for in a minute there are many days.
O by this court I shall be much in years
Ere I again behold my Romeo.
Romeo and Juliet
- William Shakespeare
This ritual / celebration is all about relationships, love, marriage, and the bonds that people have with their friends, family, and the Gods and Goddesses. The falling in love, courting and marriage of Freyr and Gerd is the perfect backdrop for this event. Some take this union as the coupling of the sky and the earth. I see it simply as love at first sight, which is a beautiful thing.
In the Eddas it says that Freyr was sitting in the high seat, at Hlidskjalf, looking out over the worlds, when he saw a very beautiful maiden in Jotunheim. Freyr's heart is so taken that he sends Skirnir to bring her to Asgard to make her his wife. Freyr tells Skirnir, " Young Skirnir no words can say how heavy my heart is all day long, the sun gives light, but dark is my desire." Freyr describes his love, Gerd, this way, " In Gymir's court I saw going by the one I love, so white were her shining arms they lit the sky and sea. " He then gives Skirnir his famous sword that, " will fight by itself ", and his horse, and asks him to bargain for the fair maidens hand. After a harrowing ride to Jotunheim Skirnir bargains / threatens her into submission, and finally she agrees to meet Freyr in nine nights.
When Freyr hears of this instead of being thrilled he is tormented by the fact that he has to wait nine long nights to see his lovely bride. He says to Skirnir, " One night is long, two are longer, how can I think of a third. Many times a month has seemed shorter than this weary waiting. " Now that is true love !
On the altar should be pictures of loved ones, current and deceased. No weapons should be on the altar or within sight. Couples of course should stand together, hand in hand, for this ritual. Toasts should be made to Freyr and Gerd, and all the other married Gods and Goddesses. Toasts should also be made to all those, past and present, who hold a special place in your heart. Couples should re - affirm their love for each other with cards and gifts, and all should be sealed with a kiss. This is also a great time for married couples to re - affirm their wedding vows.
To say harsh words, or argue, during this ritual, or the intimate dinner that follows, would be to disrespect Gerd, Freyr and all the other Gods and Goddesses. Try to remember that feeling that you felt for each other when you first met, or first fell in love, and re - live that moment this day. For those who are alone remember that we are loved by our friends, our ancestors, and our Gods and Goddesses.
The minute I heard my first love story
I started to look for you,
not knowing how blind that was.
Lovers don't finally meet somewhere,
They are in each other all along.
Go with Odin's wisdom, Freyja's love and Thor's protection !