The World Ash : Yggdrasil

Yggdrasil: The Nine Worlds of Norse Mythology

In Norse mythology, Yggdrasil (pronounced /ˈɪɡdrəsɪl/; from Old Norse Yggdrasill, pronounced [ˈyɡːˌdrasilː]) is an immense tree that is central in Norse cosmology; the world tree, and around the tree exist nine worlds. It is generally considered to mean “Ygg‘s (Odin‘s) horse”.

Yggdrasil is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources, and the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson. In both sources, Yggdrasil is an immense ash tree that is central and considered very holy. The gods go to Yggdrasil daily to hold their courts. The branches of Yggdrasil extend far into the heavens, and the tree is supported by three roots that extend far away into other locations; one to the well Urðarbrunnr in the heavens, one to the spring Hvergelmir, and another to the well Mímisbrunnr. Creatures live within Yggdrasil, including the wyrm (dragon) Níðhöggr, an unnamed eagle, and the stags Dáinn, Dvalinn, Duneyrr and Duraþrór.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

For other uses, see Yggdrasil (disambiguation).

“The Ash Yggdrasil” (1886) by Friedrich Wilhelm Heine.

Conflicting scholarly theories have been proposed about the etymology of the name Yggdrasill, the possibility that the tree is of another species than ash, the relation to tree lore and to Eurasian shamanic lore, the possible relation to the trees Mímameiðr and LæraðrHoddmímis holt, the sacred tree at Uppsala, and the fate of Yggdrasil during the events of Ragnarök.




Yggdrasil (1895) by Lorenz Frølich.

Yggdrasil comes from Old Norse Yggdrasill.[1] In English, the spellings YggdrasilYggdrasill, and Ygdrasil are used, as shown by entries in English dictionaries and encyclopedias.[2][3][4] It is usually pronounced /ˈɪɡdrəsɪl/ in English, and only rarely [ˈyɡdrəsiːl][5] because the sound[y] does not exist in English and most English speakers are therefore unaccustomed to producing it.

The generally accepted meaning of Old Norse Yggdrasill is “Odin’s horse”, based on the etymology that drasill means “horse” and Ygg(r) is one of Odin’s many names. The Poetic Edda poem Hávamál describes how Odin sacrificed himself to himself by hanging in a tree, making this tree Odin’s gallows. This tree was apparently Yggdrasil, and gallows can be called “the horse of the hanged”, so Odin’s gallows developed into the expression “Odin’s horse”, which then became the name of the tree.[1]

Nevertheless, scholarly opinions regarding the precise meaning of the name Yggdrasill vary, particularly on the issue of whether Yggdrasill is the name of the tree itself or if only the full term askr Yggdrasils refers specifically to the tree, where Old Norse askr means “ash tree”. According to this interpretation, askr Yggdrasils means “the world tree upon which ‘the horse [Odin’s horse] of the highest god [Odin] is bound'”. Both of these etymologies rely on a presumed but unattested *Yggsdrasill.[1]

A third interpretation, presented by F. Detter, is that the name Yggdrasill refers to the word yggr (“terror”), yet not in reference to the Odinic name, and so Yggdrasill would then mean “tree of terror, gallows”. F. R. Schröder has proposed a fourth etymology according to which yggdrasill means “yew pillar”, deriving yggia from*igwja (meaning “yew-tree“), and drasill from *dher- (meaning “support”).[1]


[edit]Poetic Edda

In the Poetic Edda, the tree is mentioned in the three poems VöluspáHávamál, and Grímnismál.


“Norns” (1832) from Die Helden und Götter des Nordens, oder das Buch der Sagen.

In the second stanza of the Poetic Edda poem Völuspá, the völva (a shamanic seeress) reciting the poem to the god Odin says that she remembers far back to “early times”, being raised by jötnar (giants), recalls nine worlds and “nine wood-ogresses” (Old Norse nío ídiðiur), and when Yggdrasil was a seed (“glorious tree of good measure, under the ground”).[6] In stanza 19, the völva says:

An ash I know there stands,
Yggdrasill is its name,
a tall tree, showered
with shining loam.
From there come the dews
that drop in the valleys.
It stands forever green over
Urðr’s well.[7]

In stanza 20, the völva says that from the lake under the tree come three “maidens deep in knowledge” named UrðrVerðandi, and Skuld. The maidens “incised the slip of wood,” “laid down laws” and “chose lives” for the children of mankind and the destinies (ørlǫg) of men.[8] In stanza 27, the völva details that she is aware that “Heimdallr‘s hearing is couched beneath the bright-nurtured holy tree.”[9] In stanza 45, Yggdrasil receives a final mention in the poem. The völva describes, as a part of the onset of Ragnarök, that Heimdallr blows Gjallarhorn, that Odin speaks with Mímir‘s head, and then:

Yggdrasill shivers,
the ash, as it stands.
The old tree groans,
and the giant slips free.[10]


Odin sacrificing himself upon Yggdrasil (1895) by Lorenz Frølich.

In stanza 34 of the poem Hávamál, Odin describes how he once sacrificed himself to himself by hanging on a tree. The stanza reads:

I know that I hung on a windy tree
nine long nights,
wounded with a spear, dedicated to Odin,
myself to myself,
on that tree of which no man knows
from where its roots run.[11]

In the stanza that follows, Odin describes how he had no food nor drink there, that he peered downward, and that “I took up the runes, screaming I took them, then I fell back from there.”[11] While Yggdrasil is not mentioned by name in the poem and other trees exist in Norse mythology, the tree is near universally accepted as Yggdrasil, and if the tree is Yggdrasil, then the name Yggdrasil directly relates to this story.[12]


In the poem Grímnismál, Odin (disguised as Grímnir) provides the young Agnar with cosmological lore. Yggdrasil is first mentioned in the poem in stanza 29, where Odin says that, because the “bridge of the Æsir burns” and the “sacred waters boil,” Thor must wade through the riversKörmt and Örmt and two rivers named Kerlaugar to go “sit as judge at the ash of Yggdrasill.” In the stanza that follows, a list of names of horses are given that the Æsir ride to “sit as judges” at Yggdrasil.[13]

In stanza 31, Odin says that the ash Yggdrasil has three roots that grow in three directions. He details that beneath the first lives Hel, under the second live frost jötnar, and beneath the third lives mankind. Stanza 32 details that a squirrel named Ratatoskr must run across Yggdrasil and bring “the eagle’s word” from above to Níðhöggr below. Stanza 33 describes that four harts named Dáinn, Dvalinn, Duneyrr and Duraþrór consume “the highest boughs” of Yggdrasil.[13]

In stanza 34, Odin says that more serpents lie beneath Yggdrasil “than any fool can imagine” and lists them as Góinn and Móinn (possibly meaning Old Norse “land animal”[14]), which he describes as sons of Grafvitnir (Old Norse, possibly “ditch wolf”[15]), Grábakr (Old Norse “Greyback”[14]), Grafvölluðr (Old Norse, possibly “the one digging under the plain” or possibly amended as “the one ruling in the ditch”[15]), Ófnir (Old Norse “the winding one, the twisting one”[16]), and Sváfnir (Old Norse, possibly “the one who puts to sleep = death”[17]), who Odin adds that he thinks will forever gnaw on the tree’s branches.[13]

In stanza 35, Odin says that Yggdrasil “suffers agony more than men know”, as a hart bites it from above, it decays on its sides, and Níðhöggr bites it from beneath.[18] In stanza 44, Odin provides a list of things that are what he refers to as the “noblest” of their kind. Within the list, Odin mentions Yggdrasil first, and states that it is the “noblest of trees”.[19]

[edit]Prose Edda

The title page of Olive Bray’s 1908 translation of the Poetic Edda by W. G. Collingwood.

The norns Urðr, Verðandi, and Skuld beneath the world tree Yggdrasil (1882) byLudwig Burger.

Yggdrasil is mentioned in two books in the Prose Edda, in Gylfaginning and Skáldskaparmál. In Gylfaginning, Yggdrasil is introduced in chapter 15. In chapter 15, Gangleri (described as king Gylfi in disguise) asks where is the chief or holiest place of the gods. High replies “It is the ash Yggdrasil. There the gods must hold their courts each day”. Gangleri asks what there is to tell about Yggdrasil. Just-As-High says that Yggdrasil is the biggest and best of all trees, that its branches extend out over all of the world and reach out over the sky. Three of the roots of the tree support it, and these three roots also extend extremely far: one “is among the Æsir, the second among the frost jötnar, and the third over Niflheim. The root over Niflheim is gnawed at by the wyrm Níðhöggr, and beneath this root is the spring Hvergelmir. Beneath the root that reaches the frost jötnar is the well Mímisbrunnr, “which has wisdom and intelligence contained in it, and the master of the well is called Mimir“. Just-As-High provides details regarding Mímisbrunnr and then describes that the third root of the well “extends to heaven” and that beneath the root is the “very holy” well Urðarbrunnr. At Urðarbrunnr the gods hold their court, and every day the Æsir ride to Urðarbrunnr up over the bridgeBifröst. Later in the chapter, a stanza from Grímnismál mentioning Yggdrasil is quoted in support.[20]

In chapter 16, Gangleri asks “what other particularly notable things are there to tell about the ash?” High says there is quite a lot to tell about. High continues that an eagle sits on the branches of Yggdrasil and that it has much knowledge. Between the eyes of the eagle sits a hawk called Veðrfölnir. A squirrel called Ratatoskr scurries up and down the ash Yggdrasil carrying “malicious messages” between the eagle and Níðhöggr. Four stags named Dáinn, Dvalinn, Duneyrr, and Duraþrór run between the branches of Yggdrasil and consume its foilage. In the spring Hvergelmir are so many snakes along with Níðhöggr “that no tongue can enumerate them”. Two stanzas from Grímnismál are then cited in support. High continues that the norns that live by the holy well Urðarbrunnr each day take water from the well and mud from around it and pour it over Yggdrasil so that the branches of the ash do not rot away or decay. High provides more information about Urðarbrunnr, cites a stanza from Völuspá in support, and adds that dew falls from Yggdrasil to the earth, explaining that “this is what people call honeydew, and from it bees feed”.[21]

In chapter 41, the stanza from Grímnismál is quoted that mentions that Yggdrasil is the foremost of trees.[22] In chapter 54, as part of the events of Ragnarök, High describes that Odin will ride to the well Mímisbrunnr and consult Mímir on behalf of himself and his people. After this, “the ash Yggdrasil will shake and nothing will be unafraid in heaven or on earth”, and then the Æsir and Einherjar will don their war gear and advance to the field of Vígríðr. Further into the chapter, the stanza in Völuspá that details this sequence is cited.[23]

In the Prose Edda book Skáldskaparmál, Yggdrasil receives a single mention, though not by name. In chapter 64, names for kings and dukesare given. “Illustrious one” is provided as an example, appearing in a Christianity-influenced work by the skald Hallvarðr Háreksblesi: “There is not under the pole of the earth [Yggdrasil] an illustrious one closer to the lord of monks [God] than you.”[24]


This large tree in the Viking AgeÖverhogdal tapestries may be Yggdrasil with Gullinkambi on top.[25]

[edit]Shamanic origins

Hilda Ellis Davidson comments that the existence of nine worlds around Yggdrasil is mentioned more than once in Old Norse sources, but the identity of the worlds is never stated outright, though it can be deduced from various sources. Davidson comments that “no doubt the identity of the nine varied from time to time as the emphasis changed or new imagery arrived”. Davidson says that it is unclear where the nine worlds are located in relation to the tree; they could either exist one above the other or perhaps be grouped around the tree, but there are references to worlds existing beneath the tree, while the gods are pictured as in the sky, a rainbow bridge (Bifröst) connecting the tree with other worlds. Davidson opines that “those who have tried to produce a convincing diagram of the Scandinavian cosmos from what we are told in the sources have only added to the confusion”. [26]

Davidson notes parallels between Yggdrasil and shamanic lore in northern Eurasia:

[…] the conception of the tree rising through a number of worlds is found in northern Eurasia and forms part of the shamanic lore shared by many peoples of this region. This seems to be a very ancient conception, perhaps based on the Pole Star, the centre of the heavens, an the image of the central tree in Scandinavia may have been influenced by it […]. Among Siberian shamans, a central tree may be used as a ladder to ascend the heavens […].[26]

Davidson says that the notion of an eagle atop a tree and the world serpent coiled around the roots of the tree has parallels in other cosmologies from Asia. She goes on to say that Norse cosmology may have been influenced by these Asiatic cosmologies from a northern location. Davidson adds, on the other hand, that it is attested that the Germanic peoples worshiped their deities in open forest clearings and that a sky god was particularly connected with the oak tree, and therefore “a central tree was a natural symbol for them also”.[26]

[edit]Mímameiðr, Hoddmímis holt and Ragnarök

Líf and Lífþrasir after emerging from Hoddmímis holt (1895) by Lorenz Frølich

Connections have been proposed between the wood Hoddmímis holt (Old Norse “Hoard-Mímir‘s”[27] holt) and the tree Mímameiðr (“Mímir’s tree”), generally thought to refer to the world tree Yggdrasil, and the spring Mímisbrunnr.[27] John Lindow concurs that Mímameiðr may be another name for Yggdrasil and that if the Hoard-Mímir of the name Hoddmímis holt is the same figure as Mímir (associated with the spring named after him, Mímisbrunnr), then the Mímir’s holt—Yggdrasil—and Mímir’s spring may be within the same proximity.[28]

Carolyne Larrington notes that it is nowhere expressly stated what will happen to Yggdrasil during the events of Ragnarök. Larrington points to a connection between the primordial figure of Mímir and Yggdrasil in the poem Völuspá, and theorizes that “it is possible that Hoddmimir is another name for Mimir, and that the two survivors hide in Yggdrasill.”[29]

Rudolf Simek theorizes that the survival of Líf and Lífþrasir through Ragnarök by hiding in Hoddmímis holt is “a case of reduplication of the anthropogeny, understandable from the cyclic nature of the Eddic escatology.” Simek says that Hoddmímis holt “should not be understood literally as a wood or even a forest in which the two keep themselves hidden, but rather as an alternative name for the world-tree Yggdrasill. Thus, the creation of mankind from tree trunks (Askr, Embla) is repeated after the Ragnarǫk as well.” Simek says that in Germanic regions, the concept of mankind originating from trees is ancient. Simek additionally points out legendary parallels in a Bavarian legend of a shepherdwho lives inside a tree, whose descendants repopulate the land after life there has been wiped out by plague (citing a retelling by F. R. Schröder). In addition, Simek points to an Old Norse parallel in the figure of Örvar-Oddr, “who is rejuvenated after living as a tree-man (Ǫrvar-Odds saga 24–27)”.[30]

[edit]Warden trees, Irminsul, and sacred trees

A tree grows atop Mysselhøj,
Nordic Bronze Age burial mound inRoskildeDenmark.

Continuing as late as the 19th century, warden trees were venerated in areas of Germany and Scandinavia, considered to be guardians and bringers of luck, and offerings were sometimes made to them. A massive birch tree standing atop a burial mound and located beside a farm in western Norway is recorded as having had ale poured over its roots during festivals. The tree was felled in 1874.[31]

Davidson comments that “the position of the tree in the centre as a source of luck and protection for gods and men is confirmed” by these rituals to Warden Trees. Davidson notes that the gods are described as meeting beneath Yggdrasil to hold their things, and that the pillars venerated by the Germanic peoples, such as the pillar Irminsul, were also symbolic of the center of the world. Davidson details that it would be difficult to ascertain whether a tree or pillar came first, and that this likely depends on if the holy location was in a thickly wooded area or not. Davidson notes that there is no mention of a sacred tree at Þingvellir in Iceland yet that Adam of Bremen describes a huge tree standing next to the Temple at Uppsala in Sweden, which Adam describes as remaining green throughout summer and winter, and that no one knew what type of tree it was. Davidson comments that while it is uncertain that Adam’s informant actually witnessed that the tree’s type is unknown, the existence of sacred trees in pre-Christian Germanic Europe is further evidenced by records of their destruction by early Christian missionaries, such as Thor’s Oak by Saint Boniface.[31]

Ken Dowden comments that behind Irminsul, Thor’s Oak in Geismar, and the sacred tree at Uppsala “looms a mythic prototype, an Yggdrasil, the world-ash of the Norsemen”.[32]

[edit]Modern influence

The world ash Ygdrasil (as Richard Wagner spelled it) appears in the ominous opening scene of Götterdämmerung, in which the three Norns tell how Wotan had long ago broken off a branch to fashion himself the spear that gave him mastery over men and gods, and in which Wotan soon comes to wake Erda, Mother Earth, from her sleep with urgent questioning.

Modern works of art depicting Yggdrasil include Die Nornen (painting, 1888) by K. Ehrenberg; Yggdrasil (fresco, 1933) by Axel Revold, located in the University of Oslo library auditorium in OsloNorwayHjortene beiter i løvet på Yggdrasil asken (wood relief carving, 1938) on the Oslo City Hall by Dagfin Werenskjold; and the bronze relief on the doors of the Swedish Museum of National Antiquities (around 1950) by B. Marklund in Stockholm, Sweden. Poems mentioning Yggdrasil include Vårdträdet by Viktor Rydberg and Yggdrasill by J. Linke.[33]

Many modern video games or otherwise fantasy themed books or role-playing games have included references or versions of Yggdrasil. One such reference is in the Dragon Quest series; a gigantic tree known as Yggrasil stands in the midst of a desert in the games. Resurecting items known as “Yggdrasil Leaves” return life to fallen characters, as well as “Yggdrasil Dew” which heals all characters. Another such game to feature Yggdrasil is the Warcraft series; the night elven capital is based in a giant tree called Teldrassil, often referred to as “world tree”.

[edit]See also

Futher Reading:

Yggdrasil – The home cosmic ‘Tree of Life’ that binds the universe together

Asgard – The home to the Gods and Goddesses of the Aesir
Alfheim – The realm where the Light Elves dwell
Vanaheim – The home to the Gods and Goddesses of the Vanir
Midgard – The home of the mankind
Jotunheim – The realm where the Giants dwell
Muspellheim – The world of primal fire where the Muspilli Fire Giants dwell
Niflheim – The “world of mists” and primal ice
SvartAlfheim – The realm where the Black Elves / Dwarfs dwell
Hel – The land of the dead, ruled by the goddess Hella.

The  S A C R E D   C O S M O L O G Y  of


The ancient Northern Europeans did not see a simple universe with a heaven above and a hell below. Instead they saw a complex system of multiple planes and enclosures interconnected with our own. According to the ancient Eddas, these planes or worlds were born when the realm of fire, Muspelheim, in the South moved north to meet the icy realm of Niflheim in the North. They met in what is known as the Ginnungapap “the yawning void.” From this union sprang forth two beings Ymir the primeval giant and Audhumla, the giant primeval cow. By licking the ice, Audhumla made a new being appear, Buri. From Buri sprang Borr who married Bestla, who gave birth to Odin, Villi and Ve. These three brother Gods slew Ymir and from him created the Nine Worlds and the World Tree that supports the worlds. Although the Nine Worlds are linked by the World Tree, they by no means lie near each other, for there are hills, valleys, mountains, and even rivers between them formed by the bark of the tree. Beyond the Nine Worlds are unknown worlds resting in the Útgard “that outside the enclosure”.



By comparing the old mythological explanation to modern Astronomy and Cosmology, it seems for me probable to show a common knowledge, which, for the first part, is experienced by physically and spiritually senses and for the other part is knowledge based on modern instrumental Astronomical and Cosmological measurements.

If such a comparison is successful, a great implication must be: The human spirit is able to gain Cosmological knowledge about the Earth, the Solar system and the Galaxy without the use of any instruments. And it is my claim that there is a big different between getting Cosmological knowledge spiritually and instrumentally. Instrumental measurements and knowledge tends to bond to the Linear World picture and the spiritual knowledge to the Circular World picture. And, although the modern scientists of course can be very ecstatic and emotional when new knowledge is gained, the spiritual way of experiencing the Cosmos creates a great respect for the creative forces, which gained intuitively, gives the basic understanding how to live concordantly with the creative forces on the Earth and outside the Earth.

The 3-fold common knowledge in 1

The (Accumulated) Norse mythological family.


When you are dealing with the Norse mythology, you must have in mind that, except from the Creation Myth itself, there is many layers of telling added throughout the time. Gods and Goddesses have been described from one time to another, and maybe the Gods and Goddesses from other cultures have been added with the increasing movements of populations. In order to distinguish and categorize the Gods and Goddesses, one must concentrate on their specific and common attributes. In this matter, the Comparative Mythology and Religion is of great importance to study.

And it is astoundingly firstly how identical the Story of Creation is told all over the World and secondly how identical the Gods and Goddesses are described also all over the World. Globally the stories are very similar! And only local conditions use some different animals – and anthropomorphic beings – to describe the meaning of the different myths. Of course there is this common knowledge! We all live on the same planet under the same sky under the same cosmological conditions!


(The Mythological Story itself in blueprint – comments and explanations in ordinary print)


The Story of Creation in the Norse Mythology begins in the great emptiness, called Ginnungagap.

This opening of the story can immediately be compared to the modern theory of Big Bang: “Before there was something, there was nothing”! Or: “Out of nothing emerged everything”.

Both explanations should of course not been taking literally – and, in my opinion, both telling should be understood as a “technique” to explain the basics of how creative forces merges the material and later on expands in cosmos in a rhythmic and cyclic movement.


1 is the number for Everything. 2 for Light and Matter, for Warmth and Cold and for expansion and contraction. 3 is for the combined worlds of the Earth, the Solar System and our Galaxy. 4 is for Air, Fire, Water and Soil. 8 is for the interaction of the 4 elements. By this description one can easily imagine even modern atomic principles which is used in many moderns scientific branches. And just think about how the weather changes and interacts throughout the seasons.


We set the number in (1 = Everything) and begin the Norse Story of Creation with the 2 basic qualities:

In the warm Muspelheim in the South, sparkles and glowing embers from Fire are flying out and spreads towards the northern part in Ginnungagap, Niflheim, where darkness and coldness has deep-frozen all matter.

Now: In order to describe the originally creative and characteristically powers, one can only describe the movement and progression of these powers in familiar terms. And the familiar terms comes from the seasonal changes of the Year. And when using the seasonal changing’s as a story telling technique, our ancestors also have described that “everything above is like below”. That is: The same forces and laws works both in Macro Cosmos and Micro Cosmos.

– The fire, light and warmth from Muspelheim meets the frozen matter from Niflheim in “the middle of Ginnungagap = “the centre where Creation in our Galaxy” began.

The frozen matter gets warmer and moist shrouds everything. Using the terms of modern Astrophysics, the “cold+moist” and the “hot+dry” directly can be interpreted as Hydrogen and Helium. When two hydrogen atoms collides, Helium is created releasing light (let there be light) and warmth and thereby accelerate the matter of the Creation.

In the course of this events, the Story concerns the very basics of Creation: When cold and warm matter meets and sets of a beginning of movement.

Out from the middle of Ginnungagap grows the cow Audhumbla, the first symbol of Creation. From Audhumbla´s udder floats rivers of milk.

Why “rivers of milk”? Because the color of the Milky Way is white. And that´s why a Cow is such a great symbol of Creation – of course together with many other symbols.

A Rock Carving from Norway and Turkey, both marking the centre of the Milky Way.

An Egyptian female, The Great Mother, radiating matter from the Womb compared to a Star Atlas with the southern contours of the Milky Way and the centre of the Milky Way marked with an inserted Spiral.

From the centre in “Audhumbla´s womb floats the rivers out and gives nourishment to the Giant Ymer, the second symbol of Creation.

On both sides of the Egyptian picture in the middle, the northern and the southern contours of our Milky Way. The Egyptian female picture are covered with Stars which clearly tells us that she have something to do with the Night Sky, and her name is Nut, queen of the Night and she is the Mother Goddess. If the left Star Atlas picture is placed under the right Atlas picture, we have the very same motif and meaning as on the Egyptian mythological picture.

Ymer drank of the 4 rivers of Milk and, while sleeping, 2 human beings, one woman and one man, grow out of his arm pits. And out from the giant Ymer, the whole Sky and World was created.

From the Danish Wessel of the Gundestrup Cauldron: The giant Ymer holding the first 2 humans, who are symbolized above in the Star Atlas pictures and on the Egyptian picture.

From Muspelheim in the south came more sparks of light which created the Stars, the Sun and the Moon. This indicates very strongly that our Solar System is created in the Centre of our Galaxy.


The number 3 symbolizes the 3 dimensions in the Norse Mythology, namely Midgaard where humans live, Asgaard above with Star Constellation fantasy pictures of both human-  and animal like beings. The third dimension, Udgaard, belongs to all giant beings directly connected to the fantasy pictures of the Milky way contours on the northern and the southern hemisphere. Every of these 3 dimensions or Worlds was mythological divides up in 3 subdivisions which gives the holy number of 9 Worlds in which for instants Odin and Balder traveled in order to gain knowledge from all dimensions.

The schematic drawing in the middle show the 3 dimensions or 3 Rings of worlds. Number 1 is your location on Earth, 2 is the Earth itself, 3 is the Star Heaven and 4 with its grey/white vaulting band on the night Sky. The Rock Carving pictures are from Ireland and Sweden.

This Rock Art Carving was found 2009.10.10 at the location of “Anebjerg” on the Northern part of the Baltic Island of Bornholm, Denmark, very close to my location.
In the Rings, dots are engraved as symbols of the Sun, Moon, Planets and Stars encircling the Day- and Night Sky on the 3 dimensions or Worlds in the Norse Mythology. Such Cup Marks carved in the rings, are not that common. The figures in the image are symbolizing the revolving contours of the Milky Way. (Location explanation: “Anebjerg = “Ane” = Danish for “Ancient/forefathers/foremothers” and “bjerg” = Danish for mountain, the mythological archetype of the Primeval Mound, “the place where the Human live and rise from”, the center of the Milky Way Galaxy.


In the middle of the World stands a tall ash tree, called Yggdrasil. Its crown reach up in Heaven and its roots stands in the Underworld. (Originally, the Tree of Life meant the the Galaxy Tree in the centre of our Galaxy, but the Tree of Life is also symbolized as the cooperative forces between the Sun and the Earth as told below:)

There have been many attempts to describe how our Nordic ancestors have imagined their perception of the World.

A Rock Art carving from Sweden shoving 2 Trees and the whole “Noah Arch” or the Norse Mythology great Ship “Skibladnir” sailing on the Heavenly Oceans. (

The Story of the World Tree is about how the creative forces works throughout the seasonal changes on the Earth. The giant tree Yggdrasil is standing in the middle of the Earth with its stem going TROUGH the Earth axis and its crown and roots spreading out in the Earth atmosphere! All the mythological animal figures mentioned in connection with the Ash Yggdrasil, are Star Constellations or Milky Way figures. Except from one special animal, namely the squirrel “Ratatosk”

The story of the World Tree is specifically dealing with the powers that works inside and outside the Earth throughout the seasons. It’s first and foremost about how the geomagnetic forces inside and outside the Earth is working and how this force is creating all vegetable life on Earth. And it’s about the Sun influences on the Earth magnetic fields both in a day and while the Earth is orbiting the Sun.

In the seasonal changes, the creative geomagnetic power increase and decrease because of the Sun radiation influence on the Earth magnetic fields daily and annually when the Earth axis leans away and towards the Sun throughout the season – and this qualitative changes goes both ways, “up and down” and of course it creates opposite seasonal phenomenon’s on the northern and the southern hemisphere at the same time. And the geomagnetic forces creates both the vegetable tops and the roots trough the Earth daily and seasonal movement.

In the Spring time you can observe the soil damping. It’s not only because of the Sun warming up the soil. Long before the Sun have a warming power the warmth of the geomagnetic force have slowly warmed up the soil deep within the ground. And if you cut a scratch or score in a tree stem some time before spring, you can observe how early the sap runs some time before the Sun have any greater warmth effect. This indicates an increasing geomagnetic  pressure from within the Earth up trough all vegetable matters. A geomagnetic pressure that increase and decrease in the seasons. Up and down – up and down. Just as the squirrel “Ratatosk” in the Norse Mythology.

Ratatosk is a squirrel running up and down on the Ash Yggdrasil world tree. Ratatosk can freely move between the worlds of ice in Niflheim and the world of fire in Muspelheim. Ratatosk brings the words from the Eagle in the top of Yggdrasil to the snake Nidhug below in the roots of Yggdrasil. Ratatosk talks with everybody in the 3 worlds or dimensions. Ratatosk brings news between all in the 3 worlds or dimensions. And there is a constantly fight between the Eagle in the crown of Yggdrasil and the Snake in the roots of Yggdrasil.

The squirrel Ratatosk is the specific symbol of the changing Geomagnetic Force itself. The story of Ratatosk is a fantastic precise construction of describing the creative process throughout the seasonal changes in the increasing and decreasing Geomagnetic creative force and as specific description of all vegetable growth.


In a world described in circles, it’s NOT very likely that our Norse ancestors have a perception of a total end of the World! The story of Ragnarok is just a simple story of everything in life. Of Star Constellation figures are moving throughout the day and seasons. How everything grows and vanish. Of birth and dead – all the cyclic phenomenon’s we humans can experience in a lifetime as well in bigger cyclic periods beyond our life.

– With this description I provisionally conclude the story of the Creation in the Norse Mythology – I hope you now are open for this modern attempt of interpretation of the old story! For my own part, I’m sure one can find similar connections and explanations between old and modern facts in every cultural Story of Creation all over the World.

It’s just a matter of looking at the old stories and symbols in a new way and connect these to moderns scientific fact from Astronomy and Cosmology.

Link to an alternative Cosmology:

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