(Insert Catchy Title) or Screw you, brain

Well. I suppose a bit of a CW;TW is fair here. Mental health/illness/problems, suicidal thoughts/ideations, and other bits of personal whining.

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Ok, should be far enough for most previews.

One of the things that I have accepted as a Lokean is that change is a constant. In my life and in the world around me. Situations arise constantly that are changing how I interact with the world and that isn’t a bad thing. Scary for some sure, but not bad. Except when it is.

You see, for some reason that I do not know I went into a major depressive state yesterday afternoon and can’t figure out the why. While life has been far from sunshine and rainbows it has actually been rather good. My family has a place of our own, plenty of food, financially stable, just in a very good place as of right now. So why my brain shifted gears from “We’re Good! We’re Good! We’re Good!” to “We need to eat a bullet!” kinda took me by surprise.

Before anyone goes there, no I’m not fucking seeking attention. I know that I am Neurodivergent and have made peace with that. Then why am I writing this? To help myself work through it. To help others they may face the same thing and know they aren’t alone or going insane for it just happening.

Honestly I’m pissed at myself for feeling this way. What fucking reason do I have to feel like this? There is no obvious reason or trigger or event that has done anything to cause this so why? Why can’t I get my shit together and just move past it? Why is it every ten minutes has me thinking about horrible things? While the logical side of me know the answers, let me tell you folks; it sure doesn’t help the emotional side that is in charge right now. The side that wants to shuffle off into Oblivion. I won’t mind you, and as of right now I’m not in danger, at least I’m pretty sure. Been down this slide before.

What is getting me is that this time there was no obvious reason. It was sudden, hard, and upside the head. No fucking discernible reason. Let me tell you, that’s something that will fuck with you. And it isn’t just depression, oh no. Brought along it’s buddies fear and anxiety as well. I also have no idea how long those three are going to hang out either. Never do.

So what the Hel am I doing writing about this here in a public forum? What does it have to do with being Lokean or Rokkatru? What the fuck, man? Simple. There are a great many who suffer in silence. Who, like me, the moment they step out of their house slip on that perfected mask and will laugh and help and do. This I have noticed especially amongst Heathens, doubly so for Lokean and the Rokkatru. Perceived weakness and all that, even if those around us see it as a fight, we see it as being weak unable to control our own minds and feelings.

Which brings me to that whole “Ask for Help” movement. FUCK. THAT. The average person has absolutely no CLUE what is takes to ask for help, to admit that we feel the way we do because of so many reasons. Fear of judgement, of being shunned like we are contagious, of losing those we love. Shame that we aren’t strong, aren’t in control, that we feel this way in the first place. Embarrassment that will cause lies about reasons to why we can’t go out, or work, or deal with everyday life. Whether true are not we feel like failures.

Writing this, just writing this, I personally feel physically ill. Nausea, light headed, near panic, racing heart, the whole thing because I am determined to publish this. More of us, especially in the Heathen/Rokkatru community need to know that we are not alone, that there are those out here like us. We need to know that we can find a safe place to take off our masks. To shift into ourselves instead of the being that we are expected to be. And a great many of us aren’t even able to do that at our best times.

I fight this every gods-damned day, and recently have kept it at bay with a LOT of help of various forms, loved ones and community not the least among them. Some of you may be asking about that, about how to find an accepting community. I wish I could tell you how to do this, but I cannot because we are each wonderfully different. For me, I made that community. I used social media and formed a group and made a page (both of which this will be posted on).

All I can say to others out there, other Lokeans, other Rokkatru, my Tribe and people is don’t give up. Asking for help is one of the hardest things any of us will ever do, and some of us may not be able to at all. For those I hope that there are those that will ask you instead. If they do, tell them honestly how you are feeling. Please.

Now if you will excuse me I have a voice to go and argue with about some unsavory things.

Being Rökkatru Today

Before I really get going, if you have any questions about what Rökkatru is or who the Rökkr are I completely recommend that you check out the blog Divine Multiplicity. Specifically Tahni Nikitins’ contributions which can be found here.

The reason that I suggest the above is that I am going to be speaking from more opinion/observation (when don’t I) than from any academic position and may even throw in some (ready the outrage and horrified shock) UPG. It will also be centered geologically from the point of view from within the United States, because that is where I am located.

From an individual point, I am Lokean, 44, disabled vet (not you don’t get the list), and stay at home Dad. My writing and work on various projects will always take a back seat to the need of the Adorable Overlord, my little threenager. So there are times when a blog will take me literal hours to write as I stop to care for my little Jotun-child. She is my primary care and concern, along with my two teenagers. No, I will not go into detail about them in this setting other than to say that this particular blog was inspired in part by worry for them. I am also married to an amazing and beautiful Freya’s-woman, my soulmate and an amazing Mother.

I am currently walking the Path of Ordeals, an outline of which can be found by following the link. Yes the writer of this is Raven Kaldera, a figure that brings a LOT of mixed feelings in various groups. Not long ago I was tasked to do and complete certain things during a meditation, an actual “Honey-Do” list passed to me I fully believe by my Patron. The purpose of all of it was apparently not on the need-to-know list (grumble).

If you have made it this far (because a great deal of the above has been gone over in previous blogs), then get ready. Here is where it is going to get bumpy and more than slightly uncomfortable for some people.

I am White. I am Straight. I am Male. I am Privileged just because of the prior. I am also Pagan, Lokean, Rökkatru, an Ally, and believe that all hearts beat with life. I don’t care what you look like, how you identify, or the path you follow. I will give you respect and I will expect it in return. If I make an error and cause unintended insult or offense, PLEASE take a moment, call my ignorance and educate me!

Rökkatru are by their very nature are outsiders anyway. We should be learning from one another, not fighting with each other. Our fight here in the U.S. is with a much more dangerous threat. Today, RIGHT NOW, in my own home country there are concentration camps where children are dying after being separated from their parents who don’t even have the basic things given to actual US prisoners! Everyone talks (well thanks to digital attention spans not so much now) about how Flint, Michigan has poison water, when a UN investigator came and found worse than 3rd world conditions in the Southern U.S. such as open sewage and tainted water. The number of veterans that are homeless or commit suicide is staggering, along with LGBTQ+ youth. And what do we see on the news? Crap. Ten seconds to tell you that someone got shot and then fifteen minutes on sports where the players make more money in one season than most residents of the U.S. will see in their life.

And so very much more disgusting things. Thanks to so much media picking and choosing it has finally happened. They have managed to put polish on a turd and call it pretty. Convince so many it’s fine when the truth is that no matter how shiny they make it, it is still a piece of shit! And this is where how many live? Bigots and others like them screaming “Send the immigrants home!” and I say, “YES PLEASE! Send me back to Scotland(Mother’s side) or Denmark (Father’s side)!” Get me out of here.

Then I stop. I think. No, I was born HERE. THIS is my home. I am Lokean. I am Rökkatru. And while we are all still figuring out precisely what that means, I am fairly certain that running and quitting is NOT a part of that path. My children deserve to be safe and happy. My wife should NOT have to fear for her health because of corrupt politicians deciding what is best for HER body. No, no running. No hiding my Faith and Path. I’m done with all of that. My Deities are Primal and fierce and frightening for a reason. They accepted me for a reason. Loki accepted me for a reason those many years ago. So fuck them.

Rapists are getting six months in jail, while a teen from the inner city gets sixteen years for having some weed? Farmers crops fail and instead of Federal aid they are bought out by corporations, the government makes deals for the same crops elsewhere and banks get multi-billion dollar bail outs? Fuck that.

We as Rökkatru NEED to figure out who we are, what our Deities would ask of us, and how do we go about bringing the needed CHANGES to this nation? To this world? Yes, world. Why not think big? My own ways are bit… on the dirty fighting side. Hey I am Left Hand Path. The black and shadows don’t scare me. The spirits and entities don’t frighten me. I’ll throw a Hex/Curse with no hesitation if I believe it is deserved. Yes, I believe in more than most realize. But none of that matters as it is personal.

If you are Rökkatru, what does that mean to YOU precious reader? And what are you willing to do to follow that path? I know my answer. I know what I am willing to give and what I’m not. Imagine if the Rökkr had the united front the Aesir have. What could be accomplished? Because for us here in the United States it is only a matter of time. Before the outsiders and the different are the hunted. ICE is already raiding suburban neighborhoods to take natural born citizens into custody and forcing them to prove they are citizens. How long before it is illegal to worship in any way that doesn’t involve the cross here?

I hold a great deal back for my family. If something happens to me, it would send them into a tailspin and would lose too much. I can’t allow that to happen, but I still do what I am able. I protest until my body and mind force me away from the crowds. I write and call government bodies and representatives and demand to be heard. I do what I am able. If I could do what I want… well that is a completely different tale.

So at the end of the day, what does it mean to you to follow the Rökkr, the Deities of Twilight? What does your heart and soul demand of you? We have no need of circles or kindreds. We have Tribe.

Observations and Ramblings VII

My O and R blogs tend to be a chance for me to vent about various things and if I am feeling like it, to let down the walls a bit.

That being said, usually it is about things or trends I have seen within myself and society in general. On occasion, I will go off on a tirade to just vent and to let some things out on you poor readers. Over sharing or simply just letting it out. In my writing, as in my life, do I rarely allow real anger or hurt or frustration out. The reason for this is part of my being non-neurotypical, I know very well all that I am capable of (read into that as you will, you most likely wouldn’t be wrong), and I must be vigilant.

Now that being said, I write these for my own needs and if you get offended I believe the term is sorry not sorry. Continue reading as you will, if you want, and be aware that this one is going to be broken down into various sections.

Pagan Community: As a whole and from the outside for those that are drawn to it, it is a chance at fellowship and freedom. A chance to connect on a spiritual level that calls to the soul in a way that no other way can. Be it Heathen, Wicca, Druid, or and of the myriad other paths, when you find the fit to your soul it resounds loud and clear. Yet what so many are unaware of is the predatory nature of some within the community, those hungry for power or recognition, attention or titles instead of the spirit and the teachings. They are out there and I personally have seen and been taken in by them. And let’s not even get started on the ones that claim a Pagan path in order to be sexual predators under the guise of spirituality. Yes, sex is part and parcel of some paths and there is nothing wrong with that. I am talking about those in positions of power using that to coerce and demand sexual favors from members/initiates of their various groups. Consent is given, yes, but consent under duress… that isn’t real consent folks. And the cliques! Holiest of craps! Paganism is supposed to be inclusive, but so often it seems like a “Good Old Boys Club” (pardon the masculine expression), that someone new will never feel truly a part of a group unless they form their own. Inclusiveness is given lip service and on the surface is really tried for, but you will see it in large gatherings. Eventually different groups will break off and be suspicious of any outsider, granted never outwardly hostile, but still a new person will be made to feel uncomfortable. All the leads me to BNP’s. Big Name Pagans (or Big Nosed Pagans as you are inclined). I have met some that are absolutely amazing and I would sit for hours with just to listen to their wisdom. I have also met others that are complete shams that have let the recognition go to their heads. What I am getting at is that the Pagan Community definitely has its shadow side and if you believe otherwise you are either willingly blind, new, or…. well, yeah. And no, I am NOT talking about Left Hand Path in all this though they are and can be included as part of the community in whole.

Heathens: Nine Noble Virtues. Ancestors and the Nine Realms. The pack mules and muscle in Paganism, or at least how many treat them from the outside. If you are a follower of the Norse Paths, you must be willing to labor all day long and have more muscle than brain. Oh you don’t need recognition for your work, the work well done is reward enough. Bullshit. Gratitude goes a long way, and when you decide to take your Heathens for granted you will find them suddenly nowhere to be found. Heathens, your Kindreds tend toward elitist for fear of mixing Wyrd and having it “tainted”. You tend to shun any that follow any but the Aesir, and when they are allowed in you keep them to the fringes at arms length. As a whole in the United States you have let our sacred symbols slip into the hands of white supremacists by not keeping an eye out to begin with over the years. You CANNOT tell me that before this circus of a presidential cycle empowering the hatred and fear mongers Heathens didn’t know. I call bullshit. There were plenty of Kindreds out there that were Folkish and they were ignored. Those that spoke against them were ignored. NOW everyone is getting mad that our sacred symbols and runes are being co-opted by hate groups. Some groups Like the Troth and Hugnin’s Heathenhof are being truly more inclusive and Declaration 127 was a wonderful thing. But where are the shield walls standing against the marching Proud Boys? Those standing up and saying “This Hammer Smashes Fascists?” I’m not saying they aren’t there, but the silence is deafening. Pissy memes aren’t going to work.

Lokeans and Rökkatru: Oh… Now this is my path. For so very long I was a solitary and am again except virtually. And what I have seen online is beyond upsetting. Those who claim to follow Loki yet demand there is a right and wrong way to follow Him. Instead of banding together and seeking understanding from fellow outcasts, people get angry and turn into online high school shouting matches. I personally don’t care who is fucking right or wrong, get your shit together! We follow a shapeshifter that can appear as he will and if you don’t think that a God that tied his balls to a goat just for a laugh isn’t a touch into kink, take your puritan ass and sew your lips shut. We follow the Twilight Deities of the Norse Tradition, the Left Hand Path of Heathenism, and a Trickster. If you cannot tolerate some differences than I suggest another, more structured path. I hear Christians are always recruiting. We walk a path where we have to read between the lines of all the lore and tales. We have to pay attention to what isn’t said, and UPG (gasp!) plays an important role in our fairly new tradition. Yes there are those that have written about the subject, but they aren’t many and not always easy to agree with. And when it comes to the white supremacists our path is a bit more lacking in those numbers, but we are just as guilt about not standing against them. Where are the Children of Fenrir who would stand against those that would see others in chains? Where are my Lokeans that would fight those that would silence the Truth? Where are the Followers of Surt, ready to burn away the prejudice? We are the followers of the Jotunar, those who came before, and yes we are outsiders. But we are gathering and growing in number, however unless we get our collective shit together we will always be a laughing stock. For those of you trying to change this, I salute you and give you my thanks.

Have I pissed anyone off yet? Good.

In my life I have known loss, failure, pain, betrayal, love, joy, and much much more. I have spent some days away from social media and even personal messages. Short of texting or phone calls, I’ve limited my contact back to a less digital way. My life has been exceedingly busy on the mundane side of things and I haven’t been able to write as much as I would like. And that makes me wonder just how many will make it to this point in the blog. You see, our biggest enemy isn’t the proud boys or the predators or the fears of the outside world. This medium is grand for the spread of information (or misinformation), but in real life the everyday apathy I see is disheartening to a degree that is shameful. The “Not My Problem” syndrome this nation has developed is disgusting.

How do you fight for the better world? As a Pagan, how do you make sure you are being truly inclusive? Heathens, how many of you actually follow the Nine and have read the Havamal? Lokeans, how the fuck can you be judgemental when we have been judged for years just for the God we chose to follow?

I am a (mostly) straight white cis male, 44 years old, married, children. I have followed my path for over two decades. That’s over 20 years people. You think that I don’t know about discrimination? Not for my skin or sexual preference, but because I am not quiet about my beliefs I have lost jobs, lost out on opportunities, been turned away for VOLUNTEER WORK, refused entry into establishments, been harassed by neighbors and communities, been called satanist by police, even refused promotion and recognition in the military. I’ve been on the receiving end of violence. At this time I am disabled for various problems, and don’t want or expect pity.

No, there is no way I can understand the discrimination faced daily by other humans considered People Of Color, Women, or those of a different sexual preference. I am not trying to belittle or lessen their discrimination in any way. I have a SMALL understanding of it, and will do all I can to fight against it.

If you are a Leader, set the example and walk your talk. Show people the way and live what you speak, be there for them and if you claim Priest or Priestess in any form in any path, apathy should not be a part of you. If it is, drop the title and turn solitary, make way for someone that actually cares. Everyone is screaming for a better world, a better place in it.

But so few are willing to get their hands in the soil and get dirty.

Rökkatru and the Nine Worlds

Norse shadow walkers. Lokeans and Jotunkin. Most think us limited to one or two of the Nine Worlds, but is not the Agent of Discord free to roam the entirety of Yggdrasil? And if that fluffy-tailed creature isn’t Rökkr, I am not sure what you would consider him to be. We would be limited to only certain realms, forbidden from other planes by the beliefs of others. But in truth we have every right to walk where ever our Gods and Ancestors do.

Yes, realms like Jotunheim and Helheim are where you are more likely to find the Rökkatru spirit because those are the type of places we are drawn to, where we find solace and comfort. The fires of Musplheim or the frozen plains of Niflheim call to others as they are what offers peace to their souls and beauty to their eyes. The old and primal places, where dark twilight is eternal and beautiful, dark that soothes away the self doubts and where a misfit need not hide away.

But think about this. All the realms bear their shadows because there IS light. A realm of pure light? How could you know anything but blindness and pain? We are in all the Realms, even Asgard. There is Rökkr even in Valhalla. No? Then what would you consider Odin’s face as Lord of the Dead, Necromancer, Bringer of the Wild Hunt? Is that not a dark aspect, a shadow side?

We, the Rökkatru will be where we wish to be. None shall bar our path or our choice. We, as the Norse Left Hand Path, have the right to be where we desire. Just because others fear what we revere and seek to understand should not bar you from exploring the places our curiosity take us. Nor should we have to be made to feel shame for living in out truth, following our path.

I for one see the way we are treated on this plane, here on Midgard. Too often I see at festivals that are “Path Inclusive” the Heathen element are often regulated to manual labor when they want to help, rarely thanked, and when they have something to say many don’t want to listen because of their path. They are looked at as brainless muscled work mules. Those that do get heard are often put in a position that if something goes wrong, fault finds it’s way to Heathen hands. And other paths wonder why Heathens are a bit stand-offish. Personally I have witnessed Heathens walk completely away from festivals dear to them because they could no longer allow themselves to be treated as work horses and pack mules.

And within Heathenry the Rökkatru and Lokeans are often treated as the “bastard children” until they are needed. They/We are called on to “fix it”. Even if we weren’t the ones to cause the issue in the first place, others don’t want to get their hands “dirty”. Blood and Death are a needed part of Life, and while healing and light work is amazing and needed the opposite is true as well. Mercy is often a gentle thing, quiet and quick.

Safety and protection. Defenses and shield are effective. But it doesn’t stop the attacks. Violence is part of the cycle as much as love. Wisdom is only a step and a half away from Madness.

So for those reading this, remember that Heathen or no; the misfits have a place. The outsiders of your circle? Look at them closely and see how many wounds they have taken to keep you safe that you never knew of the threat. Open your eyes to the Left Hand for it is of the same body. To the Heathens that see this; we on the outside see you. We hear you speak of Honor and Ancestors. We watch from outside the sacred space as you call to the Divine of the Asatru and Vanatru and do your rites. We bow our heads and give our respect even from without. We hear your whispers degrading and belittling our Patrons and Patronesses, our Gods and Goddesses. We know that you don’t even see them as Divine. Yet we remain among you, silent and either unseen or kept at arms length. There must be a balance.

And I have seen that the truth is the fact that many think because of our path we will come howling for blood at Ragnarok. And we will, as we sail with the Rökkr proudly, but we will choose those of arrogance and willful ignorance. We will know the truth of what lies behind the shine of “Honor” and the palaces built on the backs of others. Use the Gods to justify Hate and we will know. Use the Goddesses to be exclusive, we will see. Use the Ancestors as an excuse for racism and we will hear. And we will howl as we hunt.

The drums are beginning. They call the Others from all of the Nine Realms. We are beginning to gather. We are the Jotunkin and the Lokeans, Children of Fenris and of Jormungadr. Voices for Ginnungagap. Those who dance with the wights and witches, sing with the trolls and giants. Those who remember that not all the ancestors names survive, but they did. Daughter of Hella, those not afraid to speak to Nidhogg. Drums whose beat reach Svartlheim and those who sit with the Dakkalfar, into the reaches of Niflheim calling back the spirits of those seeking the forgotten wisdom buried in ice. That beat that is drawing together souls to each other in Midgard.

We no longer walk alone. We have found each other. And we continue to find more. We walk the Nine Realms because we can.

The Growing Rökkatru

Rökkr. Jotun. Lokean.

These are terms that make many pagans, not just Heathens nervous. Why? Well why does someone that works with Hekate or Asmodeus make someone nervous. It is all the same reason and that is people are afraid of the dark. From the beginning of memory to many modern children we are taught to fear the dark. Stories, books, movies, and much more are based around this fact. But why? I, personally, am certainly no where near authorized to give any kind of professional opinion. Personally, I think it is because of the fact we can’t see and sight is one of the primary senses that a human relies on. Take that away and suddenly we are vulnerable. Every noise is a potential threat, the beast in the shadows waiting to tear us apart. Here’s the kicker; that isn’t always wrong.

And those that would walk with/in/along side that darkness are often judged harshly consciously simply due to the path that their heart was called to. Rökkr was a term first coined by Abby Helasdöttir of New Zealand (as far as I can find) and has grown in use to the USA, where it is being rather dismissed by many Heathens, and nearly unheard of among other Pagans.

Now, let’s take a moment and look at something. Odinist, Odinism, Asatru, and more than a few others have been co-opted by White Supremacist groups like that AFA (Asatru Folk Alliance), Sons of Odin (USA/Canadian branch of the EU Soldiers of Odin),Wolves of Vinland, and the Wolves of Odin (whose website really should be checked out because it was bought out from under them by someone with a grand sense of humor). These people claim Odin, Thor, Tyr, and many other Aesir among their patrons. Men, women, children all are among their numbers. They have even started using the sacred Runes in their symbology, especially Othila. They have desecrated the Volknüt and the Hammer.

Rökkatru would never defile. We honor the Ancestors and walk with them everyday just as every other heathen. We know the Nine Noble Virtues (our interpretation may differ), and the lore. We know the stories and tales and some of us even know the songs. What is different are the God/Goddesses we choose to follow. The “dark” ones, those who are chaos and destruction and yadda yadda yadda. I could spend PAGES on why this just simply isn’t so, but it’s a blog, not a book (y’all have to wait for that). Let’s just leave it that for whatever reason we are drawn to the dark archetype (an good read by the way and can be found here) and follow it as truly as any follower of Thor, Odin, or Freya.

We don’t go out of our way to cause issue or strife, but we are also not afraid of it. We are the ones that would go hunting at night for the village, because we knew the real dangers. We know that most “monsters” are simply being or things that most find repulsive or don’t understand. We are willing to go where others will not, and in turn we sacrifice much along the way, just as others do. Yes our Wyrd (fate, luck, energy) is different and some would say twisted that does not make us “bad”. Do some walk in the twilight and shadow? Follow the Left Hand Path? Yup, sure do. And I’m proud to say that I am one of them.

Near where I live, in a town called Alton, there is an annual event called “Bad People Do Good Things”. Mostly it is the Underground entertainers (burlesque performers, strippers, bikers, tattooists, fire performers, geeks, body suspensionist that use the hooks through flesh method, sex positive folks, and BDSM community) just to name a few. The Red Cross LOVES them as they raise more blood donations in one day than nearly any other time of the year. They gather food for those in need including the homeless. Clothing is donated, funds raised for local charities, etc. Now before you say anything nearly all these people also volunteer throughout the year at various charities and places for those in need. Without pay. Without thanks. Without recognition. And they do it happily.

These are the same people that have no issue beating someone bloody if it is deserved, or wrestling them to the ground for authorities to arrive. These are the people that when they see injustice aren’t part of the Apathy Observers filming the incident. They are the ones to step in either directly or indirectly. They speak up.

We are well aware of how we are seen. Yet we follow our hearts into the twilight and shadows of the Northern Traditions. We are the Rökkatru and we know the monsters within and without, and with patience and understanding have made allies of them. We do what we are called upon to do by our souls. You will know us by the Thorn. And if you seek shelter we will give it, for we know what it is like to be outcast, alone, and afraid.

The question I have is, will you walk with me and meet a monster or two?

Observations (Rambling the Third)

CW: Sex, pain, gaslighting . . . . . .

So. I want to talk about Polyamory as it seems to apply to a good number of Pagans, and especially Lokeans. At least the ones I have met. And many end up in explosive disasters that tear apart families. Fetishes come into play, and may not be shared by all partners. Sex without communication. Using emotions as tools to get what is wanted. Withholding not just sex, but touch itself as blackmail. More than a few cases of things getting too physical because of jealousy.

Now Poly life CAN work, but it takes work. The more people, the more emotions involved. Be honest, communicate, be open with how you are feeling, listen to hear not to just respond. You are opening your heart to multiple other hearts and they to you. Respect and understanding are going to go a LONG way. It seems that too many mistake Polyamory for Polyeros, love for sex.

Far far too much emotional and mental manipulation and abuse go on within pagan circles, as paganism can draw all kinds of people it will unfortunately draw the wrong type as well. The kind that are unable to own their own faults because someone else is always to blame. What do you mean I didn’t do …… , it wasn’t my job / I didn’t know I was supposed to, and on and on. Or they are the victim, no matter what. “Well I wouldn’t have done x if they hadn’t done y.” or “I know that was wrong, but I was pushed by what they did”. And the one Lokeans have to especially be on guard for is using neuro-divergence as a reason to not take responsibility for their own actions. “I don’t understand social situations”, “I have impulse control issues”, “I did it because I have …….”, or “I have problems understanding boundaries”.

I am a neuro-divergent that has a list of issues and they are at times the reason for my behavior I no longer use it as a crutch for toxic behavior. Yes, you read that correct, no longer. There was a time that I did these things and honestly felt that way. But even then when I screwed up I would own it. I would say it was my fault, and do all I could to fix it, but I would use my issues as an excuse for the behavior at the same time. Well, I got help both of the chemical kind and of the therapy kind. And I got better, continue to fight. I do not care if you are on the spectrum, if you have PTSD, OCD, ADHD, or any other alphabet soup or other issue. Our actions are our own and if you are truly unable to control your actions than you should be seeking help.

Side-note: I see the need for mental medications as no different than someone with asthma needing an inhaler, or a person that is diabetic needing insulin. If the body doesn’t produce it like it should, than giving it to yourself through an external source is not something to be shamed for. I am sick that in this time people with clinical depression are told to exercise, eat health, and be positive. Told this by medical “professionals”. Hey this is called Ramblings for a reason.

Returning to the type of people drawn my paganism, there are so many kind and trusting souls. So good natured that they become targets for people to use them. Reel them in and hook them and the next thing you know these good hearted people look about ready to die or suicide. They get used up until they have nothing left but continue to give, even if it means their own health and well-being because that is their nature. The paths also draw innocent souls, who are easy prey for various types of predators within the communities. It isn’t long before they aren’t so innocent, having it taken away like a parasite leeches blood. And these types are found not only at events and festivals, but will worm their way into covens, circles, or kindreds. I’m not even go into child predators.

How does this seemingly disjointed brain vomit fit together? It comes down to what walking the Lokean path is to me. Yes, we walk the tricksters path and the path of mischief. Loki’s the God of Mischief and Fire and Magic. A shapeshifter that take more than one lover and even has two wives. And when he screws up, he owns it and fixes it. Even in the lore, Loki NEVER broke an Oath.

But more so than that, how to walk the path to me is about the lore about Loki. We should protect the kind and the innocent for they are rare. Be aware of those who would manipulate others and don’t hesitate to do the same to them in order to protect your community. We tend to be shunted to the side and that’s fine. From there we can observe and see the truth of action and deed. We are not on a path that calls for Honor above all else, but Loyalty on the other hand now that is different. Even as the Aesir’s scapegoat too often, Loki did what was needed to protect those who took him in. Loki the doer of Good and Evil. Sounds strange doesn’t it? Not when looked at as someone who does terrible and horrible things when necessary for the protection of those whom they love.

Lokean will often face a certain coolness because of our patron. But you know what? That’s ok. If someone has earned my loyalty, if I claim someone as family, I don’t turn my back on them unless I’m left no other option. If they piss me off I cool down and ask myself honestly why I am pissed. Then we work it out.

But when it comes to abusers, manipulators, and predators show why we follow a Deity that is the Mother/Father of Monsters. We are in our way the children of Loki. And while I may cuss him, I am proud of the patron I follow. I know who I am and where I stand. I have looked into the mirror and faced my Truth, and it was very painful to see. But I didn’t flinch and I worked to fix the flaws there, still am. Because no one is perfect, and that’s quite fine. But give no excuses brothers and sisters. And do NOT allow abuse to stand in your own circle, coven, kindred. Call it out and name it for what it is. Use change to make it BETTER. Use chaos to destroy what needs it. Stand resolute in the knowledge you are doing the right thing, because it truly is rarely the easy thing. Just know with certainty it is needed before you act, and then act with love not malice.

Even dear loving Mother Nature is red of tooth and claw.