Dire Wolves Within

odin5Well, literally, a “dire wolf” is a giant wolf that is now extinct. Thousands of fossils of it have been found primarily in North America, as a fact, producing evidence of its existence…

It appears since the name “dire wolf” was given to actual prehistoric giant wolves, occasionally writers used the name to distinguish the references in ancient European literature to the giant wolves being described verses the common wolves we know and experience today.

The reason I bring it up is due to these ancient European references to it. The resources I have read of ancient Europe refer consistently to the existence of giant wolves that became woven into the myth and lore of our ancestors. For instance, these wolves were big enough to ride, and certain females of unusual stature rode them to the terror of those around them, such as the giantess “Hyrokin.”

It was also said that the god of our ancestors, Odin, had two wolves, Geri and Freki, by name. These were his constant companions. It says that He never ate meat, but always gave it to his wolves. They were his guardians and friends… never tied but always at his side. However, their names mean, “Greed” and “Gluttony.” This is where “myth” enters into it.
“Myth,” as a word, is often used today as if something is not true. People say, “Oh, that’s just a myth!” When in ancient times, “myth,” did not mean something “not true,” but just the opposite. Instead, “myth” meant “symbolic truth.” That is, using “pictures” rather than “a thousand words” to present a complicated, but true idea. So they used myth freely to express ideas and “truths” not easily communicated with words. For instance, look up the word “good” in the dictionary and it will tell you it came from the word “god.” That is all the word “god” meant in ancient Europe, “good.” The “good” within was the “god” within and vice versa. The “god” of nature, was the “good” of nature, and so on.

So mythically speaking, the “good” within, also has two “wolves” defending “good” and being loyal to it keeping those who would attack “good” at bay. These “wolves” however, mythically refer also to the consuming hungers and cravings we have within that need to be fed or they get out of hand… In fact, the same lore says that in the end, “god” is killed and eaten by a Dire Wolf or giant wolf, named Fenris, who grew from a pup into a Werewolf of sorts that possessed intelligent but ravenous thought and speech. Often people do let their cravings consume their life, their “good” life. So our inner “wolves” can be our loyal friends that give us the drive in battle we need to win. Or they can grow to take on a life of their own, turn and destroy the “good” in us by our unchecked greed or gluttony.

I find it interesting to also notice the word “dire” in the name. “Dire” in English can mean both “desperate” and potentially “disastrous” (See: Webster’s).  So a Dire Wolf would connote a foreboding disastrous craving that may behave so simply from becoming desperate. So we must be sure to feed them… occasionally… to keep them from becoming naughty.
This brings up another point. The word “naughty” comes from the name of ancient “rune” called “naudhiz.” You may have heard of the “runes” in movies like “the Lord of the Rings” etc. They were symbolic idea-grams used to “magically” focus powers of the will and mind, as well as, unlock the mysteries of thought and memory within. Nevertheless, “naudhiz” was the rune representing “need.” So since “naughty” comes from “naudhiz,” then really, “naughty” just means “needy.” And isn’t that true? When we get too “needy” we tend to do things that are “naughty” to meet those needs. “Naughty” isn’t really “bad” or “evil,” but more “embarrassing” because of some uncontrollable desire we ultimately give in to, even though we know others will not openly approve (though secretly they often feel naughty themselves). Even animals will get “naughty” if they are not fed or allowed to breed… We all need to feed occasionally… We all need to breed occasionally…
Just a thought, or thoughts, for consideration of your connection and companionship with the wolf. It very possibly represents more than just a mere pet, but helps you identify with something very primal and hungry within, yet loyal beyond any human when well fed. Hence, this explains my attraction to “divine-animals” rather than humans. Some are. Some aren’t. I look for those who are. But that is another story…
Have a well fed day just in case you’re feeling naughty…

-Gothi Andrew Webb

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