Sprung from the translinguistic wisdom of the giant Mimir comes Odin, the wisest of all Viking Gods. Odin has gone by 170 different names during his tenure as one of the mightiest mythological Gods of the Germanic people.
According to parts of his origin story, he visited a giant to drink of a fountain so he’d gain complete wisdom and dominion over the world. He was not allowed to do so until he sacrificed his eye. Odin is well known for only having one eye. His notable lack of stereoscopic vision is covered with a hood during his travels disguised as a mortal. Odin is quite the wanderer. They call him the wanderer, he roams around, around, around…
Just one look at Odin and you’ll be thinking he’s some kind of wizard. You’d be both right and wrong. Odin is the wizard. He’s a proto-wizard from whence all others have derived from.
The Knowledge Seeker Odin
Underneath his great long beard, Odin’s primary pursuit is that for knowledge. He derives knowledge from his runes, another type of early language. It could be said that words are wizardry.
The disguised Odin goes around seeking knowledge amongst mortals. It’s a kind of game to him. His Goddess wife Frigg, makes bets and wagers with him over his exploits and what will come of them. Odin is also responsible for the birth of the first humans too, Ask and Embla, that sounds oddly familiar.
Poetry and the knowledge of runes is both attributed to Odin. There are a lot of ways to spot Odin when he’s in disguise. For one, he’ll never eat when other people are. The Norse god in disguise is a bit of a trickster.
No mega-beard God would be complete without his aptitude and skill for seduction. He is well known for his skill with women. There was a woman named Gunnlada who he wooed with his mead of poetry, she then gave birth to two boys. The boys, Vali and Vidir would become the avenger to the gods.
Odin is usually seen with a couple of animals around him at all times. He has two ravens that sit on his shoulders, Huginn and Muninn. Each day they’re sent all over the world to explore and bring him news. If Odin wants to see through their eyes then he’ll sit at the throne of Hildarskialf, he can see anything in the world from that throne.
He resides in the infamous Valhalla, the place for those slain in battle. It’s one of the most honorable places to end up and that’s where all warriors want to go. The place is a magnificent place, akin to Heaven for the Norse religions. Odin was also associated with the valkyries, women who were overseers of Valhalla that brought warriors to their new home after death in battle. He receives half of them in battle while the goddess Freyja takes the other half to an undisclosed afterlife location.
Possibly one of the most badass things about Odin, is that he knows he exactly how he’s going to die. There is an apocalyptic vision in the Norse religion called Ragnarok. The world as they know it will boil over, when the ultimate battle in Valhalla will commence.
He will lead processions of dead warriors through the great halls side by side into the greatest battle of all time. That is before he is consumed by the great wolf Fenrir. This is the end of days as humans lost their ways and so did the gods.
Odin is an incredible god. His influence is still with us to this day. Our weekday Wednesday actually is derived from the Old English word wōdensdach. The name was related back to Odin and originally meant middle of the week. Oh yeah, he’s also the father of Thor.
Another God of Gods, Odin stands as our Mythological Man of the month.