We’ve all heard the tale of Ragnarok, the end of times where the universe and all life within each of the nine worlds are destroyed. The story of Ragnarok dates back to before the whispers of Christianity came to Europe. Yet, history does not tell us how the story began. Can you hear the call? The call of the deep history to remember your past. Remember the realm that you once called home. Remember your inner persona that you once were, and go back into battle that led you to the halls of Valhalla.
The adventure that gave you the honor to be in Valhalla, do you remember it? Do you remember Thyri, the daughter of Thor? Let us begin this journey once again as we remember the tale of Ragnarok.
Ragnarök is a Norse term that describes the end times when the universe is destroyed, along with all life in each of the nine worlds. The term Ragnarök is derived from an Old Norse word meaning "fate of the gods" or "twilight of the gods." The story of Ragnarök existed long before the spread of Christianity to Europe.
Valhalla , is the anglicised name for Valhǫll ("hall of the slain").It is described as a majestic hall located in Asgard and presided over by the god Odin. Half of those who die in combat enter Valhalla, while the other half are chosen by the goddess Frejya to reside in Fólkvangr.The masses of those killed in combat (known as the Eingerjar ) , live in Valhalla until Ragnőrok when they will march out of its many doors to fight in aid of Odin against the jőtnar.
Yggdrasil (is an immense tree that sprang forth in the primordial void of Ginnungagap, unifying the 9 worlds,)The branches of Yggdrasil reach far into the heavens, supported by three roots that extend to the well of Urðarbrunnr, the spring of Hvergelmir and the well of Mímisbrunnr. The Norns, female entities who spin the threads of fate draw the waters from Urðarbrunnr which they pour over Yggdrasil. The stags Dáinn, Dvalinn, Duneyrr and Duraþrór continually feed on the tree, but its vitality persists evergreen as it heals and nourishes the vibrant aggression of life.On the topmost branch sits an eagle, the beating of its wings causes the winds in the world of men. At the foot of the tree dwells the great serpent Niðhǫggr, gnawing at the roots whilst the squirrel Ratatoskr journeys back and forth with insults and messages
Midgard, is a realm inhabited by a race known as humans, surrounded by an impassable ocean encircled by the great sea serpent Jörmungandr. The god’s of Asgard journey to Midgard via the Bifröst, a burning rainbow bridge that ends in heaven at Himinbjörg, the residence of the god Heimdallr.According to the Eddas (Icelandic literary works), Midgard will be destroyed at Ragnarök, the battle at the end of the world. Jörmungandr will arise from the ocean, poisoning the land and sea with his venom and causing the sea to rear up and lash against the land. The final battle will take place on the plane of Vígríðr, where Midgard and almost all life on it will be destroyed and sink beneath the waves. In the aftermath, Midgard will rise again, fertile and green in a new creation cycle.
Alfheim, is loosely translated as “Land of the Elves” or “Elfland” and as the name suggests, is home of the Jósálfar light elves ruled by the Goddess Freya. Text describing Álfheim is scarce, but the elves themselves have been mentioned in poem as more “”. may suppose that their homeland was a gracious realm of light and beauty. Although the realms that comprise the Nine worlds of the Norse cosmology are never listed, it seems highly probable that, given the prominence of the elves in Germanic religion, Alfheim was one of them.
The Vanir god Freyja is said to be the ruler of Alfheim.
Asgard, is the home of the Æsir, a ruling class of deities that includes Odin, Frigg and Thor. Snorri Sturluson writes that (“Asgard is a land more fertile than any other, blessed also with a great abundance of gold and jewels.”)The world Is surrounded by an incomplete wall, attributed to a stone mason that Thor struck down when the gods learned he was a Hrimthurs in disguise. Asgard is also the location of Valhalla “hall of the slain”, an enormous feasting hall ruled over by Odin. In Valhalla, the dead join the masses of those who have died in combat known as “Einherjar” as they prepare to aid Odin during the events of Ragnarök.
Vanaheim, Little is known about Vanaheim, other than it is the home of the Vanir, a group of gods associated with fertility, wisdom, and the ability to see the future. After the Æsir–Vanir War, the Vanir became a subgroup of the Æsir. Subsequently, members of the Vanir are sometimes also referred to as members of the Æsir.
Niflheim, translated as “Abode of Mist” or “Mist World” is a realm of primordial ice and one of the first to emanate out of Ginnungagap in the creation story of the Yggdrasil tree. The word “Niflheim” is only found in the works of Snorri and in the Hrafnagaldr Óðins.
Muspelheim, is a realm of fire and was the first elemental world to emanate from the primordial void of Ginnungagap. The world is ruled by Surtr, a jötunn giant who plays a major role during the events of Ragnarök where the flames that he brings will engulf Midgard.
Helheim, was the subterranean dwelling place of the dead. Located in the cold, dark north, Hel was surrounded by sturdy walls and a river that gave off the sound of clanging swords. Some sources have claimed that Hel was located within the realm of Niflhel or Niflheim (“the place of mists”). depicted the realm as a place where the dead carried on as they had in life, others suggested it was a bleak, horrifying place. In the Norse imagination, Hel was located on the lowest branch (or possibly beneath the roots) of the world tree Yggdrasil. Despite its remote location, Hel was frequently visited by gods and mortals alike. Hel’s name was taken directly from the Old Norse “Hel,” meaning “hidden.” Its name may have been a reference to its remote, subterranean location. The realm was sometimes referred to as “Helheim,” meaning “place of Hel,” or perhaps “hidden place.” Norse tradition, Hel was described as both the underworld and the final destination of the dead. Though later traditions described Odin's Hall Valhalla and Freyj’s field of Fólkvangr as the resting places of fallen warriors, Helheim was consistently presented as the final destination for the vast majority of souls, including those who died violently
Svartalfheim/Niðavellir, translates as “new moon” or “the wane of the moon” and is the realm of the Dwarfs, a race of master smiths and craftsmen who reside underground working the mines and forges. descriptions of Svartalfheim, however, are much more confused. For one thing, he – and only he – calls the dwarves “black elvs” (svartálfar or døkkálfar).While the boundaries between the different kinds of demigod-like beings were quite blurry in the Viking Age, Snorri’s terminology just introduces an additional and unnecessary layer of complication. The name “Svartalfheim” is an extension of his invented terminology.
Apparently based on a misunderstanding of the stanza in Völuspá, Snorri says that “Sindri” is the name of the dwarves’ hall. Snorri also includes Sindri and Nidavellir in his Christian-influenced descriptions of the Norse afterlife and the apocalypse, adding yet another layer of unnecessary confusion.
Jötunheimr is the homeland of the Jötnar, the giants in Norse mythology. In the Eddas the realm is described as having dark forests and mountain peaks where winter never eases its frosty grip. It was here in Jötunheimr that Odin sacrificed an eye in exchange for wisdom at the well of Mímisbrunnr. known as Utgard (pronounced “OOT-guard;” Old Norse Útgarðr, “Beyond the Fence”), a name which establishes the realm as occupying one extreme end of the traditional conceptual spectrum between the innangard and the utangard . That which is innangard (“inside the fence”) is orderly, law-abiding, and civilized, while that which is utangard (“beyond the fence”) is chaotic, anarchic, and wild. This psychogeography found its natural expression in agrarian land-use patterns, where the fence (the “gard” or garðr of the above terms) separated pastures and fields of crops from the wilderness beyond them. In fact, the very word “wilderness” comes from a Germanic language, Old English, where the word formed from the roots wild-deor-ness literally means “the place of self-willed beasts.” One would therefore expect the cosmological Utgard/Jotunheim to be symbolized as a vast, mighty wilderness that surrounds a more civilized world.
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