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05.11.2019

Yggdrasil

In the middle of Asgard, where the Gods and Goddesses lives, is Yggdrasil. Yggdrasil is the tree of life, and it is an eternal green Ash tree; the branches stretch out over all of the nine worlds in Norse mythology, and extend up and above the heavens. Yggdrasil is carried by three enormous roots, the first root from Yggdrasil is in Asgard, the home of the Gods it is just next to the well-named Urd, this is where the Gods and Goddesses have their daily meetings.

The second root from Yggdrasil goes all the way down to Jotunheim, the land of the giants, next to this root is Mimir’s well. The third root from Yggdrasil goes down to Niflheim, close to the well Hvergelmir. It is here the dragon Nidhug is chewing on one of Yggdrasil’s roots. Nidhug is also known to suck the blood out of the dead bodies, that arrives at Hel. At the very top of Yggdrasil lives an eagle, the eagle and the dragon Nidhug are bitter enemies, they truly despise each other. There is a squirrel named Ratatosk, and he spending almost the entire day, by running up and down the ash tree.

Ratatosk does whatever he can, to keep the hatred between the eagle and the dragon alive. Every time Nidhug says a curse or an insult about the eagle, Ratatosk will run up to the top of the tree, and tell the eagle what Nidhug just said. The eagle is equally rude in his comments about Nidhug. Ratatosk just loves to gossip which is the reason why the eagle and the dragon remain constant foes.

Yggdrasil, the Tree of Life, is not only one of the most prominent Viking symbols/Norse symbols but an important element of the Norse faith itself.

According to Norse mythology, Yggdrasil is the Great Tree that connects the nine worlds/nine realms of the universe, namely Asgard, Midgard, Muspelheim, Jotunheim, Vanaheim, Niflheim, Alfheim, Svartalfheim, Helheim.

That is why Yggdrasil is considered the symbol of the interconnectedness of all things in the universe.

Yggdrasil stands in a spring according to the Norse faith which suggests all life comes from water. That is one of the reasons why it is called the Tree of Life.

The second reason is that it is believed for Yggdrasil’s fruits to provide youth for the gods, ‘giving them life’.

According to Norse mythology, the world will end with Ragnarok, a battle between gods with only a man and a woman surviving it by hiding inside the hollow of a tree. The couple will leave the tree to bring life back again to the world.

Although the tree in question is not mentioned specifically or Yggdrasil is not clearly associated with the myth, it is believed by some to be the tree that will protect life from Ragnarok.

 

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