Totemism in Norse Culture
Then. Y. Then. The. Skeleton. Hello. My dear friends how, are you my. Name is Arthur ger and today I'm going to talk about totemism. And animal. Totems, in the Norse culture. This. Video is part, of the Vikings, religious, symbols, video, but, I thought it would be better to make a video, solely, focused. On totemism. In the Norse culture, because. This, subject has more tribal, primitive. And shamanic, understandings. Then, the religious, symbolism I've presented on the previous video I will. Divide this video into two. Parts, first I, will give you a more historical. And archaeological. Approach to, animal, symbolism, India. To Nordic cultures, and then. I will speak about totemism. In the Norse culture. So. My dear friends let's. Get started at. First glance the, most predominant animals. Represented. In the Norse culture, are the, bear Raven. And wolf, these. Three animals are the most mentioned, in elite resources, and all, of them connected, to Odin. As, this, perfectly good example of a ninth century, figure, found, in Denmark, in lair, Odin. In his throne, itself. With his two Ravens huginn, and muninn and his, wolves in the back Gary. And Frankie. The. Wolf and the dog are, usually, the companions, in Seoul the journeys, to, the other world in votive, rituals, rituals. Dedicated, to specific duties. Most, often loading, to kill upon the deity and offer, as, sacrifice. Such animals, because they come, the victims, of the human sacrifice, into, their journey to the afterlife, dogs. And wolves are connected, with the warrior, ideology. Especially. For the Berserker, groups a group of young and married man who specialized, in the art of warfare. Several. Generations. Of warriors, combined, the name of battle. Terms weed, elements. Related, to dogs. And wolves also. Referring. To the initiation, of young people, into, the martial world although. The, Berserker, were warriors much, more connected, to bear cults, but. The very first warrior cults, were connected, to dogs and wolves, agent, indo-european. Wolf writes I have. A video precisely about. That, in. Northern, Europe these, wolf, rights and wolf, warriors, continue. To exist although at, a certain, point in Scandinavia. Story there, was a clear, division between warrior. Bear cults, and warrior. Wolf goats, the. Bear coats started, to be the official, elite warriors, of the Norse society, while, the wolf coats started, to be exclusive. Of hot castes I do. Believe that the roof, at night wolf, warriors, progressively. Stop being elite, trained, warriors. And became. Unofficial. Troops. Mercenaries. There. Is this possibility, that. Outlaws. Murderers. Criminals. Of, all sorts who were cast out from the society, started. To form their own groups. Of warriors, precisely. Doing, the same thing the original, wolf warrior cults. Did, young. Warriors, who abandoned, society, and adopted, the characteristics. Of dogs, and wolves and became. Wild. In nature. The, wolf ignore might have been wild, groups of warriors, and later, became, elite, warriors. Accepted. By the society only. To be put aside once, again. And offer. Their, services as mercenaries when, they became, outlaws. More. Or less what happened, to, the medieval, religious. Military, hoarders, they, were accepted. And add great, power when, it suited, the nobility and were. Outlawed. And forbidden. To exercise, their duties, when, they became an, inconvenient. Student ability. Birds. Birds. Of prey such as hawks and falcons are, traditionally. Symbols, of aristocracy. While. The eagle is an, emblem of power and. Ravens. Of course not just related to wisdom, but, as birds, related, to death, carrying. The dead into the afterlife. For. Instance we have this example, of a, pendant. Demonstrating. Two, Ravens, metamorphosing. Into the. Horn, tips of a bearded figure which, demonstrates. The continuity. Of ancient. Pre Viking codes in the Nordic area. You. See impressed. Auric times birds, of prey, were often, related to death and the, journey into the afterlife but. This sort of beliefs, are much more evident, in pre-celtic, cultures. Of Western. Europe along. The Atlantic, we. Have many, representations, of, warriors. Dressed, as birds, and we, bird. Hats, representing. Diffusion. Between warrior. Coats and death, rituals, and the, entire, afterlife. Perspectives. Of warriors, being being carried, into the afterlife by, birds it. Was common, to leave dead warriors, on high places, to, be taken by birds of prey their. Bodies, destroyed and, carried, by birds into the heavens, this. Sort of Western, European, traditions. Were, later adopted, by Scandinavians. Which, is why I do believe, the so called blood, eagle. Isn't, what we think it is I've. Also done a video about that one year ago. It's quite possible that the, description. Of the blood hiegel being a gruesome way of, punishment. And execution. Was, in fact an exaggeration. Made by, Christians. To amplify, the fear, people, had of those, terrible. Hidden. Norseman coming down the, frozen, wastes, to devour poor, innocent, Christians.
It's. Possible. That the blood Havel was actually. A ceremony. Invoking, the ancient. Early, Bronze Age, traditions. Of Western. Europe, leaving. The seized warriors, to birds or. It. Would have been a form of punishment to be eaten, by he, goes much, like the Greek myth of Prometheus. Being. Tied to a rock and every. Day an eagle, would heat his liver. That. Might be, what. The, blood eagle actually. Meant either, a ceremonial. Punishment, reserved, for, special warriors. Or a, death ritual, for the seized warriors. The. Use of an eagle is curious, because to the Greeks, it, was the personification of Zeus. So, maybe at a certain, point to, the Scandinavians. It. Was linked to holding as a, warrior and death date II and warriors. Of great renown weren't. Carried by crows or ravens or other carrion, birds but by the noble, cable of Odin, let's. Not forget that he does heal itself, with, all its animals, there, is a great eagle on the very top of the cosmic tree a very, widespread type, of amulet, in the Viking Age both in the finland area and in british, isles was. The use of versity. Both, bronze, imitations, and original, pieces it. Was supposed to contain magical. Properties, related, to the capture of the spirit, of the bear, there. Is a good example of, that in the Finnish culture, this. Word, right here which. I won't, try to pronounce it's, in Finnish and, roughly. Translated, it means bear. Hunting, feast. Prehistoric. Connotations. To the bear hunt and acquiring. The bear spirit to absorb, the bear qualities. Another. Example, in the reference, Sagara got the character, bode far has his soul transformed. Into a bear a reference. To the ancient. Prayer, Christian, rituals, still preserved, in movie medieval, literature. To. Our prehistoric ancestors, the, bear was seen as a sort of wild. Brother, our wild. Selves, for. Centuries the bear was considered, to, be a symbol, of an ability and power, and for, millennia, the bear was the king of the forests. Thus. His, connection, to royalty, before the lion was introduced, by, political. And religious, powers, which, came much, later into. The European, background. Anyway. In, the Scandinavian, case. And with, great prominence. During the Viking Age the, bear code was still alive as we, understand, in the figures of the Berserker. Ferocity. Strength. Endurance. Were. The, qualities sucked, by these warriors. But. As I've said there is always this idea of this, bear cult being linked to Odin, but, the bear is one of the very few animals, in the Scandinavian religious. Context, that, wasn't. Actually, linked to holding, for a very, long time in, history of Scandinavia, only. When Odin became, the god of kings. Sure. The bear was also, a symbol of royalty. But. That was much more in, pre-celtic, and Celtic, backgrounds. Not, much in. Scandinavia. It's. Quite possible, that the, bear cult is linked, to the God who learn, and not. Odin, because who drew before holding was, seen as the actual God ruling, the hayseed, sitting, on the throne and that mythological, past can still be remembered, in, detail, when, Odin, was, expelled, from, house guard and it, was who who. Was called by, the gods to sit on the throne this. Is a tale invoking, a Scandinavian, past when a god and the goddess of winter, and hunting, wore the, divine pair of the natives of Scandinavia. Before. The introduction, of the warrior. Cult of Odin, I highly. Doubt that the, Berserker, wore into an OD neck cult it's, much more plausible that they, embraced, a pray stoic bear cult still alive during the Viking, Age much, more tribal and Titanic in nature and that same, cult became, linked, to hula, while. The wolf raven, eagle and the serpent, were two-timing symbols, of OD the. Serpent, it, wasn't just a symbol of wisdom and protection, but also of the preservation of, the natural order and stability of, the universe, therefore. Also a symbol of chaos, because without chaos, there is no need for order. Chaos. Is the ever-changing, force, in the universe, that forces. The inevitable, change and evolution, of everything, the. Serpent, is linked, to many tonic deities, and the world spirits, precisely. For, being an animal, that lives in the earth comes. Out of the very soil from, darkness, coming.
To The surface to. Give the knowledge of hidden, secrets an. Animal. Associated. With Loki, hell goal, vague and her forms, as hater horrible, de huracán etc, but the serpent is also connected to Holden. Holdin. Metamorphosed. Into a snake, to, get to the meat of poetry, for, instance this. Metamorphosis, is exactly, what happened, to, the. Two, to Odin in religious, terms he, took many forms, and many, names because, when he was introduced, in Scandinavia. Many, local, deities were syncretized, combined. In a figure of Odin, Odin. Absorbed. Attributes, of other deities but. The serpent, continued, to be linked to holding, because, he, absorbed. Some of the underworld, Scandinavian. Gods, the. Earliest, scanning, even God similar, to Odin that we know of was. The Bronze Age spear, God engraved, on stone, we, huge, proportions. When compared, to other, elements, around, the. Importance, of this state is clear, he, was depicted as very. Big occupying. A large area of the rock surface as you, can see with those, people there for, scale this. Spear, God was a nature God as well, as a donek God chaotic. In nature the. Scandinavian, holding, before the cult of the Germanic Odin was introduced, in Scandinavia. Some. Of his prehistoric, myths. Remained. In the poems about holding. Becoming, a serpent, now. Talking about totemism. In the Norse culture. Totemism. In its spiritual. Essence, is the term to refer to the relationship, of spiritual. Bond between, a, human, or groups. Of humans with, specific, animals, and plants, the. Animal totem is generally. Understood to, be an ancestor, a guardian. A spiritual. Entity who. Provides, something, positive. To, the human, or humans. It's bound to and. In. The north's culture the animal, totem is intimately. Linked, to the spiritual, self, meaning. That it's not just an entity we can call upon like, a god or a goddess but. A spiritual. Entity that, it's part, of us directly. Connected. Two HUS do, two also being an ancestor, to the. Pre-christian, Norse and, certain. Germanic groups, totemism. Is manifested. In both animal. Helping, spirits, and animals. Of military, groups, incorporating. Shamanic. Practices. And trance. Techniques. Such. As we have seen before in, the berserker. And true third. Let's. Start by addressing, the figure. I'm, sure you are familiar with the term philia. Meaning, follower. Or also, fill your na something, that fetches, this. Term can be better understood if. We remember. That in sada the practitioner, of sailor is capable, of sending. Forth, its mind. In the form of an animal to do something, to catch fetch. Bring. Back the, embodiment, of the will of the practitioner. Of sailor to, physically, do and attract, things, and, most. Often this embodiment, of the will comes, in the form of a, cat, also. Ravens in general, we are talking about familiar. Spirits which later came to be understood as, the pets, of witches. In. The, north's tradition, the figure are spiritual. Entities, capable, of being. Controlled, or helping, someone because, they are attached, to the self being. Part of ourselves but at the same time, spiritual. Entities, with life of their own their, own individual. Existence, the. North's concept of the soul is complex, and divided.
Into Many parts and certain, parts are influenced. By our ancestors. And other. Spiritual, entities which, is why the figure, are part, of our spiritual, self, in. Old Norse literature, the figure are only, seen in dreams, or by people capable. Of seeing them with supernatural powers, they. Appear, in the shapes of women, or animals. But, are a sort, of doppelganger. Of the person, and can, act on behalf of the person or appear, instead, of the person, upon. A person's death the field yet live, the person, and becomes. An independent. Being, so, it's not like the concept of soul, in the, Christian perspective, it's. Just part. Of the soul of the individual, a sort of individual. Spiritual, being residing, in, and witness. However. It's possible that the philia can be transferred. To other family. Members, if, a certain relationship, is maintained, and so. The philia or the, future will, continue, to help future, generations. This, is because these spiritual. Entities are also associated to, the personified. Lack of a person, which is the India. But. I'll do a video just about. The, parts of the self in the near future so, the, figure, is understood. As animal, totems for. Instance a person of noble birth would have a figure in the form of a bear or a, boar a savage, person, very violent, in nature would. Have a wolf a sorcerer. Probably. A raven, or a serpent, etc. A helping, spirit, taking the characteristics. Of the person and vice versa the, person leaves by her or his totem, learning. From them acting, like them into, realizing their, characteristics. The. Gods themselves have, their own figure. Their own animal, totems, afraid. The, boar and horse Odin. Has Wolf's grave and serpents, and also horses, Freya. The cat and the boar poor, the goats hungry, Balder the wolf and serpent, in cave bear hell also, has the serpent, dragon, etc. Then. We have military societies. And warrior, groups who, adopted, the totemic view, of the world and to. The Norse the wolf and the bear were usually the totemic animals of these warrior, group's much. Praised, for, their ferocity, and, strength. The. Initiation, rites of young, warriors, usually. Involved. Spending. A period of time alone in the wilderness they. Would have to survive, by adopting, the. Of wild. Animals, such as the wolf and the bear obtaining. Food by hunting, gathering. And also, stealing, provisions. From other packs. Meaning. Villages. Towns, and even, other groups, of warriors. Constantly. Risking, their lives. The. Savage, world, and the life beyond the limits of the civilized, life was, the training ground, of these warriors on this. Case it's not about the individuals. Totem, but, about the totem, adopted, by the group, so.
Each Warrior adopted, the animal spirit of their group and acted, like so during, and after, their training, the. Warrior, achieved, a state of spiritual, unification. With the animal totem which, could be announced, with. Shamanic. And trance, techniques, or, even. With the conception, of psychotropic. Substances. The. Warriors would also dress, themselves in, a ritual, costume made from the hide of the. Animal so. To these warriors, embracing. The animal, totem, had to be a complete, process, of restoration both, in, and out. Becoming. The animal, themselves, it was, more than a mere symbolic, transformation. The. Figure, in this case is not just a helping spirit the, person was possessed, by the philia which, leads us to the spiritual. Level of shape-shifting. Shamanistic. Ish shamanistic, activities, within such warrior groups was precisely, to reach out to, the philia and take, a sort of pact. With it becoming. One the shape-shifting. Of the spiritual, self. Before. I say goodbye I want to leave a little message. Each. One of us as a, beast weeding, some. Of it in deep slumber and others have it on a lethargic. State. Once, in a while the Beast steers, and is aware of its condition, and wants to get out and it's. A great pain, to see it cannot break its chains, in. Our civilized, world we have built cages, to keep our wildest. Desires away. From this illusion. Of a sophisticated and enlightened. Existence. Brought, about by the evolution, of societies. It's. An irony really, oh the. Effort to domesticate, nature, and we, ended up domesticating. Ourselves. So. Once, in a while how. Just. Give it a try you won't be disappointed, at, first it will seem totally silly, until, you understand, the sense of freedom, it gives you how. Once, in a while unleash, the curl of the wilds from deep inside and let the winds carry it show. The world that the Beast is still very much alive and, oh, the, efforts of the society, to contain it weren't. Enough to silence it let. Them know and let them hear that, the old gods are still around. Alright, my dear friends thank. You so much for watching and see. You on the next video I put. It on.