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Ansuz and Anwei

Ansuz and Anwei

A friend and an expert in the field of ancient linguistics (PIE) gives some insight on the more precise meaning of the rune “Ansuz,” as understood by the Proto-Indo-European speaking peoples:

The prevailing form of the word depicts a rune representing the mouth of rivers, a god, or Óðinn himself. But, to peer into the deeper layer of Ansuz comes from the words that assisted in its reconstruction.

It’s first recorded instance was by Alcuin, the Gothic word Aza, which gives us the word Ahsa; an axis, beam or pillar. The root Ahs, gives the meaning of an ear of grain. This root also holds a myriad divergences. The most notable, is in its initial meaning as mind or intellect. This yields the following words, all relating to the soundness of mind in Gothic:

• ahei – sense

• ahjan – mean

• ahma – spirit

• ahmeins – intelligence

• ahmeins – spiritual

Branching off from the h₂eḱs or hᵉéḱs root in Proto-Indo-European, the axis plays a key role in the religious dynamic of the Germanic element. As the objects of worship, these godpoles are imbued with the power of mediation between the divine and man – the axis mundi.

Jordanes, the scribe of Getica, held that the semi-divines worshiped by the Thervingi were hailed as the Anses, and engendered their people – they were the ancestors.

The tie-in to the concept of the Anwei (the spirit of the lineage) is obvious, though it continues to surprise me how many layers emerge from these concepts long after stumbling upon them. I had linked connection to the Anwei with longevity and happiness, and fulfillment of one’s purpose in life, but the link to sanity and soundness of mind — though intuitive with hindsight — was something I had missed. I am increasingly feeling either stupid in luck or else guided by something else, for all the times I have asserted something without sound justification (though I did not understand my ignorance at the time), only to be vindicated later… and in that vindication, coming to understand my ignorance before.

In any case, I highly recommend following Clinton’s work. He is a serious scholar, where paganism and Proto-Indo-European languages are concerned, and I expect more high quality work will be coming from him over the coming years.

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