VIII The Chariot
THOR, the god of thunder, was tall and strong. His hair was red. In moments of anger sparks would fly like lightning from his beard. Mjolnir was his hammer, Crusher its name. He hurled it at his enemies the Frost Giants, with great destructive power. Howler hard or far he threw it, it would return safely to his hand.
Thor was considered to be a benevolent deity and was worshiped widely throughout the Northern kingdoms. His popularity continued well into Christian times. Talismans in the shape of small hammers have been found along side crucifixes on sites of Viking and Anglo-Saxon occupation. Thor lived in the hall of Bilskinir (Lightning), in the realm Thrudvang, where the peasants were received after death. Thor was the god of the ordinary man, which probably explains his great popularity.
When the storm clouds gathered, the rumble and roar of thunder was thought to be the sound of the wheels of his chariot. Drawn by the two dark goats. Tanngniostr (tooth cracker) and Tanngrisnr (tooth gnasher), he traversed the heavens. Sparks would constantly fly from the teeth and hoofs of his goats.
- INTERPRETATION Progress; success made through endeavour; firm control of one's circumstances, self confidence; good health.
- REVERSED MEANING Loss of control only partial or temporary success; lack of organizational skills; imbalance; inability to adjust.
- THE RUNE Thorn, symbolizing the god Thor. Help or self help; self-protection and self-preservation.