Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Berchtaslaaf: Herring, Lentils, Coins

Berchtaslaaf begins at sunset tonight.

In addition to the required herring and gruel meal, we have a couple of other things to consider.

- Three coins set out on the windowsill. There is an echo of the Lutzelfraa's begging during Voryuul in this custom.

- Lentils (uncooked and not to eat) scattered. Lentils are not part of the required meal, but there is an association in some circles between Berchta and legumes, and our oral lore specifically names lentils.

The lentils are scattered in a manner similar to the three-bean offerings that we are to do when we disturb the soil for gardening or planting. Lentils are good nitrogen fixers, which could be also a link between Berchta's concerns with rebirth and renewal and Luul's concern with keeping young greens safe and strong through the winter.

Many Urglaawer have come to know Berchta better in 2019. I am among those who have. Now with Twelfth Night fast approaching, I have come to understand the beating that She gave me during Voryuul with my musings. All of this turmoil actually has paid off. I got Her message (with a bit of help from Frouwa for extra clarity). I have worked through and understood some of the things that made me uncomfortable, and I can base some New Year's Resolutions on changing my reactions to some of these inputs.

This will be an extra special Berchtaslaaf because it will be the first time that we carry Her statuary through the town. I expect this to become a growing and evolving tradition over the next few years.

Hail Berchta!

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