When I was young, I was terrified of death. I was an atheist and I didn’t believe that there was anything after death. Sometimes I despaired, thinking what is the point of struggling through life, only for everything to end? I had periods of depression where life seemed meaningless. The thought of death was paralysing.
Then I became a Pagan and I began to believe if reincarnation. It was of some comfort, but I believed that the me that I was in this life would end with death. In my next life I would be someone different, with different lessons to be learned.
I wasn’t sure what the point of reincarnation was. Would there come a point where the soul had learned enough lessons to progress to a higher plane?
Since I was young I have always believed that death was a goddess. I used to call Her “The Dark Lady”. I thought she would be kind, when she came for me.
Then I found Loki, and the other Norse gods.
In the Old Norse Fath, Hel is the goddess of death. There are other deities who have death aspects, like Odin, who takes half of the warriors who died in battle, and Frejya, who takes the other half of the warriors who died in battle. Those who die of disease or old age go to Hel. Hel is both the name of the underworld and of the ruler of this realm.
Hel is the daugther of Loki and the Jotun Angrboda. Her siblings are Fenrir and Jormungand. She is said to have half of Her body be blue or black.
The Æsir had prophecies that great mischief and disaster would come from these Loki’s children, so They were brought to Asgard. Odin cast Jormungand into the great sea, Hel into Niflheim, and the Æsir eventually bound Fenrir.
Hel was given the responsibility of Hel, the realm of the dead, and to look after those who came to Her realm, from all the nine worlds.
I have met Hel four times, and I’ve been in Hel twice.
I have met Hel once in a dream, once in hypnagogia during the pre-dawn of the day, and once when I astral travelled in a trance.
I’ve seen her twice as a beautiful young woman with a normal body. She was very pale and had dark hair gathered in a bun at the back of her neck. She wore a long sleeved dark violet dress that covered her from throat to ankle.
When I officially invited Loki into my life in a dream, He brought Hel with Him. She didn’t speak to me, and Loki didn’t say anything, so I wasn’t sure why She was there. She looked very regal, sitting with a straight back and her hands in her lap. She seemed kind.
The second time I saw Her was in hypnagogia. She came into my bedroom and sat down on the bed beside me and took one of my hands in Hers. She didn’t speak, but She smiled at me. Again I sensed kindness.
The third time I met Her was when I astral travelled to Hel in a meditative trance. I met Her in a hall with a low ceiling, dark grey stone walls and dark wood beams. It was dimly lit from some hidden source. It seemed quite cosy.
This time the left half of Her body was dark and mummified. She looked at me and asked me: “Do you think I am ugly?” I looked at her closely, then I held out my hands to Her and she took them in Hers. I said: “I think you look exotic”, and that was exactly what I felt.
I’m very drawn to Hel, and wish I could meet Her again, before I die.
I slowly stopped fearing death when I was in my thirties. I have come to accept that it’s going to happen, and that I should enjoy my life while I have it.
I’m now nearly fifty, and I have no regrets. I have made peace with myself and what I have experienced so far in my life.
I believe that when I die, I will go to Hel. I think Hel is a a nice and quiet place where the soul can rest before being reincarnated again. I don’t think I’m done being reincarnated on this plane, yet.