Ramblings on Ecstatic States

So… it occurs to me that I can get into trance states pretty easy. And I think they are a mild form of ecstasy.

This morning, I was rereading “American Gods” (Neil Gaiman) and I got to the part about the vigil.  After thinking loudly about some questions about Goddess participation & agency in this novel (because let’s face it, there’s lots of sexy or cute goddesses & dead people in this book and I’m not convinced this book passes the Bechdel test), I ended up on a series of… revelations, I guess, about some powerful Norse goddesses. I’m not sure if I want to talk about it, and am just sitting with that.

But, I was certainly riding some kind of energy there, and if it’s not called ecstasy then I don’t know what it is.

I guess the sensible thing to do would be to read some Diana Paxson and Jenny Blain.

It even occurred to me today, you know, could I visit the Nine Realms, and I Saw outlines of Muspelheim in the top page borders of an illuminated manuscript. (Bookbinding, calligraphy, petroglyphs, and Celtic knotwork being my methods of choice lately.)

So the Norse Pantheon has stepped up into some kind of Muse relationship with me as Artist. And I can look to sculptors and painters of the past who were also inspired by myth, and how that relationship is ongoing today with graphic designers and tattoo artists on Instagram.

There is a spirit in my life who guides me in navigating sex stuff. This week, he* helped me understand that, for me, spiritual and sexual ecstasy are on opposite sides of a spectrum and that it’s unhealthy to try to do both in a limited time frame.

That seems like a sensible boundary for me to have. I know some people can combine the two, but I am not sure I am wired that way.

*his default mode is male but he can switch to female when he wants to

I can listen to some Norse folk metal or epic movie music and feel moved to create. I don’t find that I can just sit with the inspired energy–it’s best to do something with it.

I think I could even be capable of Othinn’s frenzy when it comes to performing spoken word but I haven’t experimented yet because… well, it’s been a slow year so far, work-wise, so I haven’t had time. But I’d like to take the time at some point.

I’ve been very slowly drawing and colouring a quilt of runes with Frigga’s face in the middle. It’s just pencil and pencil crayon but it’s quite satisfying to think Frigga has her own runic mysteries through craftsmanship and art. (So far I’ve only coloured Hagalaz, Inguz, Kenaz, Jera, and Teiwaz which speaks to what runes I feel comfortable with, and which ones I don’t!)

I’ve also made at least four or more artist’s books out of rune-staves and Jormungandr serpent/dragon designs during my bookbinding class. That was rad. My classmates knew me for a black-and-white style, since I was using a lot of India ink for the rune-staves. I finished the class with a LeGuin-inspired full colour dragon book that I gifted to a classmate. I chose not to take pictures of the book, since it was explicitly a private gift for a mystery person. Totally worth it though. Those dragons were epic.

Anyway, this whole post is to say that Norse myth is really inspiring me these days and it’s AWESOME to explore it. I feel like I have a way healthier relationship to the spirits now that I am not oathbound to them in sickness. Woot!

Art rocks!

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