Freyr (lit; Lord) is a member of the Vanir tribe of deities, and also, the Aesir (the tribe of Odin and Thor) due to some war time bargaining. He and his twin sister Freya (Lit; Lady) along with their father Njord are the three main deities of the Vanir tribe. Generally speaking these three govern matters of fruitfulness, abundance, wisdom, fertility, sex and magic. All the things that make life fun.
Freyr is the most renowned of the Æsir; he rules over the rain and the shining of the sun, and therewithal the fruit of the earth; and it is good to call on him for fruitful seasons and peace. He governs also the prosperity of men.
Gylfaginning XXIV, Brodeur's translation
Fertility is key to survival. It doesn't matter if we are taking about animals, people or plants, if things are not fertile, nothing lives. So, the archetypal fertility/green man/horned god that we see here in Freyr is always going to be relevant to life. While we may not be offering blood sacrifices and going out and tilling the fields every year, honoring these gods by marking the seasons with celebrations and offerings enhances that energy of fertility and prosperity in our lives.
Freyr in many ways mirrors the same properties that Herne, Cernunnos, Pan, Dionysus, all gods of fertility, growth and abundance. And also gods of freedom from social strictures and celebrating life through sexuality. It makes sense that when you celebrate the gods with sex you end up having more babies to celebrate. Which is why fertility gods were nearly always also gods of abundance and wealth.
But how would you worship a god that people offered blood sacrifices to in an age when blood sacrifices are really not our thing anymore? It;s very simple, he is Norse, he likes to drink. Many now days will sacrifice alcohol in place of goats and boar, mead often being favored by the Norsemen. You can also see this sacrifice in action in the simple gesture of children leaving milk and cookies out for Santa. A sacrifice to the pagan yule god in return for presents worth much more than a glass of milk and a plate of cookies. (In our house it was potato chips and beer, my father said Santa preferred them).
When you offer sacrifices to a fertility god, its about far more than pregnancy and babies. It's about making a conscious and considered statement that tells the Universe “I want more abundance in my life and to prove it, I am giving you this sacrifice to show that I have plenty to give. I know that in the giving you will multiply this gift and bring it full circle back into my life. Thank you for giving me the abundance to be able to give freely to you.”
Fertility touches every area of our lives, the fertile mind, the creative hands, the intuition that guides us. These are all forms of fertility and abundance that this particular archetypal energy multiplies in our lives. So, since we are in the season of harvests and many of us are counting our blessings and deciding what to bring forth into winter and what to leave behind in autumn. Now is the perfect time to give thanks for everything that is in your life no matter how big or small and maybe pour out a glass of mead to the old gods.
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