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Iceland Mag

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Construction of a pagan temple to begin in Reykjavík next month

By Staff

  • The first in 1000 years Plans to begin construction of a pagan temple in Reykjavík have been set in motion. Photo/Stefán Karlsson

  • Öskjuhlíð The building on top of the hill is called Perlan, the Pearl, and is located on tanks built for holding geothermal water. Photo/GVA

Plans to begin construction of a heathen temple in Öskjuhlíð hill, Reykjavík, have been set in motion. This will be the first central pagan temple to be built in the Nordic countries in nearly a thousand years, said the alsherjargoði Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson, head priest of the Icelandic Ásatrúarfélag, in an interview with RÚV

Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson, ásatrú, alsherjargoði, ástatrúarfélag

Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson, high-priest. /PhotoStefán Karlsson

The Ásatrúarfélag applied for a plot of land to construct a temple in 2006 and was allotted a piece of land in Öskuhlíð in 2008. The 350 square metres (3767 sq ft) temple will have a vaulted ceiling and seat around 250 people. Its construction will be completed next year.

Read more: 10 interesting facts about the old pagan Ásatrú
Read more: Religion practised by Iceland´s early Viking settlers

The Icelandic Ásatrúarfélagið is an Icelandic Germanic Neopagan religious organization founded in 1972. The organization conducts ceremonies such as marriages, name-giving ceremonies, and burials.

According to former high-priest, Jónína K. Berg, ásatrú is a polytheistic belief and its followers “are a part of the earth and not its master.”

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