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Wights and Spirit Houses

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Forums -> Norse Paganism -> Wights and Spirit Houses

Wights and Spirit Houses
By: Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 1

In the Norse tradition there are many different types of spirit which are all classified as wights. Wights can be varying. The Gods are considered to be wights, and we as people are considered to be wights as well, though obviously not on the same level. Inbetween the Gods and Us are several other types of wights, the most commonly known being: Landvaettir (Land Wights) and Husvaettir (House Wights). Wights are often seen to be less than actually deities, but more close to a kinship with us as people. It is for this reason that many practices in Heathenry encourage the building of relationships with these wights.

Land Wights: They are said to come in a variety of shapes, sizes, attitudes, personalities. They tend to live in certain aspects of a landscape- a tree, rock, stump. They tend to be almost personifications of the land around you. If you move, you would be dealing with different land wights. Several types of magick, specifically things like Stangs (even more so the Nidstang) deal directly with these wights. You can read more of the stuff Ive already written about land wights here: http://www.spellsofmagic.com/coven_ritual.html?ritual=2215&a...

House Wights: These are a type of spirit that inhabit your home. Often when a Heathen moves into a new place, they do a landtaking ritual, in which they invite the local wights into their house. House wights, unlike the land wights, are thought to actually move around with the person they follow. If they like you. They are attributed to bringing luck to the household, watching over your possessions, and helping out here and there where they can. They are often called upon in certain protection rites and workings, especially when regarding where one lives.

They are known to be mischievous when they are upset, and can even become very violent. It was thought that wights dislike certain things, like loud noises, rudeness, when someone forgets to give them an offering here and there, and pollution or the disturbance of the lands they inhabit. They are supposedly very fond of other things like music, candles, small food offerings, drinks. But one must know when working with wights that they are very similar in disposition to us, in that they have the capacity to be good bad and everywhere in-between. Wights are individualized spirits and cannot be lumped together under and specific stereotype. There are several stories of wights being helpful, and lending great knowledge to people who work with them. But there are also several stories of the wights being offended by a person, and bad things following that. Some wights are said to just be very bad in general, with only the sole intent of bothering a person.

Honoring the wights, in this tradition, was just as important as honoring the Gods. Wights are very magickal and can be incorporated into your practice, if you so choose to. This is why many Heathens take their time to become friendly with the local landvaettir/husvaettir. There are many ways in which you can honor the wights. Many Heathens like to Blot for the wights, which generally involves a type of ritual where you make a sacrifice, and often have a meal and a drink (part of which you give for offerings). Another common way to honor wights is to make stangs, and Godpoles. You can read about those here: http://www.spellsofmagic.com/read_post.html?post=451255

But my favorite way to honor the wights is to build spirit houses. A spirit house can be made out of pretty much whatever you want to make it out of. They can be very varied: some may be jars full of spirit related items, or little trinkets. Some may be stuffed dolls, or abstract figures. Some may be actual miniature houses (which you can make out of wood and carvings, moss roofs, sticks for walls, who knows!). It does not necessarily matter which way you decide to make your house for the wights. For landvaettir and such, I typically would use natural things such as sticks, wicker, grass, and stones, but natural materials are not a requirement so keep that in mind! You could make a full altar dedicated to the wights, if you wanted, but thats like giving them a mansion and not something typically done (unless you dedicate it to a group of wights in particular, like the Disir). The point of this spirit house is to be the place where you leave offerings for the wights. Ideally, this is where you will be leaving your food/drink/trinket.

Some people suggest that the wights may have specific requirements for their spirit houses. Raven K once said that he had dedicated his spirit house to a water wight, and went on a trip to the ocean where he splashed the house with fresh ocean water to appease it. If you happen to work with a lot of earthy wights, you could get a jar and fill it with dirt, bark, moss etc from the surrounding area. If you have a horse wight, you would get horse-associated things to incorporate into the spirit house. The spirit house expands and changes based on your relationship with the wights you are working with and your understanding of what type of wights you may be dealing with. If you are dealing with fire wights, for instance, you wouldnt want to make them a spirit house right next to the sink or touching water. Things like that. You should place your spirit house in an area that is safe for it to remain in, and also relevant to what its for.

Dont worry if you dont think your spirit house looks the best it could. That doesnt matter! What is important is how you use the spirit house. Periodically greet it, leave food there, leave shiny trinkets and random things you find, leave items associated with the wights you work with.

Here's just some examples of things you could do:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a3/Skull_Spirit_House.jpg
http://img3.etsystatic.com/004/0/6802333/il_fullxfull.354148607_o8c1.jpg
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-KwSubMhyn10/T4uVrg5aBtI/AAAAAAAAA8c/iZRpNz52QaE/s1600/realloghm1.jpg
http://wytchofthenorth.files.wordpress.com/2010/12/sany3044.jpg
http://forestgrove.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/2011_08150231.jpg

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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By: Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 2
I love these posts. One doesn't often hear about such things involving the Norse traditions.
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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By:
Post # 3

Awesome post Percy. I have been working with some wights nearby and have built a house for them inside a big shrub that had a natural hollowed out spot in it. In my spirit houses I usually place a few things to entertain the wights and I place tools, food, drink, etc. for them. Any interested parties could look at my photos on my profile to get an example of a spirit home. Keep the posts coming Percy I loved this :D

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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By:
Post # 4
I never heard of it before.Thanks Personified,for the information you shared.Amazing post!
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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By: / Knowledgeable
Post # 5

I love how you word your writing =) I really like the idea of building spirit houses, it's intuitive. Thank you for a great post!

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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By: Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 6
Thanks for reading!
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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By: / Knowledgeable
Post # 7

I saw your pictures of your spirit house, Clever! That is very neat. I actually tend to go with the jar idea. I like to keep the jars up on a shelf near my main altars and fill them with related items, and shiny things. Lots of shiny things. I did have a weird experience once where one of the jars broke into several pieces and I couldn't find some of the items I had placed in it. I quickly made another one. There is no wrath like the wrath of an angered wight.

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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By: / Knowledgeable
Post # 8
This thread has been moved to Heathenism from Misc Topics.
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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By: / Novice
Post # 9
Merry meet, i have recently started reading about the Norse traditions, and was wondering how one contacts or meets a wight.
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Re: Wights and Spirit Houses
By:
Post # 10

I like the recent spirit house I saw Krasskova post on her facebook. iT is really marvlious. The Greeks have something similiar to what is called a Lars.

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