Most people will know that Agni is a Vedic Fire-God, and indeed perhaps the most important god in the Rig Veda since he appears in so many stanzas of these sacred texts. His name gives us many words connected to fire - ignite, ignition etc., these coming through Greek to Latin and into our language much later. Agni was one of three important gods in the most ancient Vedas -
Agni - Fire,
Vayu - Air,
Soma - Water.
As you can see these are three of the 'elements' as they are termed, the other being 'Earth', and also 'Spirit' when we see things in a non-materialistic form. When looking at these gods we are looking at the most ancient form of the gods, before we find the gods being seen in much more numerous form. Also, in doing so we should consider that Norse Mythology has a very similar idea in the form of a more ancient triple-god form -
Logi - Fire,
Kari - Air,
AEgir - Water.
These are very ancient forms since they are said to be the offspring of Fornjotr, also known as Mistblindi, a Frost-Giant said to have been born after the 'Flood', a term denoting a very, very ancient time in pre-history. We should not see Logi as Loki, since these two are pitted together in the realm of Utgard-Loki, where Loki loses to Logi, the latter representing Wild-Fire.
Now, in at least one source Agni was cursed into being a god of destruction by fire, but was released somewhat and thus only a small part of his role was to destroy by fire. Nevertheless, he does have this destructive aspect which should not be overlooked. So, we have a very similar triple-god form in both the ancient Vedas and the later Norse Myths. We should bear in mind here that the Joten or 'Giants' are very primal chaotic forces which is borne out when we find Logi as the God of Wild-Fire, which can be a very destructive form of fire. It may well be that Loki was a later form of this who held to this destructive and chaotic aspect since he was of Joten-stock.
Agni has three sons, all of whom embrace some aspect of fire and thus seem to be different aspects of Agni -
Pavaka - Electric Fire (Lightning),
Pavamana - Friction-Fire,
Suchi - Fire of the Sun.
Agni is also a god who is protector of the home, and this was most likely the role of Ingwe since we find the inglenook at the side of the hearth which is the central fire of the home. Ingwe, like Agni, must have been seen as the 'protective fire' of the hearth, representing also the Sun at the Sacred Centre.
Gods do not just 'disappear', so these ancient god-forms would appear over and over again throughout time in slightly varied form. Agni has often been linked to Hama-Heimdall, both being born of Nine Mothers (Wave-Maidens), or in the case of Agni sometimes Seven Mothers. Hama is the god who brings the Caste System to mankind, the Sacred Law of the Gods that brings order through a hierarchical system.
One interesting thing here is the birth of Hama/Agni through 'Nine Wave-Maidens', since we can see this as 'waves' of water, or we can also see this as 'sound-waves'. Pythagoras deemed that the planets made sounds which he deemed the 'Music of the Spheres'. In Norse Mythology creation came into being through sound (Aurgalmir), and was destroyed by sound (Bargalmir). In many 'primitive' societies the name is never given because the knowledge of the name infers that it could be used to harm or destroy the individual. The name is a 'sound'.
Not so long ago it was revealed that NASA had discovered the 'Sound of the Sun', and true to form a number of YouTube videos appeared stating that NASA had discovered that this was the 'Sound of Om'. Although NASA never said anything of the sort this became 'fact' to some people. In reality what NASA had done was to convert certain waves into sound, compressed this, and thus allowed it to become a 'sound' audible to the human ear. The first small section could be seen as 'Om', although it is far from a clear sound of 'Om'. But this is only a very small section of the sounds, and should be considered in light of the manipulation done by NASA.
Ymir is the First Giant, and he is the equivalent to Augalmir in that he may be considered to be the 'Sound of Creation'. We can find the Vedic 'OM' in our English Rune-Row as 'YR'; this must represent Ymir. The sound 'y' in these should be sounded as the French 'u' in 'lune', and our English 'lunar'; in Old English the sound of the word 'cyning' ('king') is 'kooning',and this is how the Yr-Rune should be sounded. The alternative spelling of 'OM' is 'AUM' which is the same as AU-galmr, but it should also be noted that the 'g' is often pronounced as a 'y' (as in Gotland which is 'Yot-land'). Thus 'Au-yalmr' can be truncated into 'Om' quite easily. Aum becomes Amun (Egypt) and Amen (Biblical).
In Tolkien's Mythology Ingwe is the High Lord of the Elves (Vanyar), the Vanyar being also called Ingwer based upon a root *inga meaning 'top' or 'highest point'. The name Ingwe stemming from ing- ('first') and *we ('man'), thus meaning 'The First Man'. So, where is the link between the Elves (Shining Ones or Illuminated Ones) and Man? To find this we need to go back to Agni.
One of the names of Agni is Angiras (Ang-iras) which straightway reminds us of Ing/Ingwe. The Angiras were the Seven Rishis who were seers and wise men of very ancient times (I have covered this before). These are Vedic Rishis (Sages) who had Divine Knowledge, were mediators (messengers) between Gods and Men, and the first of the Fire-Gods (Agni-Devas). There is an interesting aspect to the name 'Angiras' which is a female name in Hinduism, and which one source gives the meaning - 'Of the mythical Luminous Race'. This, I have to add, is not the usual interpretation of the name, but I feel that it should perhaps not be dismissed since (as we shall see) it has a ring of truth.
The Angiras were first used in the Vedas in connection with the coming of the Dawn and the 'Cows', two mythical ideas which are always connected. The Dawn is the Goddess Ushas (Eostra/Ostara), and the Cows are the Rays of the Sun in one sense. This was also a title of Agni as Agni Angiras. The word ang is merely a nasalised form of ag, spoken through the nose as well as the mouth. This is interesting in that the form 'ag' is thus spoken through the mouth, whilst the form 'ang' is spoken through the nose ('n') and the mouth ('g'). This is also true of Agni' but here the sounds are reversed - mouth & nose. Interestingly, the word A-GN-I contains the Root *gn which (like *kn) refers to knowledge, wisdom and links to the Ken-Rune.
The Angiras are symbolic of a force, an energy, indeed they are referred to as the Sons of Force and the Sons of Energy. This links directly to the god Ing since the suffix -ing gives the meaning of some form of force or action, like 'go-ing', runn-ing', 'mov-ing', 'climb-ing', 'rac-ing' or 'do-ing'. The suffix suggests that the word is symbolic of action, movement, and thus power and energy. There are certain Vedic words connected to Agni and the roots of the name -
agni - fire,
angati - fire,
angara - a burning coal,
angiras - flaming/glowing/shining/brilliant.
Agni and the Angiras symbolise the force or energy of action, of movement, of the light - these are the Forces of Light. The Angiras are the Luminous Sages, for they are seers, men of knowledge, wisdom and understanding, the Forces of Light that wage the Eternal War against the 'Sons of Darkness and Matter'. The Sanskrit suri means 'seer' and is of the same root as Surya the Hindu Sun-God. Agni Angiras represents both Knowledge and Action. In fact, Agni Angiras, and thus Ingwe, represent Divine Consciousness - Light & Power working in harmony.
Agni and the Angiras are also associated with the following -
The Dawn-Goddess Ushas.
The Rays of the Dawn.
The Maruts - gods of storm and the lightning who unite within themselves the power of Vayu (Woden - Air), the wind, the breath, the Word.
Force of Agni as the Divine Sage or Seer.
Eternal Youth of Agni.
The Word which is the wisdom of the seer.
Indra in his role as the Lightning-Bolt that destroys the 'Demons of Darkness'.
According to Sri Aurobindo the Divine Word is the Satya Mantra or Arka, the latter sometimes being used for the Sun, the Word of Illumination. The word Arka I have just covered in the latest 'Sword of Wayland' magazine which has just been published. It relates to Arya/Aryan and 'ka' is the 'soul' in Egyptian Lore. We could see this as the Aryan Spirit.
The wife of Agni is Swaha and from this name we can gleam certain concepts of interest -
The Aryan Root *swar means -
To murmur, to buzz, to hum, to speak. (This gives one meaning of 'musical notes' when it is used as a girl's name.)
To shine, to glow, to burn (relating to Agni and also giving the Gujurati meaning to the girl's name Swar - 'Self-shining'.)
To swing, to bind, also to hang by a string, to swing.
The Sanskrit swa means 'self', and we are thus moving into the realms of higher consciousness. In Tibet the word svaha means 'so be it' rooted in su ('well') and ah ('to call').
Ingwe is not just a 'God of the English' but he is the power and force behind our evolutionary drive, our drive to achieve higher states of consciousness, and in this he links to Woden. Woden is named after wod or od which relates to divine inspiration, ecstasy, divine madness. But are told that he gives ond which is 'Vital Breath', since (like Vayu) he is associated with air and with spirit. Ingwe seems to combine the roles of Fire and Air, two elements that need each other since fire cannot be kindled without oxygen in the air.
Agni is the 'Messenger of the Gods'; this is interesting in view of the Greek term angel which means 'messenger'; the Greek 'gg' is pronounced 'ng', thus Igg and Ing are likely the same. The 'Angles' are thus the 'Messengers of the Gods', they are the go-between for Ingwe and Man, but also the go-between for the communication of Man with the Gods. This is the exact role of Agni in Vedic Lore.
Ang - AEng - Eng - Ing - Ong - OEng - Ung
These give us the earlier forms of Ingwe in these islands - Angus, AEngus, Oengus, and they show the importance of this god-force, and that he was the God of At-al-land in very early times.
Ingwe is the force that supplies the Lightning-Bolt for Thunor (Indra), and Thunor is the god who is primarily concerned with waging the Eternal War against the Joten - the Forces of Chaos and Darkness. Ingwe is the God of Light, the God of Illumination, the God who is the door to Higher Consciousness. He is both knowledge and action; he combines the two forces needed today to strike back against the Sons of Darkness and Matter - Knowledge & Action. There is no point in gaining knowledge, and thus wisdom, and thus understanding ('see-ing') if we do not take some form of action. Thus the idea put forward by Jonathon Bowden of the creation of a 'New Man' based upon the original idea by Lord Byron - the Cultured Thug! I would put it a little differently and term this the Thinking Warrior combining the man who has knowledge, wisdom and understanding but who has the ability to fight when necessary.
The Lightning-Bolt symbol is connected to both Thunor and Woden; it is symbolic of the breaking through the barriers of consciousness, breaking through into a state of higher consciousness. Remember - this is the Age of Ingwe and in these times we can achieve an evolutionary jump in which mankind can break through into a higher state of consciousness. And thus defeat the Powers of Darkness and Matter.