Wayland the Other Smith

Over on Galina Krasskova’s blog, Gangleri’s Grove, she’s announced that the month of February will be devoted to discussion of Wayland the Smith. I’m looking forward to seeing what sorts of lore she rounds up for the month, even if Wayland is not the aspect of the Maker I work with.

I’m pretty agnostic when it comes to the subject of syncretic gods. I definitely don’t believe in the “all gods are one god, all goddesses are one goddess” philosophy that’s fairly common in paganism. On the other hand, I don’t think every name mentioned in myth or folklore is a distinct individual, either. It makes sense that some gods would be worshipped under different names in different areas, especially when the motifs of the stories are similar.

Since I started working with Ilmarinen, however, I have been paying attention to stories of smiths in other cultures. Wayland is one of the big names, I guess you could say – when Kipling wrote about you, you qualify as well-known.

I’ve seen Ilmarinen listed in accord with Weyland on the Waincraft article about the Maker archetype and I can say that the association does make sense. One thing Ilmarinen and Wayland have in common in contrast to, say, Vulcan is that they are described as much or more as culture heroes as they are gods. (The only answer I’ve ever gotten about How That Works is a hearty It’s Complicated so I try not to worry about it too much.)

So I’ll be keeping an ear out this month to see what she has to say. It’ll be interesting if for no other reason than to see what else is out there on the subject of smithing gods.

Speaking of which, the feast day of St. Brigid’s just passed, another smithing deity and the only goddess of the smith I can think of off the top of my head. Does anybody reading know of any off the top of your head? Brigid was one of my favorite saints when I was Catholic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.