The Saga of Odin/Chapter Two: Life among the Vikings
Life among the Vikings
“Today I would like to talk about what happens when a Divine Soul is born on the Earth with the Mission of Service.
“There are Those Who remember about Their Divinity after incarnating.
“But there also Those Who fulfill what was determined in the Divine Plan without realizing Their Unity with the Primordial Ocean of the Divine Consciousness.
“In addition, there exist Those Who can recall and strengthen this Unity during Their life on the Earth and later, while remaining in Complete Mergence with the United We of all the Perfect Ones, fulfill everything that was determined for this incarnation of Theirs!
“As a child, Olav did not know who he really was.”
“How could this happen? For his mother Ainu should have told him this! Everything could have been so much simpler.”
“It is very difficult for Me right now to explain to you all the nuances of the law that governs the formation of people’s destinies. I am only going to tell you the most important principle, namely, everything is done for the best, taking into account the interests of many souls.
“Ainu was taken from the material plane before she had time to teach Olav everything she knew and could do. She only managed to tell him very little, and he had to learn all the most important things by himself.
“The problem was that Ainu and Richard were very different according to the level of their subtlety and according to their ability to understand the Divine. So, in order to preserve the Divine subtlety of Ainu, she was taken from the material world much sooner.
“The task of Olav then was to repeat once again the entire Path all the way from a human to God in order to memorize well all the stages of this Path and the methods of ascension. Thanks to this, He would later be able to show this Trail to many other people.
“I want to repeat this again to avoid misunderstandings.
“According to the higher plans, sometimes Those of Us Who come to the Earth have to carry out the life of an ordinary person for some time and to look at the world with the eyes of a mortal just like everyone else. This is done so that later He or She can return to the Immortality of God and can explain this Path to other people thanks to the received experience.
“It happens that it is first necessary to know weakness to later obtain the Power of the Omnipotent One; it happens that at times it is necessary to suffer from the lack of understanding to later be able to obtain the Highest Understanding; it happens that at times it is first necessary to know, through one’s own experience, the importance of the love that unites one person with another in order to be able to unite oneself in Love with the Divine Primordial Power.
“Keep listening! What I am going to tell can help you and many others to strengthen the Unity with the Divine World! It will also help you to live with the understanding of that Divine World and of the Knowledge about which we will speak later on!”
* * *
After the unexpected death of Ainu, Richard was not able to recover from the grief for a long time. He did not want to live in a place where everything reminded him about his lost beloved; he could not live anymore without her in the harmony that she had created. So, he took his beloved son, Olav, who was five years old at the time, and began to travel.
They wandered for a long time, which was fairly difficult for both of them due to the age of the boy, and later they arrived at the sea.
Its vastness captivated them with its beauty and power, and so Richard decided to live near the sea!
Soon he met a jarl, a leader of the Vikings, who accepted him into his community together with his son.
In this way, Richard returned to the life of a warrior, who went on sea voyages during almost all of the spring, summer, and fall.
It was a difficult time for Olav, for during the maritime campaigns, Richard was gone for long durations with other men, and Olav stayed on the shore with the women and children of other warriors.
For the community, Richard and Olav continued being strangers for a long time.
As a result, Olav had to endure the teasing and aggression of the older children. In addition, the woman in whose house he lived during the absence of his father was angry with him all the time, because Olav followed the rule of not eating meat and fish, which was instilled in him during his childhood. Due to this, Olav very often left the table hungry without having eaten anything.
If it were not for the reserves of wild nuts and other edible plants that he had learned to recognize during his childhood, he would not have survived.
He was especially bullied by the teasing of the adolescent named Bolly, the oldest son of that woman.
Bolly had grown up without his father, under constant reproaches of his despotic mother. He was sickly, clumsy, and weaker than his peers. Even adults quite often made fun of him, and he kept accumulating resentment and malicious desires to humiliate others in the same way as he had been humiliated. Bolly found pleasure in venting his sensation of inferiority on others who were weaker than he.
Olav, who was three years younger, became for Bolly the principal object of such attacks.
Bolly enjoyed making sarcastic remarks to Olav, ordering him to do meaningless things, and lecturing him in a burlesque manner.
Olav was very surprised by this attitude and could not understand it. He was accustomed to the fact that mutual love and care are natural in the relations between those who are older and those who are younger.
However, thanks to this behavior of Bolly, Olav learned to maintain inner calm and not get angry in response to offenses. He maintained an imperturbable calm even when other children joined Bolly.
And if fights occurred, with each one Olav became better and better at being able to defend himself and other weaker children, for Richard taught him many techniques necessary for battle. In these harsh lands people respected strength, and Olav, fighting at his level of a child, defended his right to not be like everyone else. In this way, gradually, he gained the respect of his contemporaries thanks to his ability to be just, generous, and strong and thanks to the fact that he never employed his strength unjustifiably.
Even many adults began to say that he would become a true jarl when he grew up! For the strength of the soul is perceived by people even when they do not understand why the acts and words of such a strong person have a notable effect on others.
The jarl, the head of that community, also possessed strength, but it was coarse and it kept all the members under cruel submission.
The name of the jarl was Bjorn. He was of great stature and looked like a giant bear because of his constitution and strength. His decisions were the law for everyone, his judgment was not questioned; no objections were accepted. Those who were in disagreement with the jarl had to either be quiet or leave the community. Anyone who tried to doubt the judgment of his decisions caused an explosion of anger in him and could be killed by the jarl right there or be subjected to another severe punishment.
* * *
One day Bjorn spoke to his people about his campaign plans to distant lands that were located in the far south. He said that there were rich settlements and even cities there, as well as ships that did not have warriors on them. He also said that an abundant booty was expected from this campaign in the lands where no Viking had ever been before.
After the exclamations of joy for this future campaign had calmed down, Olav suddenly dared to object the jarl himself! He stepped forward and asked him:
“Bjorn, do you think that you are governing wisely and do you believe that it will be fair to attack peaceful settlements and take their wheat by force, the wheat that we have not cultivated and the wealth that we do not have the right to claim? Would you like it if our houses and women were also subjected to an attack and looting, while our men were on the campaign?”
Richard did not have time to stop his son and now stood with a pale face and with his hand on the hilt of his sword. He was waiting for the inevitable retaliation for the audacity of Olav.
However, to the surprise of everyone, Bjorn did not get angry, instead he laughed and said:
“You are still a stranger among us and a brat, Olav! You have not yet understood how the true Vikings live! We fight with the strong and we do not harm children or women! That which we win in a good battle is rightfully ours!
“The cowards among the people who are afraid of battles will be kept alive and will simply pay a ransom for their lives.
“Brave warriors fight for glory and riches!
“And death in a battle is a great lot, because it opens the doors to the world beyond the grave where heroes live!
“I will take you with me, Olav, so that you learn to be proud to belong to our traditions!”
So, Bjorn decided to turn Olav into a warrior of the sea.
And that was how Olav climbed aboard a drekkar for the first time so that he could learn to be a “true Viking”, which meant that he should accustom himself to the “law of strength” and forget his ideas about justice, the ideas that he was not afraid to explain even to the jarl himself.
Olav was happy that he was going to the sea with his father. Only his thoughts about the criminal intentions of the jarl watered down his happiness. But he hoped that there would not be any battles or lootings.
Olav did not foresee how this campaign would end.
Meanwhile, the severe warriors taught him to control the sail and to row for long periods of time.
He became close friends with the helmsman Vagni, who told him and showed him, among other things, how to operate the rudder and how to determine the course from the stars.
They sailed farther south than they had ever done before.
The jarl had decided to amaze everyone with a great booty.
* * *
Olav remembered this battle for the rest of his life.
Since he was still an adolescent and wasn’t prepared for true combat, he was assigned, together with the helmsman Vagni (whose death would be too great of a loss for any campaign), to protect the drekkar, which would not be attacked according to the calculations of Bjorn. And the other warriors left to fight on land.
However, Olav was not able to avoid the battle, for three of the local warriors climbed onto the ship. Vagni fought with two of them, and the third attacked Olav.
He was much bigger and stronger, but Olav was able to block his attacks with success. Later he even wounded the third warrior on his right forearm, but in that same moment a sharp pain shot through his arm as well, even though Olav was not wounded. The pain that he caused instantly reflected onto his own body. He became dizzy and blind for some time and almost dropped his sword. Vagni, who had already wounded and disarmed his two attackers, arrived just in time to save him from an inevitable death.
Soon Olav saw how Richard was killed. It all happened as if in a dream. Olav watched everything from far away and, therefore, could not do anything.
The body of the one whom Olav loved very much, now lied on the ground. The body resembled a hollow shell covered in blood, and around it there were more bodies.
There were not many who perished in this battle. The defenders of that town surrendered soon and then started loading the drekkar with the ransom that the jarl determined that they had to pay for their lives, the lives of their families, and the integrity of their houses.
Olav watched all of this and his thoughts were full of pain. It further strengthened his understanding that the predatory raids of the Vikings were not heroic acts of strong people, as everyone around him thought, but crimes instead!
He had discussed this with his father many times before, but Richard saw no other way to survive. The lands where they lived were infertile and, besides, Richard had neither the desire nor the skills to live the life of a farmer.
So the atonement had arrived.
“What would have happened if I had refused to participate in this campaign? Perhaps, the loss of the only person dear to me is the severe punishment of the Gods so that I understand once and for all that one should not act against one’s own principles hoping that nothing happens? Isn’t it possible to live the life of a sailor without causing destruction and death to others?”
He felt as if he was now alone in this world.
“Where is that person who was my father? What will be his future?”
Vagni tried to comfort Olav telling him how glorious it is to die in battle, for the brave warriors who die in this way go immediately to Valhalla, where they meet Odin.
However, Olav was not sure that this was true, since the purpose of this battle was the looting of other people and their death, and this, then, was a deliberate injustice!
The father of Olav had told him before that his mother Ainu knew how to see the Gods and converse with Them. She also said that souls do not die and that people invented many lies about the Gods and about the rules of life for mortals. These rules, used by people to justify their depraved life, are so different from the real Divine Laws.
She taught him to live in a completely different way than the way of other people. But Richard was not able to live this way without her, and he did not tell much to Olav about what Ainu was like and about what she taught. For he believed that this would only bring problems and additional difficulties to the life of the boy, because these ethical principles were too pure and completely dissimilar to the reality that was around them!
Olav could barely remember his mother, for he was only five years old when she left. The biggest thing that he could remember when he thought about her was the state of his own infinite happiness coming from the tenderness of her love!
Later, on occasions, Olav saw her face consisting of Light. Her lips moved as if she wanted to say something, but he did not hear these words. He only felt her tenderness and care that embraced him from all sides!
And now he was left completely alone. “How will I continue to live on? And why do I need to keep living?” he thought.
Olav directed his mental questions to the world of the Gods and asked for Their help and understanding.
Meanwhile, all the Vikings rejoiced over the conquest of great riches! The death of some of their warriors was something typical. Fortune smiled upon them and they were returning with the drekkar full of wealth. They were triumphant!
Only the helmsman Vagni came to the jarl Bjorn and spoke to him gloomily and confidently:
“Stop the lading, Bjorn! The drekkar is overloaded! ¡Greed will destroy all of us!”
“Shut up, Vagni! I want to take everything that now belongs to us! We have laded even more than this!”
“Yes, jarl, we indeed have laded more, but we navigated along shores in good weather and we stopped in bays for the night. But now the open ocean is waiting for us!”
“Stop the panic, helmsman! You are whining like a woman!”
Vagni became gloomy, turned aside, stopped arguing, and went to check if the load was properly secured.
* * *
Very soon the ship, which was overloaded by the booty, came across a storm. This storm was so strong that the drekkar could not resist it and began to sink. Vagni once again saved the life of Olav by tying him to a piece of the mast. Olav then fainted and did not know what happened to everyone else.
Having regained his senses, he saw how a person with a brown face leaned over his body. The man said something to him in his own language, which Olav did not understand, and gave him something to drink.
In this way the destiny of Olav, controlled by the Divine Will, changed drastically and unexpectedly.
For what reason? To give him the possibility to search for the answers to the questions about the meaning of human life and to study them in new conditions, more appropriate for this.