There are twenty four pathways which connect the Nine Worlds.
There are twenty four Runes in the Elder Futhark
The "Eagle" is at the highest branches of Yggdrasil
"Nidhog" is the dragon at the root of Yggdrasil, and
"Ratatosk" is the
who communicates between "Nidhog" and the "Eagle"
The notion of "Nine Worlds" is archetypal - compare
"...These comprise the nine most important prophecies
of the Hopis, connected with the creation of the nine
worlds: the three previous worlds on which we lived,
the present Fourth World, the three future worlds we
have yet to experience, and the world of Taiowa, the
Creator, and his nephew, Sotuknang."
[From The Book of the Hopi by Frank Waters]
The Norse legend posits:
Wotan (Odin) tied himself to the World Tree, Yggdrasil, and remained
there for nine days and nights, whereupon the Runes were revealed to
his mind. It is my opinion that "Wotan" is the "self." The World Tree,
then, represents the nine realms - comprising the known, the unknown,
and the unknowable - where the "self" finds its existence. The Runes, like
all earthly oracles, are timely archetypal signposts erected along the way.
Most cultures tell a variation on this tale of discovery. World religions,
the Tarot, the I Ching, various icons, mandalas of all kinds, and the Runes
are scripted archetypes: objectified myths, psycho-neurological "strange
attractors." These strange attractors are general attempts at designing
trans-temporal, hyperdimensional signposts, which, while marking our life's
passage, help keep hope alive so that we will recognize them when we pass
by them again, awakening us a little more to the vastness of our mysterious
depths. We ourselves designed them in an arbitrary fashion according to our
own evolving abilities to document our perceptive,
during specific, historical eras. As such, they are not static archetypes,
but are amenable to individual interpretation and expansion. To address them
in any other spirit would undoubtedly be folly. --