Well it is that time of year once again, (August) and the time of harvest is upon us! Although this date will vary from group to group, person to person, typicfally in the northern hemisphere it is around this time that we celerbate the bounty of the Earth, and the gifts that she brings us with the help of Frey.
Even though many of us are no longer farmers, we still depend on the land for all that we are given if you dont always realize it. Maybe we do not depend on it directly but most of us go to the grocery store and buy things that have come from the fields. This is a time to honor Frey, god of the harvest, rains, and fertility. A time to thank him for the bounty of the earth, and all the gifts that he bestows upon us.
We honor him because with out him, simply we would not have much of our food supply, and quite obviously without that, we do not have much at all! He bestows fertility to the fields and plants, gives them life, giving rain so that they may grow and flourish. With out him, as with many of the gods and goddesses we would not be alive today.
The Great God Frey gives life and fertility to all plants (along with Jord, Nerthus and many others). These plants including trees, give us oxygen. And we all know what that is for. So if you are not going to honor Frey, son of Njord, for the bounty of the land at least honor him for the life of the plants and world around us! We honor Frey by giving him a blot, and a grand feast from our own gardens and the fields. (If you do not have these things at least go spend some money and get a few things from a farmers market or something similar).
We thank Frey, and honor him for the harvest and the fertility of the land and ask him to give the land even greater fertility in the coming year and in the dark of winter.
Of course, there is more to thank Frey for than just the fertility of the land, but also for ourselves, and for our families, for Frey is also assocaited with the fertility of man, and we all know what that is needed for! So this coming Freyfaxi, remeber to honor Frey for all that he does for us.
The holiday of FreyFaxi is ancient, and was much more important for the lives of our ancestors that it is today. Without a good harvest, many many people would perish in the winter. We honor Frey to thank him for the many harvests that we have had, if there was one terrible one, some of us may not be here today. Thanks to Frey we are. If a year is particularly horrible, such as this one is turning out to be, a more…drastic sacrifice would be used. Animal, human in some cases.
The name Lammas is taken from an Anglo-Saxon heathen festival which was forcibly Christianized. The name (from hlaf-mass, "loaves festival") implies, it is a feast of thanksgiving for bread, symbolizing the first fruits of the harvest.
Heathens mark the holiday by baking a figure of the God Freyr in bread, and then symbolically sacrificing and eating it.
Again, no purely Heathen name has survived for this festival, which takes place at the beginning of August, as this was the time when the first fruits of harvest were brought to the church as gifts; since this was taken over from Heathen custom. In English and German tradition, the First Sheaf was often bound and blessed as an offering to Heathen deities or the spirits of the field at the beginning of harvest, just as the Last Sheaf was at its end. English folk custom also includes the decoration of wells and springs.
In Heathenism today, the feast is especially thought of as holy to Freyr as a fertility God, Thor as a harvest God and his wife Sif, whose long golden hair can be seen in fields of ripe grain. The warriors who had gone off to fight at the end of planting season came back, loaded with a summer's worth of plunder and ready to reap the crops that had ripened while they were gone. Loaf-Feast is the end of the summer's vacation, the beginning of a time of hard work which lasts through the next two or three months, while we ready ourselves for the winter.
Today we honor him with mead, or some type of drink, food from our table, typically foods we harvest ourselves, for example baked bread that we have made ourselves from the wheat he has bestowed upon us. Anyway that you honor Frey, is a good way. Traditionally however, it is with a blot and feast.
We hope you all have a wonderous Freyfaxi!
Hail Frey! Hail the Harvest! May yours be bountiful!