One of the best ways to know our present and our world is through the study of the past. If we observe what our roots are, we will open the door to many responses linked to the current world. For example, reading Viking proverbs about life, about death, about the future of society and people…
Many consider the Viking society as a group of savage pirates who only thought about war, looting and death. However, despite the violence of their groups, they also counted and generated great sources of knowledge and their proverbs are a good example of this.
In fact, beyond the Viking proverbs, their societies created a powerful iconography and legend that was exploited centuries later by talents such as the writer J.R.R. Tolkien, who relied on his stories to create Middle Earth or Stan Lee and his comic book characters now known to all thanks to cinema.
Excellent Viking proverbs to learn to live better
Beyond the unfair summary that points to them as simple violent plunderers, history tells us that they were good merchants and artisans. In addition, they created beautiful jewels with as much facility as they invented fables and histories that have arrived until our days, because their religion and iconography was very rich and complex, something that is noted in its proverbs.
“If you eat cherries with the powerful, you risk having the bones rain against your nose.”
A saying very used by many people says ‘tell me who you are with and I will tell you who you are’. The Vikings were already aware of this. Dangerous friendships, especially with powerful people, could have dire consequences for the humble, the weak, the one who had all to lose at the moment of truth.
You have to be cautious
“Before entering a place, look where you can go.”
Besides great warriors, the Vikings were wise, and that made them foresighted. That’s why, when you access a place, enter a conversation, get a new job or start a business, to put several simple examples, always keep an escape plan. Look well how you can leave any place, space, job, business, etc., if you do not want to find yourself in a dead end street.
“If you can find a loyal friend and want to be useful, open your heart, send gifts and travel often to see him.”
The Viking civilization greatly valued friendship, camaraderie and companionship. From their proverbs we observe the importance that they gave to the care of the support circle understanding the value that it represents.
“There is no better baggage to carry than sanity and a clear mind. In distant lands it is more useful than gold and it takes the poor out of trouble.”
We also find that the Viking proverbs remind us of the importance of being sensible and coherent. Not all the money in the world can be as useful as the use of intelligence and wisdom to get out of any problem or mess, even in the confines of the world, because this civilization had some of the most daring sailors, able to reach the coasts Americans before Christopher Columbus.
Live the life
“Live with hope while you are alive, the agile always comes forward. I saw the flames of a mansion, but in the door lay a dead man.”
We must also remember that the Vikings were lovers of good life, good food and enjoyment. For them, life was a way forward and death a natural leap, for the Valhalla of the warriors awaited them there.
Better not mock
“The house of the one that mocks, finishes burning.”
We can interpret this Viking proverb in different ways. On the one hand, it speaks of prudence. On the other, it reminds us of that saying that says ‘if you see the beard of your neighbor burn, put yours to soak’. Better to be prudent and fair in life.
Best bird in hand…
“Better free bird than captive king”.
We end with a wise proverb that more than one has used in its various meanings and formulas. It reminds us that in order to preserve rights or shape wishes, many times we will have to renounce others. Thus, it is probable that on many occasions we are tempted to renounce freedom, to sacrifice it momentarily. This, the last of the Viking proverbs, invites us to reflect before doing so.