Working With The Gods: Hela

In the Norse pantheon, Hel/Hela is the goddess of death, the deity that rules in the underworld and all its denizens. In previous posts I have written about her already. Now, I will not delve much into the subject of who she is and her purpose as a goddess, nor will I talk about her gifts. In this post, I will write about her in a different manner, how to work with her in a spiritual way. To those who already know her, it will be easier to interpret.

The majority of the Norse gods (both genders) are associated with light, but Hela on the other hand, is one of the few Norse deities which represents exactly the opposite. She is associated with darkness, the kind of darkness which absorbs the light, a very powerful negative energy. This is probably one of the reasons people associate her with evil and an horrific afterlife spent in darkness. The christianization of Europe adopted her name to label the terrible afterlife awaiting those who sin, the place where the devil reigns and tortures souls (Hell). This is an awful mistake, Hela has nothing to do with christian beliefs, and she may be associated with darkness, but that doesn’t mean that darkness itself is naturally linked to evil. She seldom comes in the lore, and even the most important lore we have about the gods, such as the written works of Snorri Sturluson, had already a christian influence which is perfectly natural at that time, for the christian faith was gaining much ground and none could speak or write about subjects which “defiled” the christian faith. Most of what we really know about the goddess Hela, comes from the spirit-workers who have the honour to work with her. Unfortunatelly, such people are few, but we still can learn a lot about the gods in this manner. We must let go all the mysticism and lies that were created around many pagan gods.

Working with Hela:
When meeting with Hela (if you have such honour, because she really only chooses a handful of spirit-workers once in a life time), she would certainly like to be offered something to drink, be that alcoholic or not, preferably home-brewed. She usually wears long and simple clothing, normally black or grey or both, you will recognize her easily.Also, the her best feature which you will recognize her immediately as soon as you see it, is the fact that she usually wears rings. One ring on every finger of her left hand.
There are some people, Spirit-workers or not, that paint half of their faces resembling a skull, or actually use a mask like that to honour her. Hela will often work with female spirit-workers, but occasionally it is possible for her to also call for a male spirit-worker, but that seldom happens.
Hela walks very slowly and moves quietly. She only speaks to a person at the time, there are no group gatherings around her. Be very quiet, don’t interrupt her, listen intently to what she has to say. Her vast knowledge is something that she will not share with most, and if she chooses to share it with you, be certain that you are being given the most honourable audience of all.

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