Another nature shrine, this time a tree. With wooden phalluses and blood sacrifice.
I did a class about archaeology and religion last semester, and I chose to specialize on the European nature shrines (usually springs and stones, but trees as well), so I suppose thats where this came from. The little carved-out goddess on the trunk is supposed to be a fertility deity, what with the phallus and the circle of life aka. vagina. The life pattern is mirrored in the tree itself: one half alive, one dead. Below are the remains of the rituals: human and animal bones, runic amulets and rings nailed to the trunk.
Only the artifacts are 100% authentic in the picture: iron rings were frequently nailed to wooden posts in norse holy places (probably as a way of sealing pacts and treaties). Runes were themselves holy things and therefore associated to magic. Blood sacrifices were also common, particularly during times of strife and sorrow.
Ink and Pencil