Overview and History
Neo-Norse mythology is split into two factions, the Vanir Church and the Aesir Church. It recognizes the existence of and worships the Aesir and Vanir gods of Norse Mythology. Norse Mythology is distinct from any other polytheistic religion in that it recognizes the existence of two separate pantheon's of gods, each pantheon governing a different side of human nature. The pantheon of Aesir gods mostly govern war, honor and valor while the Vanir pantheon governs the principles of peace, prosperity and nature.
In the 22nd century many colonists from the countries of Sweden, Norway and Denmark began practicing and studying old norse traditions. Old-Norse culture began to grow as people saw it as a way to differentiate themselves from Earth cultures. By the 23rd century, with Norse culture popular among most Scandinavian cultures Norse religion began to be practiced.
Around 2353 Neo-Norse religion began to split into two distinct churches. The churches were the Aesir church and the Vanir church. The Aesir church resembles traditional norse much more closely. They recognize Odin as the all-father and worship the Aesir gods as all powerful. The Vanir church on the other hand recognize Njord as their chief deity. They believe in peace and prosperity through worship of the Vanir. By the 25th century the Vanir and Aesir churches were roughly equal in power over several worlds and had a combined influence equal to that of Christianity. Differences in ideologies caused tensions between the two main churches however they still collaborated together on many missionary and humanitarian projects and the churches were close until relations began to erode during the Second Age.Throughout the Second Age branches of the Aesir church began anti-Republic teachings. Several Aesir worlds rebelled against the Republic and Odin became a common patron god among pirate shis. Some of the mid and late rebellions during the second age were from Aesir worlds. The Vanir influenced worlds on the other hand remained neutral in most wars. They either secluded themselves in isolation or provided supplies and refuge to anyone in need. During a time worlds were dying and wars were fought Vanir practitioners became rich and prosperous. Aesir practitioners became cold, hard and ruthless soldiers. By the time the Second Age came to a close the Vanir and Aesir churches were so different that no collaboration was possible.
During the early 31st century, with the fall of the URSS still in recent history many practitioners in the Neo-Norse churches wanted to flee from the crowded core-worlds and begin new, Nordic kingdoms. In the year 3034, explorers from both the Vanir and Aesir churches began exploring the Carina Nebula. In 3046 the planet of Vannaheimr was discovered. By 3051 the planet was colonized and the Kingdom of Vannaheimr was born. In 3055 the Vanaheimr became the seat for the Vanir Church and construction of Kirkju Sjo, the great temple of the sea, began. The temple was completed in the year 3103.
In 3042 Aesir explorers discovered the moon now known as Valhalla. The moon soon became the center for the Aesir church and the capital world of the Valhallan Kingdom. The church constructed a great temple as well known as Odin's Hall. The Aesir temple was completed in 3092.
In the year 4532 a Neoxian raiding fleet began encroaching on the Carina Nebula thus beginning the Neoxian-Norse war. The fleet burned and annhiallated several minor Vanir and Aesir colonies. Neoxian terrorist attacks became a serious threat. In 4536 Vanir Security thwarted a terrorist plot to nuke the Kirkju Sjo, the beating heart of the Vanir church. Later that year a nuclear warhead did detonate in Valhalla, destroying Odin's hall and crippling the Aesir church's economy.
This series of attacks brought the two Norse cultures together again for the first time in 2000 years. The Vanir recognized that they didn't have the military might to oppose the Neoxian fleet. The Aesir didn't have the money or the logistics and were trying to recover the the crippling terrorist attacks. The Vanir church offered the Aesir economic relief if the Aesir warships joined forces with the Vanir security. The Neoxians were driven from the Carina Nebula by the year 4540 and the Norse churches have closely collaborated ever since.