by Alex King
To state the obvious, a crossroads is a meeting point for travelers. Each who passes through is on a journey of some sort. Some journeys are simple, those traveling from one place to another. Others are sad, wanderers lost, trying to find their path. Some of these travelers are on a good path and utilize the crossroads as a resting point. The last are malicious, nefarious in every intent, their path purposefully darkened.
At the outset of my journey, I was one of the last sort. For personal reasons, I decided to spend some time at one particular crossroads. Being unable to continue for a full day, I determined to keep a vigil through the night. This night will forever hold a monumental place in my mind. There were many tests, trials and lessons in store. Deception, fear and humility are the three I’ll discuss here.
We are shielded by the benevolent forces we call upon. Some say God, others look to the Great Spirits, and still others confer with their own superego. What truly matters is that we keep our eyes and ears open, our minds focused on the light. In this heightened level of awareness, Truth is common sense. Asatruar call spiritual deception the mists of Nivlheim. Like a mist, it veils the mind, clouds the eyes and clogs the ears.
Continuing this apt analogy, mists bring with them shadows, from which are wrought the elements of fear. To fear the dark is to fear the unknown. It is the unknown that terrifies humanity. What we find common, we find comfortable, and when comfort is lost, fear is born. Fear is multifaceted, each aspect representing another unknown. Conversely, knowledge brings confidence, an aspect of love, dispelling fear.
As I overcame these and other challenges throughout the night, my greatest challenge came to light: pride. I recognized and quelled the blatant forms of it, but I couldn’t find the root to dig it out. Of all the things Lone Heron taught me, the greatest lesson she has left me with is that of humility. I am much better equipped, now, to recognize some of the more subtle aspects of pride.
I’ve come a long way and I have a long way yet to go, but I thank the gods for what healing I have received. Finally, I’m on the mend.
77° and Clear