There’s a new Heathen festival that’s “Sprung up” in Darlington, MD. The Nine Worlds Festival. This festival describes itself as:
“a celebration of the Norse/Germanic/Anglo-Saxon Gods and Goddesses! We are gathering at Ramblewood Retreat Center in Darlington, MD from October 18 – 21 , 2012, Thursday through Sunday. Come walk the Nine Worlds that spin around the World Tree, and honor the Gods, spirits, and ancestors.”
There are several excellent (and some controversial) lecturers at this festival including:
Erik Clark is a brewer of sacred mead, Rune Worker, Fellow in the Rune Gild, and a follower of the Old Northern European traditions and Gods in a modern context. His focus of study in the Rune Gild is on pre-Christian Anglo-Saxon spirituality and religion. He believes language is one of the keys to Mystery and enjoys studying the mysteries in his native language and it’s predecessors. He is currently nursing a growing interest in altered/ecstatic states created by breath work, singing, chanting, etc. He lives alone with two cats and four chickens and more computers than any one person needs. He enjoys sewing, singing, playing his guitar, making, hacking, cooking, and creating new things out of old things. He has a deep passion for things that grow, self-sufficiency, and getting along with people.
Del has been referred to as “the red fizzy soda of the Gods – they keep passing it around saying, ‘You’ve got to try some of this!’” A child of Loki and an advocate for many underdogs, Del has worked as a Pagan hospital chaplain and presents regularly in Pagan and alternative lifestyle circles.
Raven Kaldera is a Northern-Tradition Pagan shaman, herbalist, astrologer, transgendered intersexual activist, homesteader, and founding member of the First Kingdom Church of Asphodel. He is the author of too many books to list here, including the Northern-Tradition Shamanism series, Drawing Down the Spirits (with Kenaz Filan), Northern Tradition for the Solitary Practitioner (with Galina Krasskova), Pagan Astrology, and Hermaphrodeities: The Transgender Spirituality Workbook. ‘Tis an ill wind that blows no minds.
The author of Lilith: Queen of the Desert, Anya Kless is a dual-tradition priestess and spirit worker, dedicated to Odin on one side and Lilith on the other. She has many years of experience in juggling the demands of Norse Gods with deities from other cosmologies. Her writing can also be found in the upcoming anthology Gender and Transgender in Modern Paganism and at her blog “The Fruit of Pain.”
Galina Krasskova is a free range tribalist Heathen who has been a priest of Odin and Loki for close to twenty years. Originally ordained in the Fellowship of Isis in 1995, Ms. Krasskova also attended the New Seminary where she was ordained in 2000. She is a member of Ironwood Kindred (MA), Asatru in Frankfurt (Frankfurt am Main, Germany), the First Kingdom Church of Asphodel (MA), the American Academy of Religion, and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice. She has been a state contracted expert on the Asatru faith, and is currently involved in prison ministry. Ms. Krasskova holds diplomas from The New Seminary (2000), a B.A. in Religious Studies from Empire State College (2007), and an M.A. in Religious Studies from New York University (2009). She’s presented at prestigious academic conferences including those held at Harvard, Santa Barbara University, and Ohio State University. An experienced diviner, ordeal master, and conjure woman, her primary interest is in devotional work and the reconstruction of Northern Tradition shamanism. She can be found at Gangleri’s Grove.
Scott Mohnkern was introduced to Heathenry by Raven Kindred South in the 1990′s after having left the Methodist church. He started as a solitary practitioner, and at the turn of the century formed a study/ritual group and started teaching classes at local festivals. Since then he has written two books, A Year of Viking ritual and Hanging from the Tree: Living with the Runes. He sees the northern traditions not just as a religious practices, but as a way of conducting one’s life. Scott is strongly tied to Odin, Freyja, Tyr, and Thor. He currently teaches northern European topics and technical topics at Cherry Hill Seminary.
Laura Patsouris comes from a long line of mediums, Ancestor Workers and practitioners of the esoteric arts. She was born in Miami and was raised in the Cuban community there before moving to New England in 1986. She started on this path at a young age when her beloved Grandmother died and she realized their bond remained strong and vital. Today Laura lives in Connecticut with her family, works as a nurse, and teaches classes in Ancestor Work both locally and regionally. It is her life’s mission to teach others to honor and work with their dead and to emphasize that ancestral obligations transcend cultural and religious boundaries.
Eric S. considers himself a Heathen philosopher. Eric follows a Norse path influenced by classical philosophy (especially the Greco-Roman moralists), pragmatism, and scholarship. He has always felt strongly tied to Heimdall, even when he didn’t really realize why or what that meant. He also relates to Freya and other female deities. Eric is drawn to guardianship at many levels.
Jane T. Sibley, Ph.D., is a traditional Norse practitioner and a specialist in Norse folklore and runes. She has taught at many Pagan events for decades, including at Rites of Spring, Feast of Lights, Twilight Covening, Beltane, Ecumenicon … the list goes on … and also hosts MithraCon, which focuses on Mithraism and other cults in the Roman Empire. Her books, Norse Mythology According to Uncle Einar,The Hammer of the Smith, and the recently-released “The Divine Thunderbolt: Missile of the Gods are available in the dealers’ room along with her spices and seasoning blends, and teas. http://www.auntiearwenspices.com/
Tchipakkan is an artist, writer, healer, and eclectic Pagan-Heathen-rustic. Openly Pagan since the 60s, she’s currently living on a small farm in NH aimed at self sufficiency and sustainability, with 3 adult children (all artists and writers), and a varying assortment of animal-friends and livestock. On weekends Tchipakkan teaches, while her daughters sell the family’s art through Cabochons, and they write, paint, sculpt, etc. the rest of the week. Recent writings include articles in SageWoman and Hex magazines. Tchipakkan also wrote Divine Cookies and The Heathen Cookie Book, and paints book covers and portraits.
Elizabeth Vongvisith is a Lokean priestess, consort and nun, gydja of Iron Wood Kindred, member of the Kingdom of Asphodel, politically incorrect liberal, intrepid road tripper, part-time house elf and dedicated amateur cook. Her other books include Trickster My Beloved: Poems for Laufey’s Son and Love and Shadows: Devotional Poetry, both published by Asphodel Press. She lives in central Massachusetts.