At Loki’s Hands, Part 4: Closer

Submitted by Myriad Hallaug Lokadis.

The following post was originally written as a contribution for 2013’s July for Loki. My devotional project in July was called At Loki’s Hands; it consists of four drawings, each representing roughly a quarter of the past year—my first year as a devotee to Loki—and how I experienced Him during that time. In the first post, Tapped, I described my first awkward forays as a newly-tapped worshipper. The following two pieces, Weaving the Net and Truceless, explore how I connected with Him on a more personal level, and the very slow, very reluctant forming of trust. The piece below is the last in the series, picking up around mid-February of this year.

My decision to submit it was inspired by the Godsmouths 2.0 project “A Day In The Life” that encourages us, the readers, to write about our everyday devotional practice. This is my account of how my devotional practice started becoming what it is today.

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A Day in the Life–Elayne: mother and Wiccan priestess with Crossroads ATC

My daily practices are always in flux, as I think they are for most of us.  As we grow and learn, we drop practices that no longer serve us, and pick up new ones that do.  I am gradually returning to regular daily spiritual practice after many years of mostly being a minor kitchen witch.  I’ve made a new commitment over the past couple years to find ways to pursue my devotions while integrating my spiritual life with my busy, busy family life.

I’ve been taking T. Thorn Coyle’s Crafting a Daily Practice course this summer, looking for a more structured guide for delving deeper into my self and finding new ways to nurture my spirit.  The course has been very helpful, and I’m barely halfway through.  I look forward to finishing, and continuing to work with her book.

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What we do with our heads

When I was directed to shave my head the first time, I missed the point. I knew what the reasons behind the directive were, but I didn’t get it. It took place at a weekend-long Beltane celebration in 2007 and it was my first time attending a pagan event with the intention of participating in and embracing the ritual aspect of it. The head-shaving happened on Sunday, the last day of the event, and took place in the driveway of the farm hosting the weekend, as that was the closest source of electricity. My teacher at the time buzzed off my long mohawk with clippers and we bagged up the hair. One bag went to my then teacher, one bag went home with me, and one bag went to a person who had a significant role in my life at the time. That person stepped up next and took off what hair was left behind by the clippers with a razor. I grinned the whole time, as it felt incredibly freeing to be completely bare to the world in that specific way.

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A Day In The Life – Costel Hildr

Costel Hildr of The Infinte Battle presents a Day In Their Life 

I thought I’d transcribe what I do in a typical day. I contemplated on writing about Saturdays/Laugardag or about Wednesday, but those are strange days. So:

I often wake up around noon to 3pm.

I usually roll around in bed, angry at myself for having slept later than I meant to, but then also grumbling because if I didn’t sleep, I would be massively tired. No real win in this situation. I always need a lot of sleep and I can barely fall asleep before sunrise. Something about it. I just need to watch the sunrise in the morning.

I tell myself to get up out of bed.

Then I grumble and curl under the covers pretending the world doesn’t exist for a moment.

I usually text my mate, we Role Play (RP). I play as, primarily, Tony Stark, or whoever needs to be in the RP: including Odin, Fenrir, and others; my mate RPs as Loki. It’s a Marvel MCU and for some reason my fulltrui, actual “real” Loki loves that I do this. We introduced a lot about gods, theology, and things like ways to make offerings to gods. It’s a form of writing and Loki prefers that I make art. In fact, ’13’s Lokablot, He said: Make art for me. In a lot of ways, I consider this art. It’s a form of impromptu art. Planned, but not too planned. We do this for about an hour. Then I look at the time and get a little more angry at myself for wasting time.

I get up and go to my laptop and waste time on Tumblr, Twitter, FB, emails, and checking blogs for an hour. Then realize I’ve still not done anything and most of the day has been wasted.

I angrily make tea and eat some yogurt.

Then I flit around, unsure of what to do.

I walk by my public altar for Loki and clean things up.

Then I go back to my laptop and usually find a prompt for an article. I then write for several hours—for my blog, in general.

Annoyed that I spent the entire day inside at my computer, I go out on to the balcony and read. I have some books that Loki and Hel and others think would be beneficial for me to read. Right now as I type, I’m reading Duel with the Devil, which is about the first sensational murder in the USA.

I pass out. I also fall asleep when I read.

Groggy, I get up.

I feel like an idiot and a failure. Whatever happened to, oh I don’t know, doing good and awesome things for my gods? What about helping restore the shitty parts of the city or helping prisoners or the homeless and poor or children or educating people? Failure. That’s what I am. I just passed out on my sheepskin rug and twiddled my thumbs on the internet. Dammit.

I go back to my laptop and find a documentary or TV show or movie to watch. I knit while watching. (Right now, I’m making a “flame hair” hat which is red, orange, and another orange-color and is in the pattern to make it look like fire.)

Night falls and I pour water on a rock. Don’t ask me why, the landvaettir just like it. They want it at sunrise and sunset and it has to do with the sun/Sunna and moon/Mani, and I don’t know.

I check my ancestral altar and change the water and fiddle with things on it.

I thank the apartment-dwelling vaettir.

I make dinner and pick out the alcohol for the night (I like my variations). I place dinner (food and drink, in smaller portions than myself; I’m really strapped for cash and I barely have enough to give to him as well) on my personal altar for Loki and sit down on my bed, which is right next His altar because I don’t have room for a table and chair for me. I light some candles and/or incense.

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A Day in the Life: A Gods’ Mouths 2.0 Project

As our mission statement declares, here at Gods’ Mouths 2.0 we have a deep interest in how people live and practice their spirituality, their magic, and how they conduct their devotional lives, if they have one. We place a high value on diversity in practice and identity, as well as authenticity in the way of being true to ourselves to to what we desire spiritually and/or magically, as well as being true to what our Powers desire of us, if we interact with the Divine in that way.

With that in mind, we are launching an ongoing project called A Day in the Life. We want to hear about what a day in your spiritual, magical, or devotional practice looks like. We’d love for you to share what you do on a ‘normal’ day or what you do on a more special day. Do you interact with your Powers on a daily basis? Do you work your craft in the evenings or the mornings? Have you found a sacred space out in the world that you spend time at regularly? Do you struggle to maintain a daily practice? Are you working to find a path that feels comfortable to you?

We want to hear all about it, and we want to share it with the community of readers that visits Gods’ Mouths 2.0.

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Out of the Frying Pan.

As of two days ago, I have found myself in an interesting and somewhat unexpected position. Okay, somewhat unexpected may be the understatement of the year, but that’s neither here nor there. It’s not surprising to me, but it was not expected in the least.

I was going about my regular life the other night and was speaking with a friend and colleague about my new business venture that I am getting close to launching. We were chatting about how I was planning on offering some divination services in line with some other spiritual services when it happened. The conversation totally got hijacked by the Powers That Be. It went from ‘I think this is what I might do’ to my friend telling me ‘So, this is what you need to do and, huh, there’s Someone telling me you need to do it’. This is how things tend to unfold in my life—something run-of-the-mill is happening and then it suddenly takes on importance in a way that I neither expected nor asked for.

it was immediately clear that this Someone was not one of the Powers that I usually work with. That in and of itself was quite surprising, as I have essentially been on deity lock-down since I began walking this path. My Patron has seen fit only to let me converse with and Work for Him, two other Powers that I had sworn an oath to at one point, and another Power that had a prior claim. Imagine my surprise when Someone Else came knocking.

Over the course of two days, my friend and I spent about six hours trying to figure out who He was. She got the visions and the conversation and we both sat and revved up Google to try and find a name to what He was describing Himself as. He didn’t make it terribly easy, as He does not appear to be a big talker and because He seemed to find amusement in my frustration, but we worked pretty damn hard and I think we figured it out. I’m not 100% certain yet, but what we managed to piece together both did not get dismissed out of hand by Him and absolutely fits with what He has said and how He presented Himself.

It appears that I have been handed over in some way to an Orisha. There are many things that, if I think rationally about them, are unsurprising. I have been pushed for years to explore African Diasporic Religions [ADRs]. I practice traditional African-American magic. I have had the privilege of meeting quite a few Lwa and Orishas. So, you say, what’s the big deal? It’s kind of lined up for me, isn’t it?

The catch, at least to me, is that I’m white.

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