Here we are.
Another July for some Lokeans to celebrate Loki, to honor Loki.
Oddly enough, there’s a new show out on cable TV’s Disney+ this month featuring Loki as its central character.
If it were so, it would be the strangest kind, for it is not as if the rest of the world could have known that Lokeans might celebrate Loki in July.
And granted, this new show is based upon the Loki of Marvel (comic book) Universe rather than the Loki of Norse mythology, and yet, I cannot shake this sense of deja-vu.
You see, this new show has caused yet another influx of folks on the Internet, curious to find out more about Loki as a God in the Norse pantheon.
So why the deja-vu? You might be surprised to know that there was a similar influx of folks seeking to join – or otherwise create – online Heathen groups because Marvel Studios’ film, Thor had hit theaters during the summer of 2011.
And that’s how it all began for a lot of folks – myself included! – back in the summer of 2011. Perhaps it was that influx of the Loki-curious that led to the inadvertent creation of ‘July for Loki’ in 2012 in the first place*
What I do recall about that summer in 2012 was how annoyed a lot of Heathen folks were, looking down upon the ‘newbies’ – who were inspired to look into the Norse pantheon by watching Thor– and how arguments arose over the the lack of legitimacy of Marvel vs. academic sources. (And, in regards to Loki, lest we forget, the renewed interest in Loki became a point of contention in existing groups such as the Troth and Asatru Fellowship.)
Do I wish to re-visit those arguments? Personally, that’s not what I’m doing here.
I don’t begrudge folks who watch MCU’s Loki/Avengers for wanting to know more about the Norse deities by reading the Norse myths on their own time. What concerns me is when people fail to differentiate between the Marvel comic book characters and the Norse deities, or worse, consider themselves on par with academic scholars because they’ve read the MCU comic books.
(Besides, if you wanted my opinion, I’d be more apt to suggest reading D’Aulaire’s Norse Mythology than Journey into Mystery #85 for a basic introduction to Loki. But what do I know?)
*I just find it delightful to see ‘July for Loki’ come full circle; another influx of new Lokeans re-invigorating the Pagan/Heathen communities ten years after the last one.
But what’s different in 2021 is that there are so many more books out there about Loki.
Here are some of my favorites:
Loki For You: Getting to Know the God of Mischief, T. Sheil and A. Sheil, Milihistriot Quarterly, Freehold, New Jersey, 2008
Playing with Fire: An Exploration of Loki Laufeyjarson, Dagulf Loptson, Asphodel Press, Hubbardston, MA, 2014
Pagan Portals: Loki Trickster and Transformer, Dagulf Loptson, Moon Books/John Hunt Publishing, Washington, USA. 2020
Worshipping Loki: A Short Introduction, Silence Maestas, 2015.
God in Flames, God in Fetters: Loki’s Role in the Northern Religions, Stephan Grundy, Troth, Incorporated, 2015.