Heathens, rejoice: Thor's hammer now approved for headstones


Thor raises his hammer to Loki. (Wikimedia Commons)

Did you know that there are almost 60 symbols to choose from for a Veterans Affairs headstone?

This week, the list got longer, with the addition of Mjölnir, otherwise known as the Hammer of Thor.

That’s right. Heathens, followers of the ancient Nordic religions of Ásatrú and Odinism, can now display their own religious emblem on veteran headstones.


The Open Halls Project, an organization for Heathens in the military community, spent two years commissioning the Department of Veterans to get the hammer approved, according to a VA blog.

If you’re a follower of Odinism, would you get it on your headstone? And if your faith isn’t already covered by the VA, might you look into having the emblem added to the list?


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  1. Ralph Recchia on

    I find nothing wrong with any form of religious symbol on the va head stones.. We supposedly fight and defend religious freedoms, so by not allowing a person their choose of religious symbol defeats that purpose.

  2. Jim Koenig, 1SG, U.S. Army, Ret on

    Yes, I agree that Heathens have the right to have whatever they wish on their gravestones, but I certainly wouldn’t want to be in their shoes on Judgment Day. The Bible says that The Lord Jesus Christ is the only way to Heaven. I respect the Heathen’s rights, but they are in for a huge surprise.

  3. 1SG, with respect, we believe that we will be going into the halls of our ancestors after death. I respect your desire to follow Jesus into heaven, but I’d rather be able to see my mother and my great-grandparents again.

    Thank you Army Times for posting this article. Its been a long battle, and its not over yet, we still have to get DoD to approve our religious preference.

  4. This is a great first step of recognition…
    However we are still being STALLED by the COC, Armed Forces Chaplains Board of Faith and Diversity, and the DOD Undersecratary.
    We have petitioned, written letters, and addressed our need for official recognition and respect of Asatru and Heathenry and Odinist in the G1/OMPF/IPERMS/ERB realm of religious preference.
    We who are Heathen can be of Asatru, Vanatru, Odinist, Recoon or Folkish… Currently our only option when we go to our G1 or S1 is a blank look and upon further investigation we can only choose the Troth. That is like saying you are Southern Babtist if you are really just a Christian. Get it?
    It’s a religion of Values, Ethics and Virtues. 9 Noble Virtues that Service Men and Women should find very familar:1) Courage. 2) Truth. 3) Honor. 4) Fidelity. 5) Discipline. 6) Hospitality. 7) Industriousness. 8) Self Reliance. 9) Perseverance.
    It is a Warrior’s Way of Life…
    When I am dead… Lay me in a mound… Raise a stone for all to see, Runestones to my Memory!- Amon Amarth
    I am bold enough to say put a Vaulknot on mine!

  5. I am a follower of Odin, I have Mjölnir tattooed on my arm and I also wear it around my neck… there is without a shadow of a doubt in my mind that Mjölnir will be on my headstone

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  7. Sven Cuestas on

    As a Heathen and a Vet, I thank the Gods, (yes, plural) this has been passed. As for Heaven… My boots will guide me to Asgaard. You can believe in your book (nothing wrong with that Kristjian) and we shall keep the Old Ways alive as well. Hail the All Father and my fellow Ásatrú!

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