Pages

25 Oct 2018

Echo of Odin

Edward W. L. Smith. The Echo of Odin: Norse Mythology and Human Consciousness. McFarland. (30 Oct. 2018)

🔻
The pagan mythology of the Vikings offers a rich metaphor of consciousness. For the first time, the cosmography contained in Norse mythology is presented as a map of human consciousness, a landscape of the soul. Each of the nine worlds of this cosmography is explored as a symbol of a particular type of consciousness, each world emblematic of a particular perspective and way of relating to others. In addition, the individual gods and goddesses of the warrior and the fertility races are considered as nuanced personifications of their worlds.

The parameters of Norse mythology, space, time, and awareness, are revealed through Yggdrasil (the World Tree connecting the nine worlds), the Norns (maidens representing past, present, and future), and the runes respectively. The centrality of the struggle between the giants, as agents of chaos, and the warrior gods is explored within this matrix of extension, duration, and mindfulness. The philosophical core of this pagan mythology is furthered clarified by comparing and contrasting the Sayings of Odin from the Norse Edda with the Christian Ten Commandments that confronted the Vikings. Anyone interested in the psychology of consciousness or Norse mythology will find a wealth of material herein.