Silence and the word

“Speak useful words or be silent”: - Hávamál 19

In many magickal traditions not just the Norse tradition it is often emphasized that words carry more weight than most initially think. The things that we say create reality. With every word, we continue to weave our future. The practice of Galdr (spell incantation; through the use of chanting, singing and voice) is in this sense a very mundane practice. So much so that anytime you voice a sound you are doing Galdr. It is for this reason that being mindful of our words becomes important. It’s not uncommon to find that we say things we don’t mean, additionally it is not uncommon throughout our lives to somewhat jinx ourselves. Our words can indeed backfire upon us as well as bring things into our lives; thus, the practice of silence is an important part of magickal practice.

We must keep in mind that magick is not just intentional, everyone is always performing magick in the most mundane sense. For the practitioner, the Vitki, the Völva, we should never say anything without being absolutely sure of its truth, and absolutely sure that we believe it. As such it is our responsibility to take extreme care in the words we choose to voice. However it is not just choosing the right words that is important but rather choosing when to speak and when to be silent.

In some sense speaking, can be somewhat of a habit, and for the practitioner, one that needs to be corrected. Practicing silence can help to bring that mindset into place. Going for long periods of time without making a sound, and making that apart of integral practice will help to condition the mind into this mindfulness. However overall the key in this important concept is awareness, both internally and externally. Silence helps to increase this awareness and with a conditioned mind, we can be aware of our words before we cast them and be aware of the weight of the words others cast. Truly this is a small yet important step on the practice of Galdr.