Friday, 27 April 2012

Northern European Sun and Moon Gods and the Tree of Life

Both the Celts and Vikings had similar views on the Tree of Life. The only difference was the symbols each tribe chose for it. Most of the legends say that the creators or a descendant, sang it into being so he could practice his craft. This would be the invention of the magic of music. The music made the tree (Ash tree for some, and another Viking legend says a Spruce tree topped with flowers leaved in gold.). The top of the tree is in the heavens, scattered everywhere its branches. In the branches, we have the moon gleaming, and a Great Bear protector. The shining stars are the Fruit. And the groupings of stars on each branch are the major constellations and the ones surrounding its trunk(if one were to looking from above and down on the tree like a round slice), are the zodiacal constellations.

The Sun and Moon

All around the world, different cultures had their own explanations for the Moon. Some myths say that beneath the great tree was a well called the Well of Fate, and within a pair of swans were feeding, from whom all swans on earth were descended. The water from this well is so holy, it made all things put into it go pure white. If we look at the surviving story of Yggdrasill, we see a high tree, that is soaked with shining loam and from that comes dew which falls in the valley that is ever green. This Tree stands over a Well of Fate. Now if we find the other myths as symbols of Sky stories then this well would be the Moon. The light of the sun casts into the well makes phases of the moon. The swans as well as a hare with a basket is clearly visible on the moon, if you know how to see it.

The god Odin is but one God in the many myths of Northern Europe where a God has sacrificed or lost one of his eyes at a well of knowledge or wisdom. Also seen as a cauldron. The 'Man in the Moon' with his drinking horn, tipped up so he can imbibe the waters of the well is Mimir and he can also be seen on the face of the moon. Or you can look it instead as Odin receiving the a skull of Heiddraupnir and Hoddrofnir's horn. Again, the stories of the moon depend on the tribe and they all vary. There is no one Norse religion, nor is there no one Celtic religion, nor is there no one 1st Nations religion. And they would roll in their graves at the nonsense that goes on today with new-agers trying to fit all under an umbrella of "Celtic spirituality". Just as a Tribal Cree Chief would be insulted if you thought his bell dance, or ceremony, or God was the same as the Pawnee tribe. You'd be laughed right off the reserve.

For others the Sun was known as Bertha (bright) and was seen as a lovely goddess, while the Moon was called Heimdall, a powerful god who guarded the rainbow bridge that led to heaven.

A large wolf named Fenrir eventually caught Odin, is an eclipse. During these times ancient people would make loud noises, clanging on pots and pans to scare the beast away. Sometimes this wolf is called Moongarm, and his description is "He will fill himself with the lifeblood of everyone that dies, spatter heavens or skies with blood and as a result the sun will lose its shine and winds will then be violent raging to and fro. There is a shape of the front half of a wolf visible on the Moon.

Even nursery rhymes had their origins from images seen in the Moon's face. Jack and Jill were known as Hiuki and Bil in the Scandinavian parts. Others know them asd Jack of the Lantern and Will of the Wisp, the Sun and the Moon. The well is there and you can pretty much guess the rest.

Heimdall, a Moon God, needs less sleep than a bird. He can see, by night just as well as by day, a distance of a hundred leagues. He can also hear grass growing on the earth and wool on sheep and everything that sounds louder than that. He has a trumpet called Giallarhorn (loud horn) and its blast can be heard in all worlds. The head is referred to as Heimdall's sword. The 'Man in the Moon' was the god himself, and its white glow explains why he was known as the white god. The phases of the Moon were explained here not as a well but instead it appears as a crescent, or great horn, Giallarhorn, used to blow a loud call at the end of the world when giants would come to besiege heaven. A quarter-moon it was seen to be the god's bright smile - Gullintanni (means 'shining teeth'), and when it was a half-moon it was thought to be one of his great ears. Heimdall sacrifice is an ear, not an eye, the sliver moon vs. the full moon.

Confusing Real History with Myth

The German deities Bertha, Heimdalli and Lodur (god of fire) were mentioned in the Gallic War of Julius Caesar over two thousand years ago. These were also called Sol, Luna, and Vulcan or Freyia, Heimdall and Loki. Again, depends on the area and tribe.


In conclusion to understand our Pedigree or Family Tree it is now easier to see how our last names and the tribe or clan names were founded and where we are in the tree of life. As we all follow glorious lines of succession to these original Gods, as their children. The fathers or Mothers of mankind is on one of the branches but all stem from the tree.

The writings of the world in this mythology help us understand prehistoric beliefs of Northern Europe. And that the sky and surroundings formed the basis for their gods, Different part of the earth had different energies and thus different Gods but the sky gods are similar in every single culture.

By Brahva Cwmevos
Copyright April 2nd, 2012

Brahva Cwmevos
Celtic Chieftain of Neo-Celtic Tribe

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