Another Reader Question
Would you consider writing a post about the theology and practice of blessing something, be it a dwelling, a meal, another person, or etc?
Blessing is distinct from shielding or warding. Blessing specifically infuses a person, place, or thing with the grace or energy of the Gods, Their ‘mark’ if you will. It is akin to consecration, which can be said to change the inherent nature of a thing, and to rendering something sacred, which makes it the property of the Gods, rooted in the unhuman sphere. All of these things are connected to the flow of holiness from the Gods, through us, in the world, through everything. In the Northern Tradition, holiness is part of one’s soul-matrix. It’s ‘Vè,’ named after Loður. It is one’s capacity for carrying the holy, for being a portal or conduit for it, for working with it, the amount that one has cultivated in one’s life and character, one’s ability to engage, and that which aids in turning one’s consciousness to the Gods.
When one blesses a thing, ideally one has a strong connection to the Gods, opens to that, and allows Their power to flow through the mind, heart, and will, through the synapses of consciousness, through the hands and into/onto the thing/person being blessed. It flows over or into them like a gentle waterfall. This all presupposes that one is properly oriented with respect to devotional work, that one is in right relationship with the Gods insofar as one knows this to be possible. It presupposes that the Gods can work in our world and effect our consciousness. It presupposes that They are willing to do so, and in fact, may wish to engage with us in some way. It presupposes that we can have a relationship, a reciprocal and interactive one. It also presupposes that there is something about the Gods that changes that which it touches.
Blessing also implies that the person doing the blessing have a cultivated faith, a reliance on the Gods, and some comprehension that Their grace is a real and palpable thing. I think that one can pray over a person/thing and ask for a blessing, or give thanks (in the case of meals) and that it is good to do so. That is slightly different from the act of actively blessing. In the first, the person doing the blessing is requestingthat the gods do this thing. It is a prayer, an act of reaching out. In the second, the person is becoming a living conduitfor a flow of holy power that moves through him or her and onto the thing/person being blessed, i.e. being infused with that divine grace. Both are good but there is an ontological difference between them.
I hope that answers your question.