Saturday, February 28, 2015

and the gods speak in many ways..

Odin - God of the Norse

(Ilustración de 1886 de Odín por Georg von Rosen)

Odin is considered the chief god in Norse mythology and the ruler of Asgard.  His name means "fury, excitation," "mind," or "poetry." His role, like many of the Norse gods, is complex. He is considered a principal member of the Aesir (Norse Pantheon) and is associated with wisdom, war, battle, and death,and also magic, poetry, prophecy, victory, and the hunt.

Support for Odin as a latecomer to the Scandinavian Norse pantheon can be found in the Sagas where, for example, at one time he is thrown out of Asgard by the other gods — a seemingly unlikely tale for
a well-established "all father." Scholars who have linked Odin with the "Death God" template include E. A. Ebbinghaus, Jan de Vries and Thor Templin. The later two also link Loki and Odin as being one-and-the-same until the early Norse Period.

Odin is attributed with discovering the runes (he letters in a set of related alphabets known as runic alphabets, which were used to write various Germanic languages before the adoption of the Latin alphabet and for specialised purposes thereafter.) He was hung from the world tree, Yggdrasil, while pierced by his own spear for nine days and nights, in order to learn the wisdom that would give him power in the nine worlds. Nine, being a significant number in Norse magical practice (there were, for example, nine realms of existence), thereby learning nine (later eighteen) magical songs and eighteen magical runes.

Odin has a number of magical artifacts associated with him: the spear Gungnir, which never misses its target; a magical gold ring (Draupnir), from which every ninth night eight new rings appear; and two ravens Huginn and Muninn (Thought and Memory), who fly around Earth daily and report the happenings of the world to Odin in Valhalla at night. He also owned Sleipnir, an octopedal horse, who was given to Odin by Loki, and the severed head of Mímir, which foretold the future. He also commands a pair of wolves named Geri and Freki, to whom he gives his food in Valhalla since he consumes nothing but mead or wine. From his throne, Hlidskjalf (located in Valaskjalf), Odin could see everything that occurred in the universe. The Valknut (slain warrior's knot) is a symbol associated with Odin. It consists of
three interlaced triangles.

Odin is an ambivalent deity. Old Norse (Viking Age) connotations of Odin lie with "poetry, inspiration" as well as with "fury, madness and the wanderer." Odin sacrificed his eye (which eye he sacrificed is unclear) at Mímir's spring in order to gain the Wisdom of Ages. Odin gives to worthy poets the mead of inspiration, made by the dwarfs, from the vessel Óð-rœrir.

Odin is associated with the concept of the Wild Hunt, a noisy, bellowing movement across the sky, leading a host of slain warriors.

No comments:

Post a Comment