Science in Scandinavian Mythology; Gravity

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There is one planet in particular in our Solar system that ensures the survival of life as we know it on our planet Earth, and this is of course Jupiter. Had it not been for the gravitational field of this giant planet the surface of our Earth would have been peppered by objects from outer space.

Not named by chance, the planet is called Jupiter, and the deity Jupiter’s Scandinavian name is Þôrr, and he is well known as the god of thunder, but less as a god of agriculture and even less as a god of rain. Thunder brings about rain and rain is as we know (if controlled…) good for the agriculturist.

Þôrr is in Scandinavia commonly called «Þôrr with the Hammer», because he is famous for his special hammer, made to him by the dark elves (=dwarves) in the ground. The hammer was originally a rock, as seen from the etymology of the word hammer, which originally means simply «rock». It always returns to him when he throws it into the air and it can be made so small he can easily just put it into a small pocket or pouch, if he likes to. He is also equipped with a belt that makes him twice as strong, the Meginnjörð («strength of the Earth»).

As you know it is gravity that causes the rain to fall to the ground, that causes rocks to return to your hand when you throw them into the air, and we know that gravity is not linked to the size of an object, but to its mass. So his hammer can be made as small as he wants it to be, without influencing its power. Naturally his belt of strength is then called «the strength of the Earth», because that is basically another name for gravity; the strength of the mass.

In our mythology he is also, naturally, tasked with protecting the world from the stone giants and ice giants, just like the planet Jupiter protects planet Earth from the stone giants and ice giants from outer space – with its gravity. Rather than crash into our planet and destroy all life here the stone and ice giants are sucked into Jupiter, by Jupiter’s gravity.

Ladies and gentlemen, rather than being a god of thunder, rain and agriculture, our dear Þôrr is really first and foremost the god of gravity. This would also explain why Þôrr, as the only god in Scandinavian mythology, has rust-red hair and beard; the planet Jupiter is rust-red.

What else did they know that the Judeo-Christians destroyed before we could found out about it? What has been lost because of them?

270px-Statue_of_Zeus

Roman: Jupiter

Greek; Zevs

Scandinavian; Þôrr

Slavic; Perun

Celtic; Taranis

Baltic; Perkunas

Finnish; Perkele

220px-Перун.1998г.смеш.,тех.,бум.40,5х27,5

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20 thoughts on “Science in Scandinavian Mythology; Gravity

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  6. I’m more than pleased that you have taken notice on finnish vocabulary and our “discrete” relation to other europeans. Please, take notice on these things even more often as we finns are totally lost with our heritage and there’s really no one to write this kind of material.

    But as a matter of fact, “perkele” is a common cussword in finnish, but it isn’t used like a “dirty” word (like english ‘fuck’, almost the same as swedish ‘fittan’ or finnish ‘vittu’ which is the same thing, meaning a female sex organ), as the etymology of the word is unknown; we have no other written knowledge of our past and ancient beliefs than KALEVALA and it tells us nothing about “perkele” as a deity, nor it does not use the word even once.

    As far as I know, the word has been used in finnish christianity as another name for the christian “satan” or “devil”. Kind of perverted, if you think about it.

    For me, ‘perkele’, is more like a power word. It gives that extra boost when for example working out or if I’m totally pissed about something. The word includes so much sharp ‘r’ letters in finnish that it’s a good word when used in a right situation. It’s always sort of naive when some people cuss all the time. Makes me feel like they’re complete idiots.

    • They are either idiots or working class (or more often; both…)

      Yes, Perkele as a power word is very good. Ha ha. The r just gives it that extra edge and makes it sound great.

      In Norway we more often say “Helvete“, with pressure on the l (making it sound like “Hellllvete”), also a fine power word, and this too is originally a Pagan word, meaning simply “Visit to Hel” (death). If we want to add some extra negative power we say “Svarte” (“black”) first… ;-)

      I close to never use these words myself, largely as a protest against their over-use by… well, idiots or working-class individuals (and indeed by everyone from Northern Norway).

      • Haha, yes, I can really understand your enthusiasm on this word and thematic, even in language- and cultural-wise, as ‘perkele’ is, the most powerful-sounding word I personally know (and all my foreign friends too).
        One can always claim that german ‘donnerwetter’ or english ‘damn’ are fine words as well, but nothing, I repeat, nothing, compares afterall to PERKELE if it’s use is moderated and sort of cherised for just a right moment. It’s just like you said, idiots/working class individuals aren’t just “smart” enough to use these words the right way. Sometimes I really have to turn around and ‘facepalm’ by myself when some people sow the cusswords like they’re really having a conversation with those words. It’s actually a little bit funny at the same time but sort of depressing too. I’ve always despised idiots as knowledge is actually free (but for how long…) and if you’re not completely retarded and have cerebral palsy or something else physiological like that, you should be educating yourself all the time… but that’s a different subject.

        I don’t know if you’ve seen any old finnish movies but some scenes with old agricultural settings and hard-working men have something really powerful and ‘finnish’ in them and the use of the word ‘perkele’ fits sometimes there like a fist in the eye. Many times when I’m “battling against” the gigantic rocks scattered by mother nature around my summercottage that word comes out like it’s a completely natural thing to say in that situation. It gives some edge just when you need it and it sort of calms the nerves down a bit to save my strength (and my finnish temperament) to actually move the rocks instead of them just keeping still (and laughing at me… :) ). Maybe the god of the gravity hears my prayers then, I don’t know, hahaha. :D

        “Svarte hellvete” actually sounds really menacing. If thought in sort of lame context, it’s not just your everyday basic christian hell, but actually the black version of it; no light is actually able to escape that version of hell as everything is black hahahaha!
        But if we recall the pagan origin of that word, it has some real meaning. It almost like makes it sort of an unfortunate adventure. Just a “visit to hel/death” ain’t nothing but let’s add some black dangers and sinister aspects to it; let’s add some seasoning and make the trip to the land of the dead a little bit more frightening…

        Haha, this is just my interpretation, I have absolutely no idea what this expression is really about, but it sure does have some character!!!

        Do you have any idea of other finnish deities and their names? I mean I’ve read some really vague and dubious articles about this subject and there’s some kinda messed up information about it. The equivalent of the allfather, the “main god” and the leader of the gods, Odin is meant to be called “Ukko” in finnish and his wife is called Akka. If I recall right, the god of the waters (mostly lakes) is called Ahti and the god of the forests is Tapio and the god of the agriculture is Ägräs (note the word…). But that’s all I know.

        I’m not sure if there’s really any information on this available in english, but if you have some insight to it and can give me some leads where to find more about this, please do so. Like I’ve told even on this blog, we finns have almost none of written knowledge of our past and our heritage and of our old gods. Scandinavians have vast material, like the Eddas and so forth, but we have nothing.

  7. That’s really interesting, that our forebears could know that and not only describe it but put it into a tale.

  8. It is clear to me that many civilizations in Antiquity, especially our european civilizations were far more advanced than we think today. But when the scheming jews in their envying of the power and beauty that europeans achieved took over with the help of some very greedy and sadly just as much power hungry non-jews, all this knowledge was burned (see Library of Alexandria etc.), and what remained converted and adapted to fit their agenda. The middle ages were a plague for humanity and evolution and we still have the chains that were put on us back then today. The only diffrence is that today the methods of submission are more subtle through the overwhelming mass-media and the “terrorrism” mania.

    • Megingjörð, Meginjörð etc. is simply different ways of saying the same. Yes, it can be “belt of strength”, but it is hardly a coincidence that it can also mean “strength of the Earth” or “Earth strength”.

      Remember there was no clear orthography. E. g. Nörvi is some times spelled Narfi, but it is still the same name with the same meaning.

  9. I’m really curious about what precisely the ancients knew. I wonder if they were able to estimate the size of the sun, whether they knew about galaxies and such. I’m very impressed with the knowledge they amassed.

  10. I had seen in a documentary that asteroids entering our solar system either crash onto Jupiters surface or due to powerful gravitational acceleration make an orbit around the planet only to be shot again in outer space in a much higher velocity.Sort of like a boomerang or Thors Hammer

  11. Pingback: New Thulean Perspective post; “Science in Scandinavian Mythology; Gravity”. | Ancestral Cult

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