Good advice, actually:
“There is no way to suppress change…not even in heaven; there is only a choice between a way of living which allows constant, if gradual alterations and a way of living that combines great control and cataclysmic upheavals. Those who panic and bind the trickster choose the latter path. It would be better to learn to play with him, better especially to develop skills (cultural, spiritual, artistic) that allow some commerce with accident, and some acceptance of the changes that contingency will always engender.”
— Lewis Hyde, Trickster Makes This World
This lovely poem was shared by a friend on my social media feed this morning, and though I was skeptical that its words ‘could change one’s life,’ I will grant that its overall message is rather profound one…and personally relevant.
THE GUEST HOUSE
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
– Jelaluddin Rumi,
Translation from The Essential Rumi by Coleman Barks
Some of my long-time readers have begun to notice that my devotional practices seem to have shifted a bit.
A major feature of this surprising change has manifested in that while I still work primarily with Loki, I have begun some major work with Odin.
(Yes. Believe me, no one was more surprised than I was concerning that change – trust me on that.)
The bulk of this work – regarding runes, astral travel, and energy movement – often occurs somewhere within the liminal hours, especially as Tuesday bleeds into Wednesday….
Which lately, has led me to have some rather restless nights, full of much sleep interruption.
Despite how I feel about that, it is the way it has been for the past several weeks now.
So, while walking one of my dogs this AM, this song came up:
….as I was thinking thoughts on how it’s been going concerning working with the Two of Them, and I realized that there are several aspects to these interactions that are expressed rather well through this bit o’ pandoramancy.
They *do* seem to know just what I need
And They might just have the thing…
because They *both* know what I’d pay to feel.
And… since I’m often prone to being a touch melodramatic when I’m sleep-deprived, I have been known to ask Them to – y’know –
put me out of my misery…
The suicide king being Odin
and you know the drama queen just has to be Loki.
I found this article by Erin Pavlina this afternoon, and I thought that I would share.
It explains rather succinctly a connection that I’ve been struggling with understanding concerning karma and the Universe.
Mostly, this article inadvertently answers why it is probable that we as spiritual human beings keep running into the same situations in life over and over, and what that has to do with karma.
The part that hit me the most profoundly was this:
“Karma is about being given the opportunity to change your vibration and attract something different. No one is going to inflict that upon you, but the universe will bring you ample opportunities to choose a different path.
So if you’re holding out hope that something bad will happen to another person, you’re better off releasing, forgiving, and moving on, otherwise you will attract new opportunities that involve you needing to forgive someone. Are you catching my drift here?
If you are constantly wishing negative things will happen to those who wrong you, the universe will constantly bring you people who wrong you so you can continue wishing negative things will happen to them. That’s your vibration. That’s your karma. That’s what the universe thinks you want since that’s what you’re always thinking about.
Karma is not punishment, it’s not revenge, it’s not justice. Karma is the universe giving you opportunities to alter your vibration. Do with that what you will.”
How this relates to my present situation is that I have wondered for quite a while now why I keep getting thrown into situations wherein I keep finding myself feeling echoes of the past – people I’ve hurt, people that have hurt me, and the corresponding situations that I would rather not think about.
Perhaps in focusing on the pain of what I’ve been through, I am constantly re-opening the wounds rather than doing anything to heal them.
Perhaps this is what brought Him to me: my latest spiritual work – in working with the God that I Had Promised Myself that I Would Never Work With – I have been forced to confront all the reasons why I had refused to work with Him for so long.
I began to see that the only way to move forward was to confront the lesson that kept being presented to me over and over in seeing His face, and the echoes of that premise: If you expect a monster, you will get a monster.
Yes, He is still capable of being a monster.
But the only way to move forward in my spiritual practice is to engage with Him.
And I am engaging with Him.
The only way out is to go through.
Then, everything’s *not* fine.
2016 has been a rollercoaster..and I don’t think that it has just been a rollercoaster for me.
Look at the rest of the world, I suppose.
It would seem that everyone is struggling with something…not just me.
Not just my struggles.
I haven’t been posting, mainly because I’ve been keeping to the relative safety of writing in my notebooks, because 2016 has brought so many changes to my life that when I look back upon where I was, emotionally and spiritually, on this day in 2015, I am agog at how much has changed in my relationships, my attitudes, my writing….hell, even my devotional/spiritual practices.
As a matter of fact, so much has changed in my devotional practice that my head is sort of… spinning.
It’s been an interesting year, to say the least.
At the end of 2015, I was coming out of a major depressive episode.
Certain aspects of my life were either stagnant or evolving in a direction that I didn’t want to travel. I felt stuck and sad and angry.
I had decided to end relationships with several persons whom I’d come to over-value so much that I’d thought of these folks as the basis of my spiritual community….so deciding to cut ties with those friends felt like cutting ties with my sense of community.
As well, I felt stagnant in my spiritual relationships. I needed something to change but I didn’t know what or how
Though I had hope for 2016, I’d never in a million years expected the changes that were in store for me regarding my marriage, my circle of friends (or whom I would have considered my circle of friends), how I’d come to spend my free time,the people, places and things I would come to value, the skills that I would develop or the way that my devotional/spiritual practices would be completely overhauled.
Yes, my spiritual practices would suffer a complete overhaul in 2016.
And that is why I have chosen WorldBreaker as the title of this post.
Because, oddly enough, in retrospect, one of the only constants I see in the pattern of 2015 to 2016 was …Loki
And yes, that is true…I am working with Loki now.*
Though in late December 2015, I’d even gone as far as to pack up all of my altars -including His – because I was feeling disconnected from all of Them.
I was throwing what was essentially a tantrum of enormous spiritual proportions.
I was trying so hard to feel and to do, and yet all I could feel was an immense sense of frustration and disconnection.
I was feeling what I thought that I was supposed to feel and I was doing what I thought was the ‘work’ that I needed to do…
And yet I was ….not.
Though I will admit what I did feel was this:
“ I wish you all had one neck and I had my hands around it.”
(Those, by the way, are the second to last words of convicted murderer Carl Panzram, just before he was executed at Leavenworth Penitentiary in 1930)
(Do you see the WorldBreaker yet?)
Because that, my friends, is how I felt (inwardly, of course) about the whole business of not just the day to day functionings of my mundane life, but my spiritual life as well.
In late 2015, I definitely felt that if Life were a person, I wanted to choke that motherfucker out…and hard.
But I am not a violent person, so I could not even begin to guess where those feelings of rage were coming from at the time.
But I do…now.
(Yep. That was me…being upset. And oh…not working on my shit. But boy, did I think I was!)
So, what changed?
Well, I can’t exactly write a recipe book now, can I?
It was my journey from 2015 on and through all of 2016 that required a change in attitude towards a lot of situations that I didn’t particularly like that involved people that I didn’t particularly like.
I was entrenched in a battle of control and blame in my mundane life, and I was believing that these situations were somehow within my realm of control… but they were not.
I was the face of acceptance on the surface, but underneath all of that, I was angry and withholding.
I kept telling myself that I had let go of the past, but I had not….not entirely.
I was full of assumptions and waiting for the other shoe to drop.
I was waiting and hiding and grumbling to myself.
I had expectations based upon assumptions, and I was feeding an ugly vicious cycle of blame and insecurity.
In short, I was living in the past, but thinking that I was moving on.
I thought I was open. I thought I was being accepting and fair and loving and generous. I thought that I was letting go. I told myself constantly that I was holding myself accountable. I was convinced that it was I who was fair and open and honest…and others were not.
It wasn’t me who refused to be, it was them.
And in my spiritual life – well, there’s a mirror. I was insecure, tentative…also angry.
I had so much stuff on my altars. I was meditating every day. I felt like I was constantly giving Them time, giving Them energy, giving Them thought.
So why was I having the dark night of the soul? Why was I feeling a fallow time? Why did I feel so disconnected?
You refuse to be open.
You refuse to be generous.
You do not allow….
You do not permit….
It will begin…when you begin.
And so, in 2016, I began without even being aware of what I was beginning.
(Enter the WorldBreaker, stage left.)
Looking back upon the year, I realize that there were many occasions wherein I was thrust into many uncomfortable situations.
I look back upon these uncomfortable moments and I recall feeling forced to explain myself in many ways.
A lot of these moments featured me being forced to examine myself – my social anxieties, my prejudices, my decisions, my beliefs.**
But 2016 also rewarded me – the year even brought me a lot of growth, and even some new friends – or rather, I re-connected with myself in re-connecting with several ‘old’ friends – which led to my social circle increasing exponentially and unexpectedly at the same time.
As well, 2016 brought me joy in unexpected places (Arizona) and heartache in others (Washington DC)…but in the end, the slow change toward actually letting go of my need to control/create a specific outcome led to unexpected and entirely unforeseen outcomes.
While I do not have a lot of the same people in my life that I had had in 2015, I do have people in 2016.
As well, in 2016, I have done things that I never thought that I would do, I experienced things that I’d never dreamed of experiencing before, and craziest of all, I am actually working with yet another God that I had once insisted that I would *never* work with.
(Hel, as recently as two months ago, I would have refused to even look at Him, let alone work with Him in any way.)
Funny, how things can change so completely and so abruptly, eh?
But that, my friends, is the story of a decision for another day entirely. 😉
So that was the trajectory of my 2016.
A year of rapid, dramatic (sometimes even melodramatic) emotional and spiritual change for me.
Courtesy of a relentless Breaker of Worlds.
Hail Loki, indeed ❤
*In retrospect, I realize that up to a point, 2012-2015 was essentially ‘making a good show of working with Loki’ compared to actually ‘working with’ Loki
**I felt ashamed, exposed…and about three months ago, it peaked in that a few folks even vilified me for speaking my mind, for writing what I wrote in this blog. And yes, it stopped me. A lot.
(from 15 July 2015:)
What to do? I should speak up.
I’ve got so much in my head right now. It’s almost obscene.
A Pathological Liar : A Story and a Situation
-As a member of the kink community, I see certain situations happening a lot. These situations lead to discussion that often concerns consent and manipulation, and whether or not members of the community have a responsibility to the community to broadcast the details of those situations wherein people have been manipulated or victimized by others in the community. If a person has been manipulated by another member of the community, does that victim have a duty towards the community for reasons of safety, to warn others? This is an endless debate and I have witnessed over and over these explosively emotional situations that ensue when someone was mistreated, shamed, manipulated or used by another and it all becomes a witch hunt. Case in point, I recently watched a rather popular member of the kink community leave the community of his own volition in an effort to protect himself from being outed by others for being a pathological liar. He was about to be found out, so he decided to come clean pre-emptively before others could expose his lies. So he admitted that he was a pathological liar, and he expected to be shunned and shamed. Instead, the community response of most members was to refrain from responding to him at all. Certainly, many who knew him were shocked and it became a drama unto itself – but otherwise, he left in relatively embarrassed silence. Most in the community expect that he will never be heard from again, and so it was assumed that the community will carry on, and anyone whose life he touched might now breathe a sigh of relief. Most people hoped that with his leaving that the worst part was over. Because he left quietly, it was assumed that no more lives could be damaged, no one else could be manipulated anymore. As I said, as a member of several communities –both online and offline – that resolution is a common hope.
But I cannot help pondering that question:
Does the victim of a manipulative person have a responsibility to their community to speak up? Some would say yes. Some would say no. Generally speaking, it is often assumed that no one would want a manipulator in their midst, and yet it would be difficult to find a community that has never had one.
There are those who would hide behind their self-imposed positions in the community. There are those who would twist the structure or the mission statement or even the rules of their group to advance their own needs. And in the case of religious community, there are still others who would hide behind the voice of the Gods to advance their personal agendas. So whether or not someone recognizes manipulation in the community, or whether or not an individual is being manipulated by another in the community, where does the responsibility rest?
I want to talk about this – I want to tell you about a particularly well-known [ETA: now former] Lokean godspouse – who manipulated me -but I don’t know how.
(Update, 15 July 2016 – edited to add: Y’know, it’s not that I didn’t know how: it was that I was afraid to stand up for myself, back then. I was afraid of what people would think of me. And even worse, since this person and I both live in the same state, and we actually share the same first name, I was afraid that others who didn’t know me would conflate me with her.)
I am horrified to realize something about myself in regards to one of my blog-followers on WP.
This is an acquaintance who has recently been ‘claimed’ by Loki. Not surprisingly, her blog concerns her latest adventures which are rife with sickeningly sweet discussions of an overabundance of NRE.
I have discovered that she is friends with (this Local Other Lokean who shares my name [LOL].)
Any day now, I wonder if and when she will suddenly receive a nudge that she *should* leave her mortal partner in deference to ‘Loki’s wishes.’
I have known so many others – who had been told this (by LOL) at one time or another – that Loki is nudging things in that direction.
It would seem to be a rather common experience, and it would seem many are familiar with that particular story.
I mean, LOL was by no means the only one who subscribed to the belief that if Loki doesn’t like your boyfriend/lover/husband, He will let you know.
But I remember when I had first been told by LOL that Loki wanted to nudge a certain mortal relationship of mine out the door in late 2012.
(And then again, concerning my marriage of 20 years…in mid-2013.)
So, as you might imagine, just when I thought that I was finished with a relationship overhaul, there’s another problematic relationship that needs tweaking, and if I refuse to overhaul, it … it goes.
Or does it?
Who do you believe?
Who will you listen to
Who will it be?
It’s high time that you decide
In your own mind…
-Natalie Merchant, Life is Sweet
It’s all a matter of personal discernment, isn’t it?
And suddenly I am forced to look at the source.
Whom did I believe?
Whom did I listen to?
I listened to LOL, actually…thinking that I was listening to Loki.
I also listened to another of LOL’s close, trusted friends, P – who also claimed to know Loki and who also claimed to routinely channel Loki.
Though LOL’s and P’s readings would often corroborate each other, this fact strengthened my belief, rather than raising the red flags that this situation normally would have for me.
I wanted so much to believe, you know.
I wanted to believe that the Gods could talk to us directly.
And I considered myself headblind.
So I trusted LOL and I trusted P, since P identified herself as a natural medium with strong psychic gifts, whose psychic readings were ‘eerily accurate,’ as I’d been told by several other members of the online community group of which we were all members.
We were all part of the same kindred.
Both LOL and P claimed to have my best interests at heart.
Even aside of the ‘channelings,’ P and I had spent months chatting and interacting online, on Skype and Google hangouts, and in private messaging.
I’d even met P in person when P came to see LOL in April of 2013.
In short, it’s a rather clichéd story: I thought that LOL and P were my friends. **
So you may imagine that there were several conflicting directives for me – do I listen to what I wanted to believe was LOL’s discernment of Loki – or do I listen to my own discernment?
Well, it took me a long time to figure it out for myself.
And, as a result, in the meantime, I made many poor choices based upon my avoidance and refusal to take up the reins of my own life. I fell into the trap of allowing myself to make decisions and choices based upon the validity of others’ truth rather than trusting my own truth.
I trusted that LOL and P wouldn’t mislead me. I should have trusted myself.
So…what was the message?
Trust your own discernment.
A Lesson on Community Dynamics
I think about what another BNP and Lokean [D] had said to me a little over 2 years ago concerning the ‘Loki-wives’ community dynamic.’
And surprisingly, D warned me specifically about LOL by name.
And that should have been another red flag…that I should have listened to. But I did not.
But I wish that I could talk to D and I would tell him,
‘Hey, you were right. I only wish that I’d listened to you then – but then again – perhaps I wouldn’t know now what I didn’t know then.’
But if I had listened – if I had grasped what he was telling me – I wouldn’t have learned the lesson that I needed to learn.
But I mean, I am a Lokean after all, and if there’s any way I learn, it’s the hard way.
I know that I don’t owe D anything except a thank you, but I am grateful to him beyond belief.
But sometimes one learns best by making mistakes.
See the Pattern?
I tried to write my angry whiskey bravery entry concerning patterns of manipulation but I didn’t post it widely.
My husband, V was supportive and encouraging, however.
The same person whom Loki supposedly didn’t like. The same husband that I was informed that I should leave by Loki Himself.
But it was not until almost a year later that I realized. I made choices that were based upon my trust in someone elses’s discernment rather than trusting my own discernment.
And then, last night I had a dream – two dreams actually – and He definitely appeared in both of them.
The first one took place at the beach. It began in the midst of a horrible event:
There I was, face up looking up blearily at the pale sky, feeling exhausted and disoriented.
Someone off to my left was informing me that I had almost drowned.
Evidently, I was being informed, I had been attempting to swim in the ocean but my skills were weak, so the strength of the ocean had become too much for me. (What an apt metaphor.)
My chest ached, likely from having coughed up so much water.
I looked over to my left, to see who had rescued me.
Loki was crouched down in the sand beside me as I lay there gasping and exhausted, and He was reprimanding me for allowing myself to drown.
He told me that He had sat by me for over two years, listening to me whining about a particularly static personal situation and that He was now there to inform me that the time of my whining was officially over.
He demanded that I stop trying to drown and actually learn to swim.
He was supportive, but in a sly, harsh way. He reminded me that I still haven’t done what I intended to do.
I know what that is.
And then the second dream, I was over LOL’s house, attending a gathering of the local Lokean ‘kindred.’
Of course I had been invited – and I should have felt welcome -but I was there and I was feeling rather awkward. I had just arrived at LOL’s house, with my arms full of groceries and alcohol. Feeling socially anxious, I remember inwardly cringing over the possibility that I felt the need to bring all the food and booze as compensation for my awkwardness. The possibility that I could engage the process of cooking and drinking –rather than socializing with others – suddenly seemed like nothing more than one of my typical avoidance maneuvers. As well, it suddenly became obvious to me that there was a part of me that hoped that nothing else would be required of me. Of course that was true; I would hide in LOL’s kitchen as I always did, grateful to have the distractions of cooking food and serving food. Didn’t I always hide in the kitchen?
I was both surprised and horrified to realize this, and I suddenly wanted nothing more than to go home.
I didn’t want to be there anymore.
But I don’t drive, so I began stressing over how I could get a ride home.
I tried calling my husband, V.
I tried calling on my older kid, N.
Then the doorbell rang. When I opened the door, there was a delivery-person on LOL’s front step, holding a massive bouquet of flowers. The bouquet was so large that I couldn’t see delivery-person’s face, until the delivery person peered around it.
I shouldn’t have surprised that it was Loki (and it was obvious, as He was using one of the more common mundane faces that He uses in my dreams) and He said:
Hey. I see that you are still not doing what you promised Me.
Stand up. Stand the fuck up, and stop being afraid.
What have I told you?
Do what you promised Me. Do something.
** In retrospect, I have come to realize that LOL and P were something else.
LOL and P were two people who were simply those who – whether they are aware of it or not – allowed their filter to color their channeling of Loki.
In short, LOL and P were a harsh lesson in discernment for me.
But I am here to tell you today – 1 August 2016 – that I allowed LOL to manipulate me.
As well, concerning their close association, I’d even allowed P to manipulate me in LOL’s stead, as well.
So, as a result, I don’t think that I could support anyone else going through what I feel was a pattern of grooming and manipulation that began in late 2012 and ended in November 2015.
But perhaps, that’s a story for another day.