Cite Your Sources!
by P R Reddall
P R Reddall contends that as we evolve spiritually, we become more discerning and perceptive, making decisions based on our inner guidance rather than superficial information.
Some years ago, while acting as an online tutor for a home study course on Odinic mythology, I had a conversation with a student in regard to a point which was made in the course. This particular point was certainly not a popularly held view, but it was one which our organisation put forth as correct.
Upon explaining this point, I was asked to ‘cite the source’. Having the luxury of time (as this was a conversation conducted via email), I pondered the query and decided to ask the director of our organisation for his thoughts.
Before I give you his answer, let me offer a little background information. The director of our organisation is held in very high regard; he has had a long history within Odinism and has walked a genuinely spiritual path. And while many look up to him, he in turn looked up to an older man (now passed from this realm) who he described to me as the “only genuine shaman I’ve ever known”.
The reason I want to offer a glimpse into the lineage of the organisation is that firstly it is very rare in this modern world to come across real, deep, genuinely spiritual folk whom we can look to for advice, and secondly there is so much content put out nowadays, which mostly amounts to the wild musings of the deranged.
Getting back to the original question regarding the citing of sources, the answer came back to me, “We are the source.”
Now, of course, this could sound arrogant, but before any Hyperborean noses are put out of joint, allow me to take you a little deeper.
At the heart of spirituality, the quest is to connect with the source. Some may view the source as bright, shining Sunna, some as Odin consciousness, some may call it Ond, and others still may hold differing views depending on their particular faith. Yet, most would agree that when one genuinely does connect, all that then flows will be truth.
As one progresses on the road towards awakening, decision-making and understanding the world around us becomes less about making snap judgments based on inaccurate data and more about connecting with the deep inner kenning of the blood and the source.
If one considers the numerous great historical figures, from Homer to Plato to Nietzsche, we will often find them cited as sources in modern works. Yet, do we think to question the sources themselves? Really, this question is illogical in a spiritual sense, for ‘the source’ should not, in this regard, be considered as the person originally doing the talking or writing. No, ‘the source’ is actually flowing through that individual. All he has done is tune in to the source and allow it to be put into words we can try to understand.
Therefore, when the director of our organisation said, “We are the source”, he was really alluding to the fact that over the years, a member (or members) had done genuine spiritual work in order to reach the conclusions which were then presented in the course which was subsequently offered.
This connection with the source can be termed ‘wisdom’, and it is at the heart of the Odinic faith. Despite there being many stories, sagas and verses which can be researched, most will be aware of the god Odin and his shamanic quest where he fasted for nine days and nine nights, hanging upside down in the World Tree, sacrificing himself for a draught of mead, losing an eye (i.e. gaining insight or a third eye chakra) and taking up the magical runes.
As one progresses on the road towards awakening, decision-making and understanding the world around us becomes less about making snap judgments based on inaccurate data and more about connecting with the deep inner kenning of the blood and the source. But let us not be arrogant here; things such as meditational awakening and shamanism take diligent effort, just as does gaining high grades in martial arts. It should not be seen as totally mystical; there is a system to work through for progress to be made. And this is why the director of the organisation was confident in saying, “We are the source.” It was not an arrogant or egotistical quip; it was based on wisdom. Furthermore, do not view awakening as an endpoint; I use the term towards awakening because the journey is the important part. As my old sensei once said to me, he would rather have a great white belt student in his class than a shoddy black belt. Everything stems from the white belt. And as comrades have told me, the Dan grade is the beginning of a journey rather than an end.
There is a view that anything worth saying has been said best by those who have gone before. Those who have studied the classics will understand. However, the cycles of the Yugas are long, and who is to say the great knowledge that will be revealed as time moves onwards? It is told that during the Wolf Age, man is not capable of comprehending the nature of the gods. Therefore, it seems wise to offer new ways of explaining truth, which can be better understood as man’s ability to accept new information.
In this life, the hard part is, of course, to be able to differentiate between a wise man and a fool. If this seems much too difficult in an era of eternal trickery, however, then cut out the middleman and work towards connecting with the source directly.
Waes thu Hael — Be thou Whole