Publicada por Arith Härger / 4:09 PM /
It is important to note that there is more than one type of god in the northern pantheon. Apart from the giants of frost and fire who it is said to dwell on the fringes of criation, the divinities of order were divided into two main families: the Aesir and the Vanir.
The Vanir seem to have predated the other gods, being pastoral deities associated with harvests, the fertility of beasts and humans and, not least, the earth itself, and also is a place of water, of shamans (the seiðman and siðkona), of peace and of healing. The most notable of the Vanir are the childrens of Njord, the beloved twins Frey and Freya, whose names mean "the lord" and "the lady" respectively.
The other godly dynasty is known as the Aesir. These are headed by Odin and his wife, Frigga, and it is among these deities that we find such familiar characters as Thor, the thunder god, and Tyr, god of war, both sons of Odin. Of course, as king of the gods, Odin is expected to have many sons, and among them can be numbered Baldur the Beautiful and his twin brother, Hodur the Blind, representing light and dark, day and night and summer and winter. The guardian of Asgard and the rainbow bridge that led to it is the ever-watchful Heimdall, himself a result of the union of Odin with one of the Nine sea giantesses ( none knows which one exactly except Odin himself and the nine daughters of Aegir ), known as the wave maidens. Heimdal is the god "who stood between", the ancestor of humankind who revealed the secrets of the runes to his mortal descendants. As might be expected, he figures largely in runic symbolism, having associations with no fewer then five runes out of the twenty-four in the rune sequance.
Before we leave the realm of Asgard, there is one god who is something of an anomaly: the treacherous Loki, born of the race of giants and the hated rival of Heimdall. Loki personifies wild, uncontrollable fire, in contrast to hos enemy, Heimdall, who symbolises a torch or a beacon, a friend to humankind. Nevertheless, Loki is blood brother to Odin, and his mischief was tolerated because of that kinship. However, Loki must have stretched the divine patience considerably, because it was he who caused the death of Baldur, and even though Sleipnir, one of his children, was considered benign, it was also he who was parent to Hella/Hela and the monstrous wolf, Fenris, who tried to destroy the universe and was fated to devour Odin at the end of the world at Ragnarok, the "Twilight of the Gods".