Ragnarok

imageRagnarok 2014 heralds apocalypse on 22 February. Today is the end of the world. This ancient prediction of apocalypse by the Vikings, the people of the Norse culture (793 to 1066 AD) in Scandinavia, is called Ragnarok. According to Norse mythology, Ragnarok, also called the fall of the Gods, is the catastrophic battle between all the Viking gods – namely Odin, Thor, Tyr, Freyr, Heimdallr and Loki, following which the world will be submerged in water. Ragnarok 2014 coincides with the finale of York’s 30th Jorvik Viking Festival, one of the largest festivals in Europe, which celebrates the Viking heritage of the ancient English city of York. The festival organisers define Ragnarok as a prediction about the end of the world in Viking folklore in which a series of events, including the gods’ battle and natural disasters, will destroy the nine worlds that make up the universe. “Ragnarok will begin when the wolf, Fenrir, son of Loki, breaks free of his imprisonment. This will lead to a chain reaction of events including the Midgard snake Jormungand rising from the sea and a wolf devouring the sun,” the organisers explained. “Everything will come to a head in a huge battle that draws in the Gods, men and all the races of the nine worlds.” Legend has it that the events of Ragnarok will cause death of all the Norse gods. In fact, the Norse word Ragnarok has been interpreted as the final destiny of the gods. Norse folklore suggests that all the sequence of events comprising the Ragnarok was predicted by the Norse god Odin himself. Odin prophesied the events after he acquired wisdom to foresee the future by hanging himself from a tree.

 

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