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Stang - Building a personal World Tree - Part 1

This is my design for how to build a stang to connect to the 9 worlds of Norse mythology. It has one rung per world, and is a 3 dimensional model of the World Tree, also known as the shaman's ladder. It is used both to journey and to communicate with the 9 worlds.

I needed the stang to be small enough to fit on a small table or altar, and be portable. This stang can be entirely folded, and is sized to fit inside a large suitcase. I show here the undecorated model, so its construction is clearer.

Check out The World Tree in your back yard on Raven's site for more information on the decoration and usage of a stang. Being portable, I brought it to some worshops I've presented at Pagan events, and made this page at the request of people asking how to build a stang like mine.

Part 2 will be about how mine was decorated and fed.

Stang world tree shaman's ladder constructionStang making your own world tree

Stang, completely folded for transport. It still folds with the charms that hang from each rung, as long as they're not too close to the inner end of the rung.

Folding stang, foldable 3d model of the world tree

Top view of the stang, resembles a St-Bridget's cross or sun symbol. That was intentional.

Stang, shaman's ladder top view

Each wedge was cut to fit the exact size of the rung that fit in it, so each one would be snug and not move up or down when tightened.

A long bolt goes through, with washers on each side and a wing nut to allow fast and easy loosening and tightening.

As you can see, most of the bolt is smooth, so it doesn't damage the soft pine wood. Only the end is threaded

Stang, assembly of rungs

This is the arrangement of the worlds, according to Raven Kaldera's
book " Pathwalker's Guide to the Nine Worlds."

Stang 9 worlds map

Definition of Stang:

Stang \Stang\, n. [OE. stange, of Scandinavian. or Dutch origin; cf. Icelandic. stöng, akin to Danish. stang, Swedish. stång, German. stange, Old High German. stanga, Anglos-Saxon. steng; from the root of English. sting.]
1. A long bar; a pole; a shaft; a stake, a rod

2. In land measure, a pole, rod, or perch. [Obs. or Prov. Eng.] --Swift.

To ride the stang, to be carried on a pole on men's shoulders. This method of punishing wife beaters, etc., was once in vogue in some parts of England.

Stang \Stang\, v. i. [Akin to sting; cf. Icelandic stanga to prick, to goad.]
To shoot with pain. [Prov. English.]


What's the right size for a stang?

My stang was meant to be portable, to the point where I could take it on a plane. I measured the edge inside my largest suitcase, with a little extra clearance, and that was the size of the central shaft.

I was going to Iceland, and wanted the central staff to be blessed by the energies at Thingvellir there. That place is a crack where the continental plates meet, and also where the world's first parliament met. It's the closest place I could find to Ginnungagap, the great void out of which the World Tree grows. Thus my stang needed to fit in that suitase.


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