Weard-gework; just what do I mean? It's my Gewessi view of the discipline of action; working wyrd. I was listening to an old OBOD Druidcast (number 46 I think) where the lady talking mentioned that only those who have a daily focus to their spiritual practice seem to reap the deep spiritual gnosis and she prefers their company
This daily practice concept is one that is common to all work that brings long term benefit. On Velominati, a road cycling fan site that I'm over-fond of, it's called La Vie Velominati; the life as a road cyclist. http://www.velominati.com/
In Yoga it's called Karma Yoga and is thus an ancient spiritual practice - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karma_yoga
Much of my pagan work is done inside, the British weather is not always conducive to outside work, but the true Weard-gework is outside and involves physical effort. Perhaps it's the combination of adrenalin and endorphins with the patterns of nature that, for me, brings benefit to my spirit.
An example occurred this weekend – a combination of a virus, the weather being very wet and Yuletime festive commitments meant I'd not been on my bike much. I'd been 2 weeks without MTBing. Which, in my head, is a long time and doubts start to gnaw at my soul, much like Nidhogg gnaws the roots of Yggdrasil. Am I still a biker? Am I getting too old? How much will it hurt to get back into the rhythm? Is my chest well enough to ride? The belittling nagging madness that is sometimes my negative-mind chatter.
I pumped up the tyre (I must replace that slow leaky inner-tube) and got on my winter soul bike. Three gears with the fourth gear option of shank's pony; walking. I headed out into the grey dreariness and past Blackstone. My body was complaining, legs aching in the way they do when they've been unused for a while. Then hit the off-road and the first muddy bog. As my foot sunk into the sodden clay the laughter bubbled up. Frige is my mud-goddess and in the winter we play whilst waterproof socks keep me dry. Skipping, or attempting to skip, over each mudhole in the trail I practice the mount and dismount of the bike and I don't care that I'm no cyclo-crosser. I'm outside and the tree lined trail is marvellous. I feel the energy poised in the leaf tips for the spring explosion. The Oak King is born and the birds are singing.
As I approach the hills a gap in the grey clouds appears and a hint of blue sky! My hope for sunshine on the top of the Downs briefly takes wing. Then there's the climb ahead of me. The Edge of the World is the path up. Certainly not rideable, even in the best of conditions, for a mortal like myself. I grab the bike and start the push& trudge up the steep, claggy wall upwards. I'm settling into the rhythmic pain of climbing, a familiar pain as calves and back ache. Near the top I feel an energy pulling me and my spirit soars – two trees lovingly entwined. An Elder and a Hawthorn I'd never noticed the two of them before. I spent a moment with them and moved up into the fog.
My hope of sunshine had been dashed but the fog enfolded me like a chilly blanket. I know this land so well 50 yards visibility is more than enough. I leap-frogged some women runners over the next couple of rises until just before the final climb they asked me how to get back to Portslade. I discussed where they expected to get back and divined the route for them. Riding up to Devils Dyke and down to Saddlescombe I then play gate opening leap-frog with another MTB'er. Discovering that he lived near to me but was going to take the road as he didn't know another route. My turn as navigator or trail-seer had come again. I took him over the next hill and pointed him home.
The nidhogg of mind silenced in the land-boon of spirit. True weard-gework.