"Open the door, the door that has no keys, whereby in Dreams we
come to Thee..."
Close your eyes and take deep breaths. When you are ready, you will be able to see yourself in a garden which is also the Outer Courtyard of the Inner Temple that will be your gateway to your Journeys with the Elder Futhark, the ancient Norse alphabet of Magick and Inner and Outer Tranformations. In front of you there is a garden that keeps the freshness of the best things in Nature, and in the West you can see that a river crosses the garden. You smile. Our Soul Ancestors were great sailors, so somehow you know this river at some point will reach the sea. At the same time, the garden has also received the labours of loving hands, human and Divine, and your eyes embrace the fire altar for making offerings to the Divine Ones of Norse Religion, who will be known to you as Best Friends and Companions as the Journey unfolds. You see statues carved in stone and one day, very soon, you will know them all by name and symbolism.
It is always pleasant and sunny in this garden, no matter what the weather is outside it. This is because we are in a very special place, not only a sacred temple, but our own corner of the virtual reality that is the World Wide Web. The air is fresh and clean, the temperature comfortable, and there is a hint of herbs and pine on the breeze, as well as a suggestion of the tang of the sea. So please relax and be at ease.
The first step upon entering a temple is to cleanse yourself. This is a common practice in many religions the world over. It is also standard practice before contacting the Inner Worlds to show a fresh face to the Inner Guardians and Companions. So pause for a moment to refresh and purify yourself at the sacred river that flows across the sacred courtyard. You kneel down to bathe your hands and face.
Next is the fire altar. Here you may make an offering to Guardians of the place, to a special deity or deities, if you choose. In ancient times it was common to bring animals to the temple for sacrifice. Generally they came from one's own flocks, usually sheep or goats; perhaps an ox or cow for a special occasion; and very, very rarely a bird, usually a dove or pigeon. Offerings of many animals were made only on major holy days and then there would be a huge feast afterwards for all the celebrants. If you brought more than one animal, the extra will join the temple flocks. And you will get to eat a part of whatever you have brought after its essence has fed the Divine Ones.
But it is not necessary to bring an animal, nor was it in the past. This is a magickal place, so you can create magickally your offering by imagining it right now. You can make offerings under the ancient form of grain, flour, or bread (beer is acceptable, too); of fruits, juices, or wine; other foodstuffs, such as nuts (especially almonds, pine nuts, and pistachios) and seeds (sesame and poppy, particularly), cheese (feta, for example), yogurt, honey, herbs, or incense. Or you can go all modern and offer flowers, scented candles, etc.
If you haven't brought anything... well, there is one thing you surely brought along: yourself! Stop for a moment before the fire and hold up your hands to it. Careful, not too close, just enough to see the flames flickering beyond your fingers. The fire is merely a spark from the great flame of the divine which enspirits and enlivens the universe. And within you, too, burns a spark of that divine fire. Pausing here for a moment, the two fires are become one.
When you are ready, open your eyes and get back to your everyday reality, in the certainty that your Magickal Courtyard to the Inner Temple will be there, waiting for you anywhere and anytime you feel like exploring the roads to the Soul. And beyond.
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