Articles by Dagulf Loptson

Dagulf Loptson

Dagulf Loptson has been a devotee of Loki for 20 years and counting, following a childhood, love at first sight encounter. Despite his insistence that he was a Heathen, many gods from different traditions have become a part of his life over the years, who he loves and honors with the precarious balance of a trapeze artist. When he's not writing about gods, he's an graphic artist, a professional tattoo/piercing artist, and horror movie junkie. He is the author of "Playing With Fire: An Exploration of Loki Laufeyjarson", through Asphodel Press.

Breaking Loki’s Bonds

The following is intended to be a consecutive 9-day practice, ideally performed at night. In the Northern mysteries, nine is the number associated with initiation, death and rebirth. Each day begins with an invocation to one of the heiti (sacred names) of Loki, followed by a seated meditation, followed by a magical action to externalize what was experienced in the meditation. The goal of this practice is to identify a part or parts of yourself that have been hidden, scapegoated, or rejected, much like Loki himself was bound and outcast by the gods in Lokasenna and Gylfaginning. This may be an unsavory part of your past, a rejected aspect of your personality (whether good or bad), or a suppressed talent. True power stems from the acceptance and integration of yourself in all of your parts. To cut off and throw away parts of yourself that you see as taboo or undesirable is to cut yourself off from a potential source of your own power. This exercise is intended to help you identify and reintegrate with these parts of yourself, so that they can be transformed and used towards your personal empowerment.

What you will need:

  • 1 medium-large candle to represent Loki’s presence. Colors associated with
  • Loki are orange, red, yellow, black, and green.
  • 3 small white candles which are large enough to carve runes into
  • 1 knife or dagger sharp enough to cut through a ribbon.
  • 1 black marker
  • 1 red ribbon that is thick enough to write on and long enough to cut into three equal pieces
  • 1 horn, chalice, or drinking vessel of your choice
  • 1 pin or other etcher to carve candles with
  • 1 unopened bottle of mead, wine, or other drink of your choice
  • Lancets, or something else to draw a small amount of blood
  • A small iron cauldron or fire-safe vessel in which you can burn the ribbon
  • On day 7 you have the option of using a dremel

Day 1


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail to Inn Bundi Áss (in-boondy-ows), bound god beneath the earth. I call to you, who speaks the hard truths so that we may be released from the shackles of our own making. I come to you in humility to learn the mysteries of self.

Every day after you speak the invocation, carry the lit candle around the circumference of the place in which you will be working in order to hallow the ritual space. Fire was often the vehicle of exorcism in Old Norse culture.


You look around, and find yourself on a grey, rocky outcrop beside the ocean. There is a chill in the air as the waves crash violently against the rocks, misting you with cold, briny water. The sun is nowhere to be found in the sky, and all you see when you look up is a thick layer of stormy grey clouds. A powerful gust of wind hits you, pulling violently at your hair and clothes. You know you have to find shelter soon. You look at the colorless scenery around you, and see what looks like the dark opening of a cave not far in the distance, facing the sea. You scrabble over the stony ground, tripping from time to time as your foot catches on a jagged stone, or the violent wind threatens to topple you. Finally, you make it into the opening in the rock face, and see that it leads into a dark, downward sloping tunnel. You hold your breath and cautiously begin to make your way deeper and deeper into the passage.

Though you have relief from the wind and the cold, a new kind of shiver makes its way down your spine as you hear the deep, distant echo of a scream from farther ahead. Suddenly, the ground begins to tremble violently, and you nearly lose your footing. But as almost as soon as the earthquake starts, it is over. Though you fear what lies ahead, you continue downward. Suddenly, the tunnel opens up into a large, dark cave. As you enter, you are met by a gust of horribly pungent air. The air stinks of acid, mingled with the smell of burning flesh and old blood, and you have to swallow to keep form choking. However, the smell is nothing compared to the sight that meets your eyes as you walk towards the center of the cave.

There is a man, naked and awkwardly stretched over three large, jagged stones. He is held in place by a strange, blood colored rope, wound tightly three times around his shoulders, his pelvis, and his knees. His long orange-blonde hair is streaked with blood, and he looks drawn and pale. From a distance, you can see that red blisters have bloomed on a face you are sure at one time was very handsome. His body trembles pitifully either from cold or pain. Standing over this man is an equally sad looking woman. She is holding a large, wooden bowl over the man’s face, into which a toxic-looking liquid is slowly dripping. Rags of clothing hang from her skinny arms and there are pale grey streaks in her strawberry hair. At first you think she’s an old woman, but as you draw closer you look into her face, fixed in concentration, and realize with a shock that she is actually a young woman, despite the hollows in her cheeks. Your eyes follow the green, dripping liquid upward, and you see an enormous black serpent coiled within the dead, dried roots that protrude through the stony ceiling. Venom trickles from its enormous fangs into the bowl below.

The man on the stones catches sight of you, and the red, welted skin around his eyes makes their green color violently bright. He signals you to come towards him with a jerk of his head, and though you feel both pity and revulsion, you come closer. As you do, the man speaks in a voice that sounds parched and exhausted:

“This is where the gods bound me, after I mocked I mocked them at Ægir’s feast. They didn’t like that I shone a light into the darkness of their hypocrisy, their pride, and their illusions of control. They thought they could cast off their flaws if they cast me out of Ásgarðr as their scapegoat, but they only make themselves weaker by trying to tame my flames. They keep me bound here, just as you keep the light of your own truth bound. You bind your inner fire, the might of your own divine Self, with fetters of your own making. You hide away those parts of yourself that you want no one to see; you lie to yourself and pretend to be something you’re not. But you will never be truly empowered until you accept yourself in all of your parts. Then the full might of your will can burn and transform the world around you. Will you release me from these fetters? Sacrifice the self you knew on the cremation pyre, so that something greater may arise?”

Magical Action:

Today, simply meditate on whether or not you are prepared to allow the god of change into your life to aid you in its transformation. Many people wish for change, and then curse the change and the one who brought it when it arrives out of fear. Are you ready to claim responsibility for yourself and the fruit of your own actions? Are you ready to see yourself as you truly are?

Day 2


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail to Vé (vay) holy exorcist and illuminator of truth. Shine light into my dark places, so I can see that which I hide from others, but most importantly myself.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


You find yourself again within the darkness of the cave, beside the bound figure and his frail wife. She holds the wooden bowl over his head, her arms trembling but never falling. The venom hisses and smokes with every drop into the bowl. As you watch her, she motions to you to come closer. She seems pitifully frail and small next to you, but you can sense a deep, inner strength below her fragile surface: a fire that is shining dimly through the darkness.

“Look into the mirror and tell me what you see.”

She lowers the bowl slightly, so you can see your reflecting looking back at you in its venomous contents.

“Who do you have bound here?”

As she asks this question, you can see your reflection swirling and distorting in the green surface of the venom, until the face looking back at you reveals a part of yourself that you try to hide from the world and have banished into the darkness of your own subconscious. Is this person strong or weak? Kind or cruel? Brave or afraid? Whether good or bad, this is a part of yourself you want no one to see, or a part of yourself you have scapegoated and blamed for all of the ills in your life.

Magical Action:

Take the bottle of mead, wine, or other drink, and use the marker to write a name for your shadow-self or trait on the side of the bottle in runic script. Use a lancet to draw some blood, and put a dab on each of the runes, chanting the name of each rune as you do so to awaken the staves. Set the bottle aside and leave it unopened.

Day 3


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail Læva Lundr (lie-vuh-loon-der), cunning spider that crouches in the tree of deceits. Allow me to see those places where I have been snared or have snared myself in the web of fate.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


You find yourself back in the cave. Sigyn lifts the bowl up towards the serpent. You turn your eyes to the red fetters that are holding Loki’s naked figure bound, and as you look more closely you can see that they aren’t ropes, but bloody sinews. Loki speaks to you again:

“These are the guts of my son Narvi. They are the only thing that keeps me from freedom: the final remnants of Sigyn’s child. The gods transformed his brother Váli into a wolf, and we watched him rip his brother to pieces before the cruel gods used his entrails to bind me to these rocks. It is my guilt that keeps me bound here, that I couldn’t save any of my children from the Æsir’s wrath. But what are the fetters that keep your spirit bound? What is holding your hidden self in place?”

As you look closer at the entrails, you are surprised to see that Loki no longer looks like himself, but has transformed into the naked image of the shadow self you saw in Sigyn’s bowl. The fetters have transformed as well, and instead of fetters, you see them transform into a symbol of what is holding down this part of yourself. Sigyn speaks to you. She speaks the name of the thing that is imprisoning you, whether this is a person, an emotion, a belief, or something else.

Magical Action:

Choose a word or name that describes the fetter that is binding you. Using the runes of the Elder Futhark, write this word/name onto the ribbon with your marker. Use the lancet to draw some blood, and empower each rune by dabbing it with some of your blood and chanting its name. Set the ribbon aside to use on a later day.

Day 4


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail Ver Sigynjar (vehr-sig-in-yar), husband of Sigyn, friend to victory. Show me where my support stems from. Who is holding the bowl for me?

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


Back in the cave, you see that Loki and his bindings are back to how they were when you first encountered them. You look into one of the cave’s dark corners, where you see a large, long metal box. Along the edges of the box, you see nine locks that hold the lid shut. Without turning his head, Loki follows your gaze to the box with his eyes. He speaks to you again:

“To break these bonds, you will need a suitable weapon. That is the box that holds my sword Lævatein, which I forged in Niflhel and will brandish at Ragnarök. Surtr’s wife Sinmara guards it for me, and keeps it in a box with nine locks. To reveal this weapon, you will have to discover the keys that open these locks. Search within yourself to find them.”

Who are your allies that will give you the strength of resolve to break these bonds? Are they a spirit, an ancestor, a god, or a person in your life? Are they a principle, a talent, or a virtue? What three things hold the key to your empowerment?

As you look towards the box, you suddenly feel a weight in your pocket. You reach inside your pocket, and pull out the first key. What does the key look like? What color, shape, and size is it? On the side of the key, you see a word engraved on the side. This word reveals the identity of your first ally. You walk to the box, and insert the key into the first three locks. One after the other, you hear the heavy “click” of the locks opening, and the sound echoes through the hollow chambers of the cave.

Magical Action:

Take one of the small white candles and use your etcher to carve the word you saw on the key into the candle in the runic script. Using your lancet, put a dab of blood onto these runes and chant their names to awaken them. When this is complete, light the candle in honor of your ally. If this is a god, spirit, or ancestor, ask them for their aid in your liberation. If this represents a living person, speak a prayer of blessing on their behalf. If it represents a personal talent, code of honor, or virtue, meditate on how you are (or are not) implementing it in your life. When you are done, extinguish the candle and save it for the next day.

Day 5


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail Lóðurr (low-thur) mighty creator who gives the children of Midgarðr their spark of life. Illuminate the allies who will help me release the fire within.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


Back in the cave, you place your hand in your pocket again and pull out the second key. Examine its appearance, and turn it over until you see a word engraved on its side. This word reveals the identity of your second ally. You turn to the box once again, and unlock the next three locks with this key, one after the other.

Magical Action:

Repeat the process from yesterday with the second ally/candle. When you have carved and blooded the candle, light todays and yesterdays candle during your meditation. Extinguish them both when you’re done meditating on their meaning and save them for tomorrow.

Day 6


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail In Slægi Áss (in-sly-ee-ows), most cunning of the gods in the nine worlds. Show me the identity of my final ally so that I may open the locks that hold the object of my freedom.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


You are back in the cave. For a third time, you examine your pocket and pull out the third and final key. Examine the last key, and find the engraving that reveals the identity of your third ally on its side. You use the key to unlock the three final locks on the box, and with some effort are finally able to pull open its heavy lid to reveal what lies inside. Within the box, you see a long, razor sharp sword. Serpents decorate its hilt, and the reflective metal of the blade burns with its own inner, blue fire.

Magical Action:

Perform the same action you did for the first two candles. When the third candle is carved and blooded, light all three candles during your meditation. As they burn, breathe deeply, and imagine the might of your three allies flowing from the candle flames into your body through your breath. Allow the three candles to burn themselves out.

Day 7


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail Loptr (lof-ter), mighty serpent of fire who treads the sky with thunder. Fill me with your heavenly knowledge and show me the source of my liberation.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


Back in the cave, you still find yourself gazing at the weapon that has been revealed. As you gaze into the reflective surface of the blade, the true identity of this sword is revealed to you. An image appears in its surface, which will show you what being, force, or course of action will allow you to break through the fetters that are binding your hidden self. Meditate on the image you have been shown for a moment, as it is of the utmost importance to use its wisdom not just during the course of this meditation, but in your mundane life as well.
From behind you, you hear Loki scream again as Sigyn runs to the side of the cave to empty her bowl of its venomous contents. As the acid drips onto his upturned face you smell smoke and burning flesh. The earth trembles beneath your feet as Loki struggles in his bonds against the poison. Sigyn quickly runs back to her husband and assumes her position above him. The earthquake abruptly ceases.

Magical Action:

Meditate on what you saw in the blade’s surface, and find a word to describe and name it. Write that name onto your ritual blade with the marker (alternately you can use a dremel to etch the runes in). Draw some blood and put a dab on each of the runes, chanting the rune’s name to awaken each one.

Day 8


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail Hveðrung (Kveh-thrung), roarer, mighty harbinger of Ragnarök who wields the wand of destruction. May I have the resolve to set fire to my stagnation so that a new self may arise from the ashes.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


You are back in the cave. You reach into the box and grip the sword by the hilt. You feel a current of power travel up your arm as you do so. With some difficulty, you pull the heavy sword out of the box and walk towards where Loki and Sigyn are waiting. You fix your eyes on the fetters, taking a moment to breath and remember the true name of the fetter you are actually destroying. You lift the sword over your head, and with a powerful swing the sword cuts cleanly through the fetter binding Loki’s shoulders with one meaty slice. Though the fetters seemed so powerful and strong on the outside, they were much more fragile than they first appeared. The illusion of their strength has been broken. You lift the sword a second time, slicing through the fetter binding Loki’s pelvis. The sword slices easily through this fetter as well, clanging on the rock lying beneath it. You lift the sword a third time, and slice through the last fetter binding Loki’s knees.

Magical Action:

Take the ribbon in your hand, and take a moment to focus on its true name and identity. Take your knife and slice through the ribbon in three places, symbolically releasing yourself from your old bondage. Set the pieces aside for tomorrow.

Day 9


Light your candle to represent Loki’s living presence, and speak this invocation:

Hail Gammleið (gam-layth), vulture’s path, lord of cremation. Burn away the refuse of my old bondage so that my hidden self may be released and I can be reborn anew.

Carry the lit candle around the circumference of your working space.


As the last fetter is cut and Loki is released from his prison, the darkness of the cave is suddenly filled with a bright, blinding light. Loki rises from the stones, no longer drawn, weak, and injured, but blazing with red and gold flames and radiating power. His green eyes shine like emeralds, and wild laughter escapes from his scarred lips. The serpent above him has retracted its fangs, no longer the trickster god’s oppressor. It drops down to meet him, wrapping itself around his shoulders: the symbol of his power restored. You suddenly feel the heat of his flames surrounding you, eating away at your flesh as if you were a corpse on a funeral byre. He burns away your falsities, your illusions, and your masks. His flames strip you bare until nothing but the true image of your whole Self is what remains.

You turn to Sigyn, and see that she too has been transformed. She has gone from the trembling waif holding the crude, wooden bowl to a woman blazing with power. She is dressed in a cloak of swan feathers, her strawberry hair framing a gentle but strong face. The bowl that once held her prisoner has been replaced with a golden chalice, and the venom within has been transformed into sweet, golden mead. The goddess of victory offers you the chalice: the hidden self that was once your poison has now become your medicine. She bids you to drink with these words:

“Mead I bring thee, tree of battle,
Mingled with strength and mighty fame;
Charms it holds and healing signs,
Spells full good, and gladness-runes”

You take the cup and drink deeply of the mead, burning a trail of bright fire down your throat and into your body. The hidden self whom you rejected has now been reintegrated into yourself: making you healed and whole. The trickster and his consort have helped you to release the shackles of self-deception, and have initiated you into the mysteries of self-knowledge. You turn towards the two deities, and ask them if they have any more words of advice for you before you leave the cave and return to the mundane world. Whatever wisdom they share is to serve you on your path alone.

As you begin to walk up and out of the cave, you see light streaming through its entrance. The dark clouds that once filled the sky are gone, and the sun is shining brightly upon the calm sea. Walk forward into the world transformed, with power and authenticity.

Magical Action:

Open the bottle of mead, wine, or whatever drink you have chosen. Pour the liquid into the horn or cup and chant the runes that make up the name you gave to your shadow-self into the liquid. Next, take the three pieces of ribbon and put them in the cauldron or another fire-safe vessel. Set fire to the ribbon pieces using the flame from Loki’s candle. Hold the horn or chalice over the flame of Loki’s candle and imagine that the liquid is filled with the cleansing flames, transforming what was once the poisonous nature of your shadow self into an elixir of healing and empowerment. Take a deep breath, hold it, and then drink the liquid down in one draught. Make an oath to yourself that rather than rejecting whole parts of yourself, you will transmute them and integrate them back into your sphere of power. The venom of the serpent is the same medicine that can cure its bite.

Loki’s “Roads”

It isn’t uncommon in polytheistic traditions for deities to possess many different aspects or epithets to describe different parts of their nature. Each individual deity can almost be thought of as possessing an entire pantheon within themselves, and in many traditions different aspects of that god or goddess is called upon for different things. In Santería, these different aspects of certain Orishas are called “caminos” or “roads”, and while all roads are understood as still being the Orisha in question, they can seem very different from one another. Though Yemaya is often thought of in Neopagan circles as being the quintessential “mother goddess”, in her road of Okuti she is Ogun’s partner who drinks rum, smokes cigars, and goes into battle with a machete. I have heard that Okuti embodies the cold, violent aspect of the ocean. Conversely, Asesu is a gentler road that embodies the sea foam. Both of these aspects are simultaneously true representations of Yemaya (and the ocean itself), even if they seem to be contradictory. The idea of different aspects of deity is also found in Hinduism, and mantras to different deities often include 108 different names/aspect of the deity being worshipped. For example, one may call upon Ganesh as Bala Ganapati (“the childlike”), Vira Ganapati (“the valiant warrior”) or Vaghana Ganapati (“Lord of Obstacles”), each name telling us something different about the complicated figure that is Ganesh.

In modern Heathenry, I have seen some people use the many heiti and kennings of our gods and goddesses in a very similar way. Though many of the names of the gods could be thought of as purely poetic in nature, designed to help the poet create alliteration in their work, I personally hold that they were most likely also used in the worship of the gods in ancient times. These names serve to tell us something about the nature of the gods, and could also invoke specific aspects of a god or goddess depending on the name being used. Calling on Óðinn in his aspect of Óski (“god of wishes”) is bound to show a very different face of Óðinn than Draugadróttinn (“lord of the undead”), even when they both refer to the same deity. Worshippers may also find that they resonate with one heiti of their deity more than others. Fellow columnist Galina Krasskova has mentioned that the “path” of Óðinn she feels closest to is Gangleri (“way-weary”), who may be thought of the embodiment of Óðinn as the eternal wanderer and seeker of wisdom.

The various kennings and heiti of the gods show us that the nature of the gods was imagined to be very complex by the ancestors. Óðinn, though usually only recognized and called upon for his beneficent aspects in modern Heathenry (such as his role as Sigðir the “victory-giver”) is also equally Bölverkr (“evil-worker”) and Skollvaldr (“ruler of treachery”). Rather than lumping Óðinn completely into all of his good traits or all of his negative traits, I think it’s more balanced to say that Óðinn is a deity that has some very extreme positive and negative aspects, and that one should be careful about which “Óðinn” they are calling upon.

It’s needless to say that Loki is a god who is looked at with a great deal of suspicion in modern Heathenry, and some people claim to have had some very negative experiences with Loki in their own lives. But this begs the question: if they were expecting Loki to be an evil force in their lives, could it be that they unintentionally attracted the attention of one of Loki’s darker paths? Perhaps their experience would have been different if they call called upon Loki in one of his gentler aspects. I have also met Lokeans whose understanding and experience of Loki was very different from my own; but I have also met Lokeans whose image of Loki was almost identical to mine. Could our mutual or dissimilar alignment with a certain heiti of Loki serve to explain this? While Loki has many more names than the ones I will be sharing (a complete list can be found in Playing With Fire: An Exploration of Loki Laufeyjarson), the 9 I will be sharing are those that I consider to be the primary “roads” of Loki one is likely to encounter. While I have attributed my own interpretation to these heiti, Loki worshippers may be interested to see which one they resonate with the strongest. When one is crowned with an Orisha in Santería, divination is performed to find out which “road” of the Orisha that person carries (trusting their crowning Orisha has more than one). Similar divination could be performed by a Loki-worshipper (or a devotee of any Norse god) to determine which aspect of the god/dess walks most closely with them if they weren’t already sure. I have outlined how to create such a “yes/no” system of divination in volume 2, number 1 of Walking the Worlds.

Hopefully this list of Loki’s heiti may be found useful for worshippers, and hopefully will inspire other Heathens who work closely with a fulltrui to develop similar descriptions. Knowing the many different aspects of the deities is a way of fleshing out their worship for modern times, and coming to know them in a more complete way.

1. Lóðurr:

Symbol: Sirius
Colors: Blood red, gold, yellow

Völuspá 18
Þrymlur I-III 21

The identification of Loki as Loðúrr is one that has been highly debated, though in reality becomes perfectly blatant if one reads the Icelandic rímr, which are epic ballads from the 14th century. One of these ballads, Þrymlur (which was written roughly between CE 1300-1400) follows the same basic storyline as Þrymskviða. Both stories are an account of how Þórr’s hammer Mjöllnir was stolen by the giant Þrymr, who demands Freyja as his bride in exchange for it. Þórr is then persuaded to disguise himself as Freyja in order to reclaim his hammer, and Loki accompanies him disguised as his bridesmaid. In the Þrymlur account of the story, Loki is directly referred to by Þrymr as “Lóður” when he comes to visit him.

18. Gumnum þótti granda fæst
garpnum bragða-drjúga;
fjaðrham hafði Loptur læst,
Loki tók hátt að fljúga.
19. Flýgr hann út yfir Ásagarð
Einn veg láð sem geima;
kalli ilt í kryppu varð,
hann kemr í jötna heima.
20. Fjölnis þjón kom furðu-dæl
framm að landa baugi;
úti stóð fyr Óðins þræl
jötuninn Þrymr á haugi.
21. Ljótur talar í lyndi veill—
leiðaði orðum sléttum—
Lóður kom þú híngað heill,
hvað hefr kall í fréttum?1

18. To men it seemed fewest of guiles
To men [it seemed fewest] of lasting tricks
Lopt had closed the cloak of feathers
Loki began to fly high
19. He flies out over Ásgarðr
In the same way [over] land as sea
Called ill in the strong-ward, (?)
He comes into Jötunn home.
20. To a beach the servant came very easily
Ahead on a ring of land;
Out stood before Óðinn’s thrall
A giant Þrymr on a grave-mound
21. The ugly one speaks in a cunning way—
he inquired in smooth words—
Lóður come you hither in health,
What call do you have in inquiry?

Because they were written so late, some scholars have ignored the evidence within the rímr for the Lóðurr/Loki connection entirely. However, Haukur Þorgeirsson suggests this is largely due to an overall unfamiliarity with these poems, and makes a case for the theory that the poet of Þrymr knew that Lóðurr was an alternate name for Loki directly from oral tradition.2

This is Loki’s aspect as a creator god. In this aspect he is the brother and traveling companion of Óðinn and Hænir. Lóðurr grants Askr and Embla lá ok litu góða (“blood (?) and good color”),and therefor can be seen as the god of the fire of the blood and the metabolism. He is also connected to the creative fire of the sun and stars and is the owner of Sirius (Lokabrenna). This aspect of Loki is directly connected to the Hamr within the soul complex, which is the vehicle through which one can fare-forth and shape-shift.

2. Vé (“Holy Enclosure”):

Symbol: Heart
Colors: Orange, yellow, white

Gylfaginning 6
Ygnlinga saga 3
Lokasenna 26

Loki as the fire of exorcism and establishing sacred spaces. In Old Norse religion, a vé was a sacred space that was cleared with fire. I personally see Villi and Vé as alternate names for Lóðurr and Hænir, and therefore see Vé as yet another heiti of Loki. This is the aspect of Loki that consumed the heart of an unnamed witch in Völuspá hin skamma and gave birth to monsters as a result. Vé is also the embodiment of the fire of purification that consumed Gullveig (who I see as an aspect of Freyja) when the Æsir burned her three times, connecting him to the art of seiðr through this mutual initiation.

3. Loptr (“Lofty”):

Symbol: Serpent, lightning, shoes
Colors: Red, orange, green

Þórsdrápa 1
Haustlöng 8
Gylfaginning 33
Lokasenna 6, 19
Hyndluljóð 12, 41

Loki as the fire of the sky (lightning) and the bringer of divine knowledge. The companion of Þórr [Thunder} that travels with him through the sky in Þórr’s chariot and joined him on the journey to Þrymr’s hall. This is also the aspect of Loki that owns the “sky-shoes” described by Snorri in Gylfaginning and who borrows Frigg or Freyja’s falcon skin to deliver messages for the gods.

4. Gammleið (“Vulture’s Path”):

"Loki as Gammleið", copyright 2016 the author, used with permission

“Loki as Gammleið”, copyright 2016 the author, used with permission

Symbol: Vulture
Colors: Red, orange, yellow

Þórsdrápa 2

Loki in his aspect of the fire of cremation. This is the road of Loki that was in an eating contest with Logi (wild-fire) and who consumed Baldr’s funeral pyre. This is also the aspect of Loki who releases the soul when a body is cremated. As the feminine nature of this name suggests, in this aspect he is also the mother of Sleipnir (who can be imagined as a symbolic funeral bier).

5. Inn Bundi Áss (“The Bound God”):

Symbol: Salmon, fishnet
Colors: Black, green, orange

Skáldskaparmál 23

Loki as the god of the fire under the earth. In this aspect he is the god of earthquakes and hot springs. This is the aspect of Loki that was bound by the gods in Lokasenna and who acts as the revealer of hard truths. This is also the aspect of Loki that invented the fish net and was ensnared in it in the shape of a salmon.

6. Inn Slægi Áss (“The Cunning God”):

Symbol: Fox, gadfly, seal
Colors: Orange, black, white

Skáldskaparmál 23

Loki as the divine trickster. In this aspect he’s associated with the fire of the forge and is connected to the dwarves and craftsmen in general. This is the aspect that stole Sif’s hair and provided new hair for her and gifts for the other gods. He also stole the treasure from the dwarf Andvari.

7. Hveðrung (“Roarer”):

Symbol: Volcano
Colors: Black, dark red, blood red

Völuspá 54

Loki as the breaker of worlds and the vengeful god of destruction. This aspect rules wildfires and volcanoes and steers the ship Naglfari, leading the Muspilli into battle. In this aspect, Loki is the father of Fenris, Jörmungandr, and Hel and is the consort of Angrboða. He goes into battle with the sword Lævateinn (“destruction wand”).

8. Læva Lundr (“Tree of Deceits”):

Symbol: Spider, flea
Colors: Black, red, yellow

Haustlöng 11

This is Loki´s aspect as the god´s deciever and the instigator of conflict. This aspect of Loki deceived Iðunn into being captured, stole Freyja’s necklace, tricked Höðurr into firing a dart of mistletoe at Baldr, and Þórr into visiting Geirroðr’s hall without his weapons. This aspect of Loki can be likened to the “need-fire” of Nauthiz, as he creates the difficulties that the gods must overcome in order to grow in strength and perform great deeds. He is the spider who spins webs of fate that the gods find themselves tangled in.

9. Ver Sigynjar (“Husband of Sigyn”):

Symbol: Cauldron (such as the meat of the god’s sacrifices were boiled in)
Colors: Orange, yellow, pale-blue

Skáldskaparmál 23

In this aspect Loki represents the fire of the hearth and home and the fire of the heart. He is the sacramental fire that Sigyn pours offerings to in order to carry strength to the gods. This aspect is the husband of Sigyn and the father of Váli and Narvi. This aspect of Loki is also the defender of children, as can be seen in the poem Loka Táttur.

What is Heathenry Missing?

The longer that I’ve been involved in modern Heathenry, the more I’ve noticed that many people who have worked this religion for a long time have ended up doing one of two things: either converting to a new religion entirely, or exploring other traditions on the side (often claiming that they were sent to X tradition by the Norse gods themselves). The other day I found a video on Youtube made by a man who had converted from Ásatrú to Zoroastrianism, and it was obvious that he had done so because he felt more rooted in a stable and organized philosophical system. I have a personal aquaintance who converted to Judaism from Heathenry after many years, explaining to me that she was tired of working in a religion that had no answers. I have met even more Heathens who, along with worshipping the Norse gods, have found themselves drawn to (or sent to) African Traditional Religions, Hinduism, Taoism, British Traditional Wicca, Feri Tradition, Roman Reconstructionism, Greek Reconstructionism, Buddhism, and other (often unbroken) polytheistic traditions. Though I’m sure that many Heathens would disagree with me, I actually see this as extrememly important step towards the reconstruction, and perhaps more importantly, the revitalization of the Germanic Traditions. In this article I’m going to try to explain why.

I find that Heathenry in general has a bit of a xenophobic streak when it comes to looking to other cultures for inspiration or practicing more than one tradition at once. In the abovementioned video of the converted Zoroastrian, there were numerous comments written by people essentially calling him a race traitor for turning his back on the traditions of his ancestors. Perhaps these reactions are based on the assumption that Heathenry isn’t missing anything and it would somehow become a less pure practice (or you aren’t a serious person) if you gained inspiration or insight from any other cultures. Others with a more Folkish bent may see seeking for wisdom outside of one’s roots as unnecessary and unnatural. Either viewpoint is rather ironic considering the wandering nature of Odin, who would go anywhere and do pretty much anything for wisdom. And in either viewpoint, there is a base assumption that Modern Heathenry is a complete, self-contained tradition that possesses all of the essential elements of how our ancestors practiced their traditions. However, I think the deeper one digs into modern Heathenry, the more one starts to realize that its waters are actually very shallow compared to the depth possessed by traditions with literally thousands of years of unbroken history.

I find more and more that the people who have been at this religion for a long time eventually will hit a plateau in their spiritual development and relationships with the gods. Not to say that the Holy Powers themselves are somehow shallow, but because the old religion was exterminated and we have lost the framework to carry people deeper into spiritual transformation. Some people do all right by themselves, but this is often a lonely and solitary journey, and you have to make it up as you go. I think that part of the reason that plateau exists is, whether or not many people recognize it, Heathenry possesses a huge empty space within it, creating a vacuum that has to be filled by something.

Modern Heathens have a few surviving poems and a few stories of the gods left from the conversions, maybe a few folk charms (most of which are highly Christianized) and a few brief descriptions of what certain rituals looked like (but who knows how trustworthy those accounts are). What we don’t have are everything that make a religion a religion: We have no surviving prayers to the gods, no ritual instructions, no sacred songs, no sacred dances, no description of what gods received what sacrifices, no protocol for how sacrifices should be made, no description of what kind of training priests underwent, no methods of divination. In other words, we have lost almost every shred of our spiritual technology, which I define as those practices which a culture developed through trial and error to produce a deep, wide-reaching spiritual (and sometimes physical) effect. I personally think it would be overly dismissive to assume because we have no record of a more extensive set of Germanic spiritual technology, they never existed in Northern Europe; especially when every unbroken polytheistic religion in the world possesses those basic elements. To me, that has always felt like a cop-out, inspired by fear that one will look silly be doing something that isn’t in “the lore”.

Because Heathenry possesses such a large vacuum when it comes to religious practice, I believe many modern Heathens have unconsciously filled it with the only kind of spiritual technology most post-conversion Europeans/European-descendants are familiar with: that of spontaneous, personal prayer and the study of holy scriptures (which Heathens have replaced with the surviving lore and the works of modern scholars). Incidentally, these are the only two pieces of spiritual technology one is likely to be introduced to in a Christian upbringing, and the two most prevalent practices in modern Heathenry. The only other forms of spiritual technology I see much in modern Heathenry are the act of standing (rather rigidly) in a circle to honor the gods, and sometimes using what is known as the Hammer Rite; the circle and the hallowing of four corners being directly derived from ceremonial magic. Not only is our spiritual technology missing, but with no lines of elders or philosophy in place, anyone can inject any kind of political or social philosophy they want into modern Heathenry, and there’s no one to refute whether it really belongs there or not.

That isn’t to say that these practices are by themselves bad or can’t do anything positive for worshippers, but I haven’t personally experienced the same power, complexity, structure, or philosophical thought that I have seen in unbroken polytheistic traditions, and ultimately as a spiritual seeker I found myself craving something more. There were many holes in Heathenry that I didn’t even realize were there until I started to look at how the spiritual technology of Hinduism and Santeria, and the Huna-derived Feri practices functioned. When I saw them working in action, my perspective of what religious practice is supposed to look like shifted drastically away from the Judeo-Christian model I hadn’t even realized I’d been indoctrinated with. I think that paradigm shift is something many (if not all) modern Heathens struggle with. If the structure of Abrahamic religions is the only thing you’ve ever seen, than of course whatever religion you’re attempting to create is going to contain (even if unintentionally) many of those elements. It’s not a badge of shame, it’s just the reality of our cultural upbringing.

For me, the only way to start looking at polytheistic religion in a more ancient way was to immerse myself in cultures that still possessed those ancient polytheistic ties and ways of thinking. If I hadn’t started to study Hinduism or had never been initiated into an ATR, I never would have even been able to see what major pieces of spiritual technology Heathenry was missing: sacred song, sacred dance, intense (and accurate) divination, sacrifice, a consciousness of tradition lineage, magic that actually works. These are all things that the lore and sagas make brief mention of, but things that we have lost the framework and knowledge to actually do effectively. Rather than diluting some imagined purity of my Heathen practice, my journey into Africa, India, and Hawaii actually brought me closer to the Norse Gods, and inspired me to take what I had learned and use it as a way to flesh out the “hows” and “whys” of the many “whats” our surviving scraps of lore have left us with.

I think my Heathen practice has primarily drawn inspiration from Hinduism, as it’s our closest living Indo-European relative (it’s the frog DNA in my dinosaur, for all the nerds out there). Even linguistically you can make many parallels that are similar across the two Indo-European cultures, which can even give hints as to how concepts shared by both traditions may have operated within a Northern European context. I think many Heathens are unaware that the Runic systems of philosophy and magic put forth by Guido von List and Edred Thorsson were both heavily inspired by the Vedic Tradition of mantra, and regardless of what people have to say about modern Rune magic, I find it to be a welcome little oasis of mysticism within the often very dry and scholarly reconstructionist desert.

This doesn’t mean I support cultural appropriation, nor does it necessarily mean sitting a statue of Shiva next to a statue of Odin (though if you’re learning from that culture, it might be more polite). What it has meant for me is looking at a piece of missing spiritual technology in Heathenry that we have evidence for (for example, fire sacrifice), looking at how fire sacrifice is performed in living polytheistic cultures, what kinds of prayers are said, what kinds of gods are associated with it, when and why is it used, what kinds of symbols both cultures share, and then using that as the building blocks of a practice that fits comfortably in a Northern European context. Perhaps most importantly, that practice will be also be carrying the time-proven methodology that we lost access to when our European traditions were destroyed.

Then comes the trial period: if you work with the spiritual technology you’ve recovered and retranslated and it gives you good results, you have the beginning of a new, valid tradition that can be passed on to your community. If nothing happens or it just doesn’t gel, reassess and go back to the drawing board. Divination is a valuable tool during this stage. In my opinion, you could learn absolutely everything there is to know about the lore, but unless you can actually use it and make it work, it’s nothing but an intellectual exercise. If you want to be a scholar, than be a scholar. Priests, priestesses, and devotees should be the ones caring about results.

I tend to look at my style of reconstructionism more like restoring a classic car than putting on a renaissance fair. Even if on the outside the car looks the same, if it doesn’t have all of the parts it needs to run, it’s not going to function to its full capacity. Just like the metaphorical car we’re restoring, some of those pieces may be missing or aren’t being manufactured by the same companies in the same way. You then may have to somewhere else find the closest equivalent to make the car run.

Some people may read this and argue that if you start looking outside of Northern Europe to rebuild our traditions, then the traditions of our ancestors will lose their integrity. But the sad truth is, there are no ancient Heathen traditions left to defend. We have no continuity in our “traditions”. They were exterminated to the point where scholars are still debating about nearly every point of Heathen religion to this day, because in reality we just have no clue what it really looked like. Modern Heathenry IS a new religion in every sense, and has only been practiced since around the 1960’s. Every Heathen “tradition” used today was created only around sixty years ago by cobbling together pieces of ritual based on the scant evidence we have in the lore and whatever other knowledge was available at the time. The idea that Heathenry is the result of an unbroken, pure line to our ancestors is an illusion, and yet it has become nearly taboo within Heathenry to practice or learn from any other unbroken polytheistic traditions. However, I don’t see any other way to learn how to start thinking like a polytheist other than spending time with people with an uninterrupted polytheistic mindset, which is why I believe so many Heathens have felt the call from the Gods to explore foreign lands. It may be the only way to re-learn and bring back the practices that our gods and people have lost. Like Odin traveling into Jotunhiem to bring back the mead of poetry, I think many people will continue to feel this call.

While I don’t think it needs to be everyone’s calling, I am always very pleased when I find people who are experiencing the power of unbroken tradition, and using the tools they are learning to rebuild Heathenry as a more powerful, functional religion. Because I think it is so needed, I would like to see more Heathens in the future being less quick to police each other away from exploring other cultures, or shame each other for trying to do powerful work outside of what a few Christian men were able to record. If we want our spiritual technology to be more than just for show, we need people to explore and bring back the wisdom to recreate the pieces we’re missing. Instead of writing yet another blot where we talk about a piece of the lore and stand rigidly in a circle, I’d love to see more people creating sacred songs, devotional practices, initiations, parades and processions, philosophies, schools of thought, and even mystery schools: anything to put the life back into our religion and give it that depth that it’s missing. Debating the lore like a Bible Study Group unpacking Corinthians just isn’t enough for me anymore, and I know I’m not the only one.

Lokasenda Ritual

I created this ritual both for myself and for others as a structured way in which to honor Loki and Sigyn, and to feed the gods. To understand Loki in the context of the sacramental fire, and the importance that burnt offerings holds in strengthening the holy powers, I recommend my previous articles: A New Place for Loki part I and II. This ritual was primarily inspired by the Vedic ritual of Agnihotra, a ritual of burnt offerings with Agni (fire) as the central focus.

As Loki is the vehicle through which the gods are fed, this ritual can be used to honor any god or goddess, and can also be used effectively during blót. As I am presenting it here, it can be used as a simple daily or weekly practice to honor Loki and Sigyn, pray, and commune with them, and to empower and strengthen the gods and their influence in the devotees life.

What you’ll need:


  • A fire-pot or other flame-safe container for your fire. I’ve used a fire-pot with fire-pot fuel inside my house, and have used a fire-pit with wood when outside.
  • Incense. I find that Loki favors dragon’s blood, but any kind will do.
  • A bowl and spoon or small branch to sprinkle your oblations with.
    Vodka, mead, or some other hard alcohol that will burn easily without putting your fire out.
  • Powdered Birch bark and a container to hold it.
  • Runes (optional).
  • An image to represent Loki is optional, as the fire is his literal personification.

Step 1:


Light the central fire and the incense.

Step 2:


Sprinkle birch powder into the fire while saying the following invocation:

Welcome, now, Loki,
and take this crystal cup
Full of ancient mead.
Loki, Lord of heaven’s fire
Lightning swift Loptr, come
Greet me kindly Gammleið
Great priest of sacrifices
Fill my heart with your flames
First among the sons of Muspell
Cunning one, carry my prayers
Across the Ása Bridge
Through your mouth the gods feast
May they ever grow in might
Mighty king, clothed in red and gold
May there ever be frith between us
Hail Loki

The birch bark is representative of Laufey, Loki´s mother, and the wood that Loki (the sacred fire) emerges from. Lafuey (“leafy one”) is the tree from which the sacred fire from heaven is born when she is struck by Farbauti (“cruel striker”) the lightning. I personally associate Laufey with the birch, which as her name and the Berkana Rune Poem’s suggests is a leafy tree. The Norwegian Rune Poem for Berkana is also the only Rune Poem that specifically mentions Loki.

Step 3:


Use your spoon or twig to drip the alcohol from the bowl and into the fire while saying this incantation:

Sigr Sigr Sigr
Sigyn grants sure victory
To the gods and to the folk
Through your hands pour all oblations
Bring our blessed offerings to the
Bright burden of your arms
Gateway through which the gods
Gladly feast and grow in strength
Gift for Gift may we ever gain
The grace of our elder kin
Hail Sigyn

Through this process, the god’s offerings are poured from Sigyn’s bowl and onto Loki: the gift bringer and messenger of the gods. The spoon or twig is representative of the serpent: traditionally a symbol of transformative power and healing. Sigyn’s name, “victorious girlfriend”, is invoked for victory for the worshipper/s and the gods, just as Svaha, Agni’s wife’s name, is chanted with oblations to Agni during the Agnihotra.

Step 4:


The rest of your time in this ritual is spent praying, meditating, pulling runes to ask for the god’s advice, or whatever you feel. Ideally, you can sit in prayer or meditation until the fire burns itself, upon which the ritual is complete.

Strengthening Spiritual Communication

Last week, I had a frustrating dream, where I was very thirsty and kept trying to drink from different cups of water I had around me. However, every time I picked up a glass of water to drink from it, I found ants floating in it and had to move onto the next one. When I woke up the next morning, I walked over to my ancestor altar and found ants crawling on the altar and floating in their water glass I keep on the altar for them. Though I felt bad that ants were invading their altar, it was nice to have confirmation that my connection to my ancestral spirits is doing well, because I heard the message loud and clear: Clean our water!

Since I had that dream, I’ve had a few people ask me advice on how to receive clearer messages from their spirits and Gods, and how to build stronger connections to them (which is a question I have been asked in the past as well.) The answer to that question is really the heart of what Polytheism, at least traditionally, is really all about: relationship building. While this is actually very simple, is also very difficult for many people in our day and age of instant gratification.

Building a relationship with the Gods and spirits depends on a very simple paradigm shift, which is also difficult for many people to embrace: the Gods and spirits are real. In many Pagan traditions it is very popular to talk about the Gods in terms of “archetypes”, energies, or symbols, though it is not as often that I find people expressing behaviors and attitudes that would suggest that, for them, the Gods are very real personages who can have a noticeable effect on our day to day lives. When one person is relating to another person, whose reality is undeniable, there is a certain degree of formality and respect which we have all be socialized to appreciate: if you give someone a cookie, you don’t casually snatch it from their hands a few moments later and eat it in front of them. If you want to talk to a person, you don’t just think about talking to them as loud as you can and then become angry with them when they never responded to you. You don’t offhandedly talk shit about someone while you’re standing right in front of them (or at least you shouldn’t). I have seen Pagans of many stripes do all of those things when it comes to the Gods and spirits, be it taking back gifts or promises that were given to them, expressing anger at them for not anticipating your every desire, or speaking about them so disrespectfully that it implies a disbelief that anyone is actually listening. Though one can have an emotional attachment to a deity or spirit as a symbol, energy, or as a mythological character, this still isn’t the same as knowing that they are independent personages and treating them as such. I would say that the first step in building effective relationships with your Gods, spirit guides, and ancestors is simply thinking about them as if they’re real people, not just amorphous concepts.

In many modern Witchcraft traditions, a great deal of emphasis has been placed upon Witchcraft as a path of personal empowerment. While I fully support growing in one’s personal power, the Medieval idea of where a Witch got their power was quite different, and can be summed up in what was called the “pact”; the pact being either with the Devil himself or other (supposedly) demonic spirits. This paints a very different picture of traditional Witchcraft, where creating change in one’s world largely depended on a relationship between the Witch and the non-corporeal entities they served and allied themselves with. This idea is actually a very shamanistic one, where a person’s power is related to the collective power of their spirits and the pacts that bind them to those spirits. Conversely, I have heard many modern Witches and Pagans talk about their relationships with their Gods and spirits as if they are only latent aspects of their own personality that can be channeled in appropriate situations. In other words, when you are talking to a god or spirit, you are only speaking to an aspect of yourself that embodies that being as an archetype. While this may be helpful as a path to self-discovery, I have observed that it is almost completely useless when trying to build relationships with the Gods and spirits that can actually impact the physical world, and in comparison is little more than a colorful mental exercise. It is much more simple to skip the middle step of rationalizing your belief in the Gods to death before you work with them, and just proceed as if they’re actually real. Period. The end.

The next step, now that we have established that your Gods, spirits, and ancestors are indeed real, is also very simple. If you knew of someone in your life that you wanted to build a relationship with, what would you do? You would start by talking to them, inviting them to spend time with you, maybe inviting them over to your house for coffee. The Gods and spirits are no different. If you make the mental shift of treating non-corporals by the same rules that you would treat flesh and blood relationships, this becomes pretty self-explanatory. Praying to the Gods, spirits, or ancestors doesn’t always have to be a long, formal process. Communication can be simple as talking to them in the car on your way to work: “Hey, I’m thinking about you today, these are the things that are going on in my life right now.” You can set aside a small place in your house for a God, spirit, or your ancestors, where you can go talk to them or leave things for them. When you have a cup of coffee in the morning, pour a little bit into a small cup and give it to them and let them know it’s for them. Altars aren’t just for decoration; they’re supposed to be a special place, set aside for us physical beings to do physical things to help us commune with non-physical beings.

The next step is the most important aspect of this relationship building, and perhaps the most difficult to follow through with: consistency. You are never going to be able to attain powerful results in your work with your Gods and spirits if you set up an altar for them, dust it every once in a while, and forget that it exists most of the time otherwise. You will also never obtain results if you only bother to talk to the Gods, ancestors, and spirits when you’re in a crisis or want something from them. It’s not that the Gods and spirits don’t care, but part of their ability to work in the world for you depends and the energy and power that you build by continuously strengthening your relationship with them. If you’ve never put much work into developing a two-way bond with your spiritual allies, that umph isn’t going to be there for you when you really need it, and being able to receive clear messages from them is going to be much more difficult. The channel that connects us to our spirits is like a path through the woods, and the less effort you take in keeping that path clear and open, and the less you walk down that path, the more overgrown and difficult it will be to get through.

Now that we’ve talked about the hard part, what can a person do to stay motivated enough to build these strong connections that I’ve been talking about? The answer is the very crux of Devotional Polytheism: loving the Gods, spirits, and ancestors. If you’re pursuing these connections only as a way to obtain power, you are more than likely not going to possess the enthusiasm and dedication that is required to remain consistent in your efforts. Building these relationships with your spiritual allies should, ideally, feel as painless as it is to maintain your relationships with your friends, family, or romantic partners. Even if it takes work, you should feel excited about spending time with your friends, or setting aside time to spend with your spouse. If you have Gods or spirits in your life that you feel that kind of love for, it shouldn’t feel arduous to make time to spend with them, even if it’s only once a week. That could simply look like sitting in front of their altar and talking to them for a few minutes, maybe while lighting a candle for them or pouring them a fresh glass of water. The key is to do this consistently, even if you’re feeling distracted that day, or depressed, or tired. If each person would devote the same amount of time and energy building a relationship to their spirits and Gods as they do building relationships with people over social media, we’d have a lot of spiritual power houses on our hands. Honestly, the simple, simple solution to overcoming any kind of spiritual miasma is just giving a shit. Do something for your spirits and Gods once a week at least, preferably on the same day every week (don’t stress too much if you screw up and are a little late), and I guarantee you will notice results. They may not be instant results, and it may take many months of devotional work before the path you’re treading starts to become clearer, but it will happen eventually. This requires a lot of self-discipline, but if you want it and believe in what you’re doing, you can make it happen. I’m admittedly one of the most scatterbrained people on the planet (and a Lokean to top it off), so if I can do this, so can you.

Lastly, what do I suggest for people who don’t really know where to start with this level of devotional work, or maybe don’t have deeply established relationships with any deities or specific spirits yet? Again, this is very simple, and you will hear experienced spirit workers of all creeds say it over and over again: START WITH YOUR ANCESTORS! Perhaps because the ancestors were once undeniably human, or maybe because they are literally our family members, many people tend to overlook their ancestors in their spiritual work, or think about them as if they’re not very glamorous or exciting (or at least not as exciting as the Gods or the Orishas). It is, however, that familial connection that makes them so important and so powerful. Our ancestors (and especially our recent ones if you shared a good relationship with them in life) care deeply about us and want us to succeed in life. If you had a family member that would move mountains for you when you were alive, that hasn’t changed just because they’re dead. We wouldn’t even exist if it hadn’t been for the perseverance of our bloodline, and as a result the ancestors have a special interest on their continued success via their descendants. Because we literally are carrying a direct connection to our ancestors via our blood, they are also some of the easiest of our spiritual allies to contact. All that’s required is to open the path for them and empower them through our prayers and actions.

In my own practice, this means keeping an altar for my ancestors, where I put pictures, items they owned, some of my father’s ashes, and other items that remind me of them. I keep a glass of water and a light source on their altar (I was taught that spirits are attracted to both), and at least once a week I give them a cup of coffee and a shot of alcohol. If I’m making something to eat that I think they would like, I share a little bit with them on a small plate. I talk to them, tell them about what’s going on in my life, and say prayers for their strength, peace, and happiness.

For those of us who work with deities from broken traditions, such as the Pagan traditions of Northern and Western Europe, our ancestors may also serve as links of memory to the Gods and how they were once worshipped. Experience has taught me that a solid practice with your ancestors is the foundation that needs to be laid down before a stable structure can be build upward towards the Gods, and you may find that developing a consistent practice of ancestor reverence opens unexpected doors to the deities as well. If you’re interested in looking more into the whys and hows of ancestor reverence, I highly suggest the work of fellow columnist Galina Krasskova, who teaches and writes about methods of ancestor worship with a great deal of passion and understanding born from experience.

So there you have it. The secret to successful spiritual contact is actually very simple, and in many ways self-explanatory. The hardest part about building these relationships is simply just doing the work, consistently and with love. Extend the courtesy and effort that you would give a flesh-and-blood relationship to the Gods and spirits, and everything else will follow.

What is a Lokean?

A question that I’ve been frequently running across as Loki’s fame has spread across the Internet over the past few years is, “how do I become a Lokean”? To answer that question, I thought I would first tackle the question, “what is a Lokean”? I have to warn my audience that there won’t be many footnotes in this article, and so a lot of what I’ll be talking about concerns my personal spiritual experiences and (GASP) UPG. Some of it may come off as spiritual “woo woo” to more agnostic or cultural Heathens/Pagans, but it is what it is. This is my experience, take it or leave it.

First of all, who in the hell am I, and why am I qualified to answer this question? I’ve been a devotee of Loki since 1995, when as a child I began having dreams about a person who called himself “Loki” and would take me on strange adventures. I grew up in a spiritual household, where one of my father’s best friends was a Native woman who I would define as a medium or spirit worker. She was like a second mother for me when I was growing up, and she taught me many useful things from a young age, including how to use my (what has now been popularly labeled) “god phone”. She and my father were some of the first people I shared my early experiences of Loki with, and he became my close companion not just in the dream world, but in my everyday life as well. My father bought me my very first book of Nose Myths around this time (which was “Nordic Gods and Heroes” by Padraic Colum). These stories made me even more enamored with Loki and his world, and I was hooked ever since.

From 1995- 2004 I was practicing a solitary blend of eclectic paganism/heathenry that was mostly inspired by my individual practice with Loki and books by pagan writers (such as Freya Aswynn and pretty much anything with a Norse title I could get my hands on) along with the Eddas. Some of these books had positive things to say about Loki, some of them had negative things to say. The negative interpretation of Loki as essentially the Norse Satan ran so contrary to what I had personally experienced of Loki (who had never brought me anything but blessings and good advice) that I tended to tune out those parts and ignore it. It has never ceased to hurt my heart when I read full on antagonistic descriptions of Loki, but in 20+ years it’s never altered my opinion.

Around 2005 I finally decided to actively seek out Heathens in my area, and became involved with a local group who I remain friends with to this day. Initially, some of the members were nervous regarding my devotion to Loki, but the unease slowly began to dissolve as we got to know each other better. I think it was during this time that I decided that, in any way I could, I wanted to be a good “ambassador” for Loki in the Heathen community. This has often meant learning to swallow my pride, and being willing to really listen to other’s points of view in order to be heard, but this philosophy has never steered me wrong.

In 2006, I decided to finally join one of the major Heathen organizations. I chose the Troth because of its open door policy towards people of all ethnicities and sexual orientations. Through the Troth I began to make friends in the wider Heathen community, and have been a member ever since.

So why was sharing my autobiography necessary you may ask? I just wanted to demonstrate that I’ve been an active worshipper of Loki for 20 years, and have been a sometimes observer, sometimes participant in the Heathen community specifically for about 10 years. I’ve had quite a long time to develop my own ideas about who Loki is and what it means to be a Lokean (ideas which have always been evolving, and I hope always will), and I’ve also been observing the shifting opinions that the Heathen community holds about Loki and Lokeans for a long time. I therefore might have some insight that people who are newer to the concept of Loki and “Lokeans” might find useful.

Get on with it! What is a Lokean?

Back when I first started to explore Heathenry, the word Lokean was used to describe a Heathen or Pagan whose “patron” or “fulltrui” was Loki, or someone who viewed Loki positively and included them in their worship. I think I first came across this word on the now defunct “Loki Cult” website, before I adopted it to describe myself. Since that time, my exact definition hasn’t changed all that much. A Lokean is someone who (whether they describe themselves as Heathen, Pagan, or something else) worships and works with Loki as the primary deity in their personal practice. Some people in the past few years have begun to use the word Lokean as if it were an independent religion in its own right, which has never been my understanding. In my opinion, taking Loki completely out of his cultural landscape and focusing only on him to the point of ignoring the existence of the other Norse Gods essentially strips him of his role in the natural and spiritual world. Being aware of who he is and how he interacts with the other gods in his Pantheon is important, but I don’t think it’s mandatory that someone identify as “Heathen” in order to be Lokean. However, many did and still do.

I think it is a very important distinction to make that not all people who identify as Lokean identify as “Rökkrtrú”. I am personally not a fan of this label, though some people under the Heathen umbrella do choose to use it. Because many new Lokeans have despaired of being accepted by mainstream Heathenry (whether that is due to running into Heathens that aggressively oppose the worship of Loki, or because of an expectation that all Heathens hate Loki) some have embraced this title, which I think has led to it becoming a widespread term, despite the fact that it was never used in antiquity. Because I tend to view the Jötunar as a class of deities in their own right like the Titans were in ancient Greece, I tend to see the word Rökkr as superfluous and as carrying unnecessary stigma that tends to further alienate the deities who are granted this title in the minds of Heathens. However, that is only my opinion, and I mean no disrespect to individuals who have embraced this title.

How do you become a Lokean?

There is no specific “oath” involved in becoming a Lokean, and no agreed upon model of worship. Before one starts throwing oaths around, I think it’s important to understand the function of an oath in modern Heathenry, and how they’re supposed to effect you in the spiritual and physical world. Oaths aren’t thrown around liberally in most Heathen circles, and making an oath is perceived as tying your destiny, your luck/personal power, and your honor to your word. If anyone else is present for your oath, it is widely believed that their luck and honor is on the line as well, since they are expected to help you uphold your word. Making an oath to a god is tying your destiny, your fortune, and your life to them, for good or for ill. People who break their oaths are highly looked down upon in modern Heathenry, and some might go as far as to say that oath breakers have no place in the community, or are even cursed. Some believe that if you break your oath to a god for any reason, they may decide to exact their own recompense from you at their own discretion (and potentially from anyone who witnessed the oath but didn’t hold you to your word).

Some kindreds put a safety-net in place before someone makes an oath, and a price is agreed upon that the person making the oath will pay if they break the oath or discontinue the oath for any reason. In the case of making an oath of devotion and service to Loki, whether asking him to be your fulltrui, husband, or friend, I would suggest creating an agreed-upon payment that you will give him in the case that the oath is broken for any reason. This isn’t intended to be a loophole where you make an oath to Loki, pay him when you screw up, and then oath again. The point is that you are hurting your own power by damaging the integrity of your word, and continuously doing that can have negative effects on your overall success and effectiveness in life.

There are also timed-oaths, where you make an oath to do something until a designated time. This might be the safest way for a new devotee to approach an oath of devotion to Loki: agree to honor him as your fulltrui for a certain amount of time. If you both find this to be a favorable arrangement after the designated time, you can move onto more long-term agreements from there. In either case, I suggest that contacting a diviner that you trust and who has proven themselves to be effective may be helpful in determining whether or not Loki agrees to the terms you’re creating. An oath to a god is a two way street, and they may accept your oath or not.

Any oath you make to Loki is between you and him, and if you are primarily worshipping Loki in your practice, or have made some kind of oath of devotion to him, then you have the right to call yourself Lokean, even if someone (the author included) doesn’t agree with your specific worship practices.

Is it safe to worship Loki?

This really is kind of a loaded question. To be 100% honest, no, I don’t think it always is “safe” to worship Loki…. or Odin, or Freyja, or any god that holds dominion over powerful, life-shattering transformation. One of the hardest lessons I’ve had to learn in working with Loki has been coming to terms with his role as a god of chance. Where Odin aligns himself with the force of destiny, Loki is in alignment with the happy accident: the quick, powerful shifts in fate, which can bring down nations and permanently alter our destinies. He is pure potential with no boundaries or expectations. That place of pure potential isn’t a place where human beings can live forever. Trying to live in that place of Loki’s pure energy of transformation can be extremely disorienting and disorganizing and I think this is where Loki’s reputation as a god of “chaos” truly comes from. Nothing can ever find completion or stable ground in pure potential, and it’s my personal belief that anyone who is deeply aligned with Loki will (sooner or later) need other stabilizing powers in their lives to ensure that the Lokean in question doesn’t become trapped in a whirlwind of potential with no direction. The gods are real, and the gods are powerful, and playing with gods can actually affect your life in subtle ways you may not expect. This is one pitfall that lies in new devotees flocking to the god Loki because of their affection for a character in a movie named Loki, without any real understanding of who the real Loki is, what he represents, or how his energies are going to effect them in the real world. I have met many Lokeans who have gone through stages where they have been living in the chaos of pure potential (myself included) and can’t seem to get their lives together. Finding outlets for stability and direction is important for anyone who has been called by Loki.

It’s also important to remember that Loki is not always a nice, gentle, guy, who will tell you everything is wonderful about you (even your faults) and bring you flowers on the weekend. He is a trickster and a transformer. If you are lying to others or, even worse, lying to yourself, his lessons can rip your life to shreds and force you to see what really lies behind all of your masks. He is the cremation fire that will burn away all of your comfortable illusions and expose you for who and what you really are. He is not a comfortable god, and he is not always a “nice guy”. He can be a real dick sometimes, and not just to the people you personally think are full of shit: That axe swings both ways. If you aren’t prepared to transform, potentially destroying every illusion of yourself you’ve ever clung to, don’t try playing house with Loki.

Loki is also very childlike in many ways, much like the Orisha Eleggua. He can be possessive, moody, and impulsive. If I did every single thing that popped into Loki’s head, my life would be in shambles. In this lies another Lokean lesson: Sometimes, he may try to push you as far as he can, just to see where it is you’ll stand up for yourself and draw your own lines. Self-respect and living in accordance with your chosen destiny is an important lesson of Loki’s.

A god can’t change its nature, and they are who they are. I would therefore caution not to make any promises or agreements with Loki you are not expecting to mindfully keep for the rest of your life. Making an oath to Loki because of your newfound excitement over him, the Thor movies, or his hype on the Internet may feel good in the moment. However, 40 years down the line when you may have moved onto new spiritual paths (or no spiritual paths), the hype of your earlier interests has simmered down, and you have either forgotten or disregarded the oaths you made to a Norse deity once upon a time, that could seriously come back to haunt you. Loki is a god of transformation, of change, of trickery, and sometimes of destruction. You also have to keep in mind that when you’re dealing with Loki, sometimes it’s like dealing with a kid. What would happen if you promised a kid you were going to get them an ice-cream cone every Sunday and then forgot about it or just stopped? Probably a big, freakin’ tantrum. Aligning yourself with Loki’s energy and then ignoring it could cause it to flare up in unexpected ways in your life, like a child’s unrestrained cry for attention. Loki is what he is, and just because you think that you are one of his “special people” will not exempt you from learning some of the harder lessons he may have to teach. He is not a human being, he is a force of nature, and doesn’t play by the rules of human social conventions.

With those things beings said, for some people, no other god “fits” for them better than Loki. There are some people whose energy is naturally in alignment with the kind of energy that Loki carries, and who can carry and deal with this energy in ways that may not work for others (just like any other god or goddess). Herein lies the wisdom of Lucumi, which has spiritual technology in place to identify your energy, and align it with what it needs to become even better. Sometimes who we think we are and what we think we need doesn’t match up with reality, and we can trick ourselves into believing we’re something we’re not. There is no other god or goddess that makes me feel the sense of devotion, peace, and completion that Loki does. However, I recognize that this does not mean that Loki is the god for everyone, or that aligning oneself with his energy will be beneficial for everyone. This is why I think it’s important that before you make an oath or agreement with Loki, you should spend some time getting to know who he really is, how his energy actually operates in your life, and if your life is getting better or worse when you’re in alignment with that energy.

Do Lokeans have an honor code?

I think that many people within Heathenry probably assume that because Lokeans have seemingly read the Eddas and have “chosen” to worship Loki despite the fact that he is obviously an agent of evil and chaos in the world, that we have no honor system, or somehow stand for the destruction of all that is good and decent. This is absolutely untrue. Often times I’ve found that people who are critical of Loki don’t seem to be talking about the same Loki that I am, and I’ve developed my relationship with Loki from a point of personal experience (which many Loki critics haven’t). Maybe this makes me delusional, but if that’s the case, maybe we’re all delusional and we should all accept Jesus as our lord and savior ASAP.

As I explained in my own account, I believe that from the very beginning, Loki chose me, not the other way around. I also believe that because my personal interactions with Loki began long before I had time to be indoctrinated by the idea that he is a force of evil, this has never colored my perception of who he is. It is my personal belief that Snorri’s descriptions of Loki in his Edda were highly influenced by his own need to cast a villain in his Balder story, and Völuspá (which itself was highly influenced by the Book of Revelations and the doomsday narrative which was so popular in the 10th century, when it was most likely composed). I also do not believe that Ragnarök is a single, future event, in which all of human kind will have to take a stand with the “good guys” against the “bad guys” (but that’s a different article for a different day). Loki does have an honor code, and so do the people who worship him.

That being said, Loki is a trickster deity, which gives him a different code of ethics than most other deities in the pantheon. There are a few major roles that a trickster plays within its respective pantheon, many of which remain consistent across cultures. Trickster is there to challenge (and thereby, often reinforce) social norms. If Trickster screws up big time by breaking a social taboo, his story helps to reinforce why that taboo is in place. Trickster is also there to remind us to lighten up, and to laugh at our own ridiculous human natures. Sometimes we can become so self-righteous and so entrenched in our own beliefs and egos, that Trickster appears to hold up the mirror and make us really look at ourselves, question our motives, and perhaps most importantly, laugh at ourselves. Trickster is the speaker of unpleasant truths. He’s the little boy that points out that the Emperor has no clothes on. He’s here to point out our hypocrisy, our injustices, and our biases, so we’ll hopefully grow into more functional human beings. Trickster is also a creator and a destroyer. He creates people, nations, and worlds, and he also destroys them so that new paradigms can be created.

In order to perform these functions, Trickster always needs to be a liminal figure. He is someone who can move between extremes in order to present the truths and follies of all sides. He moves between male and female, different races, chaos and order, and is never really fully any of them. He is a shape-shifter so he can experience and compare all possible realities. He is not the enemy of order; he is the enforcer of balance between chaos and order and is the instigator of action. Stagnation brings rot. Whenever things are becoming stagnant, it is Trickster who acts as the force of action.

These are very subtle virtues, which don’t necessarily spark the same emotional reaction as words like justice, victory, and family, which are ascribed to other deities in the Norse pantheon; nor do any of Loki’s positive qualities fit comfortably within our romanticized vision of a Viking warrior culture. Loki isn’t famous for being a warrior; he’s famous for his cunning. Out of all of the gods and goddesses, only Loki has the power to find a solution to any problem and think outside the box. Even Odin can’t think his way out of a fix the way that Loki can. He may create turmoil in his quest for action and transformation, but without Loki, what stories about the gods would be left? And how boring would our mythos be without anyone to push boundaries?

With Loki as our focus of worship, what kind of code should Lokeans honor? Holding a sense of flexibility and being able to adapt and transform. We should be continuously working on ourselves, bettering ourselves, transforming ourselves in alignment with our quest for authenticity. We should never become so rigid in our ways of thinking and believing that it becomes impossible for us to see anyone’s truth but our own: part of the role of the trickster is to walk the line between extremes and thus find a place of common ground between them. This means learning to walk a mile in anyone’s shoes in order to come from a place of genuine understanding.
We should be strong enough and brave enough to speak the truth, especially when it needs to be spoken and nobody else has the cojones to do it. There is, however, a careful line that needs to be trod here. Some people mistake speaking the truth with speaking their fervent opinion, and begin to see anyone whose perception is different from theirs as the enemy of the truth. This means learning to speak your truth from your heart, not your ego, which says: “I’m right, and anyone who says I’m not is persecuting me.” Being a devotee of the trickster means being willing to turn that own harsh finger on yourself before you turn it on anyone else. It also means being able to discern between the things we just dislike and true injustices that need to be challenged.

Perhaps the most powerful tool at the trickster’s disposal when facing these challenges is humor. Back in the day, it was only the Jester that was allowed to criticize the king through humor, thus becoming an unthreatening outlet for the voice of the people. Being able to laugh at yourself is a prerequisite; otherwise you may begin to embody the dogmatic attitudes you are opposing. Laughter, when not being used as a weapon of attack, allows us all to examine the truth in a neutral, deflated setting.

Living with the trickster also means knowing when it’s time to create new things and when it’s time to let old things go. This can be one of Loki’s hardest lessons. We often build our identities around exterior, vulnerable concepts: what we do for a living, our religions, our relationships, our communities. When those things stop serving us, or even start hurting us, they can be some of the hardest things in our lives to let go of, because we mistakenly believe that they define who we are as people. Loki is a god that always pushes you to dig deeper, to get to the true heart of our beings, and to learn that all of these things are vulnerable to change. It’s up to us to find the core of our being, which can be transformed but never destroyed. Nothing is permanent but change, and Loki can teach you to be a reed in the wind (even if you have to learn the hard way).

Is it the goal of Lokeans to be controversial?

An accusation that has been leveled against Lokeans as long as I can remember, is that they are only interested in Loki in order to appear controversial. In reality, what “controversial” means, has changed from generation to generation, and I personally believe that Loki’s reputation as the god of “outsiders” has more to do with Snorri’s depiction of him as the “enemy from within” than anything else. Some 19th century artists, such as Mårten Eskil Winge seem to have portrayed Loki as purposefully Semitic, reflecting a time period where romantic European nationalism was beginning to take hold and the Jews were the feared “other”. As modern Heathenry began to develop in some circles as a predominantly male, heteronormative, and in some cases sexist tradition, groups such as the Odinic Rite have identified forces in the world they see destructive (such as the “gay agenda” and “women’s lib”) as the vehicles of Loki. Others have suggested that Loki really represents Jesus, who destroyed the old religion. Other people use Loki to point out the destructive nature of racial mingling. Out of all the gods, Loki has been selected to be the “other”, no matter who each respective group believes the “other” is. Sometimes, this can be as simple as taking behavior or qualities one personally sees as repellant, and then projecting those things onto an exterior enemy (i.e. Loki).

So what do Jews, women’s lib, the “gay agenda”, and mixed-race relationships have to do with Loki? Actually, nothing. If wearing clothes made of burlap was considered by any group to be socially taboo, I’m sure that Loki would have been called the god of burlap at one time or another. The reality is, that in many ways Loki (like the Devil of Christianity) has been singled out as the scapegoat on which to project those things that we fear, revile, or vilify. Within Heathenry, he has often become the scapegoat for all of our perceived “sins”, whether real or imagined. How much of these projections actually say something about Loki’s character, or that of the person who is creating their own image of Loki, is up for debate.

I have actually never met a person who actively worshipped Loki in an attempt to make themselves appear controversial (I’m not saying they may not exist, I’ve just never met them). Some people who fall outside the realms of social normality are drawn to Loki, because they resonate with the image that has been built around him as an “outcast”. I tend to reject the image of Loki as the “god of outcasts”, and rather see him as the god of liminal figures: people who for any reason, live within more than just the accepted reality. In our modern culture, this may mean gay people, transsexuals, the transgendered, people who live with physical or mental illness, biracial people, people in a biracial relationship, people with dual citizenship, foreigners, immigrants, artists, anyone who straddles two realities or challenges the accepted reality. Whether or not these people have been considered “outcasts” has largely depended on their social environment at the time. Sometimes people such of this have been elevated and valued for their unique experiences. Other times they have been reviled as enemies of conformity. I would therefore say it is not at all a prerequisite to be controversial or an outsider to be a Lokean, though you may find that people with a liminal life experience will be drawn to Loki, because out of all the gods he embodies and expresses their own experience in a way that they can relate to. Loki is both Jötunn and Æsir, male and female, chaotic and constructive, good and bad, and he is also none of these things.

Do you have to marry Loki to be a Lokean?

When I was first introduced to Heathenry as a child, the only person I can recall ever claiming to have married a Norse god was Freya Aswynn, who underwent a marriage rite to Odin. Whether or not these kinds of unions were taking place before or at the same time, I have no idea. The next time I heard about god-marriage, with was around 2007, when I was first became familiar with the writing of Galina Krasskova, Raven Kaldera and Elizabeth Vongvisith, who to my knowledge was the first person to publically declare her marriage to Loki. Here and there I would hear accounts of people undergoing marriage vows with their gods, which I assumed resembled rites such as Marriage Lwa or the marriage vows that Nuns make to Jesus. When the Thor movie came out in 2011, I observed an explosive boom on the Internet of women (both young and old) who were claiming the title of “Loki’s wife”. I personally believe that the intersection of fandom and Heathen blogs were the formula that created this particular concoction, and I’ve already addressed how I’ve seen this influx effect Loki’s image in Heathenry in my (now somewhat controversial) article, 4 Reasons Heathens Hate Lokeans (By a Lokean).

In reality, I wrote the abovementioned article because I was becoming very frustrated in the trend that I was observing, where people were writing about their religious experiences with Loki with the same degree of reverence that they might write a DeanXSam sexy Supernatural fan-fiction. Because of this tendency towards over-sharing their sexual experiences (whether real or imagined) with a Loki who bears a striking similarity to Tom Hiddleston, I have seen this trend do more damage to Loki’s image within Heathenry than anything else in recent history. Any positive or constructive discussion about Loki’s role within Norse Paganism in the past has sadly become completely eclipsed by the current belief that all Lokeans are teenage girls with Tumblr accounts and reactionary crybabies, and Loki must foster that kind of behavior in people. Therefore, not only is he “evil”, but he’s also become a joke of a god who isn’t worthy of any serious worship. Sadly, not many people who have embraced Loki in this way and are completely new to Heathenry have seen how this new movement has made the perception of Loki within Heathenry even worse than it was before. Not only is it worse, but it’s now also become something of a running gag. My frustration comes from a deep love of Loki and a dislike of his name being further dragged through the mud.

Does this mean that there are no serious worshippers who use their marriage to Loki as a devotional act? No, there certainly are people out there who take their priestess/wife vows to Loki very seriously, and attempt to be positive presences in their own communities. These same serious worshipers would also tell you that there is also absolutely no prerequisite to marry Loki in order to worship Loki. However, because of the overwhelming voices of the new Loki brides on the Internet, I tend to see many people succumbing to a kind of passive peer pressure, where they may feel that their “seriousness” as a worshipper of Loki depends on marrying him in the eyes of their contemporaries. I suspect that marrying Loki has become a merit badge for new worshippers to prove how deeply Loki loves them. In many cases this seems to be turning into a competition between Loki wives, in which an inflated sense of drama and unworthiness seems to be making them miserable more than it seems to be empowering them. I would therefore encourage anyone considering jumping on the Loki-bride bandwagon to really wait and see how your relationship with Loki develops naturally as the Marvel hype inevitably begins to wind down. You don’t need to make yourself a carbon copy of the Lokeans you’ve met online in order to be a real Lokean. All of that is between you and Loki.

Better yet, get off the Internet. Stop seeking validity from strangers on the other side of a computer screen. Go out in nature (Heathenry is a nature religion, and Loki is a nature god) and spend some real time with Loki and experience his power on your own. Develop your own rituals for him and your own relationship with him that doesn’t include lighting a digital candle in a chat room. Get all of the other voices out of your head, and then you’ll be able to hear what your heart is really telling you.

Are all Lokeans girls?

Perhaps because of the massive influx of Loki brides, there are probably currently many more females publically identifying as Lokeans than males (though that is only my best guess). In reality, I have met many men who identify as Lokean, and many of them have been some of the most honorable, witty, and interesting guys I’ve ever met. If you are a male or male-identified person who is being called by Loki, don’t despair that you need to fit into the “Loki wife” mold in order to be a Lokean. There is nothing “unmanly” about being a man who worships Loki. Loki’s masculinity may not always be stereotypical, but he’s still a masculine figure that can empower men who likewise, may express and experience their masculinity in non-typical ways.

Are there really any “Lokean elders”?

Just as in any group (or sub-group) there are some people who have been at this “Lokean” business longer than others. In my opinion, doing something for a while longer than some other people doesn’t automatically grant you the title of “elder”, though some Lokeans have chosen to adopt it. However, there is no Lokean committee that grants the title of elder, and whether or not you choose to regard a Lokean as your elder should be dependent on whether or not a more experienced person has helped to guide and uplift your own spiritual experience. If you feel like someone deserves the title of your elder, that’s up to you to bestow it.


In conclusion, I would like to affirm to my readers that everything I have said comes from my own 20 years of experience. This may not be your exact experience. I didn’t start out worshipping Loki with all of these understandings, or with this level of “seriousness”, and I’ve failed a lot along the way. My perceptions might change and evolve in another 20 years. It’s hard to say what Loki worship will look like in the future, and what it means to be “Lokean” may transform by then as well. I’m far from perfect, I’m not a Lokean guru, but hopefully my experience has something to offer new seekers.

Because of constant questions about what kind of positive example Loki could possibly set for his Lokean worshippers, I’d like to leave you with a list of nine “Lokean virtues” that I’ve compiled. Whether or not Heathens need the 9 Noble Virtues at all is highly debatable, and this list is admittedly something I’ve pulled out of my own ass. You may or may not resonate with this list, so take what you like as guidelines if you need them. Feel free to ignore the rest:

  1. Truth: Be real. Be true to yourself as much as you are to others. Don’t apologize for who you are.
  2. Humor: Learn to find the humor in all things, especially in yourself. This is how we learn not to be self-righteous assholes.
  3. Humility: If you need to tie your balls to a goat to get shit done, suck it up buttercup.
  4. Cunning:Try to think outside the box. Don’t make a mess so big that you can’t think your way out of it.
  5. Transformation:Don’t be afraid of change, because that’s how we grow. Don’t be afraid of self-examination and listen to constructive criticism.
  6. Creativity:Create awesome stuff. Try new things out. If you don’t like it, blow it up and try again.
  7. Accountability:You are the only one in charge of your own destiny, your own life, and your own actions. Own your shit.
  8. Empathy:Try to see things from more than one perspective. Walk a mile in someone else’s shoes before you pass judgment.
  9. Experimentation: A mistake is only a mistake if you do it twice. Until then, everything is an experiment.