Odin

Odin the Allfather

The chief of the Aesir gods was Odin the Allfather. Most of the time, Odin was illustrated as an old man with the long white beard, wearing a dark cloak and a floppy hat. He spoke only in poems and he granted his ability to compose poems at his pleasure. Odin sometimes disguised himself in other forms of animals or humans. He was one of the most influential and powerful Gods both in Norse mythology and in modern understanding.

Odin the Allfather

Odin’s Palaces

Odin the Allfather was the God of war and death and also the God of sky and poetry. Up in the stronghold Asgard, one of his halls was Valaskjalf built and roofed with pure and beautifully shining silver. Inside the hall lay the high throne of Odin and he would observe the whole cosmos. No one could ever have a chance to sit on the throne of Odin, except for himself and sometimes his beautiful wife Frigg.

Odin’s throne in Valaskjalf

Odin also presided over the glimmering Valhalla – the palace of the fallen warriors. In the Valhalla, Odin kept his chosen warriors as his desperate preparation for Ragnarok days. The chosen warriors would fight every day and when the nights came, they would feast and chant. The life in Valhalla was envied by those who could not afford a seat in this Holy Hall. Odin and Goddess Freya shared the chosen human warriors. To be specific, half of them would follow Odin to dwell in Valhalla, the others would become the army of Goddess Freya.

Valhalla feast

Odin’s Traits, Sacrifices, and Treasures

Odin sacrifice for runes

He was the nonstop and desperate seeker after knowledge. He was willing to offer sacrifices in order to receive wisdom. There were two famous stories of Odin sacrifice for knowledge. He once did not hesitate to trade one of his eye for the divine waters of knowledge. The reason why Odin lost one eye not only became famous but also inspiring and meaningful. Also, he hang himself on the branches of Yggdrasil without food or drink and being stabbed in order to possess the ability to decipher runes.

 

The commonly-seen weapon of Odin was his spear Gungnir. Odin’s spear was a product of the dwarves – the most skillful craftsmen in the cosmos. This spear rocked as it never missed its target. The Norse warriors used to throw their spears at the beginning of the war as an invocation of Odin the Allfather and his protection in war.

Odin on his eight-legged horse holding spear

Odin possessed a ring Draupner made by the dwarves. He was accompanied by five animal constant companions. A pair of his ravens known as Huginn and Muninn flew out and told him what happened in the Nine Realms. A couple of his wolves Freki and Geri who he shared his food with. Odin rode on an eight-legged steed called Sleipner.


Odin’s Death and Revenge

The dark prophecies foretold Odin’s doom. On the days of Ragnarok, Wolf Fenrir slew Odin just like the prophecy words. That was the primary reason for Odin’s careful preparation of choosing the bravest warriors to join his army and other despairing deeds.

Odin and Fenrir encountered

 

But how carefully did they prepare for the Ragnarok, the prophecies came into reality at last. They really did their best and what they needed to do was to fight their final battle until their last breath. Odin was swallowed by monstrous wolf Fenrir. The death of Odin left a hole in the hearts of gods and other beings. They mourned and despaired for their beloved chief would no longer be with them.

One of Odin’s son, Vidar, took his revenge on Fenrir who slew his father.


Lessons from Odin the Allfather

Odin the Allfather

Overall, the life story of Odin the Allfather proved himself one of the most intelligent and powerful Gods in Norse mythology. Odin must have possessed numerous qualities that many people desire to have in their life: thirst for wisdom, inspiration, passion, etc. If someone gets hold of Odin’s qualities, they are surely willing to seek after the profound knowledge.

The great point is that they do not keep the knowledge for only themselves, they spread it to others just like Odin introduced the meaning of runes to the cosmos after his own sacrifices.

Let the story of this great, bearded, and one-eyed old man instill inspiration into your hearts and minds.