In mysticism of most cultures the concept of tools plays a major part of the application of metaphysical energies. We are by our nature a tool using species and the nature of tools lends to certain mental linking that is to a degree undeniable. No matter how resilient, survivalist, or unconventional your mysticism is you have been using tools since you were very young and they have a place within your mental structure. We are not alone in this though as The Gods in Norse Mythology too are tool using beings. In fact the Gods are not nearly as powerful or capable without their tools. It is with this that a major case for tool usage in Norse Mysticism can be made. Today we will exemplify this by looking at Thor.
The Most Well Known Tool:
Of all the tools used through history the hammer may be the most well known, easily identifiable, and easily understood tool to any human being. A hammer can drive nails into boards, open hard fruit, combined with a wedge to split wood, forge metal, destroy an enemy, or in the case of Norse Mythology rebuild the World. Mjolnir is the great hammer of Norse Mythology yet often people forget the nature of this tool.
We all know that Thor wields the mighty mallet to great devastation, and after Ragnarok his sons wield it to rebuild the world. This mighty weapon is necessary to how Thor does his job. Without Mjolnir Thor is a powerful, strong, amazing God but with it he is able to “smite as hard as he desired, whatsoever might be before him, and the hammer would not fail; and if he threw it at anything, it would never miss, and never fly so far as not to return to his hand;” - The Prose Edda, Arthur Gilchrist Brodeur Translation.
Consider this then, without his hammer he can NOT smite as hard as he might desire. There is a limit to his strength. Perhaps this has to do with mystical power and how much may be channeled through a living body? Potentially it is a simple mechanical understanding of force. One can only strike a tree with their fist so hard, or a rock, before that fist might give way. Even with the building up of strength eventually a material will be found stronger than even the mightiest hand.
Further this weapon will not break, will not miss when thrown, and never fly so far that he can not regain it. The properties of this weapon represent strength but further they represent a channel of energies. When working with extremely powerful magickal energies the body can take a toll. For the Gods this means the need for a weapon that will both handle the force of energies as well as extend those abilities. The key point following this though is the hammer's great advantageous abilities. It is a specifically designed weapon with an intent. It is meant to extend its wielders power in battle and it does so immeasurably well. The ability to never miss and to return to his hand are further examples of mystical properties.
This is very similar to in many ways the wand in traditional magicks. Often a wand is used to channel energies so that they will “never miss” or to draw back that which is cast out. Mjolnir much like a wand is an extension of its wielders power, an amplifier, and a targeting aid. Further Mjolnir is a one handed weapon, suitable for a single handed grip very similar to that of a wand.
Without These Thor Would Not Be So Powerful:
Anyone who has played video games has come across an item that increases the strength of the wearer. In truth such items may or may not be feasible and we have seen many enchantments that seem to lend a small aid in the real world. That said the concept of a power enhancing item in magick is a major part of it. Be it ritual robes, talismans, rings, or other such adornments there are tools prepared and used to amplify a practitioners power multiple times over. Arguably the first major strength enhancer though was Megingjord though. This powerful implement was known as “The Power Belt” in old Norse.
Such was the power that Megingjord multiplied its wearers strength by two times. This may not sound like much but we must take two things into consideration. The first of these was the weight of Mjolnir its self, the second was the sheer strength of Thor. The weight of Mjolnir made it particularly difficult to wield, even by Thor himself, the example I tend to cite to people is to imagine you were wielding a 10lb Warhammer. This would be an unwieldly item at best, most hammers are under 5lbs, and even if you were considerably strong you couldn't truly deliver your full might with such a weapon. Taking this into account Megingjord's amplification of Thor's strength effectively reduces the impact of the weight of the hammer by half. This allows Thor to truly strike with all his might!
Let us also take into account the secondary layer of what Megingjord does though. By amplifying Thor's considerable strength it gives the great God much more in the way of options. Like any other talisman that grants increased power with more power many more things that are possible. Obstacles that can not be surpassed can be easily moved, barriers can be punched through that would otherwise be indestructible, and it is easier to throw ourselves into dangerous situations. Megingjord gives the God of Thunder greater power, but like any good talisman it gives him power in a way that gives him options.
Jarngreipr, or Iron Grippers, are the “Irong Gloves” or possibly gauntlets that Thor himself fields. These gloves are necessary for Thor to wield the full power of Mjolnir. They represent in mysticism the concept of grounding, control, and protection from our own power. As a talisman they are indispensable to their wielder. They provide Thor with the ability to use his own considerable power, the power of Mjolnir, and the power of the great belt Megingjord without fear of backlash to himself. Often times we sage, use incense, or other methods of clean