kept of those lives and those pain, for eons. Eventually, she shed so many tears that she was almost drowning in them.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_milky-way-and-haystack-rock.jpgI’ve felt a lot closer to Star Mother since moving to Oregon in 2013.  I've really felt closer to the Vanir in general since moving out here, but right now I will talk about connecting with Star Mother.

When I first moved to Portland I took a lot of walks at night to calm down (as my move had been under less than ideal circumstances and I had a lot to deal with in a very short amount of time, I was pretty stressed) and it became a meditative exercise.  When I moved to a semi-rural area in January of this year, there was a lot less light pollution and I could see the stars more clearly in the sky (though enough light pollution that I couldn’t see beyond a few handfuls); this past Imbolc, I went for a ride out to a more remote location, and for the first time in my life I saw the Milky Way, and the sky dotted with what seemed like millions of stars.  It was a sight that moved me to tears, and I couldn’t speak except to say, in Eshnesk (the language of the Eshnahai, or Vanic elves) Alekteya, Naiandu Adami.  (lit. “Blessings, Star Mother.”)  There was joy, but also what I can only describe as holy terror.  It was so beautiful, the sky seemed endless, and I felt very, very small.  I could feel the presence of Something much bigger than myself, and in her embrace, I felt like a child again.  As powerless as I felt, so tiny - a tiny pale dot on a tiny blue dot in the vastness of space - I felt held, at the same time.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_771px-Life_and_Death_Intermingled.jpg(an excerpt from my book, Visions of Vanaheim)

Star Mother is, in personal gnosis corroborated by several spirit-workers (as well as directly from Vanic elves), the progenitor of the Vanir and Creatrix of the Multiverse, and (with the Serpent Twins) the closest thing the Vanir have to a god that they will revere, in the sense of ancestor worship.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Mariah
    Mariah says #
    Beautiful- it's rather similar to the Feri tradition's creation myth-http://www.feritradition.org/grimoire/deities/star_goddess.ht
  • Nornoriel Lokason
    Nornoriel Lokason says #
    Yes, yes it is. There are some notable differences in the Eshnahai cosmology v. the Feri cosmology, from there on, but that is so

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b2ap3_thumbnail_800px-Road-to-chester-swamp.png...After my post last week wherein I talked about my deep love of the Pacific Northwest and feeling like I've come home here and intending to spend the rest of my life here... life threw me a curveball.

For reasons I won't get into here, I am having to move back to New England, and am looking at doing so before the end of 2014 (not immediately, but in the not too distant future).  While this is not what I wanted, it also could be a lot worse, and I accept what is - there are also some serious pros to the situation, including being able to bring my cat with me, getting a chance to focus on my writing and art career, and I have a bigger support network on the east coast than I do out here.

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  • Jamie
    Jamie says #
    Nornoriel, Welcome soon to New England! This place is in your blood and in your soul, like many of us. May the Gods and spirits s
  • Nornoriel Lokason
    Nornoriel Lokason says #
    Hi Jamie! Thank you for the welcome as well as the blessing and well wishes, I appreciate it. I've missed New England a lot. In

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b2ap3_thumbnail_800px-Leaves_in_Oregon.jpgThis is my second fall in Oregon, and only the second "real" fall I've had in eight years.  Last year, after I first moved here, the sight of the leaves changing color and falling to the ground made me cry.  I knew I'd missed the big dramatic seasonal changes of New England, but didn't realize how much. Not experiencing "real" seasonal changes during my almost-seven years in SoCal (beyond rainy and really hot) really messed with my head, and contributed to my general sense of feeling out of place there.  In a way, my life reflected that - I was stuck, and like much of the flora that is naturally suited for New England or the Pacific Northwest but not SoCal, I wasn't thriving there.  I was perpetually dry, burned to a crisp.

When I moved here, it wasn't just that the beauty of fall foliage nourished my soul.  I really like rain. (Which is good, because we have an abundance of that up here.)  But even above and beyond that... it was like an internal clock that had stopped ticking, started ticking again.

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  • Anne Newkirk Niven
    Anne Newkirk Niven says #
    Welcome "home." (Even though you never lived here before. In this life, anyway.) I lived in an amazing place in Northern Californi
  • Nornoriel Lokason
    Nornoriel Lokason says #
    Thank you! Western Oregon has amazing energy, especially the coast. Words do not even properly do justice to how I feel about th

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b2ap3_thumbnail_800px-Birch_bog20060915_083.jpgI have known, over the years, some folks who identify as Vanatru where the only real distinction between them and Asatruar (or other cultural-specific branches of heathenry) is that they focus on the Vanir gods, and usually the most well-known - Frey, Freya, Njord, maybe Nerthus... but their practice otherwise looks like standard heathenry, doing blót ritual.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with this.  This is actually how I got my start in Vanatru, back in 2004, and this was the way I did things for a number of years... and I still blót, on occasion.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_800px-Crescent_Meadow.jpgAs mentioned in my post Beyond The Powers: The World of Vanaheim, the realm of the Vanir is tribally structured - this has been corroborated by the doxa of multiple individuals from 2007 onward.  In no particular order, here is a brief overview of each Vanic tribe and the service they perform:

Serpent
The Serpent tribe is a small “tribe of introverts” and they live in a series of underground caves in the upper northwestern territory of Vanaheim, in a mixed deciduous and evergreen forest. They specialize in routine “maintenance” energy work as well as catastrophic, catalytic healing. They also serve as catalysts of wyrd, “seething” and creating subtle shifts that “grease the wheels” of change and create “sheddings” that need to happen.

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