Jarl Hakon is one of those rare men who, by the sheer force of will changed history. Hakon was a strong practitioner of the old ways and likely an Odinn’s man. After Hakon’s father was burned alive by the grandsons of Harald Fairhair he vowed revenge and set about seeing that those responsible would pay dearly. Hakon was able to kill the grandson responsible and also, with the aid of the king of Denmark, to gain the jarldom of western Norway. Immediately upon his gaining power in Norway, Hakon began rebuilding the old temples and holy sites and encouraged the worship of the Gods again undoing much of what Fairhair and his family had done for Christianity.

Eventually Hakon was called upon to come to the aid of his Danish ally against Emperor Otto II of Germany. The ensuing war did not go well for the Scandinavians and it happened that Hakon was forcibly baptized and ordered to convert Norway back to Christianity. He was given a ship to sail home filled with priests of the desert faith. Hakon sailed out away from the shore and forced every priest off his ship. From there he sailed to islands off the coast of Sweden and gave blot to Odinn as ravens flew overhead.

After this great omen Hakon returned to Norway and repelled the incoming invasion. Now he was able to rule in peace for some time and continue his revival of the ancestral ways unhindered by outside influences.

Men like Hakon are rare, but each of us has the ability to change our immediate surroundings or, at the very least, change our perception of those surroundings. Hakon took misfortune and turned it into fuel to drive him to achieve great things. We too have that ability, we can decide how we react to things and how we deal with things. We can rise to the occasion or we can slink off and hide in the shadows. As Asatruar I dare say the only real option for us is to rise up. Asatruar -real sons and daughters of the Gods- do not hide in the shadows or slink off anywhere! We, like Hakon, must always stand tall and proud.

Hail Jarl Hakon Sigurdsson!!!

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