Deck By Stacey Demarco
Artwork by Jimmy Manton
Seek equality in your relationships, especially intimate relationships. Avoid people pleasing and co-dependence. Family and work harmony is paramount. You will be acknowledged for your fine work and your good deeds. A gift will be matched. There is natural justice that runs through life ~ this will be upheld.
We agree to union,
One that is sacred and equal,
Side by side.
A gift is given,
Circles back in kind.
Harmony is won,
Justice is invited.
I am Gebo.
According to Viking lore, marriages and other unions were created under vows made to the gods. The meeting of souls in these sacred unions was not taken lightly. There were expectations on both sides. Harmony in marriage, equality in provisionary duties and parity in kinship roles all were valued by the Norse people. Even the gods were called upon to provide guidance and protection in return for the worship, sacrifice and honour they received.
While as modern people, we may not relate completely to the ethical standards of the Vikings, we must understand that, in lieu of sophisticated court systems, they held to a process of justice and judgment that was weighted on the severity of the transgression. Gebo (pronounced “gay-boo”) reflects this balance. What was ‘given’ to someone, be it positive or negative, was expected to be returned. So, if a host received their guest with hospitality, providing them with food, drink, shelter and safety, all this was given with the expectation that the host would receive equal hospitality one day. Or, at the very least, that their guess would respond by being trustworthy. On the other hand, if someone acted with cunning and trickery or destroyed another’s property, this too would be repaid in kind.
Gebo also asks us to heed the laws of nature and find harmony with them. If we humans work as a part of nature not apart from nature, there are countless benefits to be had, not the least being improvements in our own mental and physical health and the sustainability of our planetary resources.
Gebo as Challenger: Remember, regarding the nature of gifts, if the gift is not of good intent, this will be returned in kind to you. There may be falsity in someone’s generosity. Justice will be done. If you have been on the side of injustice, justice will be done and wrongs righted.