When an Asatruar (and other heathens of course) moves into a new place it is customary to perform some sort of land claiming/taking ritual. This is to establish the home as a place of worship and connection with the gods and local land wights.
There are several ways to perform a landtaking ritual. The most common is the circle your property with fire. This of course is not to be taken literally or else your home might be reduced to ashes. A common way to do this is to light a candle at night and walk around the edge of your property and thus circle the land with fire. Once the area has been circled it is made clean then a declaration is made. You might just simply state "This is my home, may the gods be welcome and bless me and may the wights be welcome here as well."
There are extra factors that one could incorporate into a landtaking ritual as well. It is common to place hazel wood poles at each cardinal point of the property. Some even carve Thurisaz, the rune of Thor, to invoke Thor's protection for their home. Additionally, some make the hallowing sign of the hammer Mjolnir for added protection from Thor. This is of course personal preference.
Another added element is that if you have claimed land before take a little bit of it with you to the new home. A little less common but still practiced. Some take a bit of sod and dirt from their previous home and sprinkle it upon the site of their new home. This of course welcomes any passing wights that happened to have visited your old home.
The follow up to your landtaking ritual is to share a meal with the wights. This welcomes them and makes your connection more personal. Also a shrine or altar could be erected to place offerings to the wights upon. It is important that you let the wights in your area know that you appreciate them and welcome them to your land. Sort of like when you bring your new neighbors some baked goods and say hello.
Other would go far to do a sumbel or blot dedicated to the Northern gods and hail each god and goddess in a their sumbel or blot. This of course would be very spiritual and inspirational but you should be prepared to spend a lot of time as the Norse pantheon is quite large and diverse. I do suggest if you have any particular deity than perhaps perform a dedication blot to them.
Re: Landtaking Ritual By: Personified Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 2 Oct 03, 2012
Great post, Clever!
Landtaking and Landleaving rites are very important to Heathens in general. Because Heathenry involves working with landwights, housewights, and ancestor spirits, it's very important to keep them in mind when you are moving to a new place, or leaving an old. Our belief system tells us that the wights of Norway are not the same wights of America, which are not the same wights of Africa, etc. Landwights are seen as a very local type of spirit, so when you are moving it's a good thing to set aside some time to welcome them in, alert them to your presence, etc. Especially since our literature also tells us that should the landvaettir become upset, they will impact everything around them, making things go wrong or not work properly.
When I have moved, I typically walk around the property with a small flame, and set some "spaces" for the wights. In those areas, I come back, and I set up small offerings for them: little huts put together from sticks, moss, vegetation. Food. I leave shiny things. If I have landscaping of some kind to do, I do a similar ritual to let the landvaettir know. I do not take more than I need from my yard. I replace the things I take as well.
Thanks Percy! I plan to do more sometime in the future. For reference there is a picture of a shrine for wights of my area located in the photos tab of my profile. Just to get a general idea for some interested in making a shrine for the wights in their area.