Dec 30th – The 11th Day of Yule
Good luck into the coming Year, Idunn and Bragi, Wassail
The eleventh day of Yule is for Idunn and Bragi. We honor this couple with singing, cheer, and baking. A festive activity that honors Idunn and Bragi is Wassailing. Pick a fruit tree, and wassail the fruit, then sing to the fruit tree. These activities will bring good luck, and cheer into your home.
In Norse mythology, Idunn is the goddess of spring or rejuvenation and the wife of Bragi, the god of poetry. She was the keeper of the magic apples of immortality, which the gods must eat to preserve their youth. She is gentle and pleasant to be around. If invited into your life she brings hope and youth. Her presence encouraged positive energy.
In Norse mythology, Bragi is the god of poetry. He is associated with the skalds, the talented poets and musicians of Viking Age culture. He is the husband of Idunn. Long-bearded Bragi is a Winter god of leisure and entertainment when the work of the harvest season was over, and folks settled into the long months of cold and snow. In the less active months of Winter, a skald would be a great asset to any longhouse! Storytellers, poets, and singers always held a place of honor in cultures that maintained an oral tradition.
Honoring Idunn & Bragi
Honor Bragi by leaving musical instruments of any kind; well-written, impassioned books, music scores; the words to good poetry and songs; Herb Bennet and Purslane on your altar. If you play instruments, this is the perfect time to play for your house, your guest, and for Bragi. As a storyteller of old, he will appreciate storytelling!
Honor Idunn by leaving apples (real or made of semiprecious stones or carved); potted plants, herbs, and flowers; apple blossoms, fruits, and fruit blossoms; gardening tools, a drinking horn on your altar. It’s difficult to honor Idunn in her traditional way as she’s a goddess of Spring. Baking anything with apples in it is a good way to honor what Idunn offers us.
The word Wassail is ultimately derived from the Anglo-Saxon greeting “wes þú hál” meaning “be you hale”. It’s a hot mulled drink that was traditionally drunk on 12th night but was also drank throughout the 12 days of Yule in England. The ritual of Wassailing was held to pray for a good apple harvest, in which the town would encircle the largest apple tree, sing a traditional song, and place pieces of toast soaked in wassail in the branches for the birds (and the spirits).
Today, make wassail in honor of Iðunn. If you have a fruit-bearing tree at your home, you can wassail your own tree and pray for its fruitfulness in the next year. If you don’t own a fruit-bearing tree, you can either find such a tree in a park or in the wild or find a friend who would like their tree to be wassailed. Offer the tree and the spirits (and the birds!) pieces of toast dipped in wassail, left in the tree’s branches.
Here’s a good wassailing recipe: Wassail with Apple Cider and Sweet Spices – Nourished Kitchen
Good luck into the coming Year
It’s getting very close to the end of the year. Performing the ritual of wassailing would create good luck into the new year. There are several ways to invite good luck into your home in the coming year:
- A small elephant ornament, elephant-shaped cushion, or pottery object brings good luck, protection, wealth, and wisdom as this animal is a sign of good luck, understanding, and loyalty.
- Fish are lucky and symbolize good health, prosperity, happiness, wealth, and power. If you have an aquarium, do some work with it today, change out the plants, and give it a fresh start for the fresh year.
- Using crystals such as rose quartz, bloodstone, turquoise, smoky quartz, and others brings love, happiness, prosperity, good luck, relieves stress, improves creativity, and provides peace of the mind and soul.
- Plant and herbs with rounded leaves close to the entrance create peace and balance. Putting Irish moss under a doormat brings good fortune and wealth. Similarly, keeping 4 leaf clovers and hanging aloe Vera is very lucky.
- A Tortoise represents longevity and has the power to spread positive energy. Tortoise animals control the energy in an individual’s life. If you place a tortoise or a turtle in the backyard of your workplace or home will result in a huge availability of energy.
- Hanging wind chimes at the entrance pulls prosperity and good luck. Hanging it on the place of eating, sleeping, studying, or working prevents positive energy so never do this.
Just remember you do not want to enter the New Year with clutter in your home, mind, heart, or soul. Decluttering is very important today and tomorrow.