Thursday, February 23, 2012

Odin-Father of the Gods


Odin was Married to Frigg and their family inclduded, Baldur, Hod, Hermoth, Thor and Vidar. Together they were the chief divinity of the Norse pantheon, the foremost of the Aesir. 

Odin had to put himself through some very rigorous ordeals to become the great God that he was. One of these ordeals included the sacrifice of one of his eyes. Mimir was an ancient being noted for his wisdom. Mimir was the guardian of a sacred well (known as Mimir’s Well) that gave knowledge to those who drank from it. Odin so coveted wisdom that he gave up one of his eyes to Mimir to gain the privilege of drinking from the well. Mimir placed the eye in the well, where it shone as brilliantly as the Moon.

The well of wisdom lied under the second root of Yggdrasil, which allowed the Dew of Knowledge to seep into it. So Odin stabbed himself with his own spear and hung himself on the tree for nine days and nights. He was then allowed a peep, and saw magic runes appear on rocks beneath him.With a superhuman effort he lifted them and running his eye over the mystic symbols, he was instantly freed of all encumbrances. Restored and rejuvenated with everlasting vigour he droped lightly to the ground. His ordeal accomplished, Odin was at last able to drink from Mimirs well, making him the wisest of all.

Odins self-sacrifice gave him knowledge of the runes, the Norse symbols used for writing and fortune-telling. Yet although Odin was wise, he could also be sly and treacherous. It was not unusual, for example, for him to break his word or to turn people against each other to start conflicts.

Odin's attributes were the spear Gungnir, which never missed its target, the ring Draupnir, from which every ninth night eight new rings appeared, and his eight-footed horse Sleipnir. He was accompanied by the wolves Freki and Geri, to whom he gave his food for, he only consumed wine or mead.

Odin could make the dead speak in order to question the wisest amongst them. His hall was ├ůsgard and Valaskjalf ("shelf of the slain")  was where his throne Hlidskjalf was located. From this throne he could observe all that happened in the nine worlds. The tidings were brought to him by his two raven Huginn and Muninn. He also resided in Valhalla, where the slain warriors were taken. If you think a wise one-eyed Norse super power on an eight-legged horse would be easy to recognise you would be wrong because one of Odins many talents was that he could shape-change, and travel incognito under a variety of false names and shapes.

Sharing  God status with brothers Ve and Vili, the Great Odin helped bring the world as we know it into being.. The legend tells that in the ice-laden wastes of Nifleheim, he got into an extreme snowball fight with Ymir, the king of the Frost giants. Ymir was slashed into pieces and Odin made the world from all the left over bits and pieces. On the day of the final battle, it is said that Odin will be killed by Lokis pet wolf Fenrir.


Anonymous said...

Today I have learned. lol Nicely done as usual.

Bossy Betty said...

A snowball fight! That's great!

Michael Offutt, Tebow Cult Initiate said...

So I guess I want to ask you now if you enjoyed the movie, "Thor"? I thought that Asgard looked amazing.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Now I wonder how much of the movie was accurate? I guess accurate to the comic, huh?

Susan Kane said...

I loved the "Thor" movie. Asgard and the Rainbow Bridge--great stuff.

McKenzie McCann said...

That makes Odin Thor's brother, right? Interesting.