Worship in a godswood is centered on heart trees , which are great weirwood trees with a face carved into the bark.
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Weirwoods are considered sacred in the religion, and heart trees are the closest thing to a "shrine" that it possesses. Oaths and promises sworn in front of a heart tree are considered binding.
The wildlings believe that the Gods can be heard in the sounds of nature, such as the wind, and that they can see through the eyes of the weirwood trees. So long as the trees remain in the land, the Gods have power.
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They also believe that the Gods hear their prayers and that they answer by sending the wind or through other means. The faith of the Old Gods is personal and less structured than other religions, though some basic social violations are proscribed by it, such as kinslaying , incest , and bastardy. It also upholds the laws of hospitality , far more so than any other religion.
Unlike their newer counterparts, The Faith of the Seven, the Old Gods demand very little from their followers; in the words of Ned Stark to his wife Catelyn, a follower of the Seven, it's "[her] gods with all the rules". Though extremely offended by the crimes of kinslaying, incest and violation of the guest right, homosexuality is apparently not considered sinful or blasphemous. A weirwood face among the statues of gods from many religions kept in the House of Black and White in Braavos. In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, though the Faith of the Seven generally supplanted the Old Gods, the latter is worshipped by the northmen, crannogmen, and the free folk.
There are exceptions in both cases, however. There are still several major and minor Houses in southern Westeros that worship the Old Gods, mostly in the Riverlands but fading out further away from the North. The biggest example is House Blackwood , one of the major noble Houses of the Riverlands, which continues to worship the Old Gods. Throughout the rest of Westeros one might find a scattered assortment of lesser Houses or even individual families who still keep to the Old Gods, tucked away in isolated places like mountain ranges, etc.
Gods of the North Recorded live at the world premiere on May 12th, Grimes and captured in analog on tape by Tom Moore. A Word from the Composer: Gods of the North was a epic saga to realize and an absolute thrill to see come to fruition. I've always loved mythology, and while Greek myth has always achieved more popularity, ever since I was a small child I felt a special affinity for the tales of the ancient Norse.
Getting the chance to write for my alma mater's top ensemble gave me the chance to put those old tales into music. I hope you enjoy Gods of the North. Program Notes: 1. Odin Odin, also known as the "Allfather", is the ruler of Asgard, the realm of the gods.
Gods of the North
Odin is frequently depicted as a god of war, intellect, and mysticism, and is served by two ravens, Huginn mind and Muninn memory , through which he watches over Midgard our realm. Beginning with a more contemplative moment, the piece depicts the ravens' daily reconnoiter, as Odin's theme is stated by a solo horn.
Unfortunately, his raven companions bear ill tidings that bring Odin's more warlike qualities into play, and he prepares for bloody conflict, arming himself with his magic spear, Gungnir, and accompanied by the barks of his wolves, Geri and Freki. Frigg Frigg is Odin's wife, queen of the gods, and highest-ranked amongst the goddesses in the Norse pantheon.
She is the only other individual permitted to sit upon Hlidskjalf, the high seat from which Odin watches over the world. A goddess of considerable power, she is a master of diplomacy, able to convince her husband to that her wishes are his, and goes so far as to obtain oaths of protection from all things to ensure her son, Baldr, is safe from harm. Alas, due to Loki's trickery, Baldr is killed, sending Frigg into mourning.
Beasts of Olympus 7: Gods of the North
Frigg's theme was written in imitation of the droning cadence of an ancient nordic bowed instrument called the tagelharpa, even as the middle section depicts a funereal chant for her lost son. A brief outburst of anger is leveled towards the subject of the next movement before relaxing into a controlled placidity, befitting the queen of Asgard.
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