You traded warmth and blood.
It used to have trees, and it is eaten by sheep. A little bit of replanting has been done. Here are some Siberian larches in East iceland, placed in like a quilting block.
One works with what one knows. Everything else is a compromise. Spiritually, as I showed you yesterday, the compromise is between paganism and Christianity. Environmentally, it is between earth before and after settlement. Below is an image of Iceland flowing to sea, which is called the force of wild nature.
Well, yes… wild nature with sheep and shivering humans. Iceland is not an indigenous nation. It is a nation of settlers. Settlement is an ongoing process. It is at the root of the country’s past and future. This is what it looks like.
It also looks like this:
The point is, when you live on a sub-arctic island, and keep sheep, everything is hay, as the Icelanders say, meaning that when the hay runs out in the middle of the winter you will feed your sheep anything — anything — to survive. Even this:
Soooooo, the Danes mine your mountains for sulfur, to make matches, to light their cigars, do they, and pay you in tiny twists of tobacco, for way too long, do they? No problem.Just sell it back to their great grandchildren as nature at it’s purest. Canada and its mining wastelands could learn from this trick! As the old Icelandic saying goes, “everything is hay.” More on that tomorrow!
Elf House, Church, School, Playground. Out of these pillars, the country is built.Þorgeir’s balance from the Þing (the parliament; Þorgeir was the speaker of the house, tasked with deciding the spiritual future of the country) in the winter of 999-1000, in which he decided that the country would be Christian, politically, and either pagan or Christian privately, continues to this day. Intriguingly, the Álfar, “the other people” of pagan tradition, remain hidden. One can see their homes (above, for example), as one could see pagan homes in the Christian Iceland of late 1000, but the pagan content is as hidden now as it was then. But it is OK for children to play there — children who are the foundation of the state. So, it’s not that hidden!
In the time of Gunnar’s youth, 120 years ago, the pile of stones in the middle of this image were the foundation walls of a house large enough to seek shelter in from winter. It was just large enough to lie down in (and shut the door.) The dog could find a place once the door was shut.
A man didn’t live there. He lived outside, in what you can see here. The less time spent inside there, the better. That’s why it’s called “the world,” the space of human habitation.
Yesterday, I surmised that the Nordic eye that is neither thought nor memory, and thus not consciousness, is the body, looking out, and asked what it was that we are looking at with that eye. I suggested vision, a presence of being rendered physical.
If that is what we are looking at, it is quite foreign to the contemporary world. Today, human eyes look out to see the social, at all times.
At any rate, it’s quite different from a human/non-human relationship of being, such as Iceland-outside-of-Reykjavik:
But, here’s the question: is that relationship social, too? But not “social” in terms of human-to-human interactions?
And so, we come, as we seem to always do, to another question: if there is a non-human social relationship, what is it with, or, perhaps better put, what is a human social relationship when it includes non-peoples?
Oðin, the wanderer, threw his eye into the pool at the root of the world tree, to gain wisdom.
The nature of the wisdom a supplicant received was determined by the quality of the gift. For an eye, he got two ravens, Thought and Memory, and what else is consciousness? That’s it, for sure. Here are a few pictures of Thought and Memory in Iceland, to show you how it works.Church, Battery, and Water for Horses.
Sheep and World War II US Army Surplus
Abandoned Cruise Ship and Fish Bins, Lagarfljót
Window Remembering the Sky and Thinking of the Wind
The Cow at the Hamburger Factory, Remembering Its Days as a Reality TV Show
Pretty cool, for sure, but here’s the haunting thing: what is the other eye doing? The one that is not consciousness? This?