Despite more than 80 percent of Danes associating themselves with the Evangelical Lutheran Church, otherwise known as the Church of Denmark, it’s safe to say that Denmark is largely a secular society.
Every year fewer and fewer Danes attend weekly church services, and more people than ever before identify themselves as atheists or agnostics. While this is a trend echoed in many Western societies, Denmark and the rest of Scandinavia have a long history of pagan beliefs, with Christianity’s initial adoption based as much on pragmatism as anything else.
Before the arrival of Christianity, Denmark followed the religion that we refer to today as Norse mythology, a unique and distinct blend of beliefs with a complicated system of associations. In Norse mythology, there are nine worlds, each connected by the world tree, ‘Yggdrasil’. With a host of gods including Odin, Thor and Loki, the religion is characterised by its myths and legends and focuses on man’s quest to achieve glory or honour in this world in order to be accepted into the next.