Sowelu: A Sermon on the Old Gods

Evolution of the rune, Sowelu (sowelo). Courtesy of wikipedia.

Evolution of the rune, Sowelu (sowilo). Courtesy of wikipedia.

You can’t jail the sun or lock it up in prison. You can’t put the sun in a jar or package it for sale. It doesn’t need any advertising, or for you to vote it up into the sky. Nor can you make the sun lie to you, deceive you, or rise in the West.

You can’t stop the sun from setting or rising the next day. You can’t make the sun give more or less than what it already gives, nor can you tax the sun, rob the sun, take out a loan from the sun, or diminish it in any way.

You can’t say when or if the sun will die, or when it was born; and pretending you know by counting up billions of years, which is only an egocentric measure of one planet’s revolution around the sun, or say you understand what a billion or five billion of these revolutions means. Nor can you be certain that the earth will continue revolving around the sun, and not perish before the sun ceases to shine.

You can’t say the sun is vain or self-centered, even though all eyes are upon it, all live beneath it, everyone looks up to it, no one and nothing can live without it, and everything revolves around it. The sun is the most selfless and giving of all, shining eternally on each and every plant, rock, criminal, saint, and artist all the same, now, then, and always.

Sun shined down on the ocean when it was primordial and life was first forming in gentle tide pools warmed by its face, and shines down the same on you today, no different than the first protozoa to ever feel its radiance.

Nothing is more Glorious, August, Supreme and Majestic, and yet no one and nothing ever contends with it. The sun has no enemies; no army can defeat or deny its benevolence.

If you asked me for the concept of a God, I’d say you could start here. Sun is not masculine, but if you wanted it to be, there is plenty evidence of that human projection dating back to the Egyptians (Sun Ra). In ancient Norse and Celtic cultures, the sun, represented by the rune, Sowelu, is a feminine deity that gives life.

It gave you life. Continues to sustain your life every day.

And yet, the sun itself is a small part of a far greater whole, just like you are one soul among seven billion on this earth. There are 100 billion suns in this galaxy alone. And there are one hundred thousand galaxies in the universe we’ve observed from this planet.

And now is when it stops making sense—one hundred billion times one hundred thousand. What is that?

You wanted me to support your individuality, plans, designs and egoistic idea of yourself, and I cannot do that, the Sun said to anyone. Nor can this sun or the billions like the sun blinking down on you validate your singularity.

One wave reaches a shore somewhere, releases, touches its furthest beach reach, and retreats into the ocean that carried it here.

All allowed and permitted, nothing can be jailed, taxed, robbed, or diminished by anything else. All of this power connected, rising and falling like breath and death, fear and desire, time and the body, sun rise and sun set, today and tomorrow, these waves advance and retreat.

The sun wants you to know this, be this, join this concert eternal, same as any thing that ever lived anywhere in time. If that is not love in the highest, then it is only because I’m still having trouble seeing with one eye open.

[Gary D Aker lives in Portland, Oregon where he currently pursues dance, photography and creating his crime novels, in addition to writing lyrical and narrative poetry, flash fiction, sudden memoir, long-form memoir, articles, numerology charts and whatever else is lying about that needs to get written. His poetry and flash fiction has been recently published in Night Bomb Press, and The Smoking Poet.]