Ragnarok and Reincarnation in Norse Mythology

European Origins

  1. The End of the World
    1. Before the End: Fimbulwinter
    2. The Great Battle
    3. Rebirth and Reincarnation
  2. Rebirth in Germanic Mythology

Rebirth is a fascinating concept that is usually associated with the religious beliefs of Asia and not with Ancient European Mythology. But surprisingly, there are some mentions of reincarnation in western myth and legend. Could this be an indication of an underlying Indo-European connection and a widespread belief among the Proto-Indo-Europeans? To find out, ironically, we will have to start at the end of all things in Norse Mythology.

The End of the World

Ragnarok describes the end of the world as we know it, culminating in the epic clash between Gods and Giants and the subsequent destruction of heaven and earth. Other than in popular belief, Giants in Germanic legends are not just humongous humanoids but vicious monsters like Jormungandr, the enormous snake that wraps around the entire world…

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