Viking Tattoos: Nordic and Norse Pagan Symbols of Spirituality (Paperback)
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COLOUR EDITION In recent decades popular culture has rediscovered the Viking Age and North Germanic Paganism with fresh eyes. From the pirates and sea raiders known as Vikings, to the fierce warriors called Berserkers, and the wider Norse or Nordic people as a whole, symbols played an important role in daily life and spirituality. Today we find these symbols visually eye catching and their meanings fascinating. People all over the world are finding meaning in these symbols that resonate with their personality, identity, and spiritual beliefs. They are a representation of a thought or an idea, from a single line to an ever increasingly complex symmetry of lines, circles, intersecting lines, and bold striking angles. Perhaps one of the most popular of these symbols is the Vegv sir, one of the many Galdrastafir (praying or chanting staves) that appeared in Iceland after its settlement by Norse people in the late 9th century, but there are many more. Preserved manuscripts contain a wealth of these magical symbols drawn by hand in personal hand books. In some cases there are accompanying sentences explaining their meanings and instruction on their use, and in many cases the very name of the symbol told them all they needed to know, with their uses open to interpretation. For the last 120 years, runes have been misused, misrepresented, and misinterpreted to fit into systems of propaganda for extreme and objectionable political agendas. This form of cultural appropriation has done great damage in obscuring and twisting the original and true meanings of the runes. This second edition includes an extra chapter that explains this history and sets the record straight for the reader to make informed choices. The magic of the Norse people worked because they believed that it worked. They believed in the process of signalling and communicating their intentions and desirable outcomes to the forces around them, projecting them into the universe, and having the confidence and belief to make things happen. This book explores these symbols and presents them to the reader for their consideration as ideas for tattoos or symbols for personal talismanic magic.