Ancestors’ Blót – 11th Of November

Normally, the ancestors day is held at the 1st day of November in the case of the celtic old pagan beliefs, after Samhain at the 31st of October, or in the midle of October with the Dísablót and the Alfablót, which are specific celebrations for the ancestors in the old traditional paganism of the northern lands of Europe.

But in the northern neo-pagan beliefs and germanic reconstructionism there is the existence of the Ancestors blót at the 11th of November, which consists in a celebration, or a blót, to the ancestors, as the name indicates. This celebration is different from the old celebrations to the ancestors, when these feasts were just a family gathering, at the farmsteads, honoring the dead, offering food and drink to the gods and the landspirits, feasts that would also take place at the sacred mounds of the family, and only family members could be around, no other person was welcomed. The celebration of the 11th of November is also a gathering, but in these times of change, all are welcomed to join the feasts and remembering the ancestors of each family, in fact, the main objective, is to remember the ancestors as a whole group of people who used to live in this world, and take care of the land. Today this celebration is turned to nature and to the landspirits living in it, and how we need to protect our surroundings as our ancestors did, and still do. Unfortunately we are living in a time, were we are ruining the planetconstantly, but on the other hand, we also live in a time, were communication with other nations, is easier, and it is also easier to alert people of what is happaning to the world because of our deeds, trying to change things and make this world a better place to live again.

Also in America, the 11th of November is the Veterans’ Day, remembering those who fought and died for the country, so the Heathen communities and the neo-pagan groups linked to the northern pagan traditions in America, celebrate this day as the Feast of the Einherjar. The Einherjar are the warriors of Odin, the best and bravest of all the warriors that go to Valhalla, the most skillful and the protectors of the innocent, so at this day, it is a good combination to remember those who gave their lifes, for noble causes, i am not talking about wars with other countries, nor political interests, not even talking about specific soldiers of any country, i’m talking about those who fought and died to protect the innocent, each day, those of our ancestors and all the others who were there as a beacon of light and protection, watching for the people who aren’t strong enough to protect themselves, for exemple.. a policeman, a fireman, doctors etc. all those who gave their attention and care, and helped the ones in need. This is also what this day is about, remembering the great deeds of others, and try to take similar paths, to become better persons.

One response to “Ancestors’ Blót – 11th Of November

  1. Excellent post! (I have been slowly working through your essays) I especially like the thought you express in the line “we need to protect our surroundings as our ancestors did”. They did, in fact, do just that. They protected their land, their families and their traditions with hard work, deep spiritual practice, violence when required, and the breath and fire of magic and story. Modern life (and Christianity) has severed us from most of those traditions, and northern European pagans are in a unique place to reclaim those traditions. The energy they lived by is in us, in our DNA, we have only to connect to the natural rhythms they lived by and we can find both our way back, and our way forward. Honoring the ancestors is a powerful means of reaching for that tie that binds us to the past and future.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s