I’m a Heathen. No, I’m not a White Supremacist.

To begin, I will say that all religions have their extremists. Christians have the KKK/Westboro church, Muslims have ISIS/Daesh. Atheists have the anti-religion crazies. Heathenry is no exception to this.

As of recently, the racism and the spouting of genocidal Nazi propaganda in the Heathen community has been growing at a rapid pace from what I’ve experienced. It hurts my heart to see this. It’s gross, toxic, awful and I’m sure it hurts the gods as well. And it hurts other heathens by giving us a bad name. I don’t want to start out every religious toned conversation as, “I’m a Norse Pagan. No, I’m not a White Supremacist.” You can never tell these days who is racist, and who isn’t in the community. With this in mind, not only does the community become more dangerous for baby heathens, I’ve actually considered being solitary for a while. But I’m not going to be the stand-by witness. I’m not going to sit by and watch these assholes slander our gods like this. I will speak up and out towards this disgusting behavior. I will fight against this hate and make sure our religion is one that is accepting of everyone. It’s the funniest thing when you present actual historical fact of the Vikings exploring other cultures and interbreeding with other ethnicities and all you get in return is a flurry of poor-schemed insults (True story).

These guys are so obsessed with being tough, heavily muscled and trying to be frightening, and praising Odin. It’s funny when you realize that because ancient Scandinavia had such short summer seasons, they were a bit smaller than the brosatru’s fantasies. Also due to the difficulty of growing crops and resources (Big things come in small packages!). So really, the body of vikings are like your other average human. Nothing too special. If you’re the type of guy who thinks that Vikings were all cuddled up in their villages “protecting our bloodline”, then you need to open a history book. Heathenry isn’t just a deity/lore based religion. We have to take into the account of historical events as well.  Ancient vikings originated in Northern Europe such as Sweden, Iceland, Denmark, and Norway. Their footprints can be found stretched all over the corners of Europe itself. As far as Central Asia and North America.

One of the most well know explorers we know was Erik The Red. Being exiled from Iceland and Norway, he headed west. What he found there is what now is known as Greenland. Soon after his discovery, he gathered people to settle the great island and established a colony. Now, his son Lief outdid him. Lief heard from Bjarni Herjolfsson who was the original one that discovered North America, when Bjarni was brought off course and accidentally came to the Americas. Leif took a ship and some of his folks and sailed even further west until they came up on the North American coast. Bjarni and Lief may have been the first Europeans to discover and explore North America. Unlike Columbus, he left the natives alone. That’s just one example right there. The Vikings also traveled as far as central Asia for spices, silk, silver, wine, and pottery. Who is to say that they didn’t have a little fun in Asia? If you catch my meaning. Regrettably, the Vikings were also involved in slave trade which brought them further into the world. Everywhere they went, they bought and sold slaves as well. In return for all this, they sold items such as wheat, honey, wood, wool, furs, etc.

And literally nowhere in the texts is it ever spouting genocidal bullshit. It really blows me away when these idiots don’t realize that our Scandinavian ancestors never repeated the fourteen words or ever used the term “Aryan”. Those phrases rose to power when Hitler rose to power. Before that, nothing. If our ancestors were really as racist as these assholes seem to be portraying, wouldn’t we have documented it in history? I have had people literally ask me what is wrong with the fourteen words. Those kinds of people are why I am writing this. If you want to honor your bloodline and defend it and you want to marry people of your race, that is all good in my book. But the exact moment you start reciting the fourteen words and start being thankful you are of an “Aryan” race, then that is the moment to pack your bags and leave. I find it contradictory when people say that you must have lived an honorable life (or to have died in battle) to gain access to Valhalla, but then they turn around and spout this bullshit. That is not respectable. That is not honorable. That is foolish, insecure, and makes you cowardly.

In Conclusion: Go practice your Aryan-14/88-precious-white-baby-focused bastardized version of Ásatrú in the deepest depths of Náströnd because it is not welcome among here, nor in Valhalla. I will say it again. It is not honorable to mock, to harass, to wish death or exclusion on other races or even other people in general. It is pathetic, foolish, and it shows your fears and insecurities. For you to succumb that low, to bring yourself to wish harm on another person for something they were born with, shows that you are more useless than garbage.

In summary:

19029419_440228409671324_8161456495162206185_n.jpg

If you are interested in checking out more historical facts of the Vikings, here are some sources!:
-http://www.history.com/topics/exploration/vikings-history
-http://www.historyonthenet.com/viking-explorations-and-settlements-iceland-greenland-and-vinland/
-http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/primaryhistory/vikings/trade_and_exploration/(Cute one for the kids and the Nazis who don’t know basic viking history! 🙂 )

-http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?historyid=ab86
-http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/ancient/vikings/
And what’s more surprising? Not ONE mention of white supremacy in these sources! Case dismissed.

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A How-To: Paganism

Let me tell you a funny story. One night while I was at work, I was goofing off with some co-workers in our work group chat. I kept making really bad jokes and puns and one of them replied with,”The power of Christ compels you, Olivia.” I reply with,”Jokes on you I’m Pagan!”

And I swear to god, a handful of my coworkers were basically like,”Holy shit we are too.” I was ecstatic to find so many pagans in the bible belt all at once. There were wiccans, solitary, a Hellene, and one was even Asatruar!

One of my good friends then became interested in how to become pagan, and that’s why I’m writing this article!

What is Paganism?

By definition, Paganism is a religion other than one of the main world religions, specifically a non-Christian or pre-Christian religion. So in short, it’s a minority religion that’s commonly unheard of such as Norse Paganism (Asatru) Kemeticism (Egyptian), or Hellenism (Greek), and many more.

But the special thing about Paganism is you can take your path into your own hands and craft it into whatever you want to your hearts desire. You can worship one god, none, or an entire pantheon. You can go completely eclectic by worshiping a Greek god and Norse god at the same time. Or none at all and be solitary. It’s entirely all up to you. As long as you know how everything works of course.

Labeling

Labels can sometimes be a touchy subject in the pagan/occult community, but another special part of Paganism/Occultism is you get to decide your own practices as mentioned in the last paragraph, and create your own identity out of it. For example, I identify as a Norse Pagan/Lokean. I could Identify as Asatru, but since I work with mostly Loki and his family, I prefer Lokean. If you’re a witch who mostly works with the ocean but also works with some land, or herbs and gemstones, you could call yourself a sea witch if that’s your desire. If you worship a specific deity such as the christian god or even a Greek god, you can call yourself a christian witch, or a Greek practitioner. It’s also all up to you if you want to use the title of witch. (For me personally, I don’t.)

How do I become a witch/pagan/occultist?

The best thing to do is research, research, research. If you’re interested in a particular deity, read up on their offerings, likes/dislikes, what they stand for, and especially their role in their pantheon. If you’re interested in a portion of the culture and want to use it in your practices, that’s totally fine, as long as you show the proper respect.

All in all, your path is totally all up to you and where you want to go. I wish you luck down the path you walk!

Demonizing Loki

I dedicate this article to Loki, and his three beautiful monster children.

“Loki brings nothing but chaos and destruction! He’ll ruin your life!”

“He killed Baldr! Cut off Sif’s hair!”

“He did very questionable things to my horse. I demand compensation.”

“He’s the father of monsters!”

“He’s the Norse Satan!” (My personal favorite)

This is some of the many things I have been told about Loki. Many Asatruars and other pagans fear and demonize Loki due to his misdeeds in the Norse lore. This was possibly due to Snorri’s depiction of him in the Prose Edda. Snorri, being a Christian, planted a lot of “good vs evil” seeds throughout the texts. This sprouted the demonization of Loki and his children, among the Rokkr.

…But in truth he isn’t all that bad. 


Here’s why Loki shouldn’t be demonized.

By Olivia Loptsdottir

Loki has many names. World-Breaker, Lie-Smith, Face-Changer, Questionable-Horse-Handler, Shapeshifter, Trickster of the North. He’s a very flexible deity in the ways of chaos, change and mischief. Loki isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, that’s for sure. But he isn’t shy when he needs to lend a helping hand. Whether it’s to cause some chaos or it’s to heal. 

“To heal? But Loki isn’t a deity of healing! Isn’t that Eir’s job?”

Well, yes. Although, throughout the Lokean community, Loki has been known to take the abused, the mentally ill, the neglected, and the forgotten under his wing. He knows the pain of abandonment. Of sorrow. Of abuse. He knows the feeling of being hated. The feeling of being ridiculed and outcast. Loki’s lessons are of a very deep variety. Of course it’s something that doesn’t happen overnight. But for sure, it’s an eye-opener. To me, as well as other Lokeans, Loki is a god of beneficial -sometimes even necessary- change. And none of it is an easy task. He’ll rip you apart. Takes very cherishable things and shatters them. He will pull out the problems you avoid and shove them into your hands and say,”You need to deal with this and you need to do it now. It’s now or never.” He does it for the thrill. That’s the change he incites in you. The change you need to know that you can become a better person. It’s painful. Loki knows how to make you jump and dance on your toes. He knows the way you try to sneak around to get to the easy way and he doesn’t allow that. It’s through the pain, that you start to heal.

“What kind of good could ever come out of Loki?”

Well…

For starters, we have:

  • Mjolnir
  • An eight-legged horse
  • Asgard’s wall
  • Gungnir
  • Freyr’s golden boar and ship
  • Making Skadi laugh
  • Surtr’s sword
  • Sif’s golden hair
  • Thor’s belt and gloves
  • Retrieving Moljnir from that time Thor cross-dressed as a bride.
  • That one time when he rescued Idunn from that giant

And much more!

Any questions? No? Moving on.

“A god of truth? But Loki is called the Lie-Smith!”

As mentioned, Loki has many names. How did he acquire Lie-Smith? Well, most likely through his misdeeds in his adventures through the nine worlds. He cut off Sif’s hair, made a bet with dwarves for his head, did questionable deeds with a horse. But despite all that, Loki knows how to push someone’s buttons and call out the truth. Such as an excerpt from Lokasenna. Loki was pushing everyone’s buttons in Aegir’s hall. They didn’t even really deny it. It was just kind of like,”Okay yeah I did do that thing, but you also did this and this and this so…” between the gods and Loki. Loki’s rule is to never lie to yourself, or others. Always speak the truth, even if your voice shakes. The truth hurts. No one likes hearing the truth. Not even the gods. Loki knows lies. But he also knows the burning truth and it’s sting, it’s bite. Loki encourages us to be honest with ourselves. When we aren’t, he tears us apart. And we help him when we fall into our own web of lies and deceits. 

World-Breaker

Through your lessons with Loki, your world will turn upside down. And that is a promise. That is fact. No way in Helheim would you ever go through a lesson with Loki that wouldn’t be painful, let alone uncomfortable at the least. There’s a reason he shakes up your world- To snap you out of your delusional fantasies and bring you back to reality. He’ll tear into your personal affairs if he feels like it. Boyfriend, girlfriend, marriage, friendships. It makes no difference to him. Reality can be harsh, cruel, and unforgiving. Reality is where you really survive. And Loki teaches you that daydreaming can be easily shattered by reality. If you find yourself digging into your fantasies to escape a difficult situation that’s affecting you in reality that you procrastinate to face, you best believe Loki will shut it down. No exceptions. 

Ultimately, Loki’s rule is: Self-Knowledge. No matter what you say to others, be it truth or lie, never lie to yourself. Know yourself excruciatingly well, even the ugly parts, and always be honest with yourself first. When you speak the truth aloud, remember that the greatest honor is in speaking the truth that no one wants to hear, and that everyone has been avoiding out of fear. 

The Father of Monsters

In total, Loki had six children. Two by Sigyn, three by Angrboda, and one by a horse. (Yes, you read that correctly. A horse.)

Three of these children have very prominent roles in the lore. Hela, Jormungandr, and Fenris. Each, of which, have their own lessons in themselves and their tales as well. Unfortunately, a lot of people demonize his children as well, due to their acts and deeds. But of which, are necessary for the events leading up to Ragnarok. 

  • Fenris

Fenrir, along with his siblings, was birthed by Angrboda. The Mother of Wolves. He was only but a small wolf-pup, although soon grew in size. Each and every day, the gods grew more cautious around him in fear of his size. Until one day when the gods could no longer contain him. They held court and ultimately decided that Fenris must be chained not only because of his size, but of the foretelling prophecy that he would kill Odin at Ragnarok. Thor had smithed three strong chains, which all broke when put to the test with Fenrir. Then they went to the dwarves for advice. There, the dwarves smithed a very special, magical chain made out of six impossible things. This chain was called Gleipnir. The roots of a mountain, the beard of a woman, the footfall of a cat, the breath of a fish, the nerves of a bear, and the spittle of a bird all fashioned into a chain. Fenris suspected betrayal. He asked the gods for a token of goodwill, for one to place their hand in between his jaws as proof. None of the gods stepped forward, but Tyr. When Fenris realize he could not break the chain, he filled with rage. He snapped Tyr’s hand clean off. The gods had chained him down in a cave somewhere in Niflheim. There, Fenris waits. He waits for the day to break free and exact his revenge on the gods for such a cruel fate.

 Fenris is a deity of destruction. One of anger, and wilderness. In all of us, he represents the untamed, the wild, and the absolute insane. He represents the very nature of destruction and the destruction of instinct. Fenris is not a light deity to work with. His lesson is heavy. Lessons of mortality. They say all who look into his eyes and those who truly know him weep. To experience the sorrow and pain, as well as the anger, the destruction, and the rage weep for him. His mystery is difficult to understand and takes time to understand, as with everything else. But Fenris isn’t just a being of destruction. He knows love. He knew love through Tyr, through his parents, and his siblings. He knows the love of his followers and loves them and protects them deeply.

His rule is: Shadow. Learn to love and find sacred all the parts of yourself, even the darknesses. Honor them by making a safe place for them, where they can neither be harmed nor harm others.

  • Hela

Hela (or Hel) Rules the realm of Helheim where the dead who have died a “straw death” (death that is not gained through physical combat) go to rest until the events of Ragnarok unfold. When she and her siblings resided in Asgard long ago, the gods were cautious around her, due to her grotesque, yet exotic appearance. Odin then decided she would have rule over the dead in the furthest of the nine realms that is now what we know as Helheim. She frequently appears as a woman with half of her appearing alive, and the other in decaying death. She is truly a beautiful sight to behold. Death in her realm is not seen as something evil or something to avoid. Death is inevitable and it is a part of nature. Part of everyone’s life cycle. Being a death deity, she is very protective of the dead and looks down on necromancy or any practice that disturbs the dead.Death won’t care if you’re rich, poor, in between. Death won’t care if you’re famous, infamous, or an average joe. Death won’t care if you’re a bull, a frog, or a human. Death takes us all in the end no matter what. Be humble, for our graves are the same size. Through death, we bring life to others. While our body rots in the ground, we bring nutrients to the soil, flowers, and grass. Food for maggots, beetles, mushrooms and other decomposers. We bring food for the scavengers of the animal kingdom. Through our death, we feed life.

Above all, live your life fully with gratitude. Value your life. Life is as sacred as death. Live a life worth experiencing, and worth remembering when you finally travel to Hela’s hall. It’s your only one, so don’t waste it.

Hela’s lesson is that of Vision: Death takes the long view of all things, and so we strive to value far-seeing over temporary difficulties. Ask yourself: Will this matter in a year? Five years? Ten? After I am dead? Think ahead before you react, before you speak. Learn not to take things personally; people often react from their damage, and everything blows over in time.

  • Jormungandr

When Jormungandr was born, they were born without gender (maybe both!). Like his wolf sibling, he, too, grew in gigantic proportions, from puddle, to pond, to lake, and eventually to the ocean in Midgard where Odin casted him to, naming him the protective barrier around Midgard. He is possibly the most mysterious out of Loki’s children. He doesn’t limit himself to labels or boxes or tags. He is born without gender, yet may be both, neither, or up to your personal discretion for what you, as well as Jormungandr feel is best. Jormungandr is non-verbal. Yet, he speaks with such energy. He helps to embrace one’s true self. Rather than sorting yourself out in different labels, he helps you to see yourself as one person. He helps to see that you are sacred. It’s about understanding that nothing can be everything at the same time. The end is the beginning as he endlessly circles Midgard. Liminality. Think about gender fluidity. You could be one, be the other, be both, or be neither. He’s also been known to be ambiguous in gender identity. He goes outside of the boundaries of what’s considered “normal” and teaches you to do the same.
So, if you feel you’re outside of what’s normal, embrace that. (unless you’re a serial killer.) Don’t be afraid to embrace the change that can only be brought on by you and only you to make who you truly are

Jormungandr’s rule is: Liminality. As the Snake is neither male nor female, both of Midgard and not of Midgard, so we see that the honorable and the sacred is most often found in that which crosses boundaries, bridges opposites, moves between worlds. We value that which is Both, and Neither, as one of the Great Mysteries.

In Conclusion, although these guys get a bad rap because of their appearance, their misdeeds, their nature, or even just because they are what they are, they have deep wisdom bestowed within them and within the lessons they teach. If you pursue this path, do not tread foolishly or without caution. Their wisdom is not gained lightly. It is gained through hard work of the self. Blood, sweat, and tears will be poured into these lessons. These are some hardcore deities. You might be surprised at what you discover.

Rokkr Ethics and Values:


http://www.northernpaganism.org/rokkatru/rokkatru-ethics.html  

My Relationship With Loki.

Too often, people look at me like I’m on bath salts when I say I worship Norse gods. Specifically Loki. I’ve been told I need to turn to God, that I’m crazy, and all that other nonsense. I’ve been talked about behind my back and been ridiculed. But I’ve also been asked further into the subject, I’ve been admired, I’ve gotten the opportunity to teach people about the Norse and their practices. For that, I am grateful. Ever since I found myself into the practice in late 2013, I’ve dedicated my hobbies to learning more and more about Norse Mythology, the practices behind it, the history of the Scandinavians, and their culture and everyday life.

The Beginning.

I started honoring Loki around late 2013. At the time, I will shamefully admit that I was obsess with Marvel Loki at the time. Around the same time, I was lurking on a site known as spellsofmagic.com. My friend had shown it too me after finding out Iw as putting my time into goetic demons to get revenge on a lover. Anyways, SoM is an occult site known for a very good amount of information contributed by its members. When I found out about the Norse gods, it piqued my curiosity. I started looking into Norse Loki, his history, his role in the lore, his attributes, and anything else I could find. Then I prayed to him.

And I got a response.

At first it felt very weird and I was quite skeptical at what I was experiencing. I felt something outside of my consciousness and outside what I considered normal. I felt like I was being watched. Back when I would frequently meditate, I always felt him observing me and what I was doing. It always felt like an outside energy had rested itself upon my back, or neck, or any other body part. His energy feels like what I would consider fire, warmth, red, chaos. Every time I felt it, his face would pop in my mind. I would see that chiseled Tom Hiddleston physique along with the fiery red slicked back hair with a mustache and a goatee to boot. I imagined him dressed in animal furs and garbs. Specifically fox furs.

My Experiences and UPG

Once we had established a sort of greeting with each other, I remember praying to him and talking to him constantly. Out loud, in thought. I even wrote a couple of letters to the guy. I furthered my skill of communication when I found out about channeling, path-walking, and horsing. I gained a good skill in channeling and from there on, I was able to talk with Loki in a direct way. Even now, as I write this, I feel his energy across my body, his words begging its way into my mind.

“I’m loving this!” He says in response to me writing this post.

I remember asking him about becoming a god-spouse, once. At this point in practice, I was several months into the practice. It was done through a horsing session, in which my friend agreed to volunteer. At the time, I was also in a relationship. When I asked his thoughts on becoming a god-spouse, his only words were,”You have (former boyfriend’s name here)”. And that was the end of it.

I remember the night I became a daughter of Loki. I gave him my blood. I bounded our relationship in my blood. Keep in mind, this was crudely preformed and quite embarrassing to share as it was not that formal. In the future, I plan on performing a more coordinated one, suitable in both our favors. Basically what I did, I had gotten a nosebleed. Instead of wasting it, I had rubbed some into his altar, signifying my devotion to him. And it was accepted.
At times, when I was stumped, feeling depressed, or worrying too much, or feeling shitty in general, I know I could always (and still can) count on Loki to be there and give me advice. He’s called me out on shit, he’s reminded me on how much he and the other gods love me, he’s reminded me that even the most shitty of times will pass. He’s reminded me of so much and has given me a lot of great opportunities.

I was also curious on honoring him as a god of sex once. I asked him about it and I got my answer through a tarot reading. It was clear to both of us that he felt quite uncomfortable being given offerings of sex, sexual energy, or masturbation. All that was for Freyja. But he was more fond of hearing my disaster dates, sex mishaps, and general funny or embarrassing stories that occurred in my everyday life.

Too many times have I heard that Loki is regarded as the “Norse Satan” of Norse mythology from the hardcore neo-nazi dude-bro Asatrus. This is one of my favorite myths to debunk and throw out the window.

The Norse, from what I’ve researched, had no concept of good or evil. Just what correct action the situation called for.When the christianization of Scandinavia had erupted in between the 8th and 12th century, the Scandinavian people were exposed to the idea of sin, and that the most simple actions could make you wind up in hell. When the Prose Edda was written by Snori Sturluson in the 13th century, he demonized Loki, calling him evil and exaggerating his less redeemable deeds. There is plenty of evidence in the lore that clearly shows where Loki was needed the most. Had been not for him, the gods would’ve found themselves into some very deep shit.

Take the wall of Asgard for example. This is one of my favorite stories to tell from the lore. The basic summary tells of a giant disguised architect who makes his way into Asgard claiming to build a wall in exchange for a hefty price that consisted of the sun, the moon and the hand of Freyja in marriage. The gods were not pleased with this deal, but needed the wall for protection. Loki had suggest they give him a deadline. If he didn’t come through with the deadline, the deal was forfeit. The gods and giant agreed to this and sent him to work with his horse. To the gods’ surprise, the giant and his horse manage to rush through no problem. The gods turned to Loki, expecting him to fix it. He would, but not in the way you’d imagine. So near the end of the deadline, a mare had run out and distracted the horse from his work. Without the horse, the giant was not able to get the wall finished. Upon the gods discovering the architects true identity, he was promptly kicked out of Asgard. But where’s Loki in all this? It wasn’t much thought of until awhile later, Loki came to Asgard presenting Odin with a gift. The gift was a foal with eight legs! Turns out, Loki was the mare that night that distracted the horse. You can see where this is going.

Now think about this: Where would the gods be without Loki in this situation? What would’ve happened to the sun? To the moon? Freyja would’ve been married to some nasty giant. The existence of Sleipnir would have not been gained if it weren’t for Loki. Loki was also involved in the forging of Moljnir, Thor’s hammer. Loki pulled a rather cruel prank on Sif by cutting off her hair. Thor was pissed as could be, you’d imagined. So Loki sought help from the dwarfs. Loki saw how beautiful and exquisite the dwarfs’ work was. He gave them praise for it. And through his cunning words and promises, Loki was able to get hair for Sif fashioned out of gold. He was able to get other gifts from the gods as well through his cunning words such as Moljnir, Gungnir, and Skidbladnir.

Loki had brought all of these gifts to the gods. Need I say more?

In conclusion, I honor Loki as a god of many things. I honor him as a god of fire, I honor him as a god of chaos, I honor him as a god of balance, I honor him as a god of truth and lie. He is a prominent father figure in my life and my spiritual father. I am very honored and grateful to be dedicating myself to such a wonderful deity. May we prosper forever.

Hail Loki!