Folklore, Stories, Weekly Features

The Weekly Shaman

By Chris Friend

In Russia Morozko or Father Frost was considered responsible for the more intense winter storms and cause snow to fall. Whatever he touches with his staff immediately freezes. Father Frost can raise or lower the temperature. His daughter is the Snow Queen. In a classic Russian fairy tale, an evil woman sends her stepdaughter out into the wilderness, assuming Father frost will kill her with his frozen staff. Instead, Father Frost finds the maiden so sweet and polite that she spares her life. He even bestows her with the gift of magic. When she returns with her magical abilities the wicked stepmother decides to send out her biological daughter to the same wooded area in hopes that she too will get the gift of magic. But she is so spoiled and demanding that Morozko lets her freeze to death. The Frost Father can be called upon to make it snow or help someone find safety from the snow. The presence of the Frost Father can be felt with the cracking of ice or the snapping of the tree branches under the weight of the snow. His icy scepter is so powerful that it will freeze any mortal who touches it to death. It should be noted that some version of Morozko have him being a Santa Clause like figure who rides about with his daughter bestowing gifts on New Year’s Day. But like some of the darker Santa Clause like figures he rewards the good and punishes the bad likely freezing them with his frozen staff. And So, The Story Goes.