The Way of Wyrd tells the magical tale of Brand, a Christian scribe who “finds his vision of the world turned upside down” when he encounters the spirit world of Wulf, a sorcerer, and shaman.
In the book, you walk side-by-side with Brand as he’s guided, hunted, threatened and instructed in the magical lore of plants, runes, fate and the way of Wyrd.
Wyrd is the unfolding of our personal destiny. It has sometimes been translated into modern English as ‘fate’. But it is much deeper than that. It does not see our lives as ‘pre-determined’. Rather, it is an all-encompassing view which connects us to all things, thoughts, emotions, events in the cosmos as if through the threads of an enormous, invisible but dynamic web. Today, scientists know intellectually that all things are interconnected. But the power of Wyrd is to realize this in our inner being, and to know how to use it to manifest our personal destiny.Brian Bates
The author Brian Bates is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Brighton, Director of the Shaman Research Program at the University of Sussex, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. The novel is fiction but constructed from historical research.
One favorite passage in the book is about living like a warrior. When Brand witnesses a fight to the death and is struggling to come to terms with it, Wulf tells him:
The finest warriors use death as a resource, for they must live with their wits all the time, whereas for most people life is based on the assumption that they will live to an old age. With the illusion of time to spare, their lives lack urgency, intensity. A life of fantasy takes over like a fungus. Thoughts become clouded with images of future events and the actions and emotions of the moment are postponed indefinitely.
The warrior must accept, deep within his heart, that one day he will be dead and that day could be today. The greatest fighters live as an arrow, not a target. The arrow speeds through space cleanly, swiftly, directly; alive and moving, it has direction and an end point, but in between it soars. The target merely stays still, waiting for something to happen.
The Way of Wyrd is a fascinating journey into a shaman’s world, where spirit guides and hunts of power become real.