Sunday, 9 January 2011
After the great but necessary calamity of Ragnarok there will arise a renewed earth and a new sun and moon. Aryan humanity is destined to survive in the form of the couple Lif[ON `life`] and Lifrasir[ON `the one striving after life] but so are some of the Gods, namely Baldr, Hodr, Hoenir, Magni, Modi, Vidar, Vali and Njord. There is no mention in the Voluspa or the Gylfaginning of any Godesses surviving. Now whether this is intentional or just an oversight I do not know. Of the eight Gods referred to seven are of the Aesir and one of the Vanir-Njord who is said to return to his home of Noatun after Ragnarok. [Vafthrudnismal 39]. Seven is the number that governs occult mysteries. It is a sacred number and signifies the victory of spirit over matter, perfection.
"The Aesir meet on Ida`s plain,
and of the mighty earth-encircler speak,
and there to memory call their mighty deeds,
and the supreme god`s ancient lore"
Woden will live on in the bodies of his sons Vidar and Vali. Woden`s son Thunor will live on in the bodies of his sons Magni and Modi. These two pairs of brothers are third generation Gods.
Magni[ON `the strong one`] is the personification of Thunor`s strength and at the age of just 3 years He rescued Thunor from under the leg of the giant Hrungnir. His mother was the giant Jarnsaxa.
Modi[ON `the angry one`]is the personification of Thunor`s anger. Less is known of Him than His brother Magni.
Magni and Modi will inherit Thunor`s hammer Mjollnir:
"Vidar and Vali will the gods` holy fanes inhabit,
when Surt`s fire shall be quenched.
Modi and Magni will Miollnir possess,
and warfare strive to end."
Vidarr[ON `the wide ruling one`] is known as `the slient God` and with his strong shoe he avenges his father Woden on Fenrir the wolf at Ragnarok. His mother is the giantess Grid who lent Thunor her belt of strength, her iron glove and staff to fight the giant Geirrod.
Vali[ON `little warrior`]avenges the death of His brother Baldr at one day old by killing the blind God Hodr. He was bred specifically for this purpose and His mother Rindr is one of the Asyniur[Godesses].
Hoenir along with Woden and Lodur participated in the creation of Germanic mankind. After the war with the Vanir He was given as a hostage along with Mimir by the Aesir.
Apart from Him the other six Gods are pairs of brothers.
He is the only first generation God to survive Ragnarok and it appears that He will partake of priestly office and divine from the Runes:
"The can Hoenir choose his lot,...."
Hodr[ON `warrior, fighter`], the blind God and the unwitting slayer of His brother Baldr.
Baldr, the second son of Woden and Frigg, the husband of Nanna and the most beloved God of light. Baldr and Hodr represent light and darkness and with their resurrection after Ragnarok they symbolise a return to balance and harmony. These are the only two Gods who are second generation who were killed well before the events of Ragnarok.
Njord is the father of the twins Freyr and Freyja and the husband of the giantess Skadi. His home is Noatun by the sea. He is connected in some way with the more ancient deity Nerthus, a Goddess. He is a God of the wind and sea.
In addition to these eight Gods the Runes[and their knowledge] along with Mjolnir will survive Ragnarok.
When we break down the Gods into the three functions[Dumezil]: sovereignity, warfare and production it is clear that Hoenir occupying the priestly office is a God of the first function. Vidar and Vali being Gods of vengeance and thus warriors and along with Hodr[`warrior, fighter`]occupy the office of the second function.
Magni and Modi possess the hammer which can be used for both waging war and also for blessing married couples and bringing fertility of crops, animals and humans and thus may consider to be occupying the third function.
Baldr, the most loved of the Gods, being a shining God of light I consider along with Hoenir to also occupy the office of the first function but as sovereign and not unlike Hoenir as a priest. The first function originally combined the roles of priest and sovereign which eventually developed into seperate functions amongst certain Indo-European peoples.
Njord as a Van is of course a God of fertility and thus of the third function.
So although the Germanic pantheon is much diminished it is in essence complete and the individual Gods may in the process of time father children either with unnamed Goddesses that may survive Ragnarok or with Aryan humanity who are to be viewed as their `children`.