bloodteethandflame

A life in threes

Tag: July for Loki

Month for Loki: Ten

Dver wrote a great post about a way to look at relationships with the Gods which gave me lots of food for thought.


You see, I’ve been going through a bit of a weird emotional patch.

I’ve been feeling disconnected from everything.

When I read of how Dver writes of her relationships with Gods in regards to her devotional practice, what I found interesting is that she generally splits them into two groups: Gods she loves and she works with them closely/offers to regularly — and Gods whom she loves simply for Their existence.

She writes:

“There are some gods I love – have loved for decades, even – and have never had a single, personal, direct experience with. I don’t know if I’m on Their radar at all. I don’t need to be. It’s enough to know Them even a little bit, and to honor Them. I don’t ask Them for anything, typically. Maybe I just keep an image of Them somewhere, make an offering now and then, read Their stories, and appreciate Their existence. That’s all it needs to be.”


Interestingly, this concept intertwines with a discussion of ego – and how removing oneself from the equation of love was liberating, as love given with the desire for reciprocation was simply ego…and how to love simply for the basis of loving because of the other’s existence was the most profound sort of love, and therefore the sort of love to be sought when speaking of the Gods, i.e the Gods should be loved without the (ego’s) expectation of reciprocation or interaction.


But by the same token, Dver admits to believing that the Gods that she serves daily in her practice do love her in Their way (as love is at its core and is understood to be an energetic act directed towards another/what is outside of the self) but that to serve in exchange for being loved is neither her goal nor her intent.

And I found that profoundly helpful as I navigate my feelings about Loki and Odin today: up until that moment of understanding, I would have said that what is going on with me is that They both feel like old friends that I haven’t seen or interacted with in a while.

Or as the Hávamál would say, I have allowed weeds and high grass to grow over the path to my friends’ home:

 

…if you have a friend,

and you trust him,

go and visit him often.

Weeds and high grass

will grow on a path

that nobody travels.

Stanza 119, trans. by Jackson Crawford

So, in that regard, I’ve been feeling guilty and sad.

An overgrown path


So I asked myself, what would it feel like to love them without any expectation of Their presence or interaction?


Which leads me to this other personal bit: a new Lokean in one of my groups is asking how one can become so close to Loki that He would ‘show up’ without being called on/summoned?
Several folks responded that Loki shows up for them only when He isn’t being sought out, and that it was a well-known secret that Gods do show up if you think of Them enough, and Loki especially; Loki will eventually show up… the keyword being eventually.


As for me, I am going to work on loving Them simply for being/existing and see how that goes.


I’m not adverse to simply being the devotee for a while. And I think about


Love.
Just love.
Let it flow out of you unimpeded.
And I will be there.
And you will know.

~~

Month for Loki: Five.

“Lokkr is the art of calling something towards oneself.

Lokkr is the art of compelling, the art of affecting change from the inside.

Lokkr is the art of singing the sweetest songs, using the most alluring words.

The most irresistible commands come from the breath, yet they seem as fragile as leaves in the wind

Lokkr is how we draw energy, how we pull magic towards us.”

                                                                                                 -Valas, Haegen

Artwork by Muirin007

Month for Loki: Four

Baby, You’re a firework…

Month for Loki: Three

So.

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.

Coincidence?

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.

~~~~

Month for Loki: Two

July is here and for some Lokeans, this month is devoted to Loki.

Here are some basic ideas for devotional activities to honor Loki.

Though this list is by no means comprehensive, I am sharing in hopes that it may be helpful for those looking for inspiration:

~ Loki is a fantastic story-teller and He is not called Silvertongue for nothing! Write a blog entry, a poem, or a short story.


~ Some devotees associate Loki with fire. If you do, light a candle for Him, and think a moment about how Loki has kindled a flame in your life.


~ Loki is a God of the Body, a God who appreciates all of the ways that a body can experience joy. If you can, take some time to enjoy living in your body, by dancing, singing, or exercising, and dedicate that activity to Him.


Do something out of your comfort zone – push yourself to do something new – even if it’s only once. Be open to adventure. Be open to change.


~ Loki is a God of the hearth. Cook up that new recipe or bake Him something from scratch, and offer to share it with Him.


~ Loki is a God of Luck and chance: Play the Lotto/buy a scratch ticket.


~ As a Jotun, Loki is a God of nature. Go for a walk. Enjoy the outdoors – even if it’s the short walk to your car. Or plant some flowers and dedicate them to Him.


~ Loki is a God of Laughter – Watch a comedy, share a joke, play – laugh!


~ Loki is a God of Getting Sh*t Done. Do a necessary but thankless task – and dedicate it to Him.


~ Loki is a Parent Who loves children. If you can, take some time to play with kids. Or think about (or do) something you’d enjoyed as a kid. Recapture that sense of wonder and fun.

~ Loki is a God of growth and change. What has changed in your life since you ‘met’ Loki? Find a photo of yourself from before you met or began working with Loki. See the differences as proof that you can change, grow, and learn. Celebrate how far you’ve come!

~ Loki is a God of Many Faces. How does He/She appear to you? If you can, draw, paint or sculpt a likeness of Him/Her, or simply create a digital image in Photoshop or Paint.

~ Loki is a God who values Truth, and encourages us to be true to ourselves. What is something that is true of you? Speak your truth, even if your voice wavers. Stand up for yourself and for what you believe in.

~ Loki is a God of Otherness, Outcasts and Outsiders. Just as you honor Loki when you stand up for yourself, you honor Him by standing up for others too. Go to a protest, stand up to bullies, and be an ally to those who struggle to be heard/find acceptance.

~~~

These are just a few suggestions for things that you can do to celebrate Loki this July…and remember: Don’t feel like you gotta do something *every* day!

Just take some time this month to enjoy Loki….and enjoy yourself ❤

Month for Loki, Day 1: Altar

Today is the 1st of July!

 

 Since 2012, Lokeans all over the world have been devoting the month of July to Loki.

Would you like to join me?

Hail Loki!

 

Month for Loki, Twenty-Ninth: Faith.

Yesterday, this song featured in a movie I was watching.

It was the end-theme of a bittersweet movie.

Hearing this song made me sad…but it also made me smile.

And today, even though I was not sad anymore, I was thinking all morning of how yesterday had actually been such a wonderful day overall, and how thankful I was for having had the opportunity to spend time with the people I love the most.

As well, I was thinking of L too – and realizing that He had delivered on what I’d wanted, on what I’d asked.

And then this song turned up on my recommended Spotify list this morning.

Pandoramancy.

Month for Loki, Twenty-Eighth: My paths are open before me…

“You took my hand and drew me to your side, made me sit on the high seat before all men, till I became timid, unable to stir and walk my own way; doubting and debating at every step lest I should tread upon any thorn of their disfavour.

I am freed at last!

The blow has come, the drum of insult sounded, my seat is laid low in the dust.

My paths are open before me.

My wings are full of the desire of the sky.

I go to join the shooting stars of midnight, to plunge into the profound shadow.

I am like the storm-driven cloud of summer that, having cast off its crown of gold, hangs as a sword the thunderbolt upon a chain of lightning.

In desperate joy I run upon the dusty path of the despised; I draw near to your final welcome.

The child finds its mother when it leaves her womb.

When I am parted from you, thrown out from your household, I am free to see your face.

 – from  FRUIT GATHERING, by Rabindranath Tagore (May 1861 ~ August 1941)
[Translated from Bengali to English by Rabindranath Tagore]
Published in 1916

~~~

And suddenly…I understood.

Month for Loki, Twenty-Seventh: Tipping His hand.

I’d been meaning to write about this earlier in the week, but somehow I’d never gotten around to it.

First, some background:

During my daily walks, I’ve come across some pretty strange items over the years.

I’m sure that there’s a word for it – divination through found objects – but nothing seems to capture exactly what happens.  Apantomancy comes close (as apantomancy is a form of divination through chance encounters, usually involving, though not limited to, encounters with animals) or even oryctomancy (which is divination using excavated objects), but nonetheless, I’ve found some unusual items during my daily walks.

Something I find a lot of is… playing cards.

Now I cannot express to you how often I have come across a single playing card in a random place:

  • In the middle of the woods, half-buried by leaves.
  • Floating in a drainage ditch that runs along the side of the busy road.
  • Skittering along in a light breeze across the gravel path of a New England cemetery, while my husband and I searched for the grave marker of my husband’s best childhood friend who died in 1987.
  • Folded in half and wedged between two crumbling bricks in a brick wall in the alley way behind a busy suburban restaurant – and the only reason I noticed it is because I had stepped out to get some quiet and privacy in order to make an important phone call – as I happened to be staring at that particular wall while I was waiting for the other person to pick up.
  • In the trunk of a newly delivered vehicle in a car-sales lot in Orlando – but the car only had 6 miles on it and the salesman insisted that no one had ever driven it before, as it had been delivered on a flat truck that morning from the manufacturer’s warehouse.

As well, I have had several vivid dreams over the last four years wherein Loki has shown me playing cards or made a direct reference to playing cards.

I didn’t know what to think, but it had gotten to be such a thing that I started to wonder if I should be considering these occurrences as some sort of message.

Could playing cards be used for divination?

The hell if I knew.

~~~

Such as eight months ago, I found this card:

Now while I was aware of cartomancy as a form of divination, I’d assumed that the ‘divination by cards’ definition referred exclusively to tarot cards.

Again, I wondered if there was some connection between tarot cards and playing cards, but I hadn’t thought to explore it further until that day.

I was surprised to find that playing cards and tarot decks are more closely related than I’d assumed, as according to this website, playing cards may have originally been invented as a means of divination long before people used them to play games of poker or bridge.

(The chicken or the egg…does it matter?  I didn’t know either way.)

So, I bit… what is the meaning behind the 9 of clubs?

Various websites define the clubs suit as a suit that governs finances, achievements and ideas. And 9 is the number of completion, fulfillment, unity and insight.  Most interpretations of this card focus on the concept of ‘small’ or ‘short’ as well as contentment and finality without fanfare.  9 of clubs signifies to keep your eye out for small successes, a new idea that can lead to a slight increase, or a step towards positive change.  Perhaps there will be a slight increase in pay, some progress towards a goal, the completion of a short-term plan, or the subtle end of a process.  Several describe the 9 of clubs as indicating a new friendship or taking up with a new lover.  And nearly every one of them mentions something odd:

Don’t be stubborn

And considering that, I have to laugh.

Stubborn is definitely something I can be.

And that definitely sounds like something He would say in response.

~~~

Moving onward, I found myself coming across a few more playing cards in random places while walking and cleaning house, and a few more meditation visuals and dream-sequences of Loki that featured what appeared to be references to poker, gambling and…lottery tickets.

Two weeks ago, a particular meditation visual was so strong that I suggested my husband buy a lottery ticket.

And he did.  Sort of.

He bought scratch tickets…and the theme was something along the lines of ‘Set For Life’ — referencing the game of poker, with the usual logo of lucky playing cards.

(P.S – we did not win.)

~~~

So, this past Saturday, I went to a local mystical shop.

I was looking for a particular tarot deck that I’ve been wanting for a while, but they did not have it in stock.

While I was browsing their selection of tarot decks, I noticed these ‘Lenormand’ card decks and card kits were mixed in with displays.

Although I’d heard of Lenormand, I didn’t know exactly how a Lenormand deck differed from any other tarot deck.

But according to the blurb-descriptions on several of their featured decks…

Lenormand follows the heritage of fortune telling cards based on playing card decks.

So I bought a deck designed by Ryan Edwards, called Maybe Lenormand.

The two decks – one base deck of 36 cards and 16 additional – feature these lovely Victorian-inspired line illustrations that I absolutely adore.

You know, having some delightful artwork to focus on certainly helps as I learn this new divination skill.

And so, I am exploring a new divination skill –  and perhaps that was what He was nudging me toward all along.

And here I thought He was encouraging me to play poker or gamble more.

Heh.